The power of one: New research shows black students see big benefits from a single black teacher
New research shows that years after having even one black teacher in elementary school, black students experience major benefits, from being less likely to drop out of high school to being more likely to aspire to college and take college entrance exams. The recent study comes as there has been increasing attention to diversifying the teaching force,...
By Matt Barnum | April 10, 2017
Where education research, politics and policy intersect: 3 states reveal how data help shape their ESSA plans
It’s a common refrain in education that research isn’t used wisely, or at all, to inform policy. As states have to redesign their accountability systems under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the new federal K-12 law, policymakers have the opportunity anew to use evidence to help guide their decisions. That was the topic of...
By Matt Barnum | April 5, 2017
The certification maze: Why teachers who cross state lines can’t find their way back to the classroom
Kiersten Franz has a bachelor’s degree in math, a master’s in education, and several years’ teaching experience under her belt — excellent qualifications, presumably, for becoming a New York City high school statistics teacher. But her record wasn’t quite good enough to meet New York state’s stringent licensure requirements. Because her training was out-of-state and...
By Matt Barnum | March 31, 2017
Former Superintendent John Deasy previews new initiative to rethink juvenile prisons
See previous interviews by The 74: Former Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, U.S. Senator and Education Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander, University of Michigan economist Susan Dynarski, Harvard Education School Dean Jim Ryan. Full 74 Interview archive here. As superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District, John Deasy laid out an ambitious vision for improving schools. Today, his supporters say...
By Matt Barnum | September 21, 2016
Exclusive: Amendment adds imaginary testing standard to Democratic education platform
Democrats added a misleading reference to standardized tests to the party platform over the weekend, requiring they meet a reliability standard that doesn’t actually exist. “[W]e believe that standardized tests must meet American Statistical Association standards for reliability and validity,” the amendment reads, saying this would “strike a better balance on testing, so that it...
By Matt Barnum | July 15, 2016
California in the age of ESSA: Can schools be held accountable without real consequences
This is the last in a three-part series examining California’s approach to education data and school accountability. Part One surveyed how the state’s skepticism of test-based accountability starts at the top with Gov. Jerry Brown, who successfully took on the federal government; Part Two explored how the elimination of certain data systems has limited educational research...
By Matt Barnum | June 30, 2016
The purge: California leaves researchers (and policymakers) in the dark by gutting education data
This is the second in a three-part series examining California’s approach to education data and school accountability. Part One looks at how the state’s skepticism of test-based accountability starts at the top with Gov. Jerry Brown, who successfully took on the federal government. Part Three will consider what the next era of accountability in California...
By Matt Barnum | June 29, 2016
How Gov. Brown fought the federal government on education policy — and won
This is the first in a three-part series examining California’s approach to education data and school accountability. Part Two explores how the elimination of certain data systems has limited educational research in one of the country’s most consequential states. Part Three will consider what the next era of accountability in California might look like under the new...
By Matt Barnum | June 28, 2016
The 74 interview: Prof. Matt Delmont on how northern whites used busing to derail school integration
Arizona State University history professor Matt Delmont’s recent book, “Why Busing Failed,” challenges the conventional narrative around why school integration fell so short — that segregated neighborhood schools were naturally occurring, that busing could never effectively change that — and examines the calculated backlash, including from a complicit media, that doomed desegregation before it began. Delmont and...
By Matt Barnum | May 6, 2016
12th-graders’ federal tests scores dip in math and reading while more manage to graduate
The nation’s 12th-grade students did slightly worse on national math and reading tests in 2015 than high school seniors did in 2013, according to National Assessment of Educational Progress results released today, even as high school graduation rates got better. The overall score decreases were quite small — roughly two points in math and a single...
By Matt Barnum | April 27, 2016