Comparative improvement trajectories

Breaking the Cycle of Failed School Reforms

Using Networked Improvement Communities to learn fast and implement well

The recent history of school reform reveals a disturbing pattern: Over and over, change efforts spread rapidly across the education landscape, despite an absence of knowledge as to how to effect improvements envisioned by reform advocates, or whether it’s even possible. From the push to embrace small high schools in the late 1990s to current mandates to adopt rigorous teacher evaluations based on complex value-added analyses, policy leaders quickly jump on a new reform bandwagon even though very significant technical and logistical issues remain unsolved. Continue

Current Articles

The "New PE" Aims to Build Bodies and Brains

Educators see multiple benefits from increasing opportunities to move

Learning from Student Resistance

Mistakes educators make and how to avoid them

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Differentiated Instruction Reexamined

Teachers weigh the value of multiple lessons

Dual Language Programs on the Rise

“Enrichment” model puts content learning front and center for ELL students

Five Easy Ways to Connect with Students

Five Myths About the Common Core State Standards

Teaching Students to Ask Their Own Questions

One small change can yield big results

Turning Conventional Wisdom on Its Head: Public Schools Outperform Private Schools

Turning Conventional Wisdom on Its Head: Public Schools Outperform Private Schools

Market forces based on concepts of competition, choice, autonomy, and financial incentives applied to public education will improve learning outcomes. This formula for educational improvement, popularized as long ago as 1990 with the publication of Chubb and Moe’s Politics, Markets and America’s Schools, appears to reflect conventional wisdom today. In fact, these beliefs have gained momentum with the advent of No Child Left Behind, the growth of charter school legislation across the country, and the initiatives reflected in the federal Race to the Top requirements and incentives. Continue

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Recommended Reading

From Harvard Education Press:

Something in Common

Robert Rothman, foreword by Governor James B. Hunt, Jr.

Spotlight on Technology in Education

Edited by Nancy Walser, foreword by Will Richardson

Inside School Turnarounds

Laura Pappano, foreword by Karin Chenoweth

Strategic Priorities for School Improvement

Edited by Caroline T. Chauncey, foreword by Robert B. Schwartz

Spotlight on Student Engagement, Motivation, and Achievement

Edited by Caroline T. Chauncey and Nancy Walser