For the Monty Python Lovers. . .
I’m not dead yet!
Many thanks to all of you who have been writing me to find out where I disappeared to, but I am well and still skulking about on the internets. After my last post I had a run-in with the Thanksgiving holidays, relatives and kids out of school to contend with. After that I was feeling a little tired and introspective, and gathering intel on the then recent changes John White had brought to the Common Core tableau: Quite an interesting few tidbits that I will get to later. I was curious to see how that situation evolved before I weighed in on what I found out of hypothesized happened, when some back to back intestinal illnesses swept the household. No one was spared, and it was horrible. I missed all sorts of Christmas parties and celebrations at work and with friends as a result, but learned the immeasurable value of saltines, bland eggs, white toast, and diluted Gatorade. While struggling to overcome these intestinal atrocities visited upon us, we also had to prepare for a cruise we’d booked back March, that had managed to sneak up on us.
We are now returned from that excursion but it left me without an internet connection. I dared not mention anything about the cruise what with all the various social media I’m on these days and the trillions in of secret Nazi gold I have stashed in the house. While floating with stingrays in crystal clear aquamarine waters I did manage to cobble together a few loose posts in my head but am also working through a backlog of work, e-mails and research.
I’ll admit to a little burnout as well. This happened to me last year at almost the exact same time so perhaps this is a seasonal low energy thing I’m experiencing too?
Did you miss me?
Change of Topic. . .
Has anyone else noticed the great increase in bloggers and invested parents taking part in education these days? Even among friends and random conversations? I remember just a short year ago no one would give me the time of day when I talked to them about teacher evaluation systems, Common Core, high stakes testing, charter schools and vouchers. While I was on my cruise, dressed up with my family waiting to take our obligatory fancy portraits, a random couple started chatting with me about most of those issues without any prompting. The husband/boyfriend was a diehard homeschooler and the wife/girlfriend was a second grade teacher from Mississippi and they were asking me what my thoughts were on the on Mississippi based teacher evaluation system (I’ve never heard of but which they said was nationwide, something like Msix but not that since that’s the migrant database) and Common Core. To me this is an indication that these issues have pierced the mainstream of our collective consciousness.
So this is a positive development, but one which gives me pause. I’ve helped drive these issues to the mainstream conversation, but where do we all go from here and what role should I take?
Some of my goals have now been achieved. Now that parents are becoming informed and doing their own research the many dangers our education system, children and future of our country faces are now receiving the scrutiny they deserve. The forces we are fighting against are realizing this too. My advice to everyone is to keep your eye on the ball. I expect they will try to redirect you with a new foe or focus. They will start to pretend to listen to you, but be wary, these folks are masters of deception and Orwellian language and have the funding and influence push a lot of cleverly named Trojan legislation very quickly under the guise of addressing your concerns.
If I had to wager what form their oppression will take in next year’s upcoming legislative session it will be in the form of last minute amended legislation initially introduced to address parent and constituent concerns. When this happens do not be fooled. Make sure your legislative sponsors keep tight control of their proposed legislation throughout the entire process and do not leave obvious loose ends that can be line-item vetoed by Bobby Jindal to eviscerate or alter the intent of your legislative goals.
We all have a lot of work to do this up-coming year to capitalize on our building momentum. I hope you too can take your time to recharge your batteries. We have a long haul coming up this next legislative session, so make sure you top off before then. We didn’t get here alone and we win this alone either. But on the plus side we have many more allies to help shoulder the load when one of us falters. Thanks for carrying my load. J