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Stories by Lory Hough

By Lory Hough 01/16/2018 10:09 AM EST
Anjali Adukia
In August of last year, a Bollywood movie called Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, which translates to Toilet: A Love Story, debuted about a woman in India who left her marriage because her husband wouldn’t build a toilet in their house. It sounds farfetched, at least here in the United States, but it’s actually based on a true story. And it highlights a very real, very serious issue in much of the developing world: Many people defecate, by choice or necessity, out in the open. In India alone, it is estimated that 70 percent of households don’t have working toilets. Where does this leave schools? As...
By Lory Hough 01/16/2018 8:16 AM EST
Dan Koretz
You’ve been writing about this issue for decades, but you’ve been holding back. Why the change? As an academic, I try to evaluate the evidence dispassionately, and for many years, I wrote measured descriptions of the accumulating evidence. I presented the first evidence of score inflation — increases in scores much larger than actual improvements in learning — more than 25 years ago, and I and others have presented additional studies of score inflation, bad test preparation, cheating, and other negative effects ever since. But I finally lost patience. Dispassionate explanations turned out to...
By Lory Hough 08/29/2017 12:27 PM EDT
Goodwill Not Enough
You’re a teacher, and you want your classroom to feel safe. You want your school to be a place where kids are happy and ready to learn. But what happens when you don’t know how to do that? When one of your young students is transgender and your training on how to support them is spotty at best? Like Jacob’s teachers, you figure it out. Jacob was about to start kindergarten. A new school with new kids. But some of the kids were from his neighborhood and they might remember that Jacob had once been Mia, the second child of Mimi and Joe Lemay. Although the family was open in the community about...
By Lory Hough 08/29/2017 9:25 AM EDT
Ed. Fall 2017
There are a lot of areas where educators can help transgender students and be supportive of the full spectrum of gender identity. For starters, they can evaluate (and then get rid of) all the ways that schools “gender” students. For example, in elementary school, instead of boy/girl lines, have kids line up by birthday or alphabetically. In high school, have all graduating students wear the same color gown. What are other areas educators need to consider? Terminology: Schools can start by making sure all school personnel, from teachers to coaches to lunch staff, are up-to-date on key...
By Lory Hough 08/28/2017 12:52 PM EDT
Amazing Race
It was the most amazing Amazing Race ever for Scott Flanary, Ed.M.'10. In June, this self-described superfan of the CBS reality adventure show was announced the winner of the 29th season, along with his teammate, Brooke Camhi. Ed. caught up with Flanary, a campus recruiter, to talk strategy, TV fame, and spending the prize money. You took leave from work? I once told my boss that I was a huge reality show fanatic and if I were ever cast on a show, I’d need a leave of absence. She agreed. When the time came, I let her know I was cashing in on my “need to leave.” (I was speaking in code...
By Lory Hough 08/28/2017 11:07 AM EDT
Stephany Cuevas
When California native Stephany Cuevas, Ed.M.'15, a current doctoral student, moved to the East Coast in 2012, she was more than familiar with the term “undocuAlly,” which basically states that someone has made a commitment to be a visible ally to undocumented students and their families. Having lived in California in a predominantly Latino community, and having been a student at University of California, Berkeley, where the topic of immigration predominates, she had heard the term often. Cuevas was surprised, then, when she moved to the East Coast in 2012 to start the Ed.D. Program, how...
By Lory Hough 08/28/2017 9:28 AM EDT
Des Floyd
You've heard of moot court? The activity at law schools where students simulate court proceedings as a way to turn the theoretical into the practical? Des Floyd, Ed.L.D., thought, Why not create something similar for secondary school students but, instead of teaching law skills, present them with common experiences that teach compassion? Last spring, the classroom activity, called Care Court, earned Floyd a finalist slot in the Dean’s Challenge, a contest where Ed School students worked alongside Making Caring Common to develop simple education ideas that promote empathy. Floyd says he used a...
By Lory Hough 08/28/2017 8:44 AM EDT
Vicki Jacobs
This fall, Lecturer Vicki Jacobs, C.A.S.'80, Ed.D.'86, took over as faculty director of the Teacher Education Program (TEP) following Kay Merseth’s retirement from the position. We wondered how Jacobs, who had been serving as faculty director of the Specialized Studies Program since 2015, found her way to teaching and to the field of education. Jacobs sat down with Ed. to talk about her path, which included almost missing her first teaching interview, and dreams of becoming a folk singer. Hometown? I was born in Cleveland, Ohio, but we spent a good number of years in Columbus while I was...
By Lory Hough 08/28/2017 7:12 AM EDT
Illustration by Simone Massoni
The more Joseph McIntyre, Ed.M.'10, Ed.D.'17, read to his baby daughter, the more he realized that most of the books were about boys — to the point that he began to switch the genders of main characters. “It made me wonder how things looked in children’s literature as a whole,” he says. While a student in the doctoral program, McIntyre began analyzing existing research. Previous studies found ratios of male-to-female central characters in picture books of 1.5:1 to 2:1. However, he realized these studies had treated all books in their samples equally. As he continued his doctoral research,...
By Lory Hough 08/28/2017 6:56 AM EDT
Chalk
When we think of school, chalk is one of the first images that come to mind, even though blackboards aren’t used as much these days. And it’s no wonder: The white, powdery sticks, made from gypsum or calcium sulfate, have been used in classrooms across the country since the 1800s, when class sizes grew and teachers found it easier to teach using big slate blackboards at the front of the room rather than having students writing on individual tablets at their desks. By the 1930s, enameled steel greenboards started to replace blackboards, offering less glare and more stability than fragile slate...

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