Latest News and Comment from Education

Wednesday, December 26, 2018



DEC 14

What If Policymakers Stopped Condemning Poor People and Considered their Real Needs and Circumstances?

Merry Christmas and Good Wishes for the Season! This blog will take a holiday break. Look for a new post early in the new year. In 2012, Mike Rose published Back to School: Why Everyone Deserves a Second Chance at Education , a book about the potential of community colleges to help people discover their interests, widen their experiences, and perhaps change the direction of their lives. He begins

DEC 13

New Federal Case Launched in Rhode Island to Establish Educational Equity as a Federally Protected Right

If you think about it, you’ll remember that for more than forty years, school equity cases have been filed under the education clauses of the 50 state constitutions. That’s because, in a 1973 decision, San Antonio v. Rodriguez , the Warren Burger, U.S. Supreme Court decided that, because education is not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, education is not protected as a fundamental right under t

DEC 12

Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools Tells New Congress: Fully Fund Title I and IDEA

In his new book, Educational Inequality and School Finance, the Rutgers University school finance expert Bruce Baker carefully refutes some long-running and persistent myths about the funding of public education—Eric Hanushek’s claim that money doesn’t really make any difference when it comes to raising student achievement, for example, and the contention that public schools’ expenditures have sk

DEC 11

New from the National Education Policy Center: “How School Privatization Opens the Door for Discrimination”

Last week this blog explored some of the ways the expansion of school choice ends up creating injustice and inequality . The National Education Policy Center just published a new report, How School Privatization Opens the Door for Discrimination , in which Julie Mead of the University of Wisconsin and Suzanne Eckes of Indiana University further investigate one particular aspect of the same topic:

DEC 07

More Education News from Chicago: WBEZ Publishes the Troubling History of Chicago’s Public School Closures

It is quite a week for education news from Chicago. Yesterday this blog covered the first teachers’ strike at a charter school network, UNO-Acero Charter Schools in Chicago. Today’s post considers nearly two decades of closures of traditional neighborhood schools in Chicago. Chicago’s closure of so-called “failing” schools began in 2002. Two years later, Chicago’s technocratic model of test-based

DEC 06

Chicago Teachers at 15-School Acero Charter Chain Strike: First Walkout at a Unionized Charter School Network

In the first walkout at a U.S. charter school network, 500 teachers at Chicago’s Acero (formerly UNO) charter school chain went on strike Tuesday. Acero Charter Schools’ teachers are represented by the Chicago Teachers Union. While teachers in a number of Chicago charter schools had formed their own ChiACTS union, at the end of last January, ChiACTS merged with the 28,000 member Chicago Teachers

DEC 05

Why School Choice Ends Up Creating Injustice and Inequality

In his new book, Educational Inequality and School Finance: Why Money Matters for America’s Students , school funding expert, Bruce Baker critiques the rapid expansion of charter schools for siphoning off dollars from state and local public school budgets. Baker also addresses the philosophical contention frequently offered to justify the rapid expansion of school choice—that justice can be defin

DEC 04

Dogged Advocates for Justice Protest Ohio State School Takeovers of Youngstown, Lorain, and East Cleveland

After January, John Kasich will no longer be governor of Ohio. House Bill 70, the law that paved the way for the Youngstown—and now Lorain and East Cleveland—school takeovers is the biggest stain on his legacy. In gerrymandered Ohio, with huge legislative Republican majorities after the November 2018 election—62 Republicans and 37 Democrats in the Ohio House and 24 Republicans and 9 Democrats in

NOV 30

DeVos Again Protects For-Profit Colleges and Federal Loan Servicing Contractor at Expense of Vulnerable Students

Betsy DeVos once announced: “Government really sucks.” She doesn’t like government regulation, and she prefers to free up the marketplace. One of the best places to observe her penchant for deregulation is in higher education, where she has regularly done everything she can to protect the investors in for-profit colleges and trade schools, where she has tried to step back from protecting students

NOV 29

Faith in High Stakes Testing Fades, Even Among the Corporate School Reformers

After a recent twenty-fifth anniversary conference at the Center on Reinventing Public Education at the University of Washington, Bothell—a Gates funded education-reformer think tank, Chalkbeat ‘s Matt Barnum summarized presentations by a number of speakers who demonstrate growing skepticism about the high-stakes, standardized testing regime that has dominated American public education for over a

NOV 21

Truly Public Schools Must Form Engaged Citizens and Then Engage Those Citizens in Shaping School Policy

This blog will take a week long Thanksgiving break. Look for a new post on November 29. Good wishes for Thanksgiving! In its October 2018 issue, Phi Delta Kappan magazine features a pair of articles that, from two entirely different perspectives, trace declining civic engagement around public education to the philosophy at the heart of the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act. In Preparation for Capable

NOV 20

DeVos Proposes Controversial Rewrite of Rules for Investigating Campus Sexual Assault

Last Friday, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos released—for a 60-day public comment period—new rules for how schools that receive federal dollars must handle allegations of sexual assault. The Washington Post ‘s Laura Meckler explains : “The rules stem from a 1972 law known as Title IX that bars sex discrimination at schools that receive federal funding. Most of the attention is on higher education

NOV 16

Northwestern University Economist Uses Data to Prove Students’ Test Scores Fail to Measure Quality Teaching

Mike Rose, a UCLA education professor, understands a lot about teaching. In his extensive writing about education, Rose explains good teaching with precision and insight. Rose culminated a four year visit to excellent classrooms across the United States with the publication of the story of those teachers in Possible Lives . He has also written widely about what good teachers do and what ought to

NOV 15

Bruce Baker’s New Book on School Finance Develops a Scathing Critique of Charter School Expansion

Rutgers University school finance professor, Bruce Baker’s new book, Educational Inequality and School Finance: Why Money Matters for America’s Students , covers the basics—how school finance formulas are supposed to work to ensure that funding for schools is adequate, equitable, and stable. Baker also carefully refutes some persistent myths—Eric Hanushek’s claim that money doesn’t really make a

NOV 14

Is America’s Romance with Charter Schools Fading Despite Gobs of Political Money from Its Promoters?

Last week’s election produced a couple of significant indicators that the public may be growing weary of charter schools. At the same time the public seems increasingly aware that adequately funded public schools may be a better way