4 Columns Masonry Full Width

Chalkbeat’s great piece on the “neighborhood schools” definition dance

The term “neighborhood school” gets thrown around a lot in the education conversation, oftentimes as kind of the anti-thesis of charter and “choice” schools. As in: “The district should focus more on neighborhood schools and less on charter schools.” Or...
Read More →

“I think this is going to go downhill.’ And it did’

“When he came in the classroom, I immediately told my classmates, ‘Get your phones out, get your phones out. I think this is going to go downhill.’ And it did.” That’s what Spring Valley High School student Niya Kelly told...
Read More →

Would the real Goliath please stand up? (Or at least stop pretending to be David)

“This is a David vs. Goliath issue.” That was the defense that Colorado educator and activist Angela Engel used in this Chalkbeat Colorado story to defend the plagiarism of Denver school board candidate Kristi Butkovich, who used the thoughts of...
Read More →

Parents, step up to the mic on testing

OK, I think I’ve waited long enough. We’re far enough into the school year (and far enough into my blog) that it’s safe to talk about testing, right? Good, I’ll make it quick. I like tests—tests of character, tests of...
Read More →

Local debates not immune from political bluster

There was a small, local school board debate in Denver Tuesday night, but it had some of the big-time bluster and grandstanding that’s more common on the national stage. Kristi Butkovich, running in Southeast Denver against incumbent Anne Rowe for...
Read More →

Arne the Meddler

Everyone seems to agree that US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is a nice guy who cares a lot about kids. The question up for debate is: Is he a Meddler? You know, a budinski—prone to sticking one’s nose in...
Read More →

When the airing of grievances drowns out the common good…for kids

Norma Rae or Frank Costanza. That’s essentially the polar caricatures of teachers unions that are at play in the uber-polarized debate on public education. A strong voice committed to advocating for the common good? Or a shrill voice committed to the airing of...
Read More →

A Look at Integration and Neighborhood Schools Through a Different Lens

“The job is simply too hard.” I’ve had a hard time getting that line out of my head since I heard Ira Glass say it in the prologue to the recent “This American Life” series on school integration, which includes...
Read More →

Of white bread, papier-mâché, and the original “education reformer”

I can still remember circling the Cook County Jail at 26th and California in my brand-new silver Honda Civic, looking for a parking spot. And I can still remember pretty much the total breadth of my knowledge of the city...
Read More →