Showing posts with label announcement. Show all posts
Showing posts with label announcement. Show all posts

Saturday, March 29, 2014

New Issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy Now Online and Upcoming Seminar



The new issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy, on the theme "Who Defines the Public in Public Education?," can be found here. The idea for this issue's theme was sparked by the ruthless and seemingly politically motivated ban on Mexican American Studies in the Tucson, Arizona school district, after years of the MAS curriculum being taught in Tucson without controversy. All of the authors included in this issue speak to the questions, both pedagogical and philosophical, arising in the wake of the Mexican American Studies ban in Tucson. The article in the new issue by former Tucson MAS teacher Curtis Acosta addresses the root of this controversy and Mr. Acosta will be joining the Western Washington University community in a discussion of his article, via webcam, on May 14th, 4-6pm. The upcoming seminar is sponsored by Western's Center for Education, Equity and Diversity, as well as the Journal of Educational Controversy and the Woodring College of Education. (Watch an interview with Curtis Acosta conducted last fall by JEC editor Lorraine Kasprisin and associate editor John Richardson here.)

The article titles, authors, and affiliations of the authors for this volume of the Journal of Educational Controversy are:

"Ask Not Only Who Defines the Curriculum: Rather Ask Too What the Curriculum Aim Should Be"
Walter Feinberg
Charles Hardie Professor, Emeritus
The University of Illinois, Champaign/Urbana

"Religious Citizens in a Secular Public: Separate, Equal?"
John F. Covaleskie
University of Oklahoma

"Reading NCLB as a Form of Structural Violence"
Kerry Burch
Northern Illinois University

"Critical Study of the Concept of 'Public Identity' as Manifested in Postmodernist Versions of Critical Pedagogy"
Boaz Tsabar
Hebrew University, Israel

"The Public and Its Problem: Dewey, Habermas, and Levinas"
Guoping Zhao
Oklahoma State University

"Attack of the Cyborgs: 'Economic Imperialism' and the Human Deficit in Educational Policy-Making and Research"
Scott Ellison
University of Tennessee

"Middle School Students, Slam Poetry and the Notion of Citizenship"
Anthony M. Pellegrino, George Mason University
Kristien Zenkov, George Mason Univeristy
Gerardo Aponte-Martinez, Michigan State University

"Dangerous Minds in Tucson: The Banning of Mexican American Studies and Critical Thinking in Arizona"
Curtis Acosta
Former Teacher of Mexican American Studies in the Tucson Unified School District

Editorial: "Who Defines the Public in Pubic Education"
Lorraine Kasprisin
Editor of the Journal of Educational Controversy
Western Washington University

"Interview with Ari Palos, Film Director of Precious Knowledge" 
Celina Meza
JEC Editorial Staff
Western Washington University

Thursday, March 6, 2014

New "Call for Papers" for 10th Anniversary Features an Open Issue

10th YEAR ANNIVERSARY ISSUE OF THE JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL CONTROVERSY FEATURES AN OPEN ISSUE

CALL FOR PAPERS

In previous issues of the Journal of Educational Controversy, we have defined a contemporary controversy and asked our authors to examine the issue. For our 10th year anniversary issue, we have decided to have an open issue where authors can define their own controversy. We ask authors to consider these points in developing their ideas:

1. Define an educational controversy – formal or informal education, K-12, college or university, adult education, secular or religious education, or larger philosophical issues in the educational ethos of a society or a culture. The issue can be a contemporary one or a perennial one that is revisited.

2. Explain the significance of the problem.

3. Provide an historical and philosophical framework for the controversy.

4. Lay out the different arguments surrounding the controversy.

5. Examine the underlying assumptions and resulting implications of the different positions.

6. Provide suggestions to resolve the issues raised and provide supporting arguments.

We remind authors that we publish controversies that are deeply embedded in our conceptual frameworks. The journal tries to distinguish between surface controversies and latent or depth controversies.

For example, schools engage students in controversies all the time and are embedded themselves in controversies. Most of these controversies engage us in disagreements on a surface level. That is not to say that these discussions are unimportant – only that they take place with assumptions that remain unstated and beliefs that remain largely hidden or submerged. And so we talk about learning outcomes, required competencies, and the kind of rubrics we should be using to assess student outcomes. The journal tries to go deeper by examining the very frameworks in which all these surface controversies arose – to get at our underlying assumptions and beliefs.

Here is our statement from the journal's introductory page:

The purpose of this peer reviewed journal is to provide a national and international forum for examining the dilemmas and controversies that arise in teaching and learning in a pluralistic, democratic society. Because many of the tensions in public school and university policies and practices are deeply rooted in the tensions inherent in the philosophy of a liberal democratic state, many of the value conflicts in public schools and universities can only be understood within the context of this larger public philosophy. In effect, the conflicting assumptions underlying our public philosophy frame our questions, define our problems and construct the solutions that shape our practices, policies, and research agendas. This journal will try to help clarify that public debate and deepen an understanding of its moral significance.

PUBLICATION DATE: FALL 2015
DEADLINE FOR MANUSCRIPTS: JANUARY 1, 2015

Friday, November 15, 2013

10th Year Anniversary Issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy will Feature an Open Issue

Since our inaugural issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy, we have been publishing scenarios around controversial issues in education. With the 10th anniversary of the journal coming up in 2015, we thought we would have an open issue. We invite authors to submit their own controversial issue and their response to it. Just remember that we are interested in controversies that are deeply embedded in our conceptual frameworks. The journal tries to distinguish between surface controversies and latent or depth controversies.

