Saturday, October 25, 2014

Lend a Blogging Helping Hand

I read many education blogs. Many education blogs. There are so many people doing this work, and my blog list over on the right-hand side of this blog gets longer and longer. I'm writing today to enlist your assistance for one of my faves.

Most of the help you can give bloggers is cost-free. Don't just like; share, repost, retweet. If you like the word, spread the word. These just take a few extra seconds, and they are hugely appreciated.

Few of these blogs generate income for their writers, but most of us still have our day jobs, so it's not a big deal. Some folks will occasionally try to draw the false equivalency between the sides of the debate about the fate of public education, but the fact is, on one side you have outfits like Education Post that get $12 million in start-up money from reformsters and on the other side you have guys like me, who blog before the sun gets up or after the papers are graded at night or over our duty-free lunch.

But those of us who sacrifice a little sleep or more leisurely chewing sacrifice is small potatoes to someone like Jennifer Berkshire, who doesn't blog in addition to her job, but instead of getting a real revenue-enhancing job.

Berkshire is the brains behind Edushyster, a blog that is wickedly funny in a way that I deeply enjoy. But beyond being wickedly funny, Berkshire also does the work of a real journalist. She goes places, and talks to people, and consequently sees and hears things that nobody else does. She's been doing on this for two years, depending on the kindness of strangers and the forbearance of the man to whom she is, apparently, technically married. Now she proposes to try a little something else, but that requires her to get a little more than a couch to sleep on in some strange city.

She is proposing to take a look at some fairly big issues in education and gentrification as they play out in Chicago, and she's doing it through a sort of crowd-sourced independent journalist platform called Beacon. And the crowd-sourcing part is where we can help.

Follow this link. Look at the pitch. And chip in. Help support a valuable voice in the debate over public education.

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