Thursday, March 10, 2011

Post Mardi Gras catch-up

A few items we may have missed during the revelry...

Diane Ravitch: It all started with "No Child Left Behind." In this New York Times opinion piece, the feisty education historian traces the roots of the "campaign of vilification directed at our nation's more than three million teachers" to the passage of NCLB in 2002.

Ravitch persuasively argues that the act mandates an unreachable goal and effectively dooms all public schools to be labeled failures. And while the act was a product of the Bush administration, the Obama crowd "took the attacks on teachers to a new level" by holding "teachers alone accountable for student effort."

Shreveport Times: Union sticks up for battered teachers. The Caddo Federation of Teachers is up in arms after three middle school students were arrested after an on-campus rumble that resulted in a teacher being knocked to the ground.

Caddo Federation President Jackie Lansdale told The Times that the incident was just the tip of an iceberg, and that the administration does little to protect educators from student violence.

"They don't feel safe and they don't feel they have the administrative support to back them up," Lansdale said.

Obama warns against education budget cuts. Education Week carried this Associated Press story, in which President Barack Obama "characterized any reductions in money for education as irresponsible and harmful to the long-term health of the nation's economy."

The story notes that the president will go to bat for education this year, "linking educational excellence to jobs and private-sector competitiveness."

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