One big happy family.Shutterstock By Christian Lander | Originally Published at Quartz. August 29, 2014
A few years ago, I wrote about white people and their love of “awareness” on my blog Stuff White People Like. The post talked about how white people loved awareness because it was an easy way to feel like they were making a difference without having to make any real sacrifices. After all, curing cancer is exceptionally hard, but raising awareness of cancer is exceptionally easy. Both make you feel good about yourself, but only one requires you to be good at math.
White people just want to feel good about ourselves while at the same time making sure other people know that we’re doing our part. That’s why ribbon campaigns, rubber bracelets, and more recently, the ice bucket challenge have been such big successes. Not only do these things raise awareness but they take a minimal amount of effort and allow us to call attention to ourselves and our altruistic deed.
It’s safe to say the idea of anonymous charity died with the selfie.
All kidding aside, anything that helps to raise money to cure diseases that decimate lives is a good thing—the problem is that these diseases don’t need any more awareness. We all know diseases are bad—they end lives, cripple careers, and destroy families. So to waste all of our awareness-time on them is a bit foolish, especially when there are so many other things in this country where “awareness” could actually bring about real and lasting change.
In light of the recent events in Ferguson, there are few things that this country needs to be aware of more than what it’s like to be a black, male teenager. Our complete lack of understanding, or even a willingness to try understand on the part of whites is one of the key reasons why racial tensions in this country are so high.
I wish I could help here, but I’m a white, upper middle class writer with little to no experience as a black teenager. However, since I’m willing to dump a bucket of ice water on my head to raise awareness for ALS, there has to be something I can do.
I need to create a challenge, something that people can post to social media that will show that there is a double standard in this country, that we do get treated differently based on the perceptions of our race. It can’t require too much work, money, or effort and it has to draw attention to the good deeds being done by the person participating.
How often do you see something like this from a Times opinion page columnist?What should teacher accountability look like?We know what the current system of accountability looks like, and it’s not pretty. Ever since the passage of No Child Left Behind 12 years ago, teachers have been judged, far too simplistically, based on standardized tests given to their students — tests, as Marc S. Tucker poin
Perdido Street School: Time To Send Tony Avella To The Political Trash HeapI have nothing but disdain for the the Independent Democratic Caucus, the group of breakaway Dems that governed with Republicans and helped Governor Cuomo with much of his pro-Wall Street, pro-education reform agenda.The member of the IDC I have the most disdain for is Tony Avella, the "maverick" who stuck the kni
Parents of Chicago: Questions You Must Ask About Your Child’s School This Year
1) How many teachers/staff left the year before and why?
Schools all over Chicago are in chaos. Intentional chaos. The year after the largest number of school closings in the history of the United States left a wake of destruction and pain. Get the information from teachers and staff at your child’s school about how many teachers left and what’s going on that so many are getting out. Ask about the school climate, how teachers, staff, and students were treated last year. Ask if teachers are miserable at this school. Ask why they are miserable. Many teachers are probably afraid to say anything, but if you ask them about it directly, they might open up.
2) Are there positions left unfilled and why?
It is possible your child will begin the school year with long term subs. Be angry about this, especially if the position was filled the year before. That teacher was likely run off by the chaos.
3) What is the situation with substitutes?
Speaking of substitutes, CPS has manufactured a severe shortage of day-to-day subs. Many schools simply have no one to cover classes when teachers are out sick. Your child may ILLEGALLY be taught by a classroom aide, specialist teachers like the art/music/gym teacher, or special education teachers pulled from their students with special needs.
4) Is your child’s teacher on a “provisional certification”?
