The Education Evolving Blog

June 24, 2013

Have you ever wanted to see, hear, and feel what happens inside a school where teachers call the shots? Now, thanks to filmmakers Tom and Amy Valens, you can experience A Year at Mission Hill as a 10-chapter series of 5-7 minute videos. They are soon releasing a full-length film, Good Morning Mission Hill: The Freedom to Teach.

Mission Hill K-8, a Boston Public School, is a pilot...

June 17, 2013 · By Ted Kolderie

This Commentary, in the StarTribune June 9 has now been circulated pretty widely around the country. It's drawn a good deal of favorable response. Clearly it has also distressed some people.

Raising uncomfortable questions does upset people. When action seems urgent, when people think they see the problem and think the goal is clear, they do get impatient with those who call the conventional wisdom into question.

But good decisions come only out of full discussion. Especially in a time of rapid...

June 14, 2013 · By Ted Kolderie

In this Commentary in the StarTribune on June 9th I said we are not having a very intelligent discussion about 'closing the achievement gap'.

I ask what seem to me to be relevant -- practical, and important -- questions. Among them:

  • Is is sensible to use a one-dimensional definition of achievement? Is it fair? The late Jack Frymier used to say it is quite unfair for adults not themselves at risk to be imposing failure on young people just getting started in life.
  • So far as proficiency...
May 24, 2013 · By Lars Esdal

"Why does our whole discussion about improving learning go on with no one questioning the old institution of adolescence?"

These were Ted Kolderie's opening words in a TED talk at the New Schools Venture Fund 'summit' May 1 in San Francisco. The session topic was: "It's time to give up on _______ and replace it with ______". In the three-minute video below he explains why we should give up on adolescence and replace it with 'adultness'.

...
May 17, 2013 · By Guest Blogger

Guest post by Julie Sabo, currently a 5th grade teacher in Minneapolis, Minnesota and former state Senator.

Hopes and dreams

A popular way to begin the school year is with an expression of Hopes and Dreams from students and sometimes also from parents. When I first began doing this beginning of the year ritual the Hopes and Dreams expressed were usually broad and blustery, grand in nature. Some students dreamed of worldwide social justice, some for personal strength, fame, great riches, and some for very specific careers.

An interesting change has happened...

May 16, 2013

This post was originally blogged on the Education Week Of, By, For blog.

Young people can be very ambitious and are capable of great achievements. Consider these stories of teens' achievement from a different time, as described by Newt Gingrich in Business Week:

"At age 13, Benjamin Franklin finished school in Boston, was apprenticed to his brother, a printer and publisher, and moved immediately into adulthood. John...

April 30, 2013 · By Dan Loritz

National Public Radio education reporter Claudio Sanchez did a (five minute) story late last week about the 30 year anniversary of President Ronald Reagan’s “Nation at Risk” report. Sanchez interviewed several leading national figures in the education realm, including Education Evolving’s Ted Kolderie. The story provided a sobering assessment of how little has changed in American education in the last three decades. Click here to listen to the full story.

April 26, 2013 · By Ted Kolderie

A story in the Pioneer Press earlier this week, More green lights, less red tape for Innovation Zone schools, explains Minnesota's developing interest in innovation, though it doesn't quite capture how we at Education Evolving believe innovation can most effectively appear in schools.

At Education Evolving we see innovation as both "top-down" and "bottom-up." The "innovation zone" legislation from a year ago encourages administrators...

April 25, 2013 · By Lars Esdal

Next Monday, April 29th, a Minnesota chartered school authorizer, Innovative Quality Schools, will be holding a conference on school redesign. Education Evolving associate Robert Wedl is on the IQS leadership team.

Highlights:

  • Learn about redesigning school for the 21st-century. Includes discussion of: individualized learning, non-traditional ways of measuring achievement, and the "Age 3-to-Grade 3" approach to primary school.
  • Learn about different organizational and...
April 15, 2013 · By Lars Esdal

EE's Curt Johnson appeared on TPT's Redesigning MN: Educating the Workforce series on April 5, 2013. Curt says: "big, rapid and inevitable changes" are coming to higher ed due to the converging forces of relentlessly rising cost, and emerging online technology. Also: students are questioning the value of going to college and "collecting credits" as a ticket to the marketplace.

Johnson challenges college faculty saying, "if you can see the future coming and help design it—rather then deny it and rather then...

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