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Learning at its Best

Oh no, we don’t talk about that! now shhh….

Over the past few years, public discussion, and outrage over the blatant patterns of ethical and immoral misconduct in our nation’s schools have seemingly went untouched by some of the blogospheres most relevant education bloggers. From teenage girls being forced out of school because of unwed pregnancies, to Gay, Trans, and Lesbian students being openly humiliated, to schools (charter, public, and voucher) using evasive tactics to control populations of students of color. The list of unjust atrocities goes on but the message is clear, and yet when these occurrences arise the blogosphere is quiet or whispering about them, and when someone does raise the topic, its following discussion is usually absent.

If anyone is going to fix education and if anyone is going to save education from the campaign to transform it into a private industry that will become synonymous with the incarceration industry then we must not remain too scared to address the amount of social injustice that resides within. We cannot go attacking the opposition when our own house is in a state of disaster because then the whole premise of argument is going to be undermined.

So the question to this, is when are we going to embark on a serious and broad discussion about educations issues with social injustice…or are we going to keep retaining the “it’s not the time to discuss this” attitude? Because, if we are then we might as well give in to the corporatist panacea that consumes this nations children and their educators and since I know that’s not what most of us want then we have to stop being so afraid to call things as we perceive them. Because a time will arrive when we no longer have control of the dialogue, when students are pushed into a new pipeline, and when our nations public school come under the helm of 20 something TFA’ers who see it as a “do good” project.


3 thoughts on “Oh no, we don’t talk about that! now shhh….

  1. where and how can we talk about it? I had hope for facebook and social media, but it still doesn’t seem to be the right forum. thanks

    Posted by Elly | December 15, 2012, 11:45 pm
  2. I have a couple of thoughts as to why. The first is that many school communities are simply insular. They prefer to think of themselves as “nice little places” where “this sort of thing can’t happen” and bury their heads in the sand when it comes to anything negative. “That’s not my kid” accompanies lines about “community values.” You’re pregnant? Well, go away and have your baby quietly because having you around with a visible baby bump makes our school look bad. You’re gay? Well, why do you have to throw that in everyone’s face?

    Second, some of those who could do something about it are often scared to for fear of reprisal. There are so many instances where teachers are reprimanded for “talking out of school” on the internet (via blogs, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) that when the time does come to point out a problem within a specific school or community, many choose to remain silent because they don’t need a reason to be fired, especially in an environment of “accountability” where it seems that their jobs are holding on by a thread as it is.

    Posted by Tom Panarese | December 16, 2012, 4:17 pm

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