After 11 years of litigation, Judge Thomas Moukawsher issued a seismic decision in the CCJEF school finance lawsuit. In the decision, Moukawsher not only eviscerated Connecticut’s school finance system, he also detailed flaws in the state’s approach to teacher evaluation, teacher compensation, the lack of clear definitions of success in elementary and secondary education, and gave the state 180 days to come up with a solution to all of it.
If there’s one common thread between Robin Lake relating The Boys in the Boat to schools, Neerav Kingsland on a recent charter study, and Robert Pondiscio on Hillbilly Elegy, it’s that culture plays a huge role in education. A new NBER Working Paper provides powerful evidence that it may be even more critical than was previously understood. The authors examine the performance of first and second generation immigrant students in Florida to understand the relationship between the “long-term orientation” of the cultures they come from to their educational outcomes.
Five years ago, Marc Andressen took to the pages of the Wall Street Journal to describe how software was “eating the world”: “More and more major businesses and industries are being run on software and delivered as online services—from movies to agriculture to national defense. Many of the winners are Silicon Valley-style entrepreneurial technology companies that are invading and overturning established industry structures. Over the next 10 years, I expect many more industries to be disrupted by software, with new world-beating Silicon Valley companies doing the disruption in more cases than not.
Michael Lind on the weakness of intellectuals' approach to inequality: The views of intellectuals about social reform tend to be warped by professional and personal biases, as well. In the U.S. the default prescription for inequality and other social problems among professors, pundits, and policy wonks alike tends to be: More education! Successful intellectuals get where they are by being good at taking tests and by going to good schools.
This entire article on creativity is worth a read, but one passage in particular caught my attention: In one experiment a bipedal robot programmed to walk farther and farther actually ended up walking less far than one that simply was programmed to do something novel again and again, Stanley writes. Falling on the ground and flailing your legs doesn’t look much like walking, but it’s a good way to learn to oscillate, and oscillation is the most effective motion for walking.
“The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design” - F.A. Hayek, The Fatal Conceit The ink on the recently released Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is barely dry, but progressive ed reformers are already panning the proposed successor to the defunct No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Conor Williams argues that not only should Obama veto the NCLB rewrite, progressives should fear it.