Kids Need Real Mom to Show Up, Not TV Reality Show

18 10 2009

UPDATE 1:55 pm EDT – just heard the entire sheriff’s news conference on CNN live, extraordinary. All three boys are said to have had “100% involvement” in the hoax, and what the sheriff called “guilty knowledge” — so one of the felonies with which the the parent/s will be charged is “contributing to the delinquency of minors.”

_____________

Note to Balloon Boy’s Mom: Get a Clue, These are Your Real Kids, Not Some TV Show:

I don’t judge whether your sons swear, pick their noses, fart, burp or jump over banisters. I have two little boys. Glass houses. . .

That said, Mayumi, get a clue.

As of press time Saturday it seems you have either been dragged or agreed to participate in a stunt by a husband who is a child and a women- bashing gasbag. What’s more, he apparently wants your boys to be raging, women-hating gasbags. . .

These are your real live children with their own humiliations and their own storms to chase. Hold on tightly to them. They need at least one parent to keep them from flying too close to the sun.





Kids Too Small to Fail

12 09 2009

The Story That Made Me Tear Up My Prepared Speech at a Big Education Conference:

We live in a country that, one year ago this month, came together with a sense of national emergency, and bailed out banks that were “too big to fail.”

Shouldn’t we also be living in a country that can come together right now and bail out schoolchildren that are too small to be allowed to fail before they have been allowed to succeed?

. . .This is about much more than money. It’s about our priorities as a nation.





Schoolfolk Suffer From Reform Fatigue

30 07 2009

EDUCATION WEEK Commentary
By Mary Kennedy
July 28, 2009

There used to be a saying that if you were not part of the solution, you were part of the problem. The implication was that we all, collectively, were creating the problem, and that the solution required all of us to change together.

But in education, solutions are a big part of our problem. School people are swamped by a deluge of solutions. They suffer from reform fatigue.

. . .There have always been zealous education reformers, of course. But the number and variety of helpful ideas is now so great that the solutions themselves have become Read the rest of this entry »





Rules, Authority, Control: It’s the Power, Stupid

29 07 2009

If the insurance industry wins on health care reform by beating Obama soundly on bigger, more transformative change, it will strengthen and embolden every other big special interest. The energy companies on climate change, the big banks on financial reform, and every other special interest lobbyist Obama has said he would tame, will be laughing at the failure of bigger health reform, secure in their knowledge that nothing has changed in Washington, D.C.

No Legal Overstep Left Behind:

“Most of our politics in America is about the disappointment of not meeting the high goals we set for ourselves.”
–Senator Lamar Alexander, a former U.S. secretary of education trying to explain the legally codified rhetoric of No Child Left Behind.

Plus ca change. . .

Do you experience the conservative homeschooling meme as principled belief in personal freedom and limited government, fueling politics meant to secure and protect equal opportunities for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, for all kinds of Americans as autonomous individuals?

Or do you see conservative homeschooling as centered on religious rules and authority trumping secular authority, politics meant to impose fundamentalist social controls that supplant individual freedom (despite “libertarian” arguments and rhetoric)?

See also:
Thinking About the New Bonfire of the Vanities

Public or Private, Groups Still Govern Our Lives

Sarah Palin “Freeing” Herself From Public Office

And Now The Label “Married” Is In for Further Moral Meddling Read the rest of this entry »





Favorite Daughter Just Touched Down in LONDON

5 07 2009

and thanks to the human magic of international intertubes, I bring you this news from their friends-and-family blog:

en route

“In London for the night”
Posted by penguindust under England, London

Made it!

Horribly, horribly jet lagged. We have to wait five hours and twenty minutes before we can go to sleep. We each got about three hours last night, and our bodies are still on East Coast time, so when the plane landed in Heathrow at “Ten AM” it was really five AM for us.

Plane rides went OK, though, except for this idiot child who sat behind us on the way to Newark and kept gravely insisting to his poor stepfather that his biological father was sure the Mets would make the series. “Or maybe the Angels and the Dodgers. Or the Cardinals and the Dodgers…” This went on quite awhile, and he named several teams that I don’t think can even PLAY each other in the series. Anyway.

Flew out of Newark to lovely fireworks over the Hudson (thanks for the tip, Tim!). First time either of us had ever seen fireworks from above. Seemed like a pretty good send-off.

Incidentally, the Newark airport is awesome, containing every resturant known to man, and about five CNBCNews giftshops – every airport must have at least two to be legally considered an airport, it seems.

Heading to Edinburgh tomorrow!

I made a new tag called “Unschooling Europe” so anyone can follow their adventures from the start. Just Read the rest of this entry »





How Changing the Rules Changes the Game

24 06 2009

If you are homeschooling — read out of the education mainstream — and don’t know about the Kobayashi Maru, you should. Think Harry Potter changing the rules to survive.

Even the artsy Oscars go by grades and scores and competitive rules, you know . . .

Obviously this is power of story for schooling, politics, the economy, families and/or classrooms with five to ten children, marriage, beauty pageants, baseball, you name it:
Read the rest of this entry »





Favorite Daughter Blogs Again, Almost in French!

20 03 2009

. . .if the Grand Tour of Europe is still part of a well-rounded education, even if you get it mostly from PBS? 🙂

“I watched PBS a lot as a kid”:
This sullen, excessively bearded man is my companion, Francois. He will accompany me in restaurant scenes throughout the videocassette. Francois does not respond to any of my questions in French, English, or Franglais, so I can only assume that he is a feral man-bear.

. . .Sometimes, as a way to earn money, starving children will dance or sing or play instruments or rap or rob people on LE METRO. If you bring a camera crew along, the other passengers will clap and pretend to tip them. And that’s the magic and hospitality of the French people.

But we certainly can’t spend the whole day underground! We’d miss one of my other favorite activities – standing on rooftops and scanning the skyline for attractions I will never actually visit.

As you know, FavD is spending a month backpacking in Europe this summer for real, mainly among the French-speaking parts (France and Belgium) so we’ll see what she has to say about the “virtual” version compared to the authentic I-was-there FavD version, on her return. I can’t wait — should be quite an authentic education for ME! 🙂

Unschooling Europe tag