Anya Kamenetz


Using Better Metrics to Build Better Schools

Envision runs a group of three charter high schools in the Bay Area. They champion, as many schools do these days, “deeper learning” and “21st century skills.” Envision enacts this philosophy through a “Know-Do-Reflect” process that uses projects, portfolios and presentations to integrate assessment with learning. They prompt students to turn the lens both inward… Read more »

Almost 70% of Teachers Are Not Engaged. Here’s Why That Matters So Much

Wednesday Gallup released a major report on the State of American Schools. Their data paints a picture of schools performing as a complex ecosystem, with the wellbeing, engagement, and performance of teachers, students, and principals all intertwined. The report combines decades of surveys of 5 million American teachers and principals with the results of the Gallup… Read more »

“Unprecedented” Numbers Opt Out of State Tests-What’s Next?

Today students in New York State begin three days of state-mandated tests in English language arts.  But thousands of families across the state, from Syracuse and Buffalo to the Hudson Valley, Long Island to New York City, will sit out the tests, citing concerns with their relevance and the sense that the curriculum has been… Read more »

Knowledge Pills, Robo-Graders, Brain Implants and Other Dystopian Edtech

It’s been a good week for the weird fringes of ed-tech. On Tuesday,  Nicholas Negroponte took the stage at the 30th anniversary of TED, the starry technology-entertainment-design conference. He’s the mastermind of One Laptop Per Child. It pioneered the idea of low-cost personal devices for students around the world. Negroponte has been criticized as an extreme apologist for… Read more »

$1 Million Global Education “Nobel in Teaching” Announced

Today at the Global Education and Skills Forum, in Dubai, education entrepreneur and philanthropist Sunny Varkey announced a $1 million prize, to be awarded to one outstanding teacher somewhere in the world. Nominations and applications are now open at globalteacherprize.com.  The winner will be announced in November. (disclosure: GEMS  Foundation supported my coverage of this event, but… Read more »