Showing posts from February, 2014

Your Kid Is Being Bullied - But Not in the Way You Think

    Are you defined by a test?  If you were born before 1985, chances are the answer is no.  If, on the other hand, you were born after that date you and your public education experience are data points on an administrator’s school or district or state data wall responding to the policies enacted by the No Child Left Untested law.  Notice I said public education.  In spite of the inanity in the name of accountability imposed upon students in public education, no such laws or requirements have been extended to the 7% of students, give or take a percentage point, in private or religious schools.       Let’s pause for a moment to listen for the outcry from the teachers, parents and politicians over the omission of that 7%  from the mandates and benefits of standardized testing and accountability…oh my...I can’t hear their poor, weak untested voices, can you?     Right now your child in public education, from kindergarten through their senior year, is being bullied.  Bullied by ac


This speech was originally given at the 2010 graduation ceremony for W.H. Shaw High School, and has been printed in several venues since that time.  I believe the information remains relevant and bears repetition. Graduates, parents, students, faculty, families, and honored guests – Welcome to our celebration of the culmination of the secondary school education of the Class of 2010 – the thirty second class to graduate from William Henry Shaw High School.  Parents, together we have gotten them through high school but after tonight they are yours – we will implement a strict no return policy.  I understand that several of you are offering a take one, get one free special at the end of tonight’s program. Seniors, I would like to introduce you to Tiger.  Tiger, as his name implies, is a small stuffed tiger that belongs to my grandson Justin.  Justin is 4, and Tiger goes everywhere Justin goes - to school, on visits, to naptime and especially to bed at night.  Justin finds co

Rotten to the Common Core

This article was originally published in the Fall 2012 edition of JOLLE - UGA by the author. Rotten to the (Common) Core     I must state from the outset that I am innately suspicious of the underlying motives or educational benefits of any initiative – Common Core included -  supported by the Governor that instituted austerity cuts in 2003, led Georgia to be one of the only states to use teacher furloughs to balance the state budget and consistently under funded public education in order to promote quality fishing.     Common Core is a standardized national curriculum.  Why is this problematic?  From an historical context, a centralized school curriculum serves the goals of totalitarian states.  It’s also illegal.  The General Education Provisions Act, the Department of Education Organization Act and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act all forbid or protect against the USDOE sticking its nose into the curriculum choices of state and local districts.  In spite of this,