Latest News and Comment from Education

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Blinded by ‘Science’ | Teacher in a strange land

Blinded by ‘Science’ | Teacher in a strange land

Blinded by ‘Science’

At a moment when half of our elected officials are resisting Political Science as means of preserving democracy, or Climate Science as a resource for, say, saving the planet, it must be reassuring to some that the Education field, at least, seems to be pursuing Science these days. Aggressively.
Science standards this and scientific method that and exponential STEM everywhere. Because jobs.
Except—that’s not really the case. Currently, the top ten job opportunities in STEM fields are all in the T part of STEM, and there’s actually not much call for biochemists (and not a lot of money to be made, either). In fact, there are 10 times as many graduates in the life sciences as there are jobs. You can teach, of course, but—the party line is that a STEM degree will take you away from pedestrian careers like teaching into the glamorous world of lab coats and bubbling test tubes.
And speaking of…the ‘science of reading’ has bubbled up, again. If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll know that mainstream media is now eagerly printing pieces claiming that we have known all along, for decades, how to teach reading—that it’s ‘settled science.’ For some reason, these articles claim, benighted teachers everywhere have either not adopted this one sure-fire method, or more likely, their university training did not include scientific reading pedagogy.
Those teachers! Those colleges! When will they accept Science and teach all children CONTINUE READING: Blinded by ‘Science’ | Teacher in a strange land

Should a teacher really be the U.S. secretary of education? - The Washington Post

Should a teacher really be the U.S. secretary of education? - The Washington Post

Should a teacher really be the U.S. secretary of education?

In May, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, announced that if she were to become the U.S. president, she would hire a teacher to become education secretary and in the same speech, bashed President Trump’s education secretary, Betsy DeVos.
“Let’s get a person with real teaching experience,” she said in a May 13 email to supporters, taking the position that such experience would be useful for an education secretary. “A person who understands how low pay, tattered textbooks and crumbling classrooms hurt students and educators.”

Trump was not the first president to hire a non-educator as secretary; Republican and Democratic presidents have done the same.
Of the 11 education secretaries (not including those who served in an acting capacity), three were K-12 teachers: John B. King Jr. under President Barack Obama; Terrel Bell under President Ronald Reagan, and Roderick Paige under President George W. Bush. The rest, nope. Several of them, however, did have experience teaching in higher education, and one, Lauro F. Cavazos, who served under Reagan and President George H.W. Bush, was president of a university.
But DeVos’s attitude about traditional public schools — she once called them a “dead end” — and her poor performance at her confirmation hearing in Congress, rallied Democrats against her, and she became the first Cabinet member in U.S. history to be confirmed when the vice president broke a tie.
Warren, a former teacher, went directly after DeVos in that same May email, saying: “I’ll just be blunt: Betsy DeVos is the worst secretary of education we’ve seen.”
Her promise to hire a teacher as DeVos’s successor was met with support — and prompted several other Democratic candidates to say the same thing if they were to win.
So is hiring an educator as secretary an automatic slam dunk? This is the question that veteran educator Peter Greene explores in the post below. It first appeared in Forbes, and Greene gave me permission to republish it. CONTINUE READING: Should a teacher really be the U.S. secretary of education? - The Washington Post

Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day... | The latest news and resources in education since 2007

Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day... | The latest news and resources in education since 2007

It's Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day... A VERY BUSY DAY | The latest news and resources in education since 2007


Video: Robot Gymnastics

erik_stein / Pixabay I’m adding this new video to The Best Sites To Learn About Robots :
It’s That Time Of The Year When Students Begin Testing Boundaries – How Do You Handle It?

aitoff / Pixabay Things were a little rough in school yesterday, and I sent this admittedly ungrammatical tweet out that seemed to hit a nerve: I love teaching. However, late September is always a bit of a downer when some students begin to move away from being on their best behavior start testing boundaries — Larry Ferlazzo (@Larryferlazzo) September 25, 2019 How do I handle it? Well, it’s time
My Latest BAM! Radio Show Is On Student “Agency”

As a Teacher, Why Should I Make Student Agency a Priority? is the topic of my latest ten minute BAM! Radio Show. I’m joined in the conversation by Keisha Rembert, Sara Ottow, and Laurie Manville, who have also all contributed written commentaries to my Education Week Teacher column. I’m adding this show to All My BAM Radio Shows – Linked With Descriptions . You might also be interested in The Bes


‘Students Respect Teachers Who They Feel Respect Them’

is the headline of my latest Education Week Teacher column. In it, Sheldon L. Eakins, Ph.D., Jenny Edwards, April Croy, Lori Jackson, Shauna Tominey, Megan McClelland, and Keisha Rembert share their ideas on classroom management. Here are some excerpts:
Dinners Around The World With The NY Times

kaboompics / Pixabay There have been many features published over the years comparing what families around the world eat. You can see lots of them at The Best Sites For Learning About The World’s Different Cultures . Today, The NY Times decided it was time for them to do one. Check out Weeknight Dinner Around the World: We asked 18 families to show us what they have for dinner on a typical weekni
Jewish Teen Girl’s Diary About Life Under Nazis In Poland – Before She Was Murdered – Is Published This Week

