Rich Student, Poor Student

Students in Salem, MA learn a hard lesson about class

backtoschoolDear [insert name here]:
Welcome back to school, Salem, MA student! If you’ll be attending this school, this school or this school, let me take this opportunity to congratulate you. Like the mariners of yore, your parents successfully navigated the treacherous shoals of Salem’s school *choice* system. And that’s great news for you because it means that you’ll be having your *whole child* educated this year, including the part of you that loves art, music and super cool project-based learning. As for those of you who’ll be going to this school, this school, this school or this school, well, your education is going to look just a little bit different. Shall we pop in and see? Continue reading

Fatuous Pablum

David Kirp says that teaching isn’t a business—and that makes a lot of people really mad…

kirp-improbablescholars1EduShyster: Let me try to break this to you gently. Your recent New York Times piece, Teaching Is Not a Business, didn’t win you a lot of friends on Twitter. In fact, one of your detractors referred to your entire oeuvre as *fatuous pablum.*

David Kirp: Wow—I seem to have provoked, not just outrage, but a mixed metaphor. Pablum, which is actually spelled pabulum, is something you eat.

EduShyster: Perhaps the point was that if one consumes too much pablum, one grows fatuous. I’m curious though, did you hear from any of your critics directly? Continue reading

Flip That School: In Newark, Reform and Real Estate Go Hand in Hand

A conversation with investigative journalist Owen Davis

business handshakeEduShyster: You have a fascinating new story out about how real estate concerns are increasingly driving school closures and charter school expansion in Newark, NJ. Can you give us the 15 second version?

Owen Davis: Basically incentives created by the federal government to help all schools have been earmarked for charters in a convoluted way that ends up hobbling district schools. Continue reading

Putting the PR in Student Power

A student group with some unusual connections *schools* reporter Sarah Lahm.

student powerBy Sarah Lahm,
EduShyster Academy
I don’t know about you, but when I was in college (#darkages), being part of a *student-led* group meant sitting around in someone’s dank dorm room, plotting how to get to the nearest town to buy beer. Oh, and one time, some of us wild and crazy know-it-alls actually wrote an editorial about a certain professor, who insisted on grading us according to a rigid numerical scale. 

Now, of course, we would recognize him as a data-driven genius, but back then, assigning numbers to students was considered reductive and demeaning. But I digress. Today’s young go-getters would never stand for such meek and minimal *student-led* activities. No, no, no. Today’s social-justice infused future transformational leaders have recognized that no one gets anywhere without a whole lotta spin control, and I’m not talking about the laundry. Here’s how I got schooled… Continue reading

Tennessee’s Fool of Merit

Accountability for thee but not for me…

By Joe Nashville
huffman 3During EduShyster’s last visit  to the Volunteer State, we were left to wonder if the sword of punitive accountability cuts both ways.  Fortunately, if you’re a Tennessean who puts students first, the answer is still no.  In fact, Kevin Huffman, aka the TNeduCommish or K-Huff, seems to be competing with Louisiana’s John White for the honor of most excellent excellence. Continue reading