Schools engage students in controversies all the time and are embedded themselves in controversies. Most of these controversies engage us in disagreements on a surface level. That is not to say that these discussions are unimportant – only that they take place with assumptions that remain unstated and beliefs that remain largely hidden or submerged. And so we talk about learning outcomes, required competencies, and the kind of rubrics we should be using to assess student outcomes. The journal tries to go deeper by examining the very frameworks in which all these surface controversies arose – to get at our underlying assumptions and beliefs.

Here is our statement from the journal's introductory page:

The purpose of this peer reviewed journal is to provide a national and international forum for examining the dilemmas and controversies that arise in teaching and learning in a pluralistic, democratic society. Because many of the tensions in public school and university policies and practices are deeply rooted in the tensions inherent in the philosophy of a liberal democratic state, many of the value conflicts in public schools and universities can only be understood within the context of this larger public philosophy. In effect, the conflicting assumptions underlying our public philosophy frame our questions, define our problems and construct the solutions that shape our practices, policies, and research agendas. This journal will try to help clarify that public debate and deepen an understanding of its moral significance.

We are announcing this issue early to give time for authors to think about a controversy they would like to write about. We will send out official notices later.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Call for Papers for the Journal of Educational Controversy

We invite authors to contribute to our Volume 9 Number 1 issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy on the theme: "Challenging the Deficit Model and the Pathologizing of Children: Envisioning Alternative Models."  This issue will once again be co-edited with Susan Donnelly, who was guest editor for our issue on "The Education and Schools our Children Deserve."

CALL FOR PAPERS

THEME: Challenging the Deficit Model and the Pathologizing of Children: Envisioning Alternative Models

CONTROVERSY ADDRESSED:


Martin Seligman, founder of the field of positive psychology, has said that, “Modern psychology has been co-opted by the disease model. We've become too preoccupied with repairing damage when our focus should be on building strength and resilience, especially in children.” Is this also true of modern education? Political and pedagogical responses, from the “War on Poverty” through “No Child Left Behind” to address the educational gaps in academic achievement of historically marginalized and neglected groups (the poor, minorities and children with disabilities), were often deeply rooted in a language of cultural deprivation and special needs. Has this deficit model begun to surreptitiously creep into our educational discourse for all children? Have we become too focused on needs and deficiencies and forgotten that children also have capacities and strengths? Does the current emphasis on accountability and standardized testing contribute to the pathologizing of children? We invite authors to respond critically to this argument, envision alternative models, examine historical causes and precedents, analyze political and social ramifications, and share real life stories on the influence these ways of thinking have on the classroom and on the learning as experienced by students.

DEADLINE FOR MANUSCRIPTS: APRIL 1, 2014

PUBLICATION DATE: FALL 2014

Saturday, May 11, 2013

15th Annual Educational Law and Social Justice Forum will Feature the Journal of Educational Controversy’s Issue on the School-to-Prison Pipeline on May 17th

The 15th Annual Educational Law and Social Justice Forum will be held on Friday, May 17 at 4 p.m. in Miller Hall, Room 005 on the Western Washington University campus.

The forum is free and open to the public and is sponsored by the Journal of Educational Controversy and the Center for Education, Equity and Diversity.

The theme of the forum will be “The School-to-Prison Pipeline and the School-to-Deportation Pipeline.”

The school-to-prison pipeline refers to a national trend in which thousands of students each year are funneled through the public schools and into the juvenile justice system as a result of school policies and practices that increasingly criminalize students rather than educate them. It is a problem that has disproportionally affected students of color, students with disabilities, and students from impoverished and disenfranchised communities.

The School-to-Deportation Pipeline refers to obstacles and fears, specifically of personal or family detention and deportation that undocumented students face in a time of enhanced immigration enforcement, new laws criminalizing immigrants, and stigmatization by public rhetoric around ethnicity and nationality. The journal looks at what teachers need to know and understand to work with undocumented students and their families.

Panelists on the forum include authors whose articles were published in the current issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy. They will address these pipelines with special attention to the problems, cases, laws and statistics in Washington State followed by a Q&A session with the audience.

Panelists

• Dr. Maria Timmons Flores, Professor of TESOL, Western Washington University, has been teaching culturally and linguistically diverse students in schools, communities, and wilderness for over 25 years. It was her students in these settings that inspired her commitment to social justice and motivated Maria to earn a PhD in Bilingual/Multicultural Education. Maria’s teaching and research focus primarily on supporting teachers to understand the influence of language and culture on learning. She teaches courses in bilingual and multicultural education, learning and development, and teaching strategies to support ALL learners. Maria’s current research brings critical cultural lenses to understanding and addressing educational equity for bilingual and immigrant students.

• Dr. John G. Richardson, Professor Emeritus of Sociology, Western Washington University, received his PhD from the University of California, Davis, and then went on to teach at the University of Alaska before coming to Western Washington University. His primary area of research has been the institutional history of American education, and of special education in particular. His most recent publication is Comparing Special Education (Stanford, 2011, with Justin Powell). His current research is a cross-national study of special and vocational education as contemporary means to control the expansion of mass schooling.

• Dr. Thelma Jackson, Race & Pedagogy Chism Series Lead Educator/Scholar-in-Residence, University of Puget Sound, brings a broad range of experience and expertise in the education field from community mobilization to educational transformation. She has a long history of serving and providing leadership to various education related boards, commissions and associations in Washington State including serving the Board of Trustees for Evergreen State College. Dr. Jackson has been a keynote speaker and has provided leadership and facilitation to numerous workshops, seminars and education-related events throughout her career. She has received a number of recognitions and awards for her outstanding community service. Dr. Jackson received her doctorate in Educational Leadership and Change from Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, CA. She and her husband live in Western Washington.

