Category: Education


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‘A Pipeline Straight to Jail’

Posted on Oct 11, 2015

By Chris Hedges

Boris Franklin in a classroom at Rutgers. When he was in prison, he was a student under the New Jersey Scholarship and Transformative Education in Prisons Consortium (NJ-STEP), and he is now attending Rutgers under the university’s Mountainview Program. (Michael Nigro)

The defeat of the Harvard University debate team by a team from the Eastern New York Correctional Facility in the Catskills elucidates a truth known intimately by those of us who teach in prisons: that the failure of the American educational system to offer opportunities to the poor and the government’s abandonment of families and children living in blighted communities condemn millions of boys and girls, often of color, to a life of suffering, misery and early death. The income inequality, the trillions of dollars we divert to the war industry, the flight of manufacturing jobs overseas and the refusal to invest in our infrastructure wrecks life after innocent life.

I spent four years as a graduate student at Harvard University. Privilege, and especially white privilege, I discovered, is the primary prerequisite for attending an Ivy League university. I have also spent several years teaching in prisons. In class after class in prison, there is a core of students who could excel at Harvard. This is not hyperbolic, as the defeat of the Harvard debate team illustrates. But poverty condemned my students before they ever entered school. And as poverty expands, inflicting on communities and families a host of maladies including crime, addiction, rage, despair and hopelessness, the few remaining institutions that might intervene to lift the poor up are gutted or closed. Even when students in inner-city schools are not the targets of racial insults, racism worms into their lives because the institutions that should help them are nonexistent or deeply dysfunctional.

I stood outside a prison gate in Newark, N.J., at 7 a.m. last April 24. I waited for the release of one of my students, Boris Franklin, who had spent 11 years incarcerated. I had ridden to the gate with his mother, who spent her time reading Bible verses out loud in the car, and his sister. We watched him walk down the road toward us. He was wearing the baggy gray sweatpants, oversize white T-shirt and white Reeboks that prisoners purchase before their release. Franklin had laid out $50 for his new clothes. A prisoner in New Jersey earns $28 a month working in prison.

 

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End Of The American Dream

The American Dream Is Becoming A Nightmare And Life As We Know It Is About To Change

American Flag - Proud To Be An American - Public DomainIs the United States an “exceptional” nation?  Well, the facts show that we are, but not for the reasons that you may think.  Now that it is election season, we have all sorts of politicians running around proclaiming that America is the greatest nation on the entire planet.  And just this week, Warren Buffett stated that “America’s great now — it’s never been greater“.  But is it actually true?  Is the United States still a great nation?  I would submit that the numbers suggest otherwise.  I love America, and in my opinion there is not much hope for us until we are willing to admit to ourselves just how far we have fallen.  The following are 36 facts that prove that the United States is an “exceptional” nation…

#1 According to a brand new report that was just released by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the United States has the fattest population in the entire industrialized world by a wide margin.

#2 That same report from the OECD also found that we are number one in child obesity.  In fact, at 38 percent our rate of childhood obesity is even higher than our overall rate of obesity.

#3 According to USA Today, the obesity rate in the United States has more than doubled over the past 25 years.

#4The Washington Post has reported that Americans spend an average of 293 minutes a day watching television, which is the most in the world by a wide margin.   And as I have discussed previously, more than 90 percent of the “programming” that we absorb is created by just 6 enormously powerful media corporations.

#5 One study found that the average American spends more than 10 hours a day using some sort of electronic device.

#6 By the time an American child reaches the age of 18, that child will have seen approximately 40,000 murders on television.

#7 The average young American will spend 10,000 hours playing video games before the age of 21.

#8 Out of 22 countries studied by the Educational Testing Service, Americans were dead last in tech proficiency, dead last in numeracy and only two countries performed worse than us when it came to literacy proficiency.

#9 In more than half of all U.S. states, the highest paid public employee in the state is a football coach.

#10 The percentage of wealth owned by middle class adults is lower in North America than it is anywhere else in the world.

#11 Almost half of all Americans (47 percent) do not put a single penny out of their paychecks into savings.

 

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© Andrea Comas
A school district in Tennessee voted to cancel classes and shut down its schools as a result of a budget problem that has left the government unable to fund the facilities. The school director blamed Obamacare for its problems.

Clay County, Tennessee operates three schools total – one high school and two that cover pre-kindergarten through eighth grade – on a $9.5 million budget. However, now more than 1,100 students are sitting at home while officials try to figure out how to reopen the doors. A school board meeting last week saw the board voting 6-4 to close the schools. A separate vote to keep them open failed.

Notably, the county’s financial issues are not new. Clay County Director of Schools Jerry Strong told Associated Press that officials have been struggling with the budget for three years, and blamed county obligations such as state and government mandates, particularly the Affordable Care Act, for the monetary hole.

