Guys, you aren’t going to believe this…Bill Gates and his wife spend a lot of money to influence education policy.
This testing story from Tennessee is pretty fantastic. You’re a state and your testing company isn’t doing a great job for you so you bring in another company to help with capacity and then – surprise! – the second company is owned by the first company. And neither company is named Pearson!
Anyway, I’m always struck how in any conversation about testing things immediately turn to Pearson – certainly a major player – but you don’t hear a lot about ETS, one of the two companies involved here or the American Institutes for Research, another major vendor.
Next time you’re tempted to dismiss bullying as just as rite of passage or something…
Rick Hess proposes a grand bargain on teacher pay. What’s sort of interesting is that to some extent this bargain is happening informally, starting pay or teachers is rising, pay is becoming (somewhat) more front loaded and retirement benefits are being curtailed. But it’s haphazard and the retirement reforms are of varying quality in terms of their utility as retirement policy – eg saving money by making it harder for new teachers to vest. BTW – All your teacher retirement questions answered here!