Cultivating Trust

The Kappan recently included an article about how educators could communicate more effectively with parents of color whose experiences with racism might make them wary of teacher intervention. The article offered some great suggestions, but what really resonated for me was how they framed the core issue of trust between teachers and parents. The authors […]

Using Poetry to Increase Reading Ability

Here’s a neat piece from Reading Partners about how teachers can use poetry with emerging readers to support and further develop their reading skills.  And by poetry here I mean the rollicking, rhyming kind, not the staring out the window at the rain kind. Using poetry in this way has a number of benefits for […]

Pre-K in the Upside Down

What if you sank a lot of money into a Pre-K program to try to close achievement gaps and instead you ended up with the same gaps and increased discipline problems? Does that seem like something out of a dystopian novel?  Unfortunately, it’s not. A recent study from Vanderbilt University examined the effect of a […]

What’s In Your Lunch?

Let talk about something lighter. New York City Schools announced in February that school lunches on Fridays would be vegan.  The stated goal of this new program, which already offered Meatless Mondays and Meatless Fridays, was to offer kids healthier options that they might not otherwise have access to.  The new Mayor, Eric Williams, follows […]

Arming Teachers is Not the Answer

In response to the recent, tragic shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, one proposition keeps bubbling up among legislators who strongly support 2nd amendment rights: We can better stop school shootings if teachers carry guns.  This isn’t going to be an indictment of the 2nd amendment or a treatise on gun control, but I […]

The Critical Importance of Highly Qualified Teachers

The University of North Carolina at Charlotte published a study in 2016 examining how a pair of urban charter school systems populated with economically disadvantaged students of color were able to realize both high achievement and low discipline rates that the surrounding public schools couldn’t even begin to replicate.  High achievement here means 100% graduation […]

One to Watch: New Mexico’s New State Social Studies Standards

New Mexico completely revamped its state social studies standards in an effort to promote better inclusion and to bring topics like racism to the forefront for its students.  Predictably, there was blowback from this decision.  That’s nothing new, but I thought it might be interesting to walk through the  major objections. They are: Some Hispanic […]

Restorative Practices: Emerging Research

Restorative Practices go by many names — Restorative Justice, Restorative Approaches — but whatever the name, the goal of such practices is to reduce exclusionary discipline in schools, particularly for students of color and students with disabilities.  This is a big and messy problem with a lot of moving parts, which I am going to […]

The Efficacy of Equity Audits – Part II

In Part I, we spilled the beans:  no equity audit — or any audit — is empirically effective on its face. Effectiveness lies entirely in the quality of the recommendations and how faithfully they are implemented. Even the best recommendations grounded in hard research are useless if they sit gathering dust in a desk drawer […]

The Efficacy of Equity Audits – Part 1

Is there empirical research demonstrating the efficacy of equity audits? This question was posed to me a couple of months ago and being a bit of a research nerd, I decided to see what was out there in the realms of published studies that might confirm or refute the efficacy of conducting an equity audit. […]