The Answer Sheet: About Teachers


Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 04/21/2014

What teachers really want

A nationally representative survey of teachers tells us.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 04/21/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 01:00 PM ET, 04/05/2014

What Americans like best about their favorite teachers

It may surprise you.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:00 PM ET, 04/05/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Education Policy, Teachers

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 03/31/2014

‘If only American teachers were smarter ’

Why the conventional wisdom about America’s teaching corps is wrong.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 03/31/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 03/25/2014

Why teachers’ salaries should be doubled -- now

Should teachers make less than skycaps?

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 03/25/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 03/15/2014

Ten clueless things people say to teachers -- and comebacks to throw right back

Like how easy their job is.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 03/15/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 09:42 AM ET, 03/11/2014

This took Teach For America 24 years to figure out?

TFA is experimenting with a one-year training program, rather than five weeks. What does this mean?

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:42 AM ET, 03/11/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 03/01/2014

Why most professional development for teachers is useless

Most of it doesn’t work because it isn’t what teachers really need.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 03/01/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 08:53 AM ET, 02/28/2014

A video that shows why teachers are going out of their minds

A video that shows a professional development session for Chicago teachers that will make you cringe.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:53 AM ET, 02/28/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 02/26/2014

They were once teachers

Jon Hamm, Sting, Cheryl Crow, etc.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 02/26/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 02/20/2014

#ResistTFA popular on Twitter

Student-led group pushing national campaign against Teach For America.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 02/20/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 11:14 AM ET, 02/12/2014

School board defies N.C. state law abolishing teacher tenure

The board plans to sue the state over the constitutionality of the law.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:14 AM ET, 02/12/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 11:10 AM ET, 02/05/2014

Yes, teacher morale really is low -- despite a report to the contrary

Why a think tank report saying teachers aren’t dissatisfied is wrong.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:10 AM ET, 02/05/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 01/21/2014

Why teachers can’t reach every child: a case study

There are situations beyond the control of even the best teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 01/21/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 01/17/2014

Bad news for teachers comes in an automated phone call

A bad plan for teacher in North Carolina.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 01/17/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 01/16/2014

Dying teacher makes remarkable journey to visit former students

He wrote a book, “The Priority List,” about his travels.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 01/16/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 04:31 PM ET, 01/10/2014

America’s oldest working teacher turns 100

Her school had a birthday party for her.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:31 PM ET, 01/10/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 09:45 AM ET, 12/31/2013

‘I would love to teach but ’

‘Education cannot be objectively measured... Our problems began when we came to that realization and instead of embracing it, decided to force it into a quantifiable box that is much too small and too much the wrong shape.’

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:45 AM ET, 12/31/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 12:11 PM ET, 12/25/2013

Why a teacher wrote ‘All I Want For Christmas (Is My Two Front Teeth)’

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:11 PM ET, 12/25/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 12/24/2013

‘All I want for Christmas is a teacher’

For students who have lost teachers in the recession, the wish is real.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 12/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 12/20/2013

Evaluating the evaluations of teacher education programs

The dean of an education school raises new questions.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 12/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 12:46 PM ET, 12/17/2013

Coalition to Duncan: Stop backtracking on teacher equity

Nearly 100 groups express serious concerns to education secretary.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:46 PM ET, 12/17/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 12:31 PM ET, 12/15/2013

How much teachers get paid -- state by state

Map shows data for 2013 that represent the estimated average annual salary of teachers in public elementary and secondary schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:31 PM ET, 12/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Education, Salaries, Teachers

Posted at 12:24 PM ET, 12/09/2013

Education activists protest, rally in scores of cities (despite the weather)

The ‘National Day of Action’ .’

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:24 PM ET, 12/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  educaton, School Reform, Standardized Test, teachers union

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 12/02/2013

Obama administration backtracks (again) on teacher equity

Administration goes backwards on ensuring all children have equal access to good teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 12/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 11/13/2013

Four things on which nearly all teachers agree

Beyond the Common Core State Standards.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 11/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 10:01 AM ET, 10/29/2013

When earning a D is ‘doing well’

Do you teach the course or do you the student? And what constitutes progress?

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:01 AM ET, 10/29/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 10:11 AM ET, 10/13/2013

‘There’s an insidious prejudice against older teachers’

It’s not just in the United States where veteran teachers are feeling a bit unwanted in the push for young recruits.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:11 AM ET, 10/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 05:02 AM ET, 09/23/2013

Q & A: School superintendents speak out on key issues

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:02 AM ET, 09/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Charters, etc., Superintendents, Teachers, Testing

Posted at 06:34 PM ET, 09/15/2013

Learning the pivotal moments in America’s civil rights struggle

Award-winning historian says he wrote the book to help young people learn history and citizenship.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:34 PM ET, 09/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  History, Taylor Branch's Book For Teachers

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 09/03/2013

Should teachers be parents first?

Do parents make better teachers?

By Valerie Strauss  |  07:02 AM ET, 09/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Ideas, Teachers

Posted at 10:42 AM ET, 08/30/2013

How much ‘value’ can teachers really add to student achievement?

The problem with teacher evaluation systems that ignore the reality of classrooms.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:42 AM ET, 08/30/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers, Value Added Methods, What They Can And Can't Do

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/27/2013

How the public is deceived about 'highly qualified teachers'

The federal government is continuing to support a practice of putting the least-prepared teachers in the highest need classrooms -

By Valerie Strauss  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/27/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  By Politicians and School Reformers, Teachers

Posted at 11:01 AM ET, 08/25/2013

Teacher: It's not enough to 'just' teach anymore

' And so I started to understand that my students needed a big sister in the classroom, but they needed an activist on their behalf outside of the classroom.'

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:01 AM ET, 08/25/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Becoming An Activist, Chicago Teachers

Posted at 08:01 AM ET, 08/19/2013

Why teachers feel so alone

It's not really about the coffee.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:01 AM ET, 08/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  An Isolating Profession, Teachers

Posted at 11:32 AM ET, 08/11/2013

Teacher who left: Why I am returning to school

The teacher who left the classroom and warned college professors about today's No Child Left Behind generation explains why he is going back.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:32 AM ET, 08/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Author Of Warning To Profs, Teachers

Posted at 04:02 AM ET, 08/01/2013

The problem with 'the problem with teachers'

The one profession from which we demand perfection is held in very low esteem.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:02 AM ET, 08/01/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  School Reform, Teachers

Posted at 04:02 AM ET, 07/24/2013

A teacher gets depressed: a real story in comics

"There is an epidemic of teacher depression, demoralization and stress in this country, and for a while I was part of it," a teacher writes.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:02 AM ET, 07/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  An Unusual Post, School Reform, Teachers and Depression

Posted at 08:01 AM ET, 07/16/2013

The world's most famous teacher blasts school reform

The California teacher, known around the globe, talks to us about his new book of advice for rookie and veteran teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:01 AM ET, 07/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  His New Book, Rafe Esquith, Teachers

Posted at 11:43 AM ET, 07/13/2013

How many 'nightmare' teachers are really out there?

And how do we know?

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:43 AM ET, 07/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers

Posted at 11:34 AM ET, 07/13/2013

Those who can .

... and those who can't...

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:34 AM ET, 07/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Bill Gates, Teachers, Teaching

Posted at 05:02 AM ET, 07/12/2013

How mad are some teachers? This mad

Educators who are sick and tired of being blamed for whatever woes exist in the public education system have banded together in a group named to show their disgust and defiance.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:02 AM ET, 07/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers, Unusually Named Group Formed

Posted at 05:03 AM ET, 06/25/2013

Where U.S. stands in education internationally — new report

The United States is behind in early childhood education but spends more on education than other countries.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:03 AM ET, 06/25/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Early Childhood Ed, etc., International Comparisons, Teachers

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 06/24/2013

'Life is not a multiple-choice test'

A 33-year veteran teacher who is resigning talks about how education has changed during his career.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 06/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  A Teacher's Last Day, Teachers, Tests

Posted at 03:44 PM ET, 06/20/2013

His last day of school, after 33 years

A Virginia teacher is retiring because he doesn't want to be part of the testing culture any more.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:44 PM ET, 06/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Protest Against Testing Culture, Teachers

Posted at 01:14 PM ET, 06/08/2013

'Stop this Madness': rap video on school reform

An Albany teacher says enough is enough -- in a rap song. Watch it. Read the lyrics.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:14 PM ET, 06/08/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Albany Teachers Protest, School Reform Protest

