About Eduwonk & ES Media

About Eduwonk
ES Blog Editorial Policy
Education Sector
The Education Sector Digest
The Quick and the Ed

News Feeds & More



Reviews of Eduwonk.com

2007 Winner, Editor's Choice Best Education Blog
-- Performancing.com

2006 Winner, Best K-12 Administration Blog -- "Best of the Education Blog Awards"
-- eSchool News and Discovery Education

2006 Finalist, Best Education Blog
-- Weblog Awards

Least influential of education's most influential information sources.
-- Education Week Research Center

"unexpectedly entertaining"..."tackle[s] a potentially mindfogging subject with cutting clarity... they're reading those mushy, brain-numbing education stories so you don't have to!"
-- Slate's Mickey Kaus

"a very smart blog... [if] you're trying to separate the demagogic attacks on NCLB from the serious criticism, this is the site to read"
-- The New Republic's Ryan Lizza

"everyone who's anyone reads Eduwonk"
-- Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media's Richard Colvin

"full of very lively short items and is always on top of the news...He gets extra points for skewering my high school rating system"
-- Jay Mathews, The Washington Post

"a daily dose of information from the education policy world, blended with a shot of attitude and a dash of humor"
-- Education Week

"designed to cut through the fog and direct specialists and non-specialists alike to the center of the liveliest and most politically relevant debates on the future of our schools"
-- The New Dem Daily

"peppered with smart and witty comments on the education news of the day"
-- Education Gadfly

"don't hate Eduwonk cuz it's so good"
-- Alexander Russo, This Week In Education

"the morning's first stop for education bomb-throwers everywhere"
-- Mike Antonucci, Intercepts

"…the big dog on the ed policy blog-ck…"
-- Michele McLaughlin, AFT Blog

"I check Eduwonk several times a day, especially since I cut back on caffeine"
-- Joe Williams, fallen journalist, Executive Director, Democrats for Education Reform

"...one of the few bloggers who isn't completely nuts"
-- Mike Petrilli, Thomas B. Fordham Foundation

"I have just three 'go to' websites: The Texas Legislature, Texas Longhorn sports, and Eduwonk"
-- Sandy Kress, former education advisor to President Bush and former chairman, Dallas Board of Education

"penetrating analysis in a lively style on a wide range of issues"
-- Walt Gardner, champion letter-to-the-editor writer and retired teacher

-- Susan Ohanian

Education News and Analysis

American Educator
Chronicle of Higher Education
Education Next
Education Week
eSchool News
Inside Higher Ed
Jay Mathews' Class Struggle
Phi Delta Kappan
New York Times Education
School Wise Press
Teacher Magazine

Policy and Political Blogs

The American Scene
Andrew Sullivan.com
Booker Rising
The Corner
Daniel Drezner
Dangerous Thoughts
The Democratic Strategist
The Has Been
Huffington Post
Loose Cannon
Matthew Yglesias
The Plank (TNR)
Political Animal (Washington Monthly)
The Politico
Post Global
Real Clear Politics
Taking Note
Think Tank Town
Volokh Conspiracy
WSJ's Blog Federation
Washington Whispers


Collective Bargaining in Education: Negotiating Change in Today's Schools

Edited by Jane Hannaway and Andrew J. Rotherham

Why Newsweek's List of America's 100 Best High Schools Doesn't Make the Grade

By Andrew J. Rotherham
and Sara Mead

A Qualified Teacher
in Every Classroom

Edited by Frederick M. Hess, Andrew J. Rotherham,
and Kate Walsh

America's Teaching Crisis

By Jason Kamras and Andrew J. Rotherham

Rethinking Special Education For A New Century

Edited by Chester E. Finn, Jr., Andrew J. Rotherham
& Charles R. Hokanson, Jr.

