Tag: Julia Steiny


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Read: Monday Morning Quarterback Edition


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What the dropout nation is reading this Monday morning:after the NFL playoffs: John Fensterwald notes Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s effort to revamp the state’s teacher seniority rules, which force districts to…

Photo courtesy of Jose Vilson

What the dropout nation is reading this Monday morning:after the NFL playoffs:

  1. John Fensterwald notes Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s effort to revamp the state’s teacher seniority rules, which force districts to lay off their younger teachers first without regard to their performance. Fensterwald notes that if Schwarzenegger succeeds, districts will have to step up to the plate and conduct strong rigorous evaluations of teacher performance. Fensterwald also reports that some school districts are getting cold feet about Race to the Top participation.
  2. In the Daily News, Tom Carroll takes to task Randi Weingarten’s replacement as head of New York City’s AFT local. Sample quote: “Mulgrew’s point is not actually the advancement of any specific proposal, but rather to throw out there as much mischief as possible to gum up charter schools”.
  3. In Dropout Nation comments for Friday’s Read. Southern Education Foundation’s Steve Suitts, who co-wrote the recently-released A New Diverse Majority report, responds to Monise Seward’s criticisms of the study (and of education think tankers in general). He makes some important points about the study and its overall focus. I’m reading the report now for an upcoming Spectator report.
  4. Virginia’s Democratic House leader argues that support for charter schools shouldn’t be a “partisan” issue.
  5. School administrator Deron Durflinger offers a voucher-like kind of school reform: Give vouchers to parents, who can then directly select the teachers they want to teach their children. Intriguing idea. It could actually lead to greater parental engagement, improve student achievement and make teachers true professionals the way lawyers usually are.
  6. Alan Bonsteel of California Parents for Educational Choice offers historical perspective on school choice and the Golden State’s recent school reform efforts.
  7. Julia Steiny focuses on a union-sponsored charter school. A school not sponsored by either the NEA or AFT.
  8. Kevin Carey observes the financial havoc within California’s university system and takes shots at the University of California’s leaders and wealthy students for their “faux solidarity” with poor collegians.

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Read: Monday Morning Memo Edition


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What’s happening in the dropout nation: How many teachers — and schools — use the Internet to engage with parents? Jay Mathews notices that many teachers stubbornly won’t do so….

Cartoon by Gary Varvel

Cartoon by Gary Varvel

What’s happening in the dropout nation:

  1. How many teachers — and schools — use the Internet to engage with parents? Jay Mathews notices that many teachers stubbornly won’t do so. Unfortunately, as with much with the use of technology and data in education, this isn’t so shocking. It would be great to have a technology argument in education similar to what’s going on in the media business.
  2. Julia Steiny on the overuse of harsh school discipline: “Schools banish kids often and self-righteously.. It’s barbaric.”
  3. Big Ed Reform Andy #1 provides a round-up of Race to the Top news out of the Wolverine State. As I had mentioned in October, for many states, it is as much a pursuit of the dollars as it is about achieving substantial education reform. This isn’t a bad thing if the correct results are achieved.
  4. Tom Vander Ark wants the nation’s dropout factories to be fixed or replaced. Who can disagree? This should also apply to the schools that serve as feeders into them.
  5. Mark Kleiman thinks the No Child Left Behind Act’s focus on testing all students at just one point in a school year is rather inefficient; according to him, management guru W. Edwards Deming would be “appalled” by it. Maybe. But it doesn’t have to be an either-or. All students need to be tested in order to assure that each child gets the highest-quality education possible based on his needs. At the same time, sampling would also make sense to do in order to see the long-term results of broad-based reforms. How about that.
  6. School reform isn’t about popularity. Judging by the protests over the closing of Jamaica High and a few other New York City schools, Joel Klein and company know this all too well.
  7. Meanwhile in New Jersey, Gov.-elect Chris Christie is looking to expand a limited public school choice program, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. If successful, New Jersey would be following up on California’s recent expansion of a similar program.
  8. Want to learn more about how many California students aren’t making it from high school into college. Check out Measuring Success, Making Progress, which is funded by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation (hat tip to The Educated Guess).

Subscribe to Dropout Nation’s Twitter feed to get up-to-the-minute updates.

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