Saturday, March 1, 2014

Russ on Reading: Dispatches from the Front NPE Conference in Austin, Texas

Russ on Reading: Dispatches from the Front:



Dispatches from the Front

Russ on Reading goes to the Network for Public Education Conference in Austin, Texas


I am feeling so fortunate to be here in Austin with so many passionate advocates for public education. There is literally a public education hero around every corner. Today I met superstar superintendent John Kuhn, author of Test and Punish, which I reviewed here. In one session I sat next to Karen Lewis, charasmatic president of the Chicago Teachers Union. In another session I got to meet and talk for a few moments with long time child and school advocate Deborah Meier. I had a morning conversation with blogger and teacher Anthony Cody who writes the Living in Dialogue blog for Education Week. I traded tweets with the wonderfully witty blogger Edushyster.

I haven't been among a gathering of this many passionate progressives since I marched in the Moratorium Against Vietnam in 1969. 

The best quote of the day came from John Kuhn in his fiery keynote address: "Our kids education shouldn't be a sandbox for rich people." 

Kuhn's speech was full of such trenchant fare including, "The purpose of 


Schoolhouse Live Watch live streaming video NPE National Conference 2014
Schoolhouse Live: Watch live streaming video from schoolhouselive at livestream.comNPE National Conference 2014November 24, 2013 NPE National Conference, NPE NewsThe Network for Public Education is pleased to announce our first National Conference. The event will take place on March 1 & 2, 2014 (the weekend prior to the world-famous South by Southwest Festival) at The University of Texas at Au



Twitter Chat 3.3.14 at 8:30PM EST – Authentic Incorporation of #StuVoice into Corporate Work Student Voice

Student Voice:



Twitter Chat 3.3.14 at 8:30PM EST – Authentic Incorporation of #StuVoice into Corporate Work 





Join us this Monday, March 3rd, at 8:30PM EST using the #StuVoice hashtag to talk about authentic incorporation of #StuVoice into corporate work. This special chat will be joined by corporations live from SXSW Edu to provide insight into the conversation. - See more at: http://stuvoice.org/blog/2014/03/01/twitter-chat-3-3-14-authentic-incorporation-of-stuvoice-into-corporate-work/

Network for Public Education endorses Ras Baraka for Mayor of Newark, New Jersey

The Network For Public Education | Network for Public Education endorses Ras Baraka for Mayor of Newark, New Jersey:



Network for Public Education endorses Ras Baraka for Mayor of Newark, New Jersey

npe endorsement ras barakaThe Network for Public Education enthusiastically endorses Ras Baraka for Mayor of the great city of Newark, New Jersey. Mr. Baraka currently serves on the Newark City Council and he is a leader in the fight against school closures & privatization.
Councilman Baraka had a long career as an educator – ten years as an elementary teacher, and twelve as an administrator. He also served as a teachers union representative for five years. This experience gives him a deep understanding of the challenges facing our schools, which was reflected in his responses to the questions posed by NPE.
Councilman Baraka said, “…our focus must be on strengthening, and enhancing our traditional public schools as the core educational reform strategy.” He is an advocate of small class sizes, and supports the right of parents to control their students’ private data. He is aware of the flaws in the corporate reform model now being implemented in Newark, and told us: “The notion that teachers are solely responsible for educational outcomes of children is a political view that is unsubstantiated by any research.”
The Network for Public Education only endorses candidates with a clear commitment to our schools. Councilman Baraka has lived that commitment, and The Network for Public Education offers him our strong support.

CHARTER SCHOOL SCANDALS: About Gulen charter schools + Gulen 101 webinar video

CHARTER SCHOOL SCANDALS: About Gulen charter schools + Gulen 101 webinar video:



About Gulen charter schools + Gulen 101 webinar video

(Video added 1/30/2014)


















Some of the videos shown during the presentation have been deleted from the video, but you will find them online.






  

--------------------------------------------------------

About Gulen charter schools 

In 1999, members of the Gulen Movement, a secretive and controversial cult-like religious group,opened their first charter school in the U.S. (in Ohio). Rapid expansion of the Gulen Movement's network has resulted in the largest charter school chain in the U.S.  (See my guest article in the Washington Post, "Largest charter school network in the U.S.: Schools tied to Turkey."3/27/2012). During the 2011-2012 school year, 135 Gulen charter schools operated in 26 states

This increasingly well-rooted network provides the Gulen Movement with daily access to the minds of over 45,000 students, and yearly access to hundreds of millions of hard-earned tax dollars. How did it come to pass that most Americans, including these students' parents, are completely 

Fethullah Gulen: Turkey's prime minister says all schools run by arch-rival must close | Al Jazeera America

Turkey's prime minister says all schools run by arch-rival must close | Al Jazeera America:



Turkey's prime minister says all schools run by arch-rival must close

March 1, 2014 8:30PM ET
Erdrogan wants academies run by exiled critic Fethullah Gulen to shutter
Topics:
 
Turkey
 
International
gulengulen
A Turkish protester holds up a banner with pictures of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen during a demonstration against the government on Dec. 30, 2013 in Istanbul. 
2013 AFP
Turkey's parliament has voted to close private preparatory schools, many of which are a source of income and influence for an Islamic cleric accused by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of covertly seeking to topple him.
The move is the latest as Erdogan battles months of protests calling for his ouster over charges that his government is corrupt and ineffective.
Lawmakers late on Friday set a deadline of Sept. 1, 2015 to shut the schools, Turkish news channels reported. Millions of students prepare at the centers for entrance examinations to win limited spots at state high schools and universities.
The row between Erdogan and his former ally, cleric Fethullah Gulen, erupted in November when government first floated the idea of shutting down the schools, a major source of income for Gulen's Hizmet movement.
In December, a corruption scandal led to dozens of Erdogan's allies being detained in police raids on allegations of bribery in construction projects, gold smuggling and illicit dealings with Iran.
Erdogan accused so-called Gulenists implanted in Turkey's police and judiciary of being behind the graft probe in a bid to undermine his government.
"Pull your kids out, if they go to these schools. State schools are enough," Erdogan told a campaign rally in the western town of Denizli on Saturday.
"They have sucked like leeches. Leeches are more virtuous: leeches suck dirty blood, while they 

Getting to the Heart of Education: Listening to the Whole At-Risk Student — Whole Child Education

Getting to the Heart of Education: Listening to the Whole At-Risk Student — Whole Child Education:



Stephen Sroka

Getting to the Heart of Education: Listening to the Whole At-Risk Student

"Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all." —Aristotle
Many at-risk students in schools are crying out for help with their real-life issues, yet many educators respond with an emphasis on academic proficiency skills. With today's stress on academic achievement at all costs with little regard for the mental, social, physical, emotional, or spiritual aspects of the whole student, many teachers teach tests and not students. Students become grade-point averages and not people. And many students tune out and drop out, literally or figuratively. What do our at-risk students need? What can you do to make a difference?
Teaching across the country, from the poor inner cities to the rich suburbs and on isolated reservations, I have had the opportunity to dialogue with at-risk youth. In these diverse settings, I have asked students for suggestions on how we can reach and teach the whole at-risk student. Students shared their thoughts, reproduced below, on how to retain, engage, challenge, support, and educate all students.
What problems would you remove from your school?
  • Apathy of teachers and students
  • Not being challenged
  • Not feeling welcomed
  • Bullying and fighting
  • Discrimination
  • Boring classes
  • Standardized

Bring Yourself to Work Every Day to Build Trust, Morale, and Culture — Whole Child Education
Bring Yourself to Work Every Day to Build Trust, Morale, and Culture — Whole Child Education: THE WHOLE CHILD BLOGBring Yourself to Work Every Day to Build Trust, Morale, and CultureFebruary 27, 2014 by Whole Child PodcastDownload Podcast Now [Right-Click to Save]Educators working in a positive school culture experience collegiality, trust, and tangible support as leaders and peers, creating an en

The False Markets of Market Based Reforms | School Finance 101

The False Markets of Market Based Reforms | School Finance 101:



The False Markets of Market Based Reforms

Posted on March 1, 2014



I’ve not spent a great deal of time talking about “corporate reform,” “privatization” or “market based reform,” mainly because I find these labels unproductive and oversimplified. Most of which occurs in our public and private sectors (also a simplification) and provision of public and private goods and services is far more nuanced – well beyond simple classification. Further, as I have noted on a few occasions, the rhetoric which emanates from one side or the other of these ideological debates is often entirely inconsistent. See for example, my explanation that strategies being promoted for public schools as derivative of successful private sector industry are anything but. That which is pitched as “corporate reform” is little more than failed private sector management.
A similar hypocrisy has been nagging at me lately, and I’ve touched on it, in part, on a few previous posts (here’s one). That is, there are sweeping claims that many of the policies being advanced these days are about capitalizing on the virtues of free markets – that we are trying to use the rationality that emerges from less regulated private sector markets to achieve more efficient production of high quality schools.
Enter charter schools and alternative pathways to the teaching profession.
Two interconnected strategies that are often discussed under this umbrella are a) the expansion of charter schooling and b) reduction of barriers to entry to the teaching profession through 

Coop’s Childhood Part 4 – Boys, Bushes, Baseball & Beyond | Lefty Parent

Coop’s Childhood Part 4 – Boys, Bushes, Baseball & Beyond | Lefty Parent:



