Drs. Fred Newman and Lenora Fulani say pretending can solve the education crisis in America. It is an intriguing idea: children, who have developed the "capacity to pretend to be who they are not", which in this case is a good learner, will also develop the "capacity to become the thing they are pretending to be."
Dialogue on Top Two continues to gain ground, Ricardo Pimentel says that the result of having a TTVG primary forces candidates to have a broader appeal to the voters, which in turn makes elected candidates more bipartisan. More party politics are going on in Rochester, where Democrats attempted to pass a proposal for an independent redistricting commitee...notice how the party "out" of power at the state level is calling for "independent redistricting".... hmmmm....
- Beyond bipartisan imagery (O. Ricardo Pimentel, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel) The top two. Or, we could switch to a top-two-vote-getter (TTVG) primary. In these open primaries, you don't have to vote a straight party ticket, and the two candidates with the most votes - even if they are of the same party - go on to the general election. The result: Candidates have to appeal broadly and moderately throughout campaigns and are, therefore, more bipartisan once elected.
- Independent redistricting proposal for Monroe County voted down in committee (By Erinn Cain, Irondequoit Post) A proposal to have an independent redistricting commission in Monroe County has been voted down in committee, but Democrats said they will continue to fight for what they said will be a nonpartisan process of redrawing the county’s districts.
- New Panel Holds Key to Minority Political Power in California (By Nina Martin, New America Media in California Progress Report) Members include a retired high school principal, an architect, a chiropractor, and an insurance broker—but also a former director of the U.S. Census and a number of people with experience in nonprofits and local government. By law, five are Democrats, five are Republican, and four are either independents or members of smaller parties.
- Obama Woos Center to Embrace His Vision of Future (By GERALD F. SEIB, Wall Street Journal) To those independent voters who abandoned him in November, and to those disillusioned admirers who had begun to doubt that he actually represented the post-partisan leader advertised in 2008, Mr. Obama sketched out a kind of grand political bargain to move the government and the nation in the direction he wants.
- Analysis: Obama, GOP, Frame Debate For 2012 (CBS News) Obama's speech was relatively subdued. "He avoided competing with his audience," said Wayne Fields, a professor at Washington University in St. Louis who studies presidential rhetoric. "They seemed as much a part of the show as he was. The message from both sides was that we're going to work together in a civil society."
- Solving the Education Crisis in America: A Special Report LET'S PRETEND (by Fred Newman, PhD and Lenora Fulani, PhD, All Stars Project, Inc.) Inside the school system, as Harlem Children’s Zone founder Geoffrey Canada will tell you, the pressure on everyone for the kids to do well on tests and to satisfy endless metrics used to evaluate progress leaves very little room for development, which is fundamentally a qualitative process, difficult to measure but obvious when it is present.
- The State of the Union: No Time to Slow Down on Education (Kati Haycock - President, The Education Trust, Huffington Post) Better evaluations can help to raise performance in two ways: by giving teachers the clear expectations they deserve -- with evaluations based on well-defined public standards -- and by using those assessments to identify the supports teachers need in order to improve when they don't measure up. President Obama needs to stay strong on this issue, along with the members of Congress from both parties who insist that we can't afford to continue employing teachers who aren't effective, and we can't afford to continue assigning our least effective teachers to the students who desperately need our best.
- Obama addresses future of education (By DAVID LOWENSTEIN, Daily Trojan, University of Southern California) “We need to teach our kids that it’s not just the winner of the Super Bowl who deserves to be celebrated, but the winner of the science fair; that success is not a function of fame or PR, but of hard work and discipline,” Obama said.