Thursday, July 9, 2020

CURMUDGUCATION: Trump and DeVos Can't Make Up Their Damned Minds About Schools

CURMUDGUCATION: Trump and DeVos Can't Make Up Their Damned Minds About Schools

Trump and DeVos Can't Make Up Their Damned Minds About Schools



It doesn't seem all that hard to figure out how Donald Trump and Betsy DeVos feel about public schools in this country. And yet, they seem oddly conflicted.

DeVos famously called public schools a "dead end." Just last week, reflecting on the SCOTUS decision, she opined that the history of American education is "sad and static" and "too many students have been discriminated against based on their faith and have been forced to stay in schools that don't match their values."


Trump is admittedly a tougher read, since he's mostly ignored the topic, at least until he worked out that being pro-voucher would be good for some Catholic votes. Just last Friday he was standing in front of Mount Rushmore declaring--

Against every law of society and nature, our children are taught in school to hate their own country and to believe that the men and women who built it were not heroes but that were villains.

So schools are awful, terrible things that ought to be shut-- wait! What's that?

Trump tweet-hollers "SCHOOLS MUST BE OPEN IN THE FALL" and DeVos tweeters back, "American education must be fully open and operational this fall.”

And they really, really mean it because they promise to get schools the resources to safely--ha! No, just kidding. But Trump does threaten to cut school funding for any schools that don't open, and DeVos backs him up, slamming adults who are just too chicken and insist on making excuses. And CONTINUE READING: 
CURMUDGUCATION: Trump and DeVos Can't Make Up Their Damned Minds About Schools


Is it Time to Cancel Teach Like a Champion? – Have You Heard

Is it Time to Cancel Teach Like a Champion? – Have You Heard

Is it Time to Cancel Teach Like a Champion?



Teach Like a Champion, the best-selling guide to effective teaching by Doug Lemov, has sold millions of copies. But a growing group of critics charge that Lemov’s approach is racist and embodies “carceral” pedagogy. And because we have a thing about education history, we go all the way back to 1895 to explore another controversial teacher training model: The Hampton Institute, founded at the end of the Civil War with the express purpose of maintaining racial hierarchy. Special guests: Ilana Horn, Joe Truss and Layla Treuhaft-Ali.  Complete transcript available here. The financial support of listeners like you keeps this podcast going. Subscribe on Patreon or donate on PayPal.



Is it Time to Cancel Teach Like a Champion? – Have You Heard

What Happens When They Don't? - Teacher Habits

What Happens When They Don't? - Teacher Habits

What Happens When They Don’t?



States have finally started to release guidance to school districts for the “safe” reopening of buildings for in-person instruction. My state’s Return to School Roadmap takes a phased approach, with each phase providing guidelines that are either “required,” “strongly recommended” or “recommended.” In Phase 4, some of the requirements are:
“Facial coverings must be worn in classrooms by all students grades 6-12 ” and that “Facial coverings must always be worn by staff except for meals.”
Schools “must cooperate with the local public health department regarding implementing protocols for screening students and staff.”
Schools are also required to “provide adequate supplies to support healthy hygiene behaviors (including soap, hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol for safe use by staff and students, paper towels, tissues, and signs reinforcing proper handwashing techniques).”
The American Academy of Pediatrics’ letter advocating the reopening of in-person learning provides similarly authoritative guidance. It says that,
Bus drivers “should be a minimum of 6 feet from students; drivers CONTINUE READING: What Happens When They Don't? - Teacher Habits

