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Katherine Kersten responds to Comm. Cassellius’s Counterpoint in today’s Star Tribune

Minnesota Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius is the latest to weigh in with a Star Tribune counterpoint denouncing my recent op-ed, “Undisciplined: Chaos may be coming to Minnesota classrooms, by decree.” Like other counterpoint authors, she refuses to engage me on the facts or to use logical argument to expose supposed fallacies in my work. Instead, she demands imperiously that my voice be silenced, on grounds that I am a “flat-out racist”—i.e., someone who dares to disagree with her about school discipline policies. Cassellius attempts to bully the Star Tribune into no longer publishing my work, so the people of Minnesota can’t read...

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Katherine Kersten responds to the TWO Counterpoints aimed at her in today’s Star Tribune

The Star Tribune has published two counterpoints to my March 18 op-ed on the racial discipline gap in Minnesota schools [“Undisciplined: Chaos may be coming to Minnesota classrooms by decree.”] The authors don’t put much stock in facts or logical argument—name-calling is so much easier. But then, we’ve come to expect that. [Star Tribune illustration.] The first counterpoint [“False claims and dog whistles in KK’s commentary on school discipline”] was written by Julia Hill, a reading teacher in the St. Paul Public Schools, and Dana Bennis, “director of learning” at an organization called “the Institute for Democratic Education in America.” These...

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Undisciplined: Chaos may be coming to Minnesota classrooms, by decree

A state agency aims to eliminate racial disparities in schools' response to misbehavior. Its destabilizing course would only spread the disruption.  This commentary originally appeared in the Star Tribune as their Sunday opinion section cover on March 18, 2018. [Star Tribune illustration.] Brace yourself, parents of Minnesota. Here’s what’s coming soon to a school near you: increased violence, brazen challenges to teachers’ authority and a chaotic environment where learning is an uphill battle. Teachers who try to exert control will find their hands tied, and some kids — no longer accountable for their behavior — will feel free to provoke mischief and...

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Rep. Ilhan Omar, Secretary of Homeland Security in Pretend Shadow Cabinet

One would hope that instead of being a pretend “Secretary of Homeland Security”, she would be an ambassador from the Somali community to Minnesotans and the nation, who would like to hear, “Thank you, Minnesota. Thank you, United States for offering a soft landing after my family fled war and a refugee camp. You are a great people and a great nation; I will work to uphold the Republic and to repay your great kindness.” ...

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Educational Freedom & MLK’s Dream

Yesterday, we celebrated the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. and remembered the dream he had for all Americans. A dream where every person—regardless of socio-economic means—can freely exercise the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. For our children, access to an excellent and effective education is an integral part of exercising these rights. By giving all students the freedom to attend a high-quality school of their choice, we have the opportunity to honor and live out MLK’s legacy the other 364 days of the year. Educational freedom is not about strengthening one type of school...

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St. Paul’s Mayor Gets Off to a Bad Start

This is shocking: Melvin Carter, at his inauguration as St. Paul's mayor, went on an ill-informed rant against the National Anthem: During his inaugural speech Tuesday, St. Paul mayor Melvin Carter III said he was honored to have a locally-born musician present at his own Central High School to sing the national anthem — with a big caveat. “We cannot ignore the painful reminder, written into our anthem’s third verse, of just how deeply injustice is rooted in the American tradition … Our national freedom song is an ode to slavery,” Carter said. “This is the American paradox, passed from generation to generation,...

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