Managing Schools to Improve Teacher Performance

Friday, May 10, 2013
8:00 a.m.–2:30 p.m.

The conversation about how to improve American education has often taken on an increasingly confrontational tone. The caricature often presented in the press depicts data-obsessed reformers who believe in getting rid of low-performing teachers, standing off against unions who do not trust any teaching metric. One promising area that can potentially serve as a middle ground is developing classroom-tested, replicable, and scalable approaches to teacher training.

We focused on the challenges facing educators working in urban settings, guided by presentations from leading thinkers. Discussion topics ranged from in-the-classroom techniques for using feedback to increase student motivation, to larger design questions around how to convince the many constituencies involved to put change into practice, with the aspiration of finding and implementing ways of improving schools.

In this half-day meeting, we brought together leaders from a range of education-focused organizations to exchange ideas on how to best help teachers to improve student performance. View photos from the event.
Executive directors who would like to attend future Social Enterprise Leadership Forums can contact [email protected].


8:00–8:25 a.m.

Breakfast and Registration

8:25–8:30 a.m.

Welcome and Introductions

  • Ray Fisman
    Lambert Family Professor of Social Enterprise
    Co-director, Social Enterprise Program
    Columbia Business School
8:30–9:30 a.m.

Keynote Address

9:30–10:30 a.m.

Can We Identify Effective Teachers?

  • Thomas Kane (view presentation or watch the recording)
    Professor of Education and Economics,
    Harvard Graduate School of Education;
    Faculty Director,
    Harvard’s Center for Education Policy Research
10:30–11:00 a.m.

Coffee Break

11:00 a.m. –12:00 p.m.

Designing Student Feedback

  • Valerie Purdie-Vaughns (view presentation or watch the recording)
    Assistant Professor of Social Psychology,
    Columbia University;
    Intergroup Relations and Diversity Laboratory (IRDL)
12:00–1:00 p.m.

Training the Next Generation of Teachers

1:15–1:30 p.m.

Closing Remarks

1:30–2:30 p.m. 

Working Lunch


Research Report

Download the research report here.