Archive for the ‘Opinion’ Category

  • Why NYC Students Seeing ‘Hamilton’ Is a Big Deal

    on Nov 17, 15 • in Current Events in Education, Featured, Fine Arts, From the Front Lines, High School, Opinion, social justice, Social Justice • with Comments


    On October 27th, a joint collaboration of The Rockefeller Foundation, The Gilder Lehrman Foundation, producer Jeffrey Seller, creator (and star) Lin-Manuel Miranda, and New York City public schools announced that they will provide a means for more than 20,000 eleventh graders to not just watch Hamilton, the hottest, most ground-breaking musical in decades – but to actually go backstage and interact with the cast after their Wednesday matinee. The show, whose average ticket price is $139 (and sold out almost entirely to the public through September) agreed to lower their ticket prices to $70, of which the foundations

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  • 15 Things My Newborn Son Taught Me About Education

    on Nov 13, 15 • in Educator Professionalism, Featured, Opinion • with Comments

    Blending (2)

    On November 1st at 11:05p, Jonah, my newborn son, entered the world, joining my wife and me. While I’ve taught nearly 1,500 students in my 10 years of education, I hadn’t learned as much from one until I had after staying home with my new found family. Here are a dozen things he’s taught my wife and me that could be applied to kids of all ages: 1 – Make an assessment of life’s priorities. Before I had this young man in my life, I thought about having a cleared inbox, the best lesson plans, and top-notch parental contact

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  • Zero Tolerance For Zero Tolerance

    on Nov 9, 15 • in Current Events in Education, Educational Reform, Featured, Opinion, Policy, School Improvement, social justice • with Comments

    Zero Tolerance For Zero Tolerance

    As Russell J. Skiba points out in his research on zero-tolerance policies, it’s quite difficult to find the “moment” when our schools implemented zero-tolerance policies in our school, but we can trace the impact of them to the 1994 Free Schools Act as a time when districts were quick to suspend students for fear of losing federal funds. And now it’s time we suspend zero tolerance. The American Psychologist, Dr. Paul Mattiuzzi, Educational Research Magazine, Randi Weingarten of the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association, notable newspapers like the Baltimore Sun, the American Bar Association,

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  • Police, Black Students, and Teachers

    on Nov 6, 15 • in Current Events in Education, Educator Professionalism, Featured, Opinion, Social Justice • with Comments

    black students

    I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched the video clip of Ben Fields, Richland County (SC) school resource officer, where he picked up a young lady (who was black) and pulled her from her chair. I’ve done so because it astounds me that this situation occurred in our schools, but what also stuns me is how easily everybody has their minds made up about a seemingly simple issue with complex undertones. Rushing to a decision – and the complete generalizations that have followed – shouldn’t be that easy. On one hand, black rights advocates have returned,

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  • Things Teachers Are Saying Wrong, and How to Correct Them

    on Nov 2, 15 • in Educator Professionalism, Featured, Instruction&Curriculum, Opinion • with Comments

    Increasing Student Engagement through Belongingness and Cognitive Rigor-2

    The insistence on vocabulary in education is a time-tested tradition of teachers. However, as curriculum changes and adapts, so does our subject-specific student vocabulary. That said, why hasn’t teacher vocabulary altered and upgraded throughout the years? Let’s look at a few things teachers say, what we should begin saying instead, and why… 1 – Start saying learn about, instead of get through The idea for this article came when I observed a colleague talking about a specific lesson that I loved in school. This teacher said “well, we just need to get through ____, and then…” I’m

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