July 24, 2018

What Does Reform Need? That And More…

Kate Pennington and Max Marchitello argue that choice and integration aren’t at odds, they need each other. Related: Michelle Perone on why it matters that access to arts, social studies, etc…are not equitably distributed in today’s schools.

Marnie Kaplan on the case for pre-k in the current debate.

Alyson Klein notes that the testing wars have quieted down. Yes, but. Might it be that they’ve quieted down because tests are increasingly not consequential in many (though not all) places? In other words, people said they didn’t want ‘testing for testing’s sake’ but that seems to be in effect the compromise regime in a lot of places.

Here’s an interesting push on what reform needs from Bill Jackson.

New look at school district consolidation and equity.

Megan McArdle previews some of the contours of the next round of the affirmative action debate.

Parag Pathak on school choice. 

David Leonhardt on charters, part 2: 

I find the New Orleans story encouraging because of both the academic progress and the willingness to grapple with these shortcomings. Parents here know the progress is real, because their children have benefited from it. But they also know that the charter schools aren’t a magic bullet.

Where theory meets reality: Here’s an article worrying that teachers don’t get a say on state boards of education. I guess that’s true if you ignore the lobbying apparatus around those boards and the backgrounds of people on the boards themselves – many of which are a textbook example of regulatory capture. To be clear, teachers should have a voice on these boards – so should other stakeholders and arguably a bigger problem is the lack of meaningful student input – it’s just awfully hard to argue they don’t now in practice.

Ref Rodriguez is off the LA school board after reaching a plea deal.

Joanne Jacobs on Summit.

Meet Blitzkreig.

July 20, 2018

Teacher Residencies, New Innovation Prize, Sonja Santelises, Special Ed, Fish, The Only Man Jerry Lee Would Still Call Sir…More…

Here’s Ashley LiBetti and Justin Trinidad with an important  look at teacher residences surfacing some important issues and questions to consider when thinking about that approach to teacher preparation. Here’s more.

Scroll down for a lot of edujobs and a lot of fish porn.

Comings and goings. Tom Boasberg is leaving in Denver and Jim Blew is formally confirmed by the Senate to lead policy operations for Betsy DeVos at ED.

New prize for innovative ideas to help low-income youth access and complete college and vocational programs. 

Fordham revisits reading and writing instruction in the Common Core era.

This is an important piece from your future Secretary of Education.

Checking in with a past one – Margaret Spellings.

CRPE analysts take a look at how WA State charters are serving special education students. And parents can be on the other side, too.

On edu ideas, Sandy Kress has a list.

Janus fallout.

Erica Green volunteered in a Maryland newsroom to help the shorthanded paper there in the wake of the recent shooting.

Carl Perkins Cadillac.

Friday Fish Porn: Hog!

Look at education consultant and pride of North Carolina Simmons Lettre with this fish! Her biggest yet on a fly rod.

Lettre who worked with New American Schools, ERS, and Charter Board Partners, which she co-founded, before going independent had some downtime in Colorado this week so she went fishing. Why not, right? And then this happened.

In this archive of hundreds of pictures of education types with fish dating back 12 years you can find some of Jane Hannaway and Paul Herdman on the same river near Basalt, Colorado, a lovely town in an area recently hit by wildfire (get the huevos rancheros at Two Rivers and you can fish all day on a full stomach).

July 18, 2018

Edujob: Data Analysis Manager @ E.L. Haynes Public Charter School

Here’s a fun edujob at a Washington, D.C. charter school: Data Analysis Manager at E.L. Haynes.

From the JD:

A key component to E.L. Haynes’s success will be its ability to objectively reflect on its efforts and find ways to improve its practices. By building systems that support E.L. Haynes leaders in using data to inform their decisions, the data team plays a central role in helping E.L. Haynes achieve its mission.  The Data Analysis Manager, along with the Director of Data Systems and the Strategy and Policy Manager comprise the data team.  As part of the broader academic team, the Data Analysis Manager will analyze data and communicate actionable insights to the Chief Executive Officer, the Chief Academic Officer, school principals, school administrators, and teachers.  The Data Analysis Manager will also work directly with staff to develop their data analysis and interpretation skills.

Scroll down this page to see the listing (and other open roles at Haynes).

July 17, 2018

New Orleans, Pre-K, Charter Schools, This Field Can Fight About Anything! Plus Howard Fuller, Kate Walsh, And Chad Aldeman’s Parallel Universe. Bonus Mom Voice…

Chad Aldeman thought exercise on teacher pay and pensions. Jason Weeby on dynamism and schools.

Howard Fuller in his own words via The 74.

New Orleans still has a long way to go on schools but there is some good news that often gets lost in the strident debate. Times here. New study here.

School is hard.

Is there anything more fun than a pre-k fade out debate? We’re going to have one.

Interesting analysis on low-income students, and middle income ones, and college participation.

Urban on diversity and teacher prep programs.

Kate Walsh on the post-Janus landscape. 

Peter Cunningham has some go-forward education ideas, too. 

