Author: Mike Vaughn

Dem Delegates’ Hypocritical Message on Ed Reform: Toe the Union Line…or Keep Your Mouth Shut

“Folks are being pushed to the edges on the right and left on politics,” longtime Denver Public Schools Superintendent Tom Boasberg is quoted in Chalkbeat as saying at a Gates Family Foundation event held on Friday to discuss Denver’s successful model of education reform. “Part of what we’ve been able to do in Denver for some time is to reject the orthodoxy of the…

Taking the bus to Boston for creative transportation solutions

When it comes to bringing new thinking to public education, few places can beat Denver. It’s got a wide array of schools that break the traditional mold (both charter and district-run), a cutting-edge enrollment system that covers every different type of school in one application, and a boundary-busting attempt to increase integration by creating “enrollment zones” that give families priority…

DPS should put families first in tough call on school ratings

Everyone seems to agree that there’s a problem with some of this year’s elementary-school ratings in Denver. The disagreement comes over what to do about it. The Denver Public Schools uses its School Performance Framework (SPF) to rate the annual performance of all of its schools. Since DPS started using the SPF as a color-coded school scorecard in 2008, it’s…

What consequences are we willing to accept in Denver’s school board race?

Elections have consequences, as our Twitter feeds wincingly remind us almost daily. School board elections don’t get as much participation or attention. But they have consequences, too, which my Twitter feed reminded me this month when I saw news about DPS having a record number of top-rated schools on its annual performance scorecards. Combined with the news of Nate Easley stepping down from his…

How About Pro-Teacher Teachers Unions?

By Peter Cunningham On August 1, Celine Coggins, a former classroom teacher who founded an organization called Teach Plus, will publish a new book about the importance of engaging teachers in policy development. It’s called “How to Be Heard.” I have just begun reading it, and I am hopeful it will drive dialogue about the role teachers, and especially teachers…