"The whole people must take upon themselves the education of the whole people and be willing to bear the expenses of it. There should not be a district of one mile square, without a school in it, not founded by a charitable individual, but maintained at the public expense of the people themselves." -- John Adams

"No money shall be drawn from the treasury, for the benefit of any religious or theological institution." -- Indiana Constitution Article 1, Section 6.

"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilisation, it expects what never was and never will be...nor can they be safe with them without information. Where the press is free and every man able to read, all is safe." – Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Inconvenient question #1

From A Place to Respond

Waiting List: Question #1

the beginning of my list of inconvenient questions for our nation's politicians

An oppressive regime of standardized testing has been imposed upon our nation's public schools as well as the very dubious practice of judging the quality of teaching and learning based almost solely on these test scores.

The following question is for the presidential candidates who support vouchers for public school students to attend private schools.

What is the justification for spending public money on vouchers for students to attend private schools when the private schools are exempt from the very tests being used to "prove" that our public schools are failing?

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Read the Declaration of Independence From High Stakes Testing


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No Child Left Behind is leaving thousands of children behind!
Dismantle NCLB!
Sign the petition by clicking HERE.
More than 32,000 signatures so far...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Serious Topics in Education

I'm on our teachers' association team which meets with the administration once a month to discuss issues of importance to the school system. I've been on the team for quite a few years...6 or 7 at least...and I've always felt that we've helped solve some problems and have improved the school environment for our students and teachers.

This year, however, a new crisis has arisen which threatens to undermine the educational process and cause chaos and disunity for years. I refer, of course, to the declaration by the administration that denim not be worn to school by teachers.

According to the administration, denim is unprofessional in any form and presents teachers in a bad light when we are visited by outsiders. Denim is casual and we must be formal. Denim is cheap and we must show that we use our money wisely by buying high quality, non-denim clothing. Denim is low class and we are high-falutin'. It's clear that there must be solid research surrounding this issue. Our administration is data centered. Nothing happens in the school system without a good, solid, research based reason. It must be true that teachers who wear denim are not as effective as teachers who do not.

Therefore, no more jeans, and no more denim jackets or skirts. The elimination of denim from the wardrobe of teachers will have a positive impact on the education of children. No longer will children be taught by people who have the poor fashion sense to choose a fabric representative of the lower classes. Test scores will improve because teachers will be wearing clothes which assure the public of their professionalism.

Would you want your doctor treating you without his or her lab coat on? If you were in an accident, wouldn't you want the EMT at the scene to have his or her uniform on in order to receive the best possible care? Would you get on a bus, subway, train, or other form of public transportation without first checking to make sure that the driver is wearing his or her official transit system uniform?

Thank goodness we have administrators who are familiar with the latest trends and issues in education. The damage caused by a denim-laden teaching staff would take years to undo. Luckily the problem has been addressed and corrected. Our children are safe once again.

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Read the Declaration of Independence From High Stakes Testing


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No Child Left Behind is leaving thousands of children behind!
Dismantle NCLB!
Sign the petition by clicking on the link on the side.
Nearly 32,000 signatures so far...