Thursday, December 21, 2006

Prioritizing Education from the Ground Up

In my quest to become an informed blogger in this new endeavor, I have been trying to read lots of blogs. Mostly a few articles from each and then move on... Except for the few blogs that inspired me to begin blogging myself (see Dave's, Wobblie's and DR's) I have found a few interesting posts, but nothing that really shook me. But then, I found the Education Policy Blog which looks fascinating.

These are people who believe that we should be "examining education from a social foundations perspective." It is really amazing. Among other posts on this blog are a five-part series titled Community Organizing and Urban Education and a summary of the AFT's report on the deteriorating conditions of schools in the United States (the summary can be found on the Education Policy Blog and also on teacher ken's DailyKos Diary. This looks like an amazing collection of people who are really commited to the endeavor of teaching from kindergarten through graduate degrees.

It brings up an interesting question for me as I have worked on various projects in the AFT-Michigan: how can we work together in this country to build an education system that is just and fair? It seems to me like it is always difficult to answer the working together part for me. For some reason higher education is often pitted against K-12 education ("More money for them is less money for you").

I think that the answer can come in focusing on the students. K-12 students become our students in higher education (not all, but many). I believe that any differences can be hammered out if we all agree to work from a common context and I believe that this frame gives us a common context that we can all commit to. It is obviously something that needs a lot more thought, and thinking through how to get groups to work together is more than a simple framing of the subject, but I believe that this can be a way to begin that conversation. If there is anyone out there interested in commenting on what they see as a way to possibly get this to work, please comment!


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