Acting French
I spent the majority of this summer at Middlebury College, studying at l’École Française. I had never been to Vermont. I have not been many places at all. I did not have an adult passport until I was 37 years old. Sometimes I regret this. And then sometimes not.
The Plot Against Public Education
Bill Gates had an idea. He was passionate about it, absolutely sure he had a winner. His idea? America’s high schools were too big. When a multibillionaire gets an idea, just about everybody leans in to listen.
Is Coding the New Literacy?
In the winter of 2011, a handful of software engineers landed in Boston just ahead of a crippling snowstorm. They were there as part of Code for America, a program that places idealistic young coders and designers in city halls across the country for a year.
Why Do Americans Stink at Math?
When Akihiko Takahashi was a junior in college in 1978, he was like most of the other students at his university in suburban Tokyo. He had a vague sense of wanting to accomplish something but no clue what that something should be.
Don't Send Your Kid to the Ivy League The nation's top colleges are turning our kids into zombies
In the spring of 2008, I did a daylong stint on the Yale admissions committee. We—that is, three admissions staff, a member of the college dean’s office, and me, the faculty representative—were going through submissions from eastern Pennsylvania.
Who Gets to Graduate?
For as long as she could remember, Vanessa Brewer had her mind set on going to college.
Finnish Education Chief: 'We Created a School System Based on Equality'
Finnish education often seems paradoxical to outside observers because it appears to break a lot of the rules we take for granted. Finnish children don’t begin school until age 7. They have more recess, shorter school hours than many U.S.
The Myth of Chinese Super Schools
Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon? Why China Has the Best (and Worst) Education System in the World Jossey-Bass, 254 pp., $26.
How A Disgraced College Chain Trapped Its Students In Poverty
Not long ago, Amber Brown, a student at Everest University, saw an article on Facebook about one of the many lawsuits against her school.
Inside the Mammoth Backlash to Common Core
ONE NIGHT LAST SEPTEMBER, a 46-year-old Veterans Administration research manager named Robert Small showed up at a public meeting with state education officials in Towson*, a Maryland suburb, with a pen, a notebook, and an ax to grind.
The New Yorker
Late one night in December, 2009, a black Chevy Tahoe in a caravan of cops and residents moved slowly through some of the most dangerous neighborhoods of Newark. In the back sat the Democratic mayor, Cory Booker, and the Republican governor-elect of New Jersey, Chris Christie.
Why Poor Schools Can’t Win at Standardized Testing
You hear a lot nowadays about the magic of big data. Getting hold of the right numbers can increase revenue, improve decision-making, or help you find a mate—or so the thinking goes. In 2009, U.S.
A New SAT Aims to Realign With Schoolwork
Saying its college admission exams do not focus enough on the important academic skills, the College Board announced on Wednesday a fundamental rethinking of the SAT, ending the longstanding penalty for guessing wrong, cutting obscure vocabulary words and making the essay optional.
Americans Think We Have the World’s Best Colleges. We Don’t.
Americans have a split vision of education. Conventional wisdom has long held that our K-12 schools are mediocre or worse, while our colleges and universities are world class.
A Middle-School Cheating Scandal
One afternoon in the spring of 2006, Damany Lewis, a math teacher at Parks Middle School, in Atlanta, unlocked the room where standardized tests were kept.
This Teacher Taught His Class A Powerful Lesson About Privilege
1. I once saw a high school teacher lead a simple, powerful exercise to teach his class about privilege and social mobility. He started by giving each student a scrap piece of paper and asked them to crumple it up. View this image › 2. Then he moved the recycling bin to the front of the room.
How To Think
Sebastian Garcia made a mistake but he couldn’t figure it out. At the 2011 National Junior High Chess Championship he was looking strong and heading towards a victory. Then he made a mistake, squandering his advantage. A few moves later the collapse was complete.
Why Is American Teaching So Bad?
In 1853, the most important man in nineteenth-century American education gave a speech praising female teachers. Horace Mann was the head of the growing common school system in Massachusetts, where women teachers already outnumbered men by four to one.