Find your next job fast at the Jan. 28 Virtual Career Fair. Register now.
Opinion Blog


Rick Hess Straight Up

Education policy maven Rick Hess of the American Enterprise Institute think tank offers straight talk on matters of policy, politics, research, and reform.

Education Opinion

Ten Edu-Stories We’ll Be Reading in 2013

By Rick Hess — January 02, 2013 3 min read

Last year, I took a shot at predicting some of the key edu-headlines we’d be reading in 2012. You can check ‘em here to score my accuracy for yourself. Meanwhile, here’s a guess at some of the key edu-headlines we’ll be reading in 2013:

10] “The Common Core fight turns increasingly nasty, as embattled Tea Party conservatives lash out at Republicans who they see as apologizing for Obama administration overreach. A few additional states opt out of the standards, while many more express ‘concerns’ about the implementation, cost, and quality of the assessments, and announce that they’re hitting the ‘pause button’ while waiting for the smoke to clear.”

9] “With $17.83 that U.S. Department of Ed staff scrounged from couches in the building’s staff lounge, Secretary Duncan enthusiastically announces a new grant competition: ‘Race to the Top- Rural Census Tracts of the Midwestern Plains Edition.’”

8] “Republican governors enviously eye Michigan’s right-to-work law and consider proposing similar legislation. Two to three states indicate that they are prepared to move forward, sparking bitter Wisconsin-style standoffs with public employee unions. The fallout deepens the partisan divide between Republican reformers and Democrats for Education Reform, who work hard to make it clear that they side with the unions in these clashes.”

7] “The College Board continues its 2012 hiring binge by snatching up Apple’s education division, Jeb Bush, Melinda Gates, and the animation team at Pixar. College Board president David Coleman allows, ‘We’re done for the moment, but I’ve got my eye on Biden, Bill Clinton, and maybe half the Harvard ed school faculty.’”

6] “Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis and the CTU inspire like-minded union members to push back against new teacher evaluation systems and reduction in force policies. Unions in several districts strike in the fall, citing the CTU’s September 2012 triumph as proof that they can outmaneuver management if they have the courage to stand firm. Lewis becomes an increasingly visible icon, as she flies in to rally the troops during these standoffs.”

5] “The parent trigger garners attention as new states adopt legislation and takeover processes are initiated in a handful of additional schools (though most are immediately bogged down in litigation). The heightened scrutiny fuels difficult questions about how well the concept will actually work in practice, especially amidst continued mixed results for turnaround efforts more generally.”

4] “States continue to default on their Race to the Top promises, but no one pays much attention. This is in part because journalists are busy cataloguing all the ways in which states are busily violating their waiver promises.”

3] “New U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Tammy Baldwin become union celebs when Sen. Warren (D-MA) rejects proposals to move public employees from traditional pensions to defined-contribution benefit plans (e.g. 401k plans), and instead calls for mailing $5,000 checks to teachers and cops. Sen. Baldwin (D-WI) echoes Warren, saying, ‘Hell yeah. Let’s give ‘em 5k instead of 401k’s.’” Their ensuing chest bump is commemorated by will.i.am in the hit, “Benjamins for Public Servants.”

2] “New teacher evaluation systems are tested in court for the first time. The complaints illuminate just how shaky the data systems are and how little thought has been put into ensuring that the systems are defensible given the contours of employment law. Superintendents and school board members get nervous when union attorneys start talking about seven figure class action suits, initiating a whole new set of teacher evaluation challenges.”

1] “A grad student at Wichita State writes a 30-page term paper on her iPhone, prompting 60 Minutes and The New York Times to breathlessly hail the new era of ‘massively miniaturized learning.’”

Now, I’m not much of a prognosticator, so don’t go betting the house on any of this. But I guess we’ll see.

The opinions expressed in Rick Hess Straight Up are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
How to Make Learning More Interactive From Anywhere
Join experts from Samsung and Boxlight to learn how to make learning more interactive from anywhere.
Content provided by Samsung
Teaching Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table With Education Week: How Educators Can Respond to a Post-Truth Era
How do educators break through the noise of disinformation to teach lessons grounded in objective truth? Join to find out.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
The 4 Biggest Challenges of MTSS During Remote Learning: How Districts Are Adapting
Leaders share ways they have overcome the biggest obstacles of adapting a MTSS or RTI framework in a hybrid or remote learning environment.
Content provided by Panorama Education

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Superintendent, Dublin Unified School District
Dublin, California (US)
Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates
Superintendent, Dublin Unified School District
Dublin, California (US)
Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates
ASSISTANT SUPERINTENDENT, HUMAN RESOURCES
Larkspur, California
Tamalpais Union High School District
Special Education Teachers
Lancaster, PA, US
Lancaster Lebanon IU 13

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: January 13, 2021
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Obituary In Memory of Michele Molnar, EdWeek Market Brief Writer and Editor
EdWeek Market Brief Associate Editor Michele Molnar, who was instrumental in launching the publication, succumbed to cancer.
5 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: December 9, 2020
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated Briefly Stated: Stories You May Have Missed
A collection of articles from the previous week that you may have missed.
8 min read