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The Answer Sheet: September, 2011

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/30/2011

5 myths about Gov. Chris Christie’s ed reform in New Jersey

Here are five myths about what New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is doing with public education funding in his state that show the truth behind his his political rhetoric.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/30/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Equity

Posted at 02:00 AM ET, 09/30/2011

The latest in free-market educational solutions — updated with 2 responses

A recent report was published that slammed America’s education schools for rampant grade inflation and low standards. Here’s a critique of that report, a response from the report’s author, and a response to the response.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:00 AM ET, 09/30/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:45 AM ET, 09/29/2011

MCPS superintendent: Have we really learned lessons of No Child Left Behind?

Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Joshua Starr writes that he is concerned about what may take the place of No Child Left Behind.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:45 AM ET, 09/29/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  No Child Left Behind

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/29/2011

New ways students cheat on tests

Cheating on tests has been going on probably for as long as tests have been given to students, but there are some modern ways kids have devised to steal answers. Here are some of them.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/29/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/29/2011

A vision for public education

Here’s a vision for public education that thousands of people in Georgia have worked on for more than three years. It is proactive and positive.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/29/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:46 PM ET, 09/28/2011

SAT cheating scheme uncovered; 7 arrested

Seven current and former students at a prestigious high school in Long Island, N.Y. have been arrested and accused of involvement in a scheme in which one took the SAT college entrance exam for the others — in exchange for payments of up to $2,500.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:46 PM ET, 09/28/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:54 PM ET, 09/28/2011

The problem with Obama’s speech to students

There’s no reason why a president — any president — shouldn’t speak directly to students during the school day. It’s too bad that the vision of learning President Obama painted in today’s speech matched his education policies.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:54 PM ET, 09/28/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:10 AM ET, 09/28/2011

An ed reform book not really about education

The Steven Brill book, “Class Warfare,” has been the talk of education reform circles for weeks. Is it all it is cracked up to be?

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:10 AM ET, 09/28/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/28/2011

A film on education that gets it right

A teacher writes that every policymaker should be required to see the new film “American Teacher,” which powerfully reveals the huge challenge we face in our efforts to attract and keep the best teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/28/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 09/27/2011

A bet on No Child Left Behind

In 2008, Diane Ravitch and Richard Rothstein made a bet about the future of No Child Left Behind and public education in the United States. Rothstein explains who won.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 09/27/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  No Child Left Behind

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/27/2011

State revisits nation’s first teacher-student ‘Facebook law’

This summer, Missouri became the first state in the nation to put a law on the books barring public school teachers and students from having private contact on Facebook and other electronic media. Now lawmakers have changed their minds — sort of.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/27/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:48 PM ET, 09/26/2011

School gets ‘SAT Word of the Day’ wrong

Some mistakes are more amusing than others. This one counts in the former category: The PTSA at a well-regarded high school in Montgomery County sent out the SAT Word of the Day, with the wrong definition.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:48 PM ET, 09/26/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 01:00 PM ET, 09/26/2011

A strange deference to Gates at Education Nation

Teacher Anthony Cody watched NBC’s opening session so you didn’t have to, and he found newsman Brian Williams displaying an awkward deference to the Gates Foundation, which has spent billions on controversial education initiatives.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:00 PM ET, 09/26/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Anthony Cody

Posted at 10:11 AM ET, 09/26/2011

How to fix the mess we call middle school

Elementary schools and high schools are tough enough to run, but middle schools are a problem unto themselves. Nobody quite knows what to do with students who are of age to be in what we call middle school. Here’s a suggestion.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:11 AM ET, 09/26/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Middle School

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/26/2011

Obama’s NCLB waivers: Do flaws outweigh benefits?

The Obama administration’s No Child Left Behind “flexibility” plan offers our struggling public schools a leap from the frying pan to the fire.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/26/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:24 AM ET, 09/25/2011

The LEARN Act’s real effect on literacy

Will the LEARN Act, introduced in both houses of Congress with the aim of furthering literacy instruction, actually help kids learn how to read? Here’s a debate on the subject.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:24 AM ET, 09/25/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Reading

Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 09/24/2011

Parent involvement centers to close for lack of funding

For 16 years Parent Involvement Resource Centers have helped low-income families, school districts and state governments nurture high-quality parent involvement programs. But more than 60 are now set to close for lack of funding.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:30 AM ET, 09/24/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Parents

Posted at 11:58 AM ET, 09/23/2011

The bottom line on Fairfax Schools Supt. Jack Dale

There is disconnect among some parents with Jack Dale, the superintendent of Fairfax County Schools, who just announced he will leave when his contract expires in 2013. But there’s more to his story.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:58 AM ET, 09/23/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Fairfax County Public Schools

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/23/2011

Top 10 myths of college admissions

If you think you know everything there is to know about how to get into college, think again. Here are the leading myths about how kids get into college.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/23/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Admissions

Posted at 06:12 PM ET, 09/22/2011

Will Harvard students get hot breakfasts back?

