Pat Greco in WI! More good news.

Just in. Colleague Pat Greco named 2017 Wisconsin school superintendent of the year. Forward thinker. Innovator. Strong and principled leader.

Pierce Frauenheim: Character Builder

See this exciting story about Pierce Frauenheim and his remarkable legacy and incredible family. Besides the terrific sports record of Pierce and his family, this article hints at Pierce’s effect on athletes and their character. But it does not go into the depth of his long career of building strong character in so many athletes under his coaching leadership.

“Bad Actors” must be held accountable!

Important piece by CTAC’s Joe Frey is linked below. To make education work for every student in America, we must have a strong array of options and meaningful choice in every community. Compelling non-profit and for-profit offerings are a must. But, when for-profit interests in financial results trump quality and academic results, that is just as bad as adult-interests being allowed to trump decisions that are best for kids also often seen in governmental and non-profit offerings. All “bad actors” must be answerable. See what you think. (Cut and paste into browser.)

Are we Turning the Corner on Bullying?

Regarding the persistent problems of school bullying, I wonder if we are turning the corner?  Are kids standing up to these challenges in sufficient numbers?  Are we more regularly drilling to the core of personal and emotional problems driving these dangerous behaviors of the perpetrators?  This video clip give me hope…

Teacher/Academic Arrogance or?

Check out Jay M’s OpEd in Washington Post. When it comes to high school kids demonstrating mastery of a course or unit of study, come on now…

No one thinks we should foster cheating, but don’t we know enough about varying forms of demonstrating mastery?! It doesn’t have to always be answering questions on a teacher- or company-made test. Especially in the case of recovered drop outs and those who have a testing phobia we know about portfolios, project-based outcomes, etc.

Jay’s work is often spot-on. This piece needs a retraction. We can do better in the assessment of kids’ learning and demonstration of mastery.

Leaders Abandoning Trump

Noting all these corporate and other leaders abandoning Trump’s various advisory committees and task forces. Can’t decide whether this is a good move from a leadership standpoint, or whether it would have been a better idea to attend the meetings, and confront POTUS and his staff on the multitude of issues they don’t get. And certainly don’t get right.

Here’s a latest one…

CICS Celebrates 20 years

20 years of great work for mostly underserved, under-represented kids in Chicago, CICS celebrated yesterday at the UIC Pavilion. Our Distinctive Schools team is proud to be a part of it all. Anxious for the work to continue in these college prep focused campuses. Have a great school year.

Emotional Engagement, Looking Beyond Test Scores

In a recent article David Brooks states, “Education is one of those spheres where the heart is inseparable from the head.” If students are to succeed, the best possible conditions for them, for anyone, is to come from a home where they feel safe and secure. Experiencing strong attachments to family and friends allow them to bond with teachers and parents. They need positive reinforcement and some sense of identity, some confidence about their own worth and some sense of agency about their own future.

Today many students come to school lacking a secure emotional base. In the first five years the kind of educational environment that surrounds a child is the most important for effective nurture.

Teachers who motivate their students to show up every day and throw themselves into school life may not even realize how good they are, because emotional engagement is not something we measure and stress.


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