Thursday, November 17, 2011
“We live in an age when education is such a driver of economic growth, and economic growth is a driver of national security,” New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman told me this week when I asked if he still stood by his statement that if he were starting over, he’d be an education reporter. Friedman, who co-wrote That Used to Be Us with Michael Mandelbaum, was in Washington, D.C., to join National Center for Education and the Economy President Marc Tucker for a discussion of what ails the nation’s schools, as well as a book signing (Tucker edited the recently published Surpassing Shanghai: An Agenda for American Education Built on the World’s Leading Systems). Both men described a system flailing in a state of crisis and potentially exacerbating its circumstances even as it attempts to enact solutions.
“The U.S. is now in the grips of a reform agenda that has virtually nothing in common with the countries with the most successful education systems,” Tucker said. He and Friedman offered some keen—and counterintuitive—insights on what it might take to keep American schools competitive in a “hyperconnected” world, as Friedman described our society. You can read more about their discussion of school reform, teacher quality and global competitiveness at EdMedia Commons.
Monday, November 14, 2011
Talking About Teacher Evaluation
Our one-day conference, “Evaluating Teachers: Beyond the Rhetoric,” on Saturday in Chicago reverberated with persistent themes from our speakers. First, teacher evaluations should not be punitive but should help educators improve their practice. Secondly, teachers want better evaluation systems that help them do just that. Here are some links to coverage of the intense, one-day event:
- Tough Questions on Changing Teacher Evaluations, Rebecca Vevea, Chicago News Cooperative, Nov. 12, 2011
- 10 Things to Think About as Michigan and Other States Overhaul Teacher Evaluation, Julie Mack, Kalamazoo Gazette, Nov. 13, 2011
- Evaluation System Required to Apply for No Child Waiver, Marquita Brown, Clarion-Ledger, Nov. 13, 2011
- Teacher Evaluations: Publicly Tying Names to Scores Hinders Education Reform, Report Says, Huffington Post, Nov. 14, 2011
- Are Ed Colleges Cartels Standing in the Way of Education Reform? Dave Murray, Grand Rapids Press, Nov. 14, 2011
- Teachers Unions Say Teacher Evaluations Should be About Improving, Not 'Sorting and Firing,' Dave Murray, Grand Rapids Press, Nov. 14
- Teacher Evaluation Pilot Shows Promise, Sarah Karp, Catalyst Chicago, Nov. 15, 2011
- Can We Evaluate Teachers Before Knowing Exactly What Makes Them Great?, Dave Murray, Grand Rapids Press, Nov. 16, 2011
- Williamson County Snubs Student Teaching Because Teachers Fear Effect on Evaluations, Julie Hubbard, The Tennessean, Nov. 16, 2011
- Michigan Schools Part of a Nationwide Movement to Overhaul Teacher Evaluations, Julie Mack, Kalamazoo Gazette, Nov. 20, 2011
- Georgia to Roll Out Teacher Evaluations in Schools, Dorie Turner, Associated Press, Nov. 27, 2011
- Measuring a Teacher's Worth, Nichole Dobo, The News-Journal (Wilmington, Del.), Jan. 15, 2012
We’ll add additional links as stories are posted.