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National Teacher Appreciation Day: Thank you, teachers!

National Teacher Appreciation Week kicked off yesterday, but the biggest day for educators is today, May 8, as National Teacher Appreciation Day. On this day, students, parents, and communities around the country get to celebrate teachers and honor all they do. And while showing our appreciation shouldn’t be limited to this week and day, it’s a wonderful opportunity to reflect on how teachers and staff go above to help students go beyond.  ...

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Memo to Legislature: Resist Dayton’s Push for Expansion of “Free” Pre-K

The Dayton administration continues its relentless demand for Minnesota to adopt universal Pre-K for all four-year-old’s. There is no danger the legislature will pass universal pre-K this session but GOP leaders might be tempted, as they have in past negotiations, to expand existing programs, adding a few more million here and a few more million there, just to get their K-12 education priorities passed....

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A message to high school seniors: College is one choice, but it isn’t the only choice

For many high school seniors, graduation is less than a month away. There are a lot of emotions that come with this realization: Shock. Panic. Surprise. Excitement. Accompanying such anticipatory angst is the often-dreaded question, “What’s next?” For some, a college education is the next logical step after high school. But it may not be the appropriate path for all students. Nor is it the only way to succeed. ...

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Teacher workplace democracy is a principle but not a practice

Workplace democracy is, unfortunately, a short-lived promise to teachers in Minnesota. While teachers’ unions often claim to favor a democratic approach to our public education system, teachers are rendered mute when it comes to choosing their own union. Workplace democracy is a principle, not a practice. ...

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What Middle School Students Need to Know about Great Jobs Without a Four-Year Degree

Knowing of American Experiment’s project, “Great Jobs Without a Four-Year Degree,” a producer at Minnesota Public Radio recently sent us the printed version of a very good story written by Ashley Gross and Jon Marcus for National Public Radio titled “High-Paying Trade Jobs Sit Empty, While High School Grads Line Up for University.” The two reporters write: In contrast to men and women with four-year degrees, “People with career and technical educations are . . . significantly more likely to be working in their fields of study.”  ...

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Young Communists of Minnetonka

There is a large rock outside Minnetonka High School, where painting the rock apparently is a tradition. Last week, some students painted an American flag on the rock. They also added patriotic messages on the sidewalk, like a "Don't Tread On Me" flag. That brought a response from the Minnetonka Leftist Union, a high school group. The Minnetonka Leftists proudly display the hammer and sickle of Communism as well as the fascist "A" symbol on their Twitter feed: This is the Minnetonka Leftists' tweet about the American flag: Fascists covered the rock and sprayed the sidewalk with militaristic and nationalistic symbols. A...

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Minnesota’s “Brave New World” of education

On April 26, the Minnesota Department of Human Rights (MDHR) announced that it has reached “collaborative agreements” with 10 school districts and charter schools which it claims discriminate against black and Native American students in disciplinary actions. The department bases its claims on the fact that black and Indian students in these schools are suspended at higher rates than their proportion in the student population. In the department’s view, such demographic discipline “disparities” must be due to teacher bias, rather than actual differences in student behavior. ...

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Coming Soon: Greater Chaos in Our Classrooms

In Fall 2017, the Minnesota Department of Human Rights (MDHR) sent letters to 43 school districts and charter schools across the state, announcing that they are under investigation for racial disparities in student discipline rates. Black and American Indian students in these districts are disciplined at higher rates than their proportion in the student population—and the department assumes that racist policies and practices are to blame. MDHR has declined to make public either the letters or the school districts targeted, citing ongoing investigations. At last, however, we have learned the identity of one such district: The Duluth Public Schools. The Duluth News...

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Suicide of the West by Jonah Goldberg

Influential conservative columnist Jonah Goldberg’s new book, Suicide of the West, was released this week, and his sober essay in National Review, adapted from the book, can be found here.  His main point is that our “suicide” is not accidental or happenstance, it is a deliberate choice we are making.  Here is a summary of his important points: He says poverty is man’s natural environment, and, somehow, about 300 years ago, “we stumbled into a different world,” one that was unnatural and accidental, that he calls “the Miracle.” Today “Western civilization generally, and America particularly, is on a suicidal path. The threats...

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