The Answer Sheet: nclb and

Posted at 05:30 PM ET, 02/03/2014

NCLB crashed and burned. When will we ever learn?

Federal policy makers haven’t learned any real lessons from NCLB’s failures.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:30 PM ET, 02/03/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/19/2011

The case against NCLB reauthorization

Here's an argument by someone other than Margaret Spellings against reauthorization of No Child Left Behind.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/13/2011

Are more high-stakes tests inevitable? A teacher says 'no'

A teacher writes that education reformers have promised far more than they can deliver, and that more testing is not inevitable as many teachers, students and parents fear.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/13/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 01/06/2011

A principal on standardized vs. teacher-written tests

Educator George Wood urges Congress not to rely on standardized tests to measure achievement. If you don't think that "data-driven decision-making" is really test-driven decision making, consider this: Ohio’s school report cards consist of 26 “data” points, and 24 of them—92%--are test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 01/06/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:00 PM ET, 01/03/2011

A response to Arne Duncan

Here's a response to a piece Education Secretary Arne Duncan wrote in The Washington Post today.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:00 PM ET, 01/03/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 12/11/2010

'If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging'

Education Secretary Arne Duncan said the new PISA results are a "wake up call" for him. But is the call he is hearing the right one?

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:00 AM ET, 12/11/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:27 PM ET, 12/07/2010

Hysteria over PISA misses the point

Reaction in the United States to the PISA results -- in which American 15 year olds scored essentially average in reading, math and science -- was swift, sharp, and perhaps hysterical. But it missed the big point: No Child Left Behind didn't do anything to improve things.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:27 PM ET, 12/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

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)

Posted at 01:57 PM ET, 11/04/2010

Margaret Spellings: The last NCLB defender?

It's hard to find strong defenders of No Child Left Behind these days, except, perhaps, for Margaret Spellings.

By Valerie Strauss  |  01:57 PM ET, 11/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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

Where Kline stands on education policy

The man expected to be the new chairman of the House's education committee has some strong opinions about policy: He immensely dislikes No Child Left Behindy, but wants the Disabilities Education Act fully funded.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 11/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 11/03/2010

Education policy: What will happen now

If you think things have been unexpectedly bad in the world of education under President Obama, the Republican takeover of the House could just make things even worse.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:00 AM ET, 11/03/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 02:55 PM ET, 10/28/2010

How to evaluate students: Look at their work

The best way to find out what students know and can do is to look at their actual work, not by the results of a standardized test. Monty Neill looks at how a local assessment system can work.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:55 PM ET, 10/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:25 AM ET, 10/08/2010

Using 'School Quality Reviews' to improve schools

Here is the first of three articles that will describe an assessment and evaluation system for schools that its authors, Monty Neill and Gary Ratner, argue should replace No Child Left Behind's test-centric structure.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:25 AM ET, 10/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 10/01/2010

Why won't Congress admit NCLB failed?

Monty Neill asks and answers: Why is Congress so unwilling to recognize both research and public opinion and overhaul the most basic fact of No Child Left Behind: Its high-stakes standardized testing regime has failed?

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:00 AM ET, 10/01/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 06:30 AM ET, 07/19/2010

A letter to Secretary Arne Duncan

A businesswoman and education activist writes a letter to Education Secretary Arne Duncan about the difference between his words and his policies.

By Valerie Strauss  |  06:30 AM ET, 07/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:24 AM ET, 07/12/2010

Questions for Michelle Obama's live Web chat on obesity

First Lady Michelle Obama is hosting her first live web chat on Tuesday about her national campaign to end the country's obesity epidemic. Here are a few questions for her.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:24 AM ET, 07/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

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)

Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 05/27/2010

Postcards to Mrs. Obama: End high-stakes testing

Organizations opposed to high-stakes standardized tests are starting a postcard-writing campaign aimed at persuading First Lady Michelle Obama to "encourage" President Obama to end the use of high stakes tests. Lisa Guisbond of FairTest writes about the effort.

By Valerie Strauss  |  12:00 PM ET, 05/27/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 05/21/2010

How to combine learning, assessment, accountability

By Lisa Guisbond and Monty Neill.... It’s a great irony of the current accountability movement that policies like No Child Left Behind starve our children of time to think, create and learn in order to measure them with simplistic tests.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:30 AM ET, 05/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

Posted at 11:37 AM ET, 05/19/2010

Rand Paul’s views on education and reform

The political man of the moment is Rand Paul, an ophthalmologist and political novice who won the Republican Senate primary in a sign of the attraction of the tea party’s anti-government message. So let’s take a look at his views on education and reform.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:37 AM ET, 05/19/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

Posted at 02:46 PM ET, 05/06/2010

How Obama should set literacy goals

A literacy expert writes that the Obama administration's proposal for the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, A Blueprint for Reform, is on the right track in its literacy goals in its Blueprint for Reform. However, the goals as currently stated are very general and could lead to literacy approaches that might not be effective.

