Tag Archives: success

Michael Bennet Could Do More for Education Reform as DPS Superintendent

The Obama girls have their first day at their new Washington, DC, private school today. And I’m back from vacation, too. I’d be lying to say I’d rather be doing this than playing with Legos or Matchbox cars, but there figures to be a lot of important education policy to discuss in 2009. Today we start back by wondering what the fallout will be from the big appointment of Denver Public Schools superintendent Michael Bennet to fill a vacancy in the United States Senate. From the standpoint of the Senate and federal education reform policy, there’s no doubt this selection represents a net improvement. The optimism of Democrats for Education Reform is justified. Where Bennet stands on many other important issues of the day, however, is not known. (For a wild and interesting piece of trivia, the last sitting U.S. Senator to have served as a school superintendent was none other than the well-aged and controversial late Strom Thurmond.)


Former CCI Charter Shouldn't Take Its Second Chance from DPS for Granted

Like other public schools, charter schools can fail, too. The advantage is it’s generally easier to shut charters down or to reconstitute them in a way that better ensures success. The Denver Post has a story today about giving just such a second chance: An embattled Denver charter school has a new name and a new agreement with Denver Public Schools after a vote by the school board Thursday. The former Challenges, Choices and Images charter school for kindergartners through 12th-graders is now Amandla Academy — named after the Zulu word for strength. The school voluntarily terminated its charter contract with the district, effectively severing the district and the current school leaders from any financial liabilities incurred by CCI. “This was all legal stuff to get the new school to go forward without being encumbered,” said Russell Caldwell, senior vice president at the brokerage firm D.A. Davidson. “The good news is DPS financially and legally acted very prudently to allow the new charter to have conditions in which it will grow and flourish.” The agreement turns the K-12 school of 600 students into a contract school through June 30, and Amandla officials plan to submit an application to become a […]


Delaware Is More Proof that Strong Standards and Parental Choice Work

A couple months ago I told you about the state of Florida’s amazing success in improving early reading test scores. Here were the main things to which former Gov. Jeb Bush attributed the successful gains: Raising standards, measuring progress, grading school performance, providing educational options and targeting resources to reward success and reverse failure are all tools that are transforming schools and raising student achievement…. I also believe we need to better apply free-market principles to the way we deliver education in order to improve the entire system. We should expand educational options so all parents can make the best choices for their children. Teachers and principals should be paid based on performance. Educators that teach subjects with a shortage of teachers, teach in low-performing schools or carry increased responsibilities should be paid more. We should also give merit pay to teachers based on student learning gains and other objective measures…. But blogger Charlie Barone says, hey, wait a minute, let’s take a closer look at Delaware, too. It seems that the First State has shown remarkable improvement, as well. As Matt Ladner points out, some of the same success story themes emerge that have come from Florida: It turns […]