What it could cost to reopen schools - The Washington Post

What it could cost to reopen schools - The Washington Post

What it could cost to reopen schools with covid-19 safety measures



The San Diego Unified School District has come up with a plan for the fall: It will reopen school buildings for all students who want to come, full time, five days a week. But, its leaders say, the district needs more emergency funding from Congress to promise this for the entire 2020-21 academic year.
If that money doesn’t come — and soon — in-school learning would last for only half of the school year, said John Evans, president of the San Diego school board. Then all students would return home for remote learning for the second part of the year. To stay open for the whole year and employ protective measures against the spread of the novel coronavirus, the district needs about $50 million from Congress, he said in an interview.
President Trump is now saying that he may cut funding for districts that don’t do what he wants: reopen schools full time, five days a week. He tweeted as much on Wednesday, saying: “In Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and many other countries, SCHOOLS ARE OPEN WITH NO PROBLEMS. The Dems think it would be bad for them politically if U.S. schools open before the November Election, but is important for the children & families. May cut off funding if not open!”
If he were to favor with funding districts that reopen full time, that could help San Diego, which is planning to do just that. But many — if not most districts — are planning a hybrid model for the fall, which would entail students learning for a few days in school and a few days remotely at home each week.
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos made clear on Wednesday she is not impressed with hybrid models and wants students in school full time. “They must be open, and they must be fully operational,” she said Wednesday at the Education Department.
On Tuesday, she said at the White House: “It’s clear our nation’s schools must fully reopen and fully operate this school year. Anything short of that robs the students, not to mention taxpayers, of their futures.”
School districts around the country have been saying for months that if Congress doesn’t provide much more funding, they will not be able to reopen safely this fall. The money hasn’t come yet — and there’s no sign it will anytime soon.
Congress included more than $13.5 billion for K-12 schools in legislation that passed in March, but education leaders say that doesn’t come close to covering the cost of reopening schools with the added CONTINUE READING: What it could cost to reopen schools - The Washington Post

NEA President: No One Should Listen to Trump, DeVos on Reopening Schools

NEA President: No One Should Listen to Trump, DeVos on Reopening Schools

NEA President: No One Should Listen to Trump, DeVos on Reopening Schools



In a flurry of tweets, President Trump condemned CDC guidance on reopening schools and threatened to withhold funding to schools that don’t reopen for fall, creating more panic for stressed families seeking leadership and assurances that their children can return to school safely during a deadly pandemic. Then he politicized reopening of schools, tying it to the November presidential election.
“They think it’s going to be good for them politically, so they keep the schools closed. No way,” Trump said of congressional Democrats during a roundtable discussion at the White House Wednesday. “So we’re very much going to put pressure on governors and everybody else to open the schools…It’s very important for the well-being of the student and the parents.”
NEA’s president Lily Eskelsen García says what’s good for students and school staff has nothing to do with politics and the safety and well-being of the student and parents is exactly what is at stake.
After Trump tweeted, “SCHOOLS MUST OPEN IN THE FALL!!!,” Eskelsen García fired back, “You forgot to add the word ‘SAFELY.’”
Safety does not appear to be a top concern of the Trump administration, who claimed the CDC guidance was too “restrictive” and too “expensive.” The CDC refused to modify what its health experts recommend, and education organizations like NEA are committed to following the science behind their advice.
“There’s no one that wants our kids back more than teachers … but we want to open it safely,” Eskelsen Garíca said on CNN’s “New Day.”
“I had 39 sixth graders one year in my class. I double-dog dare Donald Trump to sit CONTINUE READING: NEA President: No One Should Listen to Trump, DeVos on Reopening Schools

For Teachers Who Are Parents, Schools Reopening In The Fall Is Bad News | HuffPost Life

For Teachers Who Are Parents, Schools Reopening In The Fall Is Bad News | HuffPost Life

For Teachers Who Are Parents, Schools Reopening In The Fall Is Bad News
Educators share the thoughts and questions racing through their minds right now.


Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, many parents have already faced a major challenge: homeschooling their children while working full-time.
As back-to-school season starts gearing up, many parents are getting updates from their school districts on what classes may look like this fall. But what if you’re a parent who also teaches in a classroom? Those individuals are being faced with impossible decisions and very uncertain outcomes.
HuffPost Parenting asked parents in our Facebook community who are also teachers for their honest thoughts on the matter. Get into the mind of a teacher/parent below.

“Teachers are just as desperate to return to the classroom as parents are to send their children back. But I’m fearful of the rush to get them back to school as normally scheduled. The state education agencies are finally giving guidance, but don’t include answers to the questions many of us have. What happens to me if I get sick from a student? Do I have to use my sick days to stay home? What happens if my children get sick and have to quarantine? Why are the state education agencies still working remotely when they expect me to return with a class full of students? Why aren’t teachers being consulted just like the parents on our preferences? Who is responsible for online learning when I CONTINUE READING: For Teachers Who Are Parents, Schools Reopening In The Fall Is Bad News | HuffPost Life

