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July 01, 2013

Teachers Want Accountability From the Top

Teachers hold ourselves and our colleagues accountable for making learning happen in our schools. And now it is time to start holding those in power accountable as well.

June 29, 2013

The Nine Most Terrifying Words in the English Language: "I'm From Big Business, and I'm Here to Help"

We need to understand the reasons business interests are realigning our schools, and work to preserve the core mission of our public education system.

June 14, 2013

Merrow's Mockery Misses the Mark on Common Core

Common Core standards are not the end of the world. They are, however, an obstacle to the reclaiming of our profession, rather than a vehicle.

June 01, 2013

Is the Tea Party Right About the Common Core?

Although it may be hard for some education leaders to acknowledge, the substance of the Tea Party's criticism of common-core standards is solid

May 27, 2013

Will Teacher Prep Academies Replace Schools of Education?

Schools of Education will become an endangered species if this bill becomes law. Advocates have long hungered for "disruption" of the "monopoly" that schools of education have had on teacher preparation. This bill would create big incentives for states to allow virtually anyone to set themselves up as a teacher preparation academy.

May 23, 2013

Chicago: Time to End the Billionaires' Experiments With Mayoral Control?

Bill Gates suggested that in time teachers and voters would come along to see the benefits of the experiments the billionaire reformers want to do in our schools. That was four years ago - and the experiments have run their course. A research paper by Elaine Weiss and Don Wong took a close look at the results in Washington, D.C., New York City, and Chicago, exactly the three cities touted by Gates as the petri dishes for his market-driven experiments.

May 22, 2013

Paul Horton: Will Career Teachers Be Crowded Out by Corporate Reform?

The experienced teacher is the key: the conductor, musician, coach, and magician-of-motivation all wrapped into one person. Those who push the corporate education reform agenda do not understand or have forgotten what a great teacher does, so their solutions "crowd out" experienced teachers. Rather than investing in the human potential of teachers and students, they choose to invest in "bubble tests" and self-paced digitalized learning that are good for the profits of education corporations, but lousy for kids, parents, and communities.

May 20, 2013

Will the Data Warehouse Become Every Student and Teacher's "Permanent Record"?

inBloom, the non-profit started with a hundred million dollar investment from the Gates Foundation, is planning to create a digital record which, barring catastrophe, truly could be a permanent record of every K12 student, from their first interaction with the schools to the last. The amount of information they are planning to collect is staggering. Here are the several hundred categories, which include academic records, attendance records, test results of all sorts, disciplinary incidents, special ed accommodations, and more.

May 16, 2013

Dystopia: A Possible Future of Teacher Evaluation

This is a future I believe is possible given the systems and structures being promoted by technocrats like Gates. This is NOT the way the system has been described by Bill Gates or any of his representatives. They tend to use the language of feedback and collaboration. But as I have been asking, if collaboration is the goal, why must this be embedded in an evaluation process, which has the goal of determining who ought to be fired?

May 08, 2013

Bill Gates' TED Talk: Are Video Cameras the Missing Link?

Bill Gates has described himself as a technocrat, so perhaps it is natural that he would fixate on some piece of technology as the missing element. But the real things that are missing are the time that teachers need to work together, and the understanding that this time will be most fruitful when teachers are given the autonomy to tackle the challenges they face, rather than micromanaged and driven by test score data.

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