Blue Serials (September 20th, 2015)

This week, I recap sobering analyses and frustrated responses to various inanities and quagmires of this illustrious profession...

If you're not up for it, I suggest merely watching this video and moving on. No worries - see you next week! Touch the future, not the children!

Pack Up - Eliza Doolittle

Are they gone? OK, good - let's get down to business.  

Oklahoma Speaker of the House Jeff Hickman took time this week to spread a fresh layer of loathing and ignorance over Oklahoma public schools.

Speaker HickmanWe live in a time of dramatic false dichotomies - you EITHER think it's OK to kill black citizens for not showing proper deference OR you hate cops and want them to die instead. You EITHER revile even minimal dress codes for young ladies in high school OR you want them all raped and killed and think it will be their own damn fault, etc. I don't wish to add another.

But I cannot, at my most broad-minded, come up with more than two possible explanations for Hickman and his ilk in the Oklahoma legislature. Even more troubling to me, I can't tell which I consider worse.

Either Hickman is so ignorant and deluded as to be unfit to live on his own, let alone hold public office, or he's a Frank Underwood-level cynic, flinging spraypainted bull$#!+ at the unwashed masses. In other words, it's difficult to know if he's trying to further ruin the state, our children, and the future out of complete cluelessness, or if he's doing it on purpose so he can climb his sad ladder to mediocrity before hell beckons.  

Please let me know if I'm overlooking genuine alternative explanations. I'd be relieved - I assure you.

In any case, the silver lining of this $#!+scapade was that it brought forth a few voices from whom we haven't heard much lately, and stirred up one we're happy has stuck around.

With All Due Respect, Vol. 3 - Rick Cobb of OkEducationTruths discusses the Hickman interview which stirred the kerfuffle this week. Brilliantly. 

Teacher Shortage Is Real. No Claim. - Claudia Swisher, edu-gladiator writ large and Fourth Generation Teacher, with her take on Hickman's comments and this thing the rest of us call 'Reality'. 

False Claims and Old Ideas - Rob Miller, who may have posted on this subject twice just to make sure he made the Blue Serials roundup this week, nevertheless acquits himself well on A View From The Edge.

The Mercenary Approach to Education - I should note that it worked. Rob secured a mention again this week. There should be stickers! Meanwhile, he's annoyed - but in, you know, a fun-to-read-and-agree kind of way. 

My Open Letter to Speaker Hickman and the House Leadership - Nicole Shobert doesn't come out of hiding as often as I'd like, but when she does, it's always worth your perusal. This is must-read. Follow Nicole on the Twitters as @NicoleShobert.

Facts & New Ideas... A Different View - One of my favorite things about Scott Haselwood is his willingness to look past the cliches and platitudes and insist we actually talk workable solutions. No exception here in his reaction to the Hickman inanity.

On a slightly lighter note, I can't let the Speaker's palaver distract us from other #OklaEd greatness...

Trust In Me / Ms. Smith Makes Ends Meet... For Now - A double shot this week from Mindy Dennison at This Teacher Sings. In the former, she calls on the power of no less than Etta James to ask why we find it so far-fetched to trust professionals to be professionals, and teachers to teach. In the latter, she wonders why we continue to cry for excellence while starving anyone who dare take up the calling. You really MUST follow Mrs D on the Twitters at @MrsDSings.

Normally I wrap with something worthy of revisiting from months gone by...

But I'm already way long for what's supposed to be a cute, functional review of the week, AND I simply must include this double shot from my newest #educrush Angela Stockman. She's a big deal something or other out of New York - but before you judge, keep in mind she ain't from that one part...

Pace Picante Commercial

8 Ways To Tame An Angry Parent - More than a list, this is a complementary mini-counseling session in 1200 words or less. Good advice, good insights, much of it stuff we kinda know when it's someone ELSE dealing with a difficult situation, but forget when our adrenaline starts to rise. 

Schooling The Terrible Teacher: 10 Things Parents Should Never Do - The flip side of the previous post, Stockman nicely balances humanity, insight, and a dose of humor and goodwill in this missive to parents wanting more than to conquer the evil educator.

Check out Angela Stockman on her own page, or as a 'senior blogger' (I don't know what that is, but I wanna be one if I grow up) at Brilliant or Insane. Definitely follow her on the Twitters as @AngelaStockman - trust me on this one. 

BE AMAZING, MY #11FF! The need is great, and our gifts sometimes seem so small - but I am in awe of each and every one of you and what you do. Never. Give. Up. 

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