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Robert Schwartz
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Entries by Robert Schwartz

Set Students Free With Technology in Schools

(17) Comments | Posted November 9, 2012 | 5:51 PM

There is a growing movement in schools to go 1-1 -- namely one computer device per student. This could be part of a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) initiative, a small pilot with one motivated teacher in a school, or a full-scale district...

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The Future of Education Is (Almost) Here

(2) Comments | Posted October 17, 2012 | 12:26 PM

I've admittedly become jaded by all of the "innovations" in education. Most of these innovations are recycled, renamed, and repackaged ideas and concepts from generations past in education. They are faddish, reactionary, and may or may not marginally improve student learning or teacher productivity. Having spent nearly 20 years in...

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Enabling Schools of the Future

(0) Comments | Posted May 15, 2012 | 8:52 AM

Maybe I'm too close to it. I've started schools, run schools, taught in schools, went to school, visited schools, and they all look pretty much the same.

As I imagine what schools may look like, I bump up against my pre-conceived and ingrained notions of what...

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Invest in Young Men and Boys of Color Now

(13) Comments | Posted August 17, 2011 | 7:18 PM

August 17, 2011 in Sacramento, CA launches a much-needed series of hearings on the state of Boys and Men of Color in California. A bi-partisan group of eight legislators will be charged with examining key issues affecting the health and well-being of men and boys of color in...

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Why Charters and College Access Programs Should Cream

(28) Comments | Posted May 24, 2011 | 1:06 PM

For the past 10 years I have worked in two education sectors frequently tagged with the "creaming" label - charter schools and a nonprofit focused on STEM education for high-potential students. The debate as to whether or not this accusation is true is unimportant. In fact,...

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Middle School 'Graduation' Is No Time for Excessive Celebration

(6) Comments | Posted May 11, 2011 | 2:00 PM

The first graduation ceremony I attended as a teacher was back in 1994. I was excited. All around our one city block campus neighborhood entrepreneurs set up tables selling balloons, teddy bears, and flowers with proclamations such as, "Congratulations, Graduate!" and "Class of '94". Parents rented limos, girls bought formal...

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Nonprofits Can do More to Promote Diversity

(1) Comments | Posted April 12, 2011 | 5:08 PM

For years, Fortune 500 companies have been lambasted in the press for their lack of attention to issues of diversity for people of color. Large tech companies sued the federal government to block access to their demographic data, knowing that it too would tell the same...

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Can Everyone Please Shut Up and Listen!?

(2) Comments | Posted March 30, 2011 | 1:16 PM

I used to be glad that so many people were talking about education. Now, I don't know what to believe anymore as everyone keeps talking and talking and talking. We're failing on international measures. we're doing fine. We need smaller class sizes;...

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Talent Poaching Revs Up For Teachers

(4) Comments | Posted March 8, 2011 | 9:25 AM

Teacher hiring season is revving up, and with the economy in shambles schools are fighting over top teaching talent. I'm sorry, that was the headline about Silicon Valley tech firms -- but for them, the economy is looking up and they really are fighting for the best talent.

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Is This the Teachers Unions Alamo or a Chance for Resurgence?

(10) Comments | Posted February 24, 2011 | 11:17 AM

Democrats in the White House and Republicans in the state houses are challenging the collective bargaining and tenure rights of teachers unions. "Waiting for Superman" vilified unions as standing in the way of educational progress. Large foundations are pressing for fundamental change...

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Bringing Teach for America Back to the Core

(26) Comments | Posted February 13, 2011 | 12:33 PM

I prepare to depart for the 20th Anniversary Alumni Summit for Teach for America in Washington, D.C. and I reflect on why I am attending. Some of the reasons are obvious -- seeing friends and acquaintances from long ago (I joined TFA in 1994), networking with some of...

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The Best and Brightest Will Never Teach

(28) Comments | Posted February 2, 2011 | 3:27 PM

"Hire the best and brightest". After all, that's what they do in Finland and Korea and look at their international test score results. That's what McKinsey and Co. found. The fundamental problem with this premise is that the best and the brightest college graduates...

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Want to Raise Test Scores? Teach Science

(8) Comments | Posted January 27, 2011 | 11:14 AM

I saw the writing on the wall back in 1998. I was teaching a course for an urban school district's intern program entitled, "Science for Elementary School Teachers". First night of class and 26 first-year teachers blankly stared at me while I dazzled them with a science demonstration. An emboldened...

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