Member Since 2011

Robert Pondiscio


Robert Pondiscio is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), where he focuses on K–12 education, curriculum, teaching, school choice, and charter schooling. Before joining AEI, he was a policy analyst and education reform expert at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, an education policy think tank. He previously worked for the Core Knowledge Foundation and as an adviser and civics teacher at Democracy Prep Public Schools. He writes and speaks extensively on education and education-reform issues, with an emphasis on literacy, curriculum, teaching, and urban education. After twenty years in journalism, including senior positions at TIME and BusinessWeek, Robert became a fifth-grade teacher at a struggling South Bronx public school in 2002. He subsequently served as vice president for the Core Knowledge Foundation. Robert’s articles and op-ed columns on education have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic, the New York Daily News, Education Next, and many other publications. A frequent speaker and expert guest on education issues, he has appeared on the Fox News Channel, CNN, and elsewhere.

Published Articles & Media

Is Common Core Too Hard for Kindergarten?

We can have kindergarten that is both play-based and language-rich. It’s what the best kindergarten teachers have always done.

Model Citizens

Arizona became the first state to make passing the U.S. Citizenship Test a high school graduation requirement.

Don’t Confuse Jargon with Rigor

Elementary school English language arts classrooms have long been in the thrall of nonsensical jargon.

2015: The Year of Curriculum- Based Reform?

Curriculum and content matter—and for no one more than poor kids who get too little of that knowledge and vocabulary at home.

Carmen Fariña’s War on Evidence

While running the nation’s largest school system, Carmen Farina has made a growing list of decisions based not on empirical evidence, but on the chancellor’s personal preference.

Why Didn’t I Think Of That?

Here are some of the pieces—about Common Core and education at large—I wish I’d written in 2014.

It Pays to Increase Your Word Power

To grow up as the child of well-educated parents in an affluent American home is to hit the verbal lottery.

A Response to Carol Burris and Rick Hess on Common Core Math in the Elementary Grades

Common Core has the potential to shift and drastically improve math instruction in American schools,

Let’s Tell the Truth: High-Stakes Tests Damage Reading Instruction

It’s long past time to recognize that reading tests don’t measure what we think they do.

What’s Right About Common Core

The overheated rhetoric around Common Core elides the fact that it incorporates several fundamentally sound and long-overdue ideas that have gone missing from our schools for decades.

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