Despite the lack of a new post in over a month, please know that this blog is still alive and well. I’m no longer a classroom teacher, so I won’t be able to provide up-to-date anecdotes. But know this: I will continue to use this space to comment on issues in education, for whatever it’s worth.
In a sense, [ABCDE] might better be referred to now as “A Blog Covering Dilemmas in Education.” I no longer live in D.C. (I miss it much!); I’m knee-deep in my first year of law school. Having left DCPS, and having transitioned into a (new) world where I’m thinking constantly about rules, standards, laws and policies that affect society, I think it makes perfect sense to expand this blog’s scope, even just in name.
“Dilemma” is an appropriate word to replace “D.C.” In its strictest sense, it implies an “either-or” situation. Invariably, we come across these in our debates over education today. One is either for or against teachers unions. One is for or against merit pay. One is for or against standardized testing. The level of polarization in our education debate rivals that of any other issue. “Dilemma” recognizes that.
On the other hand, a looser reading of “dilemma” accepts that the problem of education has many shades and is by no means binary. Despite the current “whatever it takes” rhetoric, no school or district can succeed simply by going “all-out.” Rather, there is a golden mean between the two ends of the spectrum on each sub-issue that policymakers and educators must find.
Finally, I actually wrote “dilemmas” not “dilemma.” Though I often have talked generally about the “problem of education” (e.g. in the paragraph before this one), really, that’s just an oversimplification. The world of education is filled with dilemmas, each distinct, but each also overlapping with and influencing others. A relevant question is, do we focus on solving them one-by-one or do we take a holistic approach and attempt to solve them in one fell swoop?
It is my hope that, going forward, I can continue trying to make sense of, and offering solutions to, these dilemmas.
And yet, despite this “thinkaloud,” I think I’ll end up leaving the original title (“A Blog Covering D.C. Education [ABCDE]“) in the banner. I’ll do this to avoid confusing all the millions of readers that I have and have had. Cheers.