Saturday, May 11, 2013

MORNING UPDATE LISTEN TO DIANE RAVITCH 5-11-13 Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all

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

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The Factory Collapse in Bangladesh

When I read about the tragedy in Bangladesh, where hundreds of garment workers died when the building collapsed, it reminded me of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire. Working at NYU, I frequently walked past the building where over 100 immigrant girls perished in a factory fire. The doors were locked. They could not escape. They could jump from the 12th floor or perish in the fire.
Events like these gave birth to the labor movement. Working people didn’t stand a chance until they organized to have a collective voice. The factory owners could treat them like human waste or lock them into their squalid work quarters or pay them as little as possible, and they had no alternative but to take the abuse or lose their 

Naison: I Will Not Forget or Forgive Those Who Destroy What I Love

Mark NAISON is a professor of African-American Studies and history at Fordham University. He writes:
Thoughts on the Destruction of the Teaching Profession and Other Losses
As I watch the teaching profession be destroyed before my eyes, through bi-partisan initiatives that are difficult to fight, and through the march of technology that some view as irreversible, I am filled with anger. This after all is my life they are rendering obsolete, something that has been a source of pride and excitement for me for nearly 50 years since I first started teaching tennis at Camp Kitatinny in Dingmans Falls NJ in the summer of 1963 at 

Reformy John King and His Magic Mirror

Almost everything you need to know about “reform” in New York State is explained in this fable by Arthur Goldstein, who blogs at NYC Educator.
As usual, Arthur is very funny trying to decipher the mysteries of reform and the personalities of reformers.

The End of the University?

In this article, the author predicts that technology will make the university obsolete.
He asks, why should anyone pay for a degree from Nowhere State University when they can go online and get a degree from an elite university for free? Or go online and learn whatever they want for free?
The underlying idea, at least for me, is the commodification of the higher learning.
If all we want from a university is a credential, we can buy it without going to the trouble of actually learning 

On Merit Pay

Merit pay is the idea that never works and never dies. It has been tried in the schools for nearly a century and has never made a difference, other than to demoralize teachers and destroy collaboration.
This reader uses an analogy to show why merit pay always fails:
Can you imagine offering a surgeon a bonus if he does his absolute best on your surgery?
How about offering your airline pilot a bonus for landing safely?

What Is the Truth About Education in Rhode Island?

If you read State Superintendent Deborah Gist’s description of K-12 education in Rhode Island, you got a pretty upbeat assessment.
Tom Sgouros, her most persistent critic, sees a different story.
He sees a state wedded to high stakes testing and unable to look beyond the testing regime.

What Arne Duncan Learned from Breakdown of Computer Testing

This is a story that may elicit a gasp from you. That’s what it did to me. Arne Duncan was asked about the breakdown of the computer assessments in Indiana. He responded with a brief soliloquy on how businesses fail and succeed, and why we cannot go back to the olden days of pencil and paper (which no one suggested). Be sure to read the excellent comments that follow the linked articles.
And ask yourself what happens if and when hackers tamper with the tests and the scores.
A reader sent this not-to-be-missed article:
This is our education CEO speaking on the fact that kids in Indiana are on Week Two of a frustrating, time-

Your Children Need a Néw Brain for Common Core

Oh, dear, success on the Common Core requires more than anyone knew. It is not enough to be able to read and do math. What is needed, this article says, is a whole new brain.
I feel sure that my old brain, which has stood me in good stead for lo these many decades, would not be good enough for Common Core.
So, good luck, young ones. Soon you will have a new brain. Soon, you will be good enough for Common Core.

Diane in the Evening 5-10-13 Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all

mike simpson at Big Education Ape - 1 hour ago
Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all: Hart Research Associates Explains the Methodology of AFT Common Core Polling by dianerav A few days go, Professor Ira Shor posted a comment and asked if Mercedes Schneider would analyze the poll showing that 75% of AFT teachers support the Common Core standards. Mercedes Schneider saw his request in the comments section and posted her analysis. Schneider is a high school teacher in Louisiana with a doctorate in statistics and research methods. Hart Research Associates, which conducted the poll, did not agree ... more »