Tag Archives: public education

Mind Prison

By Robert C. Koehler

“You let them use profanity in their writing?”

George winced and who can blame him? These were 10-year-olds I was talking about, one in particular, Amanda, who’d written about her fight with a bully on the school bus. The bully had cussed her out and in her essay she quoted him with unblinking precision, raising — certainly in my neighbor’s mind (we were riding the train home together as I rattled on) — some alarming questions, e.g.: Truth is nice, but what about decency? And aren’t fifth-graders a little too young for academic freedom?

I’d put these questions another way: To what extent do children own their own lives? And, is there a pedagogical difference between guiding and herding?

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Why We Say Save Our Schools

copyright © 2011 Betsy L. Angert. Empathy And Education; BeThink or BeThink.org

I am but one who will stand strong to ensure an equal education for all. All who do or plan to, will express themselves in various ways. Some will March. Others will Rally or gather in Conference. Several have, do, or expect to act locally. Countless change what they can for children within the dynamics that define their family. Nationwide, innumerable Americans join hands and embrace a common cause. Let us Save Our Schools. Continue reading

The School-to-Prison Pipeline

By Robert C. Koehler

I hope the Dignity in Schools Campaign overflows its banks, spilling awareness into every corner of the country.

“Millions of children and youth are denied educational opportunities in the United States,” begins the National Resolution for Ending School Pushout, which some 200 organizations in 43 states have so far signed. “This injustice results from systemic inequality and a lack of public commitment to doing what is necessary to keep all young people in school.”

Can we sit with this statement a moment, please?  Can we sit with it without blame, denial or quick opinions, and simply let it wash at the edges of our sense of national greatness? Our military, political and cultural thrust reaches every corner of the globe. We’re the world’s only superpower. And we’re feeding our own children — a shocking percentage of them, at any rate — into a sort of Darwinian meat grinder of low expectations, zero tolerance and fend-for-yourself hopelessness.

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