Good news for folks at Harvard: A huge jump in the value of the endowment of the country’s wealthiest university means that students may get back the hot breakfasts that were taken away during the financial crisis.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:12 PM ET, 09/22/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 09/22/2011

The problem with Obama’s plan to issue NCLB waivers

President Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan would do well to listen to Daniel Domenech on the subject of issuing states waivers from key provisions of No Child Left Behind.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 09/22/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  No Child Left Behind

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/22/2011

Republican bills in Congress don’t solve NCLB’s main problems

Sen. Lamar Alexander and some Republican colleagues introduced legislation to change No Child Left Behind, but it would still would leave a test-centric accountability system in place.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/22/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 PM ET, 09/21/2011

Rupert Murdoch giving keynote at Jeb Bush’s ed reform summit

At the annual education reform summit hosted by former Florida governor Jeb Bush, one of the people giving a keynote address is, of all people, Rupert Murdoch.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 PM ET, 09/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:06 PM ET, 09/21/2011

Will the LEARN Act help kids learn to read?

Here is an argument in support of the LEARN Act, legislation in the House and Senate intended to drive literacy education as a successor to former president George W. Bush’s controversial Reading First program.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:06 PM ET, 09/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 09/20/2011

An odd way to honor teachers

Was Monday night’s Kennedy Center celebration to honor seven D.C. public schools teachers really the best way to honor the teaching profession?

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 09/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools

Posted at 03:00 AM ET, 09/20/2011

Where the Common Core State Standards fall short

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:00 AM ET, 09/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:10 PM ET, 09/19/2011

Yes, there are stupid questions

Whoever said there is no such thing as a stupid question obviously never looked very carefully at a standardized test. Alfie Kohn explains.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:10 PM ET, 09/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Alfie Kohn

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 09/19/2011

10 Tips for new teachers (expect to make ‘hideous’ mistakes, etc.)

A veteran teacher provides 10 tips for new teachers, bits of advice you probably won’t find on traditional lists.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 09/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Teachers

Posted at 02:40 PM ET, 09/18/2011

Deion Sanders, former Redskin, to open Texas charter school

The Texas State board of Education approved Sanders’ application to open the school even though some members expressed concerns about the school’s academic rigor.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:40 PM ET, 09/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Charter schools

Posted at 11:13 AM ET, 09/17/2011

School district uses Race to the Top money for public relations

One of the school districts that is a finalist for next week’s 2011 Broad Prize for Education is using money it won in the federal Race to the Top school reform competition to hire two public relations experts to help tamp down negative reaction to its new standardized testing regime.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:13 AM ET, 09/17/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/16/2011

Why Common Core Standards implementation is slow

The implementation of the new Common Core Standards in public school districts across the country is going slow this fall, according to a new survey. And for several reasons, that’s not much of a surprise.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/16/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/16/2011

Why education reform keeps failing

Evaluating individual teachers will never bring about systemic change in public education unless the United States develops a coherent educational infrastructure, an educator argues.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/16/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:35 PM ET, 09/15/2011

Getting teacher evaluation right

Here is an edited version of a briefing that renowned educator Linda Darling-Hammond and other education research experts gave on Capitol Hill about the right way to evaluate teachers.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:35 PM ET, 09/15/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/15/2011

D.C.’s new sex ed standardized test: Fodder for a Jon Stewart skit

I can imagine the skit Jon Stewart and his crew at The Daily Show will put together on this: D.C. schools officials are developing the nation’s first statewide standardized test on sex education and health.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/15/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  D.C. Schools

Posted at 03:00 AM ET, 09/15/2011

School board member: How I was bullied at school

A school board member remembers how he was bullied when he was in school and how it has affected his view of the issue as a member of a policy-making school panel.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:00 AM ET, 09/15/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Bullying

Posted at 05:13 PM ET, 09/14/2011

What the decline in SAT scores really means

Anybody paying attention to the course of modern school reform will not be very surprised by the news that scores in reading, writing and even math are down.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:13 PM ET, 09/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  SAT and ACT

Posted at 11:18 AM ET, 09/14/2011

Public education's biggest problem gets worse

The number of American children living in poverty just got worse — 22 percent — and that has big implications for school reform.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:18 AM ET, 09/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Poverty

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 09/14/2011

The cause of standardized test cheating and how to stop it

With yet a new standardized test cheating scandal, this one in Los Angeles at a top-ranked charter schools, the government’s favored solution — more policing -- doesn’t look like the best solution .

