Expertise: 

Michael J. Petrilli

Research Fellow
Biography: 

Mike Petrilli is an award-winning writer and president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, one of the country’s most influential education policy think tanks. He is the author of The Diverse Schools’ Dilemma: A Parent's Guide to Socioeconomically Mixed Public Schools and coeditor of Knowledge at the Core: Don Hirsch, Core Knowledge, and the Future of the Common Core. Petrilli is also a research fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution and executive editor of Education Next. Petrilli has published opinion pieces in the New York Times, Washington Post Bloomberg View, Slate, and Wall Street Journal and has been a guest on NBC Nightly News,, ABC World News Tonight, CNN, and Fox, as well as several National Public Radio programs, including All Things Considered, On Point, and the Diane Rehm Show. Petrilli helped create the US Department of Education’s Office of Innovation and Improvement, the Policy Innovators in Education Network, and Young Education Professionals. He lives with his family in Bethesda, Maryland.

Filter By:

Topic

Type

Recent Commentary

School Buses
Featured Commentary

Pre-K And Charter Schools: Where State Policies Create Barriers To Collaboration

by Michael J. Petrillivia EducationNext
Thursday, July 23, 2015

You don’t have to be a diehard liberal to believe that it’s nuts to wait until kids—especially poor kids—are five years old to start their formal education. We know that many children arrive in kindergarten with major gaps in knowledge, vocabulary, and social skills.

Featured Commentary

The Contours Of A Deal On ESEA Are In Sight

by Michael J. Petrillivia EducationNext
Wednesday, July 22, 2015

As everyone knows, the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education act is closer to the finish line now than at any time in the past eight years. (The law was due for an update in 2007—soon after NASA sent New Horizons to Pluto. That was a long time ago.)

Blogs

Pre-K And Charter Schools: Where State Policies Create Barriers To Collaboration

by Michael J. Petrilli, Amber M. Northernvia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

You don’t have to be a diehard liberal to believe that it’s nuts to wait until kids—especially poor kids—are five years old to start their formal education.

Blogs

Is The Friedrichs Case An “Existential Threat” To The Teachers' Unions?

by Michael J. Petrilli, Dara Zeehandelaarvia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Wednesday, July 8, 2015

As you’ve probably heard by now, the Supreme Court has agreed to hear the Friedrichs vs. California case next year, giving it a chance to strike down union “agency fees” as unconstitutional abridgements of teachers’ First Amendment rights.

Blogs

It’s Finally Here: Our Best Chance To Update ESEA

by Michael J. Petrillivia EducationNext
Wednesday, July 8, 2015

It’s finally here: Our best chance to update the Elementary and Secondary Education Act since its passage shortly after 9/11. A whole generation of students has come and gone, yet our nation’s key education law remains the same.

Students raising their hands
Blogs

To My Friends On The Left And Right: Please Stop Polarizing The ESEA Debate

by Michael J. Petrillivia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Tuesday, July 7, 2015

It’s finally here: Our best chance to update the Elementary and Secondary Education Act since its passage shortly after 9/11.

Education Image
Blogs

ESAs Aren't For Everyone

by Michael J. Petrillivia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Perhaps you’ve been on vacation or caught up in the historic events of recent weeks, but over the past ten days, we at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute hosted our second annual Wonkathon.

Blogs

Redefining The School District In America

by Amber M. Northern, Michael J. Petrillivia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Monday, June 22, 2015

Years into America’s quest to fix its failing schools, everyone agrees that it is extraordinarily hard work to turn them around. But that hasn’t stopped us from trying.

A Degree Of Difficulty

by Michael J. Petrillivia Hoover Digest
Friday, June 19, 2015

Not every job requires a college degree. Employers are shrinking the labor pool unfairly—and unwisely.

Blogs

Want More College Graduates? Improve Our K–12 System

by Michael J. Petrillivia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Regular Flypaper readers know that I’ve been skeptical of the “college for all” movement, but I’m 200 percent behind the “college for more” movement. Among other reasons, that’s because completing college brings a strong economic payoff, particularly for young people growing up in poverty.

Pages