Attorney Anthony Shannon, center, and Attorney Christopher Engler, right, of Shipman and Goodwin in Hartford carry boxes with copies of the report on the investigation of Terrence Carter as they and New London Board of Education members Rob Funk, left, and Sylvia Potter, back center, and the rest of the board leave the lecture hall to go upstairs for an executive session at the Science and Techno
Fred Klonsky | Daily posts from a retired public school teacher who is just looking at the data.: Kristin Crowell. Beating Rahm requires deep organizing.[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fs-fT5xCw6w#t=247]by Fred Klonsky / 4min8-26-14 Fred Klonsky | Daily posts from a retired public school teacherFred Klonsky | Daily posts from a retired public school teacher who is just looking at the data.: “Driv
Annie Gilbertson | 89.3 KPCC | http://bit.ly/1qcmZpz L.A. Unified has already purchased 75,000 iPads, half with Pearson software. Here, second graders at Baldwin Hills Elementary swipe through their iPads for the first time and call out the apps they see. Maya Sugarman/KPCC August 29, 05:00 AM :: Los Angeles Unified officials who evaluated bids for its massive technology project
Thomas Himes | Contra Costa Times (LAUSD might as well amuse Northern California too!) | http://bit.ly/1qOB7Fy Posted: 08/29/2014 02:06:56 PM PDT :: In the third week of school, an estimated 45,000 students were missing from the Los Angeles Unified School District’s new computer system, according to a union that represents principals and administrators. Those students were not listed in
4LAKids - some of the news that doesn't fit: iPadGate: ARE JOHN DEASY’S DAYS NUMBERED? They should be after cozy iPad dealOpinion By Ted Rall, LA Times Editorial Cartoonist | http://lat.ms/1wI7HOh Aug 27, 3:38 PM :: It sounded like a great idea at the time: L.A. would give students a boost into the 21st century by putting tech directly into their hands. The Los Angeles Unified School District w
I love apple pie. I would be hard pressed to choose another pie that I like more than my grandma’s fresh baked apple pie. I mean, there are some contenders… there is also grandma’s sweet potato and pumpkin pie. It’s easy (and painful) to imagine the smells waffing from her Saginaw, Michigan oven. Then probably my great-grandmother pineapple cream pie. Then much farther behind grandmas’ cookin would be Key Lime Pie from Key West, Florida.
Second, the American Way is to vote, be heard, utilize the democratic process. So in that vein, I would like to ask for 10 seconds of your time to vote for two SXSWedu 2015 panels. You the public decide which panels are seated via SXSWedu PanelPicker.
What is PanelPicker? SXSWedu described the process in an email to applicants that I have excerpted below:
Each year, SXSWedu invites the greater online community to share their input on content they would like to see at the event. Public voting will open at 10AM Monday, August 11 and close at midnight Friday, September 5. The community will have the opportunity to vote on session proposals (votes will be kept private) and add comments on the ideas submitted. We welcome you to also use this commenting feature to expand on your session idea, make note of updates and engage with the voting community. During this four-week period, it is important to promote your PanelPicker idea to your community. Anyone with internet access can cast a single vote for as many proposals as they would like to upon creating a PanelPicker account… Community voting accounts for 30% of the final score for your session proposal. Remember, this is not a popularity contest, but an opportunity to demonstrate your ability to engage a community. Another 40% is contributed by the SXSWedu Advisory Board, and the remaining 30% is from SXSWedu staff evaluation.
SSPI Statement on Vergara Lawsuit - Year 2014 (CA Dept of Education): State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson Releases Statement on Vergara LawsuitSACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson today released the following statement regarding the Vergara, et al. vs. State of California, et al. lawsuit:"The people who dedicate their lives to the teaching profession deserve our a
Search the LAUSD iPad emails | scpr.org: Search selected LA schools' emails related to the district iPad projectProduced by Annie Gilbertson & Chris Keller | Published Aug. 29, 2014Emails obtained by KPCC through a public records request show Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy directed his staff to figure out how to incorporate Pearson PLC's software into the school
Torlakson asks state to appeal Vergara ruling | EdSource: Torlakson asks state to appeal Vergara rulingAugust 29, 2014 | By Jane Meredith Adams | No CommentsState Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson on Friday asked the California attorney general to appeal the landmark court decision in Vergara vs. California, which in June struck down statutes giving California teachers firing pro
