Home » Edspresso (Page 30)

Morning Shots

The Summer Comes To An End

I can’t believe how much I have gained from this experience as an intern at The Center for Education Reform (CER). I originally came into the internship with the expectation of getting informed about the charter school movement, among other things, and I had no idea that this internship would go way beyond that expectation. Not only do I fully understand the discussion surrounding charter schools, but also I can speak of experiences hearing from CEO’s and founders of charter school networks,and I can recognize the names of charter school authorizers across the country. Beyond charter schools, I have learned about, tax-credits, school choice, STEM education, the “summer slide”, online learning, and teacher evaluation.

One of my favorite aspects about this internship was that I had the opportunity to read about the current issues surrounding education reform, and then hear from and speak with the leaders in the movement. After reading about the changes in education policy, I had the opportunity, along with my fellow interns, to actually meet with Katherine Haley, the policy advisor to the Speaker of the House. She spoke with us about her experiences on Capitol Hill, and the successes she has had over the years.

Interning at The Center for Education Reform got me talking to everyone about education. Throughout the summer I have found myself mentioning studies about education, or sharing links to articles that I read. After my internship, I have even been successful in signing-up my friends and family for CER’s weekly Newswire.

I am excited about how much I have learned over the past ten weeks and seeing where it will bring me in the future. I have enjoyed the support from each staff member and working alongside the other interns. I am very thankful to have had such

Read More …


Two Ravitches In One!!

Diane Ravitch has had it with celebrities openly discussing education policy because they don’t know anything about schools (read: express an alternate viewpoint).

Ugh, how awful must it be for public figures to talk about things in a free and open society. Kudos to Ravitch for bringing this horridness to our attention.

Ravitch has taken a similar position in the past with respect to celebrities nosing around issues related to our nation’s schools. For example, take when Ravitch called Matt Damon, “A Hero of American Education,” following Damon’s public appearances in support of status quo conditions.

In fact, so adamant was Ravitch about how celebrities shouldn’t comment on education that she vehemently defended Damon against the perceived hypocrisy of him exercising school choice with his own kids while advocating for a system that locks other kids into schools solely based on zip code.

At the end of the same August 12, 2013 blog post, Ravitch went so far as to say, “ is not only a hero on the big screen, he is a hero to millions of parents and teachers who need him.” Wow, sure told him off!

More recently, Ravitch took a similar anti-celebrity stance when discussing comedian Louis C.K.’s dabbling into the education debate, when C.K. publicly criticized the Common Core.

Wrote Ravitch, “Louis C.K. Takes Aim At Common Core – And We’re All Smarter For It.”

The absolute nerve of Louis C.K. talking about standards and testing prompted Ravitch to eagerly thank him for having such a positive impact on the national conversation surrounding Common Core:

“The standards and tests can be improved, but only if their advocates are willing to listen and think critically,” Ravtich wrote critically.

“Louis C.K. may have made that possible. Thanks, Louis.”

As anyone can plainly see, Diane Ravitch has consistently denounced any attempt by a

Read More …


Importance of Strong Charter Laws

In a new analysis intended as a conversation starter about the impact of charter school laws, the Democrats for Education Reform (DFER) found little ties between the strength of a charter law according to The Center for Education Reform’s own rankings and student learning.

To be fair, and as DFER points out in the conclusions section, charter student success is based on a number of variables, and it’s this type of positive customization and versatility that makes a charter school a charter school. This does not take away, however, from the importance of having a strong charter school law on the books.

Though the analysis isn’t meant to illustrate cause and effect, The Center for Education Reform still cautions against drawing any inferences when charter student performance is based on the very questionable results produced by the 2013 national CREDO study.

CER noted in 2013 that the national CREDO study is fraught with unreliable methodology that leads to equally unreliable conclusions.

The initial effects of having a strong charter law are twofold. Not only does a law with multiple, independent authorizers, no cap and equitable funding allow for more educational options to flourish, but in so doing creates an environment in which charter educators, leaders and parents are a welcomed part of public education.

This relationship is exemplified by the 335 additional charter campuses created during the 2012-13 school year in states rated ‘A’ or ‘B’, on the law rankings, contrasted with the 13 campuses in states rated ‘D’ or ‘F.’

The removal of oversight mechanisms — whether in the form of a politicized state commission or an ill-equipped local school district — that lack a vested interest in the success of charter schools go a long way in attracting excellent charter models.

As Kara Kerwin wrote in the charter

Read More …


Edspresso Lounge

Edspresso Archive

Education Blogs