Virtual School Meanderings

July 24, 2016

Worth A Read

A regular Sunday feature…

Worth A Read

Donald Trump Jr.’s call for school choice in context

Posted: 20 Jul 2016 09:00 PM PDT

Emily Costello & Kalpana Jain react to recent comments from Donald Trump Jr. regarding school choice in the U.S.  The authors share excerpts from scholars about what the research says about school choice, including quotes from Kevin Welner and Josh Cowen.

Author’s Advice to White Teachers in Urban Schools: Drop the ‘Savior Complex’ and Learn from Students

Posted: 17 Jul 2016 09:00 PM PDT

Maya Elie interviews Chris Emdin about his new book: ‘For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood … and the Rest of Y’all Too.’ Here’s part of Emdin’s response: “I’m not demonizing white folks or speaking to just white folks, I’m speaking to the rest of y’all too! There are black folks who also enforce those same white supremacist ideologies. The tools are for everyone, the tools are for the fact that we have 80% of white people in urban schools, but it’s also for you black and brown educators who are conditioned to accept the pedagogies that white folks are implementing. It ain’t about being racist, it’s about being aware of race.”

Book Review – Mission High

Posted: 17 Jul 2016 09:00 PM PDT

Jesus Tirado, University of Georgia, reviews Kristina Rizga’s ‘Mission High: One School, How Experts Tried to Fail it, and the Students and Teachers who made it Triumph.’ Tirado says, “”Mission High’ (2015) provides great insight into how complex schooling is and how history and policy shape people’s experiences today. Readers will appreciate and empathize with the struggles, triumphs, and personal insights of the students, teachers, and administrators throughout the book and see why tests should not be the ultimate and only evaluation.”

A Myth Grows In The Garden State

Posted: 14 Jul 2016 09:00 PM PDT

Matt Di Carlo takes a closer look at New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s ‘fairness funding’ plan: “Pu[t] simply, Governor Christie believes that ‘money doesn’t matter’ in education. He and his advisors have been told that how much you spend on schools has little real impact on results. This is also a talking point that, in many respects, coincides with an ideological framework of skepticism toward government and government spending, which Christie shares.”

Book Review – Improving Teacher Evaluation Systems: Making the Most of Multiple Measures

Posted: 14 Jul 2016 09:00 PM PDT

Terek Azzam reviews ‘Improving Teacher Evaluation Systems: Making the Most of Multiple Measures,’ a new book by Jason A. Grissom and Peter Youngs. He says: “The inclusion of pragmatic considerations along with supporting research-based evidence is a core strength of the book because it ties theory, research, and practice together. Conceptually, the text covers four main domains that include: a) perspectives on value added models (Chapters Two to Five); b) the potential for alternative evaluation criteria (e.g., student surveys and classroom observations) (Chapters Six to Eight); c) the utility of evaluation systems for teachers and school leaders (Chapters Nine, Ten, and Twelve); and d) issues with the implementation of large-scale evaluation systems (Chapters Eleven and Thirteen).”

Continuing Change in Newark

Posted: 14 Jul 2016 09:00 PM PDT

Richard Lee Colvin looks into the tenure of Christopher Cerf as the state-appointed superintendent of Newark Public Schools. “From the start, Cerf understood that as superintendent he had to take a different approach from Anderson’s, and do all he could to smooth the political waters.”

New Book on Market-Based, Educational Reforms

Posted: 13 Jul 2016 09:00 PM PDT

Audrey Amrein-Beardsley shares the release of a new book on market based educational reforms. “As Larry Cuban put it, the book’s editors have a ‘cast of all-star scholars’ in this volume, and in Gloria Ladson-Billings words, the editors ‘assembled some of the nation’s best minds’ to examine the evidence on today’s market-based reforms as well as more promising, equitable ones.

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