Making The Cut: How States Set Passing Scores on Standardized Tests

By Andrew J. Rotherham

Education Blogs

A Constrained Vision
Andrew Pass
a schoolyard blog
Assorted Stuff
Mr. B-G's English Blog
Barnett Berry
Bill Jackson's Education Blog
Bridging Differences (Meier and Ravitch)
Bulletin Board (NASBE)
Campaign K-12 (Ed Week)
Chaos Theory
Charter Blog (NAPCS)
Charter School Policy Inst. Blog
Chez Dormont
Chris Correa
Class Context
The College Puzzle
College Ready Blog (Athens Learning Group)
The Common School
Conversation Starters
Core Knowledge Blog
Critical Mass
Dangerously Irrelevant
Daryl Cobranchi
Dave Shearon
Dave Saba (ABCTE)
DC Education Blog
Dems for Education Reform
The Deputy Head
Early Ed Watch
Early Stories
Educated Nation
Educating One Mind
The Education Network
The Education Wonks
Edwize (UFT)
Eponymous Educator
Essential Blog
Extra Credit
Flypaper (Fordham)
Fordham Fellows
From The Trenches
The Gadfly
Get On The Bus (Dayton Daily News)
Get Schooled (AJC)
The Gradebook (St. Pete Times)
Grumpy Professor
The Hall Monitor
Higher Ed Watch
Hip Teacher
I Thought A Think
In Other News (Ed Week)
Inside Pre-K
Jay Greene
Jenny D.
John Merrow
K-12 Hotlinks
Kindling Flames
Kitchen Table Math
Learning Now (PBS)
The Life That Chose Me
Mathew K. Tabor
Media Infusion
Ms. Frizzle
Moving At The Speed Of Creativity
NCLB Act II (Ed Week)
NSBA's BoardBuzz
NYC Educator
Paper Trail (USN)
ParaNews (NCP)
Paul Baker
The Portable Princess
The PrincipalsPage
Principal's Policy Blog (NASSP)
Quasi Dictum
Roy Romer
Running on Empty
School of Blog
School Zone (MJS)
Schools for Tomorrow
Science After School
SF Schools
Sherman Dorn
SITE Mentor
Small Talk
Special Education Law Blog
Starting Over (Ed Week)
Swift & Change Able
Teach and Learn
Teacher Voices
Teachers At Risk
Teachers' Lounge
Teaching in the 408
Teaching Rookie
Think Lab
This is how I Swim
This Week In Education
Tim Fredrick
Up The Down Staircase
Urban Angle
What up, Mz. Smlph?
Whitney Tilson
Why Boys Fail
Why Homeschool

Educational Resources and Organizations

AALE Charter School Accreditation
Alliance for Excellent Education
American Association of School Administrators
American Educational Research Association
American Federation of Teachers
American Institutes For Research
Annie E. Casey Foundation
Aspen Institute
Asia Society
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
The Broad Foundation
The Brookings Institution
Building Excellent Schools
Center for American Progress
Center for Education Reform
Center for School Change
Center on Education Policy
Center on Reinventing Public Education
Citizens Commission On Civil Rights
Coalition of Essential Schools
Community College Research Center
Community Training and Assistance Center
Council of Chief State School Officers
Council of Great City Schools
Core Knowledge Foundation
Data Quality Campaign
Democratic Leadership Council
eSchool News
Education Commission of the States
Education Evolving
Education Sector
The Education Trust
George Lucas Educational Foundation
Haberman Foundation
Hechinger Institute On Education and the Media
Joyce Foundation
Just for the Kids
Knowledge Alliance
Learning Point Associates
Local School Directory
Michael and Susan Dell Foundation
Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning
The Mind Trust
National Academies Center for Education
National Alliance for Public Charter Schools
National Association of Charter School Authorizers
National Association of Secondary School Principals
National Center for Postsecondary Research
National Center on Education and the Economy
National Charter School Research Project
National Council on Teacher Quality
National Education Association
National Education Writers Association
National Governors Association
National Institute for Excellence in Teaching
National School Boards Association
New Leaders for New Schools
New Schools Venture Fund
The New Teacher Project
New Vision
Pre-K Now
Harvard's Program On Education Policy and Governance
Progressive Policy Institute
PPI's 21st Century Schools Project
Public Agenda
Public Impact
Reading Reform Foundation
Rick Hess' World HQ
The Savvy Source for Parents
Scholastic Administrator
School Data Direct
Standard & Poor's School Evaluation Services
Standards Work
Teach for America
The Teaching Commission
Thomas B. Fordham Foundation
Trust for Early Education
Uncommon Schools
United States Department of Education
The Urban Institute

Opinions on Eduwonk reflect the views of the author, Education Sector does not take institutional positions. Outgoing links do not constitute an endorsement.

