I am proud to say that my intern friends—Adiya Taylor, Mandy Leiter, Matt Beienburg, Tigran Avakyan—and I hosted a very successful event: “CER Interns Present: The Next Generation in Education Reform.” I would like to extend a thank-you to the Thomas B. Fordham Institute for letting us use their space as well as to the staff at CER for their encouragement and support throughout this entire process—which, I’m sad to say, is now over.
Our speakers were also instrumental in transforming our event from a small idea that started in a conference room to a reality that ended up in about 40 attendees, eagerly asking questions and inclined to network.
Kara Kerwin, Daniel Lautzenheiser, Jack McCarthy, Michael Musante, and Amber Northern are experts in their fields regarding education policy and certainly had a lot to bring to the table. Our moderator, Tigran Avakyan, engaged them in discussions regarding teacher tenure, technology use in the classroom, and the return on investment. Charter schools were also a prominent topic that came up.
I’ve been thinking a lot about charter schools, actually. I first heard the term “charter school” in a class at college, and I never thought about it later after that semester. I am close to completing my first internship here at CER and only now can I truly tell you what it means. Charter schools are innovative, public schools that are free from regulations set forth by the government. They serve some of the most disadvantaged students and are kept accountable for their results. New charter schools are always opening up as well. For instance, 11 charter schools are expected to open up in the DC area alone this coming fall. Many charter schools—new or having already existed for a while—may also face closure in the future due to a lack of