Tag Archives: policy

Developing Better Teacher Evaluation Systems

With many states passing merit-pay laws, it is imperative that we find a good method to evaluate educators effectively. A new report from The Brookings Institution, a think tank based in Washington, D.C., says a way to accurately judge student … Continue reading

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Group Opposes Common Curriculum

The debate over a common, national curriculum with corresponding assessments continues.  A group led by critics of the new common academic standards recently issued a manifesto arguing against development of common academic standards.  The document, Closing the Door on Innovation: … Continue reading

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Getting Past the Excuses in Public Schools

I fear that an excuse culture permeates many of our schools.  Those of us in education find it easy to excuse low performance because of certain contextual factors, especially the low socio-economic status of students.  Schools and teachers really can’t be … Continue reading

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How Specific Should the National Curriculum Be?

After being away from the blogoshpere for a few weeks, I weigh in on what I believe to be a critical issue in the world of education: the call for a national curriculum derived from common standards. Determining how national … Continue reading

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What is Good Professional Development?

A recent twitter conversation with Justin Tarte evoked some thought regarding teacher professional development. His open-ended question went something like this, “how would teachers answer if you asked them how they stayed knowledgeable of innovations and policies in education?” My answer … Continue reading

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Some Teacher Education Programs are Successful

Teacher education programs have come under fire lately. Even the Secretary of Education and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) have called for teacher education programs to be “turned upside down in this country.” The vast majority of new teachers … Continue reading

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Is Rote Memorization Getting a Bad Rap?

As an asst. superintendent of curriculum and instruction, I struggled with the balance between encouraging teachers to engage students with higher-order learning activities and the need to ensure that students simply must know certain facts that are learned by rote … Continue reading

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