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What We’re Up Against: The View from a School Reform Conference

I've been sitting on the idea for this entry since October. I thought the slow news day today for education would be a good time to post. That's a joke, of course, have you seen the report about school districts that have burned through their stimulus funding?Ever go to an arts education conference? Ever go to an arts conference? Let's say American for the Arts, National Performing Arts Convention, APAP, TCG, AEP, etc.Well, for a study in contrast, take a good look at this summit from last fall. It's not just the high-profile participants, but … [Read more...]

College and Career Ready: A Possible Major Goal for the new NCLB

Oops, I did it again. NCLB is out! We're talking about the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. A front page piece appeared in today's Times about where ESEA is headed. Annual Yearly Progress (AYP), the engine of NCLB, appears to be heading for the hills, to be replaced by a broader measurement of progress, and a focus on "college and career readiness."The college and readiness piece is an interesting one, and would certainly be a major advance for ESEA. We've been hearing for quite some time now the concerns in higher education over those … [Read more...]

The Counter-Intuition of Advocacy

Consider these three points: 1. The school district leader says that the overall school budget is increasing each year, and not to worry. And yes, it's true: more money was allocated to education in the city budget.2. The existence of generally supportive school district officials and government leads to increased arts budgets and administrative capacity within the district arts office. 3. Overall, things seem to be improving. Looking at these three real occurrences, it's easy to see how building work in arts education advocacy would become a … [Read more...]

Art, A Music Video by Andrea Dorfman

I love this video. My daughter Sophie and I were watching this morning and she agrees, giving it a four and a half year old's seal of approval.The director is the artist Andrea Dorfman. The music is by Tanya Davis. Click away, it's a sweet and appealing video, and even if you don't like the style of music, I dare you, double dare you, to say you don't like the message. … [Read more...]

The Partnership for 19th Century Skills

I have written from time-to-time about the 21st century skills movement and arts education.There was an interesting piece on the Partnership for 21st Century Learning in last week's Ed Week. In fact, this story is still on the home page of Ed Week. As more and more of the arts education field signs on to P21, it's worth giving this a good read.Whether P21 can successfully convince skeptics of its good intentions remains an open question. Concerns about a lack of specificity in its materials are no longer the sole province of core-content … [Read more...]

A Good Read on Obama’s Education Agenda

It's still very early, and our President has a thing or two to deal with. So, like many, I am still giving him the benefit of the doubt on education (as well as the banks), while liking some of what he's doing in other areas.I know at least one person who has the viewpoint that Obama has managed to do things in education that please both the traditional left and the traditional right. He's given the left much greater dollars than ever before. He's given the right support for charter schools, expanded testing, merit pay for teachers, and more.Of … [Read more...]

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