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Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Mitchell Robinson: In the Coronavirus crisis, look for the "Nurturers" | Eclectablog

In the Coronavirus crisis, look for the "Nurturers" | Eclectablog

In the Coronavirus crisis, look for the “Nurturers”

Content source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD), Division of Viral Diseases

In a time when our national leadership is glaringly, terrifyingly absent–and in fact, has made a horrific situation even worse, if that’s possible–I’ve been most impressed with the abundance of natural leaders emerging all around us…
  • Chefs like Cleveland’s Michael Symon, who is offering free cooking lessons on the Food Network’s Facebook feed every day at 5pm. He’s focusing on teaching viewers how to make tasty, nutritious meals using ingredients from the pantry, and is doing so with humor, grace, and humanity. Symon’s restaurants are great, but he’s an even better human being, and this shines through in these videos.
I watched his first video last night, and beyond learning how to make a lovely new dish with stuff I have already in the house, I found Chef Symon’s down-to-earth, authentic presence so calming–it was one of the first times since this crisis started that I felt a modicum of relaxation, and that maybe…just maybe…things might be ok at some point. Symon has a clearly visible sense of natural empathy which just bursts through the screen. It’s obvious that he’s doing this not only because he wants to share his knowledge about food and cooking with viewers, but that he cares–deeply– CONTINUE READING: In the Coronavirus crisis, look for the "Nurturers" | Eclectablog

Lessons in Educational Leadership from a Real-life Pandemic Crisis | Teacher in a strange land

Lessons in Educational Leadership from a Real-life Pandemic Crisis | Teacher in a strange land

Lessons in Educational Leadership from a Real-life Pandemic Crisis

My favorite teacher-blogger, Peter Green @ Curmudgucation had a good piece today. He writes about how school leaders often forget or ignore their core values and beliefs once they become focused on being managers:
A manager’s job– and not just the management of a school, but any manager– is to create the system, environment and supports that get his people to do their very best work. When it rains, it’s the manager’s job to hold an umbrella over his people. When the wind starts blowing tree limbs across the landscape, it’s the manager’s job to stand before the storm and bat the debris away. And when the Folks at the Top start sending down stupid directives, it’s a manager’s job to protect his people the best he possibly can.
Does your principal / superintendent / department chair /boss evidence those behaviors? Mine neither.
Although there are courageous administrators and titled leaders who do stand up to idiotic and counterproductive directives from above, they are infrequent. The best most teachers can hope for is a good Joe (or JoAnn) who doesn’t revel in their power–and understands or looks the other way when rules are bent or sidestepped for good cause.
It has long been my sincere belief that when teachers and school leaders get on the CONTINUE READING: Lessons in Educational Leadership from a Real-life Pandemic Crisis | Teacher in a strange land

THE ANSWER SHEET CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: teacher’s diary: ‘What my kids learned on their first coronavirus no school day’ - The Washington Post

A teacher’s diary: ‘What my kids learned on their first coronavirus no school day’ - The Washington Post

A teacher’s diary: ‘What my kids learned on their first coronavirus no-school day’

Jesse Hagopian is an award-winning teacher at Seattle’s Garfield High School, where he is an adviser to the Black Student Union. With Seattle’s schools closed — along with thousands of others nationwide during the coronavirus pandemic — Hagopian has started a diary about his experiences trying to teach his own children at home while offering help to students and parents. I will publish some of his entries here on The Answer Sheet in the days ahead.

Hagopian teaches English/language arts and ethnic studies at Garfield. He is also an editor of the magazine “Rethinking Schools,” co-editor of the book “Teaching for Black Lives” and editor of the book “More Than a Score.” He was awarded the national 2013 “Secondary School Teacher of the Year” from the Academy of Education Arts and Sciences and won the 2019 NAACP Youth Coalition’s Racial Justice Teacher of the Year award. He blogs at
Hagopian’s diary will reflect the extraordinary position that Americans find themselves in during the pandemic. Public life is largely halting in many parts of the country; President Trump recommended that people gather in groups of no more than 10; businesses and schools are closing; and major sporting and other events have been postponed or canceled.
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‘You were robbed’ -- Teacher writes open letter to high school seniors missing their last semester because of coronavirus crisis - The Washington Post -
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Kansas is first state to schools for remainder of 2019-20 year amid coronavirus crisis -- and California says it’s likely there too - The Washington Post -

Diane Ravitch Discusses The Stark Inequities Around School Closures - Network For Public Education

Diane Ravitch Discusses The Stark Inequities Around School Closures - Network For Public Education

Diane Ravitch Discusses The Stark Inequities Around School Closures

by Lea Ceasrine & Rose Aguilar

Many school districts across the country are closing schools, which raises several questions around childcare and access to food. Over 22 million students rely on free or reduced lunch. For many, it’s their only hot meal of the day. New York City is closing schools as a last result because school may be the only place students can get three hot meals a day, medical care, and wash their dirty laundry, according to the New York Times. What will it take to address these stark inequities?

You can listen to this discussion with Diane on KALW here.

