Students Love to Help, Part II

The best teachers lead classrooms not merely by teaching but by facilitating.  They not only create learning experiences; they also create circumstances for learning experiences to come about in various forms.  Even better, they create environments that sustain learning on their own. Or perhaps the phenomenon is not as spontaneous and magical as it sounds.  [...]

Chris Christie and School Rules: Making Things Sensible?

Originally published on Open Salon on April 5, 2011:            The Star Ledger reports today that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is creating a task force that will review state rules for school districts with the goal of eliminating forms of regulation that interfere with the efficient function of schools.  Reporters Ginger Gibson and Jeanette Rundquist [...]

Teachers, Unions, and Reasons to Reflect

Originally posted on Open Salon on March 3, 2011:            Any true education blog must, in this moment, provide commentary on public policy set at the state level and its impact on public education.  Let the highest profile examples and the obvious points come first: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is clearly targeting teachers.  He is attacking [...]

Teachers, Perceptions, and Distractions

Originally posted on Open Salon on January 18, 2011:              First, a word on how the public perceives teachers, particularly since the current economic crisis began to make its effects felt in late 2008.  In my home state of New Jersey, budget cuts at the state level have impacted schools profoundly, and a great debate has [...]

Education: Public Institutions, Human Interaction

Originally posted on Open Salon on December 29, 2010: There is no soft way to put it: public education today is under fire, and the top concerns are funds and accountability.  Each year hundreds of billions of dollars are spent on educating our nation’s children, and test results show that many students are not receiving [...]