• Maggie Wilkens is state field coordinator at the League of Education Voters. A sociology major and ethnic studies minor, Maggie works to untangle the roots of structural inequality through reforming one of our biggest and most important social institutions: the education system.

• Tracy Sherman is a Policy Analyst at the League of Education Voters and handles a variety of issues including early learning and school discipline. Before returning home to the Pacific Northwest, she was the Associate Director of Government Relations at the American Association of University Women in Washington DC. There she advocated on numerous education civil rights issues including stopping bullying and harassment in schools, ensuring equitable access to school athletics, and increasing the number of women and minorities in science and engineering careers. In her spare time she helps find dogs permanent homes as a foster and volunteer with Saving Great Animals.

• Anne Lee is the Executive Director of TeamChild, a nonprofit civil legal advocacy project for youth in Washington State. Anne’s legal practice has focused on children’s rights, education law, and public benefits. She was one of the authors of the education advocacy manual, Make a Difference in a Child’s Life, and has provided training for hundreds of CASA volunteers, foster parents, youth, social workers, attorneys, and judges on a variety of topics, including advocacy, education law and benefits. Anne received her law degree from New York University School of Law and graduated magna cum laude from Princeton University.

The journal’s special issue on the "School-to-Prison Pipeline" and "The School-to-Deportation Pipeline" is now online. The issue is co-edited with Dan Larner from the Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies at Western Washington University.

The forum will be held during Western’s annual Back2Bellingham alumni weekend.

Location: Western Washington University, Miller Hall 005, Center for Education, Equity and Diversity (CEED)

Date: May 17, 2013

Time: 4-6pm

Saturday, March 9, 2013

School-to-Prison Pipeline Issue Now Online

We are pleased to announce that our special issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy on the School-to-Prison Pipeline and the School-to-Deportation Pipeline is now online at: http://www.wce.wwu.edu/Resources/CEP/eJournal/v007n001/


Readers are invited to contribute a rejoinder to any article in this issue.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

The School-to-Prison Pipeline: A Civil Rights and a Civil Liberty Issue

The School-to-Prison Pipeline: A Civil Rights and a Civil Liberty Issue


An Editorial Preview of Upcoming Issue



The School-to-Prison Pipeline stands as a direct contradiction to the vision of the public school as an institution for promoting and sustaining a democratic republic. Each year thousands of students are funneled through the public schools into the juvenile justice system as a result of school policies and practices that increasingly criminalize students rather than educate them. Most are students of color, students with disabilities, and students from impoverished neighborhoods. How and why this is happening is the focus of this issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy.



Research indicates that both the number of school suspensions and expulsions have increased dramatically as well as the kind of behaviors and infractions that result in suspensions and expulsions. Data from the United States Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights indicate that over three million students are suspended and over 100,000 students are expelled each year. 1 This rate has almost doubled in the past thirty years. Research also shows a relationship among expulsions, suspensions and school dropouts and subsequent involvement in the juvenile justice system. According to national figures, “high school dropouts are three and one-half times more likely than high school graduates to be arrested, and more than eight times as likely to be incarcerated.”2

Zero-tolerance policies, the overuse of school discipline and juvenile court referrals, exclusionary discipline policies, excessive policing in schools, the criminalization of disability-related behaviors, and pressures and abuse from the high-stakes testing environment are often cited as contributing factors. Together these policies and practices have resulted in the violation of three of our most basic democratic principles:

1. Right to an Education

2. Right to Non-Discrimination

3. Right to Due Process

The disruptions and denial of education as a result of suspensions, expulsions and exclusionary disciplinary policies have threatened the right to an education, especially when students are given indefinite expulsions without recourse to an alternative education route. The disproportionate impact on different student populations, especially on students of color and students with disabilities and emotional problems, has resulted in discriminatory treatment. And the process that often funnels students from the public school into the juvenile justice system often violates fundamental due process procedures. Most important, if the philosopher and educator, John Dewey, was correct in his theory that children learn what they experience, what are these school policies and practices teaching our children about the fundamental principles of our democracy?

A reconstructed example illustrates all three violations. A young student of color in an urban school in an impoverished neighborhood is confronted by a police resource officer in the hallway. Suddenly the young student finds himself in handcuffs and arrested for speaking back and for defiant and disrespectful behavior. Infractions that would have been treated as a school disciplinary incident have now become a criminal act. This often results when the concepts of school discipline and criminal acts are not clearly defined in a school policy, and the role of school administrators and police resource officers are not clearly distinguished. The role of police is to ensure safety and stop criminal acts, not to discipline students for breaking school rules. Are these misunderstandings that result in criminal arrest due to a lack in the training of school resource officers in cultural differences and a failure to understand the special needs of adolescent development? How aware is the student of his or her rights to due process at this point. How will this experience lead to school alienation and future dropout? What has this incident taught the student about our democratic principles? The complexity of any specific incident has led many authors in our issue to talk about a “persistent nexus or a web of intertwined, punitive threads” rather than a simple pipeline that our young people get caught up in.3

The purpose of this issue of the journal is to bring awareness and understanding to this complex nexus of events. The issue is going online at a very opportune moment. The United States Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights held its first ever hearing on the school-to-prison pipeline on December 12, 2012, an event that brought national attention to the problem. In this issue, our authors complement the testimony that was given at the hearing with a deeper, multidimensional analysis.

