John Thompson

School Reform Lesson: Ravitch Was Right
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School Reform Lesson: Ravitch Was Right

BY JOHN THOMPSON Next January, Diane Ravitch’s long-anticipated book on education reform, Slaying Goliath, will be published but it is being preceded by an anthology, The Wisdom and Wit of Diane Ravitch. I contribute to Ravitch’s blog, and we have only had two types of disagreements. One is addressed in the new book. The first…

Virtual Charter School Is An Epic Failure
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Virtual Charter School Is An Epic Failure

BY JOHN THOMPSON Even many of the staunchest pro-charter corporate reformers are criticizing virtual charters for their poor outcomes and draining resources from public schools. For instance, Todd Ziebarth of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, criticizes the high rates of “churn” they contribute to, their low graduation rates, and low levels of student…

Oklahoma’s ‘Staggering’ Teacher Exodus
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Oklahoma’s ‘Staggering’ Teacher Exodus

BY JOHN THOMPSON The Tulsa World’s headline nailed the big picture, Staggering: 30,000 Oklahoma Teachers Have Left Profession in the Past Six Years, Report Shows. The World’s Michael Dekker cites state Superintendent Joy Hofmeister who explained, “The loss of 30,000 educators over the past six years is staggering – and proof that our schools must…

Facts vs. Emotion
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Facts vs. Emotion

BY JOHN THOMPSON The Planned Parenthood of the Great Plains Legislative Preview began with a discussion of the “Head” versus the “Heart.” Which is the better path to the voters’ and the lawmakers’ minds – intellectual, fact-based analyses or an emotional narrative? Of course, the best path requires a combination of the two. Effective public policy must…

What’s Really Required To Improve Schools
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What’s Really Required To Improve Schools

BY JOHN THOMPSON During MAPS for Kids, one of the nation’s top education experts, the Chicago Consortium for School Research’s John Q. Easton, told us that no school improvement effort has ever worked without trusting relationships. This was the time, the 1990s, when test-driven, market-driven school reform began dismissing the social science and the traditional…

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