Have We Become Too Cynical About Public Education Reform? Hello all, I'm wondering whether we've become too cynical about public school education reform. On Tuesday I had an opportunity to interview Secretary Arne Duncan and teacher's union president Randi Weingarten. We talked about an event occurring next week in Denver in which school board leaders, school superintendents and teacher union leaders will converge at a "collaboration" conference. The aim is to replace fighting with working together to help students succeed. It appears to be a pretty unprecedented gathering of traditional adversaries and some are even calling it historic. Secretary Ducan said that he is very excited about this event and believes it can be a turning point for public education. Drawing on discussions I've had here with some of you. I posed a series of very tough questions to them both. Specifically, I pointed out that many teachers, administrators and parents have been through decades of failed education reforms and that many feel a deep sense of cynicism about any and all reform efforts including this one. Secretary Duncan pointed to some pretty impressive signs that things are different now, including the unprecedented 40 plus states that have signed on to the notion of common core standards. Randi Weingarten was empathetic as she acknowledged the cynicism, but pointed to the unprecedented teams of traditional education rivals who are coming together next week. She closed suggesting that were are now seeing real meaningful changes in multiple places across the country. I must admit I left the discussion lifted and believing that we really are at a turning point in public education reform... really! But as I went back and read some of my exchanges here with MARK94544 , ALICEacc, bandnerdtx, Swansong1 and JonLee and others I thought.....hmmmmm. Is it possible that we might FINALLY be on the verge of real and significant positive reform, with historic events taking place all around us, but because of our past experiences, many of us have become too cynical to see what's happening? Unprecedented spending on education over the last two years President's state of the union address made education reform the unequivocal center piece 40 plus states sign on to unprecedented agreement to established common core standards Hundreds of teams of education rivals agree to collaborate and put children first. Is all of this just window dressing or are we witnessing something really big going on in our field, on our watch?