September 2008 Archives

At the end of a meeting today with a first-year teacher, she turned to me and nervously asked, "Do you think it's still possible at this point in the year for me to get my students to reach really great gains?" Like so many others, it hasn't been an easy ride so far for "Mary", a high school inclusion teacher. She teaches at a disorganized school and has struggled to understand her multiple science courses, was desperate to learn new ways to manage her classes, and had to figure out how to effectively plan with her co-teachers so her students ...

Here's a dose of warm and fuzzy for this Tuesday morning: The New York Times: "This is Generations of Hope, a nonprofit adoption agency that has designed a community to resemble a nurturing small town, complete with surrogate grandparents. Created out of a shuttered Air Force base, Generations of Hope seeks to rescue children from foster care and place them with adoptive parents who have moved here. About 30 children currently live with parents in 10 homes. The community is also home to 42 older people who have subsidized rent. The program’s annual budget for the Rantoul site is $500,000,...

If I were not a program director with Teach For America, I would be teaching. If I wasn't teaching, I would want to work here: Harlem Children's Zone. Their mission to close the social gap by mobilizing EVERYTHING is gutsy, energizing and makes so much sense. National Public Radio quotes New York Times reporter Paul Tough as describing HCZ as "'the first and so far the only organization in the country that pulls together ... integrated social and educational services for thousands of children' — all under one umbrella, all in one place, all at one time." "The agency, with an annual ...

I met a teacher in her classroom after school yesterday for a meeting, and the students banging and clashing across the hall practicing for drum line try-outs was so loud, we had to take our meeting to the other side of the school. It was so awesome. Because, as the teacher explained to me, at this public high school in DC, there was no marching band last year. There were no after school activities. After the last school bell, you could rarely find a teacher staying after to prep or work with kids. And there was no football field. Kids ...


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