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School innovations require not just funding, but moving away from current 'factory model'

What policy leaders and lawmakers need to assess is how much control they are willing to give up in order to grant sufficient latitude to teachers and administrators to take risks in designing study plans and class structures.

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What do we really mean when we say ‘personalized learning’?

We often say we want creativity and innovation – personalization – but every mechanism we use to measure it is through control and compliance.

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What will reading instruction in kindergarten cost in the long haul?

What will be the impact of the current mandates for teachers, families and the wider society in the long haul if policymakers continue with the kindergarten standards from the Common Core? How many children will only do what is required to complete assigned tasks and become disengaged from the learning process?

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Blind-sided by school bond proposals

Texas public schools are adrift in a sea of red ink. Voters bear some responsibility for Texas' emerging local debt crisis as they have approved most school bond proposals over the years. But with the absence of pertinent financial information at the ballot box, it's little wonder that local debt has become a major problem.

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State can learn much from new study on teachers

A Minnesota Department of Education study found that school leaders and policy setters should boost efforts to recruit more diverse teaching staffs and either encourage more people to enter certain teaching fields or develop their own. This report offers information that can help to narrow learning disparities and improve instruction.

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Keeping charter school seats filled

Charter leaders should commit to immediately reform their K12 backfill policies for the 2015 lottery season. Longer term, charter authorizers or legislators should require policies that free up all available seats for new students.

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Reading instruction and the achievement gap

Schools have been so focused on building the skill of early reading that too many have ignored the need for students to know a great deal of content in order to understand what they are reading. Too many have undervalued the role instruction in science, history and the arts play in reading instruction.

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Oregon's high school students deserve full schedules

Last week, the Oregon Board of Education took a courageous step: By the 2018-19 school year, all schools must hand out a full schedule to at least four in five students. Sadly, a part-time high school schedule is not uncommon in Oregon.

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Closing the math gap for boys

After just a single year in Chicago’s intensive math tutoring and mentoring program, known as Match, participants who were up to 10 years behind in math ended up as much as two years ahead of students in a control group who didn’t get this help.

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It will take more than money to improve Idaho's schools

Idaho's State Board of Education is proposing to change significantly the way Idaho pays and evaluates teachers. Their proposal will markedly increase cost. But will their proposals actually make things better?

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