Meeting Betsy DeVos & Why You Should Meet With Those Who Bug You

What you need to know first is that there was little to no drama in my meeting with Betsy DeVos on July 11. For some, that’s a major disappointment. They want — and I’m sympathetic to this desire — confrontation and vindication. Considering the suffering and potential suffering wrought by this Secretary and the Trump... Continue Reading →

What If We’re Designing for Disengagement?

A favorite opening question of mine in professional development workshops is: What do you struggle with the most as a teacher? The answers are almost always: 1. Students’ lack of motivation 2. Students don’t value education 3. Parents aren’t supportive 4. Students don’t believe in themselves 5. Technology distracts students These comments are not facts,... Continue Reading →

Seven Standards for Creating Relationships

One of the mysteries surrounding great teachers is the quality of the relationships they create with their students. Creating relationships with students is a critical attribute of good teaching and student achievement, according to research . Yet given the importance of this skill, there's little that I've found in the way of identifying concrete ways... Continue Reading →

As Long As There Are Teachers, There Is Life

For most of my career in education, easy clichés about school, well-worn phrases about its importance, and rote messages of uplift and inspiration flowed fairly easily from me. Then I went to the Middle East. At the invitation of the State Department’s U.S. Speaker’s program, I visited Lebanon, Israel, and Palestine. And what I saw... Continue Reading →

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