RonPorter / Pixabay The diary of Renia Spiegel, a Jewish girl who lived under Nazi rule in Poland before she was murdered, is being published this week. Her tragic story will be a companion to Anne Frank’s (see The Best Sites To Learn About Anne Frank ). Learn more about it at: Before Anne Frank, there was Renia Spiegel: The ominous message of a long-forgotten World War II diary from The Washingt
New Study Finds Black & Poor Students Punished More Harshly Than Others When Involved In School Fights

Disparities and Discrimination in Student Discipline by Race and Family Income is a new study that reinforces previous research. You can find posts about all that previous research here .
The Best Videos For Learning About The Impeachment Process

heblo / Pixabay A lot of classes will be learning about impeachment in the coming days. Here are my choices for the best videos that explain the process of impeachment and its history (not the specifics of what is going on now):
Classroom Instruction Resources Of The Week

Each week, I publish a post or two containing three or four particularly useful resources on classroom instruction, and you can see them all here. You might also be interested in THE BEST RESOURCES ON CLASS INSTRUCTION IN 2019 – PART ONE. Here are this week’s picks: Limiting “Teacher Talk,” Increasing Student Work! is from Achieve The Core. When Middle School Students Think Like Historians appear

A Simple Way I Differentiate TPR (Total Physical Response) Lessons – Do You Have Other Suggestions?

harishs / Pixabay Most teachers of English Language Learners are familiar with TPR (Total Physical Response) – see The Best Resources For Learning About Total Physical Response (TPR) . TPR can probably be described most simply 

Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day... | The latest news and resources in education since 2007

TODAY'S Education Research Report

Education Research Report

TODAY'S Education Research Report

Helping smooth the transition to kindergarten

The schools and districts profiled in the four communities in this report have taken different steps to help smooth the transition to kindergarten for children and families, with a particular emphasis on promoting equity by focusing on better serving children from low-income families. Because of the historic divide between early learning and the formal K–12 school system, it will require years of
Using Local, State, and Federal Dollars to Improve Pre-K to K Transitions

When early learning experiences are connected from birth through third grade (B–3rd), children and their families can more seamlessly transition between ECE programs and grade levels. Smoothing transitions requires careful planning, effective policies and practices, and funding. The transition between pre-K and kindergarten is a particularly important one. There are a number of federal and state
Community Colleges Apprenticeship Programs

Apprenticeship is a proven education and employment model that combines structured on-the-job learning with related technical or classroom instruction to prepare individuals for specific occupations. Apprentices are paid, have access to work-site mentors, and earn progressively higher wages as they advance in their programs. The rising cost of higher education, combined with the increasing skill


Effect of Simplifying Financial Aid Offers on College Enrollment and Borrowing

. Recent policy and research efforts have focused on simplifying the college-going process, improving transparency around college costs, and helping students make informed decisions. In 2012, the Obama administration released the “shopping sheet,” a standardized financial aid offer that is intended to provide students with simplified information about costs, loan options, and college outcomes. Th
Investigating the Impact of the Pittsburgh Promise

Place-based promise scholarships are a relatively recent innovation in the space of college access and success. Although evidence on the impact of some of the earliest place-based scholarships has begun to emerge, the rapid proliferation of promise programs largely has preceded empirical evidence of their impact. This paper analyses the causal effect of the Pittsburgh Promise on students’ immedia
Parental Credit Constraints and Child College Attendance

Parents in the United States frequently supplement the student loans available to their children by cosigning on a loan, borrowing against their home equity, or with unsecured debt in their own names. This paper investigates whether some students are constrained from attending and completing college by their parents’ lack of access to credit markets by linking individual parental credit scores to
The Returns to Education at Community Colleges: New Evidence

This study uses nationally representative data from the Education Longitudinal Survey (ELS) to update the literature on returns to community college education, comparing the experiences of the ELS cohort that graduated high school in 2004 with those of the National Education Longitudinal Survey (NELS) cohort that graduated high school more than a decade earlier, in 1992. The author estimates that
The Wisconsin Scholars Grant (WSG)

The WSG is a privately funded program designed to help low-income Wisconsin families pay for college and increase college completion. Student access to the WSG is based on Pell Grant eligibility, Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) information, and college admissions records. The grant provided students with $1,800 per year for each year in which they were enrolled in a Wisconsin two
The Multiple Measures Placement System

Research shows that using only test scores to place students in remediation—the typical method—is correlated with over-placement, which can lead to unnecessary time and expense spent on the pursuit of a degree. To combat 
Education Research Report