Blue Serials (11/1/15) **Special Edition**
Well, I'll Be Darned! - #OklaEd Legend Rob Miller hit something like a zillion page views this past week...
And - being the way he is - used the occasion to credit and thank others for all they've done instead. Rather than sing his praises even more (why ruin him by letting it all go to his head?), I'll simply share a few of my favorites from recently and not-so-recently, so that if you're new, you can see why he's such a big friggin' deal to the rest of us. But first... "Celebration":
"Celebration - You're a little bit better and ready for some celebration... Some time to get louder and not by yourself." Indeed, Mr. Miller - indeed.
Way Too Little, Seven Years Too Late - How nice of the White House and Arne Duncan to tell us there's simply TOO MUCH TESTING and we've got to dial it back! If only this weren't the same thing they've said several times before without it making any difference at all. Pay no attention to that man behind the cut score.
Just Do What They Did? Really, Jay Cronley?! - Tulsa World columnist Jay Cronley suggests Tulsa teachers stop making excuses for poor marks on the completely discredited punitive bullsh*t state report card system, and encourages more public schools to simply screen out minorities, poor kids, immigrants, or ugly fat chicks in order to improve their rankings. Miller - one of those excuse-driven labor union shills, apparently - takes exception.
Who Exactly Does A-F Help? - Before Cronley proposed his 'Night of Broken Class' solution to the faux 'problem' misidentified by A-F, the Tulsa World - normally a fairly reasonable voice in this madness - went all Yellow #2 Pencil Journalism with their soft condemnation of Tulsa area schools and teachers. 'FAILURE' the ginormous headline read, because presumably 'STOP TRYING TO SERVE ALL CHILDREN INSTEAD OF THE CHOSEN FEW' wouldn't fit above the fold. This is really where Rob's week took a turn for the outraged. I'd like to say I'm sorry it did, but... come on... it's so much fun to read.
The Hard Tyranny of Ridiculous Expectations! - Parents know, and Teachers learn, the futility and danger of making broad, extreme threats on which you cannot possibly follow through. Political leaders and #edreform voices, however... not so much.
The New World of Teaching! - "At your school, every child is required to play football, so you coach them all—the athletic and talented ones, as well as the small, awkward, uncoordinated ones... Now imagine that your team is scheduled for only one game this year. While you have numerous team practices and scrimmages, the success of your entire season will rest on how your athletes perform in only ONE game. A game in which you, the coach, will not be allowed to watch or participate. In fact, you are not allowed to call any of the plays or provide any guidance to players during the contest. The players are completely on their own..." This was one of the first posts of Rob's that made me realize I might be able to write like me but I'd never be able to write like this. It took me weeks to get over that simple truth.
It's Not Complicated - In July 2013, Rob wrote in a tone of amazement at the audacity of those labeling our teacher schools failures without talking to a single person there or setting foot on campus. Even better, their solution was so obvious - ONLY LET THE TOP 10% OF PEOPLE BECOME TEACHERS. Well duh! Why DIDN'T we THINK of that? Of course, this was a long, long time ago, and Oklahoma has learned SO much since then. JUST KIDDING! We still think if we just demand that Ts be the besterly best on an absurdly meaningless scale for no money and statewide disdain, the problem is solved. I wonder how Miller retains such a professional tone. I want to cuss and throw things.
Good Luck To The Graduates of Waldo High School - If #EdReformers get their way, soon all kids will be the exact same child. "In the future, all restaurants are Taco Bell." Good luck with that, kids. At least their class song (I assume every graduating class everywhere will be required to use the same one) will be an easy pick:
Next week we'll double up on some of the other edu-blogs from #OklaEd and beyond. In the meantime, send some love to Rob Miller on the Twitters at @edgeblogger and subscribe to his blog at www.viewfromtheedge.net.