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The Resurgence of the Public Education Nation

In Truthout, Sarah Jaffe devotes a paragraph to TCF vice president for policy and programs Greg Anrig’s research on Cincinnati’s schools.

Greg Anrig of the Century Foundation presented his research on the Cincinnati model for urban schools, where a community school system brings in service providers who give dental care, health care and other wraparound services in the schools, where teachers are actively involved in running all aspects of the school, and where the community is deeply connected to its school.

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What Happens When Teachers Are at the Helm of a School?

October 15, 2014 BY: Halley Potter TOPICS: Education, A Smarter Charter

TCF fellow, Halley Potter has been quoted in a WNYC story about teacher-led schools.

Science teacher Dan Fanelli is spearheading the creation of a new peer evaluation system at Renaissance Charter in Jackson Heights, Queens. A small group of teachers piloted the system last spring, and they are now working to roll it out to the whole school.

The administration is barely involved — and that’s by design.

Fanelli, a seventh-year teacher who also works as a liaison to the administration, said the school runs on the philosophy that the best ideas come from the bottom up, rather than from administrators, policymakers, or politicians. Teachers at Renaissance, Fanelli said, are happy to make the extra effort.

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Tags: teachers, smarter charter series, schools, charter schools

Legacy: Just a By-Product of a Broken System

TCF fellow, Richard D. Kahlenberg has been quoted in a Harvard Political Review article about Harvard's legacy admissions.

Even after years of campaigns for diversity, increased financial aid, and accessibility to all students, Harvard’s campus still does not accurately reflect society today.  A recent article in The Crimson, “What Should Harvard’s Legacy Be” urged the College to “eliminate legacy preference in admissions, to make the admissions process more transparent…and to actively strive toward a legacy of equal access for its many qualified applicants” in order to better combat its homogeneity.  Unfortunately, in a society dominated by institutional benefits for the wealthy, preference for legacy applicants is a tiny detail in the larger picture of Harvard’s massively flawed “meritocracy.”

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Tags: legacy admissions, harvard, financial aid, educational inequality, college admissions

Inside a Teacher-Led Charter School

What happens when teachers run a school? One charter school in Brooklyn is finding out. TCF fellow Halley Potter says that the results so far look promising.

Tags: tfoa, teaching firms of america professional preparatory charter school, teacher voice, smarter charter series, rafiq kalam id-din, damien dunkley, charter schools

The silver lining in falling college enrollment

September 30, 2014 BY: Mark Thoma TOPICS: Education

TCF fellow, Mark Thoma has written an article for CBS News about college enrollment rates.

College enrollment "declined by close to half a million (463,000) between 2012 and 2013, marking the second year in a row that a drop of this magnitude has occurred," according to a report from the Census Bureau. And it's the largest two-year drop since Census began collecting enrollment data in 1966. Notably, the decline was concentrated in two-year colleges.

It is, of course, desirable to have a more educated population, particularly in an era of globalization and technological change that makes it harder for low-skilled workers to find good jobs. But the report also has a silver lining.

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Tags: university, higher education, education, college students, college enrollment, college education

Hold Students Accountable and Support Them

TCF senior fellow, Richard D. Kahlenberg has written a piece for EducationNext about rethinking the high school diploma.

When Congress passed the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) in 2001, the then-distant date of 2014 was the point at which we would reach educational nirvana and 100 percent of American students would be proficient in math and reading. The goal was never met because, as a fundamental matter, individual human variability makes 100 percent proficiency to a meaningful standard an impossibility. But there were other problems as well: NCLB did not itself provide sufficient incentives for students to work hard, as only teachers were held accountable for failure, and the legislation did not end the enduring inequalities of educational opportunity for low-income and minority students that underlie the achievement gap.

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Tags: schools, no child left behind, high school students, high school graduation, education




Most K-12 education reforms are about trying to make "separate but equal" schools for rich and poor work well. The results of these efforts have been discouraging. The Century Foundation looks at ways to integrate public schools by economic status through public school choice. At the higher education level, we examine ways to open the doors of selective and non-selective institutions to students of modest means.

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