In response to New America’s recent policy paper, Common Core Goes to College: Building Better Connections Between High School and Higher Education, Jacqueline King, director of higher education collaboration for the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, reflects on the engagement between higher education and K-12 to develop a “greater academic alignment.” “I see more reasons for […]Read More →
By Paige Kowalski, Director, State Policy and Advocacy, Data Quality Campaign
In the current education space, there are suddenly numerous groups and spokespeople to “get the parent voice” out there in the debate. We have parent groups that want to see Common Core State Standards replaced, or student privacy better protected, or better teacher quality policies enacted. Parent voices are critical to listen to because they are voicing real concerns about their children education. But, as a parent myself, I wonder if it is truly possible for a single group’s voice to represent a body of such diverse individuals. After all, the only real thing that parents have in common is the single decision to become a parent in the first place. It is possible that the only parent voice that might be heard is simply the loudest and not the most representative of views. How can we better understand what parents really want? How can we make sure that we are using our communications opportunities to provide real, accurate, and clear information to parents about current education policies and practices?Read More →
Get involved in the dialogue for mathematics learning of all students! Diane J. Briars, president of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, urges us all – especially parents and teachers – to “distinguish the Common Core State Standards Math facts from the fallacies” in her message, Core Truths.Read More →
By The Hunt Team
“This is an excerpt from the overview of a five-part re:VISION special series on improving the effectiveness of the nation’s teachers and leaders. The Hunt Institute’s re:VISION focuses on critical issues in education policy – highlighting key research for policymakers and prompting discussion of solutions within states and across the nation. The ‘teacher effectiveness series’ is intended to provide state-level policymakers with a digest of existing research and current state efforts around teacher preparation, evaluation, compensation, and school leadership. Each of the briefs in this series will provide a deeper exploration of the challenges states are facing in the area of educator effectiveness reform and offer considerations for policymakers.”
A talented, well-trained, and committed workforce is the life-blood of any enterprise. Ask any successful business or military leader. The most successful companies spend considerable time, energy, and resources to identify, recruit, and hire the best and brightest; then they work at keeping them through optimal working conditions, incentives, and pay.
The military invests mightily in developing and honing the skills of its members; it pays for additional education and it invests in talent. The security of our country depends on it.Read More →
By Shannon Sevier, Vice President for Advocacy for National PTA
National PTA recently released a video series on the Common Core to educate parents on the standards and empower them to support the implementation of the standards at school and home. The series was developed in partnership with The Hunt Institute as part of the association’s ongoing efforts to provide accurate information about the Common Core, ensure parents are knowledgeable about the standards and new assessments, and support parents every step of the way as states transition to the standards.Read More →
By The Hunt Team
Innovation and ingenuity have long been hallmarks of the U.S.’ economy. Our competitive strength is built on the legacy of great innovators – from Alexander Graham Bell and Lewis Latimer to the Wright brothers and Steve Jobs. The U.S. has prized its status as a leader in developing creative thinkers and entrepreneurs, but by many estimates, it is losing ground.
In 2012, foreign companies filed more than half of U.S. technology patent applications, continuing a trend that first began in 2009.1 In addition, the U.S.’ share of high-tech exports is decreasing. Today, China is the single largest exporter of high-tech products.2Read More →
By Delaware Governor Jack Markell
As we approach the four-year anniversary of the Common Core State Standards, it is an appropriate time to remember why and how they were created. We should take this chance to look beyond the difficult but expected obstacles we face in getting the standards up and running, and remember the opportunity they present for children across our country if implemented well.
Former Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue and I co-chaired the initiative to create the standards because we shared the concerns of lawmakers, teachers, school leaders, businesspeople, and parents that expectations for our students were not high enough to prepare them for life after high school. Although the effort was entirely voluntarily, 45 states ultimately adopted this set of fewer, clearer, and more rigorous standards in English language arts and mathematics. With the input of educators, policymakers and experts, we laid out the knowledge and skills students need to be prepared for college and career opportunities and set practical bars for them to achieve.Read More →
By The Hunt Team
In the Common Core Watch blog, “Almost, Peggy, But This Time Not Quite,” Chester E. Finn, Jr. of the Fordham Institute responds to The Wall Street Journal opinion blog, “The Trouble With The Common Core,” by columnist Peggy Noonan. Finn comments in the blog that when it comes to Common Core facts, Noonan is only about 60 percent correct. He explains in the following:Read More →
By Brenda Welburn, Former Executive Director of the National Association of State Boards of Education (NASBE)
Welburn was a moderator and resource expert on improving educator effectiveness through evaluation and compensation reform at The Hunt Institute’s 2014 Holshouser Legislators Retreat. (To learn more about this issue, see The Institute’s special re:VISION series on educator effectiveness here.) She served as the executive director of NASBE from 1994 until 2012 and is known as an association manager and legislative professional with more than 35 years of experience in policy development and analysis in education and human service issues. Below she shares her insight on teacher compensation.
The movement of tying teacher compensation to student achievement has gained momentum throughout the nation, but not without serious debate on how to achieve the goals of the movement without adversely affecting the teaching profession and the learning environment.
To some it seems like a simple premise; those who perform at the highest level should receive the highest rewards. Yet for years policymakers have wrestled with the dilemma of how to support accountability plans that measure proficiency, while acknowledging the significance of student growth and progress among those students with the greatest deficiencies. To do this in a way that rewards milestones in progress – without impeding the goal of genuine student competency – is no easy task. One teacher’s class may have higher test scores, while another’s shows more measurable growth. The idea that student achievement in isolation can be the sole determinant of a teacher’s effectiveness, and thus their compensation package, does not reflect the reality of practice.Read More →
By Cicely Woodard, 8th Grade Mathematics Teacher, Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools
When I first met my student, Mary, in August, she had an infamous mantra. Every time I saw her she said to me, “Mrs. Woodard, I hate math.” Whether in the halls during class change, at my door just before class started, or even in the cafeteria, she had the same greeting. She told me stories of how she had struggled with math in the past and how her parents stayed on her about her failing grades. Enter the Common Core State Standards.Read More →