Putting students in charge to close the achievement gapNEWS

Putting students in charge to close the achievement gap

Educators, researchers, and policymakers at the state and national level are keeping close tabs on Pittsfield, which has become an incubator for a critical experiment in school reform.

NEWS

Opportunity gap narrows in Mississippi

Photo: Jackie Mader
By Jackie Mader

The latest national survey that looks at the ability of young people to better their lives through economic opportunity and education comes with some good news for Mississippi: More students are graduating from high school and more people are going to college. But even with these positive measures of upward mobility, the state lags behind […]

OPINION

What would Thomas Jefferson say? The mind and heart of the new liberal arts

Ralph Kuncl
By Ralph Kuncl

In a statement that may sound similar to today’s media rhetoric, 93 years ago Thomas Edison publicly shared the opinion that a college degree is useless. Albert Einstein brilliantly retorted, “It is not so very important for a person to learn facts. For that he does not really need a college. He can learn them […]

NEWS

Classroom technology can make learning more dangerous, and that’s a good thing

By Greg Toppo

Steve Jobs once called the personal computer “a bicycle for our minds,” a tool that helps us go farther with the same amount of energy. But for many teachers, it has been a bumpy ride. Educators have long held new technology at arm’s length, and probably for good reason: For more than a century, they […]

NEWS

Don’t believe everything you hear about the New Orleans charter revolution

Students study at Akili Academy, one of dozens of charter schools in New Orleans.  (Photo: Sarah Garland)
By Marta Jewson

As public school students settle into the school year, they can’t seem to shake off a bit of inaccurate national attention: The belief that New Orleans has the country’s first all-charter school system.

PARTNERS

Arbitrator rules Newark teacher must be rehired, given back pay

Newark School Superintendent Cami Anderson, second form left, welcomes students to the first day of classes at Peshine Avenue School in Newark, N.J., Thursday, Sept. 4, 2014. (AP Photo/Geoff Mulvihill)
By John Mooney

Amid all the debate surrounding her tenure as state-appointed leader of New Jersey’s largest school district, Newark schools Superintendent Cami Anderson has taken special pride being able to retain and reward exemplary teachers while removing the poor ones.

COLUMNISTS

Louisiana, do your homework: Student absenteeism, not Ebola, is the real epidemic

By Andre Perry

As a preventative measure to protect against the spread of Ebola, the Louisiana State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education made new emergency changes to the state’s governing handbook. However, there is no emergency — just an Ebola scare, which the board simply contributed to by making changes to sound policy. There is currently no […]

BLOGS

Twenty five percent of low-income urban high schools beat the odds

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By Jill Barshay

It won’t surprise anyone to learn that wealthier high schools send more students to college than low-income high schools. But a October 2014 report from the research arm of the National Student Clearinghouse, which tracks college students, reveals that a quarter of low-income urban high schools are doing better than a quarter of their high-income […]

NEWS

More AP courses slated for major overhaul

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By Emmanuel Felton

Despite the recent fallout over new guidelines for Advanced Placement U.S. History, the College Board is making similar changes to most science and history AP courses in an effort to emphasize critical thinking. The College Board is in the process of retooling many of its 36 courses to more align with what it sees as […]

OPINION

As top charters start to look like school districts, here’s why we should embrace their growth

Richard Whitmire
By Richard Whitmire

More than twenty years ago when charter schools first got launched in Minnesota no one envisioned that one day we would see charter management networks growing to resemble medium-size school districts. But it has happened. Last week, New York City-based Success Academy Charter Schools got green lighted to open 14 more schools over the next […]

NEWS

Mississippi kindergartners start the year behind, new test finds

By Kayleigh Skinner

JACKSON, Miss. – Two-thirds of Mississippi’s youngest learners are starting the year unprepared, according to results from a new test examining the reading skills of kindergarten students. Kindergartners took the STAR Early Literacy exam during the first month of the current school year to gauge their reading abilities. Over 40,000 students from 144 school districts […]

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