Expertise: 

Michael J. Petrilli

Visiting 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 visiting 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.

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Interviews

Michael Petrilli On The Education Gadfly Show: The Effects Of Early College Programs

interview with Michael J. Petrillivia The Education Gadfly Show Podcast
Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Michael Petrilli discusses the long-term impact of early college high school programs.

Analysis and Commentary

PISA 2018: Leaning Into The Economic Headwinds

by Michael J. Petrillivia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Another week, another round of test scores, this time the international variety. The latest results from the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) are out, and they largely track the findings from the 2019 National Assessment of Educational Progress. Meaning: American scores are mostly flat, with some widening of the gaps between our high and low performers in reading and math because the higher achieving students are making progress while their peers are standing still. 

Interviews

Michael Petrilli On The Education Gadfly Show: The Obstacles Of Evidence-Based Practices

interview with Michael J. Petrillivia The Education Gadfly Show Podcast
Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Michael Petrilli talks about the challenge of spreading evidence-based practices in schools.

Analysis and Commentary

Montgomery County, Maryland, Talks A Good Game On “Equity.” Now It Has A Chance To Walk It, Too.

by Michael J. Petrillivia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Tuesday, November 26, 2019

There’s been a lot of talk about racial equity in Montgomery County as of late. It is motivated in part by a disturbing “racial equity profile” released in June, which shows dramatic disparities between white and Asian residents and their African American and Latino counterparts in employment, health, education and many other domains.

Analysis and Commentary

2019 NAEP Results Show There’s Something Wrong Going On. 3 Theories About What Might Be Happening In Our Schools, And Beyond

by Michael J. Petrillivia The 74 Million
Thursday, November 21, 2019

The New York Times headline pointed to “decline.” Politico used the word “slump.” And the Associated Press went with “lags.” Any way you say it, the latest scores from the Nation’s Report Card were bad, with trends getting worse over time. In particular, America’s lowest-performing students, who also tend to be our lowest-income children, are faring particularly poorly, especially in eighth grade, and especially in reading, but pretty much all across the board. 

Analysis and Commentary

Montgomery County Talks A Good Game On “Equity.” Now It Has A Chance To Walk It, Too.

by Michael J. Petrillivia The Washington Post
Wednesday, November 20, 2019

There’s been a lot of talk about racial equity in Montgomery County as of late. It is motivated in part by a disturbing “racial equity profile” released in June, which shows dramatic disparities between white and Asian residents and their African American and Latino counterparts in employment, health, education and many other domains.

Interviews

Michael Petrilli On The Education Gadfly Show: Are Screens To Blame For NAEP's Bottom Falling Out?

interview with Michael J. Petrillivia Thomas B. Fordham Institute
Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Hoover Institution fellow Michael Petrilli talks about the possible link between students’ screen time and reading scores.

Analysis and Commentary

Put “Whole Language” On Trial

by Michael J. Petrillivia Education Next
Wednesday, November 20, 2019

The case against reading instruction that leads to illiteracy.

Analysis and Commentary

The States That Are Swimming Against The NAEP Tides

by Michael J. Petrillivia Flypaper (Fordham Education Blog)
Wednesday, November 13, 2019

The bad news from the latest Nation’s Report Card has us analysts wearing out our thesauruses. Gloomy, dismal, a bloodbath…no negative seems overwrought for what we saw the other week, especially for our lowest-performing students. For example, since 2013, the start of our “Achievement Recession,” eighth grade reading scores for students at the 10th percentile have dropped by ten points. Ten points! That’s the equivalent of an entire grade level. The bottom seems to be falling out.

Analysis and Commentary

NAEP 2019: The Terrible Impact Of The Great Recession

by Michael J. Petrillivia Thomas Fordham Institute
Friday, November 8, 2019

In previous posts and in comments to the media, I’ve been making the case that the lingering effects of the Great Recession might partially explain the disappointing student achievement trends we’ve seen as of late, both on the Nation’s Report Card and on state assessments.

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