Which Political Party Controls the Department of Education?

I received the following item in my e-mail this morning. For all of the talk by the Far Right about the inadequacies of the Department of Education and the ruinous impact that it has had on public education in this country, when I skim this e-mail, I would be hard-pressed to identify much that has not had its origins in Far-Right think tanks. Note, for instance, the heavy emphasis on standardized testing and even on the concept of “reform.”

In fact, I’d like someone to explain to me how having a Republican in the Oval Office would substantially or significantly change the focus of the Department of Education. I don’t think that it is at all unreasonable to express astonishment that an ostensibly more progressive administration has not been taking a much different approach to improving public education.

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Education Reform Hub Monthly:

February 2014 Issue

U.S. Department of Education

<ed.gov@public.govdelivery.com>

Fri, Feb 28, 2014 at 8:38 AM

Reply-To: ed.gov@public.govdelivery.com

ISSUE NUMBER EIGHT • FEBRUARY 2014

Welcome to the Education Reform Hub Monthly!

This monthly update from the U.S. Department of Education will alert readers to new resources that inform policy and practice across several areas of education reform.

Highlighted Resources

New On PROGRESS Blog

Check out the new additions to the PROGRESS blog, which highlights innovative ideas, promising practices, lessons learned and resources informed by K-12 reforms. Through the voices of students, teachers and administrators, hear how teaching and learning is changing to improve education for all students:

IN THIS ISSUE

This month we highlight new resources from the U.S. Department of Education and from the Comprehensive Center on Great Teachers and Leaders.

New Public Access to Race to the Top Resources

Measures of Learning: State Approaches for Gauging Student Growth in New Evaluation Systems

Performance-Based Compensation: Linking Performance to Teacher Salaries

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Explore toolkits, practical guides, case studies, summary briefs and highlights on key topics and issues that States identify as important to their w ork at the U.S. Department of Education’s Race to the Top.

Delaware and Hawaii Putting Student Data and Teacher Collaboration at the Heart of Instructional Improvement

Massachusetts Districts Adopt Rigorous MassCore Course Requirements for High School Graduates

And read briefs on:

Teachers Leading Transformative Changes in Ohio School Districts

Educators Explain Colorado’s New Performance Evaluation System

Strategies for Increasing College-going and Success

New Public Access to Race to the Top Resources

The Reform Support Network is pleased to announce the launch of the public Communities360° portal. Although portions of the site are still reserved for Race to the Top grantees only, the new portal enables non-grantees to access helpful resources about important work being done by grantees and the Reform Support Network. Visit https://rtt.grads360.org/ to explore resources such as A Quality Control Toolk it for Student Learning Objectives and Turning Around the Lowest Achieving Schools, and for information about communities of practice and contact information for U.S. Department of Education staff who are leading each area of work.

Measures of Learning: State Approaches for Gauging Student Growth in New Evaluation Systems

States are redesigning their educator effectiveness systems to include measures of growth in student achievement. Measures of Learning: State Approaches for Gauging Student Growth in New Evaluation Systems looks at value-added models, non-tested grades and subjects, and student learning objectives. It closes with a discussion of communicating the results of student growth measures, such as monitoring correlations between student outcomes and teacher evaluation ratings and using data dashboards to share evaluation data.

Performance-Based Compensation: Linking Performance to Teacher Salaries

To inform State and district discussions of new directions in teacher compensation, the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders has published Performance-Based Compensation: Linking Performance to Teacher Salaries. This study of performance-based compensation systems features an overview of current policy trends, district-based efforts in the U.S. and a national program in the United Kingdom. Most of these resources come from the Reform Support Network, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, which supports Race to the Top grantees as they implement education reforms, builds their capacity to sustain them, and shares promising practices and lessons learned with other States attempting similar reforms.

This newsletter contains information about and from public and private entities and organizations for the reader’s information. Inclusion does not constitute an endorsement by the U.S. Department of Education of any entity or organization or the products or services offered or views expressed. This publication also contains hyperlinks and URLs created and maintained by outside organizations. They are provided for the reader’s convenience; however, the Department is not responsible for the accuracy of this information.

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