Posted at 09:03 AM ET, 05/26/2013

Award-winning Virginia teacher: 'I can no longer cooperate' with testing regime

After 33 years of teaching, he writes, 'I have had enough" of the high-stakes testing obsession.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:03 AM ET, 05/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Resigning Four Years From Full Retirement, Teachers

Posted at 09:37 PM ET, 05/23/2013

Teacher's resignation video: 'Everything I loved about teaching is extinct'

A veteran teacher eloquently explains how and why public education is on the wrong path.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:37 PM ET, 05/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  'I Won't Go Into Their Cage', Teachers

Posted at 03:15 PM ET, 05/21/2013

Quiet protest staged at Teachers College graduation

Some students quietly protested the choice of speaker Teachers College. Here's why.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:15 PM ET, 05/21/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Controversial Speaker, Teachers College

Posted at 11:04 AM ET, 05/18/2013

Fiery Chicago teachers union president reelected

Karen Lewis wins a new three-year term overwhelmingly.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:04 AM ET, 05/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Chicago Teachers, Protests Beginning Today

Posted at 11:10 AM ET, 05/15/2013

Letter to Obama: We need data on 'highly qualified' teachers

A coalition of education organizations writes to Obama expressing concern about who the federal government considers as a 'highly qualified teacher."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:10 AM ET, 05/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Highly Qualified Teachers, Teachers, Who Is and Who Isn't

Posted at 06:02 AM ET, 05/15/2013

What if Finland's great teachers taught in U.S. schools?

Why the U.S. emphasis on "teacher effectiveness" won't by itself really improve schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:02 AM ET, 05/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  3 Fallacies of 'Teacher Effectiveness', Teacher Effectiveness, Teachers

Posted at 12:01 PM ET, 05/11/2013

High school student tells off his teacher -- viral video

The following 90-second video was secretly recorded by a student at Duncanville High School in Texas as another student, Jeff Bliss, was telling off his world history teacher about the way she was teaching.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:01 PM ET, 05/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  In Texas, Teachers

Posted at 10:55 AM ET, 05/09/2013

Appreciating teachers (for a change)

Here are some thoughts through history about teachers and their impact, from Socrates to Jon Stewart.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:55 AM ET, 05/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Quotes Throughout History, Some Kind Words, Teachers

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 05/09/2013

School district closes before academic year is over

Teachers offered to work for free but liability issues got in the way.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 05/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Financial Crisis, School District Closes, Teachers Vote to Work For Free

Posted at 06:01 AM ET, 05/08/2013

What one teacher wants for Teacher Appreciation Week

Guess.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:01 AM ET, 05/08/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  An Unorthodox Request, Teachers, The State of Things

Posted at 06:02 AM ET, 05/07/2013

What schools need and what they don't need

What motivates students and teachers, and what kills motivation.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:02 AM ET, 05/07/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  and Motivation killers, Motivation, Motivation and What Kills Motivation, Teachers

Posted at 12:24 PM ET, 04/27/2013

A dozen things teachers won't tell parents (e.g., 'Kids dish on your secrets all the time')

What teachers would like to say to parents but don't: Please, no more mugs, frames, or stuffed animals, and a bunch more.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:24 PM ET, 04/27/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Teachers, We're Not Marriage Counselors

Posted at 06:02 AM ET, 04/23/2013

2013 National Teacher of Year: Public education not in crisis

The newly named Teacher of the Year, from Washington State, is not a big fan of all of President Obama's education policies.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:02 AM ET, 04/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Disagrees With Reformers on Evaluation, Teachers

Posted at 04:50 PM ET, 04/22/2013

2013 National Teacher of the Year named

Jeff Charbonneau, a high school science teacher from Zillah, Washington, was chosen as 2013 National Teacher of the Year.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:50 PM ET, 04/22/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  He Teaches Science, Teachers

Posted at 12:16 PM ET, 04/21/2013

Teacher: How my job went from great to infuriating

Here's a call for the end of high-stakes standardized tests from a teacher who chronicles how school reform forced him to change how he taught.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:16 PM ET, 04/21/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Effects of NCLB, No Child Left Behind, School Reform, Teachers, What School Reform Did

Posted at 08:02 AM ET, 04/15/2013

The right -- and wrong role -- for teachers

Put teachers in the right role and they can be effective. But even the best can't do much if they are in the wrong role.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:02 AM ET, 04/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Effectiveness, Teachers

Posted at 06:02 AM ET, 04/11/2013

Teacher: Why I won't quit despite 'inane' reform

A teacher explains why she won't give up the classroom even though many of her colleagues are.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:02 AM ET, 04/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Her Letter to Arne Duncan, School Reform, Teachers

Posted at 04:01 AM ET, 04/11/2013

What teachers need and reformers ignore: time to collaborate

Darling-Hammond: The reform impulse that gave rise to construction of new learning standards and assessments will only work if we invest in the capacity of educators to work together effectively.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:01 AM ET, 04/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Linda Darling-Hammond, School Reform, Teachers

Posted at 04:03 AM ET, 04/06/2013

Teacher's resignation letter: 'My profession no longer exists'

Increasingly teachers are speaking out against school reforms that they believe are demeaning their profession, and some are simply quitting because they have had enough.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:03 AM ET, 04/06/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  'Ill-Conceived Policies', Teachers

Posted at 11:54 AM ET, 03/19/2013

New nonsense about teachers

There's some new rhetoric from reformers about teachers and I'm already sick of it.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:54 AM ET, 03/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  About Teachers, Accountability, School Reform, Teachers

Posted at 01:08 AM ET, 02/05/2013

Jon Stewart tests Michelle Rhee, defends teachers (update with video)

on Stewart invited Michelle Rhee on "The Daily Show" Monday night and, while he didn't skewer her the way some Rhee critics would have liked, he kept challenging her about whether her brand of school reform unfairly targets teachers. He also said what Rhee and other reformers could take to be something of a slight: There has been "no real innovation in education since John Dewey."

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:08 AM ET, 02/05/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  He Challenges Reforms, He Defends Teachers, Jon Stewart, Michelle Rhee, Polite But Challenging, School Reform

Posted at 11:39 AM ET, 01/26/2013

Teacher boycott of standardized test in Seattle spreads

A boycott of Washington state's mandated standardized test by teachers at a Seattle school is spreading to other schools and winning support across the country, including from the two largest teachers' unions, parents, researchers and education activists.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:39 AM ET, 01/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Does President Obama Know?, Garifled Teachers, Standardized Test Revolt, Standardized Tests

Posted at 04:06 PM ET, 01/24/2013

California's Gov. Brown blasts state, federal education policy

"We seem to think," California Gov. Jerry Brown said in his State of the State Address today, "that education is a thing like a vaccine that can be designed from afar and simply injected into our children." Here are some of the other things he said in address on education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:06 PM ET, 01/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  California Gov. Brown, Calls for Trusting Teachers, Education Policy

Posted at 03:53 PM ET, 01/23/2013

Teacher may lose job over students with mouths taped shut

Some of you may remember when Michelle Rhee addressed a group of new teachers back in 2010 and disclosed that when she was a second-grade teacher at Baltimore's Harlem Park Elementary, her class-management skills were so bad that she taped the mouths of her students. The incident didn't have any effect on Rhee's career as an education reformer, but a teacher in Ohio isn't going to be so lucky.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:53 PM ET, 01/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  School Discipline, Teachers, Who Does That Sound Like?

Posted at 01:51 PM ET, 01/21/2013

Obama's three education references in inaugural speech

Here are the three references to education that President Obama made in his inaugural speech today.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:51 PM ET, 01/21/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Inaugural Speech, Schools and Teachers

Posted at 01:32 AM ET, 01/07/2013

Bloomberg likens teachers union to NRA

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, blaming the teachers union for stalled talks on a new teacher evaluation system, expressed his anger on his radio show by comparing the United Federation of Teachers to the National Rifle Association. Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, has asked him to publicly apologize.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:32 AM ET, 01/07/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Michael Bloomberg, teachers unions, Weingarten Demands Apology

Posted at 09:25 PM ET, 12/18/2012

Dear Gov. McDonnell: Allowing guns at school is 'a terrible idea'

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell said on WTOP radio's "Ask the Governor" show that it is time to have a public discussion about allowing officials on school campuses to carry guns. Here is a letter from two Virginia residents -- University of Virginia cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham and his wife, teacher Trisha Willingham -- starting that very discussion by telling McDonnell he is wrong.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:25 PM ET, 12/18/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Guns on Campus, Two Teachers Take on Virginia governor: Reject

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 12/18/2012

Have teachers changed their minds about reform?

