American public education is under attack.
It’s been under attack for a long time, but with the (at this writing) probable appointment of Betsy DeVos to Secretary of Education in the Trump administration, the threat to public education is greater than ever. We must act now to defend this great American institution.
They say knowledge is power, and with that in mind I have launched this blog. The intent is to provide background and context to the current struggle to keep public education from being destroyed by privatization through vouchers, charters, and other mechanisms of “school choice.” I add parentheses around the words “school choice” because it is, in my opinion, a false concept that only offers access to the students and parents who have the abilities and resources to do so and leaves our most vulnerable students behind.
Although I am not a teacher, I have been involved in K-12 education for most of my career, from many different perspectives: head of an environmental education center working with K-12 schools; a substitute teacher in K-8 schools; more than a decade working with the noted researcher and founder of the Effective Schools framework and philosophy, Dr. Lawrence W. Lezotte; a 3-year stint at the university level with the MSU College of Education Office of K-12 Outreach; and a parent of three now grown children who were educated in public schools. Perhaps my most critical experience in public education was as a student. I credit my K-12 education with literally saving my life.
I hope to bring all these perspectives to this blog with reporting and stories about public education not only from me, but from public school teachers, parents, administrators, and researchers. My goal is to increase public understanding about the actual state of public education, the politics involved in how public education works, and most importantly, the critical role public education plays in our democracy and how privatizing is democracy’s greatest threat.