Member Since 2011

Robert Pondiscio


Robert Pondiscio is senior fellow and vice president for external affairs at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute. He is also a senior advisor to Democracy Prep Public Schools, a network of high-performing charter schools based in Harlem, New York. 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

Where Common Core Is Not Controversial

Those who see Common Core as a curricular monoculture, a boondoggle for publishers, or a violation of local control would do well to come to Reno.

Connecting the Dots: E. D. Hirsch, Jr., and Common Core

On Politico's list of fifty “thinkers, doers and dreamers who really matter,” sharing the number eight spot are E.D. Hirsch and David Coleman, the principal author of the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts.

Thanks, Bobby Jindal!

When the court decides, as it almost certainly has to that, in fact, no one forced Louisiana or any other state to adopt Common Core, the most effective anti-Common Core argument goes, “Poof!”

Holding a Wolf by the Ears

Secretary Duncan’s reflective take on testing can delay, but cannot resolve, the reckoning that seems to be at hand.

What Is Going On at Success Academy?

New York’s latest round of state test results were released last week and the biggest news is the scores posted by Success Academy.

Can You Be an Ed Reformer and a Conservative?

The real challenge for conservatives has less to do with the nature of school reform than ensuring that the public and private functions served by education are brought into proper balance.

New York’s Common Core Tests: Tough Questions, Curious Choices

The bottom line: the tests are hard, as expected, but the choice of texts needs work.

Not Teacher Quality, but Quality Teaching

Any pedagogy, curriculum, approach, or technology has to be within the skills of ordinary teachers to implement well and effectively. If it takes a superstar teacher it's a nonstarter.

Why Johnny Won’t Learn to Read

We know for a fact that "balanced literacy" has had little effect on closing stubborn achievement gaps. So why is New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina bringing it back?

A Missed Opportunity for Common Core

Common Core supporters should be showcasing lessons that represent a sharp break with the skills-driven, all-texts-are-created-equal approach that has come to dominate too many classrooms.

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