Sunday, February 14, 2016

ICYMI: Edu-reading for the week

It is Sunday morning, and so cold and still outside that you can't hear anything but some birds and the sound of ice crunching up against the bridge. Perfect day to curl up with some hot chocolate and read what's been going on in the education world.

Charter Schools Are Not the Answer in Ohio

The superintendent of the education center in Lorain County, Ohio (the area where I had my first teaching gig) explains why charters just aren't the answer in Ohio.

Looking Anew at How Teachers Teach

"Anew" might be the wrong word here-- Larry Cuban puts the current kerflufflation over teaching in the context of the history of teaching kerfluffles.

Why Do Teachers Need Instructional Coaches

I have mixed feelings about "instructional coaches," but Peter DeWitt makes a good case for them here.

Stop Humiliating Teachers

David Denby at the New Yorker speaks out against the tradition of hammering on teachers everytime the country hits a rough patch.

An Open Letter To John Lewis

I love this letter-- not because it stands up for Bernie Sanders against the civil rights giants' comments earlier this week, and not because it manages to do so without using any of the asshat attacks on Lewis that characterized a lot of the Sanders "support" this week-- but because it includes a great story and reminder of how social movements really make a difference.

Trust Teachers

Russ Walsh makes a solid argument against the age-old practice of putting our trust in programs instead of teachers.


  1. The article about the scapegoating of teachers was correct, but it will have no impact. Scapegoating is a very effective rhetorical technique. In this case, it takes real frustration and anger that should be aimed at various leaders in politics, the business community, etc., and redirects it to the defenseless K-12 public teachers. But a plea to stop such meanness won't do anything. The only solution for K-12 public teachers is to fight back politically, and this must include more teachers running for office. There is no other way to stop such groundless and cowardly attacks. And also no other way to save public education in America. The politicians and the public aren't going to change anytime soon unless confronted politically.

    Just imagine how the presidential debates would be different if just one public teacher were running. Lawyers are running. A doctor is running. Why not a teacher? Why aren't more teachers running for state legislative offices? Large percentages of state budgets deal with education, but teachers don't run for office. I'd really like to see more teachers running for office. Asking that a bully stops bullying you won't work. Teachers need to fight back.

  2. I was an instructional coach. It was supposed to be a way to have a greater impact on student learning but it didn't work out that way. It was a waste of time. For coaching to be successful, the right combination of circumstances has to align; most importantly, an administration who understands what the coach is to do and not to do (most either make the coach a junior admin or ignore the coach completely then blame the coach when they don't see what they want.) My conclusion was to put the coaches back in the classrooms and get class sizes down. That is best.