A short blog, a big problem–can anyone help this Cami victim? | Bob Braun's Ledger: A short blog, a big problem–can anyone help this Cami victim? Can anyone help this victim of Cami’s “On Newark” plan?I know there are many such but this story struck a never because I knew a young man named Michael Davis who worked at St. Benedict’s Prep. He lived in the South Ward and walked through Weequahic Par
Calif. teacher tenure case spices up superintendent race - The Washington Post: Calif. teacher tenure case spices up superintendent race The Vergara case in California, in which a judge struck down that state’s tenure laws and other job protections for teachers, is about to become a central issue in the November race for state schools chief.The incumbent, Tom Torlakson, a Democrat, is a former leg
Transparent California: Salaries • Click here to view cities, counties, state and more• Click here to view all salary recordsTransparent California:Pensions • Click here to view all pension systems• Click here to view all pension recordsTransparent California:About Transparent CaliforniaTransparent California is provided by the California Policy Center and the Nevada Policy Research Institute as
Teachers Not Overpaid: Labor Day Assignment: Educating the Uninformed It’s Labor Day weekend, the schools have been in session about a week, and the disgruntled voices of a minority drone on. Their screeching refrain, often in letters to the editor and talk show call-ins, is familiar:Teachers only work half a year.Teachers are overpaid.Local school districts and their taxpayers shouldn’t have to h
Wait What?: Wait What? Supporter of Public Education Pelto/Murphy 2014Pelto Statement on falling short of the 7,500 signatures needed to get on the ballotLater today, the Connecticut Secretary of State’s Office is expected to officially announce that the Jonathan Pelto/Ebony Murphy ticket did not collect the 7,500 certified signatures needed to qualify for a position on the 2014 gubernatorial bal
Who will care for the public education of our children? | Reclaim Reform: Who will care for the public education of our children?Posted on August 29, 2014by Ken PrevitiWhen immense wealth finances political parties, elections become a mockery, a mere puppet show, of the democratic process. When the voting process allows two, and only two, sides which are both financed by immense wealth, the game i
AstroTurf Queen Gloria Romero, Who pays for all those AstroTurf Seeds?We Know Where YOU Get the Fertilizer Beware of AstroTurf Ed Reformers Just Like Michelle Rhee's Students first only BETTERAstroturf lobbying refers to political organizations or campaigns that appear to be made up of grassroots activists but are actually organized and run by corporate interests seeking to further their own agen
Jersey Jazzman: Once Again: There Are No Miracle Charter SchoolsRelinquishers gotta relinquish:It’s not a stretch to say that charter schools are some of the biggest winners in this year’s high school rankings list. Even though charters educate just five percent of American students, they represent 30 percent of the top ten schools in this year’s rankings. What’s more—and this is really the kicker
The Poor Pay the Highest Price for Charter School Experiments — Part 2 — Detroit | Life at the Intersections: THE POOR PAY THE HIGHEST PRICE FOR CHARTER SCHOOL EXPERIMENTS — PART 2 — DETROITAUGUST 29, 2014 BRETT DICKERSONPart 1 of this series focused on New Orleans and the radical experiment there with ALL charter schools serving the city this year. I showed that New Orleans is an example of how i
NYC Public School Parents: Why you need to get involved & bring your family to the People’s Climate March on Sunday, September 21st: Why you need to get involved & bring your family to the People’s Climate March on Sunday, September 21stParents, Grand-Parents, Teachers, and Families-- Please join us for this historic moment. by Kate FinneranWithout action, climate change will affect our f
LA School Report - What's Really Going on Inside LAUSD (Los Angeles Unified School District): Morning Read: Aquino defends his role in LAUSD iPad contractMorning Read: Aquino defends his role in LAUSD iPad contract Ex-LAUSD official denies steering contract to former employer The former Los Angeles schools official under scrutiny for his role in the district’s $1.3-billion iPad program defended hi
Local Control - ChangeTheLAUSD: Local ControlAdmission Day?With a national push to increase the amount of time that children spend in the classroom, it would have been understandable if the LAUSD had pushed back the start of the school year into August so that they could extend the school calendar. Unfortunately, the school year now also ends earlier. All they did was shift students into the class
CURMUDGUCATION: Bellwether Flubs Teacher Evaluation ArgumentI am fascinated by the concept of think tank papers, because they are so fancy in presentation, but so fanceless in content. I mean, heck-- all I need to do is give myself a slick name and put any one of these blog posts into a fancy pdf format with some professional looking graphic swoops, and I would be releasing a paper every day.Bellw
