When I first began this blog, education reform was ascendant. I considered reformers to be harmful, but can’t stand the politics of progressives, their primary opponents.
Education reform has, happily, taken a huge hit over the past couple years. On the other hand, Trump’s victory has largely ended the cooperation between the left and right side of education reformers. Conservative reformers are pretty devastated. They were all adamantly Never Trumpers, so his victory didn’t help their cause much. Meanwhile, progressives are becoming even more closeminded and restrictive. I don’t know where this all leads.
Thirteen years of teaching has also taught me how utterly disconnected teaching is from the nonsense bruited about in the education policy discussions. I remain an interested observer. I think a lot of my older stuff is still relevant and interesting, but it describes a world that doesn’t really exist anymore.
But old or new, here are some broad areas.
Five Education Policy Proposals for the 2016 Presidential Elections (contains the links to the five pieces and a wrapup). Or you can read them individually:
- Ban College Level Remediation
- Stop Kneecapping High Schools
- Repeal IDEA
- Restrict K-12 Ed to Citizens Only
- End English Language Learner Mandates
Review of Byran Caplan’s The Case Against Education: How Did We Get Here?, Pre-Employment Testing, Toe Fungus Prevention, How Well Are Americans Educated?, Average Was Always Over
Review of Robert Pondiscio’s How the Other Half Learns: Teacher Origin Stories, Who are the Students?, The Secret Sauce, The Case of Tyrone and Adama, The Path to Principal, Cannon Fodder
History of the Bush/Obama Education Reforms
- The Road to Glory
- Core Meltdown Came
- Alex or Gloria?Common Core Assessments
- Why Didn’t They See Common Core Fail Coming?
- Core Damage?
- Victory over Value Add
- It All Came Tumbling Down
Accountability and Standards
GPA and the Ironies of Integration
The Fallacy at the Heart of All Reform
The Many Failings of Value Added Modeling
The problem with fraudulent grades
Homework and grades.
On Graduation Rates and “Standards”
Why higher standards are impossible
Dance With the Ones Who Brung Him
What the Public Means by Public Education
Unstructured Musings on Choice
White Elephant Students and Charters
Charters: The Center Won’t Hold
The Parental “Diversity” Dilemma
Charter Schools and Suspensions
Diversity Dilemma in Action
Why Charters Skim, and Why They Should Stop
KIPP Mathematica Study and Bragging Rights
Boston Charter School Study: What “Improved Scores” Look Like
The Takeaway from the TFA Study
School Reform Ideas
An Alternative College Admissions System
Not Why This. Just Why Not That.
What Polices Will Help At-Risk Adolescents?
Vocational Ed: Advancing the Debate
Just a Job
ELL Isn’t Language Instruction
Reading in the Gulag of Common Core
Finding the Bad Old Days
General Education Reform
End of Education Reform?
Doug Lemov’s Creation Myth
TFA Diversity and the Credibility Gap
Wokesters, Grift, and Bureaucratic Sludge
Boaler’s Bias (or BS)
Keeping Teachers New
Parents and Schools
The Teacher Wars: A Review
Discovery Doesn’t Work
Jo Boaler’s Railside Study: The Schools, Identified. (Kind of.)
Reform Math: An Isolationist’s View
Dan Meyer and the Gatekeepers
Social Justice and Winning the Word
Content Knowledge and Reading Comprehension: Bold Talk and Backpedaling
Core Meltdown Coming
Understanding Math, and the Zombie Problem
Skills vs. Knowledge
Math Instruction Philosophies, Instructivist vs. Constructivist
Unions, as separate from progressives, I am surprisingly tolerant of. I wrote all these before I had tenure.
Why Chris Christie picks on teachers
On the CTU Strike
A Few Words on Janus
Since everyone who writes has been educated, everyone who writes think they know how to make school better. A “common wisdom” has arisen amongst most elites.
Plague of the Middlebrow Pundits, Revisited: Walter Russell Mead
The People Who Share Their Reading Origin Stories
SAT Changes and Cheating
The SAT is Corrupt. No One Wants to Know.
SAT is Corrupt: Reuters Version
College Confidential and Braindumping the SAT
Evaluating the new PSAT: Math
Evaluating the new PSAT: Reading and Writing
SAT’s Competitive Advantage
Braindumping the PSAT
On to teaching. I am a teacher, did ya know?
Part III: Teaching
Part IV: Miscellany, Movies, and Me
If you missed it: Part I: Things Voldemortean