Eye on Education

Want to be rated ‘highly effective’ in New York? Don’t teach English or math in grades 4-8

English and math teachers in grades 4-8 in New York are much less effective in promoting student growth on state assessments (or comparable measures) than other teachers in the Empire…

The soft bigotry of no expectations

One of the most memorable phrases crafted by former President George W. Bush’s speechwriters was “the soft bigotry of low expectations.” The phrase first gained prominence in a 1999 campaign…

Resistance to the Common Core isn’t just about suburban soccer moms and their private interests

Somewhere, David Labaree is smiling. Actually, I have a pretty good idea where this is: Palo Alto, Calif., where Labaree teaches the history and sociology of education at the…

When policymakers don’t understand basic statistics

Imagine, if you will, that the Stuarts have two children, Kylie and Frederick. Kylie was born in 1997 and Frederick was born in 2001, both in Toledo, Ohio. The Stuarts…

Ratings madness: Are there really no highly effective elementary or middle-school teachers in Syracuse?

What the heck happened in Syracuse? Ten days ago, Superintendent Sharon Contreras briefed the city’s Board of Education on the results of the first year of implementation of the…

It’s ‘Opposite Day’ among ed policymakers in Albany

Black is white. Day is night. Common Core-aligned tests are just like other standardized tests. Wait, what? Haven’t we been told that Common Core-aligned tests are a completely different species?…

‘Sharp focus’ on teacher-prep programs falls flat

Last week, the New York City Department of Education issued its first ever Teacher Preparation Program Reports. The Department was judicious in not describing the reports as an evaluation…

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The envelope, please…

They weren’t hermetically sealed. Photo: Malcolm Lidbury Ten weeks ago, I made some predictions about New York City’s 2013 proficiency rates on the New York State…

Why the NCTQ ratings won’t have much influence, now or later

How time flies. It’s been scarcely a month since the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) released its inaugural ratings of teacher-preparation programs across the country. Already, NCTQ is gearing…

The trouble with NCTQ’s ratings of teacher-prep programs

Yesterday, the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) released its first national ratings of teacher-preparation programs. Passing judgment on 1,200 undergraduate and graduate programs across the country—but not other routes…

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