Last Spring, my very intelligent 13-year-old daughter came home and told me she took this very hard statewide test. "Daddy, I had to skip eight questions. We didn't even learn that stuff. Why would they test that?"
The next time you hear a politician or a talking head or someone who has no knowledge of education insist on a simple answer to a complex issue about our public schools, I have a suggestion. Just say no.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan has repeatedly said that college affordability is a priority for this administration. Now it's up to Secretary Duncan and Congress to act before this new plan's high interest rates kick in.
I have spent years blaming others for the failures of our system while encouraging my students to fight back, to take action, to believe in the power of one person to make the changes we need. But I've failed to stand up myself -- until now.
Once the gang has the new school year in their crosshairs and we know what we can do to be most helpful and supportive, everyone's ready to hit the ground running. And then all that's left to do is get all those smelly Sasquatch feet fitted for new back-to-school sneakers!
The new Common Core Standards tests are really being used as weapons against teachers and schools to force them to adopt questionable but expensive curriculum being marketed by test prep companies that seem to have enormous influence over politicians.
Parwiz Abrahimi is a brilliant, good-humored grad student at Yale who hopes to break new ground in science and medicine. It can be surprising to learn that when he was a toddler, however, his family was struggling simply to stay alive in Afghanistan.
While the idea of turning our schools into the backdrop for a war-zone video game is alarming enough, the call for militarization of classrooms threatens to entrench an even deeper dysfunction in our school system.
I would love to see a woman mayor. I would love to see a lesbian mayor. That said, I think a candidate's agenda and history -- voting record, actions taken, plans for future governance -- trump identity politics.
I want to start by making education more affordable and accessible for everyone. How can we do that? How can we revitalize our schools and provide them with needed revenue? The answer is going to shock you.
Over the past 50 years, we've seen substantive improvements in high school graduation rates and college graduation rates for African Americans. But, African Americans' educational progress has not translated into equivalent economic progress.
Education is experiencing a modern phenomenon. Never before have parents been able to participate in their child's education in such a democratic, entrepreneurial, spirited and compassionate way as they do with apps, either by choosing educational apps or developing apps themselves.
When a girl pursues a higher level of education, it can increase her wages and her ability to delay an early marriage. Migration can also expose girls to new ideas and norms and provide autonomy that would otherwise be inaccessible.
Ripley's characters are fascinating, her writing style is accessible, and her observations are fresh. There's no hint of tired education talking points or polarizing rhetoric. Ripley lets facts and firsthand observations guide her conclusions, not the other way around.
All are complex problems, entwined in money, ideology and bureaucracy and exceedingly difficult to repair. But there is one broken element in public education that is apolitical in nature and costs zero to fix.
I loved their little voices quietly detailing their complex dreams. Their proud tones were not lost on anyone. Each child was very focused on the art they created and the play they enjoyed. Their faces were beaming as their work was hung on the walls around us.