The following controversy was posed for authors to address:

The School to Prison Pipeline refers to a national trend in which school policies and practices are increasingly resulting in criminalizing students rather than educating them. Statistics indicate that the number of suspensions, expulsions, dropouts or “pushouts,” and juvenile justice confinements is growing. Moreover, there is a disproportionate impact on students of color and students with disabilities and emotional problems. In this issue, we invite authors to examine the policy implications, the political ramifications, and the causes and possible solutions to this problem. Moreover, what are these policies teaching our children?

There are five different sections.

Section 1 includes authors’ responses to the controversy itself and covers multiple perspectives and dimensions of the problem.

Section 2 looks at other related pipelines like the “School to Deportation” Pipeline.

Section 3, entitled, “From Theory To Activism: Perspectives from Youth Advocacy Groups In Washington State,” brings together a description of the activism and recommendations by groups in the trenches who have been trying to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline. The groups include the Center for Children and Youth Justice, Team Child, the League of Education Voters and the Washington State Education Ombudsman, an office that may be the first of its kind in the nation.

Section 4 provides the reader with a video of an interview with one of our authors. Justice Bobbe Bridge, former justice of the Washington State Supreme Court, who started the Center for Children and Youth Justice, discusses a more proactive approach that the courts can use to reach young people who are truant and disengaged from the school before they enter the school-to-prison pipeline. We have also inserted a video from an earlier forum that the journal sponsored in which Rose Spidell, an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington, talks about the cases that have come to the ACLU and the actions that were taken. In the near future, we will put online other video interviews with our authors. The videos can be accessed by clicking on the “Authors Talk” link on the journal’s menu.

We finally conclude in Section 5 with three book reviews on the subject.

I want to thank my guest co-editor, Daniel Larner, for all his work in helping to conceptualize this issue and select the included papers from our many submissions. Dan is a professor at the Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies at Western Washington University and has been a longtime member of the ACLU Board of Directors in Washington State. In addition to his courses in theatre arts, Dan also teaches courses in civil liberties at the college. His editorial reflects his own unique perspective on this topic from a lifetime devoted to promoting civil liberties and teaching young people to understand the meanings and significance of these cornerstones of our democracy. Readers can read an earlier article by Dan that was published in the Winter 2010 issue of the journal, entitled, “Educating Politicians as Playwrights: Toward a Sustainable World in Creative Conflict.”



1Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, Civil Rights Data Collection, available at http://ocrdata.ed.gov/.

2Bridge, B.J., Curtis, L.E., Oakley,N., “No Single Source, No Simple Solution: Why We Should Broaden Our Perspective of the School-to-Prison-Pipeline and Look to the Court in Redirecting Youth from It,” Journal of Educational Controversy, Fall 2012/Winter2013.

3Gebhard, A., “Schools, Prisons and Aboriginal Youth: Making Connections,” Journal of Educational Controversy, Fall 2012/Winter2013.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Journal of Educational Controversy to Take Part in MLK Activities

The Journal of Educational Controversy will be participating in the Martin Luther King, Jr. Human Rights Conference here in Bellingham, Washington. The conference is an annual event sponsored by the Whatcom Human Rights Task Force that is now part of the Whatcom Peace and Justice Center. It will take place at the Whatcom Community College on Saturday, January 19, 2013. The theme of the conference this year is: “Gaining a Voice in a Democracy: Tools for Empowerment.” Our session will complicate the vision of the American school as an institution for gaining a voice in our democracy by looking at the contradictions posed by our upcoming issue on the school-to-prison pipeline. The session will be facilitated by editor, Lorraine Kasprisin, and author, Maria Timmons Flores. Professor Flores will discuss her paper, “A DREAM Deported: What Undocumented American Youth Need their Schools to Understand.” A section on the “School-to-Deportation Pipeline” will supplement articles on the “School-to-Prison Pipeline” in the issue. Our session will provide the political and legal context of the problems, causes and possible solutions, along with suggestions on what schools can do. Young students will join us to talk about their lived experiences, the messages they hear, and the barriers and bridges that drive them one way or another.


Other events honoring the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. in Bellingham include:

A free breakfast at Bellingham High School at 10 a.m.; Rosalinda Guillen, director of Community to Community Development, will be the featured speaker on Jan 21.

Poverty Action March begins at 11 am at Bellingham High School on Jan. 21. (The march is inspired by the 1968 Poor People’s March on Washington D.C. that was being planned by Dr. King and others, only months before his assassination, to bring attention to economic and social disparities for Americans living in poverty.)

Service projects include a Read-In at Village Books, painting at the Boys and Girls Club and volunteering to support the elderly through the Chore Program.

Tangled Web Conference on Race, Immigration, Poverty and Prisons; Western Washington University, Jan. 17-18.

Martin Luther King Conference, Whatcom Community College, Jan. 19.
Readers can read an excellent article, “Martin Luther King’s Legacy: Gaining a Voice in Democracy” by Victor Nolet, Professor at Western Washington University and member of the Whatcom Human Rights Task Force Planning Committee at the website of the Bellingham Herald.

