Saturday, December 11, 2021

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 Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all

A site to discuss better education for all

Peter Greene: Amazon and the Future of Education
In this insightful and somewhat frightening article , Peter Greene draws a straight line from the Amazon model of production and sales to the “reform” vision for education.


Leonie Haimson: To Reduce Inequality, Cut Class Sizes
Leonie Haimson, executive director of Class Size Matters, is one of the nation’s most persistent advocates of class size reduction. She is the voice of many parents in New York City, who regularly tell pollsters that their number 1 wish for their children is smaller classes. Now that the city’s public schools anticipate a new infusion of funds, Haimson and many parents are pressing to get a commi
Ravitch & Burris: Mike Bloomberg Is Wasting $750 Million on Charters
The following article by Diane Ravitch and Carol Burris of the Netwotk for Public Education appeared this morning at Valerie Strauss’s “The Answer Sheet” blog at the Washington Post: Mike Bloomberg recently announced his plan to revive American public education, which he says is “broken.” His fix for a system that enrolls more than 50 million students? He will spend $750 million to expand charter
Nancy Bailey: An Overview of the War Against the Teaching Profession
Nancy Bailey has assembled a devastating review of a three-decades long effort to destroy the teaching profession and replace it with models derived from the corporate sector. She begins: The pandemic has been rough on teachers, but there has for years been an organized effort to end a professional teaching workforce by politicians and big businesses. In 1992, The Nation’s cover story by Margaret

DEC 09

Miami Superintendent Will Become Los Angeles Chief
The board of the Los Angeles Unified School District has hired Alberto Carvalho, superintendent of the schools in Miami-Dade, too PPP become superintendent of the Los Angeles. Carvalho has served in Miami as superintendent since 2008. Mayor Bill de Blasio tried to hire him in New York City in 2018, but Carvalho backed out after the appointment was announced. Alberto Carvalho, who has led Miami-Da
New Hampshire: State Commissioner Frank Edelblut Is Waging War Against Public Schools
The author of this article, Joe Shapiro, is a Democratic member of the state legislature in New Hampshire. Conservative Republican Governor Chris Sununu appointed home-schooling parent Frank Edelblut as state Commissioner of Education. Edelblut has used his office to promote privatization, not only charters and vouchers, but for-profit schools, online schools, home schools, religious schools, and
Texas: What Do Masks, Books, CRT, and Transgender Rights Have in Common?
Since this post was written in Texas by a Texan, you may have a clue about what these diverse phenomena have in common: They are sources of fear, anxiety, propaganda, and scare tactics used cynically to stir up the passions of voters. The article was written by Dr. Charles Luke of Pastors for Texas Children, a stalwart supporter of public schools. Dr. Luke writes: What do masks, library books, cr
Adam Laats: The Conservative Attack on Education That Failed a Century Ago
Adam Laats is a historian of education at the State University of New York in Binghamton. He has written extensively on religion and education, including Fundamentalist U: Keeping the Faith in American Higher Education and his latest book, Creationism USA: Bridging the Impasse on Teaching Evolution . He also has written about culture war battles in The Washington Post, Slate, and The Atlantic. Hi

DEC 08

Steve Ruis: Are Democrats Tricking the GOP into Resisting Vaccines?
Steve Ruis posed an interesting suggestion in a comment yesterday. What if Democrats tricked Republicans into fighting vaccines and masks? He wrote: Maybe we should approach this using the mechanisms of the GOP. Spread the rumor that the anti-vax/anti-mask campaigns were created by liberals to deliberately expose GOP voters to the deadly disease. GOP voters are known to be older and more likely t
Missouri: A List of Bills Filed by Legislators for the Next Term
A group committed to equity in schools—the Missouri Equity Education Partnership— posted a list of bills that have been filed for the 2022 session of the Legislature. The group makes no judgment about the bills. If you scan the list, you will see that the general trend is to clamp down on discussions of racism and to guarantee “parent rights.” The first bill listed is HB 1457, which “prohibits th
Jacobin: The Republican Plan to Undermine Fair Elections
Republican-controlled legislatures are passing bills to cement their control of elections even when they lose the popular vote. They have gerrymandered voting districts for their own benefit, and more ominously, they have passed bills to allow the state legislatures to nullify the popular vote in the future. Our democracy is being picked apart, bit by bit. Luke Savage, a staff writer at Jacobin ,

