GOOD

Ordinary Citizens Catalyzing Change: A 'People's History' of 2013

The real story of 2013 was "ordinary people" in the streets who challenged injustice and worked for "good."



This year has been full of examples of people making history. Although newspapers and textbooks often focus on political and military leaders, the real story was with "ordinary people" in the streets who challenged injustice and worked for "good."

At the Zinn Education Project, our goal is to help teachers introduce these stories from a people's perspective. Teaching outside of the textbook and the mainstream news helps students see the roles they can play in making the world a better place.

Keep Reading
Articles

C'mon Mayor Bloomberg, Let's Stop and Frisk Some Test Scores

Just as NYC police found in most stop-and-frisk cases, when you analyze standardized test scores, there's nothing there.

I'd rather have a tall glass of "innocent until proven guilty," whether it's about my standing as a citizen in New York City or my students' test scores.

Keep Reading
Articles

How Mass Civil Disobedience at a Seattle High School Catalyzed the 'Education Spring'

Garfield High School launched testing boycott that spread to other schools in the city and helped spark a national movement to oppose testing abuses.


Seattle's Garfield High School, home of the bulldogs, is used to winning.

Our jazz band is a perennial winner of the Essential Ellington national completion, our track and basketball team are perennial state contenders, our drumline just took the top place in the end of the year regional competition, and we have award-winning clubs such as Junior State of America debate team and the knowledge bowl. But this year we scored a whole different kind of victory: Not a high score on the test, but a defeat of the test itself. Not a win for a competition, but a victory for the solidarity of students, parents, and teachers in the struggle for authentic assessment over standardized testing.

Keep Reading
Articles

Atlanta Cheating Scandal Lesson: We Must Return to Real Teaching and Learning

Achievement tests were not designed for the purposes of promoting or grading students, evaluating teachers, or evaluating schools.


Are educators supposed to "close the gap" or educate children? The Atlanta Public Schools standardized test cheating scandal reflects how the two endeavors have become independent or even antithetical to each other. As the court attempts to determine who's responsible for the Atlanta cheating scandal, I hope they also indict policy that undermines authentic teaching and learning.

Last week, Fulton County District Court indicted 35 educators including former Superintendent Beverly L. Hall for a cheating scheme that included multiple schools, impacting potentially thousands of students. The state's report released by Governor Nathan Deal implicated 178 teachers and principals, 82 confessed to cheating. But who's to blame?

Keep Reading
Articles