Support independent journalism.
Education news. In context.
Building Better Schools
From the Statehouse
Beyond High School
Funding & Finance
In the Classroom
Politics & Policy
Sorting the Students
Rise & Shine
Building Better Teachers
Support independent journalism.
2 days ago
Tennessee reveals quicker exit plan for schools in the Achievement School District
A school will return to its local district if it improves and stays off of two consecutive “priority lists, or if it fails to improve.
3 days ago
Counting attendance in school ratings could be smart — or completely misleading
Joshua Starr asks the real question: What are schools doing to create good reasons for students to attend?
April 13, 2017
Vote on Colorado education plan erupts into war of words over which kids benefit
Ultimately, the board agreed to send the 145-page plan to Washington, D.C., for approval.
April 4, 2017
Tennessee overhauls approach to low-performing schools under plan sent to Secretary DeVos
The state will delay its next “priority school” list by one year, while creating a new office to oversee low-performing schools and clarifying the role of its ASD.
April 3, 2017
Does Colorado’s state education plan fall flat? Some who helped write it think so.
The department expects to file the plan after it receives feedback from the governor’s office and the state board takes a formal vote on the plan at its April meeting.
April 3, 2017
Principals matter — and Tennessee wants to do a better job of equipping them
The State Department of Education launches an initiative to cultivate aspiring leaders who want to become principals, as well as to support existing principals.
March 20, 2017
Tennessee lawmakers want to roll back A-F school grades before they’ve been given
Just a year after deciding that every school should get a single letter grade, Tennessee lawmakers are poised to take it back.
March 14, 2017
Yes, Congress scrapped Obama-era education rules. But states say little is changing
What is changing? A requirement for states to get input from community members. But that doesn't mean input is being scrapped, either.
on the record
March 6, 2017
Congressman Jared Polis is more worried about Congress than about Betsy DeVos. Here’s why.
The Boulder Democrat is nevertheless vowing to keep an eye on the secretary.
February 21, 2017
McQueen rips Tennessee’s school turnaround work as ineffectual, overdue
Calling outcomes "a little embarrassing," Education Commissioner Candice McQueen notes that the state has only moved 10 schools off its “priority” list since 2012.
February 16, 2017
Betsy DeVos’s first week at the U.S. Education Department: What you need to know
She’s having trouble getting into schools, inspired some people to jump into public service, and is still attracting attention far beyond the usual education audience.
February 10, 2017
Colorado’s education department has a plan. And they want to know what you think about it.
Public comment on Colorado's proposed education plan is open until March 10.
February 8, 2017
Tennessee’s Achievement School District would return to its original purpose under a bill that its leaders support
Lawmakers will consider a bill that would stop the state-run district from starting new charter schools, rather than just overhauling struggling schools.
Equity and ESSA
January 27, 2017
Famed researcher Linda Darling-Hammond on the future of New York education — and what she makes of Betsy DeVos
An influential education researcher, who has been helping New York implement ESSA, spells out how the state can focus on equity under the new law.
January 19, 2017
Will Betsy DeVos change education as you know it? Probably not — but your state lawmakers could
The most important upcoming decisions about schools won’t be made by DeVos. They’ll happen in the state legislatures.
January 19, 2017
Tennessee ESSA draft can be improved to help kids of color, says equity group
The Tennessee Educational Equity Coalition is one of the first groups to weigh in on assets and shortcomings in the state's plan.
January 13, 2017
Sponsor of Tennessee’s A-F school grading law wants launch postponed
Rep. Glen Casada says the state should hold off because schools are still transitioning to a new Tennessee test.
January 9, 2017
Here are four education issues to watch as Tennessee’s legislature kicks off
Tennessee lawmakers expect to revisit two perennial questions about school spending and vouchers during the 110th General Assembly, which starts this week.
year in review
December 21, 2016
Ten stories defining Tennessee public education in 2016
From testing and standards to school funding and bus safety, Tennessee has navigated a tumultuous and historic year.
December 20, 2016
Tennessee’s completed schools plan is finally out. Here’s what insiders are saying.
The plan, released in response to a sweeping new federal education law, has the potential to reshape the state’s 1,600 public schools.
Making the grade
December 15, 2016
Tennessee schools soon will receive letter grades. But will poverty be considered?
Not everyone is in agreement about what should constitute an A under Tennessee's new system for evaluating schools.
December 12, 2016
Tennessee’s school turnaround district might lose some power. Here’s why.
Under proposed changes prompted by a new federal law, the Achievement School District would have less flexibility over which schools it can take over.
It's a start
December 6, 2016
Here’s a first look at how Tennessee schools could change under new federal law
The Tennessee Department of Education kicks off meetings about its plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act.
December 6, 2016
New network launches to highlight policies impacting Tennessee’s immigrant students
Tennessee’s growing immigrant population spawns a network for educators, parents and advocates of students who are learning to speak English.
To grade or not to grade?
