The Answer Sheet: Guest Bloggers


Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 11/22/2010

Hannah Arendt and the point of education

An award-winning veteran teacher reflects on the reasons we bother to educate children, and concludes that we have forgotten or never knew, because if we did, we wouldn't do it the way we do now. "I find I am becoming increasingly radicalized as I age," he writes.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 11/22/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers | Tags:  education, guest bloggers, hannah arendt, kenneth bernstein, standardized tests

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 11/20/2010

The Matthew Effect, Plinko, and the achievement gap

The argument for integration of low-income students into more affluent schools is that it offers an opportunity to level the playing field and provide high expectations to students who are not traditionally held to the same schooling standards as the white upper and middle class. However, as a Black male who attended Montgomery County Public Schools for high school, I am not convinced that a culture of high expectations extends beyond honors, AP, and IB classrooms.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:00 AM ET, 11/20/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Achievement gap, Achievement gap | Tags:  achievement gap, brain development, brain research, closing achievement gap, guest bloggers, plinko, the Matthew Effect, the matthew effect

Posted at 11:29 AM ET, 11/17/2010

Beyond the brain: Reading is a cultural activity

An educator writes: "Reading is a cultural activity. This statement may seem obvious, and yet in recent decades an increasing number of educators have considered reading from psychological and even neurological perspectives, as if reading were a process that happens in the agent’s mind and is ultimately regulated by brain mechanisms."

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:29 AM ET, 11/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  guest bloggers, reading, reading strategies, teaching reading

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 11/10/2010

Why the Education Dept. should be eliminated -- Wood

School principal George Wood, acknowledging that "it is peculiar for someone who values education to be arguing for what has often been a very conservative position," explains why he thinks the Education Department should be eliminated.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 11/10/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  George Wood, George Wood | Tags:  ed department, education department, eliminate the education department, george wood, guest bloggers

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

Schools in a banana republic

Educator Anthony Cody takes a hard look at how today's economy is affecting public school students.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 11/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody, Anthony Cody | Tags:  achievement gap, anthony cody, guest bloggers, poverty, school reform

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 11/04/2010

College admissions’ dirty little secrets

A college admissions advisor warns parents not to let their kids find the school first and then figure out how to pay for it because "students whose parents can 'write the check' stand a markedly better chance of getting admitted, all other factors being equal.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 11/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Admissions, College Admissions, College Admissions | Tags:  admissions process, college admissions, college applications, college tuition, financial aid, guest bloggers, sticker price

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 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 12:56 PM ET, 09/21/2010

RIF study: Access to print materials helps student achievement

A comprehensive new study shows that children's book lending and ownership programs were shown to have positive behavioral, educational, and psychological outcomes.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:56 PM ET, 09/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  guest bloggers, reading, research

Posted at 12:34 PM ET, 09/19/2010

Ravitch: Why civil rights groups oppose the Obama agenda

Education historian Diane Ravitch looks at the Obama administration's insistence on embracing competition in federal education funding and more.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:34 PM ET, 09/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  arne duncan, bridging differences, civil rights groups, civil rights report, diane ravitch, equity in education, guest bloggers, no child left behind, race to the top

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 09/08/2010

Ravitch: Welcome back to school "reform"

Diane Ravitch predicts that the 2010-11 school year will be another year in which "teachers and principals will be blamed and punished" unless their students' test scores go "up and up," more principals will be fired and more schools will be closed. And more.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 09/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch, Diane Ravitch | Tags:  diane ravitch, education secretary duncan, guest bloggers, no child left behind, obama and blueprint, obama and school reform, race to the top, race to the top winners, rttt winners, the death and life of the great american school system, top ooool reboamael

Posted at 07:08 AM ET, 07/31/2010

Do we need another hero?

Does education reform really need more heroes?

By Valerie Strauss  |  07:08 AM ET, 07/31/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  ed week, guest bloggers, jay mathews, lean on me, michelle rhee, school reform, sousa middle school

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/09/2010

The problem with linking phys ed to academics

Sure, physical education has been linked to academic achievement. But why should it be? Isn't being physically fit a goal unto itself?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  benefits of physical education, guest bloggers, health, pe and academics, physical education, physical education and academics, physical education and test scores, sean slade, teaching to the whole child, the whole child

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 06/03/2010

Movies and School Reform: Lessons from ‘An Inconvenient Truth’

By Frederick M. Hess. I can’t recall how many times over the years I’ve heard from school reformers, "We need our own ‘An Inconvenient Truth.’ " You know, a cinematic indictment of the educational status quo jarring enough to stir a lethargic public. Well, all of a sudden, we’ve got a whole bunch of them, and we’re about to see how much they matter.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 06/03/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers | Tags:  documentaries on education, education movies, education reform, frederick hess, guest bloggers, movies and school reform, the cartel and movie, the lottery and movie, waiting for superman

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 11:43 AM ET, 05/13/2010

When test scores no longer matter

Jim Horn, a college instructor, writes about why, suddenly, some school reformers have decided that standardized test scores no longer matter, when they once were the holy grail.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:43 AM ET, 05/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  charles murray, charter schools, guest bloggers, jim horn, studies on charter schools

Posted at 08:45 AM ET, 05/12/2010

Goodlad: How to help our schools -- Part 3

Influential educator John Goodlad completes a three-part series on how to fix our schools.

