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All-Star Education Reform Lineup Speaks at Harvard
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 23, 2010, 12:06 pm   

Last week some of the best-known names in education reform converged for a round-table discussion at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. The moderator, former Secretary of Education under President George W. Bush, Margaret Spellings told the crowd, "It's like we have Mick Jagger, Bruce Springsteen, and Tina Turner together on the same stage," referring to the panel. Former Washington, D.C., chancellor of schools Michelle Rhee, former Florida governor Jeb Bush, and former Clinton White House chief of staff John Podesta called for teacher accountability and school reform in their discussion entitled, "Strange Bedfellows: The Politics of Education and the Future of Reform".
Stranger Than Fiction: Cheaters and Incompletes?
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 19, 2010, 02:36 pm   

What would school be like without "F"s or consequences for cheating? Students at West Potomac High School in Alexandria, VA are finding out, as their school has determined there is no need for the failing grades in their grading system.

Does Teacher Education Need Reform?
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 18, 2010, 12:25 pm   

Recently experts have focused their attention on not only the need to reform the classroom, but the need for reform in educating our future teachers. Many colleges of education have done little to keep up with emerging technologies and teaching techniques. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan once said, "Our university-based teacher preparation programs need revolutionary change, not evolutionary tinkering." To that end, an emphasis on intense in-classroom training has been the focus of change for a new pilot program being introduced in eight states.

Yesterday, a report issued by an expert panel at the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education was released as means to recommend strategies in improving teacher education. Among the many recommendations, they advise creating formal mentorship programs for student teachers akin to those at medical schools. The focus would be less on in-classroom lessons and more on training in the field, much like a medical residency.

Christie's the Boss
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 16, 2010, 11:43 am   

This week New Jersey is again making national headlines over Governor Christie's run-ins with the education establishment in the state. On Monday, Christie publically criticized a raise in salary approved for a local superintendent. Christie called Parsippany-Troy Hills Superintendent LeRoy Seitz "the new poster boy for all that is wrong with the public school system that's being dictated by greed."

Teacher Pay & Continuing Education
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 15, 2010, 12:30 pm   

The debate over teacher pay continues as education reformers and policy makers share ideas about performance pay and value-added compensation scales. One aspect that has remained largely constant is pay increases for teachers who earn additional course credits or hold advanced degrees. Sometimes known as "lane" increases or the "master's degree bump", these increases are some of the costliest to schools systems and are raising questions on whether or not these degrees are in fact helping student learning.
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