Labor Day Assignment: Educating the Uninformed | Dissident Voice: Labor Day Assignment: Educating the Uninformedby Walter Brasch / August 29th, 2014It’s Labor Day weekend, the schools have been in session about a week, and the disgruntled voices of a minority drone on. Their screeching refrain, often in letters to the editor and talk show call-ins, is familiar:– Teachers only work half a year.– Te
Home | Living in Dialogue: Lucianna Sanson: Move Past Discomfort to Learn About RacismBy Lucianna Sanson. 1. In terms of a response to the Michael Brown shooting, what is our responsibility as educators and citizens who care about social justice? Our response as educators should be to speak up about these issues and raise awareness about the institution of racism in America. White people, especial
‘Common’ Core Fails This ‘Uncommon’ Child | Missouri Education Watchdog: ‘Common’ Core Fails This ‘Uncommon’ ChildinShareRead the last sentence. An autistic child most likely would fail this test. So would a language delayed or ESL child. This is #CommonCoreFail: failing children.I received the following message from a mom on her son expressing concern on why Common Core would not be appropriate
20 Years Later: Relationships and Being a Champion | Connected Principals: 20 Years Later: Relationships and Being a Championby Tom Martellone • August 29, 2014 • 0 CommentsLast week I was preparing for the first day of school and I realized that this year is my 20th year in education. I spent the first five years of my career in the classroom and I’ve spent the next 15 years as a school administ
BIG EDUCATION APE - MORNING WINK AM POSTSHow Duncan’s teacher reprieve aids students, Common Core, tests | The Hechinger ReportHow Duncan’s teacher reprieve aids students, Common Core, tests | The Hechinger Report: How Duncan’s teacher reprieve aids students, Common Core, testsBy Sydney Morris and Evan StoneTest: It’s just a four-letter word for measuring skill, knowledge, intelligence, capacitie
How Duncan’s teacher reprieve aids students, Common Core, tests | The Hechinger Report: How Duncan’s teacher reprieve aids students, Common Core, testsBy Sydney Morris and Evan StoneTest: It’s just a four-letter word for measuring skill, knowledge, intelligence, capacities, or aptitude.In public education lately, test has become another kind of four-letter word: one associated with stressed out st
Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all: Paul Horton: Why is the Obama Administration Making War on Teachers?Paul Horton here attempts to understand why the Obama administration is waging war on teachers. He reminds us of Central Falls, when the Obama administration supported firing the entire staff of the high school. He remembers when the administration was neutral duri
Engaging Parents In School… | Going Beyond Parent "Involvement": This Is Interesting: Parents Help Decide Curriculum & Hire Teachers At Pennsylvania SchoolState College’s Delta Program middle school off to busy start is the headline of an article about a middle school in Pennsylvania begun by a local district to reduce loss of students to charters. Here’s an excerpt: Delta Director J
Schools Matter: Common Rotten Coreby Jim Horn / 56min 8-28-14 Schools MatterSchools Matter: Little Eva Moves to Wall Streetfrom Juan Gonzalez at the Daily News:Eva Moskowitz, the firebrand chief of the city’s fastest growing charter chain, isn’t just backed by Wall Street, she’s officially moved there — with Wall Street-type salaries to boot.Last November, Moskowitz, who for years boasted of openi
Answer Sheet: State education board slams Obama administration’s testing policiesVermont’s Board of Education recently passed a resolution on assessment and accountability in public education (see full text below) that slams some of the Obama administration’s key school reform policies. Adding its voice to the growing chorus of critics who have called on the Education Department to reduce its focu
Seattle Schools Community Forum: No Internet for Your KidI regularly check the district's website for updates. Here's the latest one (bold mine):All Seattle Public School students in grades K–12 will be able to access their personal email accounts from District computers beginning this fall. This change comes at the request of District principals with approval of senior leadership.SPS is not prov
Baraka “not satisfied” after meetings with Hespe, Anderson–and Christie disses him again | Bob Braun's Ledger: Baraka “not satisfied” after meetings with Hespe, Anderson–and Christie disses him againRas Baraka–when he used to be angryNewark Mayor Ras Baraka says he and state Education Commissioner David Hespe agreed to give the “One Newark” plan ten days from the opening of school to resolve its
empathyeducates – Governor Bobby Jindal’s Commitment to Common Core Gone With The Wind: Governor Bobby Jindal’s Commitment to Common Core Gone With The WindRemember when the National Governors Association told us that Common Core was our friend? It was not that long ago. The year was 2010. Way back then a states-led effort to develop the Common Core State Standards was adopted. For near a year, st