Providing a context for this national day of remembrance, Professor Nolet writes:

Imagine a year in which you are invited to the White House to meet with a sitting president, your daughter is born, you are arrested and placed in solitary confinement, you deliver a historic and nationally televised speech, and you are named person of the year by Time Magazine. That was Martin Luther King’s year in 1963! In 1963, at the age of just 34, Martin Luther King was considered by many to be the moral leader of the Civil Rights movement. He was an ordained clergyman, a gifted orator, a labor activist, and an accomplished scholar with a doctorate from Boston University. He also was considered by many to be a revolutionary, a radical, and according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, an enemy of the United States. By all accounts, Martin Luther King was a complicated and controversial figure.
To read the entire article, go to: http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2013/01/13/2824796/mlk-legacy-gaining-a-voice-in.html

Monday, September 3, 2012

CALL FOR PAPERS -- UPCOMING ISSUE OF THE JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL CONTROVERSY

NEW CALL FOR PAPERS: JOURNAL OF EDUCATIONAL CONTROVERSY


VOL. 8 NO. 1 Fall 2013

THEME: WHO DEFINES THE PUBLIC IN PUBLIC EDUCATION

CONTROVERSY ADDRESSED:

Our journal published an article recently on the banning of the Mexican-American curriculum in Arizona’s Tucson Unified School District. The incident raises many larger questions about what knowledge is of most worth, whose perspective gains ascendency in the curriculum, and what public is represented in the public schools. Controversies have emerged not only over what should be included in specific areas like the literary canon, historical interpretations, science curriculum, etc., but also in the larger arena of ideological frameworks over what it means to be human, what it means to be an educated person, and what social values should frame a public education in a society that embeds a fundamental tension between its capitalist economic system and its democratic egalitarian ideals. Even the tension between the secular and the religious continues to defy easy answers in a society that values separation between church and state. As Warren Nord says about the typical study of economics, it assumes that “economics is a science, people are essentially self-interested utility-maximizers, the economic realm is one of competition for scarce resources, values are personal preferences and value judgments are matters of cost-benefit analysis.” (Warren A. Nord, “The Relevance of Religion to the Curriculum,” The School Administrator, January 1999.) In effect, the so-called secular study of economics makes a number of assumptions about human nature, society, and values. What is left out of this study of the economic domain of life is the theologian’s questions of social justice, stewardship, poverty and wealth, human dignity and the meaningfulness of work. To what degree do students understand or are even aware of these hidden assumptions in their study of economics and other subjects? To what degree should other perspectives be included? We invite authors to shed some light on these questions.

MANUSCRIPTS DUE: APRIL 1, 2013

PUBLICATION DATE: FALL 2013

Authors can find the journal at: http://www.wce.wwu.edu/eJournal

Saturday, May 5, 2012

“Finding Your Voice” Parent Institute and “Train the Trainers” Workshops to be Held in Bellingham, Washington on May 17th, 18th, and 19th

The Educational Institute for Democratic Renewal that houses the Journal of Educational Controversy is joining other community groups to bring a special three day workshop to Bellingham, Washington on May 17, 18 and 19th. The workshops are sponsored by the Washington State Office of the Education Ombudsman that works out of the Governor’s Office in Washington State. In addition to our Institute, other community groups that are helping to plan the event include: Community to Community Development, Whatcom Family and Community Network, Whatcom County Schools in Community, local school districts, Western Washington University and immigration lawyers.

The goal of the workshops is to provide training for immigrant, refugee, marginalized and disenfranchised communities to help them advocate for their children and learn how to navigate the public school system. The planning committee has made an effort to include all cultures in our community including our Latino, Russian, Vietnamese and Punjabi communities. Translators will be available in four languages.

The two day “Training the Trainers” workshop on May 17th and 18th will train members of the community and the schools who work with these communities with ways to reach out and empower parents. On Saturday, May 19th, the trainers will train the parents at the Parent Institute.
 
The Parent Institute will cover the following topics:

1. How do school districts work? - Understanding the way school districts are structured, and financed, how education laws and policies are created, and how to participate in the education system is critical to help you find your voice in your school community.


2. Become an education advocate - Learn what do we mean by education advocate and how to be one. Find out new ways to help your child and the students in your school succeed.


3. Participate in your child’s education - Family involvement must be done in partnership with schools. Every parent or family member has different skills, experiences, and life circumstances that can contribute to their children’s education. Find yours!


4. Prepare your student for college - Career and college preparation starts earlier that you think. Find out what you need to do and when should you start.


5. Home-school communication skills - Learn strategies and tips to communicate better with school staff and prevent and resolve problems. 
In some early posts below, we described the unique role of the Washington State Office of the Education Ombudsman. It is one of the first offices of its kind in the nation. The Office functions independently from the public school system and resolves complaints, disputes, and problems between families and elementary and secondary public schools in all areas that affect student learning.

Information on the Bellingham Parent Institute:

Location: St. Luke's Health Education Center, 3333 Squalcum Pkwy, Bellingham, WA 98225

Date and Time: Saturday, May 19, 2012, 9-2:30 pm

Free/complimentary lunch

Register online at: http://www.parentprep.org/  Space is limited.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Journal’s Authors to Speak at our 14th Annual Educational Law and Social Justice Forum on May 2nd

Our 14th Annual Educational Law and Social Justice Forum this year will feature authors from our current issue of the journal on the theme, “The Education and Schools our Children Deserve.”

