The Education Evolving Blog

September 4, 2012 · By Lars Esdal

Education Evolving’s Ted Kolderie was featured last weekend in a series of National Public Radio (NPR) stories about the direction the charter schools movement has taken since the first chartered school opened in 1992. On September 7, Saint Paul’s City Academy--the first chartered school in the nation--turns 20.

In the radio report Kolderie discusses how, over the last 20 years, the conversation around chartering has shifted. In recent years chartering has been seen less as a process of innovation and more as a particular kind of school, operated by a particular kind of...

August 29, 2012 · By Lars Esdal

I want to share with you an important piece of research on chartered schools conducted by longtime Minnesota superintendent Dr. Charles Kyte. The research was conducted at the request of The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

Realizing Deeper Learning: The Economics and Achievements of the Innovative Chartered School Model”...

August 24, 2012 · By Lars Esdal

Ted Kolderie, a senior associate with Education Evolving, was one of 43 national education experts invited to examine Finland’s public education system and bring lessons back to the United States. Ted’s in Finland now; he left for his weeklong trip last Saturday, August 18.

Leading the delegation are Linda Darling-Hammond, a Stanford University professor, and Joanne Weiss, chief of staff for the U.S. Secretary of Education. Ted and Mary Cathryn Ricker, president of the Saint Paul...

August 20, 2012 · By Ted Kolderie

You might ask: Why another blog about education? What do you have to say that others don't already say?

Fair enough.


Through this blog, Education Evolving will ask and answer the questions of “How?” – which others generally aren’t doing. Too much of the discussion elsewhere deplores the problems and reaffirms the goals. But the important question is: “How do we get it done?”

For more than 20 years, Education Evolving has concentrated on broadening and deepening the...

December 12, 2011

Many teachers express frustration about how often they are told what, how, and when to teach -- basically, asked to follow a script.

Many believe the job of teaching has suffered since the 1990s, as the standards and accountability movement has driven decision making upwards and away from teachers, to the district, state, and federal level.

The Minneapolis Federation of Teachers has taken a bold action to help restore professional autonomy to teachers, in exchange for being held accountable for results. This month the MFT, supported by a grant from the American Federation of...

July 8, 2011

This post was originally posted by Ted Kolderie on the weekly National Journal Education Experts Blog. The topic for the week was chosen in response to the second major ESEA reform bill, related to chartered schools, being approved by the US House Education and the Workforce Committee.

The National Journal question was: To what extent can charter schools change the...

July 5, 2011

Ted Kolderie, a founder of Education|Evolving, is the recipient of this year's James Bryant Conant Award from the Education Commission of the States (ECS) for his work to develop the chartered schools sector in public education.

In responding July 7th at the ECS annual National Forum on Education Policy in Denver he will set out the case for using the charter sector now to innovate with approaches to learning, forms of school organization and a broader definition of achievement.

More on the award here, from the...

June 7, 2011

It's worth taking a close look at our current approach to school management.

Our deal with teachers has been that we don’t give you professional authority, and in exchange you don’t give us accountability. Why not cut a new deal: in exchange for real accountability we’ll give you real authority?

We believe that we'll see more innovation in schools where decisions are made by those who know the students' contexts and needs the best -- the teachers. We've been following a growing number of schools nationwide where teachers are able to control what matters for...

April 1, 2011

Apologies that our posts have been quite sparse over the past few weeks.

The legislative season is busy for us small policy organizations, but we hope to be posting more regularly again in June.

Stay tuned!

March 31, 2011

In the effort to improve public education today, there is a tendency to look for “what works,” and then replicate it. These efforts should be applauded.

But, it’s important that at the same time we continue to try new things. There is likely not one concept of school that works for all students, all teachers, and in all contexts. We must continue to innovate.

Innovative Quality Schools (IQS) is a new approved authorizer of chartered schools in Minnesota. They will focus on authorizing schools that innovate with respect to...