“Clay County’s inability to generate the revenue to offset the mandates is what’s caused this to come to a head,” he said.

 

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http://www.arizonabushman.com The construction of the solar still.

 

 

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kvue.com

Professor to live in dumpster for year

by JIM BERGAMO / KVUE News and photojournalist MICHAEL MOORE

Bio | Email | Follow: @JimB_KVUE

kvue.com

Posted on February 4, 2014 at 6:28 PM

Updated today at 9:27 AM

AUSTIN — Dumpster diving is taking on a whole new meaning at Huston-Tillotson University. It’s all about a professor and the number “one.” The dean of Huston Tillotson’s University College will live on campus for the next year.

His goal is to live in a space one percent the size of the average home, while using one percent of the water and energy used by an average home and producing only one percent of the waste an average home produces.

“This is what’s called an eight cubic yard dumpster, also with windows and doors,” said Huston-Tillitson environmental science professor Jeff Wilson, Ph.D.

Wilson made those comments back in October when he checked out dumpsters, not for trash or treasure, but rather to size them up as a future home.

“Telling people you have life dreams, you want to live in a dumpster, it brings sympathy your way,” Wilson said.

Read More and Watch Video  Here

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Texas university professor moves into a DUMPSTER on school campus for a year to show students that they can live with less

  • Dr. Jeff Wilson, a Harvard-educated environmental science professor at Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, moved into the dumpster Tuesday
  • The experiment is designed to show students, and the world, that humans can live on a smaller scale and lessen our environmental footprint
  • Thankfully for Wilson, who’s now known as Professor Dumpster, his new home isn’t your ordinary smelly dumpster
  • It will be getting kitted out by his students so it includes creature comforts like a shower, kitchen, bed, WiFi and toilet

By Helen Pow

|

A university professor in Austin, Texas, has moved into a 33sq ft dumpster, which he plans to call home for an entire year. 

Dr. Jeff Wilson, a Harvard-educated environmental science professor, took up residence in the trash can Tuesday in an effort to show students at Huston-Tillotson University, and the world, that humans can live on a smaller scale and lessen our environmental impact.

Thankfully for Wilson, who’s now known as Professor Dumpster, his new home isn’t your ordinary smelly dumpster but will be getting kitted out by his students so it includes creature comforts like a shower, kitchen, bed, WiFi and toilet.

Scroll down for video

Dumpster time: Dr. Jeff Wilson, pictured Tuesday, Dean of the University College and Associate Professor of Biological Sciences at Huston-Tillotson University, moved into a 33-square foot dumpster on the campus of Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, Texas on Tuesday

Dumpster time: Dr. Jeff Wilson, pictured Tuesday, Dean of the University College and Associate Professor of Biological Sciences at Huston-Tillotson University, moved into a 33-square foot dumpster on the campus of Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, Texas on Tuesday

Outfitting the tiny space is step one in the trash can challenge, and the goal is to design the dumpster to be as energy efficient as possible, with solar panels and an energy producing toilet.

‘The idea here is to ultimately show one can have a pretty good life in a dumpster,’ Wilson told Fast Company.

However, the dumpster is starting off modestly. Tuesday night, the 6ft 1in Professor Dumpster posted a picture of his new abode on Twitter with a maroon sleeping bag laid out tightly in the small space with little else in view.

If occasionally Wilson needs a break from the box, students can opt to take his place for the night.

One student, Evette Jackson, has already signed up.

Mod cons: Thankfully for Wilson, pictured, his new home isn't your ordinary smelly dumpster but a special version customized by his students that includes creature comforts like a shower, kitchen, bed, WiFi and toilet

Mod cons: Thankfully for Wilson, pictured, his new home isn’t your ordinary smelly dumpster but a special version customized by his students that includes creature comforts like a shower, kitchen, bed, WiFi and toilet

Not very big: Wilson posted a picture of his new home on Twitter Tuesday with the comment 'Bird's eye view of dumpster home at bedtime'

Not very big: Wilson posted a picture of his new home on Twitter Tuesday with the comment ‘Bird’s eye view of dumpster home at bedtime’

‘I think it’s pretty intriguing,’ she told KVUE. ‘It’s pretty cool. I want to live in it too.’

After the year of dumpster living is up, Wilson plans on taking the bin across the United States, educating students about the possibility of following in his ‘less is more’ footsteps.

Wilson said the project idea came to him two years ago while he was sipping a latte at Starbucks.

‘I looked out the window into the parking lot and saw an eight-yard dumpster and had some sort of strange flash that I was definitely moving into a dumpster,’ he told Fast Company.

So when the lease ran out on his lovely, full-sized, apartment a year later, he posted an announcement on Facebook, which read: ‘Starting at 6pm, I will be selling all of my home furnishings, clothes, kitchen appliances, and everything else in the apartment for $1 an item.’