Rating the NYC Dept of Ed’s Reopening Plan (scheduling) | JD2718

Rating the NYC Dept of Ed’s Reopening Plan (scheduling) | JD2718

Rating the NYC Dept of Ed’s Reopening Plan (scheduling)



Yesterday Carranza released the plan. Let’s start by comparing it to my “What to Look for” guide.
Variety of levels –  Look not just for multiple models, but for multiple models at each level. They have separate D75 models, but not models tailored to HS, MS, ES (they really are all ES models) 2/5
Details –  lack of details would be a tell that these will not work. Rotation details, but no actual scheduling details (what might a day look like). 1/5
Useable “out of the box” – we should see an option at each level that can be used with virtually no modificationIf there is not, we may have a recipe for chaos in September. Absolutely not. 0/5
Physical Education – If the models fail to address PE, that’s a very bad sign. Nope. 0/5
Lunch –  If the models fail to address lunch, it probably cannot work. The words “cafeteria” and “lunch” are absent from the document. 0/5
Some students fully remote –  If the DoE models leave groups of kids (not just volunteers) remote, that’s a sign that they are thinking seriously about this. The DoE models leave remote as a family choice. 1/5
Some classes fully remote –  if the DoE models suggest leaving whole classes/subjects remote, that’s a sign that they have done some actual thinking. Nope. 0/5
Social-Emotional Learning –  if they attempt to roll SEL into the schedule models, in a specific way, CONTINUE READING: Rating the NYC Dept of Ed’s Reopening Plan (scheduling) | JD2718

Thoughts on "opening" schools

Thoughts on "opening" schools

Thoughts on "opening" schools



From the perspective of someone who has taught every grade from 7 through 12, in public, charter, and private (both religious and secular) schools.
 CLASSROOMS —  It is impossible in most schools to have 6 foot between students. Last year I had up to 30 seniors in a room at a time, with a social distance rarely even 2 feet between them. To get to 6 feet I would have to limit the number of students to around 10-12.  To even get to a 3 foot distance in between would probably require a doubling of the number of classrooms, even maximizing use (teachers floating into rooms where a teacher has a period off). Very few buildings have that kind of excess space. And even if you could get to 6 foot distance, how do students maintain that coming in and going out of the room without creating problems in the hallways?
HALLWAYS — in most schools, even if you limit when students transition between classes, how do you maintain proper social distance when you have hundreds of students in hallway? what about going to lockers, which are cheek to jowl?
CAFETERIAS —  most schools use just about every seat.  You have students in line to get food.  They are close together.  They sit very close with one another, and they will NOT be masked while they are eating.  How do you minimize those risks for students? What about for the cafeteria workers? Those restaurants that have opened have in general closed salad bars, buffets, precisely because of the risk of spread.  In theory everything could be bagged lunches but then there are dietary restrictions for health and religious reasons even beyond preference issues. And then where would students eat? 
BUSES — a large portion of students go to/from school by bus. Many of those buses are crowded, and do multiple routes. To maintain social distance on those buses would require at least doubling the number of buses for most school systems, an expense they cannot afford. And they would have real trouble getting the additional drivers. CONTINUE READING: Thoughts on "opening" schools

NYC Educator: The Chancellor Writes Us Again

NYC Educator: The Chancellor Writes Us Again

The Chancellor Writes Us Again



Dear Colleagues, 

I hope you and your families are staying healthy and safe as we transition to the 2020-2021 school year. Earlier today, Mayor de Blasio and I announced our latest planning for bringing students back to school buildings in September—a plan that was informed by an internet survey with no controls whatsoever. I want to make sure you hear my rationale, however feeble it may be—understanding that it is very possible that pieces of this will change, given that COVID is exploding all over the country, and that it's likely to happen here too once we rashly open buildings. 

With all the ups and downs, one thing has remained constant: our utter indifference to your health and safety. It’s why we put off the closure of school buildings earlier this year — which was essential to the explosion of COVID-19 infection across New York City. Of course, we also closed our office buildings and work sites, meaning our gala luncheons are now largely take-out, but still from restaurants you could never afford on a teacher salary.

Now, as we look ahead to September, we see the big picture: the continuing rise in cases across the country; which we have ignored utterly in our premature opening plans; and the knowledge that as the trajectory of the coronavirus continues to evolve, we must focus on ways to resurrect Mayor de Blasio's political career, which alas, appears deader than a doornail.

