An open letter to Representative Richard Corcoran, Speaker of the House… I’ve been hearing a lot about “hope” in education circles lately – “Schools of Hope”, “Hope Scholarships”, providing hope for students in “failing” schools. The term seems to be used by you and other legislative leaders as a way to garner public support for … More Dear Mr. Speaker: What is Your Definition of “Hope?”
At the end of the 2017 legislative session, Florida’s “schools of hope” plan was approved, tucked inside House Bill 7069. This 274-page education bill was assembled at the last minute behind closed doors with little to no opportunity for public input, discussion and debate. 1 HB 7069 allows the Florida Department of Education to approve … More Questions that State Legislators Should Have Answered Before Approving HB 7069
Florida’s public schools have been under attack in the last 10 years, with a strong focus on accountability. The primary measurement used to ensure this accountability is student scores on standardized tests, with the assumption that these tests are accurate measures of student learning, teacher effectiveness and overall school quality. Scores on the Florida Standards … More The Florida Standards Assessment and Accountabiity
The first week of the 2018 legislative session in Tallahassee begins January 9. Do your representatives know what your priorities are for education? As elected officials, they have a civic duty to represent their constituents, so it’s important that we communicate with them about what’s important to us. It can be difficult and time consuming … More 2018 Legislative Session – What do we want from Public Education?
Let’s make a “School Choice” Vouchers, charters and private schools – they’re all the buzz right now, as politicians work to expand school “choice” and privatization programs. But, how much do we really know about them unless we try them? My family did! And, they weren’t the right “choice” for us. In no way would … More No one will ever know what this flower means to me
The following was shared recently by a Florida teacher (published with permission): “After 22 years, I don’t know if I have it in me anymore. I am a teacher. I will always be a teacher. I love teaching, but this isn’t teaching. Everything I am required to do is about preparing my students for “the … More Teaching in a high stakes accountability system
During the 2016 session, the Florida legislature passed a bill known as HB 7069. A combination of many other proposed legislative actions regarding education, the bill was one of the most highly contested in recent years. It barely passed the senate, and thousands of Florida citizens, including Superintendents and School Boards, petitioned Governor Scott to veto the … More Urge your district to fight to save public education
We refuse the state mandated tests because we CARE about learning, not about a test score. We refuse the state mandated tests to protect our kids from testing abuse and from being used by the state as tools by which they evaluate teachers and schools. We honor our children’s teachers. We fight to restore … More Thank you, teachers
Everyone wants public schools to be held accountable, right? After all, if tax dollars are spent on a public program or service, there should be a reasonable expectation that the outcomes will be positive, so that public funding isn’t wasted. That was the goal of Florida legislators when the statewide education accountability system was created. … More Want less tests? Change the Accountability System.
On February 7, 2017, Betsy DeVos was confirmed as U.S. Secretary of Education. The confirmation was one of the most contested appointments in recent history, having passed by a tie vote in the Senate with the Vice President stepping in to break the tie. Many factors make DeVos unqualified for the role, not the least … More Betsy DeVos: the Silver Lining