Real improvement can only come when we address the big picture: It's not only a matter of improving teacher training, but also of attracting more innovation into the sector, through the engagement of new players and new providers.
A blizzard of education reports and studies appears every year. This swirl of information, analysis, and commentary -- some of which is contradictory -- makes it difficult to understand the condition of America's public schools. In short, are the schools getting better or worse?
Public investments in schools vary greatly across states, as do other policies that may boost or depress scores. This year, three states received individual PISA rankings -- as if they were independent countries. This can help us connect the dots between those disparities and scores.
If we don't fix education -- politicians and pundits proclaim -- we are in for big trouble. News flash: We're already in big trouble. We don't have an education problem in America. We have a social disease.
Part of the problem in D.C., and nationwide, is the stigma that comes from not pursuing a traditional, college-oriented high school diploma. Our obsession with four-year colleges is certainly one of the reasons why disconnected youth see dropping out as their only other option.
By nurturing and encouraging girls' early interest in STEM and making it fun for them, we can keep them engaged, help them perform better in school and ultimately, encourage them to pursue careers in STEM fields.
Systematic pursuit of children's wellbeing and happiness in secure environments takes precedence over measured academic achievements in Finnish schools, according to Pasi Sahlberg, author of the award-winning book, Finnish Lessons: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland?
According to Andreas Schleicher of OECD, the United States is unique among countries in that the generation of workers entering the US workforce does not have higher college attainment levels than the generation about to leave the workforce.
If education is to fulfill its essential role in America as the great equalizer, big achievement gaps and opportunity gaps must close -- and all students must receive a world-class education that genuinely prepares them for colleges and careers in the 21st century.
Education should not be the privilege of a select few, but the basic civil right of every American child. We must act conclusively to narrow our domestic achievement gap and to narrow our international achievement gap so that our students will be able to compete globally in the next decade.
How do teachers motivate students in the Singapore school system? How do they level the playing field between rich and poor students? How do they handle behavioral problems? Are they obsessed with testing?
Our country is guilty of becoming increasingly apathetic about education. As a rule, teachers are grossly undervalued; their significance is continually diminished and their contributions go highly underrated.
A holistic approach brings together elements that support the development of a child who is healthy, knowledgeable, motivated, and engaged, seeking to ensure all that is required for successful life and preparation for society.