About this site

I was a Governing Board Member of the San Carlos School District, elected November 2007 and again in November 2011. This site was originally used for the purpose of communicating with school district constituents, however now it is used for surfacing ideas and expressing opinions on various subjects in education, politics, business, or otherwise.

Please note that any opinion express here is purely personal and does not necessarily reflect the position or opinion of anyone else or any organization with which I am, or have been, associated.

I will not accept anonymous comments, and all persons who post comments must have a valid e-mail address. Note that I reserve the right to edit, reject, or delete posts based on spelling, grammar, readability, or my judgment of what is appropriate discourse.

 

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The Education Competition Myth (and Why a Voucher System is Doomed to Fail our Kids)

It continues to be a great debate within the education community as to whether competition is a good thing or a bad thing. In fact, our current administration appears to be promoting an agenda of expanding “voucher” programs that are based on this notion that bringing choice and competition to the education world will improve [...]

Why Government is Not (and Should Not be) Like Business

Political chatter seems to always center on how government is inefficient, inept, and wasteful; the oft-cited remedy for such failures is to make government act more like business. After all, isn’t it capitalism — the enterprising spirit, the competition, and the focus on the bottom line — that has made this country great? It is [...]

An Amazing Eight Years

As we are now just a little over two weeks away from the end of my time on the San Carlos School District Board, it seems like a good time to reflect on all of the things that have happened over these last eight years and the many accomplishments of the District. To be clear, [...]

The New Acronym on the Block

This week California released the 2015 CAASPP results — CAASPP is the newest acronym in CA public education. It stands for California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress, and is based on the results of the new, computer-based, Smarter Balanced Assessments (SBAC) that accompanied the recently implemented Common Core Standards. Our students first took the [...]

2014-2015 Year End Wrap-Up

With only about three weeks of school left, it’s time for my annual year end wrap-up. This is definitely a bittersweet note for me to write. By all measures it has been a great year for the San Carlos School District, and of one I am very proud. We have made progress in so many [...]

2013-2014 Year End Wrap-Up

As the school year has just finished, I like to send out my annual wrap-up of the state of the San Carlos School District. It has been an interesting year, characterized by incredible progress on many fronts as well as a number of frustrating periods.

This year felt like everything hit us at once — [...]

Update on Math Pathways

At last night’s board meeting, we received an update on the District’s proposal for handling Common Core math implementation in the San Carlos School District. I wrote a detailed summary of our prior meeting in April where we went through some of the options and understood a bit better the approach behind Common Core. [...]

Adding Up the Common Core

As many of you know, next year our school district (along with every other in the state) will be fully implementing the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in language arts and mathematics. These new standards are designed to be fewer, deeper, and to better promote critical thinking and conceptual understanding. (The San [...]

LCFF, LCAP, CCSS, and SP — How do they fit together?

This is a very unusual time in California public education in that a number of fundamental components of how we operate are changing simultaneously. Some of these significant changes include:

The adoption of Common Core Standards (CCSS) – a state-led initiative to establish consistent and clear education standards for English-Language Arts and Mathematics that would [...]

Rethinking the Starting Age of Public School

The following op-ed piece was published on EdSource today. Also, this is a preview of a position paper being published by the San Mateo County School Boards Association — a preview of that paper (and the earlier one on LCFF) can be downloaded here.

The current structure of U.S. public schools — including [...]