AM News: USDE Updates Civil Rights Rules For Charters (What About Discriminatory Attendance Zones?)

Civil Rights Laws Apply Equally to Charters, Says USDE PK12: The "Dear Colleague" letter by Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon includes specific guidance for charter schools related to admissions, students with disabilities, English-language learners, and discipline.

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Michelle Obama Speech Plans Changed to Address Topeka Graduation Concerns

The first lady will instead speak at a “Senior Recognition Day.”

Plans to Have Michelle Obama Speak at Graduation Cause a Stir in Topeka

Plans to combine ceremonies for the city’s five high schools may mean fewer guests for each graduate, which some families have objected to.

Manufactured Controversies: How Non-Educator “Education Experts” Twist the Truth

There are times, as a teacher of biology, when I suffer what I call “math envy.”  See, none of my math teacher colleagues ever have to defend the fact that 2 + 2 = 4.  This is a well-established fact; …

In what other profession?

Teacher-bashing has become quite fashionable.  Basher-in-chief Michelle Rhee built her empire on of the practice, but the attitude spans all levels of fame and socioeconomic status.

Countless arguments used to denigrate public school teachers begin with the phrase “in what …

This Biology Teacher Has a Heavy-Metal Band– And It Taught Him About Teaching Kids

“So…you’re a music teacher?”  That’s common question I hear after my yearly performance at the Foundation Follies.  “No, not music – biology,” I reply.  Inevitably, my new acquaintance thinks I’m kidding.  After all, a science teacher would wear a button-up …

Are teachers “Making excuses and defending the status quo”?

Consider the following Google searches:

“Michelle Rhee and status quo” – About 133,000 results
“Bill Gates and status quo” – About 286,000 results
“Arne Duncan and status quo” – About 154,000 results

Substitute the word “excuses” for “status quo” and …

A Valentine to Public Education

Filmmaker Ken Burns subtitled his wonderful video love letter to our National Parks “America’s Best Idea.” Burns traced the history of National Parks, from genesis through a checkered history, as the plan for full public access to exquisite natural vistas …

RIF-Raff: Double-Talk, Hidden Agendas & the REAL Solution to the Teacher Layoff Debate

Much of today’s education reform debate is focused on reduction in force (RIF) or “layoffs.”  Most teaching contracts specify that RIF, when necessary, occurs based on seniority.  The logic of seniority-based RIF is that, by definition, RIF has nothing to …

Where’s MY Bonus? More Twisted Language From Ed “Reformers”

The language alchemists of education “reform” – the flingers of sanguine sardines – are at it again.

Just before Thanksgiving, roughly half of America’s public school teachers – the half who hold master’s degrees – might have thought they had …