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The Strange Career of the American Achievement Gap
The origins of an annual recognition of American black history, initially dubbed as “Negro History Week,” can be traced to as far back as 1926, despite blacks’ presence in American life since colonial times.
It would not be until the twentieth century that black Americans would acquire a respectable and noticeable residence in American historical scholarship.
Dr. Carter G. Woodson, born to parents of former slaves, was disturbed to find that the history of the African diaspora was absent and ignored in texts, mirroring the inferior position that the black race was assigned at that time. In response, Woodson launched “Negro History Week” to draw national attention to the contributions of black Americans throughout American history. He chose the second week of February for the birthdays of two men who he believed greatly influenced the progressive cause of black America, Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. To choose Lincoln is not surprising; however,…
“What we need are teachers who don’t make excuses,” said Philadelphia Superintendent Arlene Ackerman. “I don’t want to hear about bureaucracy. We have always had bureaucracies…We are looking for people who say ‘I can teach a rock to read.’…If it is not the right place for you, then you should find another place to go.”…read more »
When she told her seven year-old, black daughter that she’d be a nerd and dubbed as “white” in school, my gut expression was a silent, cold look of stern exasperation and “Are you serious?” Filled with hope and admiration at the sight of a young black woman instilling a love of intelluctual curiosity in her daughter…read more »
The power of one is incalculable. 38 days, 750+ hours, 5 averaged hours of sleep per night, 14 wonderful Latino children, a 53 point classroom gain in five weeks, more than 500 awesome people committed with passion and zeal to end the greatest divider and challenge of our time, the achievement gap. And, one; 1 represents…read more »
I finally made it to day one of TFA, and this evening marks day two (today being my first actual whole day, though). The first few hours of TFA Induction, also known as Orientation, were filled with moving in and helping folks move in with large loads of luggage. The weather was hot by Philadelphia…read more »
Alright, folks! So, I just had my first “real” job interview with a great secondary charter school in Philadelphia via telephone. The first-year corps of teachers will be participating in a hiring fair in the first couple of weeks of our arrival for TFA Induction/Institute, or teacher boot camp. This particular institution will be unable to send…read more »