In addition to rejecting guidance from health authorities, we have also ignored the input and perspectives of thousands of our colleagues, and hundreds of thousands more from our CONTINUE READING: NYC Educator: The Chancellor Writes Us Again

Teacher Tom: No Force on Earth Can Stand Before Us

Teacher Tom: No Force on Earth Can Stand Before Us

No Force on Earth Can Stand Before Us



Yesterday, I awoke to learn that the President of the United States and his education secretary are talking about punishing public schools that don't open in the fall by withholding federal funding. They've walked that back a little in the intervening 24 hours, but the message is clear: they are willing to sacrifice children and their families in the name of the economy.

This Covid-19 pandemic is far from over and while there are places in the US where we have slowed it through common sense sacrifices, other states seem to think that if they close their eyes and pretend hard enough it will simply go away. The result reminds me of when I was a boy and there were smoking sections in restaurants and airplanes: smoke doesn't recognize boundaries any more than a virus. When I shared this metaphor with a friend he crudely, yet to my mind more accurately, replied, "No, it's more like we're all in a big swimming pool and they've designated their states as the peeing area."

While much of the rest of the world has quelled the pandemic to the point that they've opened up a legitimate window for children to safely return to school, it doesn't seem likely that US schools can safely reopen before the end of the year. Yet the message from the highest office in the land is "Do it, or else."

This is far from the first time that elected representatives and policymakers have placed children on the alter of their CONTINUE READING: Teacher Tom: No Force on Earth Can Stand Before Us

CURMUDGUCATION: Betsy DeVos Is Failing Hard

CURMUDGUCATION: Betsy DeVos Is Failing Hard

Betsy DeVos Is Failing Hard


In the midst of all this chaos and confusion, it's perhaps easy to miss how thoroughly Betsy DeVos is doing a terrible job as Secretary of Education. And by so many measures.

There's the business of managing college loans. DeVos, you may recall, has been pointedly spanked by the courts for going after students who owe money on their college loans even in those cases where the law clearly states she's supposed to lay off. She doesn't like loan forgiveness for people who enter public service or for folks who were ripped off by predatory for-profit colleges, despite being repeatedly told that the rules don't care how she feels about them.


Now she's doing it again by directly violating the CARES act. The CARES act mandates a full stop on garnishing wages for unpaid student loans, but the department has told the courts that they continued to do so (and blamed it on employers).

Meanwhile, after months of standing around offering zero guidance to schools navigating the coronavirus crisis, she has joined Trump in demanding that schools open in the fall. As in, regular bricks and mortar style opening. In the spring, she was all about opening virtually, which was at least consistent, since DeVos has long been an advocate for virtual schooling. Now, suddenly, virtual schooling isn't good enough. This is going to make it hard for her to return to advocating for cyber-school, but then consistency isn't turning out to be her strong suit.

Take her spirited belief in keeping the feds out of state business. That was her north star for a few years, and the heart of her criticism of the previous administration. Now she has decided that using CONTINUE READING: 
CURMUDGUCATION: Betsy DeVos Is Failing Hard


Mike Klonsky's Blog: The AAP's school guidance principles don't align with Trump/DeVos mandated reopening.

Mike Klonsky's Blog: The AAP's school guidance principles don't align with Trump/DeVos mandated reopening.

The AAP's school guidance principles don't align with Trump/DeVos mandated reopening.




President Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos are threatening to cut federal funding if schools don't fully physically reopen in the fall, regardless of the state of the pandemic and with or without required CDC safety measures being in place.

They may think they think their reckless mandate is supported by the highly respected American Academy of Pediatrics. But it isn't. At least not if I'm reading the AAP's planning recommendations for school reopening correctly.

The AAP, the professional organization of pediatricians, would like to see schools reopen safely in the fall, as would most of us, especially most working families. But the timing of this report left some wondering if these experts on pediatric care were fronting for Trump and the mainly Republican early-openers who have driven up the deadly coronavirus caseload numbers across the country.

The organization “strongly advocates that all policy considerations for the coming school year should start with the goal of having students physically present in school” -- and the reasons are not just about academics.


