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Last modified: Monday, April 2, 2012

CEEP Director Plucker is guest writer for Education Week 'Straight Up' blog this week

April 2, 2012

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- All this week, Jonathan Plucker, professor of educational psychology and cognitive science at the Indiana University School of Education and director of the Center for Evaluation and Education Policy, will be filling in for one of education's most influential thinkers. Plucker will post blogs for the Rick Hess "Straight Up" blog on the website for Education Week starting today, April 2.

Jonathan Plucker

Jonathan Plucker

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Hess is resident scholar and director of education policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute. On the widely read Education Week blog, Hess gives his take on education policy, politics of education, education research and education reform.

"Rick Hess is one of our country's top thinkers on education reform, and his blog is a 'must-read' for his thoughtful, provocative comments on the major education issues of the day," Plucker said. "I was honored to get the invitation to pinch-hit for him this week, and I hope people find my comments to be similarly thought-provoking."

Plucker's own research focuses on creativity and intelligence, school reform and talent development. He said his blog postings will cover a range of topics, including matters of education stretching from Indiana to around the world. The subjects will include "excellence gaps," touching upon Plucker's research that has uncovered large and growing achievement gaps among high-ability students from different economic, racial and linguistic backgrounds in the U.S.

A major CEEP report in 2010, "Mind the (Other) Gap!: The Growing Excellence Gap in K-12 Education," comprehensively examined student achievement test results from every state. An updated state-by-state report went online earlier this year.

Plucker said he'll also write about "Searching for Hope: Life at a Failing School in the Heart of America"; the new book by Indianapolis Star columnist Matthew Tully, published by IU Press, documents a year at the troubled Manual High School in Indianapolis. Other subjects will include international education achievement comparisons and the waivers received by Indiana and other states to meet the demands of the federal education department's "No Child Left Behind" benchmarks.

In February, the American Association for the Advancement of Science awarded the distinction of fellow to Plucker, one of a record 10 Indiana University faculty members named AAAS Fellows this year. Founded in 1848, AAAS is the world's largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science. The AAAS noted that Plucker's selection was "for distinguished contributions to the science of creativity and the creation of research-supported education policy."

Plucker, who joined the School of Education faculty in 1997, has headed CEEP since 2003. A frequently cited source on education policy issues, Plucker has appeared on CNN and has recently been quoted in Newsweek and numerous other media outlets.

CEEP, one of the country's leading nonpartisan education policy and program evaluation centers, promotes and supports rigorous evaluation and research primarily, but not exclusively, for educational, human services and nonprofit organizations. Center projects address state, national and international education questions. CEEP is part of the IU School of Education.