Where do teachers stand on the current wave of school reform? Education writer Jay Mathews says teachers are now leaning in favor of reform. Researcher Matthew Di Carlo takes a look at that claim.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 12/18/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Like It or Not?, School Reform, Teachers

Posted at 10:34 AM ET, 11/16/2012

Chris Christie, Randi Weingarten (and Bradley Cooper) on new Newark teachers contract

Here's a video of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten talking -- along with actor Bradley Cooper of all people -- on the MSNBC program "Morning Joe" about the new teachers contract they negotiated in Newark.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:34 AM ET, 11/16/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Joe, On 'Morning Joe', Teacher Contract, Teacher Evaluation, teachers unions

Posted at 11:49 AM ET, 11/01/2012

Just Let Me Teach armbands taking off

Short summary of story

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:49 AM ET, 11/01/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Fed Up, School Reform, Teachers

Posted at 11:38 AM ET, 10/25/2012

Will teachers help decide presidential election?

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, there are about 3.3 million working public school teachers, more than 75 percent of them women. That's a lot of votes and a lot of campaign and get-out-the-vote supporters -- and that's why it is fair to wonder whether the education policies of President Obama and Mitt Romney could have an impact on the November election.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:38 AM ET, 10/25/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Obama vs. Romney, Presidential Election, Teachers

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 03/03/2011

Value-added assessment: Theory vs practice

Conflating the importance of teacher quality with the ability to measure it carries big risks, and can lead states, districts and the media to miss the trees for the forest.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 03/03/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Matthew Di Carlo, Teachers | Tags:  la times, la times teacher, los angeles times, los angeles times teachers, los angeles times teachers series, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, teachers, teachers and value-added, teachers database, value added

Posted at 03:31 PM ET, 03/02/2011

School reform through confrontation

Increasingly in state after state, battles over school reform have become confrontational: Wisconsin, Indiana, etc. What are the consequences?

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:31 PM ET, 03/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  collective bargaining rights, indiana, indiana collective bargaining, labor movement, no child left behind, teachers, wisconsin protests, wisconsin senators, wisconsin teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 03/02/2011

Obama's mistimed Miami school visit -- with Jeb Bush

What a tag team. At a time when Wisconsin teachers are protesting to keep their collective bargaining rights, President Obama is traveling to Florida to share a stage with the anti-union Jeb Bush, the former governor who led corporate-driven, standardized test-obsessed school reform and tried to reduce teachers union influence.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 03/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  School turnarounds/reform, Standardized Tests | Tags:  arne duncan, president obama, president obama and teachers, rick scott, scott walker, wisconsin protests, wisconsin teachers

Posted at 12:47 PM ET, 03/01/2011

Jon Stewart's hysterical defense of teachers

Jon Stewart (finally) does a hysterical bit about the preposterous attacks on the nation’s public school teachers, who have been accused by school “reformers” of being lazy, greedy and lousy at their jobs.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:47 PM ET, 03/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Laugh and cry, Teachers | Tags:  diane ravitch, jon stewart, school reform, the daily show, wisconsin protests, wisconsin teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 03/01/2011

Ravitch: 'A moment of national insanity'

Education historian Diane Ravitch writes: "The reality on the ground suggests that the corporate reform movement ... will set American education back, by how many years or decades is anyone's guess."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 03/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Education Secretary Duncan, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, diane ravitch, gates foundation, president obama, president obama and school reform, race to the top, school reform, teachers

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 02/27/2011

2 false claims that drive school reform

"Accountability" and "merit" are compelling concepts, especially when we are talking about adults who are charged with educating our children. But the concepts have been misused in school reform, writes an educator.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 02/27/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Accountability, Charter schools, Guest Bloggers, Performance pay, Teacher assessment | Tags:  accountability movement, charter schools, geoffrey canada, merit pay, michelle rhee, performance pay, school choice, teacher pay, teachers, waiting for superman

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 02/03/2011

The VIVA Project: What teachers told Duncan

More than 150 public school teachers put their heads together to devise solutions to problems that most affect their profession. Then they got to do something unusual with their conclusions: present them to Education Secretary Arne Duncan.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 02/03/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Education Secretary Duncan, Education Secretary Duncan, Education Secretary Duncan | Tags:  Arne Duncan, The Answer Sheet, VIVA project, education, education secretary duncan, evaluation and teachers, performance-based evaluation, school, teachers

Posted at 05:28 PM ET, 01/31/2011

Letter to President Obama: Who is a 'highly qualified' teacher?

More than 50 organizations sign a letter to President Obama about legislation that would codify a Bush-era regulation that allows states to label teachers as “highly qualified” when they are still in training – and, in many cases, just beginning training – in alternative route programs. alternative route programs.Bamajoin in

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:28 PM ET, 01/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  continuing resolution, definition of highly qualified, education groups, h.r. 3082, highly qualified, highly qualified teacher, letter to obama, president obama, public school teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/31/2011

Legislation: Teachers should grade parents

In the you-can’t-make-this-stuff-up category, a Florida (of course) state legislator is pushing legislation that would require some elementary school teachers to grade parents on how involved they are at their children's schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/31/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  bill for teachers to grade parents, florida bill teachers, florida legislature, florida schools, legislation teachers parents, parents, teachers, teachers grading parents

Posted at 01:07 PM ET, 01/29/2011

Study: Most high school biology teachers don’t endorse evolution

The central theory of biology is evolution yet a new study shows that most high school biology teachers are reluctant to endorse it in class.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:07 PM ET, 01/29/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Science, Science | Tags:  biology, biology teachers, charles darwin, creationism, darwin, evolution, evolutionary biology, high school biology, high school science, intelligent design, study on evolution

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/26/2011

Things I’m sick of hearing

It’s time for school reformers to find new ways to attack their critics. It’s getting tiring hearing the same old refrains, which go something like this.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/26/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Achievement gap, Achievement gap, Achievement gap, Achievement gap, Achievement gap | Tags:  charter schools, data-driven reform, michelle rhee, president obama, school reform, standardized tests, teachers unions

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/25/2011

Teachers and nanny cams: Compliance vs. trust

Are "nanny cams" in classrooms a great way to evaluate how well teachers do their jobs, or are they manifestations of the notion that we simply don't trust teachers?

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/25/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teacher assessment, Teacher assessment, Teacher assessment | Tags:  evaluating teachers, gates foundation, gates foundation and met project, met project, teacher assessment, videotaping teachers

Posted at 12:35 PM ET, 01/21/2011

Say it isn’t so on IMPACT, Mayor Gray

Here’s why I was so disappointed to a plan by D.C. schools officials to have the flawed IMPACT teacher evaluation system reviewed by a Harvard think tank.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:35 PM ET, 01/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  d.c. schools, edulabs, harvard research, harvard thinktank, harvard university, mayor gray, mayor vincent gray, merit pay for teachers, michelle rhee, performance pay, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation

Posted at 05:36 PM ET, 01/20/2011

Pensions for teachers vs. chancellors

It seems fair to note that after making a public stink about the awfulness of pensions for public school teachers, former New York City Schools chancellor Joel Klein has himself accepted a $34,000 pension check.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:36 PM ET, 01/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  chancellor klein, joel klein, klein pension, new york city schools, pensions, ponzi schemes, schools chancellor, teachers pensions

Posted at 11:11 AM ET, 01/20/2011

Giving guns to teachers: A Nebraska legislator submits bill

It was inevitable that someone would push a plan to allow teachers to pack concealed guns, and now, someone has.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:11 AM ET, 01/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Student Life, Student Life, Student Life | Tags:  gun legislation, gun rights, guns, guns in schools, nebraska legislation, teachers and guns

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/18/2011

Videotaping teachers the right way (not the Gates way)

A teacher describes what he says is the right way to videotape teachers to help them improve and explains why he thinks a Gates-funded videotaping project is taking the wrong approach.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  evaluating teachers, gates foundation, gates funded project, gates project and teachers, how to evaluate teachers, larry ferlazzo, teacher assessment, teachers, teachers and gates foundation, videotaping teaches

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 01/14/2011

The biggest flaw in Gates value-added study

Were the conclusions of a major Gates Foundation study on value-added measures to evaluate teachers predetermined?