DEC 07

PBS: Anti-CRT Laws Make Teachers Fearful of Teaching about Race and Racism
PBS NewsHour posted an AP story that described the chilling effect of anti-“Critical Race Theory” laws. Laws that ban the teaching of certain subjects and that ban books never end well. They are the path to censorship and ignorance. New measures that restrict how race is addressed in classrooms have spread confusion and anxiety among many educators, who in some cases have begun pulling books and
Why Are Republican Leaders Killing Their Base By Spreading Misinformation About Vaccines?
NPR reported the results of a survey that correlated COVID death rates in thousands of counties by political affiliations. The counties carried by Trump in 2020 had higher COVID death rates than those that went for Biden. This is not surprising since so many Republican elected officials—local, state, and national—have opposed mask mandates and vaccination mandates while supporting quack remedies.

DEC 06

Civil Rights Groups, Unions Form Coalition to Urge Federal Funding for Community Schools
If you don’t know the work of Jitu Brown, this is a good time to inform yourself. Jitu Brown has worked for many years as a grassroots organizer in Chicago. He wants families and communities to be able to advocate for themselves, and he trains them to do it. He ardently opposes school closings and privatization, methods of ”reform” that are imposed on communities of color by the powerful. He led
John Thompson: The Ordeal of Julius Jones in Oklahoma
You may recall that a young Black man named Julius Jones was sentenced to death for murder in Oklahoma. He insisted on his innocence, and his cause attracted national attention. At the last minute, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt commuted his death sentence to life in prison with no possibility of parole. John Thompson, retired teacher and historian in Oklahoma, was a teacher of Julius Jones. He wr
Jack Hassard: Teaching Science with Art, Not “Standards”
Jack Hassard taught science teachers for many years at the Georgia State University. He now blogs frequently at The Art of Teaching Science. This post contains a fascinating perspective on teaching science. Hassard reviews a new book by a fellow science educator. He writes: The author of the book is Charles R. “Kip” Ault, Jr. Kip and I have collaborated over the Internet for several decades witho

DEC 05

Peter Greene on the GOP’s “Parent Bill of Rights”
Peter Greene reviews efforts by Congressional Republicans to pass legislation guaranteeing parent rights. He goes through the legislation point-by-point and concludes that most of the “parent rights” are already common practice in American public schools. He writes: The bullet point version of the bill lists five rights– the right to know what’s being taught, the right to be heard, the right to s
Jan Resseger Tackles the Issue of Parent Rights and Children’s Right to Learn
The issue of parent rights has emerged as part of a larger strategy to control what topics can be taught in school and which books students can read. Teacher professionalism has been pushed aside as Republican politicians advance legislation to protect parent rights. Jan Resseger points out that basic parent rights already exist: parents can decide whether to enroll their child in a public or pri
Missouri Parent to Legislature: Don’t Defund Our Rural Schools with Charters and Vouchers
The Network for Public Education created a website where. Parents could express their views about their schools. This post was written by Jessica Piper, a mom and a farmer in rural Missouri. She writes: I am a rural woman. I am a subsistence farmer raising hogs and chickens in Northwest Missouri in a town of 480 people. I live in a century-old farmhouse on a few acres on the Iowa border that we p

DEC 04

Nancy Flanagan on the Killings at Oxford High School
Nancy Flanagan, a retired teacher in Michigan and expert blogger, asks rhetorically, “Who is to blame?” Obviously the shooter and his parents, who bought the murder weapon and did not lock it away. But there are other causes of the senseless killings, she writes. Two things—true things—are repeated endlessly in these dialogues. The first is that the nation exposed its true values nine years ago a
Samuel Abrams: Should France Establish Charter Schools?
Samuel Abrams is the Director of the National Center for the Study of Privaization in Education. He writes here about his recent work on education issues in France. France has a long history of public schools, but it also

 Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all