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:45 AM ET, 05/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  John Goodlad, John Goodlad, John Goodlad | Tags:  Guest Bloggers, John Goodlad, NCLB, National Standards, No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top | Tags: John Goodlad, goodlad and a place called school, goodlad on school reform, guest bloggers, john goodlad and school reform, no child left behind and goodlad, race to the top, school reform

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 05/10/2010

Why student attitudes toward school change -- Willingham

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham talks about the differences he sees between first-graders and sixth-graders, and the reasons kids change in their attitude toward school.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 05/10/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, about first graders, about sixth grade, guest bloggers, learning

Posted at 09:45 AM ET, 05/04/2010

Deborah Meier's education advice to Obama

Renowned educator Deborah Meier has some unsolicited advice for President Obama about how to shape education policy and meet the needs of students, teachers, parents and the public.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:45 AM ET, 05/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Deborah Meier, Deborah Meier, Deborah Meier | Tags:  Deborah Meier, No Child Left Behind, Obama and blueprint, President Obama and blueprint, guest bloggers, performance assessment, school reform and Obama

Posted at 10:59 AM ET, 05/03/2010

Willingham: About poverty and school success

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham looks at the relationship between poverty and school success--and doesn't like what he sees in the United States.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:59 AM ET, 05/03/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, equity, guest bloggers, poverty and academic achievement, poverty and schools, the achievement gap

Posted at 09:15 AM ET, 04/30/2010

Are ed reformers ignoring American values?

By Marion Brady. Perhaps most curious of all is the present education reform effort’s disregard for deep-seated American values. With the possible exception of Australia, no other country matches America in professed admiration for the non-standard person....Why, then, is there near-universal enthusiasm for national standards?

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:15 AM ET, 04/30/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  Common Core Standards, Marion Brady, No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, american values, guest bloggers, national standards, national standards and american values, schools and american values

Posted at 06:00 PM ET, 04/27/2010

Goodlad on school reform: Are we ignoring lessons of last 50 years?

By John Goodlad.... But, as 2009 merged into 2010, the expectations for a new dawning in schooling were slipping away. The good news was that the No Child Left Behind Act soon would be history. But the proposals for “reform” were déjà vu all over again—been there, done that. I suddenly awakened to the realization that we were tinkering, one more time, toward an ill-defined utopia. I was dumbfounded.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 PM ET, 04/27/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  John Goodlad, John Goodlad, John Goodlad, John Goodlad, John Goodlad | Tags:  John Goodlad, NCLB, goodlad and a place called school, goodlad on school reform, guest bloggers, john goodlad and school reform, no child left behind and goodlad, race to the top, school reform

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 04/26/2010

Willingham: Stanford charter school and 'confirmation bias'

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham looks at how "confirmation bias" affected the way people looked at the news that a charter school founded by Stanford University Professor Linda Darling-Hammond was closed.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 04/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Charter schools, Charter schools, Charter schools | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, Linda Darling-Hammong, Stanford charter school, charter schools, guest bloggers

Posted at 10:49 AM ET, 04/19/2010

An analysis of pay-for-grades schemes -- Willingham

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham from the University of Virginia writes about the results of experiments in school districts to pay students for their work, and explains the psychological reasons it sometimes works--and sometimes doesn't.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:49 AM ET, 04/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, Harvard project and paying for grades, grades, guest bloggers, paying for grades

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 04/12/2010

Willingham: Obama should stop coercing teachers and start persuading

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham writes about how President Obama seems to trying to coerce teachers to do what he wants rather than use his formidable powers of persuasion. Experients in psychology, he says, show that coercion gets compliance, while persuasion breeds enthusiasm and innovation.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 04/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, Obama and teachers, Obama education policy, President Obama and teachers, guest bloggers

Posted at 05:07 PM ET, 04/09/2010

Sorry Geoffrey Canada, but failure IS an option, a reality, and even a boon

By Diana Senechal. Calling for more school choice, Geoffrey Canada, president and CEO of the Harlem Children’s Zone, began a recent newspaper op-ed with the following: "Visitors to my public charter school often ask how the students feel about the signs on the walls that say: ’Failure is not an option.’ They are surprised to hear that the signs are really for the staff." There are two ethical problems with declaring that failure is not an option.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:07 PM ET, 04/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers | Tags:  Diana Senechal, Harlem Children's Zone, Harlem zone, education reform, guest bloggers, hcz, reform in Harlem

