Stop Trying To Indoctrinate My Kids.

My pal and colleague Erika Sanzi is chief editor of Project Forever Free, where this post first appeared. She is the mother of three school-aged sons who currently attend a district school, a charter school, and a private school—in 3 different zip codes. I really don’t need activists trying to indoctrinate my children under the guise of classroom teaching. If they are up to the challenge of providing background information, a variety of perspectives and …

For White Teachers of Black Children.

This is a guest post by Mark Joseph, a sixth-grade math teacher at KIPP Rise Academy in Newark, where he has taught for thirteen years. For Mark’s other posts, see here, here, here, here, and here. Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. – James Baldwin I’ve been lucky to see Dr. Jeff Duncan-Andrade speak a few times. I actually have one of his talks from 7 years …

Asbury Park High School Student Brings Loaded Gun to School; Community and Staff Kept in the Dark.

I have a scoop that I wish I didn’t have, courtesy of three anonymous sources, all staff members at Asbury Park Public Schools. An Asbury Park High School student brought a loaded gun to school. One source said this happened for three consecutive days; another said it was one day. This student sat through classes with the loaded gun until another student told Principal Kathy Baumgardner (photo above).  Asbury Park High School has metal detectors …

At KIPP Seek Academy in Newark, It’s A Different Kind of Halloween!

 Today’s no ordinary day at KIPP Seek Academy in Newark. Instead of the traditional Halloween parades, students there are attending school today dressed in outfits that represent their hopes and dreams for the future. Oh, there is a parade, but instead of ghosts and Spiderman, students will dress as doctors, teachers, computer programmers, police officers, and even Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and astronaut Mae Jemison! After the parade, Seek students will participate in a …

Tafshier Cosby-Thomas: “Parents are Making Choices for Their Children. Why Would Anyone Get in the Way of That?”

Last week I had the opportunity to interview long-time Newark resident Tafshier Cosby-Thomas on her experiences with the city’s public schools: traditional, magnet, and charter. While Education Commissioner Lamont Repollet, under instructions from Governor Phil Murphy, takes a “pause” on authorizing charter expansion in order to conduct his “review,” let’s pierce the smog of special interests and politicking around this hot-button issue and actually talk to parents whose children’s educational trajectory rides on decisions made …

Sweeney, Ruiz & Madden Announce Committee Hearings on Troubling Videos of Teachers Union Officials

A quick response from New Jersey legislative leaders (see here for context): TRENTON – Senate President Steve Sweeney, Senate Education Committee Chairwoman M. Teresa Ruiz and Senate Labor Committee Chairman Fred H. Madden today announced that they will hold joint committee hearings in the wake of online videos that appear to show teachers union officials suggesting that teachers should not report assaults against students, including an alleged sexual assault. “These union officials appear to be advocating …

Why Can’t Plainfield City Find a Superintendent?

You have to have the parents of this district who are going to charter schools feel comfortable about coming here,” he said. “If they don’t, you’re going to lose more kids. That’s Ronald E. Bolandi, newly-named Interim Superintendent of Plainfield City Public Schools, one of New Jersey’s low-income “Abbott” districts that receive compensatory state aid. According to today’s  Star-Ledger, Bolandi is the fourth superintendent of Plainfield City just this year and the School Board is …