‘Be Informed -Posts’ Posts

 

Latest Teacher Essay That Tears Testing Apart

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Everyone should read in the Chicago Sun Times┬áthe latest teacher essay that tears testing apart piece by piece. Fifth-grade Chicago teacher Rachel Schwartz explains how the test fails to help children learn, causes them mental anguish, eats up days that could be devoted to learning (on top of the other tests that Chicago imposes), and […]

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Illinois Writing Project Teacher Leadership Institute

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The 2015 Illinois Writing Project Teacher Leadership Institute focuses on both writing instruction and strategies for teachers to take formal and informal leadership roles in their schools. It’s scheduled for July 13-28, with an after-school pre-meeting in May and a followup gathering in Sept. Teachers who speak up for supportive policies for our work and […]

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Many Voices Are Protesting Testing

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Looks like the backlash gaining momentum, as many voices are protesting testing. Here’s Diane Ravitch’s tally of the numerous articles, reports, and critiques as March pummels us with unsettled weather. A wide variety of voices can be heard — parents, teachers, reporters, commentators, and – hey – even Texas state legislators! Here in Chicago, one […]

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Administrators Speak Up Against Attacks on Public Schools

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We’re especially pleased to see so many administrators speak up against attacks on public schools. This includes — can you believe it? — over 230 Arizona school SUPERINTENDENTS through their organization. And the courageous New York high school principal, Carol Burris. Hopefully, if administrators start speaking truth to power like this, more of the rest […]

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Opposition to Excessive Testing Is Heating Up in Chicago

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Following up on New York, opposition to excessive testing is heating up in Chicago. Teachers at two Chicago schools, Saucedo and Drummond, supported by large numbers of parents, have unanimously voted to boycott the upcoming state tests, which are about to be replaced by the PARCC exams. Kids are over-tested as it is, these teachers […]

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New York Testing Struggle

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Here’s a quick report on the New York testing struggle: The NY Regents’ recommendations for delay in consequences for the new tests includes a number of important points. And even state legislators are getting in on the act. It’s really important for teachers everywhere to be aware of what’s happening, and to speak up in […]

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When Real Kids Are Turned into Data Points

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Peter Smagorinsky explains with great clarity what happens for teachers and students when real kids are turned into data points. Cheers for reporter/blogger Maureen Downey and the Atlanta Journal Constitution for publishing Peter’s cogent reflections for the larger public to read.

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If Only the Public Knew How Things Really Work in Schools

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If only the public knew how things really work in schools . . . They would be so much more supportive of us! But we’re the only ones who can explain it to them. Here are two examples, one rather discouraging, the other more hopeful. So in California, teachers are beginning to learn how “close […]

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The Real Story on the US PISA Test Rankings

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So here’s the last word from Teachers Speak Up for the crazy year of 2013. I know most of you, or your educator colleagues, have been shy about telling your own story to the public. But how about sharing some info about the real story on the US PISA test rankings. OK, you’ve been so […]

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The Latest PISA International Test Score Comparisons

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The latest PISA international test score comparisons are out, and they portray US education is pretty mediocre. According to the charts, we ranked 20th among other countries in reading, 30th in math, and 23rd in science. As parents, community members, politicians, and education critics begin asking about these numbers, we teachers need to be well […]

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