Leadership Blog

John Wilson Unleashed

Prior to leading the National Education Association and the N.C. Association of Educators, John Wilson taught special education for 23 years. He is a past chair of the Partnership for 21st Century Skills, the Learning First Alliance, and the N.C. Covenant for Children. He is a senior fellow at the Pearson Foundation. This blog is no longer being updated.

Teaching Profession Opinion Taking a Break From Blogging
I have decided to suspend my blog indefinitely while I concentrate on helping my home state of North Carolina regain its reputation for great public schools supported by thoughtful public school policy.
John Wilson, January 8, 2014
2 min read
Education Opinion Lessons from Nelson Mandela
Alan Blankstein, founder and president of the HOPE Foundation, shares his thoughts about the legacy and lessons of Nelson Mandela. These lessons include the following: getting to your core, assuring constancy of purpose, creating organizational meaning, facing the facts and your fears, and creating sustainable relationships.
John Wilson, December 10, 2013
3 min read
Accountability Opinion Common Core Needs a Czar
The implementation of the Common Core State Standards has been a mess and has put these standards at risk of survival. CCSSO and NGA need to select a Common Core Czar to oversee the implementation and grant this person the authority to make needed changes as well as recommend changes in laws and regulations.
John Wilson, November 25, 2013
2 min read
Federal Opinion North Carolina Teachers Stage a 'Walk-In'
North Carolina teachers, parents, and supporters of public schools staged "walk-ins" this past week to protests cuts in public education. The architect of these bad policies should pay close attention and start listening instead of lecturing.
John Wilson, November 7, 2013
3 min read
Federal Opinion TFA and Congressional Hypocrisy
The requirement of teachers being "highly qualified" under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act has been rendered meaningless by the latest action of Congress. They inserted a "loophole" for Teach For America that basically makes everyone highly qualified when they are not.
John Wilson, November 4, 2013
3 min read
Teaching Profession Opinion Top Ten Reasons Not to Contract With Teach For America
Local districts who contract with Teach For America have a obligation to do due diligence, negotiate the best deal, and avoid duplication of funding from state and federal governments. Local districts need to examine these ten reasons not to contract with Teach For America.
John Wilson, October 7, 2013
4 min read
Standards Opinion California Is Right; Duncan Is Wrong
Secretary Duncan's threats to withhold funds from California if they do not continue to give tests that are not aligned with common core makes no sense. California has a better plan.
John Wilson, September 16, 2013
2 min read
Teaching Profession Opinion Prime Time Public School Teachers
The new documentary "Teach" premiered during prime time on CBS. It follows four ordinary teachers who do extraordinary work teaching in the public schools.
John Wilson, September 9, 2013
4 min read
Education Funding Opinion America's Most Deceptive Governor
North Carolina may have the most deceptive governor in America. He says one thing, but his actions are much different.The public schools are suffering major setbacks under his leadership.
John Wilson, August 26, 2013
5 min read
Curriculum Opinion Teach America's Youngest a Second Language
Students are learning a second language at an early age because of the Global Schools Network sponsored by VIF International Education and Utah's Dual Language Immersion Program. Research demands that we follow the example of these programs and start with our youngest children.
John Wilson, August 5, 2013
3 min read
Teaching Profession Opinion Getting Arrested for 95,000 Teachers
In an act of civil disobedience, Rodney Ellis, President of the North Carolina Association of Educators was arrested for refusing to leave the legislative building after closing hours. He was protesting the way legislators were passing bills that did harm to teachers and their profession.
John Wilson, July 31, 2013
4 min read
Teaching Profession Opinion The Most Backward Legislature in America
The North Carolina legislature has turned back the clock on the state's reputation for having an innovative and progressive education system. Program after program has been defunded or dismantled.
John Wilson, July 29, 2013
3 min read
Accountability Opinion Get the Feds Out of Teacher Evaluations
The amendment to the Student Success Act, the U.S. House re-authorization bill for ESEA, prohibits the federal government from mandating teacher evaluations. This should be applauded because the federal government has no business telling local employers how to evaluate their employees.
John Wilson, July 22, 2013
2 min read
Teaching Profession Opinion Unions Are Right on Common-Core Standards
Both the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers support Common Core State Standards, and both unions call for a moratorium on high stakes testing until initial implementation of these standards is successful.
John Wilson, July 8, 2013
3 min read