Wednesday, May 27, 2009

High Profile Millenials?

Last week was a very big, high profile week for several millenials (who will be taking over the leadership of the country in about 18 years) named Eric, Kris, Shawn, and Mark. Who are they and what do they have in common and why should you care? Tell the Knowledge-able Sourcerer

How does funding for education R&D compare?

How does funding for ED R&D compare? Not well. Certainly it is not a pretty picture when you look at the annual funding charts by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. We have used these data many times before on the Hill and in our outreach. Take another look and cringe … and then get mad:
Agency comparisons
ARRA comparisons (hey, where is education?)
Education’s allocation

Rethinking "Rethinking Restructuring"?

“Rethinking Restructuring” See this Ed Week commentary by Jack Jennings and friends at the Center for Education Policy dispelling some school improvement myths about silver bullets and suggesting that the best strategies use “multiple, coordinated restructuring strategies over many years”. Hmmm. Makes more than a little sense.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Shuttering dealerships or schools?

This past week Arne Duncan made the news by suggesting that national ed reform efforts should be strategically focused on "reconstituting" the thousand lowest performing schools in the country. A good strategy for dealing with chronically failing schools. Arne was in Detroit to discuss some of these ideas. Coincidentally at around the same Chrysler in Detroit announced it was shuttering 700 unprofitable dealerships ... immediately. A good strategy for fixing the bottom line. Is there a meaningful analogy here.


On Saturday, I was part of the "crowd" who participated in the Education Equity Project's rally on the Ellipse in DC commemorating the 55th anniversary of Brown v the Board of Education decision. With the celebrities on stage outnumbering the folks in the audience, it was a deeply disappointing display of interest in the cornerstone of American democracy---education. I don't think the threat of rain had much to do with the dismal turnout. Perhaps it was poor organization (word did not get around) or logistical snafus (late buses) that played a role. I hope that was the case. Otherwise it would be that education can't seem to attract a crowd ... certainly not like anti war demonstrations or anti abortion rallies can in DC. There were large groups of tourists milling around the Lincoln Memorial and Washington monument at the time of the EEP rally but none seemed to be interested in what was happening on the Ellipse. What's wrong with this picture?

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Much to like about the Prez's FY 10 budget request

Me thinks the FY 10 budget request released by the Prez last week was on the mark in many ways for education but it ain't gonna be easy to move it through Congress... Check out what Knowledge Alliance said about it here. It is indeed time to "... unleash America’s ingenuity to solve our most pressing education problems, deliver break-the-mold, research-based solutions to our schools, and
guide a new knowledge and innovation revolution in teaching and learning..."

“The Lake Wobegon Delusion”

See this excellent commentary by Gary Phillips of Knowledge Alliance member American Institutes for Research about re-introducing the idea of a voluntary national test--- an idea that he (and Mike Smith) led in the mid 1990’s when he was at US Department of Education. At that time, it caused a major partisan uproar in the Republican-controlled House of Rep. Is this now a good --- if not bi-partisan--- idea whose time has arrived?