Arthur Goldstein: The Sooner “Reform” Dies, the Better for Career Teachers

Reblogged from Diane Ravitch’s blog

Arthur Goldstein gives a close reading of Eliza Shapiro’s article about “why New York City is no longer the national leader of reform” in education.

When he read it, he felt heartened by the thought that “reform” was on the ropes, withering on the vine, falling apart, use whatever metaphor you want. Going, going, gone.

And yet he knows how demoralized the teachers in his building are.

He shows the error of Shapiro’s framing of the teacher tenure issue. “Reform” apparently means the utter elimination of any job rights for teachers. “Reformers” want to be able to fire any teacher at any time, without cause, just because they want to. Reformers agree that teachers should have no rights at all, and they wonder why there is a growing teacher shortage.

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Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?

Reblogged from The Atlantic by Jean M. Twenge

One day last summer, around noon, I called Athena, a 13-year-old who lives in Houston, Texas. She answered her phone—she’s had an iPhone since she was 11—sounding as if she’d just woken up. We chatted about her favorite songs and TV shows, and I asked her what she likes to do with her friends. “We go to the mall,” she said. “Do your parents drop you off?,” I asked, recalling my own middle-school days, in the 1980s, when I’d enjoy a few parent-free hours shopping with my friends. “No—I go with my family,” she replied. “We’ll go with my mom and brothers and walk a little behind them. I just have to tell my mom where we’re going. I have to check in every hour or every 30 minutes.”

Those mall trips are infrequent—about once a month. More often, Athena and her friends spend time together on their phones, unchaperoned.

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Member Savings on Dues – Rebate Offer

Reblogged from mea.org

Once again this year, we will repeat a popular $30 dues rebate that nearly 5,000 members took advantage of last year to save approximately $140,000.

Under the plan, a member who pays 2017-18 dues for the year in full by Oct. 31 (this date will be earlier in some LBL locals—you will be notified by your leadership if this is the case) and completes the necessary form, he or she will receive $30 in return. The $30 is not pro-rated—it is the same regardless of the amount of the member’s total dues. Full dues include complete Local, MEA and NEA dues.

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Fewer college students want to be teachers, and why it matters (searchable database)

Reblogged from Bridge

Empty desks in education classes

Nearly every teacher-prep program in Michigan is enrolling fewer students today than just a few years ago.

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Why Are Coding Bootcamps Going Out of Business?

Reblogged from Hack Education

Within the past week, two well-known and well-established coding bootcamps have announced they’ll be closing their doors: Dev Bootcamp, owned by Kaplan Inc., and The Iron Yard, owned by the Apollo Education Group (parent company of the University of Phoenix). Two closures might not make a trend… yet. But some industry observers have suggested we might see more “consolidation” in the coming months.

It appears that there are simply more coding bootcamps – almost 100 across the US and Canada – than there are students looking to learn to code. (That is to say, there are more coding bootcamps than there are people looking to pay, on average, $11,000 for 12 weeks of intensive training in a programming language or framework).

All this runs counter, of course, to the pervasive belief in a “skills gap” – that there aren’t enough qualified programmers to fill all the programming jobs out there, and that as such, folks looking for work should jump at the chance to pay for tuition at a bootcamp. Code.org and other industry groups have suggested that there are currently some 500,000 unfilled computing jobs, for example. But that number is more invention than reality, a statistic used to further a particular narrative about the failure of schools to offer adequate technical training. That 500,000 figure, incidentally, comes from a Bureau of Labor Statistics projection about the number of computing and IT jobs that will added to the US economy by 2024, not the number of jobs that are available – filled or unfilled – today.

Perhaps instead of “everyone should learn to code,” we should push for everyone to learn how to read the BLS jobs report.

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CNN: Why a Teacher in Oklahoma is Begging for Money on the Highway

Reblogged from Diane Ravitch’s blog

What’s wrong with this picture?

Teresa Danks has been teaching since 1996. She teaches first grade. She has a master’s degree.

Why is she standing by a busy road in Tulsa begging for money?

Watch the 54-second video.

Then send it to Bill Gates, The Walton Family Foundation, Eli Broad, Mark Zuckerberg or Priscilla Chan, Michael Bloomberg, or Betsy DeVos with your ideas about how to improve education.

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