Sunday, April 10, 2022


CURMUDGUCATION: ICYMI: Not A Great Week Edition (4/10)

Not A Great Week Edition

We said goodbye to yet another member of the extended family this week, so that got things off to a sad start. And now that I look at the week's readings--well, I will warn you up front that it is not an encouraging batch. This is probably a good week not read absolutely everything here.

Tucker Carlson calls on men to storm into schools "and thrash the teacher"

Let's get the most infuriating thing out of the way first. No, there's not full context for the quote. Is there a context that would make it better? I don't think so.

Betsy DeVos and Her Money Is Backing Ron DeSantis

No big surprises here, but at Salon, Igor Derysh breaks down how DeVos money is funding Florida's governor.

Fact check on DeSantis Don't Say Gay story

You'll be shocked to discover that one of DeSantis's stories about the need for the Don't Say Gay law is not entirely acurate. 

What Teachers Do

This may be the shortest post you ever read from the indispensable Mercedes Schneider, but if you're a teacher, you will recognize this week in a teacher's life.

Missing: Future teachers ins colleges of education

NEA takes a look at how the pipeline is doing, and the answer is "not well." For example, "While 55 percent of U.S. students are People of Color, nearly 70 percent of prospective teachers are White, the AACTE analysis found."

The harm caused by the third grade reading ultimatum

Nancy Bailey looks at some of the damage created by the whole "pass the third grade reading test or else" movement.

Did we really learn anything about schools in the pandemic?

Valerie Strauss asks the big question-- specifically, did we learn anything that we did not already know?

State takeover of school districts no silver bullet

From Commonwealth magazine. In which Massachusetts learns that district takeover by the state doesn't actually do any good. In other news, the sun is expected to rise in the East tomorrow.

What music teachers do in the summer

Nancy Flanagan with a reminder that for many teachers, summer is not strictly a vacation.

Many teens report emotional and physical abuse by parents during lockdown

I'm sending you to this New York Times piece via the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette so you can skirt the firewall. It's a discouraging piece, but teachers can get confirmation here of their sense of the heavy load some students have been carrying the past couple of years.

Southwest Missouri high school teacher accused of using critical race theory loses job

A simple privilege checklist for a reading unit was enough to get this teacher a non-renewal of her contract, even though she had the support of her administration. Infuriating and depressing.

No, machine learning can't predict trustworthiness based on faces

Not directly tied to education, but a useful addition to the "No, Ai Is Not Magic" file. From The Debrief, a look at how some bad old claims get a new life via software.

"Educators are afraid" says teacher attacked for Romeo and Julliet unit

At Valerie Strauss's Washington Post column, teacher Sarah Mulhern Gross explains just how scary it is out there these days. 

If standardized tests were going to succeed, they would have done so by now

Steven Singer walks us through some of the history of education's greatest failed policy idea.

Mitchell Robinson for Michigan State Board of Education

Friend of the Institute Mitch Robinson is running for the state board. Passionate and committed and exceedingly well-informed, he would be an excellent choice. If you are a Michigan voter, you should vote for him.

What Biden's proposed reforms to the charter school program really say

There's a lot of flap this week over the proposed changed to a federal charter grant program, mostly because the charter lobby really really really hates it. Once again, we turn to Valerie Strauss's column at the Washington Post, this time to hear from Carol Burris about what's really going on. You can also read what I have to say about here at Forbes and here at this blog. The next few days are your last to go make a comment in support, and you should definitely do that.

Also at this week (I was busy)

North Carolina has a terrible idea about how to change their already-terrible teacher pay system


Check out this new method from the far-far-right for trying to scare school board's into compliance.

CURMUDGUCATION: ICYMI: Not A Great Week Edition (4/10)



There’s A New Technique For Intimidating School Boards. It Involves Bonds And Golf. - by @palan57 on @forbes

New Grant Regulation Proposal Raises A Fundamental Question About The Nature Of Charter Schools - by @palan57 on @forbes

North Carolina Is Considering Changing How It Pays Teachers. It’s A Bad Plan. - by @palan57 on @forbes
Congress Considers Lifetime Data Tracking For Post-High School Students - by @palan57 on @forbes

Louisiana Bill Would Silence All Discussion Of Gender And Sex In Schools - by @palan57 on @forbes

PA: Principal Charged With Wiretapping
File this under "Well At Least I'm Not Working At That School." Edward Pietroski is the principal of Conneaut Area Senior High School (over in my northwestern corner of the state). Last November several faculty members at the school held a meeting. Months later, they learned that their principal, with the assistance of the assistance principal, had recorded the meeting without anyone's consent or
PA: In Erie, School Shooting Followed By Teacher Walkout
On Tuesday (4/5) at 9:30 AM, the school day at Erie High School was interrupted by a shooting . Several shots were fired within the building, with one person injured. There was, of course, a lockdown (more about that in a moment) and a hefty police response. The shooting was described as "an isolated, targeted incident." These days, I guess, it's good-ish news if a school shooting is committed by
MI: DeVos and Far Right Team Up To Crush Public Ed (And Voting, And A Few Other Things)
Michigan's right wing has a problem, and she's living in the governor's mansion. Governor Gretchen Whitmer has vetoed many favorite proposals, including bills aimed at tax cuts , limiting voting rights , and vouchering education . So they've developed a new plan--just do a complete end run around Michigan's elected leaders and get their wish list mandated. Michigan allows something called a citize
How To Innovate On Assessment (And Why States Won't)
At Bellwether Education Partners, Michelle Croft marks Testing Season by wondering why states have not been using their new-found sort-of-freedom-ish-ness under ESSA to innovate with the Big Standardized Test. Despite rhetoric over the years about innovations in assessments and computer-based delivery, by and large, students’ testing experience in 2022 will parallel students’ testing experience i
Is The Big College Enrollment Dip Bad News?
Looking at reports that the pandemic resulted in many, many missing college students , Mike Petrelli (Fordham Institution) is musing that perhaps this is not bad news . On top of the pandemic dropouts, we've also got the plummeting number of students signing up for a college education. And while regular readers know that I don't very often agree with Petrilli, in this case I think he may have a v
ICYMI: Can It Be April Already Edition (4/3)
Every Sunday I offer up a compendium of notable readings from the previous week, because there's just so much out there and just in case you missed something, here it is. You can make sure you don't miss this weekly digest or any other scintillating posts by subscribing via the little box over in the right column (I have no idea where it is on your phone). There's also a Facebook page where you ca
Uh Oh. Don't Say Gay Compliance Angers Moms For Liberty
Well, I (among others) told you so . The letter has been tearing around the internet and, apparently, Florida, and yesterday, Moms For Liberty grabbed a high handful of dudgeon and sputtered onto the Tweeter machine: The letter writer is, of course, absolutely correct. This is exactly what the backers of the "Don't Say Gay" law asked for, and then asked for again when they insisted repeatedly tha
Moms For Liberty's Big Takeover Plans
Tiffany Justice, one of the co-founders of Moms For Liberty and experienced Florida rabble rouser , appeared on Steve Bannon's show to share some of her thoughts about ongoing culture battles, and at one point she laid out her plans for what comes next: BANNON: Are we going to start taking over the school boards? JUSTICE: Absolutely. We're going to take over the school boards, but that's not enou