Dec 17, 2014
For most of our history the teaching of history (and everything else) has been a local concern. That piece of our history might well be drawing to a close. What’s even more troublesome is the content of a more nationalized curriculum. Witness the proposed national advanced placement (AP) standards for the teaching of American history. To be sure, it is important that our students, AP or otherwise, acquire some common knowledge about our past. But what seems to be at work here is an attempt to put in place a common point of view – and one with a political agenda at that. This ought to concern parents of all political persuasions. After all, politicizing a history curriculum in one ideological direction at one historical moment will not prevent re-politicizing it in a different ideological direction at a different historical moment.
Oct 29, 2014
At the University of Minnesota’s “Voterpalooza” event earlier this month, the conversation with political candidates centered on, not surprisingly, student debt. With educational loans now totaling $1.1 trillion nationally and the average college graduate leaving university owing $32,500, this new credit crisis should be on the minds of all Minnesotans.
Oct 7, 2014
I may be a teacher, but I’m a slow learner. And while I teach history, I’m sometimes forgetful about dates. Just when did Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor instruct us that affirmative action should remain on the books for another 25 years? I’d guess we’re at least halfway there.
Sep 18, 2014
Creating stable middle class neighborhoods should be the top priority of our political and civic leaders — a goal requiring quality public schools, reasonable taxes and low crime rates. The simple fact is that Minneapolis and St. Paul will not be healthy without a large and growing middle class.
Sep 2, 2014
Mitch Pearlstein Debates MN2020's Michael Dietrich on Education (9.2.14) From Bloise Olson's podcast.
Jul 30, 2014
K-12 education in Minnesota faces many problems. Turning around such dangerous prospects will be hard under the best of circumstances. But to succeed, Minnesota must narrow not just one achievement gap but three.
Jul 30, 2014
AUDIO: K-12 education in Minnesota faces many problems. Turning around such dangerous prospects will be hard under the best of circumstances. But to succeed, Minnesota must narrow not just one achievement gap but three.
Governor Dayton and DFL legislators either oblivious or uncaring to boys falling behind girls in school and career preparation
May 15, 2014
Sure, girls could use a gender-sensitive boost to gain higher representation in some (certainly not all) STEM fields, but boys have bigger problems these days.
May 4, 2014
When it comes to elementary and secondary education in Minnesota and especially the Twin Cities, vouchers represent the single most promising approach for reducing immense achievement gaps between white and many minority students. Gaps which are just about the biggest in the country and which pose greater threats to economic and individual progress here than perhaps in any other major metropolitan area in the nation.
Feb 27, 2014
“Antibullying” legislation is a top priority for DFL leaders at the Capitol this year. In the last session, their bill got hung up in the Senate, and they appear determined to muscle it through this time around.