Having weathered some 540 teacher job cuts—with more possibly to come—some educators in Clark County, Nev., are wondering why their district still needs Teach for America, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. "Why are they still coming here?" asks Justin Brecht, a Las Vegas elementary teacher in his sixth year who is—interestingly enough—a TFA alum himself. "If I find out that a Teacher For America [teacher] was placed in the 5th grade and I lose my job as a 5th grade teacher, I'm thinking, 'How is that OK?'" A local TFA official notes that,...


Hobo Teacher describes the scene at his high school on the last day of school: Everybody is rushing around like the last helicopter is about to leave Saigon....


The National Education Association plans on giving its 2010 Friend of the NEA Award to...Diane Ravitch.


A disgruntled Brooklyn teacher blows the whistle on questionable scoring practices on standardized tests in New York.


I've been having an ongoing conversation with a teacher friend about Race to the Top. Her take is that the competition for school reform "violates the idea of equality": Since not every state has applied for the money, not every state has access to the money. And, my teacher friend has noted, that even of the states who've applied, most won't be selected. (There were only two winners in round one, but there could be anywhere from 10-15 in round two.) In an interesting op-ed in the New York Times late last week, columnist David Brooks, a self-described "moderate conservative," ...


Former (as of a few hours ago) White House correspondent Helen Thomas for Hearst publications was scheduled to be the commencement speaker at Walt Whitman High School, in suburban Maryland, a week from today, but the school has rethought its decision, according to a number of sources, including the Washington Post. Thomas' offensive comments about Israelis, following the country's attack on the Turkish flotilla—"[They] should get the hell out of Palestine." "[They] should go home [to Poland, to Germany, and America, and everywhere else.]"—which she shared with a rabbi caused enough of a stink that not only did...


My colleague over at Education Week, Debra Viadero, wrote about an interesting teacher quality study in her Inside School Research blog today. In "Opportunity at the Top: How America's Best Teachers Could Close the Gaps, Raise the Bar, and Keep Our Nation Great," researchers at Public Impact explored what it would take to boost the number of high-quality teachers in the classroom. The researchers concluded that tripling the number of firings of poor-quality teachers from 2.1 to 6.3 percent would mean, after five years, that 70 percent of students across the nation would still lack access to high-quality ...


Epiphany in Baltimore has become so frustrated with his school that he's having a hard time blogging about it anymore: I'm at a point now where I'm increasingly feeling like I can't write about the issues facing an urban high school teacher in Baltimore City, where it seems more and more like "getting the numbers" is more important than educating the children. I posted some things over the weekend that I took down, just because of fears of repercussions. Incidentally, this is just an impression, but it has occurred to me lately that—outside of edutech area—there seem to ...


What if students were the ones teaching teachers about new technologies to be used in the classroom?


In an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, author and educator Mike Rose encourages new teachers to stand fast against the "push to define teaching in technical and managerial terms." He writes: You hear little from the federal Department of Education or the local school board about engaging young people's minds or about teaching as an intellectual journey. You don't often hear about the values that brought you into teaching. They are the mind and heart of the work you will be doing....


Thirty-three states across the nation have proposed cutting K-12 spending in the 2011 fiscal year.


After a three year wait, District of Columbia teachers approved their new contract today. The new five-year agreement grants 21.6% raises to teachers, raising the average salary from $67,000 to $81,000. The contract, which is said to be the first of its kind in the country, is being supported by $60 million in foundation money. It will give Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee the ability to award performance pay and fire underperforming teachers, reports Education Week staff writer Dakarai Aarons. At the same time, the New York Times is reporting that New York City's Mayor Bloomberg is freezing ...


Ever wonder why exactly African-American students who do well in school are seen by some of their peers as "acting white" (as Michelle Obama among others has testified to)? According to Stuart Buck, an author and University of Arkansas doctoral candidate, the disparagement actually derives from the school-desegregation movement in the 1960s: Although desegregation arose from noble and necessary impulses, and although desegregation was to the overall benefit of the nation, it was often implemented in a way that was devastating to black communities. It destroyed black schools, reduced the numbers of black principals and teachers who could serve as ...


On Wednesday, Harlem's Apollo Theater—where the Jackson 5, Stevie Wonder, and Billie Holiday once performed—will host New York City's first Teachers' Night! as part of its Amateur Night series, reports the New York Times. Seventeen teacher acts are expected to perform in an event where, according to Apollo tradition, the audience will determine who lives and who dies on the stage. Among the acts will be a self-described "explosive" hula hooper who has performed in Las Vegas and Off Broadway, a band called the Suspensions (rejected names included the Hall Passes and Detention), as well as comedians,...


An education professor argues that efforts to tie teachers' professional status to student test scores could stifle good instruction. Is he right?


Oklahoma teachers got some tough news this week that could hit them in their wallets.


In a Washington Post op-ed, the chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers makes the economic case for the education jobs bill: Because unemployed teachers have to cut back on spending, local businesses and overall economic activity suffer. And the costs of decreased learning time and support for students will be felt not just in the next year or two but will reduce our productivity for decades to come. Meanwhile, North Carolina teacher Cindi Rigsbee is furious after reading that her state is cutting teaching jobs even while maintaining its budget (to the tune of $14 million) for ...


A new English curriculum in Nevada could eliminate the standard high school literature canon, and a number of teachers are not happy about that.


What makes some teachers better than others? A new study from the Rand Corp. concludes that, well, it's tough to know. The study, which examined data from the Los Angeles Unified School District over a five year period, found that there was little correlation between teacher effectiveness (as measured by student test-score progress) and any particular qualifications or credentials. That includes years of experience, education level attained, or licensure test scores. Even initially failing a licensure exam showed no "statistically significant link" to a teacher's future effectiveness. So what now? The study suggests that "education experts" may need to "develop ...


Miss Eyre, in a post on NYC Educator, explains her ambigious stance on her school's student dress code policy. As well, if a child is dressed improperly, I am supposed to send that child directly to the office to either change clothes or wait for a parent or guardian to bring a change of clothes. Now, again, I am theoretically in favor of a policy like this. However, in the recent past at my school, a child has told a teacher to go f--- herself only to be promptly returned to the classroom, and another child called a classmate a ...


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