The Education Evolving Blog

March 23, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

Minnesota has an extreme shortage of teachers of color and American Indian teachers. According to a recent report by the Minnesota Department of Education (MDE), teachers of color and American Indian teachers comprise only 4.23 percent of Minnesota teachers, as compared to 31 percent of students.

The severity of the problem is further exacerbated when the data is disaggregated by ethnicity.

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March 15, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

In a recent Star Tribune commentary, Education Evolving and several district superintendents urged the Minnesota Legislature to create Innovation Zones. We asserted, “Education in Minnesota badly needs innovation. The question is: When will legislators realize that one size does not fit all?”

The chance came last Thursday when the Minnesota Senate’s Education Policy Committee heard testimony on the Innovation Zone (IZ) bill,...

March 7, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

Minnesota’s teacher licensure system has been a topic of contention for several years, with a March 2016 Office of the Legislative Auditor (OLA) report finding the system “complex, unclear, and confusing.”

There is currently a bill in the Senate, S.F. 4, which would completely restructure the state’s teacher licensure system. A companion bill,...

February 27, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

Last Thursday, the Minnesota House of Representatives’ Education Innovation Policy Committee and the Senate’s E-12 Policy Committee heard testimony regarding the Minnesota Department of Education’s (MDE) Policy Bill HF 1376/S.F 1222. While the bill covers several topics that affect public education in general, this post will focus on two of the concerns that...

February 23, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

Since its inception in 1998, Google has grown from two to over just 57,000 employees. In order to maintain their start-up culture and increase staff retention, Google has allowed their employees to design their own desks and workstations, in addition to creating unconventional workspaces that include bean bag chairs, couches, hammocks, and in tents. The result looks a little chaotic but, according to Google, that is how their employees like it.

Walking into Venture Academy, a Southeast Minneapolis middle and high charter school, is like walking into Google. To the outside eye, one...

February 14, 2017

This post was written by guest-bloggers Carrie Bakken, Program Coordinator & Teacher at Avalon Charter School, and Julene Oxton, Innovation Coordinator for Lakeville Public Schools and a lead developer of Impact Academy. They are ambassadors for the Teacher-Powered Schools Initiative, run by Education Evolving and CTQ.

As long time educators and members of teacher teams that have started teacher-powered schools in Minnesota—Impact...

February 9, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

On Tuesday, the Senate confirmed Betsy DeVos as education secretary, 51-50. In an unprecedented move, Vice President Pence had to cast the tie-breaking vote after two Republican senators went against party lines.

After her confirmation, American Federation of Teachers (AFT) president Randi Weingarten issued a press release, in which she wrote, “DeVos shows an antipathy for public schools;...

February 2, 2017

Across the country, a growing movement of teacher teams at over 100 schools in 18 states are transforming student learning and the teaching profession through teacher-powered schools—that is, schools designed and run by teams of teachers. Over the weekend, 275 educators and advocates from 22 states gathered in Los Angeles for the second Teacher-Powered Schools National Conference.

Site Visits to Teacher-Powered Schools in Action

The conference, hosted by Education Evolving (EE) and the Center for Teaching...

January 19, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

Yesterday, the Minnesota House of Representative’s Education Finance Committee, chaired by Representative Loon, convened to hear an overview on Minnesota charter schools. This was the first time since 2009 that the Committee had a meeting dedicated to the state’s charter schools.

The meeting began with testimony from Ember Reichgott Junge, a former democratic state senator and author of the state’s original 1991 charter school law.

Junge provided an overview of the history of chartering and made the point that the original law received bipartisan support and was the middle...

January 11, 2017 · By Krista Kaput

Last summer the 74, an education news nonprofit, published the book, The Founders, by Richard Whitmire. The book chronicles the history of charter management organizations (CMOs) and how they have brought “high-performing” chartered schools to scale throughout the country.

While some may question Whitmire’s narrow definition of high-performing (namely test scores), his book brings up a couple of questions about chartering for Minnesota: Why...

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Special Series

Chartering in Minnesota will be a topic of focus on this blog in 2016. We'll cover the innovation occurring in the sector's schools, new starts and school closures, personnel changes, legislative and rule making activity, the authorizer review process, and more.

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