Author: Mitchell Robinson

Predictions for the Pittsburgh Public Education Forum 2020

Predictions for the Pittsburgh Public Education Forum 2020

Given that education consistently ranks among the top issues for voters in most public opinion polls, with the vast majority (82%) of parents of school-aged children reporting that they are either “somewhat” or “completely satisfied” with their child’s education, one could be forgiven for being flummoxed by the near-absence of questions about teachers, schools, or education in general at any […]

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Graphic courtesy of: https://www.flickr.com/photos/myeye/3259810511/in/photostream/

A Note on “Bipartisanship” and Impeachment…

I keep hearing that this impeachment is “baseless” because it has not been a “bipartisan” process. Let’s be clear: Many, if not most of the “fact witnesses” who have testified were appointed by and have served Republican administrations, and although our intelligence community is ostensibly politically neutral, there has been an acknowledged conservative ideology apparent in the FBI and CIA […]

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Image from: https://www.flickr.com/photos/democracychronicles/15003219422

The Kids Are Alright…

Way back in September–which feels like 10 years when measured in teacher years–I shared my disappointment with my sophomore foundations class that so many of them no longer understood references to the classic teen coming of age movies of the 1980s, like “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” and “Fast Times at Ridgemont High.” Snippets from these films, like the ones below… […]

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Impeachment witnesses say they are “demoralized”; America’s teachers: “First time?”

Impeachment witnesses say they are “demoralized”; America’s teachers: “First time?”

As a career teacher, watching the House impeachment hearings has been a sort of “out of body experience.” Like the rest of America, I’ve witnessed a parade of brilliant, highly-educated, dedicated foreign service diplomats deliver eloquent, insightful testimony under the most pressure-packed circumstances they’ve ever experienced, and do so with grace, elegance, and professionalism. At the same time, reports have […]

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Attribution: Alpha Stock Images - http://alphastockimages.com/

Original Author: Nick Youngson - link to - http://www.nyphotographic.com/

When do “not-for-profit” and “for-profit” mean the same thing? Welcome to Michigan’s dystopian charter schools

Michigan, allegedly, does not permit for-profit charter schools. And yet one of the largest for-profit charter management corporations, National Heritage Academies (NHA), is headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan. And they take the “for profit” part seriously: NHA funds itself partly by charging its schools high rates. For example, the New York Daily News reported that NHA owned property in Brooklyn […]

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Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/donkeyhotey/47045117564

Michael Bennet had “a moment” at last night’s debate–that’s not good news for public education

Michael Bennet, US Senator from Colorado and presidential candidate, had what the pundits this morning are calling “a moment” at last night’s Democratic Debate on CNN. Let’s hope that moment ends immediately. Ironically enough, Bennet’s big moment came as he waxed poetic about “America’s public schools”, a topic that has received a depressingly minuscule amount of attention. Because while Bennet […]

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Courtesy of Allison Shelley/The Verbatim Agency for American Education: Images of Teachers and Students in Action.

Should all teachers be certified? Charter school leaders say no…

“I wouldn’t want to be the one that tells Gov. Jerry Brown that he can’t teach a government class because he would otherwise have to go back to college,” said Myrna Castrejón, president and CEO of the California Charter Schools Association. I would. Because Jerry Brown is in no way qualified, prepared, certified, or remotely capable of being a teacher. […]

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Betsy DeVos’ Zombie Voucher Schemes — the Unconstitutional, Undemocratic Tax Scams That Just Won’t Die

Betsy DeVos’ Zombie Voucher Schemes — the Unconstitutional, Undemocratic Tax Scams That Just Won’t Die

The week ended with yet another excellent article from Peter Greene​ in Forbes, this time on the dangers of “Tax Credit Scholarships”, one of Betsy DeVos major thrusts as Secretary of Education under Donald Trump. So, what are Tax Credit Scholarships? They are complicated financial mechanisms that allow businesses to divert their tax payments to fund specific private and religious […]

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Michigan All-State High School Orchestra (2010)

Michigan Shouldn’t Scrap Its Arts Requirement for High School Graduation

We are excited to share this guest post from Dr. Ryan Shaw, assistant professor of music education at Michigan State University. Dr. Shaw received his Ph.D. in Music Education from Michigan State University and earned master’s and bachelor’s degrees in music education from the University of Michigan. His scholarly interests include arts education policy and the ways that policy affects […]

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“Poor Betsy” doesn’t like being criticized…

“Poor Betsy” doesn’t like being criticized…

Secretary of Education and Disney villain Betsy DeVos spoke to a group of education writers in Baltimore the other day, and it appears her feelings are hurt. “I never imagined I’d be a focus of your coverage. I don’t enjoy the publicity that comes with my position. I don’t love being up on stage or on any kind of platform. […]

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Trump is Running the US Government Like a Charter School

Trump is Running the US Government Like a Charter School

For those of us following the news, each new day brings a bevy of unbelievable and shocking stories… Reports of Russian election meddling! A national emergency (that’s not a national emergency)! Cabinet secretaries wreaking havoc on the environment, education, and human rights! Kids in cages at the border! The Mueller Report! And in the middle of each of these stories? […]

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