Help: Wilson, right, had help from students and other educators including Dr Karen Magid, pictured

Help: Wilson, right, had help from students and other educators including Dr Karen Magid, pictured

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Ethan Young

Published on Nov 7, 2013

Recorded at the Knox County School Board Regular Meeting
November 6, 2013

Share this video with and spread the message: we will not accept these issues with education.

Full video available here: http://kcstv.knoxschools.org/modules/…

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Common Core Standards Math Lesson Example

TeachnKidsLearn

Uploaded on Dec 6, 2011

Provided by Teach n’ Kids Learn – For more information contact PD@TeachnKidsLearn.com.

This lesson is centered on helping students with understanding the concept of a function. To explore growing patterns using three representations: pictures or drawings, table values, and a rule. To identify the relationships between the step number and the value at that step in a growing pattern as a foundation for the concept of function.

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breakingtheset

Published on Nov 15, 2013

Abby Martin speaks with Peter Joseph, founder to the Zeitgeist Movement about the philosophy behind the organization, the unsustainability of the current economic system and the model proposed by the movement for a sustainable future that works harmoniously with nature.

LIKE Breaking the Set @ http://fb.me/BreakingTheSet
FOLLOW Abby Martin @ http://twitter.com/AbbyMartin

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Becky Big Canoe: Become self-sufficient in food and housing with EnviroNative Training Initiatives

Alfred Lambremont Webre Alfred Lambremont Webre

Published on Nov 15, 2013

VIDEO: Becky Big Canoe: Become sustainable in food and housing with EnviroNative Training Initiatives
WATCH ON YOU TUBE:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0clxix…

VANCOUVER, B.C. – In an interview with Alfred Lambremont Webre, Becky Big Canoe of Ontario, Canada describes becoming sustainable in food and housing with EnviroNative Training Initatives.

EnviroNative Training Initiatives, which Becky Big Canoe founded, is a not-for-profit organization set up to design and deliver training programs in food security, entrepreneur skills and natural building. Their target clientele is First Nations women and at risk youth.

You can support this initiative in self sufficiency by voting at:

http://www.avivacommunityfund.org/ide…

Information:

EnviroNative Training Initatives

https://www.facebook.com/environative…

Becky Big Canoe

https://www.facebook.com/becky.bigcanoe

Thank you.

Becky Big Canoe: Become sustainable in food and housing with EnviroNative Training Initiatives

http://bit.ly/1ihreLN

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The New American

Thursday, 24 October 2013 10:15

Written by 

In a brief video on the Obama administration-pushed nationalization of education through Common Core standards, part of an ongoing series about the scheme produced by The New American, veteran educator Mary Black highlights yet another troubling element of the national educational agenda. Considering the teaching styles and the standards themselves, she explained, Common Core could lead to potentially disastrous effects for future generations of Americans and the nation itself.

According to Black, who has 40 years of teaching experience and became an expert on Common Core amid her tireless efforts to expose it, schooling under the controversial standards amounts to teaching students what to think — instead of how to think. For America, that means big problems in the future, because the perpetuation of liberty and self-government requires citizens who know how to think critically and independently.

In the short video, Black draws attention to some of the many alarming facets of Common Core. Among the concerns: The fact that the standards are copyrighted by the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). That means the public will have “no chance to change and alter them,” explained Black, who also serves as the student development director for FreedomProject Education, an online K-12 school offering a classical education based on Judeo-Christian values rather than Common Core.

“The standards, when you look at them, encourage a very robotic style of teaching,” she continued. “Supposedly, we’re told, they encourage independent thinking and more critical thinking. But when the standards require that the students document statements from reading material with statements that are from the reading material, it is definitely a fact that students are being taught what to think and not how to think. Truly critical analysis means tying things together that are in the knowledge base of a student, rather than just repeating what’s in the written material.”

The proof is already out there “that the curriculum is going to be very agenda-driven,” she said. Among other concerns, that means that those who own the copyright “can control what our students are reading and studying.” That, in turn, “leads to indoctrination,” Black said. “With this comes the ability for those who control the Common Core — the contents, the copyright for Common Core — to control what our students think. It’s very much within the realm of possibility.”

The dangers, however, go even further, she said. The United States, with its government founded upon the U.S. Constitution, requires an educated population — citizens capable of thinking and reasoning logically and independently. “The danger of a group of students, such as we’re educating now, not having this ability — being dependent on being told what to think and being led rather than acting independently — is a true danger to our country,” she said.

The teaching methods themselves, meanwhile, are also highly problematic, Black explained, pointing to those used in math as another example. Dubbed “Pair and Share,” the scheme involves having students teach and share math concepts with each other. “The idea of Pair and Share is very socialistic in nature, because, again, students are being told what to think — not how to think — and are not developing that independence of standing up for the answer that they believe is correct and to rely upon their own God-given abilities,” Black said.

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