Saturday, September 02, 2006

Stand Up for Our Students

I took a few minutes (okay, hours) to go through my Bloglines reading last night (okay, only a little bit of it - but more than I had in a long time) and stumbled across four different posts that still seemed to be very related to each other. Let's see if you agree.

The first and second posts were both by Jeff Utecht:
. . . For most schools technology integration is optional. So I am supporting an optional program. I know it’s been said before but: As long as teachers have the option to integrate technology, some will opt not to . . . This is why I call us Transition Techies. We are the technology educators who are faced with this challenge to change a system.

. . . I’ve agreed with his concept of contemporary literacy and believe it is the literacy of a new world we must be teaching. Not integrating it, teaching it!. . . And once you have those new technologies in place it becomes that much easier to teach contemporary literacy, in fact you are forced to teach it. . . We need to spread this message outside of the technology circle . . .
The third post was by the amazingly prolific blogger Vicki Davis:
By any means necessary must become the battle cry of teachers.
We will educate by any means necessary!
We will leave behind our preconceived notions!
We will go into territory where we do not feel comfortable!
We will go where our students congregate and interact!
We will do what it takes to reach the most disconnected and connected generation in history.
Education is a perpetual crisis that always leaves us one generation from anarchy!
Teaching must be done by
people of character
who have education of their topic as their aim
and any means necessary as their methodology.
The fourth was a post by Jim Gates that pointed me to The main page is a very interesting Flash presentation, but also be sure to click on the I Want to Know More link at the top of the page.
STAND UP is a community-based response to America's education crisis.
We will STAND UP for great high schools that educate all students well.
We will STAND UP for America's future.

STAND UP is a national campaign to:
  • Give parents the tools they need to get their kids the education they deserve.
  • Mobilize all Americans to engage in the solution and demand policies that help all students succeed.
  • Ensure students receive the support they need to graduate from high school ready for college, work, and citizenship.

“ . . . the challenge to change the system . . .”

“ . . . the literacy of a new world . . .”

“ . . . the battle cry of teachers . . .”

“ . . . by any means necessary . . .”

“ . . . response to America’s education crisis . . .”

“We will stand up . . .”

It appears we are in the middle of a battle. A battle between “education as usual” and “education as it should be.” A battle between the needs of the adults and the needs of the students. A battle between the literacies of the 20th century and the literacies of the 21st.

Are we ready to educate by any means necessary? Are we truly ready to stand up for our students?

1 comment:

  1. It is down to us, as educators, to make the move. It's not going to happen in a top-down fashion (nor should it, since we are the ones closest to the pulse of the next generation of citizens and leaders). Makes me think about the President's message this past week--something along the lines that the battle in Iraq is the staging ground for the greatest idealogical conflict in the twenty-first century. Perhaps, we should look closer at ourselves as a country and see the fast-approaching crisis of how we educate vs. how we should educate as the greatest idealogical challenge of this new century. These posts support the theory that as educators, we need to meet the students where they are before taking them further. I also like the comment about educators being people of character. Virginia Woolf states that to be a great teacher, one must first be a great liver [not the meat]. We've got to be role models both of mind and heart.