October 2012 • Volume 16 • Number 2 • Page 48
Amusing, interesting, and provocative comments from the field of middle level education
"Every teaching year undulates in the moments that make them unique, but every teacher's first year is the foundation upon which we build ourselves forever after."
— Middle grades math teacher and coach Jose Vilson. "The Homeroom Is a Home," MiddleWeb SmartBrief, July 4, 2012.
"If we continue eliminating the carefully crafted skills that make education and teaching complicated professions, putting certain skills into the electronic hands of computers and software, then all classroom teachers simply become interchangeable parts in the educational process."
— Teacher educator Shaun Johnson. "Let's Get to the Bottom of #Edtech Hysteria," The Huffington Post, July 27, 2012.
"If there's ever a real winner in the international education competition, it will be the country whose education policymakers see the applicability to education of the ancient story of the blind men and the elephant. That country won't be the United States. The super-hyped Common Core Standards, created by subject-matter specialists who don't talk to each other about the whole
of which their specializations are parts, will see to that."
— Marion Brady, educator and author. "Education's Biggest Design Flaw," The Washington Post, July 29, 2012.
"We want more girls engaged in robotics and computer programming and physics and engineering. We want more boys engaged in poetry and creative writing and Spanish language."
— Leonard Sax, the founder of the Pennsylvania-based National Association for Single Sex Public Education. "More Public Schools Splitting Up Boys, Girls," USA Today, July 8, 2012.
[Single-sex classes] isn't the right step to address higher dropout rates by boys. They promote false stereotypes about sex-based differences that don't exist. Promoting sex stereotypes can harm both girls and boys."
— Doug Bonney, legal director of the ACLU of Kansas and Western Missouri, where he successfully challenged single-sex classes in Missouri's Adrian R-III School District. He argues that single-sex classrooms may actually enhance gender stereotypes and lead to sexism. "More Public Schools Splitting Up Boys, Girls," USA Today, July 8, 2012.
"We don't want to know if you can pass multiple-choice tests. We want to know if you can drive."
— Stephanie Wood-Garnett, an assistant commissioner in the New York State Education Department's office of higher education. "To Earn Classroom Certification, More Teaching and Less Testing," The New York Times, July 29 2012.
"Seen initially as crucial supports designed to structure the work of struggling teachers, day-by-day pacing guides — like running shoes — have become the norm rather than the exception in education. As a result, we've become an ‘injury-prone' profession because we've forgotten to rely on our greatest strength: The minds of our classroom teachers."
— Education Blogger Bill Ferriter. "Don't Teachers Atrophy Too?" Smart Blog on Education, July 19, 2012.
"When a teacher takes the time to reflect on his or her own practice and works to provide interventions for struggling students, he or she is no longer predicting or summarizing learning; he or she is actively working to ensure that all students learn."
— Trenton Goble, chief academic officer of MasteryConnect. "It Takes More Than a Minute to Win It," Rick Hess's Straight Up blog, Education Week, July 18, 2012.
"Almost everyone appreciates at a gut level that what happens in the regular teacher's absence is not often something to brag about. It's kind of an underbelly, one of the darker secrets of what happens in public education."
— Raegan T. Miller, associate director for education research at the Center for American Progress. "Educators Take Another Look at Substitutes," Education Week, July 18, 2012.
Copyright © 2012 Assocation for Middle Level Education