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 01/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  MET project, MET study, assessing teachers, bill gates, bill gates foundation, gates foundation, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, value-added, value-added measures

Posted at 11:01 AM ET, 01/13/2011

New analysis challenges Gates study on value-added measures

A new analysis challenges a Gates Foundation study said to support the validity of value-added measures to evaluate teachers by using students' standardized test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:01 AM ET, 01/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Research, Research | Tags:  bill gates, gates foundation, gates foundation study, gates-funded research, how to evaluate teachers, teacher assessment, value-added, value-added measures

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 01/12/2011

The big 5: A teacher's translation guide for policymakers

Those hoping for educator buy-in on the next big education reform idea should first consult this translation guide , which explains some catchphrases and buzzwords that set off warning bells for teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 01/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  edu-speak, education buzzwords, education policy, educational rigor, failure is not an option, paradigm shift, research-based methods, rick hess, roxanna elden, teachers

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 01/09/2011

How to be taken seriously as a reformer (don't be an educator)

In the current upside-down world of education policy, there's one foolproof strategy for being taken seriously as a reformer: Make sure you're not an educator. Here, an educator writes about what counts -- and what SHOULD count -- in the school reform debate.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:30 AM ET, 01/09/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  Illiinois schools, Performance Counts, bill gates, eli broad, jeb bush, mark zuckerberg, obama and schools, obama daughters and school, oprah, performance counts, president obama and daughters, school reform, sidwell and obama, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teachers

Posted at 11:15 AM ET, 01/06/2011

NCLB's 9th anniversary: 'Will there be anything we will need to remember after the test?'

Nine years ago this week president Bush signed into law the No Child Left Behind Act. Take a look at what it wrought.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:15 AM ET, 01/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  congress and nclb, esea, esea reauthorization, national education association, nclb, nclb reauthorization, no child left behind, standardized testing, teachers unions

Posted at 01:36 PM ET, 01/03/2011

America’s disdain for its children

Americans don’t really think very much of their children. Not really. Just take a look at the world of education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:36 PM ET, 01/03/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Charter schools, Charter schools, Charter schools, Charter schools | Tags:  charter schools, children, poverty, standardized tests, teacher evaluation, teachers

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 01/03/2011

The "bad teacher" bogeyman and its consequences

An educator dissects how the teaching profession is being attacked and what the consequences are for the country.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 01/03/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody | Tags:  anthony cody, assessing teachers, bad teachers, effective teachers, eric hanushek, school reform, standardized tests

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/28/2010

Ravitch takes stock of education in 2010

Education historian Diane Ravitch looks back at the education world of 2010.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  diane ravitch, education policy, teacher assessment, teachers

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010

Test scores can't prove whether teacher experience matters

People such as Bill Gates and Arne Duncan who say teacher experience doesn't matter much are relying on standardized test scores for evidence, even though the tests fail to provide adequate evidence for drawing such a conclusion.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evalution, teachers, test scores

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010

Congress approves weird definition of 'highly qualified’ teachers

So they’ve gone ahead and done it. U.S. legislators have passed legislation that includes a provision that will turn into law a definition of a “highly qualified” teachers that would include people with only a few weeks of training.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  congress, continuing resolution, highly qualified teachers, teachers

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 12/21/2010

How a teachers' union actually helped kids (not just adults)

You've probably heard a lot about how teacher unions are obstacles to meaningful school reforms, but you probably have NOT heard about this remarkable union-involved success story in California.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 12/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody | Tags:  academic performance index, achievement gap, api, california schools, california teachers association, qeia, standardized tests, teachers union

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/21/2010

So you want to be a teacher?

Student: I really want to become an elementary school teacher. Teacher: Thank God. Student: I know. There is such a shortage of good teachers. Teacher: No. I meant there is still time to save you. A video that will make you laugh and cry, and some of my favorite dialogue.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Laugh and cry, Laugh and cry | Tags:  fox show, glee, glee on fox, prison break, so you want to be a teacher, teacher shortage, teachers, teachers and glee

Posted at 12:29 PM ET, 12/20/2010

A 'highly qualified' gift from Congress to Teach for America -- UPDATED

Is a teacher still in training "highly qualified?" Some of our legislators think so.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:29 PM ET, 12/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Congress, Congress | Tags:  CR, continuing resolution, education department, highly qualified teachers, renee v. duncan, teach for america, teachers, tom harkin

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 12/20/2010

Willingham: When teachers speak unwelcome truths about your child

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham writes about why parents should listen to their child's teachers -- especially when they don't like what they hear.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:30 AM ET, 12/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  daniel willingham, parents, report cards, teachers

Posted at 10:15 AM ET, 12/19/2010

'Burn and churn' among charter school principals

Seventy-one percent of charter school principals expect to leave their posts within five years, according to a new study. So what’s the big deal about entering and exiting charter school principals?

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:15 AM ET, 12/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Charter schools, Charter schools, Charter schools, Charter schools | Tags:  charter school principals, charter school teachers, charter schools, larry cuban, principal burnout, principals, school reform

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 12/18/2010

Will firing 5-10 percent of teachers make us Finland?

Michelle Rhee and Bill Gates like to say that our public schools would become high-performing if we only fired the bottom 5-10 percent of teachers. Here's an examination of that notion.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 12/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Research, Research, Research, Research | Tags:  assessing teachers, bill gates, eric hanushek, evaluating teachers, finland, michelle rhee, shankar blog, teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/13/2010

A Felliniesque education story

A veteran teacher writes that if today's education debate seems Felliniesque, don’t worry; you have not lost your senses. "What is apparent, however, is that the people who run the show have."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  david steiner, fellini, how to assess teachers, merryl tisch, new york board of education, nyc schools, releasing test scores, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teachers, test scores released

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/10/2010

Valerie vs. Jay on Teach for America, KIPP, etc.

My friend and colleague Jay Mathews, the most knowledgeable education reporter ever, challenged me to a debate. It evolved into a discussion about Teach for America. Here it is.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/10/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  education programs, education schools, jay mathews, kipp, mathews strauss debate, teach for america, teach for america debate, teacher education, teachers, valerie strauss

Posted at 02:10 PM ET, 12/09/2010

Teachers: What we need to do to fix schools

Fourteen teachers from urban schools around the country worked for a year to study how to improve troubled schools. Here are the results.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:10 PM ET, 12/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers, Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  larry ferlazzo, quality teachers, school reform, teacher assessment, teacher development, teacher planning, teachers, teachers leadership network, urban schools, urban teachers

Posted at 02:00 PM ET, 12/09/2010

Teachers: How much more can we take?

Established, expert teachers tell their personal stories about how the joy is going out of their profession and why they are thinking the previously unthinkable: getting out.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:00 PM ET, 12/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  teachers, teaching profession, urban schools, urban teachers, veteran teachers

Posted at 03:29 PM ET, 12/08/2010

Absent teachers reserve 'crisis' created by Klein, Bloomberg, union

A teacher explains how all sides are responsible for the mess surrounding New York City's "absent teacher reserve: "If this self-inflicted "crisis" were given to a business management class as a case study, it's likely that they would conclude that the negotiators on both sides of the table were idiots."

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:29 PM ET, 12/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  cathie black, cathleen black, joel klein, new york city schools, nyc schools, teacher assessment, teacher tenure, teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/07/2010

Assessing teachers without fetishizing test-based reforms

An educator writes that policymakers are fetishizing student scores on standardized tests and using them as a crutch rather than turning to sensible solutions to improve public schools. There are better ways to assess teacher quality, he says.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  assessing teachers, los angeles times, no child left behind, race to the top, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, test scores, value added

Posted at 01:52 PM ET, 12/05/2010

When teachers are their own worst enemies

An educator/author argues that teachers, however unwittingly, helped create the accountability movement that is now "choking" them.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:52 PM ET, 12/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  accountability movement, california standards test, common core standards, common standards, criterion-based tests, public schools, school reform, standardized test, standards movement, teachers

Posted at 10:11 AM ET, 12/04/2010

Meier: Partisan mindsets and teacher collegiality

Veteran educator Deborah Meier writes about partisan mindset in education, and she asks whether there are institutions and publications today that are built around deep respect for the intelligence and inventiveness of teachers -- and kids.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:11 AM ET, 12/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  collaboration, deb meier, deborah meier, diane ravitch, teach for america, teachers, teachers and collaboration

Posted at 01:30 PM ET, 12/02/2010

A system to tell how your kid is doing in school

Here's an assessment that can help parents figure out how well their kids are doing in school. And students can use it themselves if they are so inclined.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:30 PM ET, 12/02/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  how kids learn, learning, parents, report cards, teachers, teaching and learning

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 12/01/2010

First blame the teachers, then the parents

An educator warns that after teachers have been sufficiently scapegoated for the troubled public education system, parents will be next. And she offers an alternate framework for which to reform schools, one of responsibility rather than phony accountability.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 12/01/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  accountability, arne duncan, department of education, school reform, teachers

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 11/30/2010

Ravitch answers Gates

Bill Gates, in an article by Jonathan Alter of Newsweek, poses some questions to education historian Diane Ravitch, who Alter inexplicably calls the Microsoft founder's "chief adversary." Here she answers Gates' questions.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 11/30/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  bill gates, charter schools, diane ravitch, jonathan alter, microsoft, newsweek, school reform, teachers

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 11/24/2010

The mismatch between Duncan's words, actions

A veteran teacher writes an open letter to Education Secretary Arne Duncan, saying that the mismatch between Duncan's words and actions makes "a real consensus impossible."

