Education Reform in the U.S. and England | Teachers College Columbia University

Skip to content Skip to main navigation

Education Reform in the U.S. and England

An education policy discussion on November 8 with Geoffrey Whitty, Director of the Institute of Education, London


An education policy discussion with the Director of the Institute of Education, London

Education reform, front-page news here in the United States, is also much debated in England. For many years, the two countries have exchanged education policy reform ideas and efforts. The U.S. looked to England for education policy ideas during the past decade, as many leaders here focused on providing a range of social supports to low-income students. Now, the U.K. is viewing U.S. charter schools as possible models for reform in England.

Geoffrey Whitty, director of the Institute of Education (IOE) at the University of London, will be at Teachers College on Monday, November 8, to deliver a morning lecture and join an evening panel discussion about the current state of education reform in England and the U.S. The two invents will take place in Milbank Chapel, West 120th Street and Broadway. Both are open to the public and sponsored by the Office of the President, Susan H. Fuhrman.

At 11:30 a.m., Whitty will speak on “Policy Tourism and Policy Borrowing: Why Does It Happen and What Good Does It Do?” He will talk about what education reform lessons can be derived from each country and shared. Whitty will also discuss the tendency for education policy ideas to spread rapidly around the world. Drawing on examples like charter schools and high stakes testing, he will consider the educational and political drivers behind international policy exchange and the various ways in which it operates.

The lecture will also explore broader questions about the use of research evidence and the growing role of think tanks and philanthropy in education policy making on both sides of the Atlantic.

At 6 p.m., Whitty will participate in a panel discussion of policy reform in both countries. Joining Whitty on the panel will be the following distinguished experts on education policy:

  • Susan Fuhrman, President of Teachers College, President of the National Academy of Education, and founding Director and Chair of the Management Committee of the Consortium for Policy Research in Education (CPRE);
  • Richard Lee Colvin, director, Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media at Teachers College;
  • Tim Daly, CEO, New Teacher Project (U.S.);
  • Andrew Hargreaves, Thomas More Brennan Chair in Education, Lynch School, Boston College; and
  • Rona Kiley, Founder of the U.K.'s Teach First and former CEO, Academy Sponsors Trust.

Jonathan Daube, president emeritus of Manchester Community College and interim president of Middlesex (Connecticut) Community College, will moderate the panel discussion, which will be interactive and allow for questions.

The events are free, but space is limited. To register, please send an e-mail to

Published Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2010


More Stories