• OK for other people’s children but not our own? Really? Yes, really scary!

    Silicon Valley --where so much technology, which we now realize can be very addictive, is created, is often for other people's children. Many parents in SV don't allow their OWN to use it, or very much limit their children's use, and choose schools (private, of course), where technology is not used--even as they keep on selling this stuff to public schools across the US. In fact, more low-tech private schools are popping but, even as tech sales to public schools for other people's [...]
  • NAEP and Lake Wobegon. Really?

    Thank you, Diane, for posting and James Harvey of the Superintendents' Roundtable, for reminding us. We don't live in Lake Wobegon where all kids are above average. Honestly, can all kids will be proficient? https://dianeravitch.net/2018/04/10/james-harvey-dont-be-fooled-by-naep-proficient/ Raising false expectations leads to a loss of trust in our schools. Remember 2014 when the NCLB mandated (?) that all kids were to be proficient. How did that work out for us?
  • Teaching little children BEFORE they fall behind… another reason to be an optimist!

    https://edsource.org/2018/facing-unprepared-kindergartners-a-rural-school-district-restores-preschool-for-all/595667?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email Wonderful story. PBS--proficiency-based schools--is the way forward, as I see it. Let's help kids BEFORE they fall behind. Let's get them ready for kindergarten. Here's a story about early childhood programs in California's Lindsay Unified School District. While it's certainly a step in the right direction, I also believe in [...]
  • Read this and weep–another example of “reforms” that lead us astray…

    When will they (we) ever learn? http://www.aei.org/publication/dc-graduation-scandal-shows-how-an-uncritical-gaze-leads-reformers-astray/ And see comments, especially by John Merrow pointing to the many times he raised red flags that went unheeded. I worry that the next "reform" bubble that will eventually burst, after it damages our schools and students, is the push to put a lap top in front of every little child in the name of "personalized instruction" and 21st century [...]
  • Just published on MEDIUM! Why I’m an optimist about fixing special ed.

    https://medium.com/@miriamkfreedman/why-i-am-an-optimist-about-fixing-special-education-4c3a09cccae In the piece, I write that when the public learns what's really going on in our schools--step by step--and when they've finally had enough--change will happen--and happen fast! The article lays out several areas of deep concern and sketches three broad solutions. Please feel free to share and repost this piece. The more the better!
  • Bring back Frankenstein! Great Jamie Gass op-ed, picked up by Diane Ravitch!

    An unlikely pair--Jamie and Diane. Thanks for the pickup, Diane. They agree that we need to bring back real literature for our children. The Common Core's "Informational texts" are a poor substitute. They do and have already led to declines in student achievement--the dumbing down of America. Bring back Frankenstein! https://dianeravitch.net/2018/03/15/jamie-gass-frankenstein-lost-to-common-core/ Thanks you Jamie and Diane!
  • Cry the beloved country

    Alan Patton wrote a novel, Cry the Beloved Country about South Africa in 1948. Today I cry for our country because it is filled with hatred, vitriol, and voices that do not hear (and have no interest to hear) each other. Where does this all go? In this article, we're talking about schools--the one public connector we have always had. I listened to the 60 Minutes Leslie Stahl interview of Betsy Devos--in disappointment, both for the questions and answers. The questions were [...]
  • Read it! A wonderful paper… about transforming US education

    https://education-reimagined.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/A-Transformational-Vision-for-Education-in-the-US-2015-09.pdfI Read it and pass it on! I loved this paper! I loved the idea that a group of people from diverse background --all around the country, schools, businesses, teachers, and foundations-- are getting together to give their best ideas for reimagining our schools. It's an easy wonderful read--even though it got a into the weeds a little in the 10 pages of text. It's [...]
  • The Washington DC graduation fiasco ….

    On Tue, Feb 13, 2018 at 8:01 AM, John Merrow wrote: Friends, The emperor has no clothes, and I believe it's high time that everyone acknowledged that. Proof positive is Washington, DC, long the favorite of the 'school reform' crowd, which offered it as evidence that test-based reforms that rewarded teachers for high student scores (and fired those with low scores) was the magic bullet for turning around troubled urban school districts. But now we know that about one-third of recent [...]
  • Tech addiction: Schools buying tech companies’ “research” is a problem for us all.

    Here are my thoughts in response to this excellent Education Week piece by Matt Miles. https://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2018/02/07/tech-companies-are-buying-their-own-education.html?cmp=eml-enl-eu-news2&M=58376112&U=1500758#comments Thank you, Matt, for this vital piece. It's about time! As a teacher, you clearly set out the downsides of tech addiction, research funded by technology that drives efforts for 1:1 technology, so-called "personalized instruction," and other efforts. [...]