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 11/24/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody | Tags:  anthony cody, arne duncan, education secretary, evaluating teachers, school reform, standardized tests, teacher assessment, value-added

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 11/23/2010

A new mess at Central Falls High in Rhode Island

Things aren’t going well at Central Falls High, the Rhode Island school that became famous last spring when all of the teachers were fired and President Obama praised the “accountability” move.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 11/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  School turnarounds/reform | Tags:  arne duncan, central falls, central falls high school, president obama, school reform, school transformation, school turnaround, teachers

Posted at 01:16 PM ET, 11/21/2010

Teacher runs into power of Teach for America

A teacher writes about difficulty finding a job in an urban school district because of choosing traditional training rather than Teach for America or a similar alternative program.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:16 PM ET, 11/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  diane ravitch, teach for america, teacher training, teachers, wendy kopp

Posted at 12:46 PM ET, 11/20/2010

Why teaching experience really matters

Bill Gates just urged school districts and states to stop rewarding teachers for their experience in the classroom and/or advanced education degrees. Arne Duncan makes the same argument. But evidence shows that teaching experience DOES matter.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:46 PM ET, 11/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, bill gates, class size, does experience matter, education department, education secretary duncan, lowering class size, raising class size, research on class size, research on teaching experience, school reform, schools, shankar blog, standardized tests, teacher experience, teacher pay, teacher quality, teacher salaries, teachers, teaching experience, value added

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 11/18/2010

Teachers give 'Superman' director an earful

"Waiting for Superman" film director Davis Guggenheim asks teachers to tell him what they about his education film -- the one that scapegoats teachers -- and they let him have it.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 11/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody | Tags:  anthony cody, attack on teachers, charter schools, davis guggenheim, superman, teachers, teachers unions, waiting for superman

Posted at 09:04 AM ET, 11/17/2010

What Ravitch told KIPP and Teach for America

Education historian Diane Ravitch gave a speech at Rice University about school reform in which she directly challenged officials from Teach for America and the Knowledge Is Power Program who were present -- the very people who had invited her.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:04 AM ET, 11/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  arne duncan, charter schools, diane ravitch, finland, finland education, kipp, knowledge is power program, nclb, no child left behind, obama school reform, president obama, rice university, secretary duncan, teach for america, teachers, tfa

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 11/17/2010

The sad story of an L.A. school labeled 'failing'

A teacher at a Los Angeles middle school writes about why her school was just declared to be "failing" and why the designation is patently unfair: "In today’s world of testing and sanctions, best efforts are irrelevant if scores do not increase at a fast enough rate."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 11/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  failing schools, la schools, los angeles unified school district, public school choice, schools, teacher assessment, teachers, value-added measurement

Posted at 10:57 AM ET, 11/16/2010

Experts: How to overhaul teacher ed (and my problem with their report)

A major report released today calls for overhauling teacher education programs. It offers a number of strong recommendations, but, unfortunately, continues a reliance on standardized tests.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:57 AM ET, 11/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests | Tags:  blue ribbon panel, blue ribbon panel report, education programs need overhauling, effective teachers, preparing teachers, report on clinical practice, report on teacher education, report on teacher preparation, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teacher ed, teacher education, teacher education programs, teacher education through clinical practice, teacher preparation, teacher quality

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 11/16/2010

Teacher: ‘Maybe it is time for me to go’

A teacher looks back on a quarter-century in the classroom and says that, for the first time, she is being told what to teach, how to teach it and when, preventing her from helping her students in the way she knows they need. "Hold me accountable, but let me do it my way," she says.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 11/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  literacy, literacy blocks, race to the top, teachers, veteran teachers

Posted at 11:55 AM ET, 11/13/2010

Teacher: Data, my new dirty word

A teacher explains how an obsession with data has led to the redefinition of teaching and learning: "Teaching itself has become redefined as generating, collecting, and using data, and learning has become redefined as the curve connecting data points. This is a fundamental shift in how educators think, talk, and go about educating our children. Unfortunately, it is not a shift that serves anyone but the data-collectors very well."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:55 AM ET, 11/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  data, education, educational data, mad math minutes, mad minutes, nclb, no child left behind, school reform, schools, teachers, teaching and learning, test data

Posted at 09:40 AM ET, 11/12/2010

What’s wrong with releasing names and scores?

A teacher writing about plans by the NYC Department of Education to release teachers’ names and value-added ratings to the press, says: "Is this sheer stubbornness on the part of school leaders, or do they not understand the harm this would cause?"

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:40 AM ET, 11/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  diana senechal, la times, la times teachers, new york city schools, new york times, new york times teachers, nyc doe, school reform, schools and teachers, teacher assessment, teacher evaluation, teachers, the los angeles times, value added, value added assessment

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 11/08/2010

A public school teacher’s distress

A school teacher writes a letter about why she fears for the future of public education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 11/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  charter schools, diane ravitch, no child left behind, school reform, tax levy, taxes, teachers, toldeo schools

Posted at 11:19 AM ET, 11/04/2010

Some good news for California teachers

Public schools teachers in California got some good news from the midterm elections: Their candidate won in the race for state Superintendent of Public Instruction is still good news.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:19 AM ET, 11/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  california, california teachers, cft, charter schools, dfer, diane ravitch, gloria romero, state superintendent, tom torlakson

Posted at 09:56 AM ET, 11/02/2010

What other countries are really doing in education

For a while education mavens keep pointing to other countries as models for education reform. Let's look at what some of them are really doing. Guess what? It's not what we're doing.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:56 AM ET, 11/02/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, education finland, education singapore, finland, finland schools, finland teachers, singapore, teachers

Posted at 09:45 AM ET, 11/01/2010

Teacher apologizes for achievement gap: 'My fault'

An eighth grade Earth sciences teacher, surrounded by family and friends, tearfully admits that the achievement gap is his fault. Yes, it's fake news. You'll laugh and cry.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:45 AM ET, 11/01/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  achievement gap, fake news, teachers

Posted at 03:55 PM ET, 10/31/2010

The importance of being unprincipled

Teacher Larry Ferlazzo writes that sometimes, sticking to our principles isn't the right thing to do, and suggests that we sometimes aim to be "unprincipled."

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:55 PM ET, 10/31/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  larry ferlazzo, teachers, waiting for superman

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/29/2010

And now, a tragicomic conversation on 'differentiation'

If you liked a video I posted this week showing a funny but scary conversation about collaborative planning and teaching, here's a different one, this on "differentiation." Watch the new one even if you didn't like the first one.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  collaboration, differentiation, education video, planning meeting, school reform, teacher collaboration, teachers, you tube

Posted at 01:50 PM ET, 10/28/2010

Poll: How science should be taught

A national survey released today shows that big percentages of science teachers and parents believe that kids should learn science with hands-on experiments but only 22 percent of teachers feel they have the resources needed to conduct them.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:50 PM ET, 10/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Science | Tags:  how to teach science, parent involvement, science, science lessons, science teachers, teaching, teaching science

Posted at 03:36 PM ET, 10/24/2010

Saving public education: the 'Dolly Solution'

An educator proposes a new model for school reform: cloning, which, in three easy steps, is the surest route for improving public education. It makes perfect sense.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:36 PM ET, 10/24/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, cloning, dolly parton, dolly the sheep, education department, george washington, jaime escalante, led zeppelin, no child left behind, public schools, race to the top, school reform, schools, stairway to heaven, stand and deliver, teachers, ted williams

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 10/23/2010

Building teacher accountability from the ground up

Educator Anthony Cody spells out the practices that help improve instruction and that build teacher accountability into schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 10/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  accountability, anthony cody, national certified teacher, school reform, teacher assessment, teacher magazine, teachers

Posted at 12:27 PM ET, 10/21/2010

On school reform, by Philadelphia's mayor and superintendent

Philadelphia's mayor and schools superintendent write: "To read the news coming out of Washington, D.C., you’d think the only way to reform public schools is by firing teachers, closing schools, and battling it out in the media. Not so."

