January 2014 Archives

We can do much better than "prepare" students for the next educational level. And--should we even be thinking about how to prepare students for an efficient (read: profitable) workplace? Is that our job as educators?

What kind of teaching force do we want, anyway? Are we looking for a diverse mix of candidates--those who grew up in the tough neighborhoods where they want to teach, those coming to the classroom after success in another career or raising children? Do we want content experts? Passionate advocates for children? Role models? How do we test for those things?

There are lots of reasons to oppose the Common Core. But disaggregating the good reasons from the outright baloney is important. When we join the crazies, we reinforce their craziness and further muddy the discourse, if that's even possible. Opponents of the Common Core might get what they want--the end of the CCSS --but other, very negative consequences in addition: further damage to, and fear-based withdrawal from, public schools, for starters.

The kids I worry about? The ones society has decided are not worth the effort. Who are usually in schools where the arts and lots of other programming once considered essential are nonexistent.


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