America’s children and teens need well-qualified professional teachers who study and specialize in the best universities, are paid fairly, and treated with respect, not Grow-Your-Own Apprenticeship programs to make fast-track learn-as-you-go classroom monitors. It’s hard to believe parents want apprentices not fully prepared teachers working with their children. Grow-Your-Own Apprenticeship is not just a program […]
The Attack on Dr. Jill Biden is Cloaked Hatred of Teachers and Public Education
Much has been written about the offensiveness of the Wall Street Journal’s Epstein opinion piece on Dr. Jill Biden. It lacks respect for Dr. Biden, a veteran teacher, deeply committed to her profession and community college students, but it’s also meant to ridicule teaching and public education. First, it’s never wise to criticize intellectual pursuit, […]
Democratic Candidates Should Distance Themselves From Teach for America
Like most who support public education and the teaching profession, I routinely pore over media reports to learn what the Democratic candidates will bring to the table for PreK-12 education, and higher education. Here are the frontrunners’ plans. Yesterday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren released her education plan. A while back Sen. Sanders gave us his Thurgood […]
Investigating the Corporate Fingerprints in the Media Attacks on Teachers and Colleges of Education
A media rollout of criticism towards teachers and their COEs mostly over reading, has fueled debate about what teachers know about teaching. Are these reports what they seem, or is something else going on? None of these commentaries look at the effects of Common Core State Standards. Look closely and one finds corporate school reform fingerprints. If reformers […]
35 Ways They Dumb Down America: Still, There’s Hope!
They took all the trees And put them in a tree museum And they charged all the people A dollar and a half to see ’em Don’t it always seem to go That you don’t know what you’ve got ‘Till it’s gone They paved paradise And they put up a parking lot ~Joni Mitchell, Big […]
Defining “Educator” During a Teacher Shortage and the Privatization of Public Education
Define educator for America’s schools. It’s critical to nail this down during a teacher shortage and when there are attempts to privatize public schools. We don’t want people with inappropriate or no credentials teaching America’s children and directing their public schools. Ensuring that teachers and administrators are qualified used to be required. Since NCLB, alternative […]
Reading Instruction, The Attack on Teachers, and Two Areas of Concern
Almost every day there’s another report attacking teachers for how they teach reading. It divides parents and teachers. It’s also dangerous at a time when there’s a teacher shortage and teachers are banding together to try to save not only their profession, but public education. I don’t like to see my profession criticized so harshly […]
Teach for America: Their Harmful Effect on Special Education
Since 1990, America has put many school children, usually poor, in classrooms with Teach for America Corps Members (CMs) who get five weeks of training. They’ve also placed novices in special education classrooms. Many corporations and individuals donate to this group, undermining professional teachers who commit to teaching as their choice of a career. There’s […]
Nineteen For 2019: Choose This, NOT That, to Save Public Education in the New Year!
1. Kindergarten NOT The New First Grade Kindergartners should be treated like the four and five-year-old students that they are and not pushed to be first graders. The activities and instruction for this age group are well established. Real educators should take charge and ensure that there’s much free play and age appropriate activities. 2. […]
Preparing Teachers to Teach Reading: What Happened?
It’s easier to be ideological if you don’t have children sitting in front of you day after day. When you’re trying an approach and it’s not working, you have to back up and say, ‘I have to try something else.’ You can’t say [students] don’t fit the program. ~Dottie Fowler, a 15-year veteran teacher, 1998 […]