Monday, February 21, 2011

Why teachers nationwide are angry, protesting

Attacks on the teaching profession have escalated over the past two years, says author and education historian Diane Ravitch. She writes that the protests in Wisconsin are the result "of a simmering rage among the nation's teachers," brought on by attempts to tie teacher evaluations to test scores, threats to collective bargaining, widespread teacher firings and other issues. She predicts an increasing number of teacher protests, including a July march on Washington, D.C., led by a group of National Board Certified Teachers. CNN

Ways to incorporate the Wisconsin protests into lessons:

Protests in Wisconsin over the collective-bargaining rights of teachers and other state workers -- which forced the closure of many schools across the state -- offer opportunities for student learning, columnist Eugene Kane writes. When teachers return, they should use the experience to teach students about citizens' rights under the U.S. Constitution to peaceably protest policies they do not agree with. Students could research the history of such protests in the U.S. or compare them with uprisings in other countries to help put the events into context, Kane writes. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Washington Post/The Associated Press

In these tough economic times, schools are being forced to make tough cuts in their programs due to a lack of funding. Northridge Mass Media students put together a public service announcement about what might happen if budget shortfalls continue due to education reforms and property tax caps. Education reform is meaningless without proper funding.

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