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 04/06/2010

How to decide on a college

Bruce Vinik, a college admissions consultant, explains how best to figure out which college or university to attend--not, it turns out, like his high school friend Jim made his decision.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 04/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Admissions, College Admissions, College Admissions | Tags:  Bruce Vinik, G Duke, attending Duke, choosing a school, college admissions, guest bloggers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 04/06/2010

E.D. Hirsch Jr.: Common Core Standards could revolutionize reading instruction

By E.D. Hirsch, Jr. The Common Core Standards represent a fundamental and long overdue rethinking of the dominant process-approach to U.S. literacy instruction. To appreciate what a radical transformation it represents, one needs to understand how children are now schooled in literacy.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 04/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  Common Core Standards, E.D. Hirsch, guest bloggers, reading

Posted at 12:10 PM ET, 04/05/2010

Willingham: What NAEP reading scores really show

By Daniel Willingham. The belief that kids will be better readers if we simply get them to read more is rooted in the belief that reading comprehension is a transferable skill that, once mastered, applies to any text. That’s true of decoding, but not of comprehension. What’s needed is a substantial knowledge base.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:10 PM ET, 04/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, NAEP, guest bloggers, reading

Posted at 12:15 PM ET, 03/30/2010

Researchers take new look at teenage brain

It has become commonplace these days to hear that teens are victims of their own immature brains and raging hormones. But University of Virginia researchers Joseph P. Allen and Claudia Worrell Allen say that while the prefrontal cortex isn’t fully developed in teens, it’s far from missing, and we still have little evidence that this affects teens’ real-life behavior.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:15 PM ET, 03/30/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Research, Research | Tags:  brain research, guest bloggers, teenage brain

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 03/29/2010

Willingham: Feds should leave ed policy to states

By Daniel Willingham. The federal government should get out of the business of making education policy and instead put more effort into evaluating student performance. Here's why.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 03/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, NCLB, guest bloggers, student assessment

Posted at 09:09 AM ET, 03/15/2010

Willingham on school choice

By Daniel Willingham. The cognitive scientist looks at Diane Ravitch's conclusion on school choice in her new book, "The Death and Life of the American School System" as well as other views on how the experiment has worked across the country.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:09 AM ET, 03/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, charter schools, guest bloggers

Posted at 03:55 PM ET, 03/12/2010

Whitmire: New data on how far boys are falling behind

Richard Whitmire looks at a new report to be released next week that shows that males are not doing as well on state tests as females--more evidence that the Obama administration's approach to school reform must include targeted efforts at males.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:55 PM ET, 03/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers | Tags:  Richard Whitmire, Why Boys Fail, guest bloggers

Posted at 09:33 AM ET, 03/12/2010

Why Obama should invest in teachers

How a professional learning community works--and why the most important investment the Obama administration can make in education is in teachers and teaching.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:33 AM ET, 03/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  George Wood, Obama, guest bloggers, teachers, teaching

Posted at 12:51 PM ET, 03/11/2010

How students trick themselves about what they know--Part 2

In the second part of his article on why students think they know material that they don't, cognitive scientist and University of Virginia professor Daniel Willingham discusses the situations that can get kids in trouble in this regard.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:51 PM ET, 03/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham, Daniel Willingham | Tags:  Daniel Willingham, guest bloggers, learning, the brain

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 01/12/2010

All-Day or Half-Day Kindergarten?

By Debra Viadero. In my Fairfax County neighborhood, there are two elementary schools within half a mile of each other. The school that my children attended has an all-day kindergarten; the other one offers kindergarten half a day. The school with the half-day program, however, has other benefits, though, such as smaller class sizes in the early grade. So, I’ve often wondered, which students were better off in the long run: the full-day program graduates or the half-day students who got more individual attention from their teachers?

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 01/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Guest Bloggers, Guest Bloggers | Tags:  kindergarten; guest bloggers

Posted at 02:00 PM ET, 11/10/2009

Hall of Shame: Willingham uses science to blast 'eyeQ'

By Daniel Willingham eyeQ is a computer program currently being tested in Salt Lake City Schools which the makers describe as “an effective tool for Brain Enhancement, Reading Improvement, and Vision Therapy or Eye Training.” Indeed, near-sighted users are promised that they will likely see an improvement in their vision. Improvements in reading speed of 100% in less than one month are described as typical.....But the claims made are fantastic (doubling your reading speed in one month) and anyone with any experience in human neuroscience would tell you that the science is confused.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:00 PM ET, 11/10/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Daniel Willingham, Guest Bloggers, Hall of Shame, eyeQ