Entries by Mercedes Schneider

VIDEO: Vaping in the Classroom

One of the challenges of being a public high school teacher is developing a constant awareness of what is transpiring in my classroom. Even when I conference individually with my student, my eyes and ears are open in a hyper-observant manner that I have cultivated over decades. Of course, times change, and over those decades, […]

Islamist Gülen Schools in America: Interactive Map, Video and More

In October 2015, the Republic of Turkey retained the London-based, international law firm, Amsterdam and Partners, “to conduct a global investigation into the activities of the organization led by the Turkish cleric Fethullah Gülen.” Another component of Amsterdam and Partners’ work related to Gülen concerns public awareness: “We have been retained by the Republic to expose allegedly unlawful […]

Video and Full Transcript of Betsy DeVos’ CPAC Interview with Kayleigh McEnany

On February 22, 2017, US ed sec Betsy DeVos participated in an interview with journalist and Trump supporter, Kayleigh McEnany, for the Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC). Below is the full video followed by the full transcript of that interview (approx 9 minutes): TRANSCRIPT KM: Hi, Madam Secretary. It’s so great to be here with you. BD: […]

U.S. Ed Sec Betsy DeVos’ Letter to State Superintendents Re: ESSA State Plans

On Friday, February 10, 2017, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos sent to state superintendents a letter regarding the formulation of Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) plans. In short, she notes that the ESSA guidance composed under the direction of former US Ed Sec John King could be scrapped by Congress but that states should […]

The Fizzle of Common Core Face, Student Achievement Partners

The chief purpose of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) initiative was to develop a “common core” of ELA and math standards that states (ideally all) would adopt so that state education might be standardized and therefore comparable using similar assessments. At the center of CCSS development was Student Achievement Partners (SAP), an organization created […]

The Republic of Turkey Wants the State of Texas to Investigate Gulen Charter Schools

In October 2015, the Republic of Turkey retained the international law firm, Amsterdam and Partners, to investigate the global activities of Pennsylvania resident, the mysterious Turkish cleric, Fethullah Gulen, whose network of followers happen to operate over 100 US charter schools. On May 19, 2016, the Texas Tribune reported that Amsterdam and Partners planned to file a […]

Obama’s former DOE Secretary Wanted More Mayoral Control of Public Schools Nationwide

Not long after President Obama brought former Chicago Public Schools (CPS) CEO Arne Duncan to Washington, D.C., to become U.S. Secretary of Education, Duncan spouted out this March 31, 2009, declaration regarding his desire to establish mayoral control over more school systems. As NBC Chicago reports: Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Tuesday that mayors should […]

About That Fortune Article on Common Core…

I have been reading Peter Elkind’s January 01, 2016, article in Fortune on the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Elkind’s work is a study in foolishness. Basically, he demonstrates the unfounded faith that powerful individuals whose lives only skirt the worlds of whose with children in public schools have placed in a set of rushed, contrived standards […]

Eighth-grader Given Assignment on Contracting Herpes from a Drunken One Night Stand

Addendum 11-07-15: Originally I had written that the assignment below was teacher-made. However, I have received other info to the effect that the assignment was “a supplement” to the Seven Habits book. I am trying to get a clear word on where the assignment originated. Adding to the above, hours later: I visited a bookstore to skim The Seven […]