Panelists:

■Francisco Rios, Dean of Woodring College of Education

■Susan Donnelly, Head of Whatcom Day Academy and Co-editor

■David Carroll, Woodring Elementary Education Faculty

■Annie Parker, 3rd Grade Teacher, Seattle

■Vale Hartley, Teacher, Whatcom Day Academy

■Paul Shaker, Professor Emeritus and former Dean at Simon Fraser University

The Controversy Addressed:
The politicizing of education at the national level has centered on issues of standards, accountability, global competitiveness, national economic growth, low student achievement on worldwide norms, and federally mandated uniformity. 
Without conversation at this deeper level about the fundamental purposes of education, we cannot develop a comprehensive vision of the kinds of schools our children deserve. We invite authors to contribute their conceptions of the kind of education our children deserve and/or the kinds of schools that serve the needs of individuals and of a democratic society.
There has been little discussion of the public purposes of our schools or what kind of education is necessary for an individual’s development and search for a meaningful life. There is a paucity of ideas being discussed at the national level around topics such as: how school practices can be aligned with democratic principles of equity and justice; how school practices can promote the flourishing of individual development as well as academic achievement; what skills and understandings are needed for citizens to play a transformative role in their society.
Date: May 2, 2012

Time: 5:00 - 7:00pm

Location: Western Washington University
               Center for Education, Equity and Diversity (CEED)
               Miller Hall 005

Contact: CEED Phone: (360) 650-3827

Sponsored by the Journal of Educational Controversy and the Center for Education, Equity and Diversity.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

"Precious Knowledge" Film Screening with filmmaker Eren Isabel McGinnis to be Shown at Western Washington University

Precious Knowledge is a film about the Mexican American Studies Program in Tucson, Arizona that was banned by the Arizona State Legislature.  There will be a free public screening of the film on the campus of Western Washington University.  For those who are in the area, come and join us.  For everyone who is concerned with the issue, share your thoughts on this blog.

Date/Time: April 11, 2012 7:00pm -- 9:00pm

Location: AW 204
Free Screening!

From Description:
Precious Knowledge interweaves the transformative stories of seniors in the Mexican American Studies Program at Tucson High School. Inequalities in education continue to affect people of color. The ticking time bomb story of our time is that fewer than six in ten Latino adults in the United States have a high school diploma. These alarming dropout rates will continue to have a serious impact on our nation. The documentary goes further, however, by illustrating forms of critical pedagogy that can empower Latino youth and other youth of color and change this state of affairs. Precious Knowledge will illustrate to a nationwide audience a Mexican American Studies program that inspires 82% of its students to enroll in college. The themes of Precious Knowledge are embedded in the journey of each student as they: self reflect, seek out precious knowledge, begin to act, and ultimately transform, while nurturing positive images of Latino identity and embracing the dignity of all cultures and histories. A discussion with the filmmaker will be held following the movie.


For more information, contact Saraswati Noel at noels@students.wwu.edu

Friday, March 2, 2012

JEC Associate Editor, John Richardson, Receives Award for “Comparing Special Education: Origins to Contemporary Paradoxes”

John Richardson, Associate Editor of the Journal of Educational Controversy and Professor Emeritus of Sociology at Western Washington University, has received the “Outstanding Book Award” for contemporary issues in curriculum by Division B of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) for his recent book, Comparing Special Education: Origins to Contemporary Paradoxes. The book is coauthored with Justin J.W. Powell . We reviewed Professor Richardson’s book in our current issue. Read Ellen Brantlinger’s review here.



Congratulations John!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Fifth Anniversary Issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy Now Online: The Education and Schools our Children Deserve

We are pleased to announce the publication of our special issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy on the theme, “The Education and Schools our Children Deserve,” co-edited with Susan Donnelly, head of the Whatcom Day Academy. This issue of the journal will also introduce to our readers the new dean of the Woodring College of Education at Western Washington University --- the home of the journal. Dean Francisco Rios brings with him a vision of the public mission of schools in a democratic society and the kinds of teachers that can make that education possible. He shares that vision with us in his first published article for our journal, “The Future of Colleges of Education.”


As I mention in my editorial to the issue, it is fitting that an anniversary issue should touch on one of the most fundamental questions in education – the education and schools our children deserve, as well as engage those ideas in an experimental, innovative format. Readers will see some unique use of multi-media in this issue. For example, in addition to our usual printed book reviews, we have developed our first video review. Two college professors and a school teacher were filmed in our studio engaging in a conversation around Paul Shaker’s book, Reclaiming Education for Democracy: Thinking Beyond No Child Left Behind. The author then responded to the video review of his book in a printed article following the video. Likewise, we are trying an experiment to see if we can extend the conversation started in the journal on the blog. Two reviewers were selected to review Grace Lee Boggs book, The Next American Revolution: Sustainable Activism for the Twenty-First Century. The author, Grace Lee Boggs and the co-author, Scott Kurashige, will also join in on the conversation. We will be posting the response by Grace Lee Boggs shortly on this blog.


And finally, our entire third section gives the reader a look inside a model school with video interspersed throughout the article. The school, the Whatcom Day Academy, is our partner school in the National League of Democratic Schools. Our partnership has enabled us to engage with actual practices and to share them with our readers.


We extend an invitation to our readership to engage the authors and the reviewers on our blog in a continuing, seamless conversation. It again exemplifies our attempt to generate an ongoing dialogue in the journal with scholars, practitioners and the general public.


We are dedicating this issue to Alfie Kohn, whose book, The Schools our Children Deserve, was the inspiration for this issue. In his prologue to this issue, Mr. Kohn reflects on the years since the publication of The Schools our Children Deserve and the need more than ever to be asking what kind of schools our children still deserve.


The issue is divided into three sections.


