Frederick M. Hess
Frederick M. Hess
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

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What the 2016 Race May Hold for Education

October 13, 2015 at 9:00 am

After six months of blather, we're finally approaching the turn where the 2016 Presidential contest gets real. How unreal has everything been thus far? At this point in 2008, Barack Obama was a curiosity getting smoked by the Clinton juggernaut. So, even in a normal year, there'd be lots of uncertainty ahead. . . and this year has been anything but normal. I'll leave the general political prognostication to those who get paid to do that sort of thing for a living, but as Iowa and New Hampshire come into view, here are a few thoughts about what developments may mean for education.

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The Obama Education Legacy

October 8, 2015 at 9:00 am

Last week, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced his resignation. With Congress controlled by the Republicans and the administration having run out of stimulus cash, played its "waiver" card, and been rebuffed on plans to use its college scorecard to impose NCLB for higher ed, things are winding down. Things could still happen— most significantly ESEA reauthorization— but we're getting close to the time when Department of Ed staff will be on caretaker status. That makes this a propitious moment, especially as the campaign for 2016 begins in earnest, to examine the Obama education legacy.

The most recent issue of the quarterly National Affairs contains an extended essay offering my own take. It begins,

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A Few Reflections Upon Secretary Duncan's Departure

October 5, 2015 at 9:00 am

Rather than once again address Arne Duncan's tenure as Secretary of Education, today I'm inclined to offer a couple of more personal musings. After all, while I've often been disappointed by Duncan's Department (and been a thorn in its side), there have been more rewarding moments. I remember Duncan coming to AEI in 2010, a couple weeks after the elections, to give a terrific speech on the "new normal" in education and the need for schools to find ways to do more with less. I recall when Peter Cunningham, Duncan's whip-smart comms chief, was kind enough to invite Andrew Kelly and me over to the Department of Education for a town hall to discuss the lessons about the federal role in education that we took from our 2012 bookCarrots, Sticks, and the Bully Pulpit. I recall fiercely defending Duncan against the inane, childish protest he faced a couple years ago at the American Educational Research Association annual conference . . . and he and I having a good go on the Common Core a couple years ago at the University of Chicago, and a fruitful exchange after.

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Straight-Up Conversation: ClassDojo's Sam Chaudhary

September 30, 2015 at 9:00 am

Three years ago, I spoke with Sam Chaudhary, co-founder of the then-new ed tech outfit ClassDojo. I was impressed with ClassDojo's focus on helping teachers solve practical problems relating to classroom culture and climate. Today, Class Dojo reports that teachers in more than half the nation's schools are using its offerings to assist with classroom management, social and emotional development, and parent engagement. Worldwide, ClassDojo is used by over three million teachers. A former high school teacher, Sam Chaudhary is CEO of ClassDojo and was recently named one of LinkedIn's top education influencers under 35. With the start of a new school year, I thought it'd be a good time to check in with Chaudhary, hear more about where ClassDojo is at, and what it means for the role of education technology.

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Actually, Boehner's Resignation Doesn't Change the Odds on ESEA

September 28, 2015 at 9:00 am

On Friday, House Speaker John Boehner announced that he'll be stepping down at the end of October. This decision concluded five long years of caucus clashes between Boehner and the House's Tea Party wing and, in edu-world, occasioned much speculation about what this means for ESEA. After all, for the first time since 2001, the House and Senate have both passed reauthorization legislation which they're now working to reconcile. The conventional wisdom was that Boehner's announcement makes the odds of ESEA reauthorization much longer.

I see things a little differently.

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Books by Frederick M. Hess

Cover of Cage-Busting Leadership Cover of The Same Thing Over and Over Cover of No Child Left Behind Cover of Tough Love for Schools Cover of Common Sense School Reform Cover of Revolution at the Margins Cover of Bringing the Social Sciences Alive Cover of Spinning Wheels


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