Learning is more than a test score

I believe the growing fixation on high-stakes testing is damaging our public education system. It’s time to make sure that teaching and learning—not testing—drive classroom instruction so that we can give all children the rich, meaningful public education they deserve.

Appropriate assessments are an integral part of a high-quality education system. But an accountability system obsessed with measuring, which punishes teachers and schools, comes at a huge cost.…

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Study: Charter schools outperform public schools in N.J.

By Jessica Calefati/The Star-Ledger

Students who attend New Jersey’s rapidly growing menu of charter schools earned higher math scores than their district school counterparts 40 percent of the time between 2007 and 2011, according to a report released today by Stanford University.

Published by the university’s Center for Research on Education Outcomes, the study examined five years of test score data for students in grades 3-8 who live in towns with charter schools.…

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Michelle Rhee’s right turn

The school-reform advocate touts her “bipartisan” bona fides, but more and more of her allies are conservatives

By Daniel Denvir

Nov. 6 was a good day for Michelle Rhee. The former Washington, D.C., schools chancellor, through her organization StudentsFirst, poured money into state-level campaigns nationwide, winning 86 of 105 races and flipping a net 33 seats to advocates of so-called school reform, a movement that advocates expanding privately run public charter schools, weakening teachers’ unions, increasing the weight of high-stakes standardized tests and, in some cases, using taxpayer dollars to fund private tuition through vouchers as the keys to improving public education.…

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Teacher Seniority Still a Four-Letter Word to Administration — ‘LIFO’

Last-in, first-out seniority continues to irk Christie and Cerf, administration issues survey on subject

By John Mooney

For all its celebration of New Jersey’s new teacher tenure law, the Christie administration hasn’t hidden its lament for the one provision it couldn’t change: seniority protection for tenured teachers in the case of layoffs.

But it hasn’t given up on building its case.…

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