December 2013 Archives

I feel as ambivalent about blog numbers as I do about achievement data. I've read some passionate, articulate thinking on education issues from virtually unknown teachers--and found some pieces with thousands of re-tweets shallow and poorly written. What feeds me is reading. All kinds of reading.


Courtney, a HS junior, after her class saw "12 Years a Slave:" If we don't learn about how terrible these events really were, how can we learn FROM those events and do things differently? We have to face the history so we can face ourselves and hopefully make America and the world a better place.


What I find disheartening is the gearing up of the Faux War on Christmas, using public schools as staging ground for stirring up unnecessary and phony conflict. Getting all huffy about greetings, menorahs and nativity scenes feels like uncivil, bullying behavior, something we shouldn't be gleefully modeling for students.


Flunked. Held back. Retained. It's failure, no matter what you call it. Imposed by adults, some of whom honestly believe they're instituting a kind of academic tough love--or at least, raising collective achievement data. Suffered by children who struggle with learning, for any one of a galaxy of reasons. And a call that should be made by teachers and parents, not at the statehouse.


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