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:27 PM ET, 10/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arlene ackerman, engagement, michael nutter, parent involvement, philadelphia schools, school reform, teachers, teachers union

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/21/2010

English teacher: Data can drive us down wrong road

An English teacher writes: "Strict adherence to data-driven instruction can lead schools to push aside science and social studies to drill students on isolated reading benchmarks.... It is difficult to teach kids to read well if they don’t learn to enjoy reading. It is impossible to teach kids to read well while denying them the knowledge they need to make sense of complex material. Following the data often forces teachers to do just that."

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Learning, Learning, Learning | Tags:  compare and contrast, fcat, florida comprehensive assessment test, standardized tests, teachers, teaching, test questions

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/20/2010

The Chamber of Commerce's flawed 'Superman' school reform guide

In a shameless act of movie flacking, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce just published a guide for business leaders on school reform that is linked to and reinforces the skewed vision of public education portrayed in the movie “Waiting for Superman.”

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  School turnarounds/reform | Tags:  batman, business leaders, business leaders and school reform, chamber of commerce, charter schools, clark kent, davis guggenheim, effective teachers, finland and teachers, reform guide, school reform, superman, superman and clark kent, teach for america, waiting for superman, what superman would do

Posted at 04:00 PM ET, 10/19/2010

Missing from reform debate: The power of caring

The founder of YouthBuild programs writes: "We are woefully off the mark when the conversation is all about superintendents and principals needing power to fire inept teachers and not about using their power to create a caring, learning community."

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 PM ET, 10/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  curriculum, harlem schools, learning process, parent involvement, school reform, teachers development, youthbuild

Posted at 11:25 AM ET, 10/18/2010

Willingham: Should teachers be so important?

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham writes: "Teacher quality is the most important in-school factor that influences kids’ schooling. I’m not so sure that’s a good thing."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:25 AM ET, 10/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  daniel willingham, education, school reform, schools, student achievement, teachers

Posted at 11:34 AM ET, 10/16/2010

Supt. Ackerman's critique of 'manifesto'

Philadelphia Schools Supt. Arlene Ackerman writes why she doesn't agree with the "reform manifesto" approved by 15 other big city school district chiefs.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:34 AM ET, 10/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  School turnarounds/reform, School turnarounds/reform, School turnarounds/reform | Tags:  arlene ackerman, charter schools, joel klein, manifesto, michelle rhee, school reform, teachers

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/14/2010

Radical idea: Public schools aren't an awful mess

A longtime educator writes about public education: "Backed into a corner, beat up and wildly uneven in quality, yes." But an unmitigated disaster? No.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  ariana huffington, arne duncan, gerald bracey, guest bloggers, hurricane katrina, katrina nation, nancy flanagan, pisa, public education, school reform, teachers, waiting for superman, wendy puriefoy

Posted at 11:55 AM ET, 10/10/2010

How to save schools right now: Let teachers teach

A teacher writes: "We don’t have to wait for Superman to save our public schools. We can save our schools ourselves. .... The answer can be stated in seven words that even a child could understand: Train teachers well -- then let them teach."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:55 AM ET, 10/10/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  dangerous minds, louanne johnson, superman, teachers, waiting for superman

Posted at 02:55 PM ET, 10/09/2010

The bankrupt 'school reform manifesto' of Rhee, Klein, etc.

There are so many things wrong with the new “school reform manifesto” signed by 16 school district chiefs -- including New York’s Joel Klein and Washington’s Michelle Rhee -- and published in The Washington Post that it is hard to know where to start.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:55 PM ET, 10/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  School turnarounds/reform, School turnarounds/reform | Tags:  baltimore contract, baltimore schools, council of great city schools, joel klein, klein and rhee, michael casserly, michelle rhee, reform document, reform manifesto, school manifesto, teachers, teachers and assessment, washington post

Posted at 09:29 AM ET, 10/08/2010

Still trying to make sense of NBC's Teacher Town Hall

A special education teacher who attended NBC's Teacher Town Hall is still trying to make sense out of the event, saying that it did not turn out as advertised.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:29 AM ET, 10/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  education nation, nbc, school reform, teachers

Posted at 12:03 PM ET, 10/06/2010

Down the education rabbit hole

David B. Cohen writes, referring to Lewis Carrol's "Alice's Adventures: "Much of the education reform debate has been down the rabbit hole for a while, but I keep expecting people to act with some common sense."

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:03 PM ET, 10/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  bush initiative, bush institute, education nation, newsweek, principals, school reform, teachers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 10/06/2010

Ravitch: Why teachers should never be rated by test scores

Education historian Diane Ravitch writes: "...Value-added assessment should not be used at all. Never. It has a wide margin of error. It is unstable. A teacher who is highly effective one year may get a different rating the next year depending on which students are assigned to his or her class. Ratings may differ if the tests differ. To the extent it is used, it will narrow the curriculum and promote teaching to tests. Teachers will be mislabeled and stigmatized. Many factors that influence student scores will not be counted at all."

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 10/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  diane ravitch, how to assess teache, l.a. times, l.a. times database, los angeles times, ravitch book, rigoberto ruelas, school reform, teacher and suicide, teacher assessment, teacher commits suicide, teacher database, teacher evaluation, teachers, test scores, value added

Posted at 03:26 PM ET, 10/04/2010

What public school teachers really need

A teacher at the SEED Public Charter School in Washington D.C., which was featured in the film "Waiting for Superman," explains what makes his school work for teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:26 PM ET, 10/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  center for teaching quality, certified teachers, charter schools, dan brown, davis guggenheim, guest bloggers, school reform, seed charter, seed public charter school, seed school, superman, superman film, waiting for superman

Posted at 01:03 PM ET, 09/26/2010

Will Rhee be a footnote in school reform history?

Like Hugh Scott, the first African American superintendent in Washington D.C., Michelle Rhee will be a footnote in a doctoral dissertation on the D.C. schools a generation from now, educator Larry Cuban writes.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:03 PM ET, 09/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  $100 million and newark, $100 million newark schools, adrian fenty, gray and schools, larry cuban, mark zuckerberg, michelle rhee, newark schools, rhee and fenty, rhee and vincent gray, school reform, teacher assessment, teachers, will rhee stay, zuckerberg and newark

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 09/21/2010

The danger of blaming schools for economic woes

Principal George Wood writes: "It’s funny how the start of school also marks the unofficial start of the fall campaign season. What isn’t funny is how so many politicians running for office blame kids for our faltering economy."

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 09/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  George Wood, George Wood, George Wood | Tags:  a nation at risk, blaming schools, blaming teachers, george wood, gulf oil spill, public schools, schools and economy

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 09/20/2010

What Americans really think about public schools

In an era of unrelenting bashing of public education by “experts,” a new poll shows that most Americans actually like their neighborhood public schools -- though they don’t seem to like public schools in general -- and they have trust in teachers. And the Obama administration’s education agenda gets mixed reviews in the 2010 Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup poll.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 09/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Research, Research, Research | Tags:  content standards, failing schools, gallup poll, kappan magazine, obama and education, obama and school reform, pdk poll, phi delta kappa, public schools, school funding, standardized tests, teacher quality, teachers and pay, teachers and respect, what americans think about education

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 09/20/2010

Has education reform jumped the shark? A teacher says 'yes'

A veteran teacher looks at recent events in the education world and concludes that yes, indeed, education reform has jumped the shark, and the signs of its collapse are everywhere.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 09/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  anthony cody, arne duncan, bill gates, education nation, gates on oprah, michelle rhee, nbc education nation, oprah, race to the top, rhee on oprah, teachers and reform, teachers town hall

Posted at 05:30 PM ET, 09/16/2010

While we wait for ‘Superman,’ let's focus on teaching

he founding director of a center that fosters best teaching practices saw "Waiting for Superman" and writes: "Conventional thinking tells us the best way to improve teacher effectiveness is to remove the ineffective teachers and replace them with effective ones. No doubt, this strategy is needed. But if we’re going for a fundamental shift in what we expect from schools, then a wholesale cast change won’t be the fix we imagine. We’ll risk ending up with a new batch of well-intentioned, but improperly prepared players in a flawed system."

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:30 PM ET, 09/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Charter schools, Charter schools, Charter schools, Charter schools | Tags:  center for inspired teaching, firing teachers, how to fix schools, inspired teachers, inspired teaching, professional development, school reform, superman movie, teacher development, teachers, waiting for superman

Posted at 04:00 PM ET, 09/16/2010

Why 'Waiting for Superman' premiere was chilling

Something chilling happened at the Washington D.C. premiere of "Waiting for Superman" that involved Michelle Rhee and the A-list audience.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 PM ET, 09/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools | Tags:  adrian fenty, al franken, arne duncan, charter schools, d.c. schools, david axelrod, fenty and gray, george miller, melody barnes, michelle rhee, movie premiere, obama and refoms, obama reform, president obama and school reform, research and education, research on charter schools, rhee and gray, superman film, superman premiere, teachers and unions, vincent gray, waiting for superman, what will rhee do?, when will rhee leave?, who will replace rhee

Posted at 11:46 AM ET, 09/02/2010

How much power should we give to ed data?