The importance of in-person learning is well-documented, and there is already evidence of the negative impacts on children because of school closures in the spring of 2020. Lengthy time away from school and associated interruption of supportive services often results in social isolation, making it difficult for schools to identify and address important learning deficits as well as child and adolescent physical or sexual abuse, substance use, depression, and suicidal ideation. This, in turn, places children and adolescents at considerable risk of morbidity and, in CONTINUE READING: Mike Klonsky's Blog: The AAP's school guidance principles don't align with Trump/DeVos mandated reopening.

When It Comes To Reopening Schools, 'The Devil's In The Details,' Educators Say | 89.3 KPCC

When It Comes To Reopening Schools, 'The Devil's In The Details,' Educators Say | 89.3 KPCC

When It Comes To Reopening Schools, 'The Devil's In The Details,' Educators Say



Jeanne Norris is a teacher, the wife of a teacher and the mother of an 8-year-old in St. Louis. She'd love to send her son back to school in August. But, she says, "I feel like my government and my fellow citizens have put me in a position where it's not really in the best interests of our family."
Norris has a long list of reasons why. She says she has personally taught in buildings where ventilation systems are outdated and malfunctioning, and even soap for handwashing is in short supply.
In June, Missouri cut K-12 education funding by more than $100 million, amid the pandemic-induced recession. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities anticipates state budget shortfalls of 25% this fiscal year as a result of that recession. Education leaders have said schools may need more than $200 billion in new federal education funding to stop these gaps and meet the new need. The House passed a bill in May with $58 billion for school districts, and the Republican-controlled Senate has not yet acted on it, though the president has recently weighed in heavily in favor of reopening schools.
Jeanne Norris says she's disappointed by her state's response to the virus, and she's worried about the risk to her son's teachers too.
"You know, a third of teachers are over the age of 50, I believe. ... You want to talk about social-emotional impacts? Thinking about my child experiencing somebody die because of coronavirus? Sounds like a pretty heavy burden to bear."
Dozens of teachers, parents and district leaders around the country told NPR that the back-to-school season — that beloved annual ritual-- has fogged over with CONTINUE READING: When It Comes To Reopening Schools, 'The Devil's In The Details,' Educators Say | 89.3 KPCC

Intro to Next Book (Part 1) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

Intro to Next Book (Part 1) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

Intro to Next Book (Part 1)



I have been writing posts for this blog over a decade. One of the purposes for it is to take drafts of a forthcoming book that I am working on and use them as posts to try out new ideas (or renovated old ones) and see how readers respond. I am now working on a book about the three major reform movements over the past century that have swept over schools and what I experienced in each of those movements beginning in 1939 as a student, then a teacher between the mid-1950s and early 1970s, an administrator in the 1970s and early 1980s and since then as a researcher. The next few posts will become the Introduction to the book. Comments welcomed.
INTRODUCTION*
Just see wherever we peer into the first tiny springs of the national life, how this true panacea for all of the ills of the body politic bubbles forth—education, education, education.
                        Andrew Carnegie, 1886
School houses do not teach themselves – piles of brick and mortar and machinery do not send out men. It is the trained, living human soul, cultivated and strengthened by long study and thought, that breathes the real breath of life into boys and girls and makes them human, whether they be black or white, CONTINUE READING: Intro to Next Book (Part 1) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

Chutzpah and the Push for In-Person Instruction | National Education Policy Center

Chutzpah and the Push for In-Person Instruction | National Education Policy Center

Chutzpah and the Push for In-Person Instruction



The definition of chutzpah, according to the old joke, is the kid who kills his parents and then asks the judge for mercy because he’s an orphan. President Trump has added a twist on the joke: the kid who kills his parents and then complains that they don’t drive him to school.
When the European Union was hit early and hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, its member countries took the necessary steps to drive down their infection numbers. Through the now commonly understood mitigation steps such as social distancing, masks, and testing plus isolation, once-devastated countries like Italy, Spain, France, Ireland and Belgium now regularly report daily deaths in the single digits. In contrast, the death rates in the US have doggedly remained around 500 per day, with infection rates again climbing upward. While EU countries urgently buckled down, our corresponding urgency was to reopen bars, tattoo parlors, and hair salons. And we bizarrely managed to turn mask-refusal into a political statement. That difference between the EU and the US is one reason why they can now take cautious steps to return to normal-ish life while we drunkenly stagger toward an uncertain future.
President Trump can’t be exclusively blamed for all of the US failures, but his policies, public statements, and actions set us apart from countries that responded with greater urgency and wisdom. Now he’s threatening to cut off federal funding to schools if they don’t return to in-person instruction this fall. His framing is overtly political: “In Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and many other countries, SCHOOLS ARE OPEN WITH NO PROBLEMS. The Dems think it would be bad for them politically if U.S. schools open before the November Election, but is important for the children & families. May cut off funding if not open!” he tweeted on Wednesday morning.
Interestingly, the timing of this tweet corresponded with the publication of a front-page article in Wednesday’s New York Times about how Sweden’s decision to not impose social distancing has been a misadventure, costing thousands of lives and doing little to sustain the economy. The other three countries name-checked in the Trump tweet are similarly instructive. Denmark and Norway responded strongly even before the virus attacked there; the two countries together account for fewer than 900 deaths total, and the current infection rates are negligible. Germany was hit hard around April, with CONTINUE READING: Chutzpah and the Push for In-Person Instruction | National Education Policy Center

