The best piece of journalism I came across this week by far was Darren Sands’ look at What Happened To Black Lives Matter? Published on BuzzFeed, Sands’ piece takes readers inside a social movement most folks might think is monolithic and tells a complicated but still very comprehensible tale. The story also helps explain a bit how the Movement for Black Lives umbrella organization ended up coming out with education positions that not everyone thought represented the views of its members.

The most useful piece of journalism this week is probably The 74’s ESSA map, which gives folks an updated look at where states are on implementing the new law. Also check out these two pieces from little-known SI&A Cabinet Report, one of which describes DeVos’s apparent break with Congressional leaders over the law and the other, which tells the story of California’s ESSA waiting game. I’m also told that the St. Louis Post-Dispatch is covering the ESSA implementation story more thoroughly than most. And the new state-level outlets – ProPublica IL, Politico NY, etc. — should be in good position to cover these developments.

Kudos to Politico NY’s Eliza Shapiro for her apparent scoop on the New York charter/mayoral control negotiations. Shapiro also penned an interesting profile of Eva Moskowitz’s ever-evolving political ambitions.

The latest installment of the Teacher Project’s stories of teachers and students (image above) is a bit of a heartbreaker when you find out what’s happened to both of them since they were in the same classroom.

Let’s ’s not forget Dana Goldstein’s New York Times piece about efforts to integrate Dallas, which “like many cities… replaced one form of segregation with another.”


📰 HuffPost: The 395 Kids Philando Castile Left Behind
📰 Miami Herald: Hack attacks highlight vulnerability of Florida schools to cyber crooks
📰 Bloomberg: Billionaires Try Opposite Paths for Online Education in India
📰 US News: Where Poor Students Are Top of the Class
📰 BuzzFeed: Betsy DeVos Picked A Student Loan CEO To Run The Student Loan System [Want more? Check out Molly’s On Point / WBUR interview here.]
📰 Christian Science Monitor: Why a good racial mix may also create a sense of comfort at school. [See also KPCC LA]
📰 NYT: ‘Dreamers’ to Stay in U.S. for Now, but Long-Term Fate Is Unclear [See also Out of High School, Into Real Life]
📰 NPR: A School That Provides The One Constant In Homeless Children’s Lives


The Grade’s big contribution to the universe this week was a roundup of education-related programming being held this week at #IRE17, the annual conference of investigative reporters and those who would like to be. As you will see, there are lots of speakers and moderators whose Twitter handles you likely know by heart.

One big talk that took place Thursday morning was from Nikole Hannah-Jones, who I hadn’t known is an Emerson New America Fellow. The Oregonian’s Melissa Lewis is also sharing her notes on some of the sessions, which is super-helpful of her. Thanks to @caitlin_oh for the images.

Thanks so much everyone who read and commented on contributor Richard Lee Colvin’s column from last week, asking some hard questions about the New York Times feature on the “Googlification” of American schools, to the indefatigable Diane Ravitch for picking up this recent column from The Grade from contributor Amy Shuffelton about PBS’s decision to air School, Inc, and to the Annenberg Institute for praising contributor Tara Garcia Mathewson’s column about finding diverse voices to tell education stories.

Sharing this with our staff — a must read!” That’s what we like to hear 🙂


This year’s Murrow Awards, given by the Radio Television Digital News Association, included a bunch of education journalism, both national and regional. The national awards for this year include KNX-AM for its coverage of the UCLA Shooting & Lockdown, WNYC for Gentrification: Feeling Like an Outsider in Your Own Neighborhood, State Impact IN for English Language Learner Services Navigate Indiana’s New School Funding Formula (esp. Claire McInerny), and the whole team at NPR ED for Excellence in Innovation.

Speaking of NPR, lead blogger Anya Kamenetz’s Twitter bio reveals that her next book The Art of Screen Time is available for pre-order already. According to the Amazon promo copy, “[Kamenetz] hones a simple message, a riff on Michael Pollan’s well-known “food rules”: “Enjoy Screens. Not too much. Mostly with others.”

Big congrats to Emmanuel Felton for being among the 2017 Ida B. Wells Fellows. Congratulations also to Kathleen Kingsbury, whom some may remember did some writing about education way back when. She was just named editorial page deputy editor at the NYT.


NPR: A teacher’s decision to be ‘visibly queer’ in photo with President Trump
HuffPost: Jimmy Kimmel lets teen finish his faculty-censored grad speech
NYT: DeVos named Trump’s “worst” appointee, according to readers.
Snopes: No, Barron Trump Didn’t Win a National Academic Award

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