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November 30, 2011

Poverty Matters

"It's no cop-out to acknowledge the effects of socioeconomic disparities on student learning. Rather, it's a vital step to closing the achievement gap." Richard Rothstein In our present economic climate, where it seems that politicians are completely disconnected from the people who voted for them...

November 25, 2011

Professional Development with the Experts Through Twitter

Great teachers know that they don't have to know it all. They just have to know their resources. Many times when we're struggling with the issue of meeting the needs of our students or those of our teachers, we search for great websites. Websites from experts can help inspire us to make the necess...

November 24, 2011

Catcher's Mitt

Later on, I found my niche. It wasn't baseball; it was school, and running and art and music. Dad and Mom had taught me that life is special. It doesn't always work out the way you want--sometimes it works out better. A few years ago I wrote a story entitled Catcher's Mitt for Grief Digest. Unfort...

November 15, 2011

Four Day Weeks OR Extended Days: Where's the Equity?

Recently there was a story in Education Week entitled Push is On to Add Time to School Day, Year (Fleming). Some schools are adding time to their school day and school year. If done correctly, this will allow teachers the time to focus on great instructional tools like Project-Based Learning (PBL) ...

November 04, 2011

High Stakes Testing is not a 21st Century Skill

Recently, New York State test scores were released to the public and showed that students scored lower in the areas of ELA and math than in previous years. The results were quickly announced by the media. Even the national news chimed in to report the devastating results of the high stakes tests. ...

November 03, 2011

Robert Doesn't Fit In

Most days, Robert walks into his elementary school with his head down. It's not that he doesn't like his teacher or school, it's just that is how he likes to walk. Students quickly walk past him on the sidewalk and the hallway because he walks so slow. They smile, laugh and talk with one another as...

November 01, 2011

Student-Led Conferences

We take the mystery out of learning because we have a habit of talking at children and not to them. As many schools prepare for parent-teacher conferences they should consider involving the students in the process. It sounds like a radical concept to involve the student in the process of discussin...

October 30, 2011

Letter to a High School Student

Facebook certainly has made life interesting over the past few years since its inception. For those of us over 30, we have been faced with the opportunity to see those people from high school that we long forgot about. There was a time when we only had to worry about seeing high school friends every...

October 28, 2011

The "Bad Kid" Stigma

Every year we have students who need a "tune-up." A tune-up is when they need to see the principal because they had a one time issue with a student or teacher that needs an administrative intervention. Sometimes students are beginning to show a pattern of behavior and it is a good time for princip...

October 27, 2011

The Sky is Falling: Preparing for a 2% Tax Cap

"The sky is falling. I saw it with my eyes. I heard it with my ears. Some of it fell on my tail." Chicken Little Many educators have spent the past couple of years dealing with the realities of our economic crisis. Our budgets have been voted down and we are forced to do more with less. Schoo...

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The opinions expressed in Peter DeWitt's Finding Common Ground are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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