Coop’s Childhood Part 4 – Boys, Bushes, Baseball & Beyond

March 1st, 2014 at 15:11

Lilac bushes in Almendinger Park
Lilac bushes in Almendinger Park
The brooding and mostly repressed sexuality of America in the 1950s that I was born into, was being transformed by a sexual revolution that was taking form in the early 1960s. The seeds of this insurrection included Zoologist Alfred Kinsey’sreports on his research on human sexuality in males (1948) and females (1953), along with French feminist writer Simone de Beauvoir’s book, The Second Sex (1949), starting to rekindle the feminist movement including the right of women to have the same freedom to express and act on their sexual desires as men.
Many of my huge Baby-Boom generation born starting in 1946 into a burgeoning middle class after World War II were beginning to come of age in a relatively prosperous America. We had better access to education, and through the growing electronic media of radio and television, access to a popular culture that included championing the expression of sexuality and other forms of human liberation. Facilitated by the development of a reliablebirth control pill in 1960, elements of American culture were moving away from traditional values and social strictures towards more permissive and informalized attitudes. Rock-and-roll music, emerging in the 1950s borrowing from black R&B roots and becoming mainstream in the 60s was a huge cultural 

Few Great Picks Among Teacher Movies | InterACT

Few Great Picks Among Teacher Movies | InterACT:



Few Great Picks Among Teacher Movies

MARCH 1, 2014


Over at Edutopia, there’s a discussion brewing about which film would deserve the Oscar for Best Teacher Movie. The conversation spilled over to Twitter a bit as well. Some of the movies are more broadly about education, not just teaching, of course. I have to say I’m not a huge fan of any of the leading contenders – at least, not if we think of them as teaching or education movies.Dead Poets Society, Mr. Holland’s Opus, and Goodbye, Mr. Chips seem to lead the pack among purely fictional stories, while Stand and Deliver and Freedom Writers, and Dangerous Minds are the based-on-a-true-story leading contenders.
Some of these are fine films, dramatic and compelling, well-written and full of good performances. But looking at them as teacher movies, only Mr. Chips leaves me with an unambiguously positive feeling. (I haven’t seen Dangerous Minds). The other movies show passionate teachers, but their passion becomes the centerpiece of the story; that might make for good narrative, but it doesn’t capture what I love about teaching or would want other to understand about good teaching. There’s also a significant cost – teachers sacrificing health, family time, jobs and marriages.
When it’s fictional, or a dramatized version of real life, it’s easy for viewers to shake their heads about the downsides and celebrate the good. In reality, the burnout and familial discord hav

The truth about ADHD: Over-diagnosis linked to cause championed by Michelle Rhee - Salon.com

The truth about ADHD: Over-diagnosis linked to cause championed by Michelle Rhee - Salon.com:



The truth about ADHD: Over-diagnosis linked to cause championed by Failed DC Chancellor Michelle Rhee

Researchers have discovered a disturbing link between over-diagnosis and the proliferation of standardized testing




There has been a lot of public agonizing lately about the steep rise in diagnoses of ADHD over the last two decades. There is growing, and justifiable, worry that a lot of kids are being put on stimulant medications who don’t need them.
What there hasn’t been is a plausible theory about what’s driving this explosion of diagnoses — 40 percent over the last decade and more than 50 percent over 25 years. The CDC now estimates that 12 percent of school age kids, and as many as 20 percent of teenage boys have been diagnosed with ADHD.
Blame has been directed at parents, for being so poor at discipline that they reach for a pill to make unruly kids settle down. Teachers are blamed for being so inept at maintaining order that they want students medicated into submission. Psychiatrists are blamed for being the pawns of drug companies peddling ADHD meds. But blaming doesn’t explain it. It’s not credible that an increase of this magnitude comes from individual parents, teachers and doctors suddenly pathologizing ordinary child and adolescent behavior. In my experience, most parents are quite reluctant to put their kids on psychotropic medication unless they’re in serious distress.
Now comes a book that, finally, offers a data-based analysis that could begin to account for an increase on this scale. “The ADHD Explosion, by Stephen Hinshaw and Richard Scheffler, considers all kinds of factors that may contribute to the surge, from diagnosis by undertrained and harried pediatricians to pharmaceutical advertising. But the eye-opening insight from Hinshaw, a clinical psychologist, and Schleffler, a health economist, who are colleagues at University of California, Berkeley, is the correlation between educational policies and the 

Nite Cap 3-1-14 #BATsACT #RealEdTalk #EDCHAT #P2


James Baldwin said it best: 

"For these are all our children, and we will profit by or pay for whatever they become."


A BIG EDUCATION APE NITE CAP







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YESTERDAY

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and Drummond schools and any other teachers in Chicago or elsewhere in Illinois who are refusing to administe
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Nite Cap 2-28-14 #BATsACT #RealEdTalk #EDCHAT #P2
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