NYC Educator: Reopening Plans Translated

NYC Educator: Reopening Plans Translated

Reopening Plans Translated



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 8, 2020
CONTACT: pressoffice@cityhall.nyc.gov, (212) 788-2958

MAYOR DE BLASIO AND CHANCELLOR CARRANZA ANNOUNCE PRELIMINARY SCHOOL REOPENING PLANS FOR FALL 2020


Health and safety will lead all planning, even though health and safety are concepts rather than leaders. This, however, takes us off the hook, since we’ve publicly committed ourselves to open schools with no regard to the state of the virus in September. This approach didn’t work in Israel, South Korea, Australia or Beijing, but we’re hoping for the best.

NEW YORK
—Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza today announced last-minute improvised plans for school reopening in September, assuming, for no reasons whatsoever, the city continues to meet all necessary COVID-19 public health thresholds.

While giving valuable lip service to the health and safety of school communities, schools will be provided with specific models to develop schedules for students that include in-person and remote instruction every week. Teachers will be expected to do both simultaneously so that we don’t have to pay them extra money.

“Getting our kids back to school no matter what inconvenient realities we need to disregard is the biggest part of restarting our city. Parents with no idea what our actual plans entail have spoken clearly – they want their children back in school buildings to the greatest extent possible. We will shovel them in any way we possibly can,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio.

 “As we continue to plan for September, we’re steadfastly pretending to prioritize the health and safety of our communities while hoping schools will come up with workable schedules,” said Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza. “We can’t be bothered working out any practical or workable programs because we have to do Very Important Stuff”

“Re-opening our schools will be a complex and difficult process, but we are not going to be careless with our students, their families, and our educators,” said Michael Mulgrew, President of the United Federation of Teachers.

"The first priority of school leaders is always the health, safety and well-being of the communities they lead," said Mark Cannizzaro, President of the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators. "Though there is still tremendous uncertainty and incredible challenges ahead, we look forward to our continuing collaboration with the Department of Education as we determine when and how school buildings will open.”

Reopening plans will cover four main areas: health and safety, building programming and scheduling, blended learning, and family engagement. We are not at all concerned with social and emotional well-being, because that’s not a thing. Even as teachers teach both online and in person at the same time, all students will have an option to be all-remote in CONTINUE READING: 
NYC Educator: Reopening Plans Translated


Governor Cuomo on School Re-Opening: Data-Driven State Guidance, Local Input and Many Unanswered Questions | Ed In The Apple

Governor Cuomo on School Re-Opening: Data-Driven State Guidance, Local Input and Many Unanswered Questions | Ed In The Apple

Governor Cuomo on School Re-Opening: Data-Driven State Guidance, Local Input and Many Unanswered Questions



Governor Cuomo has emphasized and re-emphasized; pandemic decisions will be made by the governor, including decisions on school re-openings
“The state law governing schools and business closings or openings has been in effect since the pandemic first started and all such decisions are made by state government and not local government. Of course the state consults with local stakeholders and when it comes to opening schools in New York City we will consult with parents, teachers, health officials and local elected officials – but the Governor has said any determination is premature at this point and we will need to see how the virus develops.
. The Governor hopes schools will reopen but will not endanger the health of students or teachers, and will make the determination once we have more current information.
(Governor Cuomo Communications Director, 7/2/20)
This morning Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carranza released a list of specific details relating to New York City school re-opening.
The New York Times (here) and other news outlets (here) quickly reported the New York City plans
Later in the morning Governor Cuomo held his regularly scheduled presser, and CONTINUE READING: Governor Cuomo on School Re-Opening: Data-Driven State Guidance, Local Input and Many Unanswered Questions | Ed In The Apple

