Category: Education

Getty Images; David McGlynn

The Educational Malpractice of Ms. Moskowitz

Elizabeth Green, the founder of “Chalkbeat,” an online education site, is out with a fawning, sycophantic puff piece on Eva Moskowitz, the leader of the Success Academy network of charter schools in New York City. Some of my favorite edubloggers have already responded with their thoughts (Peter Greene, aka Curmudgication; Mercedes Schneider here), so I’ll make my comments on this […]

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Secretary Betsy DeVos at CPAC 2017 Feburary 23rd 2017 by Michael Vadon

Betsy DeVos Sure Gets Confused Easily

Remember when U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos scrapped the Obama administration’s guidelines on campus sexual assault because they were “confusing“? Remember how some Very Serious People, even liberals, praised this as a good-faith effort? (Some folks seem to believe that there’s an epidemic of really good guys being falsely accused of rape and this is the worst thing in the […]

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Betsy DeVos thinks schools are like food trucks: here’s why she’s wrong

Betsy DeVos thinks schools are like food trucks: here’s why she’s wrong

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos made headlines this week at Harvard University. I’m still confused as to why Harvard invited her to speak at an event allegedly focused on public education–she never attended a public school, never sent her own children to a public school, never studied education, and has never taught anyone anything–and the reaction to her talk suggests […]

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James O’Keefe’s group busted infiltrating school union in Michigan to set up fake sting, judge issues restraining order

James O’Keefe’s group busted infiltrating school union in Michigan to set up fake sting, judge issues restraining order

James O’Keefe, the “film” producer who spends his life trying to take down any organization valued by progressives with heavily-edited videos of “stings” he orchestrates has been spending time in Michigan this year trying to bring down the American Federation of Teachers. Fortunately, a combination of an O’Keefe operative’s stupidity and the intelligence of the AFT’s staff resulted O’Keefe’s crew […]

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New poll shows parents want better support and funding for public education & teachers, not more “choice”

New poll shows parents want better support and funding for public education & teachers, not more “choice”

The bad news is that Betsy DeVos and her corporate pals are spending incredible amounts of money to convince parents that public schools are “failing”. The good news is that it’s not working. A new poll out this week shows that, despite efforts by corporatists like Sec. of Education Betsy DeVos and others to push for-profit charter schools under the […]

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Zombie Education Reform Strategy #459

Zombie Education Reform Strategy #459

To save you from having to read this claptrap, I’m going to share the gist of a new “report” on teacher preparation programs from David Bergeron & Michael Dannenberg. Who the heck are these guys, you might ask? Well, our friend and Highly Effective Curmudgeon, Peter Greene, fills us in on their “credentials,” and it’s pretty much what we expected–they […]

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The predictable result of demonizing teachers: Detroit schools face massive teacher shortage

The predictable result of demonizing teachers: Detroit schools face massive teacher shortage

If you’ve been watching the ever-increasing demonization of teachers in Michigan over the past decade, you probably have asked yourself at one time or another, “Why the hell would ANYONE want to be a teacher in Michigan?” It’s a fair question. Republicans in our state legislature have cut their benefits, based their advancement on student progress when much of what […]

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Want to improve Michigan’s schools? Ask teachers, not Gov. Snyder

A jointly-authored article from Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and State Superintendent of Schools Brian Whiston appeared recently in The Detroit News. The article was supposed to be a defense of the state’s school reform agenda–which has been, shall we say…underwhelming…in terms of actually…you know…uh…reforming our state’s schools. The overarching theme of the article, such as it was, was that greater […]

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Who suffers when charter schools fail? (HINT: It’s not the banks or the authorizers)

Who suffers when charter schools fail? (HINT: It’s not the banks or the authorizers)

It’s becoming an all too familiar news story in Michigan these days: A “failing” public school system faces “competition” from a charter school that sucks even more resources and students away from the traditional schools and then, when they can’t make enough money, the charter school closes and things are worse off than they were before. For example, it happened […]

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University of Michigan addresses skyrocketing tuition costs with free tuition for families making under $65K a year

University of Michigan addresses skyrocketing tuition costs with free tuition for families making under $65K a year

It’s no secret that the soaring cost of higher education has ensured that many students simply cannot afford to go to a major university. And while there’s no shame in going to a community college or not going to college at all, a university degree opens doors and provides opportunities that community colleges and other paths simply do not. This […]

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Some unpopular thoughts on teacher evaluation

Some unpopular thoughts on teacher evaluation

I’ve been working on teacher evaluation for most of my career as a teacher, administrator, and teacher educator; first being evaluated, then doing the evaluation as an assistant principal and subject area coordinator, then helping design a state-wide beginning teacher evaluation initiative. After nearly 40 years in education, all I can say is that the current system is the worst […]

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