Last week I hammered home one of my favorite points: One educational size doesn’t fit all. This applies to traditional versus progressive learning, ethnocentric classrooms, acceleration, dual language programs, and more. While engaging in my favorite activity of advocating for giving every family what they want, and giving every student what they need, I asked… Continue reading Never Waste a Good Crisis: How NYC Families (And Teachers And Advocates) Can Take Advantage, Too (Part #2)
In March, the New York City Department of Education announced they would be cancelling state tests for the 2019-2020 academic year. Then, at the end of April, they revised the grading system so that those in elementary school will receive a final Meets Standards or Needs Improvement assessment, while those in middle school might also… Continue reading No Tests, No Grades, No Problem: What NYC Can Still Do
(This is a guest post by Padraig Shea, an educator and baseball coach in the South Bronx. He has taught in Arkansas, South Korea, and Houston. His writing has appeared in the Boston Globe, Valley Advocate, and Fulbright Korea Infusion.) New York City’s coronavirus quarantine has reached biblical proportions; schools and many businesses closed more… Continue reading Remote Learning Shines Spotlight On Why Schools MUST Change
Will They? On Saturday, April 11, 2020, New York City mayor Bill De Blasio announced that, due to Coronavirus, all school buildings will remain closed for the duration of the academic year, which is scheduled to end on June 26. Remote learning, however, will continue. A few hours later, NY governor Andrew Cuomo countered with… Continue reading Will NYC Students Have To Repeat a Grade? Can They? Should They?
As the COVID-19 pandemic closes schools for New York City’s 1.1 million students, remote instruction — teachers providing instruction through platforms like Zoom and Google Meet and YouTube — is the new normal. At least for the students who have access to laptops and the internet. Yet many students are not so lucky, largely because… Continue reading It’s a Matter of Equity: Petition Demands Free Internet for ALL Low Income NYC Families
Following the closing of schools due to Coronavirus, New York state announced that English Language Arts (ELA) and Math assessments would be canceled for the 2019-2020 academic year. Though these annual exams are required by law, NYC applied for and was promptly granted a waiver from the federal government, in light of the ongoing health… Continue reading NY State Cancels ELA & Math Exams for 2020 – What Might Happen Next
School is what you do before the “real world.” It isn’t supposed to prepare you for the real world, it’s supposed to give you a place to prepare yourself for the real world. As it stands today, it is failing far too many students as evidenced by the proliferation of private tutors, the prevalence of… Continue reading The Broken Feedback Loop: Failing to Prepare Students Prepares Them to Fail
In software development, there is a system called test-driven development or TDD. It’s a five-step process that gets repeated until a finished product is obtained. Its core mechanic consists of writing tests to check if your software works before you write the software, and when you write the software, you write it just to pass… Continue reading Can This Software Development Process Be the Key to Raising Standards at All Schools?
(This is a guest post by Kathi Sherzer. Kathi was a stay at home mom for many years who volunteered at her son’s school, house of worship and with CONTACT, a Philadelphia organization providing outreach services to homebound seniors. Kathi joined S.A.G.E. 12 years ago and continues her role with the organization from her home… Continue reading The Benefits of Senior Volunteers in Your Child’s Classrooms
I have been called a racist many, many times. Because I don’t agree with the Mayor’s proposal to get rid of the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT). Because I don’t think that sitting low-achieving students next to high-achieving students will magically raise test scores. Because I think school rezoning is just a way to… Continue reading If This Is a Victory For Integration Then, Yup, I’m a Racist