Blowback question of the day: Are teachers also ceding control of their profession to parents?

I may get blowback for this one, so here goes: is the relative apathy of teachers, and the myopic ignorance of the larger political realities affecting education, forcing them to cede control of the activist narrative to parents? I am part of many activist groups, passively and otherwise. Many of these groups are led by […]

To our bosses and our bosses’ bosses, the #edreform hiearchy

First, a vocabulary lesson. To the left, the simple Google definition of the word “priority.” It would seem as if thought and policy leaders in many school systems, particularly those in tenuous political climates, try to put schools in low-income communities of color in a position of “priority.” That is, divert the most resources to […]

Constructive critique and what is actually harmful to children

I saw this circulate today through my circles on doling our better criticism. I like it. It applies to my discipline because I feel as if I am constantly scrutinized by individuals who do not know how to give critique without immediately establishing a dishonest, hostile, and overall unsatisfactory professional relationship. This part is most […]

With all due respect @jeffbcdm, this doesn’t sound like a good idea at all

There are a lot of folks out there nibbling at the edges of this Common Core ordeal. We get it, it’s a “flashpoint,” or what have you. It’s tough to debate because so many emotions enter the conversation; that is, if you care about this sort of thing. I think a poll of the larger […]

The Axiom of the Abandoned: “I Am the Union”

Source: Washington Post

I am pro-union.  Teachers need strong representation and advocacy.  But it’s broken right now. Just when I thought that the speeches and editorials from Dennis Van Roekel and Randi Weingarten were showing a turn-around back to reality, and just when I thought those two were going to start fighting for public education and their members, […]

Parents Opting Out of Tests: What is Your Goal?

Causing trouble can be a full-time job!

After doing a segment on the local Albuquerque news channel about refusing the state tests, I received a few responses. Most were questions or suggestions for the website, which were all very good.  Then, I received a letter that was full of stuff I’ve heard over and over again, and to which I’ve responded too […]

Teachers Fleeing New Mexico Districts

Rocketship Charter Schools - Getting Kids Cubicle Ready!

This article was last updated 12/28/2013 in order to capture the numbers of vacancies as they were on that day.  The links to district hiring sites will reflect different numbers. Thanks to an orchestrated drive to punish good teachers and reward those who follow the rules (yes, there is a big difference), the numbers of early […]

Teachers: Never Forget How Much You Matter

Whether you teach at an elementary school, a middle school, a high school, or an alternative school, this message is for you. This message is for ALL teachers, regardless of your school’s zip code or socio-economic status. This message is for ALL teachers, from first year teachers to teachers one year removed from retirement. This […]

Bullying by Numbers: Value-Added Measures

Click to enlarge this mess

If you’ve been paying attention, you know that the evaluation focus for public education has moved quickly away from students and rapidly towards teachers and schools.  The propaganda is everywhere, and too many people are convinced by the mantra, “the greatest factor of student success is the teacher in the classroom.”  I don’t know who […]

Kindergarten teachers have really abandoned their professional ethics in favor of…?

Can anyone explain this to me, as captured by a friend in Texas?

I applied to be on the DCPS Chancellor’s teacher cabinet. Should I hold my breath?

I whipped up and out some answers to a few essay questions to apply for a seat on Chancellor Kaya Henderson’s teacher cabinet. I’m copying my answers below. There are three answers pasted together, which is why it might read strangely. Will this get me on? I don’t know. I just wrote how I felt. […]

Ask NOT What the Standards Can Do for You…

ccss template

Instead, make sure you’re reflecting on just how well you, dear teachers, are promoting the Common Core State [sic] Standards in your classrooms. Common Core-aligned lesson plan templates are starting to make an appearance, right alongside the Common Core-aligned lesson modules that are infiltrating ELA and math classes across the country.  These templates don’t look […]

Just a quick thought on teaching as a “calling.”

It isn’t. Well, not exactly. It shouldn’t, at least, be framed entirely that way. A “calling” to me implies religious or spiritual significance. For teachers, are they expected to walk through hot coals, endure a thousand lashes, for the sake of the children? After all, they are flesh and blood human beings with needs, desires, […]

Your survey once again used incorrectly, we told you so. @rweingarten @AFTunion #teach13

In discussions on the Common Core, regardless of the available critiques, I always seem to get this idea that there is overwhelming and strong support for the CCSS from ALL teachers. You read that, ALL TEACHERS! To wit: @thechalkface AFT: 75% of teachers support CCSS but say haven’t had enough time 2 understand & put […]

Dear North Carolina Colleagues

In North Carolina, they don't what to do with that spoon.

You know what I miss about North Carolina?  Go on, guess.  It’s what every former transplant says. I miss the ability to order sweet tea in any restaurant I go to and I miss BBQ pulled pork that actually has a smoky taste.  Syracuse just hasn’t found the charm in those two things yet. I […]

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