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Mon Jan 14, 2013, 03:49 AM

 

Matt Damon's mom declines education award because of NEA collaboration with Teach 4 America

Matt Damon and his mother, Nancy Carlsson-Paige, have declined a nomination for the Friend of Education award from the National Education Association's Massachusetts arm -- because of the NEA's collaboration with Teach For America on a USA Today op-ed.

In a letter Wednesday to NEA President Dennis Van Roekel, Carlsson-Paige, a professor of early childhood education at Lesley University, says that she and Damon had originally planned to accept the nomination when they discussed the possibility over the summer. But in December, Van Roekel and TFA Founder and CEO Wendy Kopp co-authored a piece in USA Today on how to improve America's teachers.

"I have decided that because of your collaboration with TFA, it would not be wise for me or for Matt to be nominated for the Friend of Education Award," Carlsson-Paige writes in her letter. "I regret this turn of events."

Van Roekel has taken some heat since the op-ed's publication. Education blogger Anthony Cody wrote on Education Week that Roekel is sending mixed messages about teacher preparation, pointing out that the NEA president writes in his USA Today piece that "not all teachers are getting the high-quality preparation they need to excel with students in the classroom." "Does Mr. Van Roekel believe that Teach For America's five or six week long training is adequate preparation?" Cody asks.

The September presentation by Duncan, Van Roekel and Kopp introduced a teacher preparation package that seeks to alter the teacher training process by basing the ratings of teachers' colleges on the outcomes of graduates and their students. It would also require student tests as an indicator of student growth and teacher effectiveness from teachers produced by preparation programs.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/05/matt-damon-nancy-carlsson_n_1187001.html

19 replies, 1960 views

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Arrow 19 replies Author Time Post
Reply Matt Damon's mom declines education award because of NEA collaboration with Teach 4 America (Original post)
HiPointDem Jan 2013 OP
Katashi_itto Jan 2013 #1
UnrepentantLiberal Jan 2013 #2
oberliner Jan 2013 #3
theaocp Jan 2013 #5
oberliner Jan 2013 #6
theaocp Jan 2013 #8
oberliner Jan 2013 #9
obamanut2012 Jan 2013 #13
oberliner Jan 2013 #17
ReRe Jan 2013 #4
xchrom Jan 2013 #7
LWolf Jan 2013 #10
Starry Messenger Jan 2013 #11
WinkyDink Jan 2013 #12
oberliner Jan 2013 #18
obamanut2012 Jan 2013 #14
Jefferson23 Jan 2013 #15
CE5 Jan 2013 #16
oberliner Jan 2013 #19

Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 05:33 AM

1. If I had a Mom, I would want her to be like that

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 05:34 AM

2. Good for her.

 

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 05:50 AM

3. You agree with her opposition to Teach for America?

Personally, I'm not sure that I do.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #3)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 06:27 AM

5. Please elaborate. n/t

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Response to theaocp (Reply #5)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 06:41 AM

6. OK

She is critical of Teach for America in the quotations included in this article. While I understand her concerns, I do think that many people who sign up for the program are hard-working dedicated individuals who contribute positively to the schools at which they are assigned to work. I'm not sure the program doesn't have enough positives to make it worthwhile.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #6)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:19 AM

8. Is this just your gut instinct

or do you have any evidence for your feelings? Five weeks is pretty scant preparation, no matter how strong one's intentions.

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Response to theaocp (Reply #8)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:30 AM

9. Admittedly anecdotal

I've spoken to some people who have been involved in the program as teachers.

Also, in independent schools, there are many excellent teachers who have not gone through the official teacher training. Most just have academic degrees in their subject of expertise.

I think some folks are capable of becoming effective teachers with a college degree, the right attitude, and five weeks of prep. Whereas other folks are not going to be all that effective even with the requisite teacher training.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #6)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:08 AM

13. TFA is NOT a positive for public schools

On purpose.

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Response to obamanut2012 (Reply #13)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:39 AM

17. In no cases?

Couldn't it sometimes with the right people in place?

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 06:01 AM

4. Further privatizing of education...

... that's what this is the indication of. More meddling by profiteers that do not care a flip about the education of our children. Little by little by little, chipping away. America is disappearing before our eyes. At what point are we going to change the name of our country from the United States of America to the United Corporate States of America? Hats off to Matt and his mother for refusing the NEA-TFA corporate award!

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 06:53 AM

7. du rec. nt

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 08:42 AM

10. Two thumbs up

for them both.


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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:00 AM

11. K&R

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:04 AM

12. Having earned both undergraduate and graduate degrees in Ed., I can safely say

many courses are not worth the time. The one I learned most from was "The History of Education," because it was, you know, HISTORY.

Not saying I agree with T4A, because its raison d'etre is loathsome (privatizing; breaking unions; turning teaching into a trade-school subject); but I don't cotton to "Education" degrees, either. IMO, teachers should get degrees in academic subjects (I think we all know what they comprise), with education courses taken as post-graduate studies AT UNIVERSITY (as the British might say). Like law or medicine.

If I'd had any guts, I would've just gone for the M.A. in English.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #12)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:40 AM

18. Good and important points

In some ways "teacher training" and "education degrees" are as much a racket as anything else. I have also heard tell that much of the coursework in some of these programs is less than useful.

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:08 AM

14. good for her

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:10 AM

15. Good for her.

K&R

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Response to HiPointDem (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:12 AM

16. Bob McDonnell is behind Teach For America

 

That should tell you all you need to know.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2013/01/10/parsing-virginia-gov-bob-mcdonnells-education-agenda/


In his State of the Commonwealth address Tuesday night, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) proposed a constitutional amendment that would make it easier for charter schools to open, an A-F grading system to rate schools, the use of Teach For America members, and more.

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Response to CE5 (Reply #16)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 01:35 PM

19. So are countless Democrats

The list is quite extensive.

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