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2011 Ends

December 31, 2011

As 2011 ends, I am beginning a blog that will offer my commentary on articles I glean from the two newspapers I get on line (The Boston Globe and the New York Times) and from various progressive blogs I read (Naked Capitalism, Truthdig, Common Dreams to name three) and from articles and/or monographs I read as part of my consulting work. I intend to launch this in phases— which means I would value any feedback you might offer in terms of format as well as content.

At this juncture I am not sure how often I will “go to press”… especially given some busy weekends ahead… but once I fully launch I will se some regular dates…

A big thanks to Mike Arauz who provided me with an invaluable tutorial as a Christmas gift…

Here are today’s links:

The NYTimes describes why the Commissioner in New York is upset that teachers and administrators aren’t buying into the Race to the Top evaluation model…  a predictable crisis…. indeed your humble blogger saw this one coming in 2009 (see October white paper)… The time and energy spent wrangling on this would be better spent developing ways for interagency collaboration for pre-school kids in need.

The Arizona state government wants to “teach oppression objectively” in an effort to improve the engagement of Mexican American students, according to an NYTimes article… and Howard Zinn is laughing somewhere— or maybe weeping…

Web-based learning intersects with sex education in the USA as reported in today’s NYTimes… and students are getting their questions answered on line instead of on the street… This could be a step forward if the search engines could be rigged to avoid having curious teens sent to pornographic web pages when they pose questions… but what will happen to us if we get, say, Rick Santorum in the White House? Or what happens when a conservative school board insists that Planned Parenthood web addresses need to be filtered?

The NYTimes editorial today chastised the 2111 congress for “The Damage of 2011″… but…  we’ve only begun to witness the damage done… because this year’s federal government shifted much of the burden of governing to the states who have neither the appetite or the ability to raise the money needed to sustain schools, medical services, or social services.

According to Pico Iyer in the New York Times, finding peace of mind for children of the future will require intentional disengagement from technology… something that applies to adults now!

In the global economy, this Bloomberg article describes how affluent Chinese students get a leg up on Asian immigrants… so much for working your way up the ladder!

The second section of this lengthy article from Naked Capitalism touch on public schools directly… but the “non-economic policy” sections also get at some of the social issues that create challenges for public schools. If only we could engage in the kind of intergovernmental dialogues the author envisions.

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