Home » Blog

DFER's Blog

But what about failing schools?

Source: Associated Press

By Nicole Brisbane, DFER-NY State Director

It’s the fourth week of school for NYC Public Schools, and we’ve long awaited Chancellor Fariña’s plan for turning around the schools with the largest number of students who are not meeting proficiency on state exams - schools we know serve significant populations of poor and minority students. Finally, the new plan was revealed yesterday at P.S. 503/506 in Brooklyn.

Fariña’s plan started strong with a revamp of the letter grade system previously assigned to schools. The old letter grade system was initially intended to be a tool for internal use, showing schools’ growth on test scores. But in reality, the system provided very little useful information for parents.


USDOE Guidance on Equity A Big Step. But Some Provisions Raise Concerns About Political Will

by Charles Barone, Policy Director

Democrats for Education Reform applauds the U.S. Department of Education for the guidance it issued today to help ensure equal educational opportunity for all students. Resource equity is a key area where we, along with many others, have asked the Obama Administration to place greater emphasis. We're thrilled to see today's action.


Economically Disadvantaged Students in NY's Public Charter Schools Surpass Average Math Proficiency Rates for All Students Statewide

(Download the PDF for a closer view here.)

Created by DFER's Communications Coordinator and Web Editor, Stephanie Doctrow

From DFER's Blog Series: Infographic Tuesdays

For updates, add us to your RSS Feed, follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook.


Bill Clinton's Remarks on Charters And Accountability - Some Good Points That Don't Quite Add Up

By Charles Barone, Policy Director

Earlier this week, former President Bill Clinton made waves when he criticized charter schools for "not living up to their promise." We wholeheartedly agree. In too many states, the lax state oversight of public charter schools cited by Clinton - one of the nation's earliest advocates for charter schools from either party and the primary force behind the 1994 enactment of the federal charter school program - has resulted in a public charter sector that performs significantly below its traditional public school counterpart.

The situation Clinton highlighted is not just bad for kids, it's bad for the charter movement. Far too frequently, charter school advocates have resisted efforts to implement robust accountability for public charters or to improve or restructure low-performing schools.


Extending Accountability to Teacher Preparation

By Michael Dannenberg, Director of Strategic Initiatives for Policy, Education Reform Now

Buzz is, and it’s a good bet, that the Obama administration is about to release a draft teacher preparation regulation. Why, and what will the draft regulation say?

Separately and together, there are three major pending Obama initiatives that advance “quality assurance” and “accountability for higher ed” as postsecondary education policy themes that could prove a significant part of this administration’s higher education legacy.

First, there’s the President’s proposed college ratings system.


Previous Page | Next Page