Friday, July 21, 2006

New Edublog

Looking for a new edublog? Check out Eponymous Educator. Education grad student, blogging up a storm. He's all over the recent public-private back and forth.
Posted at 1:34 PM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Doyle Reports
Interesting Denis Doyle column on productivity and time:

If education is funded without measuring results decisions are based on impulse and sentiment, a risky business that. Yet if education is to be funded on results we need a high degree of social consensus on what results are desirable (and measurable).
Posted at 10:26 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

The Bergen Record Attacks...And, A Grand Buyout?
They keep telling me there is no issue here, but then I read stories like this: Tenure helps good teachers and shelters the bad ones.

Two things jump out here. First, while "tenure" is an issue, it's not as though school districts in states with fewer rules are somehow models of good human resources and sensitivity to talent. The more core problem is that education -- regardless of the specific labor context -- is simply not very sensitive to talent right now. That's cultural, institutional, and a function of policy and it's a much bigger issue than work rules alone. Second, as a general rule, the same teachers that get headlines like these are ones reformist union leaders would like to see gone, too. Consequently, seems like there are some deals to be cut in some places. The joke is that all teachers favor having classes with three fewer students -- especially if they get to choose the three. Some union leaders would be OK with a few fewer if the deal is structured with an eye toward the right few...

That's an opportunity for a grand bargain in some locales...
Posted at 9:40 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Changing Edupolitics Part Deux
Sherman Dorn responds to this post saying that none of the ideas in play are very new. Fair enough, but my point wasn't about the message as much as the messenger(s) in the article. There is an unmistakable shift starting to happen among some elites with strong ties to Democrats and leading Democrats (like Joel Klein) themselves. How it plays out? TBD.
Posted at 9:35 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Thursday, July 20, 2006


The NEA is increasingly like North Korea, things aren't going well so they're lashing out. At Q&E Kevin Carey dissects the latest missives from Dear Leader.
Posted at 5:20 PM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Higher Ed
New college tuition idea from Senator Clinton's American Dream Initiative. Clinton, Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE), and Governor Tom Vilsack (D-IA) describe it here in today's Denver Post:

We propose a plan to produce one million more college and community college graduates a year by 2015. Paid for by getting rid of wasteful business subsidies, our plan consolidates existing tax credits into a new $3,000 refundable tax credit for four years of college or training, and proposes a performance-based block grant that will enable states to reduce tuition costs and increase graduation rates. Together, these ideas will make it possible for any student willing to work part-time or perform community service to go to college for four years tuition-free.

It's an innovative framework and higher ed is not a bad place for Dems to focus going into 2008 since it's easier to achieve party unity than around K-12 where there are some tough issues thwarting consensus. But, ultimately you've got to have something to say about K-12 'cause these college graduates have to come from somewhere.
Posted at 4:54 PM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

New Stripes
Pro-voucher OH African-American (former) Democrat Dixie Allen has switched parties in no small part because of the issue. I'm not a voucher guy, but I do think that like abortion there are some issues that a party needs to signal that reasonable people can disagree and multiple viewpoints are welcome. Scott Elliot, tell us more!
Posted at 4:30 PM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Loose Lucey Is Michelle Davis' Delight
For the past week several journos have been calling around trying to get confirmation that Tom Luce was indeed stepping down from his post at the Department of Education. Though everyone in town seemed to know that this was happening and why (sheath the knives, no sinister story at all, he's not well) journos were having a hell of a time getting people whose paycheck comes from the U.S. Treasury to confirm it. Best I can tell Ed Week's Michelle Davis was the first to nail it down with a big story out today. This is a big hole for the administration to fill since Ed Sec. Spellings relied heavily on Luce and was sort of the de facto number two there. It's also unfortunate timing for the Bushies since Kevin Sullivan is departing for the White House to run the communications shop there (which means that soon I should be getting an exclusive bloggy education interview with the POTUS which will prompt poor SEJ Russo to toss himself from a window) so they're losing some key players all at once.