Betsy DeVos’s problem with numbers - Network For Public Education - via @Network4pubEd

The 5 most serious charter school scandals in 2019 — and why they matter - Network For Public Education - via @Network4pubEd

CORONAVIRUS EDITION: DID YOU MISS DIANE RAVITCH'S BLOG CATCH UP NOW Diane Ravitch's blog A site to discuss better education for all

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

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

Happy Birthday, Wilfred Owen

If you have never read the poetry of Wilfred Owen, do it now. Today is his birthday. This bio comes from Garrison Keillor’s “Writer’s Almanac.” “It’s the birthday of poet Wilfred Owen (books by this author), born in Shropshire, England (1893). When he was young, his family was well-off, living in a house owned by his grandfather, a prominent citizen. But then his grandpa died, and it turned out t
Russia Will Change Constitution for Putin

We live in a new age of authoritarianism. Russian sycophants have cleared the way for Putin to remain in power for at least 16 more years. This from CNN: Vladimir Putin’s path to an extended presidency is almost clear after lawmakers voted to change term limit rules in the Russian constitution. Under current Russian law, Putin would have to step down as president in 2024, but the proposed amendme
Randy Rainbow on the Coronavirus Crisis

Randy Rainbow sings and acts “The Coronavirus Lament.” Timely and, as always, funny.
Arizona: SOS Arizona Needs Your Help to Stop Growth of Vouchers Forever!

The parents and educators who created SOS Arizona blocked the last expansion plan for vouchers by getting a referendum on the state ballot in 2018. They had to fight the governor, the legislature, the Republican party, the Koch brothers, the DeVos family, and other monied interests, who wanted to keep expanding vouchers until every student in the state was eligible for a voucher. The all-voluntee
Nancy Bailey: Online Learning Can Never Replace Human Teachers

Nancy Bailey wisely explains the lesson of the current emergency and boils it down to this fact: Online learning can never replace human teachers and support staff. Parents who are staying home with their children have taken to Twitter to express their admiration for teachers. “How do teachers do this all day with 30 children,” they wonder. Be sure to open her post and check out the links as well


New York: State Suspends 3-8 ELA Tests

A principal shared with me a letter he received, with the following information: New York State Education Department is canceling the English language arts tests, grades 3-8. No word yet on math tests, but they seem sure to be suspended too. The virus is spreading, not contained.
Kansas Update: School Buildings Will Close, Not School

In the fog of the pandemic, it’s hard to keep track of school closings and cancellation of state testing. In Kansas, Governor Laura Kelly ordered closure of school buildings but schooling will continue. CLARIFICATION: Governor Kelly didn’t cancel school for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. She closed school buildings. Schools will be working to implement Continuous Learning plans for a
California: Governor Says Schools Likely to Close for Rest of Year

Governor Gavin Newsom said that schools in California are likely to close for what remains of the school year. “California public schools are likely to be closed for the remainder of the school year in response to the escalating spread of coronavirus, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday afternoon. “I don’t want to mis
Kansas: Governor Closes Schools for Rest of Year

Governor Laura Kelly of Kansas announced that all schools are closed for the rest of the school year. Governor closes Kansas schools, puts most state employees on administrative leave Be prepared to hear about more states doing the same. No one knows how long the global pandemic will continue, but there’s no end in sight.
Colorado Cancels State Testing

Chalkbeat reports that Colorado has canceled state academic tests for 2020. Colorado will cancel state tests in light of coronavirus school closures, officials say Any state that insists on giving the federally-mandated tests should be prepared to answer how they expect to test children who have been out of school for several weeks without instruction. Under the best of circumstances, the scores
Happy, St. Patrick’s Day, Sort Of

Garrison Keillor writes in The Daily Writers’s Almanac about St. Patrick: “Today is St. Patrick’s Day, the annual feast day celebrating a patron saint of Ireland. “St. Patrick was born around the year 385, in a village in Wales. When he was 16, a group of Irish pirates raided his village and took many of the young men back to Ireland to work as slaves. Patrick worked for six years as a herdsman i
Note to Ohio: Lincoln Did Not Cancel 1864 Election

James Hohmann writes today in Washington Post that Ohio Governor DeWine should pay attention to history: Abraham Lincoln did not cancel the elections of 1864. ”Abraham Lincoln rejected calls to postpone the 1864 election amid the Civil War, even though his reelection rem
Providence: New State Takeover Superintendent Rolls Out Initial Plans

Angelica Infante-Green, the Commissioner of Education in Rhode Island, selected Harrison Peters as the takeover superintendent of Providence. Peters announced his initial plans, which sound sensible, like implementing restorative justice in schools and assessing which schools need emergency repairs. However, the article suggests that the big reform plan will be rolled out in April. Keep an eye on
Fareed Zakaria: Why Is the U.S. Response to the Crisis Inept?

Fareed Zakaria is a regular commentator on world affairs for CNN. This article appeared in the Washington Post on March 12: The outbreak of an epidemic is something like a natural disaster — a spontaneous, accidental eruption that is no one’s fault. But that does not mean we can do little about it and just wait for it to run its deadly course. The evidence is now clear: The spread of the virus ca
Peter Greene: This is What Administrators Are Supposed to Do

Peter Greene writes here about the forgotten role of the principal and superintendent . It is not to promote misguided and harmful policies such as those that were central to No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top, but to fight against them and to protect their staff as best they can against misguided mandates. For most of the past two decades, however, the folks at the top blew with the wind a

William Mathis: An Absurd Argument for Expanding Vouchers in Wisconsin

This review from the National Education Policy Center by William Mathis demolishes an absurd claim about the hypothetical economic benefits of expanding Wisconsin’s voucher program. The review is actually hilarious. 

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