Teaching Profession Letter to the Editor

ExcelinEd: Critics Make False ‘Leaps of Logic’

May 07, 2013 1 min read

To the Editor:

The article “Education Industry Players Exert Public-Policy Influence” (Industry & Innovation Special Report, April 24, 2013) references allegations made against the Foundation for Excellence in Education (ExcelinEd) by the group In the Public Interest.

What the article doesn’t tell you is that the allegations made by In the Public Interest were based on email exchanges that the group distorted and misinterpreted to advance its own political agenda.

Donald Cohen, the chairman of In the Public Interest, has shown his bias in his own writings. Last year, he wrote in a Huffington Post blog that reform is a “right wing attack” on teachers’ unions, even though the movement has become bipartisan and includes among its leaders President Barack Obama.

The example cited in the Education Week article is a perfect illustration of the leaps of logic and falsehoods promulgated by this group. The truth is that when Florida expanded its high school grading formula to include graduation rates and college readiness, we participated in discussions regarding what percent of the grade should be based on Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test results. The school grading formula has nothing to do with standardized-test companies, nor does it affect the number of assessments.

At ExcelinEd, we openly offer our expertise to legislators and policymakers interested in improving their education systems. We do not advocate for a specific organization or company. Our recommendations are focused on policies that result in positive student outcomes.

We believe families are best served when they can choose the best schools for their children, and we believe in digital learning models that improve student performance.

Rather than spending so much time and effort trying to block competition, we believe school districts and teachers’ unions should work to reform public school bureaucracies and outdated union policies so they can win the competition. It is our hope that their representatives will one day choose to put aside the rhetoric and accusations and engage in a substantive discussion on education reform.

Patricia Levesque

Chief Executive Officer

Foundation for Excellence in Education

Tallahassee, Fla.

A version of this article appeared in the May 08, 2013 edition of Education Week as ExcelinEd: Critics Make False ‘Leaps of Logic’


Jobs The EdWeek Top School Jobs Virtual Career Fair
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
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.
Mathematics Webinar
Engaging Young Students to Accelerate Math Learning
Join learning scientists and inspiring district leaders, for a timely panel discussion addressing a school district’s approach to doubling and tripling Math gains during Covid. What started as a goal to address learning gaps in
Content provided by Age of Learning & Digital Promise, Harlingen CISD
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.
Curriculum Webinar
How to Power Your Curriculum With Digital Books
Register for this can’t miss session looking at best practices for utilizing digital books to support their curriculum.
Content provided by OverDrive

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Teaching Profession New York City Will End Controversial Absent Teacher Pool
Education department officials there announced that they will place hundreds of sidelined teachers in permanent teaching positions starting next year.
Michael Elsen-Rooney, New York Daily News
4 min read
Image of a teacher in a classroom full of kids.
Teaching Profession Teachers Walk Off the Job at Chicago’s Urban Prep
With just two weeks left to the school year, teachers went on strike over what they say is a lack of support for special education students.
Karen Ann Cullotta, Chicago Tribune
3 min read
Images shows hand drawn group of protestors.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty
Teaching Profession Opinion Compassion Fatigue Is Overwhelming Educators During the Pandemic
Educators need acknowledgment and healing while dealing with their own and others' grief. Here’s what administrators can do to help.
Shayla Ewing
5 min read
Illustration of empty shirt and cloud
iStock/Getty Images Plus
Teaching Profession Is It Time to Relax Teacher Dress Codes?
After teaching at home in comfortable clothes, some school and district leaders support casual attire for teachers returning to classrooms.
4 min read
Illustration of clothes on hangers