Growing Teacher Movement, the “World We Want,” dollars for preschool, and “free” college tuition

The World We Want (globe) — Head Start Funding (nation) — Oregon’s New Tuition-Less College Plan — and: BAT Association Grows (nation)

This week’s action-packed edition of The Education Town Hall on We Act Radio.

Time to Use the BAT Phone?

One of the downloadable logos available at
One of the downloadable logos available at
The Education Town Hall has hosted current and former teachers with strong opinions about their professions and how best to help their students. Many teachers, here in DC and beyond, have been too dejected or intimidated — after years of discourse blaming, even vilifying, teachers for all that is wrong with education in our country — to speak out. In the last few weeks, however, the BAT Association has formed to bring teacher perspectives to the forefront.

The new teachers’ group, numbering over 21,000 in just a few weeks, has been criticized by some for taking on an unprofessional name. So this reporter did an informal household poll this morning: “What do you think of an association of teachers calling themselves ‘badass’?”

Husband, who hates course language of any kind (and graduated from Massachusetts public schools decades ago):

Maybe the name is suitable for a discussion list or something like that, but it doesn’t offer a good image to the public.

Son, who graduated from DC Public Schools in 2011:

Yeah! That’s what you want! The kind of teacher who says, “OK, I’m supposed to give you this handout and talk to you about… No, [expletive deleted] I’m going to actually teach you some physics!” In DCPS you definitely wanted teachers who understand that authority has power but don’t let that get in the way way of teaching. You wanted badass teachers.

There you have it.

A Growing Association Speaks

“How do you know when a nation’s education policy has gone awry?” asks “With A Brooklyn Accent.” The blog offers three clues:

1. When the two most powerful men shaping education policy in the country- Bill Gates and Arne Duncan, haven’t taught a day in their life

2. When a celebrated organization called “Teach for America” trains talented students to LEAVE teaching after two years to shape education policy

3. When leaders of both major parties take turns bashing teachers and deluging their classrooms with tests and assessments.

Here is what BAT have to say for themselves:

This is for every teacher who refuses to be blamed for the failure of our society to erase poverty and inequality, and refuses to accept assessments, tests and evaluations imposed by those who have contempt for real teaching and learning….

We are a community of teachers, professors, and educators running from Kindergarten all the way to University. We are also parents, your neighbors, and your friends. We are members of your community, and we care deeply about that community. We have come together to push back against so-called corporate education reform, or the Educational-Industrial Complex and the damage it has done to students, schools, teachers, and communities.


See also Atlanta Journal Constitution


The Education Town Hall is broadcast Thursdays at 11 a.m. (Eastern) on We Act Radio.

Listen on-line at We Act Radio)

In the DC Metro Area: WPWC 1480 AM

Full recordings are archived for later discussion and sharing.

Join the (live) conversation by calling 202-889-9797.
Post comments here anytime.

Listen and DO SOMETHING!

The World We Want

Young people around the world are urged to add their thoughts to a global statement regarding education. The United Nations, in conjunction with non-governmental organizations, launched “The World We Want” to amplify voices for sustainable development.

The statement begins as follows:

Today, sixty-one million children and young people are denied the right to education….

We therefore call on all governments, individuals, and organizations responsible for policy, planning, financing, provision, management, delivery and implementation of education to work to:
1.    Pass a Security Council resolution that recognizes the global education crisis and take concrete steps to address education and security, particularly for girls and in situations of emergency.
2.    Get EVERY child in school: 
Work urgently to ensure all children have access to quality learning, including the 61 million excluded boys and girls.
    Provide at least nine years of quality education to every child, where they are equipped with the resources, environment and professional support they require to learn and thrive.

read the rest.
Encourage students to add their comments.


U.S. Senate Panel Approves Head Start Funding

Education Week‘s Alyson Klein reported on Tuesday that a Senate appropriations panel approved a $1.6 billion increase in Head Start funding and an additional $750 million to support preschool improvements.

Both programs are key pieces of the Obama administration’s more-than $75 billion initiative to improve early-childhood education. Obama made a personal pitch for the program in his State of the Union address earlier this year….Ed Week story continues


Oregon Passes Pay-Later College Tuition

Higher education news this week from “Addicting Info”:

Oregon has come up with a plan to help provide higher education for free at their 7 state universities. Advocates of the legislation are calling it the “pay it forward” model. Students will be able to initially attend state universities free of cost. Upon graduating students will pay 3 percent of their paycheck for 24 years in order to help fund the program for future students. The model is partially based on the Australian model which has been fairly successful. Students will be able to enter college without the fear of being buried in debt by the time they graduate. Currently students who attend universities in Oregon graduate with an average of 24,616 dollars in debt.


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