Category: Children

Universal childcare isn’t only possible in the U.S., we’ve done it before

Universal childcare isn’t only possible in the U.S., we’ve done it before

As America emerges from the Dark Year of the COVID-19 pandemic, one thing is crystal clear: we have a childcare crisis in this country. While jobs are opening up nearly everywhere, employers struggle to find employees to fill their vacant positions. One reason is that the jobs people are being offered pay less than the ones they left due to […]

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Childcare is critical infrastructure and for families of color, it’s even MORE critical

Childcare is critical infrastructure and for families of color, it’s even MORE critical

The following essay was written by Krystle DuPree, a working mother and member of the Ann Arbor School Board. The views expressed here are hers and not those of the Ann Arbor School Board, her employer, or any other group. Enjoy. In March of 2020, the world as we knew it came to a grinding halt. Restaurants lowered their numbers […]

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If you want people to go back to work, child care IS infrastructure, especially during a global pandemic

If you want people to go back to work, child care IS infrastructure, especially during a global pandemic

The following essay was written by my good friend Caitlin Muciek-Balkus, a young mother from the mid-Michigan area. In it, she describes the difficult position parents are in right now as things open up after a year-long shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While I appreciate the strong desire of so many to get people back to work, I think […]

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We Told You…

We Told You…

The inestimable Ron French is out this week with a terrific article in Bridge on the exploding Covid crisis in Michigan’s schools, and the situation is indeed dire. Readers across the state must be wondering how we got here. “Kids don’t catch the virus!”, they said. “And if they do catch it, they don’t get sick!”, they said. Even if […]

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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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It’s not just Michigan: Betsy DeVos and the Koch brothers have immiserated teachers across the entire USA

It’s not just Michigan: Betsy DeVos and the Koch brothers have immiserated teachers across the entire USA

A couple of weeks ago, I published an essay titled Betsy DeVos and the Koch brothers must be so proud: Michigan teacher salaries down 16% from 2009. The title is pretty self-explanatory and the bottom line is that there is a very predictable (and predicted) teacher shortage in our state now because of how we have demonized, diminished, and demeaned […]

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Are we headed toward a “Civil War”…or are we already there?

Are we headed toward a “Civil War”…or are we already there?

A recent op-ed in USA Today by Glenn Harlan Reynolds asks the provocative question, “Is America headed toward a civil war?” As evidence, the author offers the following points, which seem deserving of a response. 1. Because of Sarah Sanders being refused service at a restaurant, Reynolds asserts, “I think we’re at the beginning of a soft civil war. … I don’t […]

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A Simple Solution to Fix the Problem of our Failing Public Education System

A Simple Solution to Fix the Problem of our Failing Public Education System

Let me begin with an apology: I have intentionally lured you here under false pretenses. What do I mean? I’ve used that favorite strategy of internet hoaxes and supermarket tabloids, the “click bait headline”, to catch your eye, whet your appetite, and influence you to “click” the link, which brought you here. According to Wikipedia, “click bait headlines” rely on […]

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Closing schools is not an educational option

Closing schools is not an educational option

The suggestion that the solution to poorly performing students is simply closing schools is merely following what has become a common trope in the corporate education reform community–the notion that “the problems” in education can be solved simply by, variously, “getting rid of the bad teachers“, converting public schools to charter schools, continuously raising standards, or increasing the amount of […]

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In Flint you can be a one-person grand jury: VOTE!!!

In Flint you can be a one-person grand jury: VOTE!!!

Before we get into the weeds, I believe most of the readers of Eclectablog are keenly aware of the disgrace Governor Rick Snyder and his administration have caused, not just to the state but very specifically to the residents of Flint, people who continue to suffer while the governor uses taxpayer funds to defend himself from what may prove to […]

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Evictions, Foreclosures, and Family Values

Evictions, Foreclosures, and Family Values

My county commissioner sent us a questionnaire soliciting input that would enable him to represent constituent views effectively. One question in particular nagged at me because it was more specific than all the others, had not appeared on any of the other dozens of political questionnaires I receive in a political season, and was not a topic du jour in […]

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