Newark students – heroes in spite of being deprived of books and food

Support Newark studentsThe Student Heroes of Newark is a phrase coined by Daniel Katz in a Huffington Post article on how Newark, New Jersey students are handling the challenges of being starved by the Christie Administration and Cami Anderson, Newark Schools superintendent for classroom books and even food.

One student explains that there may be four textbooks in a classroom of over 30 children. Another, that there isn’t enough food in the cafeteria for both lunch and breakfast: if the staff serve one meal, they run out of food for the other. Take a look for yourself at this 3 minute video – these young people are powerful advocates and know how to tell their story. read more

Book: Reign of Error by Diane Ravitch

Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America’s Public Schools by Diane Ravitch
Category: Social Justice, Education
Diane Ravitch & Reign of Error
In the days that Diane Ravitch was U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education in the administration of George H. W. Bush, she drank lots of Kool Aide and believed strenuously that destroying public education was good for students of color and poor kids. But one day the veil was lifted from her eyes. She understood the error of her previous thinking, and did a complete about face to become the country’s most visible and high-profile champion of public education. I’m a Diane fan and now, you can be too! Read her book and her blog. read more

Twins prove student performance no good for assessing teachers

Mother Crusader tells why she knows that student performance – as demonstrated by standardized testing – can never be accurately used to determine how good a teacher is: her twin children have been with the same teachers since pre-K and their student performance is radically different. Mother Crusader recommends that parents opt their children out of standardized testing, and cautions that in New Jersey it will be used against teachers beginning next year:

And here is a GREAT reason why to opt your kids out. One of the “high stakes” attached to state tests is teacher accountability. These tests are NOT designed to evaluate teacher performance, yet that is EXACTLY what they will be used for. read more