LA schools iPads: Officials on bid committee got free tablets, resort trips | 89.3 KPCC: LA schools iPads: Officials on bid committee got free tablets, resort tripsLos Angeles Unified officials who evaluated bids for its massive technology project received iPads from Pearson, met with a Pearson software executive and attended a weekend sales pitch for that software — all ahead of the public bid pr
NYC Educator: Ineffective City Teachers?: Ineffective City Teachers?Capital NY has a piece about the relatively large percentage of city teachers rated ineffective. On first glance, one might conclude that teachers in upstate cities aren't as good as teachers elsewhere in the state. Doubtless talking heads and op-ed columnists around the state will gleefully come to that conclusion, and much of th
Nite Cap UPDATEUPDATE UPDATE UPDATE UPDATECORPORATE ED REFORMKeeping The Heart Of An EducatorI remember a story a good friend told me about her first year as an assistant principal. She worked with a teacher who frequently referred the same boy to the office for misbehavior. Although the boy (I’ll call him Billy) deserved the consequences he received, the teacher was convinced he was impossible to
A School Isn't About Teaching Subjects, It's About Teaching Children | Frank Breslin: A School Isn't About Teaching Subjects, It's About Teaching Children A school is a sacred place. It reveres every child as a being of infinite worth and dignity, whatever his or her ability.A school is about teaching children the skills they need to prevail in a world that makes it difficult to keep one's bearing
The Last Internationale—Brilliant Young Rebel Rockers! | Bill Ayers: The Last Internationale—Brilliant Young Rebel Rockers!Shortly after the legendary rebel singer Pete Seeger passed from this world, a friend passed on to me We Will Reign from The Last Internationale—and life came back into balance. Sad to say so long to Pete who’d provided so many sweet harmonies for many, many righteous campaign
Former L.A. schools official Aquino defends conduct over iPads contract - LA Times: Former L.A. schools official Aquino defends conduct over iPads contractJaime Aquino, left, then-deputy superintendent of L.A. Unified School District, with a teacher at an iPad training session in 2013. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)By HOWARD BLUMEcontact the reporter The former Los Angeles schools official at the c
JUST IN: Vergara ruling stands, judge rules in final review: JUST IN: Vergara ruling stands, judge rules in final reviewPosted on August 28, 2014 6:41 pm by Michael JanofskyThe judge in Vergara vs. California today released his final review of the case, affirming his preliminary decision in June, that five state statures governing teacher employment rules violate the California constitution by den
Join the the Pre-Hoosier Kids #DeserveBetter Twitter Rally Conference Call | Truth in American Education: Join the the Pre-Hoosier Kids #DeserveBetter Twitter Rally Conference CallFiled in Uncategorized by Shane Vander Hart on August 28, 2014 • 0 Comments377Women on the Wall will be live in Texas tomorrow morning before and during Governor Mike Pence’s workshop at the Defending the American Dream
@ THE CHALK FACE: About the radio showJoin Drs. Shaun Johnson and Tim Slekar LIVE Sundays at 6PM EST and Wednesdays at 7PM EST on Blog Talk Radio for progressive, pro-public education talk radio. Call in to speak live with Tim and Shaun during the show, (805) 727-7111. You can also listen to our Monday "Sunday-Replay" at 7PM EST, and re-broadcasts of the archives every Tuesday and Thursd
Video: My Six-minute WWL-TV Appearance Against Common Core | deutsch29: Video: My Six-minute WWL-TV Appearance Against Common CoreAugust 28, 2014On Saturday, August 23, 2014, I participated in a six-minute WWL-TV Eyewitness Morning News segment on the controversy surrounding the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in Louisiana. The link to the segment can be found at the end of this post.The segmen
LAO: State should revise mission of CDE :: SI&A Cabinet Report :: The Essential Resource for Superintendents and the Cabinet: AUGUST 28, 2014LAO: State should revise mission of CDEby Tom Chorneau(Calif.) Lawmakers should consider revising the mission of the California Department of Education from one of school district regulator to more of a collaborative, service-based organization, the non-p
The same poo-poo in new bags. | Reclaim Reform: The same poo-poo in new bags.Posted on August 28, 2014by Ken PrevitiWhen Common Core State Standards (tests, texts and all) are given new CCSS “aligned” coverings by the state, does it matter?Florida Gov. Rick Scott played the “save us from big government control” game even as the newly branded state education standards, texts, programs, tests, gradi
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 CAPWhy Are You Silenced When You Oppose Common Core? | Missouri Education WatchdogWhy Are You Silenced When You Oppose Common Core? | Missouri Education Watchdog: Why Are You Silenced When You Oppose Common Core?(click on graphic to enlarge)The abov