I recently got in a dumb internet fight about school reform. Maybe I’ll get into t here, maybe not. Because it really was dumb. It started because the other guy implied I was a dummy because I’m critical of a lot of the so-called school reform movement. Not me pesonally. Anyone who critiques “school reform.” Which, fine, whatever. That’s the internet for you. I shouldn’t take it personally. I tried to be too cute with my calling him out and I got called out myself. My fault.

The thing is, I’m am school reform advocate. I truly want to improve and change schools. I spend every day trying to teach students how to teach better. I want schools to improve. I think the status quo kind of sucks. 

However, I’m also critical of the school reform movement because I’m on the ground seeing the proposals being pushed. Things like charging student teachers $1,000 to pretend to teach in some phony Second Life to see if they should be eligile for certification. You cannot tell me that is about improving schools. You cannot tell me that is about accountability. That’s about one thing: charging $1000 to a captive audience.

But if I critique that proposal? I’m simple. I want students to graduate high school without being able to read. I’m for the status quo. I’m a union shill. I’m anti-reform. Which is nonsense, but that’s how this “debate” is being framed.

Like so many issues right now, nothing will change until we can actually listen to what our opponents are saying. If we just throw straw men at each other it’s a waste of time. I’m tired of wasting my time.