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Jonah Edelman
Jonah Edelman wants to make our public schools better. An advocate for public education in America, Jonah is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Stand for Children, a growing and influential political voice for students. He is committed to mobilizing Americans around a common goal of changing the odds for our children.

As a second generation civil rights leader – his mother, Marian Wright Edelman, was the first African American woman admitted to the Mississippi bar and his father, Peter Edelman, was a close aide to Robert F. Kennedy – Jonah helped organize Stand for Children's historic founding rally in Washington, D.C.. The “Stand for Children Day” rally was attended by more than 300,000 people, and was the largest rally for children in American history. Jonah was recognized on as one of the nation’s top education activists for 2011.

Jonah Edelman was born and raised in Washington, D.C., graduated from Yale University in 1992, and attended Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship, where in three years (1992-1995) he earned masters and doctor of philosophy degrees in politics.

He lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife Charese and their twin sons, Levi and Elijah, who are in first grade in a public school.

Entries by Jonah Edelman

One Thing All Parents Should Know

(0) Comments | Posted September 12, 2013 | 9:05 AM

Common Core Academic Standards, clear standards that outline what kids need to know in each grade to be prepared for college and career training, are a terrific step forward for students and teachers across the United States. They're common sense, and they're a big deal.

But there's...

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Book Review: The Smartest Kids in the World and How They Got That Way by Amanda Ripley

(6) Comments | Posted August 13, 2013 | 12:45 PM

The Smartest Kids in the World: And How They Got That Way is a gripping new book by Amanda Ripley that answers the question, "what exactly is happening in classrooms in the countries that out-perform the U.S. academically?" Ripley investigates this question by spending time where the...

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Moving to Higher Standards

(0) Comments | Posted July 22, 2013 | 8:15 PM

Shane Cockrell is a father of two who grew up in a military family and is now in the military himself. Shane's not new to the fact that education standards between states are radically different: When he was a child his family moved from Connecticut to South Carolina, and his...

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Summer Reading

(6) Comments | Posted June 21, 2013 | 8:58 AM


Summer is here!

For middle class children across the country, summer is an opportunity for fun, sleeping in, and developmental activities. Middle class kids usually spend their summers at camps and playing sports, and have support at home to do reading and math enrichment. This means that, come...

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What About Them?

(1) Comments | Posted June 12, 2013 | 6:53 PM

In some neighborhoods, maybe yours, it feels like high school dropouts and the challenges they face don't affect you. But, in reality, they do. They affect your car insurance rates. They affect your health insurance premiums. They affect you every time you pay your state taxes. Consider this:

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The Pressing Need for Preschool

(14) Comments | Posted June 3, 2013 | 3:28 PM

I've written about the need for universal early childhood education before and I'll write about it again. This time I'll assume that you, like 70 percent of Americans, support increasing access to high quality preschool. My goal, then, is to arm you with the facts so...

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Appreciate Teachers Today, Tomorrow and This Year

(0) Comments | Posted May 7, 2013 | 5:12 PM

Teacher Appreciation Day always makes me think of Mrs. Holland, my third grade teacher. I switched mid-year into her classroom, and the transition was challenging. But Mrs. Holland was with me every step of the way. She made special arrangements for me to be able to sit with...

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RNC Wrong to Oppose Common Core Standards

(7) Comments | Posted April 19, 2013 | 3:43 PM

My twin sons, now in public school in Oregon, are shaping up to be pretty good basketball players. They're seven years old, and they play on an 8 foot basket. Imagine that throughout elementary, middle, and high school, they continue playing on this 8 foot basket. They're stars! Then they...

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Preschool Now!

(9) Comments | Posted April 11, 2013 | 5:34 PM

President Obama's budget proposes a $75 billion investment over the next 10 years in preschool, home visits, early Head Start, and childcare. I could not be more enthusiastic about this critical investment in America's future. As I have written previously, funding early childhood education is...

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I Am Not a Loan

(1) Comments | Posted April 5, 2013 | 5:21 PM

For the last two years, Stand for Children has been teaching Stand University for Parents, ten weeks of classes to support elementary school parents to get more involved in their children's education. One of the most exciting classes to sit in on, "Pathway to College" introduces parents to...

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Women Who Stand

(0) Comments | Posted March 28, 2013 | 9:57 AM

This month, Stand for Children's Tyler Whitmire has launched our Women Who Stand series: interviews with inspirational women in education.

Some of the interviews in particular have stuck with me.

Superintendent Karen Williams talks about growing up African-American in an all-white school district in...

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Expect More!

(28) Comments | Posted March 18, 2013 | 1:27 PM

Most people have a vague idea of what "school-to-prison pipeline" means: that certain schools in certain neighborhoods provide a steady stream of young men and women to state penitentiaries. But in Dallas, Texas, Stand for Children dug deeper and investigated what that school-to-prison pipeline actually means for students and their...

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We Owe Our Kids Universal Preschool

(0) Comments | Posted March 7, 2013 | 1:24 PM

Since the State of the Union, President Obama has repeatedly pledged to work with states to make high quality pre-school available to all children. Every time he does I immediately think of Tre Thompson, a four-year old in Oklahoma.

Tre's mom, Christina Thompson, cannot believe how much her son...

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Mr. President: If You Will Stand Up for Meaningful Reforms, We Will Stand With You

(0) Comments | Posted December 20, 2012 | 2:58 PM

The Sandy Hook tragedy has shaken many of us to our core.

I have two boys the same age as many of the precious children who lost their lives last week. Their teachers remind me of those brave educators who died last Friday. As I tuck my children into...

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Our Children Need a Budget Compromise Today

(5) Comments | Posted December 12, 2012 | 10:35 AM

There have been countless news stories about the damage that will be inflicted on our economy if we go over the fiscal cliff. But reporters have almost completely ignored the impact it will have on children and families if Republicans and Democrats can't broker a last-minute agreement. Four billion will...

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Report from the States: Standing up for Students is Good Politics

(4) Comments | Posted November 4, 2010 | 9:41 PM

In every election, there are winners and losers. While the media measures winners and losers in terms of parties and politicians, Stand for Children's North Star is students. And with that measure in mind, students were winners in several states on election day.

Across the country, Stand for Children...

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