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Showing posts from July, 2019

When good ELA teaching gets implemented through a corporate lens

Grouped around tables at the Center for the Advancement of Reading in Sacramento, more than a decade ago, I had no idea that I was doing a process I would read about later in an education doctorate class on public policy formation (Zancanella & Moore, 2014). Nor did I guess that there would be over four million results criticizing our efforts in a Google search of “criticism of Common Core ELA” in 2019. At least, I’m still proud of the feedback that Expository Reading and Writing (ERWC) leaders gave on early documents that would become the ELA Common Core. I understand the ideas of tight and loose policy, but my life experience has not shown me examples of either working without long-term criticism. Tighter policies are criticized for being unnecessarily prescriptive and stakeholders rebel. Looser policies, like the ELA standards, are slammed for being too vague and not giving enough guidance. ERWC, co-written in the early 2000s by both English professors at the California Stat

Dashboard to a new ideology

The California School Board Association AND the California Association of School Administrators opposed suspension bans. (Washburn, 2019) Former Governor Jerry Brown vetoed or cut down two previous suspension ban bills in 2012 and 2014. (Washburn, 2019) The California Teachers Association (CTA) lobbied against suspension ban bills for years. (Sheeler, 2019) But when SB 419 passed in April this year, it was broadly supported by the American Civil Liberties Union of California, the California PTA, American Academy of Pediatrics (Sheeler, 2019), the California School Board Association, and the California Association of School Administrators (Washburn, 2019); with the only group opposing this first-in-the-nation legislation the Charter School Development Center (Sheeler, 2019).  What happened? What caused this sea change for this much-hated, and much-watched by other states, reform? You might guess that "Political ideologies have changed the interpretation of laws and pra

CODEL as policy for a cohesive California

“Graduate-level education programs prepare professionals and researchers to work in or study one (versus all) of the sectors. Often, education policy and research analysts earn degrees in fields other than education, such as public administration or political science. In any of these programs, there is rarely an overview course or experience that gives budding education policy analysts and researchers an overview of the P-20 system,” writes Jennifer A. Rippner in her 2016 The American Education Policy Landscape (pg. 2). She describes the piecemeal nature of American education and how its lack of cohesive structure affects American academic competitiveness. Rippner describes the educational landscape, but also a problem that has prompted policy-writing in California A 2005 California Senate Bill 724, penned by Jack Scott, allowed the California State University (CSU) system to create a handful of new doctorate programs to address stated need, including an Education Doctorate in Ed

How can schools honor and tap into the knowledge and resources of all families?

In “Funds of knowledge for teaching: Using a qualitative approach to connect homes and classrooms” published in Theory into Practice by Moll, Amanti, Neff and Gonzalez (1992) explain a partnership between anthropology researchers at University of Arizona and elementary teachers in Tuscon led to an at-home inventory of funds of knowledge of Latinx students and families. Although teachers were nervous taking on the persona of qualitative researcher, the prior relationships they had with the children translated into deeper conversations with families that progressed faster than researchers by themselves.  The discovered funds of knowledge and relationships with families led to curriculum bridging home and school competencies. For example, knowledge of Mexican candies, business, and candy making led to inquiry curriculum about what is candy, import and export businesses, candy making, and entrepreneurship. Students, in small groups, created a definition of candy, considering cultur