By Valerie Strauss  |  02:46 PM ET, 05/06/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 04/29/2010

What does being “college and career ready” mean?

It is one of President Obama’s key education reform goals: Ensuring that all students who graduate high school are “college and career ready” by 2020 is one of President Obama's key education reform goals. But what does that mean?

By Valerie Strauss  |  08:00 AM ET, 04/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 09:00 AM ET, 04/28/2010

How to measure student growth

By Lisa Guisbond. Growth models are pitched as a thoroughly modern, scientific way to .answer the age-old parental question: “What did you learn in school this year, my dear?” It seems reasonable enough: Test students at the beginning and the end of the year and measure the “growth” in test scores to see if student achievement is improving. Given the narrow and limited nature of the data used to measure this growth, however, there’s often less than meets the eye in the results. Fortunately, there are better, if little known or understood, ways of both measuring and stimulating real growth in learning.

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:00 AM ET, 04/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

Posted at 09:42 AM ET, 04/09/2010

Florida ed reform passes: Is it a model or disaster?

The Florida House early today passed a bill that ends job security for teachers and links teacher pay to student test scores, and the legislation is now in the hands of Gov. Charlie Crist (R). Will he agree with supporters that it is a model for the nation, or with opponents, who say it is extreme, badly crafted and harmful to public education?

By Valerie Strauss  |  09:42 AM ET, 04/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:54 PM ET, 04/02/2010

Florida school reform: Worse than you thought

Look at the way the Republican-dominated Florida Legislature handles important issues and it becomes easier to understand the lack of serious thought that has gone into its dangerous school reform plans.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:54 PM ET, 04/02/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 03:00 PM ET, 03/31/2010

Teachers fighting back in Florida

Even if you don’t live in Florida, you should pay attention to what is going on there. State lawmakers seem intent on passing legislation that opponents see as the sharpest attack on teachers in the country, and teachers and their supporters are fighting back. This could all spread beyond the borders of the Sunshine State.

By Valerie Strauss  |  03:00 PM ET, 03/31/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:25 PM ET, 03/29/2010

Arne Duncan the heartbreaker and Race to the Top

So Education Secretary Arne Duncan announced the first two winners of Race to the Top education reform money. Frankly, the process sounds a little too much like "Project Runway" to my taste.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:25 PM ET, 03/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

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)

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/28/2010

Less Testing, More Learning

By Lisa Guisbond and Monty Neill. President Obama's blueprint for rewriting No Child Left Behind shows a deeply disappointing failure to learn from NCLB's big mistakes. For instance, it still makes standardized testing the centerpiece of the law.

By Valerie Strauss  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 10:39 AM ET, 03/26/2010

Duncan silent on Florida’s education mess

Despite a growing chorus of opposition from teachers, students and even school superintendents, the Republican-dominated Florida Legislature is intent on passing a bill that would make eliminate teacher tenure, link teacher pay to student standardized test scores, and add a heap more tests on already test-plagued students. Education Secretary Arne Duncan doesn't have a word to say about it.

By Valerie Strauss  |  10:39 AM ET, 03/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 05:04 PM ET, 03/24/2010

Florida Senate approves disastrous teachers bill

On Wednesday, the Florida Senate passed a bill that would end job security for teachers in the state and require school districts to evaluate and pay them primarily on the basis of student test scores.

By Valerie Strauss  |  05:04 PM ET, 03/24/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:19 PM ET, 03/18/2010

School restructuring and AYP

It’s a good thing that President Obama wants to eliminate the requirement in No Child Left Behind that required schools to prove that students were making “adequate yearly progress.” A new report shows one-third of the nation’s public schools failed to meet AYP targets in the 2008-09 school year. But Obama's faith in restructuring of schools that don't meet AYP is misplaced. An article by Alexander Russo explains some unexpected consequences of restructuring.

By Valerie Strauss  |  11:19 PM ET, 03/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 04:22 PM ET, 01/18/2010

More to education than data

Here's Diane Ravitch's response to a post I did last week about Teach for America. In that post, I had noted that “Teach For America” founder Wendy Kopp went to Capitol Hill to talk new research on effective teachers. Using test score data, the nonprofit organization--which recruits college graduates to teach in low-income schools for two years--has determined that effective teachers are those that employ the same strategies as successful leaders in any field. Read what Ravitch thinks of the findings.

By Valerie Strauss  |  04:22 PM ET, 01/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)