Sarah Butrymowicz
Sarah Butrymowicz is a staff writer. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times, as well as on Time.com and NBCNews.com. She was the winner of the 2012 New York Press Club’s Nellie Bly Cub Reporter Award. She received a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University and an M.S. from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. As an undergraduate, she worked as a news editor and managing editor for the Tufts Daily, and she interned at both the Green Bay Press-Gazette in Wisconsin and USA Today.

As online courses expand, so do questions about ownership

It took a year for Christopher Nelson to create a course for a new online degree program in philosophy at South Texas College, where he had to squeeze in the job while teaching classes in logic, ethics, and social and political philosophy to students just getting started in the field. A Kierkegaard scholar and published […]

Skip school and lose welfare? The good and bad of Australia’s tough tactics on truancy

What if the punishment for skipping school was a loss in welfare benefits for your family? It’s a strategy that some politicians are considering in the U.S. – plans have been floated in Missouri and put into action in Michigan last year. But in Australia, they’ve already tried it, and the experience is a cautionary […]

Can the U.S. learn from Australia’s high bar for new teachers?

A major ongoing fight in the U.S. is how to make the teaching profession less a clock-in, clock-out job and more like the high-paid, high-demand career of a lawyer or doctor. Unions and teachers argue better pay will elevate the profession. Politicians and advocates want to put more scrutiny on teachers and end tenure, arguing […]

Lessons from abroad: If Republicans controlled U.S. education policy? Australia offers a sneak peek

What would happen if conservative ideas for improving education were given free reign in the United States? If Republicans take over the Senate and then the White House, a possibility, Americans might find out in the near future. Australia, similar in many ways to the U.S., provides a glimpse of what a transfer of power […]

Which winning ideas could the U.S. steal from Singapore?

Singapore has one of the best education systems in the world, according to international assessments. President Barack Obama and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan talk about its performance. United Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten visited in 2012 and her counterpart at the National Education Association, Dennis Van Roekel, has praised its teacher training. And […]

Lessons from Abroad: Singapore’s secrets to training world-class teachers

Singapore has been a hot topic in education circles ever since it began to appear near the top of the pack of international assessments in math and science in the mid-90s. The country has been held up as an example of a place where education is being done right: Singapore’s standards were higher and better […]

With reservations, Massachusetts schools begin to adopt Common Core

Part two of a two-part series on the Common Core standards, focusing on a low-performing school in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood. (Read the first piece in the series.) This story was co-produced with WGBH. BOSTON  – The metal detector at Dorchester’s Jeremiah Burke High School beeped softly as students passed through it on a cold November morning. […]

For special education students, diplomas, jobs increasingly elusive

HATTIESBURG, Miss. — Four weeks into a medical assistant program at Antonelli College, Nikki Mclendon eagerly took her parents to the college’s student appreciation day. The 20-year-old looked forward to discussing her progress and pre-registering for the next term, but instead received devastating news. School officials told the Mclendons their daughter was ineligible to continue. […]

De Blasio’s challenge: Paying for middle schoolers to stay late … and getting them to show up

When she heard last fall that she would have to stay in school until nearly 5 p.m., sixth grader Jenaba Sow tried to get out of it by telling her mom she had “after school-itis.” Although the new after-school program at P.S. 109 in Flatbush, Brooklyn, was presented as mandatory, Jenaba managed to skip the […]

Some California charter schools are opening for the wrong reasons, experts say

SAN CARLOS, Calif. – In cities across the country, charter schools have become known for anxiety-fueled lotteries, bitter disputes over sharing buildings with traditional schools, and teaching methods that are sometimes unorthodox. But in California, as well as some other states, charter schools have increasingly become associated with something more basic yet elusive: money. In […]

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