State Policy

Atlanta Grades

A story last week in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that fully 191 schools in the state of Georgia, 10 percent of the total number of elementary and middle schools, are up for investigation for altering test answer sheets. The next day's story put the count at one in five Georgia public schools.

Book Excerpt: Kay Merseth Reads From Inside Urban Charter Schools

Last fall, Ed Next published a short review of a new book, Inside Urban...

Book Excerpt: Richard Whitmire Reads from Why Boys Fail

EdNext is teaming with authors of newly released books to provide 15-minute audio excerpts...

It Depends on What the Meaning of “Transparency” Is

Yesterday, on his Eduwonk blog, Andy Rotherham weighed in on the brewing controversy over the Race to the Top review process. Rotherham suggests that Duncan try a variation of the “it depends on what the meaning of ‘is’ is” defense, explaining, "'Transparent' is not synonymous with contemporaneous. In other words, a process can be transparent while it is going on or it can be transparent after the fact." It'll be amusing to see whether Duncan tries that defense; somehow, I don't think it'll play that well.

Expanding Choice in Elementary and Secondary Education

An upcoming Brookings Institution report — "Expanding Choice in Elementary and Secondary Education" — will make interesting reading. The preview for a release event says that the report will discuss “how to expand school choice to increase equity and create a market within the public sector for school quality.” Given the expertise and background of the panelists who will present next week, how they define equity, the public sector, and school quality will be quite significant.

Victory Puts New Orleans in the Spotlight

The Saints’ thrilling victory over the Vikings in overtime Sunday night in the Superdome...

The NCTE on College Readiness

After the Common Core project released its first draft of standards for English Language Arts last summer, the National Council of Teachers of English had a "review team" issue a report on the document to be submitted to the project as it worked its way through subsequent versions. Apart from the immediate aim of steering the core standards in certain directions, the document also offers a vision of English education that strangely downplays the fundamental principle of the project, namely, college and career readiness.

A Clearer Picture on Charter Schools

The effectiveness of charter schools in raising student achievement has become an intensely debated issue. When we last considered this topic, the Department of Education was pushing charter schools but dueling studies introduced uncertainty. A new study by CREDO clears up the uncertainty.

Racing to National Tests?

While everyone obsesses over the competition among the states for Race to the Top funding, the Education Department is readying a separate competition for less than one-tenth as much money that may nonetheless prove far more consequential for American education over the long term.

The Minnesota Re-Education of Educators

Readers may have heard about recent developments of the Teacher Education Redesign Initiative at the University of Minnesota. It's a project to revise the training of teachers, and it has infuriated conservative, libertarian, and First Amendment groups. Among the elements of the process is the Task Force for Race, Culture, Class, and Gender, which issued its recommendations in September. The Outcomes of the document read like a parody of academic identity politics, but they stand loud and clear in black and white.

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