School Reform, Passion and Mic Drops

The definition of “Drop the Mic” from the classic Eminem Hip Hop film 8 mile is…

Calling someone out so hard that you just walk away indisputably victorious.

A few days ago I had the opportunity to visit Annapolis, MD for the Maryland State Education Association (MSEA) policy conference. MSEA’s second annual policy conference featured a discussion of the policies, issues, and challenges that face public education, policymakers, stakeholders, and educators. The panels focused on testing, reform strategies to close gaps, education issues, and projecting future trends in public education.

Our panel was entitled “Forecasting the Next 10 Years of Public Education.” The moderator was Liz Bowie from the Baltimore Sun. The other two panelists were Jennifer King Rice (University of Maryland) and Richard Kahlenberg (Century Foundation).

Maybe I was a little more passionate than usual.

My opening thoughts:

Thoughts about opting out of testing

Should I trust a charter more than a used car salesman?

Thoughts on integration and school finance

Two different teacher quality visions for the next ten years

The entire forum:

I think it is important for communities to draw the clear distinctions between the top-down, private control reforms of the last ten years and the potential for community-based, democratic reform for the next ten years.

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My first visit to Annapolis.

A post shared by Julian Vasquez Heilig (@professorjvh) on

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