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 09/14/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:20 PM ET, 09/13/2011

The problem with the U.S. News college rankings

Every year U.S. News & World Report comes out with its myriad rankings of colleges, and every year officials at schools bend over backward to find ways to improve their scores. Here’s why that’s a problem.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:20 PM ET, 09/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:30 PM ET, 09/13/2011

Ravitch tells how Kopp, Duncan surprised her

Education historian Diane Ravitch write about how Wendy Kopp surprised in when the two were debating this summer, and the surprising thing Education Secretary Arne Duncan said when she met him at a party.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:30 PM ET, 09/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Diane Ravitch

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 09/13/2011

Do we really need another NCLB hearing?

Oh good. Congress is holding another hearing on Adequate Yearly Progress, and if there is one thing we need in Washington, it is yet another discussion onNCLB.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 09/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  No Child Left Behind

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/13/2011

A primer on navigating education claims

For stakeholders of all kinds in U.S. public education, debates about education and education reform can be taxing, confusing, and ultimately circular, resulting in little that we call productive. Here’s some help in understanding what’s going on.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 09/12/2011

What the iPad (and other technology) can’t replace in education

We have become focused so much on new technological devices and what they can do, we forget what they can’t, and that’s a problem when it comes to education.

By Valerie Strauss  |  07:00 AM ET, 09/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 12:01 AM ET, 09/12/2011

Study: Minorities underrepresented in STEM jobs

Hispanics and non-Hispanic blacks have over the past decade been underrepresented in U.S. jobs in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math, in large part because of a lack of equality in educational opportunity, according to a new report being released today.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:01 AM ET, 09/12/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:17 PM ET, 09/09/2011

Study: Most state history standards don’t mention 9/11 attacks

Most states do not specifically mention the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in their social studies standards, according to a new study, and only four name Osama bin Laden or al-Qaeda.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:17 PM ET, 09/09/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:00 AM ET, 09/09/2011

Improving schools with ‘The Project’

Veteran educator and curriculum expert Marion Brady offers an innovative way to improve schools and help kids learn the critical thinking skills they need to be successful adults.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:00 AM ET, 09/09/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:53 PM ET, 09/08/2011

Is Obama’s call to modernize schools really necessary?

President Obama has proposed spending billions of federal dollars to modernize public schools across the country. Does spending so much money make sense? Here’s why it does.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:53 PM ET, 09/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 09/08/2011

Are schools teaching the wrong lessons about 9-11?

What should teachers be discussing with their students to mark the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks? The answer may not be as simple as it seems.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 09/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/08/2011

A superintendent’s message: ‘Keep paddling’

A school superintendent tells his staff that increasing doubt in public institutions makes their job harder but they need to ‘keep paddling.’

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/08/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 09/07/2011

The Daring Librarian: Wikipedia is not wicked!

The Darling Librarian explains why K-12 teachers and college professors have to get over their disdain for Wikipedia and provides tips on how students can be taught to use it effectively.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 09/07/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:01 PM ET, 09/06/2011

Management whiz offers radical ideas for school reform

Management expert Steve Denning offers some radical ideas for real reform of the public education system.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:01 PM ET, 09/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 09/06/2011

Back to school quiz: Test your education knowledge

Was homework really once thought to be detrimental to kids’ health? Was summer vacation really designed to give children of farmers time to help in the fields?

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 09/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/06/2011

What we don’t know about our students — and why we don’t know it

Alfie Kohn writes about why so many kids are unengaged in school and how adults can make changes to change that.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  Alfie Kohn

Posted at 09:14 AM ET, 09/05/2011

Labor Day: Why we celebrate

Kids complaining about going back to school? Labor Day is as good a time as any to let them know just how much worse things could be for them. In fact, they once were: Kids were forced into back-breaking jobs day and night....

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:14 AM ET, 09/05/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 09/02/2011

Do ‘top’ college graduates really make better teachers?

There is a big push in education to draw top college graduates into the teaching profession under the assumption they would make better teachers. But the evidence isn’t really there to support that notion.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 09/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  The Answer Sheet, Matthew Di Carlo

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 09/02/2011

President Obama gives back-to-school interview to kids

The president is very busy, but not too busy to sit down at the White House with two members of Scholastic’s Kids Press Corps for a wide-ranging back-to-school interview.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 09/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:00 AM ET, 09/02/2011

5 Commandments for college freshmen

The transition to college requires a change in mindset; a change in attitude and behavior. To help make this transition as painless and productive as possible, here are five commandments for a successful college career.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:00 AM ET, 09/02/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  College Life

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 09/01/2011

The reformers’ obsession with ‘young’ teaching talent

Why, educator Anthony Cody asks, are

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:00 AM ET, 09/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 09/01/2011

Teacher: How to improve D.C.’s IMPACT evaluation system

A teacher in D.C. public schools for four years offers a way for to improve the IMPACT teacher evaluation system that will make it far more effective and fair.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 09/01/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

 

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