Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Friday, October 22, 2010
Excerpts from School Law:
Teachers have no First Amendment free-speech protection for curricular decisions they make in the classroom, a federal appeals court ruled on Thursday.
A little known fact is that the Bill of Rights only applies to the government's criminal power. Employers are not bound by them. Still when the government is the employer courts used to have a tendency to favor applying them to employees. It seems that is a thing of the past. Free speech is a part of a blanket right teachers are trying to keep known as Academic Freedom. The courts have put the last nail in the coffin on that.
The decision came in the case of an Ohio teacher whose contract was not renewed in 2002 after community controversy over reading selections she assigned to her high school English classes. These included Siddhartha , by Herman Hesse, and a unit on book censorship in which the teacher allowed students to pick books from a list of frequently challenged works, and some students chose Heather Has Two Mommies, by Leslea Newman.
What is not disputed is that these books were a part of the state adopted curriculum. The fact that parents were upset with what was assigned and the student's choices, why is their beef with the teacher and not the state curriculum committee?
"When a teacher teaches, the school system does not regulate that speech as much as it hires that speech," Sutton wrote, borrowing language from a 7th Circuit decision in a similar case. "Expression is a teacher's stock in trade, the commodity she sells to her employer in exchange for a salary. And if it is the school board that hires that speech, it can surely regulate the content of what is or is not expressed, what is expressed in other words on its behalf."
Ok judge, got the message, teach the curriculum we give you, but if parents complain you're on your own. School boards have the right to throw a teacher under the bus. Nice to make it sound better in legalese.
Is anyone in their right mind wanting to enter this profession anymore? How are we going to educate our children when the politicians, courts, parents and students have all the power and the ones with all the responsibility are treated like trash?
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Splendor in the Grass, West Side Story, This Property is Condemned, Gypsy, Love With a Perfect Stranger.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
My heart went pitter patter for Diane Keaton in the movie Looking For Mr. Goodbar. Sexy, beautiful, smart, funny, loved working with deaf kids; too bad she liked picking up one night stands. The movie had a great cast: Richard Gere, Brian Denehy, Tuesday Weld, Richard Kiley, Levar Burton. It's not the type of movie grinnygranny appreciates because of the nudity. After I saw the movie I wanted to marry a woman just like Diane Keaton.
I know she got an oscar that year for Annie Hall, but would anyone be so pathetic that they'd want to watch Woody Allen whine non stop a second time?
I'm glad she's kept on with her career and has lately made some excellent movies; First Wive's Club, Something's Gotta Give, and others. I still find her very sexy.
Friday, October 15, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
Last Monday I dropped wifey at work and went to play with the gaggle. I turned off Academy onto San Mateo and the sky was full of balloon looking close enough that if they were apples I could reach out and pick them. Quit a sight. As I drove on Paseo to Paradise Hills a bunch of balloons were in a vacant lot inflating for one of their competitions. When I got to the golf course a couple flew over while we were getting ready to tee off.
Saturday we had our own little fiesta behind the house. The wind pattern we northeast pushing them southwest. Right over our house. Normally we get the balloon companies that sell rides taking off from Rio Rancho that come over and land on the mesa behind us not the ones from the fiesta. We recognized some of the balloons that had been on TV taking off landing behind us. There must have been a dozen of them. I took three rolls of film and am having them developed. I'll have some of them posted in a few days.
Saturday, October 09, 2010
Wednesday, October 06, 2010
Tuesday, October 05, 2010
Point 2: Kitty Genovese was brutally murdered in New York City in 1969 while around 40 of her neighbors stood at their windows and watched and did nothing, not even phoning the police. Psychologists now have a name for this: it's calle by-stander syndrome. In effect everyone thinks the other guy is going to call or do something and at the same time morbid curiosity and voyeurism take over.
Point 3: A house burned down with the fire department refusing to do their job because the family had not paid their $75.00 fee. The talking heads on the news instead of castigating and being upset over this are actually defending the fire fighters. For video and other links on this clicke here.
Questions that come to mind:
A. How corrupt have we become that this could happen and it would be defended on national news outlets and those who speak for one of the two major political parties?
B. Could this be the wake up call that those who are choosing to throw their vote away (by not voting) finally get what's happening and vote even if they don't like their choice?
C. Have we as a people and a nation become so cold and callous that the Mafia mindset is now the prevailing philosophy? Mario Puzo's explanation for all the murder and mayhem in The Godfather: "It's just business."
Isn't deregulation fun?
Friday, October 01, 2010
No nation in the world—certainly not Finland—has improved its education system by belittling and firing teachers and principals.
People who know nothing about education and whose ideas have no basis in research or practice are calling the shots. Left to their own devices, they will destroy public education. They have already demoralized our nation's teachers. Eventually, their bad ideas will fail, because they are wrong.Diane Ravitch is a historian of education and author of The Death and Life of the Great American School System: How Testing and Choice Are Undermining Education (Basic Books, 2010).