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Five Best Blogs: Are States Gaming NAEP Scores?

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Why Is Congress redlining our schools? Linda Darling-Hammond:  If passed, the long-awaited Senate bill to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act would build a bigger highway between low-performing schools serving high-need students — the so-called “bottom 5 percent”— and all other schools.

Matt Damon’s mother is wrong Jay Mathews:  Carlsson-Paige and Damon, my favorite actor, are entitled to their opinions. But objecting to our leading teachers union having anything to do with our leading post-college public service program doesn’t help our schools or our children.

Teacher Unions, Mac the Knife, and Dollar Power EdNext:  The recipients, big and small, help to build a broad, diverse coalition that can be called upon by a teacher union when help is needed.

Teachers Matter. Now What? Dana Goldstein:  Just because we know that teachers with high value-added ratings are better for children, it doesn't necessarily follow that we should pay such teachers more for good evaluation scores alone. 

States Excluding Too Many Students from NAEP EdWeek:  "This would ensure the validity of the reported results for the nation and for the participating states. States not meeting the minimum standards should face funding sanctions."

Contract in Hawaii, Conflict in New York EdSector:  The (statewide) district and union have been battling over teacher pay and evaluation provisions for more than a year... A [NY] state law, passed in the spring, required new teacher evaluations for all grades by the end of the next school year.

MORE BLOG POSTS INSIDE -- MAYBE YOURS MADE IT

Why Do Reporters Get it Wrong? Jay P. Greene: Why do people like Tom Toch, who’s not stupid or mean, fail to acknowledge this wealth of evidence showing benefits from voucher programs and just focus on crappy and mistaken summaries from hacks at CEP?

I’m Not a Moderate (Even When It Looks Like It) Cooperative Catalyst:  I’m “that guy” who speaks out against standardized tests, coercive discipline, punishments and rewards. And yet, I’m also “that guy” who pushes back and says, “Sometimes a loss of choice and autonomy are a part of existing in any community.” 

‘You can do anything’ Joanne Jacobs:   Saturday Night Live celebrates the self-esteem of the YouTube generation in this skit.

The trouble with Alexander Russo Schools Matter: Russo's asinine statement "reform opponents need to make sure not to discredit themselves by trying to turn Democratic-funded philanthropies and well-intended nonprofit CMOs into Wall Street or heartless corporations" is as vapid and vacuous as it gets. They are Wall Street and heartless corporations!

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in This Week In Education are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic, Inc.