Do private money and Title I money break even?

In a word, no.  The two kinds of money don’t represent an apples-to-apples comparison because different rules govern how they can be spent, but the raw totals show that schools that get public money do come out a little bit ahead – especially since they don’t have to raise it themselves. Even though this article […]

Common Ground is not so Common

Originally posted on EdCentrist:
In the words of Mark Twain, “We have not all had the good fortune to be ladies. We have not all been generals, or poets, or statesmen; but when the toast works down to the babies, we stand on common ground.” Finding common ground is difficult, yet it’s often necessary for producing pragmatic…

Teacher Effect v. Measurable Teacher “Value”: Some Clarifications

At Peter DeWitt’s Finding Common Ground blog, Angel L. Cintron Jr. offers a guest post, Poverty & Education: Meaningful Discussions or Misguided Diatribes?, confronting the often contentious debate about teacher effect, poverty, and student learning. Cintron offers two points, which he then examines: The proponents of the “poverty is not an excuse” motto are correct in stating that […]

What Is Only PISA Stat that Matters?


On December 15, 2010, Mel Riddile posted PISA: It’s Poverty Not Stupid, detailing that when PISA scores were adjusted by poverty the U.S. actually excelled: With the release of 2013 PISA scores, however, PISA scores adjusted by poverty is not the only PISA stat that matters—although, as Daniel Wydo shows again: This is not a new […]

On the “Wrong” Side of the Anacostia River?

Introduction Education reform is failing traditional D.C. public middle schools located east of the Anacostia River. Although certain popular education debates, i.e. discussions centered on the merits of school choice, common core, teacher evaluations, etc., may dominate the education policy world; The failures, or shortcomings, of education reform throughout D.C.’s high poverty neighborhood public middle […]

Open Letter to My Local Teacher’s Union

Dear President Elizabeth Davis, First and foremost, I wish to extend warm felt congratulations to you, and Ms. Candi Peterson. I wish you a successful term as President and General Vice President of the Washington Teacher’s Union. I wish to thank you, in advance, for taking the time to visit our school, and listening to […]

Dana Woldow: Denying Children Food is Penny Wise, Pound Foolish

Dana Woldow: Denying Children Food is Penny Wise, Pound Foolish

Why I Teach, Where I Teach

Education reforms has truly damaged our ability to understand how chronic poverty affects a student’s ability to learn. Although I can agree with the underlying premise of Rhee’s rhetoric – poverty should not be an excuse to setting high expectations for students – I can’t help but feel frustrated with how that slogan has hijacked […]

Education as the Great Equalizer: “More Myth than Reality”

“While education has been envisioned as the great equalizer, this promise has been more myth than reality,” conclude Coley and Baker in a new report, Poverty and Education: Finding the Way Forward (ETS, July 2013). This data-rich examination of the relationship between education and poverty, both in the US and how that compares internationally, is yet another […]

Poverty Matters Redux

The “poverty is not destiny” mantra is wearing thin as a cousin to the “no excuses” movement in education that demonizes teachers and schools serving high-poverty and minority children. The ugly truth is that both slogans are simply rhetorical strategies for NOT facing inequity, for avoiding confronting the privileged who tend to be the ones […]

solidaridad: The 99 Cents Store School… brought to you by the lucrative charter school industry


First published on solidaridad on July 7, 2013 Lalo Alcaraz’s La Cucaracha strip often features pro-public education items, which are also typically sensitive to ongoing attacks on the teaching profession and the difficulties of teaching. This particular strip is a favorite of mine, highlighting both the institutional racism and profit motive behind the neoliberal school […]

SKrashen: Van Roekel asks “What do you want instead (of the common core)?” My response.

I usually just provide a link through to Professor Stephen Krashen’s posts, but this one merits full reproduction here. Van Roekel asks “What do you want instead (of the common core)?” My response. NEA president Dennis Van Roekel has asked: “If you don’t want it (common core), what do you want instead?” The question assumes […]

Thought for the Day

On my WeatherBug smartphone App, the pollen tab notes: This lack of change in airborne pollen will continue to affect those who suffer from allergies and those who live with allergy sufferers. How is it, then, that the “no excuses” education reform crowd is unable to admit that poverty affects those living in poverty and […]

Breaking Non-News! The Rise of Poverty and the Fall of the Middle Class Affect Schools


The next time you see the world’s richest corporation, Exxon Mobil,  trying to use school bashing to divert attention away from their obscene wealth, minimal tax rate, job export plan, and climate change denial positions, be reminded of the other facts that help us understand what may have contributed to our international test score positions–25th […]

The Lies that Won’t Die (Despite the Evidence)

To embrace the claims and policies of the education reform movement requires ignoring a tremendous amount of evidence to the contrary. The education reform narrative goes something like this: Education is the one true way to overcome all of society’s ills, but our schools are failing, and thus we must take the standards-and-testing accountability reform […]


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