Friday, February 27, 2015

Scott Walker gives us a good old fashion what-the-fuck moment

Governor Scott Walker sent a proposed budget to the Wisconsin legislature with a serious amount of cuts.  I don’t agree with Walker’s slash-and-burn model of budgetary solution but that seems to be the continued idiocy of my political party; use the nuke instead of the scalpel and clean up the wasteland later. 

But pretty standard Republican Gov cutting from the bill.  Yeah, not much to see here.


Governor: Delete the requirement that the Board direct each institution and college campus to incorporate oral and written or electronic information on sexual assault in its orientation program for newly entering students and to supply all students enrolled in the institution or college campus with the same information in either printed or electronic form. Delete the requirement that the Board of Regents submit an annual report to the Legislature regarding the methods used to comply with the above requirement.

Delete the requirement that any person employed at an institution who witnesses a sexual assault on campus or receives a report from a student enrolled in the institution that the student has been sexually assaulted report the assault to the dean of students.

Delete the requirement that each institution report annually to the Department of Justice (DOJ) statistics on sexual assaults and on sexual assaults committed by acquaintances of the victims that occurred on the campus of that institution in the previous years, and that DOJ include those statistics in appropriate crime reports.

[Bill Section: 1171]

What in the actual fuck.

I get politics and I get the game and I get the occasional saber rattling or political sparring with programs.  I don’t get this.  I don’t get this at all.  This is climb up Mount Stupid that could only be reasoned with excuses like “I didn’t read my own bill” or “One of my staffers is plotting my demise” or “Jeb Bush has pictures of me and a Tijuana donkey and made me do it.”  It’s nonsensical to the max. 

Since Republicans needed women votes to win, and this part of this bill pretty much tells the society to ignore the fact that one out of five women in society will be the victim of sexual abuse.  I don’t see how Scott Walker can possibly survive this.  With this kind of crap coming out of his camp, I hope he doesn’t.   

Thursday, February 26, 2015

What the dress really says…

Black and Blue?

White and Gold?

No to both accounts.

On Facebook I’ve been posting that the strips are vertical and on closer inspection say “Jesus is Lord”, “Allahu Akbar”, and “God does not exist.”

If you look closely on the hem, it says “You’ve been trolled.  Signed: Reza Aslan and Stephen Hawking.” 

The Visit

A teacher came into my classroom today.

This wasn’t an exercise in watching me teach, or it wasn’t supposed to be initially.  This is something promoted by teachers and administrators.  The idea is that teachers volunteer to follow students around for one day to remind teachers what it is like to sit in classes for the day while witnessing teaching styles.  This probably totally negates my comment about not watching teachers teach but it’s hard wrap one’s mind about bureaucracy on occasion.  My guess is that it’s a way to motivate teachers to get into other teachers classrooms by hitting the pity cord on following students all day.

I won’t be following a student all day.

I absolutely see the value in watching others teach, and to be perfectly honest I don’t do it enough.  In fact this year I haven’t done it at all.  I could blame a lot of things but when it comes down to it I just don’t have “view other teachers” as part of my current priority list.  It should be.  Teaching is all about gathering best practices and applying those practices to your own classroom style and personality.  If you are a teacher you should be visiting classrooms all over campus.  Visit teachers that are totally unlike you.  ; your mannerisms, your speech, your energy.  Visit teachers that you might not agree with philosophically, weather politically or pedagogically.  Visit a few each year and don’t feel like you need to over-analyze things that you witness in the classroom.  Don’t nit-pick.  Look for little things that make your room better, look for errors that can be overcome in your room, look for changes in the environment that might enhance student experiences. 

Oh, and don’t follow a student for a day.  Or go ahead but I don’t really see the point.  The idea that teachers need to remember what students go through is a tad bit patronizing.  I for one remember what high school was like and don’t necessarily want my students to experience some of my old classes, hence my teaching style.  But to follow the lead of a student for the sake of remembering that experience is sort of a waste of human capital. 

The teacher seemed to get some things out of the experience in my class as I always solicit feedback from visitors.  That’s a good day in my eyes.  But I need to get out more.  I’ve gotten lazy by reading the Interwebz and stealing ideas from the teachers 0nline. 

Time to branch out.      

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

And where have you been

I've been asked more about my blog this week than I can ever remember so I decided to post something. It really is nothing in particular since I've been so tired since, oh I don't know, October. Yes, the basketball season straight tuckered me out. The mix of emotions with success (the kids' reviews of the season have been overwhelmingly positive) and the failures (our record was not great and my self-criticism), the grind of the driving, and my age and mortality have made me more tired than I've been in a long, long time. I'm hopeful for the future but damn tired.

So the blogging has been at a minimum. That has to change. I actually miss writing and reflection a lot and I think it actually has taken a toll on my overall well-bein. Ideas swirl in my head and most never make the trip down my fingers to the keypad and the Cloud. Too much is going on in my classroom, at my school, in my town, in Education, and in my life that deserves commentary and reflection.

Write, right now.