Guys, you are not going to believe this...the Waltons spend a lot on charter schools. Bill and Melinda Gates, too!* (Also, if these state charter groups are so powerful then why are charters constantly getting attacked in state legislatures and why do so many states have fake charter school laws to begin with?) It’s preposterous to argue charters have anything like the upper hand even given their growth (which has slowed since this deck was released). Also, by way of context, most charters don’t get philanthropy – it’s an 80-20 thing.

Trends in family income and private school participation.

There is some education legislating going on in Washington.

Paymon on the discipline debate. Related: Revisiting the pre-Trump discipline debate.

Mom voice.

*Obvious disclosure, Bellwether receives funding from the Walton Family Foundation and has received Gates funding and the Gates Foundation is currently a client. All Bellwether clients and funders are posted on our website.

Posted on Jul 17, 2018 @ 10:36am

July 13, 2018

Edujob: Manager Of Public Policy @ New York City Charter School Center

Charter schools are arguably the most dynamic part of the education scene in New York City and here’s a great job at a key intermediary supporting them: Manager of Public Policy at the New York City Charter School Center.

The New York City Charter School Center (Charter Center) works to foster a public policy environment that ensures that charter schools can continue to open and succeed for New York City’s school children. We are seeking a full-time Manager of Public Policy who will help the Charter Center influence changes in state and local education policy and contribute to the public’s greater understanding and awareness about the benefits of charter schooling. The Manager will serve as a key member of the Policy & Advocacy team and collaborate with senior leadership and the Communications and PR teams to proactively ensure a vibrant charter sector.   

Read the entire JD and learn how to be considered here.

Friday Fish Pics! Big Fish.

Lina Bankert is a partner on Bellwether’s Strategic Advising team. Her husband, Andy, and son, Cody, like to go fishing and here they are with a great catch from earlier this month. Cody caught it. Up in Michigan, as you can tell.

Fish bigger than kid is always a good look.

Want more pictures of education-connected people with fish? Of course you do, it’s summer and it’s Friday. Click here for hundreds.

July 12, 2018

Human Centered Design And Ed Policy, Pensions, Career Choices, Janus Defenses, More!

Here’s a new tool kit for human centered design in education from Bellwether. More about it from Jason Weeby via AOTH.

Gabrielle Gassmann on how a teacher can think about when to retire relative to their pension system.

Summer camp can be a great growth experience for kids.

Here’s a round up of Janus inoculation laws. Some of this will face trouble in the courts because of the Alito opinion in the case but if you’re a legislator with ties to the unions these are political freebies so look for more bills to come.

High stakes career choosing.

Open-letter on school discipline guidance.

Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh and education.

Updated school shooting prevention guide from the Secret Service. Some good ideas but given education’s track record on implementation also some things that could go awry…

Marcus King Band.

July 10, 2018

Are Teacher Training Programs Widgets? EduMom, Cerf On Janus, Chicago, LA, And More…

Are teacher training programs interchangeable widgets? Ashley LiBetti and Chad Aldeman go deeper on that question. 

Hailly Korman on gaps in services for adjudicated youth.

Federal judge rules that literacy not a fundamental right.

Chris Cerf on Janus and what’s next.

From Mass, Jonas on Edumom.

This is an interesting analysis, but sort of bad news for political traction for education reform because its a strategy that pays dividends over decades while people vote in the present.

On that note, Mike Petrilli has some ideas where education reform should go.

Diversity struggles at prestigious TJ in Northern VA.

RAND takes a look at reform in LA. And Governing takes a look at Chicago. 

I’m With Her.

July 9, 2018

Pensions, Pride, Fragmented Students, And More From Bellwether. Plus Janus Fallout, Ed Debates, Books Behind Bars, More!

Scroll down for some edujobs.

From Bellwether:

Education fragmentation is a big problem for a lot of students – especially those most at-risk. In a new Bellwether report Hailly Korman and Justin Trinidad look at how technology can help mitigate some of the problems.

Hailly Korman talks with Nick Melvoin about reforms to forced placement in Los Angeles.

Late to these because I’ve been away but here’s Bellwether’s Justin Boratto on being an out teacher and Bellwether’s Jeremy Knight on coming out as a high school student.

One of the most common pension related searches on Google is simply, how do I calculate my pension? Except it’s not simple. Max Marchitello unpacks how it works.

Washington Post checks in with Andrew Kauffman’s “Books Behind Bars” UVA class that teaches with Tolstoy in a Virginia prison. Here’s a trailer from Chris Farina’s new film about the class. Bellwether hosted a screening for the film a few months ago.


TEACH Grant problems persist, now it’s DeVos’ fault.  Dale Chu says local collective bargaining agreements are going to temper the Janus impact. Good look at the stakes in the selective high school exam debate in New York City. This story about an Oregon student caught up in anti-violence effort at his school is crazy.

Conservative activists are setting their sights on competency-based education models. Echoes of school to work debate…

Teachers and feedback.

Anti-Janus conservatives will burn in hell says union leader.

This bear knows how to have a good time.