Looking Back (Part 1)

Although I spend most of my waking hours working on or thinking about the stories we’re trying to tell, I have also been retracing the paths that have led to the perch I now occupy, 40 years later. What follows is a trip down memory lane.

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Michelle Rhee’s High-Priced PR

Michelle Rhee has spent about $2 million to buy the public relations services of Anita Dunn and SKDKnickerbocker. It’s a continuing relationship that goes back to early in Rhee’s Chancellorship in Washington, and it’s probably the best money Rhee has ever spent.

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Assets or Liabilities?

In my experience, most administrators and many teachers hold parents in low regard, and their behavior and policies reflect that.

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Our National Anthem’s Two Questions

This Independence Day we might want to think about how easily we can lose what we prize. We might ask if the America envisioned in ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ is slipping away because we lack the lift of a driving dream and because we ask almost nothing of our young people…and very little of ourselves.

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Where Is The Charter School Movement Heading?

How much does a sign reading “CHARTER SCHOOL” reveal about the education being offered inside the building? My answer: About as much as a ’RESTAURANT’ sign reveals about the food it serves. That is, nothing at all.

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“Sit and Stare” to Prepare for Democracy?

Why did thousands and thousands of students opt out of standardized testing this spring? Which tests did they choose to skip? And how did school leaders react? Did they punish, ignore, or–horrors–reward the protesting students?

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The Tenure/LIFO Court Decision

“Sh*t, Sh*t, Sh*t!!!” I wasn’t present when AFT President Randi Weingarten and NEA President Dennis van Roekel heard about “Vergara vs California,” but it’s easy to imagine them uttering an expletive (or two or three).

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