Recent Blog Posts
The education world is abuzz about teacher evaluation reform. Over the last three years, 32 states and the District of Columbia have enacted policies that have changed how those who teach are assessed.
It seems like every day...
As the year comes to a close, there’s a collection of very bold and progressive teachers voicing their opinions on the hot item of the moment: teacher evaluation. Some of my favorites include Renee Moore’s The Future Is Now for Teacher Evaluation and Michael Moran’s...
Great piece in New York Times on how schools on America's military bases are closing the achievement gap. Here's a slice:
It has become fashionable for American educators to fly off to Helsinki to investigate how schools there produce such high-achieving Finns. But for just $69.95 a night, they can stay at the Days Inn in Jacksonville, N.C., and investigate how the schools here on the Camp Lejeune Marine base produce such high-achieving Americans — both black and white.
They would find that the schools on base are not subject to former President George W. Bush’s...
Exactly one year ago, I was repeatedly approached about serving on a commission being pulled together by NEA around effective teaching, and I initially said, “No, thanks!"
Part of my reticence was the timing. Already involved with several large projects and looking at what I already knew was going to be an extremely full teaching year, I was not enthusiastic about spending precious time on yet another education commission.
There has been no shortage of committees, panels, commissions, reports, books, and mandates on what needs to be done to improve American public education, but disgustingly few of them have been done by the people who are the true education experts: successful classroom teachers. So, on the one hand I was...
I realized something this week: I have a deep-seated, unhealthy HATRED for paper.
Forms from the office, handouts from professional development sessions, and materials that need to be sent home to families sit in silent stacks on my desk, my counters, my backpack and my floor.
And that doesn’t even include the piles and piles of handwritten assignments that my 130 students turn in each week to demonstrate mastery.
Sure I’ve got folders and binders and file cabinets all neatly labeled and at the ready, but those neatly labeled storage systems are only useful if they’re close by when papers are given to me.
And sure I’ve got a wiki...
Good question, isn't it? And a question that I've asked myself about a million times as I've proctored my state's sixth grade reading and math tests considering how FEW of the questions on the math test -- my personal weakness -- I'm ever able to figure out.
More importantly, it's a question that I've wanted to see state policymakers -- who seem hell-bent on tying test scores to systems of teacher and student evaluation -- answer publicly.
I mean, seriously: If you are so flippin' confident that tests are a reliable tool for failing students and canning teachers, shouldn't you be willing to take those same tests and have YOUR results made public to the world?
Well, that's EXACTLY what Rick...
We're happy to announce that transformED has been nominated for a 2011 Edublog Award, in the category Best Group Blog. Voting is open through December 13 on the Edublog Awards blog. Make sure to check out the many other wondeful education-focused blogs that are also on the shortlist--it's great to be in such fine company. Many thanks to our writers and readers for getting transformED off the ground in its first few months! We're looking forward to an exciting future.
This post is part two in a series that offers an alternative to school reform that does not include a silver-bullet or fad diet.
I think that educational reformers spend way too much time focused on what's wrong in education. I think this is a problem for a couple of reasons.
First, focusing on what's wrong gets us into a negative mind space that warps our perception of the system. We end up thinking like a Dean of Discipline who spends her day, all day, dealing with the 15-20 children who are in trouble. From her point of view, it feels like all children are up to no good. This is because all of her experiences with children have been with those who were in trouble. When all we ever read about is what's wrong with public...