School Reopening: Teacher and Librarian Views with WTU and AASL – Education Town Hall Forum

School Reopening: Teacher and Librarian Views with WTU and AASL – Education Town Hall Forum

SCHOOL REOPENING: TEACHER AND LIBRARIAN VIEWS WITH WTU AND AASL



Equal access, inclusion at a distance, and basic health and safety are crucial and urgent concerns for schools and their libraries amidst pandemic. WTU President Elizabeth Davis and AASL President Kathy Carroll share teacher and librarian perspectives on reopening plans in DC and across the nation. On We Act Radio’s July 8 “Community thru Covid” — shared here while Education Town Hall remains on pandemic hiatus.
Elizabeth Davis, president of the Washington Teachers’ Union, joins “Community thru Covid” at the top of the hour, and Kathy Carroll, president of the American Association of School Librarians, joins at 11:30.


More details and related resources on Community thru Covid page. See this page, also for Facebook Live recording.
School Reopening: Teacher and Librarian Views with WTU and AASL – Education Town Hall Forum

First Virtual Classroom Session in Ethnic Studies - Year 2020 (CA Dept of Education)

First Virtual Classroom Session in Ethnic Studies - Year 2020 (CA Dept of Education)

State Superintendent Tony Thurmond Hosts First Virtual Classroom Session in Ethnic Studies Featuring Educators and Students




SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond today convened the first in a series of virtual classroom events on ethnic studies. The event today engaged students in a real-time dialogue about on the importance of ethnic studies and offered a lesson and activity within the discipline of African American Studies, one of the four foundational groups of ethnic studies.
An archived broadcast of today’s webinar can be found on the California Department of Education (CDE) Facebook page.
As the CDE prepares to submit a revised Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum for public review, these webinars will help students, educators, and families familiarize themselves with the core areas of ethnic studies, including how different groups have struggled and worked together, as well as key concepts such as equality, justice, race, ethnicity, and indigeneity.
“As we are engaging in more conversations about race and racism in our own communities and as a nation, we have heard from students and educators that the pursuit of a more just society begins in the classroom,” said Thurmond. “It’s never been clearer that now is the time to devote a special emphasis to teaching students about the struggles, histories, and contributions from people of color in our state and national history.”
During Tuesday’s virtual event, students and members of student groups throughout California (including the CDE’s Youth Advisory Council, Kingmakers of Oakland, M.E.Ch.A., and the Chicano Latino Youth Leadership Project) learned about the history of Ethnic Studies and Africana Studies from one of its founders, Assemblymember Dr. Shirley Weber, who is recognized nationally and internationally for her work to establish the discipline of Africana Studies. Assemblymember Jose Medina, who taught history and ethnic studies for three decades and drafted legislation to make ethnic studies a high school graduation requirement, also shared why ethnic studies is important for all students.
During a robust conversation led by Dr. Shirley Weber, many students commented that they were starting to realize the power of seeing themselves reflected in a curriculum, and how that can empower them in their daily lives and to accomplish their goals.
This series of youth-focused virtual classroom experiences continues this month, and focuses on all four foundational groups of ethnic studies: Africana Studies, Asian American Studies, Chicano Latino Studies, and Native American Studies. The series will feature prominent leaders and educators from each discipline to provide a lecture during the webinar. The virtual educational series occurs weekly through July 28. All will be broadcast on the CDE Facebook page. The remaining schedule and guests are as follows:
  • Tuesday, July 14, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.: Chicano Latino Studies with Assemblymember Jose Medina and civil rights icon Dolores Huerta.
  • Tuesday, July 21, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.: Asian American Studies with Karen Korematsu, educator, civil rights advocate, and daughter of late civil rights icon Fred Korematsu.
  • Tuesday, July 28, 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.: Native American Studies with Assemblymember James C. Ramos, co-founder of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians’ Cultural Awareness Program and director of the California Indian Cultural Awareness Conference at California State University, San Bernardino.
# # # #
Tony Thurmond — State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100