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By John Kuhn. The following is a speech delivered on March 5, 2017, to the Association of Texas Professional Educators Legislative Action Weekend.  I have three older sisters who are all teachers. When I became a teacher too in 1997, the first advice they gave me was, “You need go join ATPE.” And …

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By John Thompson. There are so many reasons why anyone interested in public education should read Marta Jewson’s latest expose of the high profile New Orleans SciTech Academy’s shenanigans when providing – and not providing – special education services. Readers should follow Jewson’s links and read …

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By John Thompson. In the aftermath of the Trump election, and as our “post fact” politics becomes even worse, it will be interesting to see what school reformers do. Will they double down on their truth-challenged spin on charter schools, or will they become more circumspect in using evidence? The latest …

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By John Thompson. The latest report by the Education Research Association on New Orleans school reform, “Extreme Measures: When & How School Closures & Charter Takeovers Benefit Students,“ is consistent with the solid scholarship that informs its previous research. And it includes the important …

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By John Thompson. Author’s Note: This post was drafted before the election, but held until after the anticipated defeats of Donald Trump and Massachusetts’s State Question 2. The assumption was that the timing would be right for a balanced discussion of the actual record of choice-driven reforms. Now, both …

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By John Thompson. Learning from the Federal Market-based Reforms: Lessons for the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), edited by William Mathis and Tina Trujillo, details the numerous “opportunity costs” that resulted from a generation of test-driven, competition-driven reform.  The money and energy devoted to …

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By John Thompson. As test-driven, competition-driven school reform gets closer to scrap heap of history (at least in terms of improving schools), we will see more great journalists, such as Dana Goldstein, Dale Russakoff, Nikole Hannah-Jones, and Paul Tough document its failures. We can expect more analyses where …

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By John Thompson. The contemporary school reform movement was rooted in the Michael Deaver, Lee Atwater, Karl Rove, and Dick Morris era of public relations spin.  Being able to hire the best possible public relations expertise, reformers borrowed from Deaver’s success in using photos of Ronald Reagan getting …

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By John Thompson. The education sector is plagued by “astroturf” think tanks that issue “reports” that repeatedly conclude that (surprise!) reform is working. To do so, pro-reform scholars cherry-pick data in order to provide attractive, multi-colored graphics that show an upward trajectory, or at least …

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By John Thompson. Paul Tough’s Helping Children Succeed is a great corrective to the hubris that undermined the contemporary school reform movement.  Tough volunteers a modest statement about his methodology, and in doing so he offers an alternative to corporate reform and its grand vision of “disruptive …