U.S. Public School Policies and Practices Support Open Borders

Arguably the most valuable words in the U.S. Constitution are found in the Fourteenth Amendment, often referred to collectively as the “Equal Protection Clause.” No state shall “deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” Since the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted in 1868, the Equal Protection Clause has been invoked … Continue reading U.S. Public School Policies and Practices Support Open Borders

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No, Gerry Brooks, It’s Not Funny When Educators Ridicule Parents

Gerry Brooks (pronounced like “Gary”) is an elementary school principal at Fayette County Public Schools in Lexington, Kentucky. Almost three years ago, Mr. Brooks uploaded his first YouTube video, and subsequently has added over 180 videos to his channel and has amassed over 102,500 subscribers. His most popular video to date, “First week of school … Continue reading No, Gerry Brooks, It’s Not Funny When Educators Ridicule Parents

A New Day (poem for #oklaed)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DFuzic841mU&feature=youtu.be Do you want to know what it’s like to be a teacher? It's like any other desk job really, minus the actual sitting at a desk. Seven hours of daily meetings arranged the previous evening You want to know what it’s like to be a teacher in Oklahoma? It’s the hardest job with (almost) … Continue reading A New Day (poem for #oklaed)

Rethinking Red Ribbon Week

Thousands of elementary, middle, and high schools across the nation are gearing up to celebrate Red Ribbon Week with a classroom door decorating and photo contest. Other schools may use the extensive list of resources available at redribbon.org to take the annual event to deeper and perhaps more meaningful levels. But every October, I feel … Continue reading Rethinking Red Ribbon Week

“We Can’t Vote, But You Can!”

Reflections on a Middle School Voter Registration Drive “Hello, ma’am! Are you registered to vote? Yes? Any recent changes? Address? Name? You can also change your political party.” This became the unofficial script for my 8th grade civics students spending September afternoons in front of a Save-A-Lot grocery store in Del City, Oklahoma. But the … Continue reading “We Can’t Vote, But You Can!”

The Educational Value of Wikipedia in the Age of Fake News

If I had a dollar for every time I have heard a middle school student say that another teacher told them Wikipedia was not a reliable source, “I would be making money in a very weird way” (to put it in the words of the late comedian, Mitch Hedberg). When Wikipedia came along in 2001, … Continue reading The Educational Value of Wikipedia in the Age of Fake News

Trauma Informed Schools: The New ‘New Paternalism’

In 1997, New York University professor, Lawrence M. Mead, edited a book entitled “The New Paternalism: Supervisory Approaches to Poverty.” Mead’s work, spanning more than 30 years, has been highly influential in the implementation of draconian and ineffective work requirements for government assistance programs. “The New Paternalism” directly inspired noted education reformer, David Whitman, to … Continue reading Trauma Informed Schools: The New ‘New Paternalism’

The Movement to End American Football Begins in Schools

The dangers of playing American football are increasingly becoming common knowledge. Further scientific evidence emerges almost on a daily basis relative to a condition in former players known as Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy or C.T.E. There are currently only two kinds of football fans. There are those football fans who know the danger and are interested … Continue reading The Movement to End American Football Begins in Schools

Absent Students Should Not Make Happy Teachers

I had a class a few years ago that in 180 days of school there seemed to be only a handful of days in which the entire class was in attendance. There were several factors which seemed to contribute to this “problem.” The class met 1st hour, which meant that absences were higher than classes … Continue reading Absent Students Should Not Make Happy Teachers

This Public School Teacher Does Not Pledge Allegiance to the Flag

I have not pledged “allegiance to the flag of the United States of America” in more than eight years. My personal objections to participating began as religious (see Anabaptist theology and practice). I was not teaching at the time, so like so many Americans, public situations that observed the pledge were a very irregular part … Continue reading This Public School Teacher Does Not Pledge Allegiance to the Flag