Section one is a series of articles that were written in response to the controversial scenario posed for the issue. Authors come at it from different perspectives and with different disciplinary tools, but together they form a vital chorus of important voices that look at “the education and schools our children deserve” from outside the dominant discourse that frames today’s political debates.


Section two is an “In the News” section. Here we took a very controversial issue in the news, namely, the Arizona legislation to ban ethnic studies in the schools. Under a copy of the legislation that our readers can read in its entirety, we published an article from the director of the school district that was under attack. Augustine Romero tells his own story about the events that took place in Arizona’s Tucson Unified School District.

Section three is our attempt to give readers an idea of what a “school meant for children” would look like. This section embeds some twenty-three videos of actual school classrooms in an article written by Susan Donnelly, the head of the Whatcom Day Academy. The Educational Institute for Democratic Renewal, which houses the Journal of Educational Controversy, has partnered with the Whatcom Day Academy as part of a network of schools started by John Goodlad called the National League of Democratic Schools.


We believe that the current political dialogue on education omits a discussion of the deepest questions we should be addressing. This issue was an attempt to address those questions.


Here is the controversy that was posed to the authors:


The politicizing of education at the national level has centered on issues of standards, accountability, global competitiveness, national economic growth, low student achievement on worldwide norms, and federally mandated uniformity. There has been little discussion of the public purposes of our schools or what kind of education is necessary for an individual’s development and search for a meaningful life. There is a paucity of ideas being discussed at the national level around topics such as: how school practices can be aligned with democratic principles of equity and justice; how school practices can promote the flourishing of individual development as well as academic achievement; what skills and understandings are needed for citizens to play a transformative role in their society. Without conversation at this deeper level about the fundamental purposes of education, we cannot develop a comprehensive vision of the kinds of schools our children deserve. We invite authors to contribute their conceptions of the kind of education our children deserve and/or the kinds of schools that serve the needs of individuals and of a democratic society.
We invite our readers to enjoy reading the issue and join in the conversation.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Washington Educational Ombudsman to Speak on Bullying and Harassment on Nov. 17

We are providing an opportunity for the community to learn about the problem of bullying and harassment in the schools. Every school district in Washington State is now required to adopt new state model anti-bullying and harassment policies and procedures. We have invited an expert who can provide information and answer questions. Adie Simmons is the Washington State Office of Education Ombudsman Director whose office deals with these issues. If you are in the area, come learn how these new requirements protect students from harassment and how families can get help.



Bullying andTeasing is No Laughing Matter


Thursday, November 17, 6:30 – 8:30pm


Bellingham Public Library Lecture Room, 210 Central Ave, Bellingham, WA

This event is free and open to the public.


Sponsored by the Educational Institute for Democratic Renewal, the Journal of Educational Controversy, and the Whatcom County Chapter of the ACLU - Washington.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

ACLU Attorney to Facilitate Workshop on "Civil Rights in Schools 101" at WWU on April 27th.

For those of you in the Washington State area, we invite you to join us at a workshop called, "Civil Rights in Schools 101." It will be facilitated by Linda Mangel, the staff attorney and Equity Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington. See information below.



Civil Rights in Schools 101 Workshop


Facilitated by Linda Mangel, Staff Attorney and Equity Director, ACLU-WA


• Date: Wednesday, April 27, 2011

• Time: 5:30 -7:30 pm

• Place: Center for Education, Equity and Diversity (CEED), Miller Hall 005, Woodring College of Education, Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington


Possible Topics covered:

Bullying and Harassment
Rights of pregnant students
Free Speech Rights
Discipline
Truancy
Achievement Gap
Disparate discipline
Athletics
Cyberbullying
Cell phone searches

Sponsored by the Journal of Educational Controversy and the Center for Education, Equity and Diversity at the Woodring College of Education at Western Washington University, and co-sponsored by the Whatcom County Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Union vs. Anti-Union Movement: Forum on the Controversy over the Role of Teacher Unions to take place on April 20th at WWU


The Woodring College of Education at Western Washington University will sponsor the 13th Annual Educational Law and Social Justice Forum at 5:30-7:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 20 at the Wilson Library Presentation Room on WWU’s campus. The forum will discuss the topic of whether teachers unions are a benefit or an obstacle to the education of students.


Panelists will include: Mary Lindquist, president of the Washington Education Association, William Lyne, president of the United Faculty of Washington State and member of the Washington Education Association Board of Directors, and Liv Finne, Director of Education at the Washington Policy Center.

The forum is sponsored by Woodring’s Journal of Educational Controversy and Center for Education, Equity and Diversity, and is co-sponsored by the Whatcom County Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington

Below are position statements by the panelists.

 

POSITION STATEMENTS




WASHINGTON POLICY CENTER STATEMENT
By Liv Finne
Director, Center for Education



Unions are private organizations of people who join together to advance their economic interests, and every worker has a right to join a union as a basic part of the freedom of association.

 Today, however, unions are a powerful force in public education and their consistent objection to meaningful reform makes them the primary obstacle to the changes needed to improve the education of children. Here are some of the school reforms that unions oppose:


• Allowing local communities to open public charter schools.
• Retaining the best teachers by basing layoffs on performance, not seniority.
• Promoting high-quality teachers with raises based on merit, not time served.
• Rewarding top-performing teachers with year-end bonuses.
• Allowing higher pay for teachers who take on the most challenging students.
• Allowing higher salaries to meet the demand for more math and science teachers.
• Making it easier to fire bad teachers.
• Lifting the ban on letting any qualified professional, not just people with special certificates, teach in a public classroom. State law allows private schools to hire the best person as a teacher, without mandates or restrictions. With few exceptions a college professor cannot teach in a public high school – she doesn’t have the right certificate.
• Letting principals hire and fire teachers based on what’s best for children, not what’s convenient for adults.
• Allowing parents to evaluate teachers and using this input to set raises and teacher assignments.


