Sunday, February 28, 2021

ICYMI: Unsurprised But Disappointed Edition (2/28)

 Well, it didn't take long for Biden to return to his corporate ed reform roots. Not a surprise, but even when hope is a very tiny thing with very small feathers, it's a bummer when a big cat chomps it up. Time to move on. Here's some reading from the week.

America prefers teachers who offer themselves as tribute. And that needs to stop.

Myriam Gurba at lulzcollective with a hardhitting piece looking at that damned hero teacher myth.

"When I'm gone..."

Accountabaloney looks at the issues of missing students, and the dominoes that are going to fall because of them.

Learn To Earn

At Have You Heard, Jack Schneider and Jennifer Berkshire talk to Cristina Groeger about a topic that is often on my mind--why the whole "educate the poors and they will become not-poors" doesn't, and can't, work

Teachers Unions aren't the obstacle to reopening schools  

At the New Yorker, Sarah Jones takes a more balanced look at what thee real problems are (hint: years of infrastructure neglect aren't helpful)

US Ed Department Promotes Putting Student Records on Blockchain

Cointelegraph caught this grant from the department of creepy developments.

We Don't Need Standardized Testing in a Pandemic

I wrote about this Jersey Jazzman piece this week, and if you still haven't read it, here I am telling you again to go read it.

The Most Important "Skill" In A Post-Covid World

Joshua Hatala blogs about schools, the pandemic, and the new post-modern demand that students "figure it out" as they contemplate life and the world.

Education Development Center and Urban Collaborative

Thomas Ultican takes another deep dive into another group of education disruptors.

A History of Technological Hype

At the Kappan, Victoria Cain and Adam Laats take a look at the long, sad history of technological baloney. A good swift overview.

Standardized Testing during the Pandemic is Corporate Welfare Not Student Equity

Steven Singer lays it out.

Teachers, Testing and Why We Might Just Chill

Nancy Flanagan on why we could maybe just take a breath about the whole testing thing. 

Why Aren't There More Black Teachers?

Rann Miller at The Progressive addresses what should be one of our major concerns in education these days.

Philly-based group launches $3.12 million initiative to develop Black teachers

In the Philadelphia Inquirer, a look at a group that has a plan  for expanding the Black teaching force. Their allies aren't necessarily friends of public education, but this is work that needs to be done.

My Complete, Unedited Review of Doug Harris's Book, Charter School City

It's been a long journey, but here te indispensable Mercedes Schneider finally publishes her full review of Harris's book about New Orleans and its charter conversion. In the process, she provides some useful on-the-ground insights into the gutting of public education in NOLA

Who's assessing the assessment?

At the Kappan, a detailed look at just how very bad edTPA really is, and how Pearson fights back, again, against any criticism.

Instead of surveillance, try an ethic of care

John Warner at Inside Higher Ed looks at student surveillance and sees a better way, including radical notions like "an easy way to judge whether or not something violates an ethic of care for students is whether or not I would agree to be subjected to the same requirement as a condition of doing my work."

Schools face a substitute teacher crisis

NBC news picked up this piece from Hechinger Report which is somehow mystified that terrible pay and conditions have exacerbated the long-stewing sub crisis. A little infuriating, but still worth the read.

England's catch-up tutors ae being short-changed by private employers

Somebody's making a bunch of money from the covid make-up tutoring business in England, but it's not the teachers who are doing the actual work.

New Morehouse College Program Encourages Black men to complete unfinished degrees

From NPR, a good idea being developed.

Representative Jamaal Bowman educating an uninformed mom on BLM won late night

It has been pretty damn cool to see teacher Bowman make his mark in DC, and this week he also appeared on Stephen Colbert's show, winning the attention of the folks at Vulture. 


  1. How about a permanent federal tax credit ($5K) awarded to black teachers who work in any Title 1 school.

  2. I’m disappointed in Biden on a lot of accounts. So much same old, same old. Obstinately insisting on the Neera Tanden nomination when she’s a terrible nominee in all ways; the only thing special about her is that she’s a Clintonite and for that reason deserves a plum position. Bombing Syria; all American Presidents have to bomb a Muslim country within the first month of their term to show Israel we’ll do their bidding. And now Democrats want to bring back earmarks, which reeks of swamp when people are so sick of corruption. No matter how you do it, it’s unfair to give a few people special favors to get their vote. But the worst thing is Biden not fighting for $15 minimum wage; in fact, he seemed to not want it to pass. He said several times he didn’t think it would pass. The parliamentarian had the CBO report for weeks, but only ruled – against it - after Biden said Harris wouldn’t overrule her. It was like it was a signal. It made no sense to approve tax cuts for the rich with reconciliation but not $15 for ordinary people. The Democratic party establishment is so stupid, because if we don’t get $15 minimum wage, a robust public option, a green infrastructure bill, and police reform passed by midterms, Democrats are going to do terrible at the polls even if the Republican party is imploding. It has to be the tactic of WWMD – What Would Mitch Do.