Glass Ceilings and Ivy Walls

Before we get started, I’d like you to picture university science professors in your head. Now, what did you see? Maybe they’re messy and disheveled, with unkempt hair and an untucked, wrinkled shirt. Perhaps they are more meticulous in appearance and have on a crisp, starched button-down with a pocket protector. Maybe they’re carrying the tools of their trade: a graphing calculator, a protractor, a clipboard full of data and equations.… [Read more]

Uncorking New Strategy for Funding Schools

Public education is a public good. This can’t be said often enough or stressed strongly enough. Like law enforcement and fire protection, public  schools are offered free of charge on an even-handed basis. But it’s the one public good no one wants to pay for. Instead we come up with one silly scheme after another as the savior for cash-starved schools.… [Read more]

Engaging your Child through Holisitic Education

In this fast-paced society of ours it is important for an individual to be able to perform well in many different aspects. Gone are the days where only excellent academic results and a high IQ are able to see you through your adulthood. Nowadays EQ (Emotional Quotient) matters more than IQ. One is expected  to have good  academic results, relate well to others, be hands on, physically fit and have an understanding and appreciation for the Arts.… [Read more]

In Praise of Public Educators

One could easily believe that our public school educators have a patron saint in the late comedic actor Rodney “No Respect” Dangerfield. We went from treating our trained and dedicated educational professionals as a respected calling involving “starving with dignity,” to tagging them as a gaggle of greedy, selfish, and coddled public dollar freeloaders who allegedly weren’t perfect surrogate parent nannies.… [Read more]

A Public Teacher’s Thoughts on Homeschooling

Let me start by saying that I very much support those who choose to homeschool their children. I have friends who homeschool and they do such outstanding things, sometimes I secretly wish my boys could be homeschooled…by them!

That being said, I always find it interesting to talk to people who homeschool. I am just interested, especially as a public school teacher, why they choose to homeschool.… [Read more]

The Future of Education

In the future it is possible we will no longer be educated by human beings. As technology progresses, computers will surpass our capabilities of instruction and logical analysis, thereby offering a sentience possibly beyond our control; science estimates within 100 years this will occur.  This means that computers, not humans, could be those in the best position to teach.… [Read more]

Obama: On Education, Is The President Liberals’ Piñata?

While the rest of us offered thanks for family and friends on Thanksgiving, one D.C. teacher told a colleague, “I am thankful Obama won, now I can go back to hating him for what he’s doing to public education.” You mean like pumping almost $100 billion in new funds into federal education programs and another $60 billion into saving teacher jobs?… [Read more]

Textbooks: The Bad, the Worse, the Politics

If you haven’t been keeping up, since President Obama’s re-election, Republicans have morphed into a bunch of embittered, whiny, cranky crybabies. Mitt Romney, blaming his loss on Obama “gifts” to special groups. Paul Ryan, blowing dog-whistle about the large turnout of the “urban vote.” And then there’s the pièce de résistance, Peter Morrison.

This little-known Tea Party wacknut in Texas is demanding “an ‘amicable divorce’ from…the ‘maggots’” who voted for Obama.… [Read more]

NASA’s Role In Space: Private vs. Public Space Exploration

NASA, or the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, costs taxpayers about half a penny annually. Allow reiteration of this statement to resonate: NASA costs you less than a penny every year in taxes. Evidence supports that Americans could easily be persuaded to dig deep and pay that extra half penny a year to aid in keeping such a visionary program operational.… [Read more]

Social Media and Education

I have been “on the internet” (if you count e-mail) since before most of my students were born.

(Side note: Holy Moses. How can that be true?? I am so youthful! Ahem.)

In college (late 90’s/early 00’s), I had my first website — a sample teaching site I created using DreamWeaver that I thought was amazing (it was not, and I never used it again).… [Read more]

Education “Reformers” and “Status Quo”: Timeout!

Democracy is messy, but this election season at times was downright filthy. The partisan pot-shots and polarization was most prevalent in social media – let he who hasn’t retweeted @LOLGOP cast the first stone – but the campaigns had their moments too.

In his victory speech Tuesday night, President Obama called for unity. He challenged us to put the rancor of the 2012 campaign behind us.… [Read more]

Gambling on Schools, Rolling Snake Eyes

Next week many voters will breathe a sigh of relief. The political ads that have saturated the airwaves, driving us all insane, will thankfully come to an end. Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, you have my sympathy. Maryland is solidly blue – far from a battleground state – but an epic battle is brewing over a question on the statewide ballot, sparking a $60 million ad war over casino gambling.… [Read more]

Up the Union

“Those who would destroy or further limit the rights of organized labor – Those who would cripple collective bargaining or prevent organization of the unorganized – do a disservice to the cause of democracy.” -J.F.K

I’ve been thinking a lot about all the union talk that this post and this post generated. My twitter stream erupted in smart (and some not so smart) discussion about teacher intent, motivation, attitude and rights as workers.… [Read more]

The Job of Teaching

Last week a student asked me, “Is teaching hard?”

My answer? Sometimes.

“What do you do?” she inquired.

I really didn’t have the time in class to explain it all (although I did invite the student to come check out my lesson plans and To Do list sometime), but  it made me think: I am not sure many people know what teachers “do” every day.… [Read more]

Campaigning on College Grads’ Prospects

If you’re a regular reader of this site you know that education is a frequent topic. Though the nation’s economy is slowly improving, its current state — fueled in large part by the unwillingness of some of our elected officials to boost job prospects — has, in part, resulted in greater competition for jobs available to debt-saddled graduates.… [Read more]

Politics Aside: I Am a Teacher

I know that by and large this is a website about politics and current event issues.

And I know that when I talk about education here it’s about policies and politics and all that jazz.

With the start of school being here, I suppose it’s expected that I have something to say about the whole thing.… [Read more]

Ryan Gets a Failing Grade in Education

Oh boy.

Here we go.

Instead of choosing someone to offset his conservative views, Romney chose someone who is totally as conservative as he is.

Also? It seems as if Paul Ryan would like to see public education privatized as much as the next rich white dude.

Get the rich richer and get rid of that pesky middle class, right?… [Read more]

Why Corporate Fraud Is So Rampant

There’s an interesting article on cnbc.com: Why Corporate Fraud Is So Rampant: Wall Street’s Cop by Preet Bharara, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

A quick recap of the article:

… To the apparent surprise of many in the room, I observed publicly that insider trading appeared to be rampant…. has permeated numerous industries, sectors, and geographical regions…… most educated, successful, and moneyed professionals in the country put their companies — not to mention their own liberty — at risk by engaging in flagrant and foolhardy illegal conduct…

The author then proposes solutions that are simply not going to work.… [Read more]

The Strains of Education

Nearly everyone says that it’s important to hold on to youth, because those are the best years of one’s life. But nowadays, life for teens isn’t as magical as many seem to think it is.

In addition to going through the painful transition from child to adult, teenagers face common hurdles such as drugs, alcohol, sex, peer pressure, and just as important: the burdens of education.… [Read more]

Oh, Canada…

Dear America,

I have a beef with you.

But let me back up.  During last week was Canada Day.

Of course as a 34-year old American I have no fricking clue what Canada Day is.  So what did I do?  I asked twitter, of course.

After I wished my Canadian tweeps a happy Canada Day first.… [Read more]