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Film Review: Defies Measurement weaves together problematic purposes of ed reform

In Defies Measurement, Shannon Puckett expertly weaves together the problematic purposes of testing, Common Core, corporate reform, No Child Left Behind, Teach For America, The Gates Foundation, The Broad Foundation, charter schools, and privatization. The film begins with Chipman middle school and traces the inspiration and impact that the school had on a diverse groups […]

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Do you have five minutes to understand whether @TeachForAmerica is effective?

Do you have five minutes to understand whether Teach For America (TFA) is effective? Mathematica does and they did in their latest study of TFA. More on this lead later in the review. The taxpayers of the USA paid Mathematica about $12 million for a couple of studies of TFA. We reviewed the prior 2013 […]

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The Test: Bad News (civil rights facade) and Good News (local accountability)

So do you want the good news or the bad news first? It’s a question my parents often asked me a child growing up. Which do you want to hear first? I’ll start with the bad news. High states testing has been around for a long time (See the post After Thousand of Years, #China Changing […]

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Podcast Series: Conversation with Loyola Students about Education Reform

Last week I joined students from Dr. Aurora Chang’s education reform class at Loyola University to discuss hot issues in the national conversation about education policy. We started with a few questions submitted by her doctoral students. Here is what we addressed: 1.When addressing inequity with policy makers, are there different strategies whether they are neoliberal or conservative? […]

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Louisiana’s Class of 2014 ACT Scores Are In This Post

Originally posted on deutsch29:
Today I made a new friend. This new friend works in admissions at one of Louisiana’s institutes of higher education. My new friend informed me that the Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) is not the only entity to which ACT sends score reports. It turns out that ACT sells the same…

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Students MUST be heard!!: Policymakers and educators should listen

I spent an evening a few weeks ago with Californians for Justice (CFJ) at a fundraising dinner for the organization. (shout out to Dr. Roxana Marachi for inviting me!) Who are they? Californians for Justice is a statewide grassroots organization working for racial justice by building the power of youth, communities of color, immigrants, low-income families, and […]

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Local Accountability is HAPPENING: New, Peer-Reviewed, and LIVE in D.C.!

What’s happening now!? Join us LIVE in DC this weekend to discuss community-based reform as an alternative to the top-down, Texas-style reform that we have utilized across the country for the past decade! I have noticed that some blogs have post titles that don’t make much sense at first glance— so I am going with […]

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Civil Rights Organizations to @BarackObama: NCLB has “Narrow Measures” and Discouraged “Rich Curriculum”

Can you read Arne Duncan’s lips?… Yesterday a letter was released by Civil Rights organizations calling for President Barack Obama and Secretary Duncan to improve public education accountability systems to address educational equity. Wait a minute… I thought high-stakes testing and accountability was about Civil Rights (at least that is what President Bush and Secretary Paige […]

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EdWeek Series Beyond Rhetoric: If Not a Bunch of Tests… Then What Instead?

I am currently writing for the EdWeek column K-12 Schools Beyond the Rhetoric with Jack Schneider. We are covering a bevy of important topics in education policy such as Teach For America, Charters, Vouchers, High-stakes testing, and Standards. I first excerpted some of our conversation about charters schools in the post Is the Impact of Charters Schools on Achievement a Big Lie? Today, […]

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Testing and Accountability: The More Things Change, The More They Stay the Same

What if you could talk to yourself 20 years in the future? In our most recent peer-reviewed study to be published in Urban Review, we wanted to know how students of similar characteristics were experiencing NCLB-style policies in the same urban school in two different decades. Our first sample of students attended the urban high school […]

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A Message to Democrats (and Republicans too) about Education Reform

Because I am California bound, I had to cancel an engagement to speak with the Sun City Democrats about education reform. To make up for it, I taped a message to them and answered their questions. I pasted the YouTube response below. Here are the questions: We read, in the Austin Statesman, that one of the […]

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Devil is in the Details: Teacher Tells Us What’s Up With Local Accountability

The current form of Texas-style No Child Left Behind high-stakes testing and accountability has run its course. It is very clear that after 20 years in Texas and 10 years across the nation, the sanctions and rewards (the rewards disappeared a long time ago) system never produced an education miracle in Texas (as posited by […]

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A-F Accountability Letter Grades: Reform or Different Name, More of the Same?

Education “reformers” are still pushing A-F accountability letter grades. In this approach, districts and schools are given letter grades like a student might receive. Are A-F letter grades a “reform”? I was inspired to write this post because Jimmie Don Aycock, current Texas House Education Committee Chair mentioned in the TFA Policy Forum held at […]

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The “War Report” Radio Show: False Promise of NCLB for Public Education

Leave No Child Behind is a moniker appropriated from the military’s “Leave No Man Behind.” Perhaps the moniker belies the mindset of the authors of high-stakes testing and accountability policies, because we are in the middle of a “war” for public education with the privateers— those seeking to profit from our education system. (See Billionaires co-opt […]

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D.C. are you listening?: A New Local, Community-Based Approach for Accountability

It turns out that a new local, community-based approach to accountability is happening… I first introduced the idea of Community-Based Accountability on October 12, 2012 in the post Accountability: Are you ready for a new idea? Here is some background from the post I am giddy!!: Community-Based Accountability I had writer’s block all summer. I owed Professor Rich Milner […]

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Thoughts From a Former KIPP Teacher: Testing, Common Core, and Charters Are Myths

In the bid for a better education for all students in America, recent reform efforts have focused on increasing the expectations – standards and exams – for students.  What is not explicitly discussed are the negative ways that these standards and exams target students of low socio-economic status and minorities – we are enamored as […]

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Happy Birthday!: A Conversation About Education With César E. Chávez

Happy Birthday César Chávez! Often education “reformers” toss around civil rights as a justification for their “reforms.” See for example Reframing the Refrain: Choice as a Civil Rights Issue. If he were still alive today, how would César Chávez have weighed in on the school “reform” movement? I pose several questions about hot topics in education reform— then I […]

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Have you heard?: Jeff Santos & Dr. Julian Vasquez Heilig on Revolution Radio Network

Take a listen to our live radio conversation from Tuesday 2/11/14 about vouchers, charters, testing and accountability. For part 1 of the conversation click here and for part 2 click here. The conversation goes for about 15 minutes. Thanks to the NEA for tweeting about the conversation. A few tweets: .@ProfessorJVH "In Chile, guess who losers […]

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