Posted in John Kuhn, Ravitch, Teaching Career

A Superintendent’s Voice

As my local school district’s school board gets ready to buy out the contract of yet another school superintendent for their own failures…and for her inability to lead the district…

John Kuhn, superintendent of the tiny Perrin-Whitt Consolidated Independent School District (TX) speaks out like few others. See HERE…

This time, at the Save Texas Schools Rally, 2013. Could we get 10,000 people together in Indiana for this sort of thing? Texas led the nation into the morass of overusing tests and privatization…maybe they can lead us out of it as well.

This bitter accountability pesticide is over-spraying the weeds and wilting the entire garden.

You stand on the front lines of poverty and plenty, on the front lines of our social stratification. You are the people who shove their fingers into gushing wounds of inequality that our leaders won’t even talk about, and you aren’t afraid. You’re the last of the Good Samaritans, and you aren’t afraid, even as they condemn you for trying but failing to save every last kid in your classroom. You aren’t afraid, and you keep trying, and you haven’t faltered. You deserve to be saluted, not despised. You deserve to be acclaimed. You deserve so much more than the ugly scapegoating that privatizers peddle in the media and our halls of government.

…History will recognize that the epithets they applied to your schools said more about leaders who refused to confront child poverty than the teachers who tried valiantly to overcome it. History will recognize that teachers in these bleak years stood in desperate need of public policy help that never came. Advocacy for hurting children was ripped from our lips with a shush of “no excuses.” These hateful labels should be hung around the necks of those who have allowed inequitable school funding to persist for decades, those who refuse to tend to the basic needs of our poorest children so that they may come to school ready to learn.

When you’ve been inspired by Superintendent Kuhn, listen to Diane Ravitch at the same rally…!

Don’t blame teachers and don’t blame schools for society’s failure to provide for equality of educational opportunity…Just say no!

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Teachers Should Be Seen and Not Heard

“I’m thinking about the current health care debate, “I said. “And I am wondering if I will be asked to sit on a national committee charged with the task of creating a core curriculum of medical procedures to be used in hospital emergency rooms.”

The strange little man cocks his head and, suddenly, the fly on the wall has everyone’s attention.

“I realize that most people would think I am unqualified to sit on such a committee because I am not a doctor, I have never worked in an emergency room, and I have never treated a single patient. So what? Today I have listened to people who are not teachers, have never worked in a classroom, and have never taught a single student tell me how to teach.”

Heckuva Job, Reformers!

a workforce in the schools that is increasingly demoralized, stressed out because of the demands imposed on them by politicians, and worried that they and their students are being set up to fail by clueless reformers.

When will the CEOs of the “reform” movement be held accountable for the harm they are inflicting on students, teachers, and principals?

Stop the Testing Insanity!


Retired after 35 years in public education.