November 28, 2016
Feds say Indiana can drop its A-F system. But does it want to?
Today federal officials made two announcements about ESSA.
Change in the air
November 11, 2016
What does Trump’s win mean for Colorado schools? Here are some good guesses.
Trump has said little about his education priorities.
October 11, 2016
How Tennessee might drastically change testing, and other potential changes to the state’s schools
State officials share their takeaways from nearly six months of discussions on how Tennessee should adapt to the sweeping new federal education law.
September 12, 2016
What Tennessee’s decision to pull out of a social-emotional learning collaborative means
Tennessee will not get to collaborate with other states — and vice versa — as they draft guidelines around social-emotional learning.
September 12, 2016
Indiana debates giving state exams to newly arrived immigrants
Indiana must soon decide between two options for measuring how well immigrant students are doing in school.
August 22, 2016
State committee ponders changes to school A-F grade system — again
Indiana is beginning the tedious, but important, work of making sure every part of its A-F school grading system meets new federal education rules.
All the committees
August 9, 2016
Why are there two committees in Colorado working on the nation’s new education law?
At both meetings, members worried that their respective work could end in a political showdown.
hold on wait a minute
August 5, 2016
Colorado to U.S. Department of Education: Your proposed rules will stifle us
In a strongly worded letter, interim Education Commissioner Katy Anthes told the federal government they should restart the regulation process from scratch.
ESSA and Equity
August 4, 2016
Here’s how advocates for students of color want Tennessee to change its education rules
ESSA could offer a pivotal moment for students of color in Tennessee, depending on how the law is implemented.
The chosen ones
July 21, 2016
Meet the 20 people who will help reshape Colorado’s education policies
Among the topics the committee and its various sub-committees must address: standards, testing and teacher quality.
More than scores
July 20, 2016
Beyond test scores, Tennessee looks at how to evaluate districts and schools under ESSA
With the switch to ESSA looming, state leaders consider which metrics to include in the state's accountability plan.
the long view
July 13, 2016
Why this year’s failed TNReady test leaves Tennessee with challenges for years to come
The decision to cancel standardized testing this year will impact the state's accountability system for at least three years.
July 12, 2016
No Child Left Behind is gone. Here’s how new federal law could affect Indiana schools
As Indiana tries to decide the future of testing in classrooms across the state, it’s also dealing with complicated new federal rules.
List of principles
July 11, 2016
What makes a highly effective school? New York State takes its first crack at describing what will count
The state's new accountability system could be based on these 20 principles.
bill of goods?
July 7, 2016
Colorado officials are not happy with how the new federal education law is playing out. Here’s why.
Department officials told the board they believed about a quarter of the proposed regulations put new limits on states.
July 6, 2016
Colorado is rethinking all of its major education policies. And everyone is jockeying for influence.
State Board of Education chairman Steve Durham has four ideas. See them here first.
July 6, 2016
How to measure school quality beyond test scores? State officials count the ways
Ultimately, the state will have to choose just one to use in its new A-F letter grade system, but for now, all are under consideration, state education officials say.
June 30, 2016
Here are the players helping to draft Tennessee’s transition plan to the new federal education law
An array of educators, researchers and advocates will help the State Department of Education plan for a new era in education dictated by the Every Student Succeeds Act.
June 29, 2016
New federal education law’s impact on students of color highlighted in Tennessee meeting with John King
U.S. Secretary of Education John King met with members of the Tennessee Education Equity Coalition on Tuesday for a discussion about the new federal education law.
June 14, 2016
Theme of Tennessee’s testing task force meeting: ‘We’re in a transition phase’
Commissioner Candice McQueen's testing task force focuses on how the state will reshape its accountability system in light of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act.
May 25, 2016
McQueen reconvenes testing task force on TNReady and more
The spotlight will be bigger on the work of this year's task force following the bumpy rollout of TNReady — and its eventual cancellation for grades 3-8.
May 24, 2016
As new federal education law looms, McQueen seeks input for Tennessee plan
The State Department of Education invites Tennesseans to share their ideas about how Tennessee should use leeway granted to states under the new federal education law.
May 16, 2016
Push to overhaul tests in New York hits a persistent roadblock: cost
Education officials in New York are hitting a roadblock as they try to introduce project-based assessments.
May 2, 2016
Quest for teacher diversity brings U.S. schools chief John King and Boston educators together
King — himself once a black teacher in Boston who has attributed his own success in part to teachers of color — said he doesn’t want teacher diversity left up to chance.
a new course
April 13, 2016
Commissioner Crandall wants Colorado to rethink everything from tests to teacher recruitment
But some board members are skeptical about Crandall’s plans.
February 19, 2016
New law, old problem: Why ESSA leaves teachers with an ongoing testing dilemma
Susan Fine: If a seventh grader needs to study finding the area of a rectangle, there’s little external incentive for a teacher to devote class time to filling the gap.
RISE & SHINE
You are now subscribed!