Blog: The Educated Reporter


The Educated Reporter

EWA's blog about education issues and topics from a journalist's perspective. The Educated Reporter is anchored by Emily Richmond with contributions from EWA staff and guests.

EWA’s blog about education issues and topics from a journalist’s perspective. The Educated Reporter is anchored by Emily Richmond with contributions from EWA staff and guests.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

David who?

I spent the last few days at the AERA conference in Denver, meeting with researchers to talk over a project we are thinking of doing at EWA. I had never met most of these people before, so I spent a lot of time walking from lobby to lobby for prearranged meetings, saying “Are you Dick?” or “Are you Bob?”

For my final meeting, with David Plank of PACE, I went to the lobby of the Marriott.

“Are you David?” I said to the only guy there.


“Hi, I’m Linda.”

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Fifty percent, and reporters who don’t comment.

After I blogged on the topic, several reporters wrote me personally about how policy makers in their states decided that student test scores should count toward at least 50 percent of teacher evaluations. In some places consultants insisted that would be a do-or-die threshold for Race to the Top money, though it is not clear that is the the case.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Welcome, Caroline!

I am very excited that Caroline Hendrie is going to be the new executive director of EWA. My condolences to Education Week, where Caroline has worked for 15 years and is reportedly invaluable. Their loss is not just my organization’s gain, but a great gain for education journalists everywhere. Caroline has big shoes to fill—Lisa Walker has, over the last 24 years, admirably built EWA into what it is today—and will begin to try to do so on June 1.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Whence 50 percent?

The thinking seems to be in some circles that counting student test scores for anything less than 50 percent in teacher evaluation won’t get a state Race to the Top money. Does anybody know where the 50 percent figure originated? Is it just because it is powerful to say that at least half a teacher’s value be tied to student performance?

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Detoxing college.

When I went back to Wesleyan for a reunion a few years ago, I came across flyers urging students to stop using cocaine. Not because cocaine is, you know, dangerous and illegal … but because it makes its way to American noses by way of oppressive labor practices in the third world. If you knew much about Wesleyan—it was the model for the movie “PCU” and its genius scene with the marchers shouting, “No more protests! No more protests!”—you wouldn’t be surprised.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

An education reporter who always delivers.

Mostly I like Las Vegas because I like to play cards, immerse myself in tourist kitsch and eat awesome if overpriced food. But you know what else I really like? Emily Richmond’s coverage of the area’s schools. She is a top-notch beat reporter who does a great job putting local stories in national context.

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Do you read your alumni magazine?

The Chronicle of Higher Education pointed me to UMagazinology, a new blog out of Johns Hopkins about alumni magazines. I don’t love the name, but I am intrigued by the topic. Alumni mags do a pretty good job with something traditional media does not: letting readers know what is happening in the classrooms and lives of university professors. And they seem to be once of the last groups on earth that pays freelancers decently.