Saturday, February 25, 2017

Catch up with CURMUDGUCATION - WI: State Superintendent Vs. Voucher$ + Deserving



WI: State Superintendent Vs. Voucher$
On April 4, two former school superintendents will square off for the state superintendent spot . The shape of that race tells us a lot about what the new politics-as-usual will look like in the years ahead. Wisconsin state animal. She is not rich, either. In one corner, we find Tony Evers . Evers has been the state superintendent of public instruction since 2009; before that he was deputy superin


One of my regular reads is Blue Cereal Education, a blog that regularly makes me say, "Gee, I wish I'd written that." Just this week, the post " It's Not About Them (It's About Us )" gave me both that feeling and a wave of flashbacks to when my children were young. The point is deceptively simple-- we should treat people based on our understanding of the right way to treat people, not based on wha

FEB 23

DeVos Folds
It was pretty much zero surprise that the Trump administration chose to undo the Obama protections for transgender students (despite his vociferous campaign assertion that he would be a far better friend to LGBT folks than Clinton). Thank you to the LGBT community! I will fight for you while Hillary brings in more people that will threaten your freedoms and beliefs. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldT

FEB 22

The Decline of Accountability
It was just a few years ago that outcomes were all the rage with the reform crowd. The problem with public schools, they said, was that we focus too much on inputs. Outfits like the Rand Corporation produced big reports on giving more weight to outputs. Or here's a paper by Mike Petrilli (Fordham Foundation) telling the state of Wisconsin how to look at those all-important outputs for quality cont
The Lessons of Fordlandia
This week in the New York Times, Simon Romero took a fascinating visit (with photos) to one of Henry Ford's most monumental failures. It's reminder that billionaires who want to remake the world in their own preferred image are nothing new-- and their failures frequently come back to the same old lessons. In the 1920s, Fordlandia was going to be Ford's solution to several problems. It would help b

FEB 21

Free Market vs. The Poor
Some people just aren't worth the trouble and expense. That's the underlying message that comes through repeatedly as GOP legislators across the country line up to cut the foundations out from under public education and the ACA. Sometimes they're pretty transparent about it. Pat Toomey just compared sick people to burned out houses to make the point that it's just unfair to ask insurers to cover t

FEB 20

Barber: Let It All Burn
On Valentine's Day, Sir Michael Barber (the head education honcho at Pearson) took to the74 to offer a rather odd and ultimately confused metaphor for education reform by walking us through the story of St. Paul's Cathedral . It's the test from his speech at the 2016 Global Google Education Symposium. Yikes. The problem, he asserts, began with the construction of the original St. Paul's, a classi

FEB 19

Toomey Doesn't Get It
Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey's office was one that was bombarded with phone calls, faxes, texts, tweets, emails, and messages strapped to the backs of delivery hamsters during the run up to the Betsy DeVos confirmation. At one point he was targeted as one of the GOP senators who might change his mind, which struck me as odd because I've met Toomey and heard him talk about school choice and I do
ICYMI: Extra Homework Edition (2/19)
It's a big list this week. As always, remember to share, pass on, and amplify what speaks to you and provide that writer with a wider audience. Betsy DeVos Broke the Ed Reform Coalition-- For Now Daniel Katz with a good historical overview of how we ended up where we are in the ed debates, and what a DeVos ed department means to reformsters. Stop Learning To Read From Blue Cereal Education, a refl

FEB 18

This work is Romantic because the author used lots of Romantic ideas, and the characters behave in a Romantic way that captures just how very extremely Romantic the work really is. The author has really infused Romanticism into the whole writing in a way that makes in undeniably Romantic. Welcome to my world. While this is not a direct quote of an actual student essay, it's of a type that English

FEB 17

PA Senate Ed Chair Wants To Trash Education
John Eichelberger has been a Pennsylvania state senator for over a decade, and during those years, he has been no friend to public schools or the teachers who work in them. Seriously-- this is District 30. Eichelberger is a Republican upstart who was swept into office on the wave of voter anger over the infamous late-night pay raise of 2005 . He was supported by an assortment of conservatives incl
PA: How Much Does Your District Pay in Charter Costs
An extremely handy spread sheet has been circulating lately, and if nothing else, I want to put a link here so that I can more easily find it. If you're in Pennsylvania, you'll want to look at this, too. Yes, 502 districts is a lot. The 

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