The Coming Age Of Teacher Choice

My next 3 blogs will be up at Education Week. I'm part of a project called "The Futures Of Education Reform." It was led by two Harvard professors: Jal Mehta (a fellow sleep-deprived new dad) and Bob Schwartz (one of my favorite grad school profs in 1997; he's been a little sleep-deprived too, since becoming Academic Dean). For the past 2 years, about 30 of us would get together occasionally. Here is the list of people from around the country. The goal: break away from the near term debates, and think big.

Intellectually, it was stimulating. Great thinkers, all sorts of competing perspectives. Collectively, it was tough to move forward. Everyone has pet ideas. We mostly imagined a future where our pet ideas would win.

There are 2 things you could check out. There are 7 essays (four are already up, I'm listed as a contributor on one, though Stanford's Susanna Loeb did most of the work).

And there are individually-written blogs. Mine for today:

The Coming Age Of Teacher Choice

Charter schools get this deal: accountability in exchange for flexibility. Shouldn't teachers get the same basic deal? Teacher accountability is coming. I predict that the flexibility will begin to follow right behind.

Right now we are seeing a flurry of activity around merit pay. I am open to the experiments but skeptical of big gains here. Instead, a future I expect to see is where individual teachers who are proven to be successful have five types of choice they don't currently have.

Read the whole thing here.

What do you think? Which of these futures -- if any -- would you want as a teacher?