Latest posts from Houston

Nov 12 2013

My review of ‘Test and Punish’

If ‘Reign of Error’ were to meet ‘The DaVinci Code’ the result would John Kuhn’s ‘Test-and-Punish: How the Texas Education Model Gave America Accountability Without Equity’.   Kuhn is the superintendent of the Perrin-Whitt school district in Texas.  I first learned of him when I marveled at his show-stealing speech at the Save Our Schools rally…

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I am a member of two worlds. The teacher world and the non-teacher world. In teacher world, for the most part, faith in students is taken for granted. I am told, student actions come from teacher actions. Student mindsets come from teacher mindsets. To what extent I truly, deeply believe this is for another post.…

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Nov 09 2013

November blues.

I’ll be honest – I’ve been really struggling, this first week of November. I think I am finally hitting Teacher October but just one month delayed. My kids came off a week of review and a week of testing so it’s been hard for everyone to get back into the swing of actual learning &…

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Nov 09 2013

The lack-of-wit and lack-of-wisdom of Arne Duncan

I became aware of Arne Duncan when I sat and watched his keynote address at the Teach For America 20 year alumni summit on February 13th 2011.  In that speech he made a claim about how he helped turn around a school in Chicago by firing the teachers and turning it into a charter school. …

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Nov 09 2013

Will TNTP demand accountability from itself?

The New Teacher Project (TNTP) was a spin-off of TFA and originally led by Michelle Rhee.  Having worked as a trainer for both organizations, I generally liked working for TNTP more than TFA.  I found the TNTP trainees to be more mature and more committed to education as many of them were ‘career changers’ and…

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Nov 08 2013

On the latest D.C. NAEP Miracle

Today the results from the 2013 NAEP came out, and ‘reformers’ everywhere are celebrating the amazing gains by states with an aggressive reform agenda.  In 2011, the average national score for the four main NAEP tests (4th grade reading, 4th grade math, 8th grade reading, and 8th grade math) was about a 250, with the…

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Nov 06 2013

New TFA Miracle Claims

Today TFA released their annual letter.  Looking at the announcement of the letter on their website, I saw this image, which shows all the aspects of TFA’s influence, though, to me, it looks a lot like what you see on the wall of a police department as they are investigating a crime and hanging up…

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Nov 06 2013

Closing (The Achievement Gap) Bad

So if you’re wondering why I’ve slowed down a bit on blogging lately, there are a bunch of reasons.  One is that I’m happy about the amount of coverage phony ed reform is getting by not just other bloggers, but even in the main stream media.  A lot of my blogging stems from the feeling…

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This was said by a student today, as we delved right into the heart of one of this unit’s Essential Questions. What does it mean to grow up? What happens if/when you realize your views are different from those of your parents? Can you grow and stay the same at the same time?  To start…

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Oct 29 2013

test[ed]

Knee-deep in a full week of testing, I am grateful that my kids finished their English exams today, meaning the pressure has been taken off (for the rest of this week at least). We got our preliminary scores back already. Both my co-planner and I beat the district average for the multiple choice section –…

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