The education headlines continue to pile in today, and most of them aren’t focused on nominations at the U.S. Department of Education nor the education implications of the economic stimulus bill. Some ideas to consider:
Imagine entering your educational pipeline, not understanding a single word uttered by the teacher in front of the classroom. Listening to classmates having conversations that you can’t participate in. Attending a school district where dozens of languages can be heard in the hallways of a particular school. In a growing number of school districts across the nation, these imaginary situations are all too real.
If this is how 2009 is starting off, it is going to be a very fun and interesting year for Eduflack and the education improvement community. Word out of Colorado this afternoon is that Gov. Bill Ritter has selected a replacement for U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar, who is moving over to be Secretary of the Interior. Over the past few weeks, a lot of names of been mentioned for the Senate seat, including those of sitting congressmen and the Denver mayor. So why is Gov. Ritter’s selection so exciting for Eduflack? Ritter has chosen Denver Public Schools Superintendent Michael Bennet to represent the Centennial State in the senior legislative body.
I admit it, Eduflack is a sucker for Christmas. As a kid, I used to stay up all night, just waiting for Christmas morning to come. Now, there is nothing I like more than giving gifts to the Edu-family. Each year, I tend to go a little overboard, receiving more than my share of reprimands from Eduwife for my “generosity.” This season is sure to be no different.
he innovators receive the best of holiday tidings. And I hope the status quoers see a guiding light this holiday season, recognizing that our schools need real improvement, and that we should stop at nothing until every fourth grader is reading at grade level, every student is graduating high school and is graduating college ready, and every teacher has the training and ongoing support necessary to deliver the high-quality education every student needs and deserves. ‘Tis the season, after all.
As President-Elect Obama and his Administration-in-waiting begin working through the transition, they have a terrific opportunity to shape the direction of future policy and future successes. With each new administration, particularly with a change in party leadership, there is the opportunity to reorganize Cabinet departments, the chance to emphasize new priorities and to turn back the efforts of previous administrations. While Stephen Hess of the Brookings Institution cautions against overhauls and reorganizations at the start of an Administration, now is definitely the time to look at a new organization for the U.S. Department of Education.
there is still a great deal of work that needs to be done to meet that goal. IES needs to broaden its mission beyond the WWC and become a true clearinghouse for quality research and a Good Housekeeping seal of approval for what works. More importantly, it needs to expand the dialogue beyond the researchers and effectively communicate the education sciences to practitioners, advocates, and others in the field.
This morning, the Broad Foundation unveiled the big winner of the 2008 Broad Prize for Urban Education. Heading into the announcement in New York City, many believed that Miami-Dade would be the big winner. But when the name was announced and the check was awarded, Brownsville, Texas stood proud and tall.
Over the past two days, Eduflack has taken a close look at the educational platforms offered up by the two presidential campaigns. Again, the ground rules were simple. We looked at the campaigns’ plans as identified, laid out, and described on both candidates’ official websites. No cheating from the speeches made by Lisa Keegan or Jon Schnur or other surrogates. No interpreting what a few throw-away lines from the conventions meant. Not even a few glimpses into both senators’ voting records in the congress these past four years (the time they were together). No, we are here to measure vetted, official plan against vetted official plan.
eacher education in general. Obama avoids discussions of reading/literacy, alternative certification, online learning, and parental involvement.
When we discuss education reform, the issue of urban education is usually one of the top discussion points. But in most corners, urban education translates into the education of the African-American community. We look at the achievement gap, and it is usually how black students measure up against white students. Even recent efforts to boost high school graduation rates and college-going rates that focus on underserved populations seem to focus first on the African-American community.
As many of us have known for much of the past two years, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama is all about change. His approach to education reform is no different. It is a diverse strategy, like his base of supporters, and reflects a message of change from some of the traditional Democratic education planks.
tion wise, and what are remaining unanswered questions may be.
If you spend enough time reading about education reform — particularly over the past few years — you get the sense that Washington, DC is the unwavering center and base for all that is new, all that is relevant, and all that is necessary to school improvement. NCLB. The U.S. Department of Education. The Institute of Education Sciences. The blob of representative education organizations. All, it seems, serve as the epicenter for real change in our educational system.