A veteran teacher writes about what gets left out in today's education world where reformers are obsessed with "data" and test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:46 AM ET, 09/02/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  evaluating teachers, how to evaluate teachers, power of data, teacher assessment, value added, value added and teachers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 08/26/2010

Why the National Writing Project should be saved

If Arne Duncan supports classroom teachers as he says he does, then why, a highly certified teacher asks, does he want to stop funding the National Writing Project, the best professional development program this teacher has experienced in nearly 30 years of teaching?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 08/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  arne duncan, national board certified teachers, national writing project, professional development and teachers

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 08/25/2010

'Impossible' working conditions for teachers

Will Fitzhugh writes about a recent trip to Florida, where he did a workshop with teachers on student research papers -- and then realized that the teachers can't use what they learned in the classroom.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 08/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  class loads and teachers, class size, florida teachers, history papers, research papers, right to work state, teachers

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 08/23/2010

Willingham: 3 key factors in teacher evaluation (beyond the hype of value-added)

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham looks beyond the hype of "value added" models for teacher evaluation and pinpoints three key factors that should be considered.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 08/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  daniel willingham, factors in teacher evaluation, how to evaluate teachers, no child left behind, teacher evaluation, teacher evaluation systems, teachers and value added, value added systems

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 08/19/2010

Russo: The willy-nilly nature of teacher layoffs

Alexander Russo writes about the case of a highly certified, tenured teacher who is being laid off.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 08/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  alexander russo, chicago schools, little village high school, teachers and layoffs

Posted at 11:23 AM ET, 08/17/2010

Willingham: Big questions about the LA Times teachers project

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham explains why using value-added measures to judge the effectiveness of a teacher is a mistake, and says that the Los Angeles Times writers who helped evaluate more than 6,000 teachers in this fashion, "are either uniformed or disingenuous about the status of the value-added measures."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:23 AM ET, 08/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  daniel willingham, la times story, la times story on teachers, los angeles times and teachers, research and value added, teacher evaluation, value added evaluation, value added measures

Posted at 11:13 AM ET, 08/07/2010

Why you should be skeptical about standardized test scores

A Columbia University teacher writes about the problems with our faith our standardized test scores: "Yes, we 'just' need better tests. But creating better tests is very hard and very expensive. And in a system as vast and complex as ours, it’ll be tempting to continue using tests that can be graded quickly and that don’t look very different from the ones we now use. But without a radically different approach to standardized testing in this country, we are unlikely to get different results."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:13 AM ET, 08/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  in, obama and education, obama's education policies, rhe, rhee fires teachers, standardized test scores, using standardized tests for high stakes decisions

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 08/05/2010

Accountability in DCPS: Details from teacher's IMPACT report

Aaron Pallas, an education and sociology professor and a statistician who critiqued DCPS's IMPACT teacher evaluation system last week, responds to critics of that post and looks at new data from a teacher's report as he argues that DCPS continues to publicly misrepresent IMPACT's evaluation methods.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 08/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  IMPACT and d.c., d.c. teacher evaluations, d.c. teachers, dc schools and teachers, how to evaluate teachers, value added evaluations

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/29/2010

Study: Error rates high when student test scores used to evaluate teachers

I don’t understand all of a new statistical study about error rates when student test scores are used to evaluate teachers and schools, but I do get this: The rates are so high that they should give pause to even the most ardent admirers of such evaluation systems.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  error rates and value-added, evaluating teachers, high-stakes decisions and teacher evaluation, mathematica study, teacher evaluation, value-added measures

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 07/28/2010

Were some D.C. teachers fired based on flawed calculations?

A professor of sociology and education at Teachers College, Columbia University, argues that D.C. Public Schools botched the calculations that were used to decide to fire some of the 241 teachers let go last week.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:30 AM ET, 07/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  DC CAS, IMPACT evaluation system, d.c. public schools and teachers, d.c. schools, d.c. teachers fired, how rhee fired teachers, rhee and d.c. and fire and teachers, rhee fires teachers, value added and teachers, why rhee fired teachers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/14/2010

How we evaluate relief pitchers and teachers

How is it that we are better able to evaluate baseball players than we are teachers?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  baseball facts, bill james, evaluating baseball players, evaluating teachers, fplay, johan santana, teachers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/13/2010

The myth of teacher tenure

An education and law professor argues that getting rid of teacher tenure will not solve the problem of incompetent teachers or noncompetitive student achievement in the global marketplace

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  ayp and teachers, eliminating teacher tenure, eliminating tenure for teachers, myth of tenure, no child left behind and teachers, teacher tenure, teachers

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 07/12/2010

Teacher accountability schemes let teens off the hook -- Willingham

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham talks about students, their attitudes and whether teachers can be held solely or even primarily responsible for their academic achievement.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 07/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  attitudes and students, daniel willingham, factors in student achievement, main factor in student achievement, teachers and student achievement, teenagers and behavior, who is responsible for student achievement

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/12/2010

Bill Gates' troubling involvement in school reform

Bill Gates is surely smart and rich, but his involvement in public education is highly troubling for a number of reasons. Here's why.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  bill gates, bill gates and teachers, bill gates at aft convention, gates foundation and education, gates foundation and race to the top, gates speech to teachers, teachers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/11/2010

A new look at Teach for America

Here's a new look at the independent research on the effectiveness of Teach for America teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  research on teach for america, research on tfa, teach for america, teachers and attrition

Posted at 12:30 PM ET, 07/08/2010

Ravitch on teachers and her critics

Education historian Diane Ravitch brings down the house at a teachers convention and answers her critics.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:30 PM ET, 07/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  charter schools and research, death and life of great american school system, diane ravitch, ed week and ravitch, national education association and convention, nea convention, ravitch and nea, ravitch and teachers, ravitch and video, teachers convention

Posted at 03:30 PM ET, 07/07/2010

A tradeoff worth making for schools

A former longtime aide for Rep. David Obey disputes that Obey is "carrying water" for teachers unions by seeking a cut in Race to the Top to save teachers jobs.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:30 PM ET, 07/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  cutting race to the top, legislation on teachers jobs, no child left behind, obey and teachers, obey and teachers bill, race to the top, saving teachers jobs, scott lilly

Posted at 12:31 PM ET, 07/06/2010

Senators' logic for fighting cuts to Race to Top flawed

A letter that 13 senators wrote in opposition to proposed cuts to three of President Obama’s main education programs has some flawed reasoning.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:31 PM ET, 07/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Race to the Top, Race to the Top | Tags:  bayh letter, cutting race to the top, duncan and race to the top, legislation and teachers, legislation to save teachers jobs, obey and education bill, obey and teachers, race to the top and second round, race to the top and winners, race to the top applications, race to the top criteria

Posted at 03:31 PM ET, 06/25/2010

Extremism in school reform is not a virtue

A longtime educator says it is time to recognize the complexity of the challenges presented by ailing school districts and to avoid simplistic, extreme positions which seem so popular today.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:31 PM ET, 06/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  charter schools and teachers, colorado and teachers law, eliminating teacher tenure, merit pay and teachers, teacher tenure, teacher tenure and reform, teachers and accountability, teachers pay and test scores, value of teacher tenure

Posted at 12:26 PM ET, 06/25/2010

The long-lasting power of a great teacher

A colleague writes about one special high school teacher and the powerful connection they forged. He just learned of her death, and what she left for him.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:26 PM ET, 06/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  great teachers, great teaching, powerful learning experiences, teachers

Posted at 11:30 PM ET, 06/24/2010

Principal: How to REALLY turn around a school

A principal talks about how he and his staff successfully improved a school--but not in the way advocated by today's school reformers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 PM ET, 06/24/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  obama and school reform, race to the top, school reform, school restructuring, teachers, turning around schools

Posted at 05:30 AM ET, 06/22/2010

Ravitch to Obama: 'Change course before it is too late"

Education historian Diane Ravitch talks about meeting thousands of teachers and parents who are "unhappy, frustrated and demoralized" at the Obama administration's education policies. And she explains what she would tell President Obama if he gave her the chance.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:30 AM ET, 06/22/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  arne duncan, death and life of the great american school system, diane ravitch, diane ravitch's book, no child left behind, obama blueprint for reform, race to the top, teachers, teachers unions and reform

Posted at 05:30 AM ET, 06/20/2010

Teacher: 'Worst year in the classroom' in decades

A public school teacher describes the conditions under which he is being forced to teach.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:30 AM ET, 06/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers, Teachers | Tags:  board certified teacher, diane ravitch, race to the top, teachers

Posted at 01:58 PM ET, 06/17/2010

Randi Weingarten: Rhee is wrong

The teachers union president whom D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee highly praised in an op-ed article this week -- the one in which she tells New York schools boss Joel Klein that he has a lot to learn from hr -- is taking strong issue with Rhee’s advice to Klein.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:58 PM ET, 06/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  aft president randi weingarten, d.c. schools chancellor michelle rhee, d.c. teachers contract, michelle rhee and joel klein, randi weingarten and michelle rhee, rhee and klein, rhee gives advice to klein, rhee op-ed, weingarten and rhee, weingarten op-ed

Posted at 01:13 PM ET, 06/17/2010

Teachers cover Lady Gaga's 'Bad Romance'

Whoever said teachers don't know how to have fun haven't been to Holmes Middle School in Alexandria, Va. This week some of them treated kids to a dance performance of Lady Gaga's huge hit "Bad Romance."

