Sunday, April 4, 2010

Getting the adult's attention on education

Two opinion columns this weekend in the Boston Globe are providing some insight into why the "Race to the Top" application for MA was not chosen.

On Saturday, Derrick Jackson wrote:
At best, parents are lumped together among the many “stakeholders" who provide “letters of support" in the Race to the Top applications. Here at home, the 180-page Massachusetts application rarely mentions parents, even as it concedes that “strong parent and community engagement is a critical lever of school turnaround."
The near-omission is shortsighted, especially because you know who will get the blame — from teachers, principals, and politicians — if the achievement gap fails to narrow. Those ignorant, uninvolved parents! Underscoring this mindset is President Obama himself, who in February boasted that he had not missed a parent-teacher conference and says, “I don’t care how poor you are, you can turn off the television set during the week."
Read the full article here

On Sunday, Andy Smarick wrote:

So how did the state still manage to place a discouraging 13th overall out of 16 finalists?
By coming in very last place in the application’s most important section: improving the teaching profession.

Read the full article here

These two groups of folks need to be active in the educational discussion.

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