Still lacking a sterling accomplishment worthy of giving heft to your obit? I sympathize. But the great column by Jay Mathews I blogged on yesterday gives us all a come-from-behind opportunity.
As Eduwonk readers know, something truly significant is playing out in the charter school movement, with the “elite” charter groups separating themselves from the mom and pop charters that for years have barely risen above the pack of traditional schools. Not long ago, Mr. Eduwonk and I wrote about it here (subscription required) in Ed Week.
I call them elites, but that sounds like a country club where they make you wear ties and jackets to Sunday dinners in August. Calling them paternalistic is even worse.
Here’s Jay struggling with the dilemma:
“Here are some other names I made up, mostly out of desperation: tough-love schools, teacher-driven schools, challenge schools, strong-principal schools, achievement-focus schools. In his book, Whitman occasionally calls them the no-excuses school, a reference to Samuel Casey Carter’s 2001 book, “No Excuses: Lessons from 21 High-Performing, High-Poverty Schools.” I suppose we could use Carter’s subtitle and call them the HPHP schools, or the HP squared schools. My wife, an editor expert in turning complex thoughts into short headlines, had an idea I like: high-intensity schools.”
So I propose an Eduwonk-sponsored naming contest, with the winner revealed publicly on Eduwonk. Think about all those Uncommon Schools, Green Dots, Achievement Firsts, KIPPs and send your term of art to me.
–Guestblogger Richard Whitmire