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June 05, 2011

Jonathan Alter Kicks the Hornet's Nest

@anthonycody It has happened again. An "education reformer" has used the pages of corporate media to go on the attack against a leading critic, Diane Ravitch. And lived to regret it. Jonathan Alter, an MSNBC commentator and former Newsweek columnist, penned an op-ed two days ago in the Bloomberg w...

June 02, 2011

Here's to Our Schools! SOS Videos go Viral

The fourth and final video in our special series of Save Our Schools video spots has been released. We do not have a big budget - just a lot of heart. So when we wanted to share some positive messages about why we are marching this summer, we went to YOU, to ask for images and video footage to help ...

May 25, 2011

Oakland Teachers Show the Power of Action Research

Last month I wrote about the Oakland Teachers Convention, which was convened by the Oakland Effective Teaching Task Force, of which I was a member. One of the most powerful messages to emerge from this dynamic event was that teachers desire time and support for collaboration centered on their teac...

May 24, 2011

The Antidote to Astroturf: A Real Grassroots Movement

A New York Times article published on Saturday has uncovered some of the strategies billionaire Bill Gates is using to influence the future of education in America. Reporter Sam Dillon has dug beneath groups that appear to represent ordinary teachers or parents, and found that often, these groups ar...

May 20, 2011

Here's to the Parents! We Need Them to Help Save Our Schools

Parents may end up being the deciding force in determining the direction of our nation's schools. Will we continue to use an ever-larger share of instructional time and scarce dollars for more and more tests? Will we continue to starve local public schools and expand semi-private charter networks? O...

May 18, 2011

California Governor Puts the Testing Juggernaut On Ice

California Governor Jerry Brown has taken a big step towards reducing the testing mania in the nation's most populous state. Up until his administration we have been on an accelerated path towards the comprehensive data-driven system that test publishers and corporate reformers have convinced leade...

May 17, 2011

Standardized Testing Mythbusters!

An excellent new book, "The Myths of Standardized Tests," has hit the shelves, and its authors, Phillip Harris, Bruce M. Smith and Joan Harris, are taking a systematic look at the belief system driving current education reform. They explain their outlook in the introduction: We are referring to ...

May 13, 2011

Local Teacher Association's President: We Must Challenge the Obama Administration's Education Policies

Yesterday I posted some concerns about the recent decision by leaders of the National Education Association to seek an early endorsement of President Obama at their Representative Assembly (RA) meeting in the first week of July. I also voiced concern about a statement on teacher evaluation that allo...

May 12, 2011

Will the NEA Endorse Obama and the Use of Test Scores for Teacher Evaluations?

In the past week we got news of two very significant moves by the nation's largest teacher's union (and actually the largest union of any kind). The National Education Association's Political Action Committee voted to recommend an endorsement of Barack Obama, and the NEA Board of Directors approved ...

May 11, 2011

Here's to the Students! Our New Video

A couple of months ago I shared some scripts for some video spots to build interest and awareness for the Save Our Schools March in Washington, DC, this summer. I asked readers to share images, and then I worked with talented film makers Tom and Amy Valens, who created the wonderful documentary Aug...

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