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The Civic Negligence of Schools: Reckoning With Race and History

I have been thinking lately about the civic responsibility – and negligence – of schools.  Specifically, I have been thinking about the disservice schools (and the people who make decisions about curriculum in schools) have done to young people when it comes to our collective failure to confront the darker and more sinister corners of our history, that persistent undercurrent of racism and institutional oppression that has recently sprung to the surface in Ferguson, Missouri.  

What Professionals See When They Look at Teaching

Last week, the New Yorker published a story looking back at the cheating scandal that plagued the Atlanta Public Schools and first came to light in a 2009 investigation by the Atlanta Journal Constitution.  In the story, reporter Rachel Aviv spoke to John Ewing, former executive director of the American Mathematical Society.  Ewing, she writes, “is perplexed by educators’ ‘infatuation …

Where Will All The Effective Teachers Come From?

An increasingly popular strategy for improving teaching and learning is to identify ineffective teachers and then dismiss them.  However, I believe this strategy is short-sighted and incomplete.  Investing precious time and resources in the removal of negative outliers in the teaching corps does little to improve teaching and learning at scale.  Only deep investments in the conditions that support teaching and learning – …

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