I couldn’t participate in yesterday’s Teacher Town Hall for NBC’s Education Nation, and I blame Blighter for it.
The Ozymandia blogger and my good friend was married on Saturday, and let’s just say I enjoyed myself a little too much to be involved in any serious discussion on education issues.
Yesterday, at NBC’s Education Nation Summit at Rockefeller Center, featured special Meet the Press panel, a panel discussion about the upcoming school reform documentary Waiting for Superman, as well as the Teacher Town Hall I missed. They’re both linked below, but some things of note:
- Randi Weingarten needed some real coaching in that discussion. It’s amazing, and downright insulting, that we send a non-teacher up to defend one of the oldest professions in civilization. You can’t go up against Canada and Rhee, the education golden-children, looking like a shrill Teamster’s wife on the picket line.
- Geoffrey Canada, Harlem education entrepreneur, has enjoyed enormous success, which should be applauded. But how many of us have the financial resources he has to do the outside-the-box stuff that works in his situation?
- Michelle Rhee comes off as a complete whiner and a bad loser. She whines about lawsuits, AFT support of her boss’ opponent in the DC mayors’ race, the fact that a democratic government hamstrings her efforts. C’mon…cowboy up and face reality: you had the White House, the US Department of Education and the reform movement behind you. Don’t whine about losing an election: those are the breaks. Man up and deal.
- In a part of the Teacher Town Hall, where a teacher (young, maybe TFA?) gets up and says teachers “should be under attack…we should be held accountable…you’re not in this for the money”, she just sounds like a TFA shill. Furthermore, she should face political and economic reality. You will NEVER attract the best teachers with salaries not commensurate with other professions, nor will you attract them with the flimsy education requirements of graduate schools.
- The fact that teacher/bloggers such as Deven Black, Ira Socol, Sabrina and yours truly–teacher/journalists that not only stick their neck out on education “reform”, but also teach as well–were so underrepresented boggles the mind. Not to toot my own horn, of course.
Below are the links to each of these pieces, so take a look for yourselves, and be as liberal as you want with your opinions:
MSNBC “Waiting for Superman” Panel discussion
Part II of “Superman” Panel discussion
Part III of “Superman” Panel discussion
Part IV of “Superman” Panel discussion
Part V of “Superman” Panel discussion
MSNBC Teacher Town Hall: “Are teachers under attack?”
Reminder to RSVP/Register for Save Our Schools March in DC July 28-31
Image via Wikipedia
Those more observant members of the Neighborhood may have noticed a large new yellow button to the right. Its funny-looking, I know, but its there for an important reason.
The Save Our Schools March and National Call to Action will be coming up at the end of July. The conference covers July 28-29 and 31 and feature many well-known speakers on education like Diane Ravitch, Jonathan Kozol, Valerie Strauss from the Washington Post, our good friend Sabrina Stevens Shupe and many others. The workshops offer activism techniques, curriculum strategies and other useful tools in advocacy in education.
The march will take place July 30, where we will meet at the Ellipse on the Mall at noon, followed by a march to the Department of Education at 2 pm. It should be a raucous time, especially in that roasting DC heat of late July–of which I am painfully familiar.
Of course, besides the obvious reasons involving educational fairness, true accountability and general saving of the public school system, you should be heading to DC that weekend to meet me! I’ll be at a bloggers’ event the evening of the 29th, where we’ll watch The Inconvenient Truth Behind Waiting for Superman (hopefully in Rocky Horror mode). Also, I’ll be at the march myself, and hopefully gathering a cadre of the Neighborhood to march along.
I’ll be easy to spot in my Hawaiian shirt and straw hat 🙂
The conference costs $80 to register for Thursday’s and Friday’s events. But make sure to register before June 15th, otherwise the price jumps to $100 a head. Click here for registration info.
The march is free…bring as many people as you want! However, it’s nice if we have a head count of how many people are coming. Its no obligation to go, but even if you plan on coming please RSVP here.
Remember, the other guys like to fudge numbers–we want to be honest.
Lastly, if you plan on going and would like to join me as a contingent of the Neighborhood, especially for social studies advocacy, please e-mail me so we can coordinate a meeting spot. The Ellipse is big, so plan on being there around 10 am so we can meet, greet and get our chanting voices ready.
Hope to see you all there.
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Tagged as American History, Barack Obama, Call to Action, Civil Rights, Comedy, Commentary, Communications, Department of Education, Diane Ravitch, Education, Education advocacy, Education protest, education reform, Educational leadership, Humor, Humour, Jonathan Kozol, Leadership, Media, Opinion, Social studies, Standards, State school, Teachers, Teaching, Travel, U.S. History, United States, Waiting for Superman, Washington DC, Washington Post