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Ask Arne: Disgruntled Teachers Invited to Put Duncan on the Spot

Will Arne Duncan answer the tough education questions in his upcoming Twitter town hall?

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan joined Twitter at the end of May, and now he's ready to put himself in the social media hot seat. He's opened the floor for the inaugural #AskArne Twitter Town Hall, and he's bound to receive plenty of tough questions on a wide range of education issues.

Duncan's stances on key education issues haven't made him too popular with many educators, particularly his blaming "bad" teachers for subpar standardized test scores. Despite research showing that evaluating teachers based on those test scores isn't good policy, Duncan's supported doing so. He's also consistently backed charter schools and held them up as the shining examples of education excellence, even though the latest CREDO study showed that only one out of six performs better than the neighborhood public school while two out of six do worse.

As a result, the response to Duncan's open letter to America's teachers on Teacher Appreciation Day in May was scathing, and his failure to participate in the recent national Save our Schools March and Conference further strained his relationship with many teachers. Plus, as this tweet by TheFrustratedTeacher to the town hall shows, despite Duncan's experience in education administration, his lack of teaching experience continues to be an issue for many educators:

While it would certainly be intriguing to hear Duncan's response to that question, honest answers on hot topics like Race to the Top and No Child Left Behind—and an explanation of what's being done to prevent cuts to higher education—would be welcome too. However, if Duncan plays politician, skirts the issues and doesn't acknowledge the heat he's been getting, his social media-savvy critics are likely to burn him alive at the Twitter stake.

If you have a question for Duncan, tweet it using the #AskArne hashtag. You can watch the live broadcast of his answers on the Department of Education's ustream channel on August 24 at 1:30 p.m. EDT.

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