Monthly Archives: August 2012

Out of the mouths of babes

In the last few weeks I’ve noticed a rise in the ‘student voice’ around education and ed reform.  First I had read about StudentsFirst and a student chapter at Cornell, the alma mater of both Michelle Rhee and Randi Weingarten.  … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 15 Comments

What do TFA, KIPP, and Lance Armstrong have in common?

Answer:  They have all been recently caught in huge lies. Last week I wrote a blog post about a Reuters article in which a high level TFA staffer admitted that one of their statistics about the effectiveness of the first … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 9 Comments

Is TFA a waste of money?

Yesterday a very significant article was published by Reuters and syndicated nationally called ‘Has Teach For America Betrayed Its Mission?’  For ‘anti-reformers’, like me (note I’m anti ‘reform’, not necessarily TFA.  If they would just sever their connection with the … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 17 Comments

Pass The Chalk Roundup #2

Since the last roundup, I’m happy to report that there is ‘a little’ more balance recently.  Not a lot.  Definitely not enough, but I will point out some things that I approve of in addition to some more criticism, of … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 12 Comments

Teachers (from TFA, at least) Rock (the rest need to be fired) Concert!

There’s a movie coming out this fall called ‘Won’t Back Down’ which the commercial says is “inspired by true events.”  The movie is about a parent who is unhappy with her child’s school and rallies the other parents plus half … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 6 Comments

Are you a timpanist or a violinist?

A full orchestra has over 100 musicians, each playing their parts to make their music. Some players, by virtue of their instrument, ‘stand out’ more than others.  An example would be the timpanist.  If the timpanist was missing, the piece … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 16 Comments

That’ll Learn ’em

There are certain pairs of verbs in the English language that by definition imply one another.  One example is ‘sell’ and ‘buy.’  If you sell something, someone else must be buying.  It would make no sense to say “I’m selling … Continue reading

Posted in Research | 2 Comments

How many things wrong with this first day?

Today I noticed this tweet from TFA: This struck me, instantly, as a very unwise thing to say in a first day of school pep talk.  The link took me to this post by a very good new blogger. Since … Continue reading

Posted in Teaching Advice | 39 Comments

The Danger Of Denying The Coleman Report

After 20 years in schools, it is completely obvious to me that schools are limited in their abilities to overcome every challenge that every child faces. Even in affluent schools, children are plagued by all kinds of out-of-school factors including … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 21 Comments

Pass The Chalk Roundup #1

A few weeks ago, TFA launched their own blog site called ‘pass the chalk.’  It was described as a way for the TFA community to express our diverse opinions on thought provoking topics. I wrote that I was skeptical that … Continue reading

Posted in Teach For America | 3 Comments