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April 03, 2017

Who Makes Democratic Change?

We need a model of making school changes based on citizens first, not government first. There are many precedents.

November 23, 2016

Pedagogy of the Empowered

Agency is not the same as activism. Civic agency is the capacity to work across differences on common problems and creation of common things including communities, and, broadly, democracy as a way of life. Schools -- and other educational institutions -- need to develop pedagogies of empowerment that teach the skills and habits of civic agency. This is the foundation for democracy.

November 22, 2016

Schools as Foundations of Democracy

Schools can play a powerful role in creating foundations of democratic thinking among students, writes Deborah Meier.

May 31, 2016

Building Democracy in Schools: The Larger Strategy

Building democracy in schools is best thought of as a strand of a larger strategy to resist the rising authoritarian dangers of our time. Such a strategy calls for cross-partisan politics, organizing that sees the democratic potential in every kind of community, and a commitment to defending democracy and also deepening democracy.

May 03, 2016

Rethinking Elections and Assessments Can Lead to a Democratic Awakening

Focus on the "structures" of democracy brings to mind the role of elections and assessment in a democratic way of life. How do we think about elections if "we the people" are at the center? How do we avoid another "Southern strategy" like Nixon's, which divided working people by race? How do we assess civic agency?

June 18, 2015

Suburban Districts Shouldn't Hire Detectives to Keep Students Out

Some suburban districts hire detectives and even take families to court, to keep out students, often low income and students of color, from nearby urban districts. I think this is awful. I found many status quo defenders (and I don't see you as one of them) who believe this is perfectly ok.

May 14, 2015

Why Public School Choice Should Be Part of School Improvement Efforts

isn't one of the central principles in a democracy, the power of citizens to make choices and decisions, within some limits? Also, don't we know that there's no single design/curriculum/organization for a school in which all students succeed? I think the answer is "yes." So public school choice, including chartering, with schools open to all - no admissions tests - should be part of what we work for.

April 09, 2015

Civil Rights Hero: 'Charters Are an Important Part of the Answer'

Marian Wright Edelman, founder and president of the Children's Defense Fund, explained "I'm deeply grateful" to people involved in the charter school movement. "Charters are an important part of the answer" to what American children, especially low income and children of color need. She also stressed the importance of effective district, as well as chartered public schools.

January 20, 2015

School Choice, Common Core, Too Much Testing, & Other Thoughts

Meier: I'm against all choice methods that give the school the right to choose rather than the students and families.

January 15, 2015

Wise & Woeful School Choice Plans

Nathan: School choice is a powerful tool that needs to be used carefully. I think you and I agree on this.

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