So, on the Luce matter, mixed metaphor inside baseball-horserace handicapping: Big loser? Secretary Spellings, she's losing a key aide. Big winner? Russ Whitehurst. No secret there was no love lost there and some real disagreements about the interaction of research and policy.
Posted at 2:30 PM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Childstat 2006
Your tax dollars at work: An interagency project collects data on the well-being of children in the United States. Newly updated for 2006 you can find it here though lots more coming in 2007. Also see this interview with NICHD's Duane Alexander here. Good resource.
Posted at 8:31 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

More Vouchers? And, Why The New IES Is Working

I have trouble seeing this new Republican push for vouchers as anything more than base-pleasing gibberish. But hey, in a tight political climate that stuff wins elections! But, if they were really interested in quickly expanding the number of seats in high quality schools available to under-served kids, why wouldn't they champion a big initiative to leverage the best public charter schools? Less controversial, more impact, big bipartisan potential...

On Ed Secretary Spellings' contention that the first she even heard of this new NCES report on public and private schools* was in the newspaper, I have a little trouble believing that she hadn't even caught a whiff of it -- she's pretty plugged in and everyone else knew about it. But, that said, the real story here is that the 2002 reorganization of federal education research is actually working. Like the NAEP charter school data from a few years ago, that the politicals were caught somewhat flatfooted is a good thing and shows that the firewalls are having some effect.

*See also this very sensible NYT editorial board take on the new study.
Posted at 9:27 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Changin' Edupolitics...And, Why Joel Klein Has To Sleep With One Eye Open...

If you want a quick look at the new edupolitics you can't beat this Mort Kondracke column. Read the entire thing and add another body to Joel Klein's security detail...(what's the over-under on the Edwize response? Eduwonk predicts a reference to Montaigne and a response in less than 36 hours). Also, buried in the column is more on the Chamber of Commerce initiative, which has changed direction some since its announcement.
Posted at 5:57 PM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Monday, July 17, 2006

Highest Paid Migrant Workers In The Country...

Creg Williams out as sup't in St. Louis:

He portrayed his departure as par for the course in his business." The board's changed," he said. "When the board changes, you change leadership. That's the way it works in this industry."

Par for the course, yes. A good way to run a railroad???
Posted at 12:03 PM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Grad Rates
New MDRC study on Project Grad that is worth your time if you follow the issue.
Posted at 8:52 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

At Last...
The long awaited NCES report on public - private school student achievement (pdf) is out. The AFTies had been beating the drum that this report was being squelched and Saturday's Times story credits them and says as much. Maybe, though having been on the other side I'm sympathetic to how long it takes gov't to release things like this and IES Director Russ Whitehurst is a pretty stand-up guy and is seriously committed to freeing up research from political influence. And it would be a dumb thing to suppress anyway since there really isn't anything incendiary in it anyway one way or the other. It has zippo in the way of causal claims, is well done, and pretty much confirms what other research has shown: When you account for demographics much of the difference between public and private schools, insofar as standardized tests are concerned, evaporates (Wash. Monthly's Kevin Drum dissents here*). Besides, the construct here (in terms of the argument that the Admin isn't playing straight pool) is that the Bush Administration's education agenda begins and ends with privatization. While they're certainly not hostile to private schools and private providers of educational services, in fairness there is more to their educational agenda than that.

In any event, even though the report looks at different kinds of private schools to some extent, both the public and the private category are so broad and heterogeneous that just comparing them doesn't tell us much because within these categories there is so much variation. In fact, rather than being a scathing indictment of vouchers as some are framing it, I think it's more just a reaffirmation that all schools receiving public money should have to follow some basic rules about transparency and information since being private (or public) is by itself no determinant of quality.

*One thought: Keep an eye on math scores more than reading scores when trying to see what effect schools are having on learning. That's because reading today is more linked with social capital than math is. In other words, kids learn about reading in a variety of ways but mostly get math in school.
Posted at 8:48 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post

Ross Resolution
The Ross school controversy seems to have found a resolution where wealthy parents don't have to have their door darkened by this charter school and Klein-Bloomberg get a political win (and help the school out of this mess). Yet while The Times compares Klein to Rod Paige (the latter also gave over school administration space to charters when he was superintendent in Houston), even though Klein is not running the school, isn't the more relevant NYC parallel, at least politically, between Klein having a charter a few floors below his office and the UFT opening some? Joe Williams breaks his no-Ross pledge and has more.
Posted at 8:32 AM | Comments: 0 | Link to this item | Email this post