Happy summer Monday, and welcome to the return of the reading list. The big news last week was, of course, the Vergara verdict and its implications for teacher policy. There was a federal twist to the story, too, when U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan weighed in on the verdict during an interview with CNN, and immediately drew ire from the teachers’ unions.
So what does it all mean? Check out these good reads—and some other edu-stories:
•Over at Teacher Beat, Steve Sawchuk explains the Vergara verdict, and dissects the back-and-forth between the teachers’ unions and Duncan after his CNN comments, in which he said the verdict underlined the need for a “meaningful bar for [teacher] tenure.” Then check out Duncan’s somewhat softer stance in a letter posted to the Education Department’s website on Sunday here.
•Don’t miss this piece at Eduwonk, which does a great job of explaining how folks with very divergent viewpoints are using Vergara to bolster their own arguments, as well as explaining the meaning behind key legal analysis.
•What do Common Core supporters think of the Gates Foundation’s decision to call for a moratorium on the consequences of high stakes tests? The Fordham Institute’s Checker Finn has you covered here. And for you World Cup fans, Fordham also compares U.S. soccer and PISA rankings (spoiler: We’re only a little better at soccer than we are at math and science.)
•How have recent policy shifts reshaped the Ed Tech marketplace? Everything you need to know in this Edweek special report.
•And finally, does the small world of federal education policy have implications for the department, think tanks, and even Hillary Clinton’s rumored 2016 presidential bid? Alexander Russo here