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:13 PM ET, 06/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  bad romance lyrics, lady gaga, lady gaga and bad romance, teachers, teachers cover lady gaga, teachers sing "bad romance"

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 06/16/2010

Ravitch: 'Are we in an era of National Stupidity?'

Education historian Diane Ravitch looks at the accumulating evidence revealing how our "accountability policies are a great fraud," and asks: "Are we in an era of National Stupidity or National Insanity?"

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 06/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  Arne Duncan, Diane Ravitch, accountability and nclb, accountability movement, accountability policies, bridging differences, diane ravitch and deborah meier, holding teachers accountability, how to hold teachers accountable, narrowing the curriculum, president obama and education bluerpint, president obama and school reform, teachers and merit pay

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 06/14/2010

Rhee and her advice to NY: Hubris, or what?

In what could easily be seen as an astonishing act of hubris, D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee has offered a lot of unsolicited advice to New York City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, the man who recommended her to D.C. Mayor Adrian M. Fenty to run the city schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 06/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools | Tags:  michelle rhee and d.c. contract, michelle rhee and new york daily news, new d.c. teachers contract, rhee and advice and klein, rhee gives advice to klein, rhee's advice to klein

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 06/12/2010

New controversy at Rhode Island school

One of the two newly named principals at the Rhode Island school were all the teachers were fired and then rehired had on his resumé a serious exaggeration of student achievement in math at his former school.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 06/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  central falls high school, central falls school, obama and central falls, rhode island school, teachers fired, teachers rehired at rhode island school

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 06/08/2010

Teachers council blasts Arizona policy on accents

The National Council of Teachers of English has finally issued a condemnation of a policy in Arizona in which teachers who speak English with a heavy accent or exhibit poor grammar are being removed from classes for students still learning English.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 06/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  arizona, arizona audits teachers with accents, arizona teachers, ell learners in arizona, english language learners in arizona, national council of teachers of english, teachers, teachers with accents

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 06/08/2010

Study: N.Y. teacher performance pay program flops

On the heels of a study about an ineffective program in Chicago linking student test scores to teacher pay, here's another one, with the same results, from a New York program. Do you see a pattern?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 06/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  No Child Left Behind, No Child Left Behind, No Child Left Behind | Tags:  d.c. teachers contract, merit pay, michelle rhee, nclb, performance pay, teachers, teachers performance pay, test scores and pay

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 05/27/2010

How Arizona is checking teachers’ accents

More than 1,500 teachers in Arizona have already been evaluated to see if they can speak English fluently, and some have been found to have problems, a Department of Education official said.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 05/27/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Learning | Tags:  arizona and teachers, arizona and teachers with accents, arizona monitors teachers with accents, arizona schools, arizona teachers, teachers and accents, teachers and accents and arizona

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 05/25/2010

Concern over accented teachers not original to Arizona

The state of Arizona has gotten a lot of attention lately for its decision to remove teachers who speak with pronounced foreign accent and/or whose speech is ungrammatical from classrooms with students learning to speak English. But the idea wasn’t original to the Arizona Board of Education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 05/25/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Learning | Tags:  arizona and accents, arizona remove teachers with accents, foreign accents and teachers, research on teachers with accents, teachers with accents

Posted at 02:58 PM ET, 05/23/2010

Charters vs. public schools: Behind the numbers

In a New York Times magazine article today, writer Steven Brill compares a charter school in Harlem with a traditional public school which is housed in the same building. He says the student populations are the same. They aren't.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:58 PM ET, 05/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Charter schools | Tags:  brill and story about unions, brill's story and charter schools, charter schools, steven brill story, the new york times and brill story, the teachers unions last stand

Posted at 11:15 AM ET, 05/20/2010

Obama’s mistake with technology in ed reform

The Obama administration's plan for rewriting No Child Left Behind makes the mistake of relegating technology – a catalyst for all educational reform efforts for the 21st century – to just an “additional, cross-cutting priority.”

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:15 AM ET, 05/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Technology, Technology | Tags:  blueprint for reform, obama and blueprint for reform, obama and mistake, obama and nclb, obamas, teachers college, teachers college at columbia university, technology in education, technology in schools

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 05/20/2010

Charters should leave D.C. teachers contract alone

Public charter school advocates are, not surprisingly, upset about a proposed new contract that will significantly boost the salaries of unionized teachers in traditional D.C. public schools. But D.C. school system officials have it right: They shouldn’t be.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 05/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools, D.C. Schools | Tags:  charter schools, d.c. charter schools, d.c. public schools, d.c. teachers contract, michelle rhee, teachers contract, washington teachers union

Posted at 09:14 AM ET, 05/17/2010

The real world of teachers

How much do teachers earn? Here's a look at one state, in which teachers are among the highest paid in the nation, but who still earn on average less than firefighters, cops, engineers and business middle managers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:14 AM ET, 05/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  how much do teachers earn?, new jersey teachers salaries, salaries, star-ledger, teacher earnings, teacher salaries, teachers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 05/17/2010

Why Obama, Duncan should have kept quiet about Rhode Island teachers

Lo and behold, several months after every teacher at a low-performing Rhode Island high school was fired so the school could get a fresh start, and after Education Secretary Arne Duncan praised the firings as an act of “courage,” and after President Obama declared that the firings showed a “sense of accountability,” well, after all of that, the teachers have been rehired.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 05/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  No Child Left Behind, No Child Left Behind | Tags:  central falls high school, central falls teachers, rhode island teachers rehired, teachers and rhode island, teachers fired in rhode island, teachers rehired

Posted at 02:52 PM ET, 05/16/2010

Tentative agreement reached on Rhode Island teachers

The teachers at Central Falls High School in Rhode Island who were all recently fired may get to keep their jobs after all. A tentative agreement has been reached between the teachers union and school district officials and will be voted on tomorrow.

By Washington Post Editors  |  02:52 PM ET, 05/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers | Tags:  central falls high school, deal in central falls, president obama and central falls, teachers and central falls

Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 05/14/2010

Don't rush to link teacher evaluation to student achievement

The president of Teachers College at Columbia University writes about the problems with President Obama's proposal to link teacher evaluation to student performance.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:30 AM ET, 05/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  National Standards, National Standards, National Standards | Tags:  No Child Left Behind, Teachers College, guest bloggers, linking teacher evaluation to student performance, value-added measures

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 05/12/2010

Teachers refuse to give standardized tests to kids

Maybe there is a lesson in this for American teachers. Saying that they are sick and tired of forcing kids to take standardized tests, thousands of teachers in England are refusing to administer high-stakes standardized tests in English and math this week.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 05/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests | Tags:  boycott in Britain, standardized tests, teachers, teachers boycott test, test boycott

Posted at 04:32 PM ET, 05/11/2010

A new source for education news, analysis

Here's a new source for the public to get news and analysis about education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:32 PM ET, 05/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Hechinger Report, Teachers College, education news

Posted at 01:15 PM ET, 05/11/2010

Horse, then cart, on teacher evaluation -- Hess

American Enterprise Institute's Frederick M. Hess writes about why Colorado's school reform bill is in one sense a giant step forward, but is overreaching in an "impatient rush to 'fix' teacher quality in one furious burst."

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:15 PM ET, 05/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Standardized Tests, Standardized Tests | Tags:  Colorado and teachers, Colorado school reform, Frederick Hess, Rick Hess, standardized tests, teacher assessment, teachers