Thanks so much for visiting me here on my newly revised website. Along with an altogether new look, the changes allow me to more readily offer you timely, informative articles, websites to visit, and even quotes to use in your teaching. There’s also, of course, my free, monthly The School-Wise Newsletter, keeping readers up-to-date on all that’s happening in education.

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Finista: A Secretive Instagram Spinoff Garnering Teen Attention

26/01/2018   |   No Comments »

Fotosearch_Cheating_k19153317As reported by Fiza Pirani of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Finista, the latest social media platform gaining teen attention, is a combo of the words fake and Instagram. As she explains, “It is essentially a fake second Instagram account cultivated for a much smaller, private audience… As opposed to a real Instagram account (Rinsta), it features a much more unfiltered experience.”

And that should be a red flag for parents, for all of us.

More popular with girls than boys, it offers “a safe space from nosy family members, educators, or even future employers.” Like Facebook, many Instagram posts paint rosy versions of users’ lives; that, however, is not the case with Finista. There, posts reflect the real deal but are hidden from adults who can intercede and pull the plug–like parents.

Its allure is that it Read the rest of this entry »

9 Upsetting Education News Items

06/12/2017   |   1 Comment

Charters and private school vouchers continue taking center stage, along with the Common Core and all the ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) state proposals now in the hands of the U.S. Department of Education. At the same time, tech keeps increasing its domination over instruction and our children’s bingeing on social media is, in all-too-many cases, ending in depression and suicide.

And it just keeps going from there:

  1. Taxpayer-funded Brooklyn College says its students “get triggered” by police on campus and wants them to only use distant, poorly maintained bathrooms. Meanwhile, a petition is now calling for the removal of all police from the campus.
  2. The Penn State frat boys who gave a pledge at least 18 drinks in less than 90 minutes and then tried to delete the video evidence. In all, 26 now face charges in Tim Piazza’s death.
  3. At least 45 Harrisburg, Pennsylvania teachers resigned between July and October and more did so since October. The reason: student violence.
  4. Baltimore teachers protested a lack of discipline in some schools, thus putting them in harm’s way.
  5. On state tests, 33% of Baltimore’s high schools had NOT ONE student scoring proficient in math, and 6 had just 1% in that range.
  6. 19 of NYC Mayor DeBlasio’s $582 million Renewal Program’s 28 schools missed their target graduation rates, and saw 6 of them fall.
  7.  Called “digital self-harm,” about 6% of our 12- through 1-year-olds have bullied themselves online; these children are 12 times more likely to have been cyberbullied at some point.
  8.  The U.S. Department of Education is warning parents and teen to carefully consider the data they give to schools, as criminals are threatening to do violence and to do release sensitive school records.
  9. BrainCo has no invented a headset that measures a student’s brain’s activity an transmits the information instantly to the teacher.

And so it goes…