We need an honest conversation about how to improve our schools. Our research shows schools with the most effective learning environments for children are led by great principals who choose a team of highly effective and committed teachers. (See “Eight Practical Ways to Reverse the Decline of Public Schools,” by Liv Finne, December 2008).


The best schools create a learning environment that is based on high expectations and hard work, and that promotes a culture that values academic excellence. In general unions oppose letting school principals control spending, benefits, salaries, hiring and work assignments in local schools. Promoting excellence in community leadership and in classroom instruction is key to student learning, but these meaningful school reforms are not possible as long as unions oppose them. For these reasons, unions represent a serious obstacle to improving education for all children in Washington state. 




WASHINGTON EDUCATION ASSOCIATION STATEMENT 


by
Mary Lindquist, Washington Education Association President

​Teachers’ working conditions are students’ learning conditions. No one understands those conditions better than teachers, and teachers’ unions are teachers organized and working together to improve our students’ learning environment.

​A recent Harvard Educational Review article highlighted the positive correlation between strong unions and better student SAT and ACT scores. Why? Teacher contracts address critical issues such as class size, teacher quality and team collaboration.

Critics of unions regularly demonizes teachers not in an effort to improve education but as part of a broad, well-organized and well-funded effort to undermine public confidence in public sector unions. Such efforts exaggerate the failure of public schools, do nothing to improve education and ignore the real threat ---- chronic under funding of our schools.

​What’s at stake in this debate is whether or not public education should remain robustly public. Teachers’ unions protect all students' opportunities by remaining committed to the high quality, publicly funded education that fuels the economic prosperity.




UNITED FACULTY OF WASHINGTON STATE STATEMENT
By
William Lyne, President of the UFWW



The so-call education “reform” movement regularly demonizes teachers not in an effort to improve education but as part of a broad, well-organized and well-funded effort to privatize and exploit the education “market” for profit. Efforts to exaggerate the failure of public schools, decrease the funding of public education, and blame teachers do not improve education, but they do create the conditions for the exploitation of students and families for private interests.

Editor: For an update and elaboration of William Lyne's position, see his later post, "Who Breaks a Butterfly upon a Wheel."


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 
Editor:  A second event will occur on the WWU campus a week later on Wednesday, April 27th at 5:30-7:30pm.  A workshop on Civil Rights in Schools 101 will be take place at the Center for Education, Equity and Diversity in Miller Hall room 005 on the WWU’s campus.   Linda Mangel, staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington, will facilitate the workshop on possible topics like bullying and harassment, truancy, discipline, the achievement gap,  rights of pregnant students, disparate discipline, athletics. cyberbullying, cell phone searches.  This event is also sponsored by the Journal of Educational Controversy and the Center for Education, Equity and Diversity and co-sponsored by the Whatcom County Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union of Washington.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

School to Prison Pipeline -- Call for Papers from the Journal of Educational Controversy

The Journal of Educational Controversy announces its call for papers for Volume 7 Number 1.

THEME: The School-to-Prison Pipeline


CONTROVERSY ADDRESSED:

The School-to-Prison Pipeline refers to a national trend in which school policies and practices are increasingly resulting in criminalizing students rather than educating them. Statistics indicate that the number of suspensions, expulsions, dropouts or “pushouts,” and juvenile justice confinements is growing. Moreover, there is a disproportionate impact on students of color and students with disabilities and emotional problems. In this issue, we invite authors to examine the policy implications, the political ramifications, and the causes and possible solutions to this problem. Moreover, what are these policies teaching our children?


DEADLINE FOR MANUSCRIPTS: DECEMBER 31, 2011
PUBLICATION DATE: SUMMER 2012

http://www.wce.wwu.edu/Resources/CEP/eJournal/

Thursday, October 21, 2010

New Issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy Now Online

The Journal of Educational Controversy is pleased to announce that the Summer 2010 issue titled, “The Professions and Scholarly Communities: Creating the Public’s Questions and Understandings in the Public Square” is now online.

Controversy addressed in the issue:

Professionals and scholarly communities in all fields bring a special expertise to the discussion of ideas in the public square of a democracy. At times, democratic decisions or views widely held by the public conflict with sound professional knowledge of the professional or scholarly community, and challenge the integrity of the choices that a professional must make in a particular case. At other times, the professional is faced with a conflict within the profession itself between deeply entrenched traditions and the challenges posed by newer paradigms. Under both circumstances, the professional is left with a decision about the ethical path to follow and the result will influence the public’s understanding and questions. This issue of the Journal of Educational Controversy examines instances where professionals are faced with a dilemma that either pits a democratic decision against the expertise of professional standards or a conflict within the profession itself when traditional paradigms are challenged. How does the professional examine the choices that would have to be weighed and consider the most ethical position that should be taken?


Following is a list of the articles featured in the journal:
Privacy and Library Records, a case study in Whatcom County
Joan Airoldi
with introduction by Daniel Larner
Ethical Breach and the Schizophrenic Process: Theorizing the Judge and the Teacher
Heather Greenhalgh-Spencer
Bryce Bartlett, Hausch, Blackwell, and Saunders


Next Issue: The Education Our Children Deserve
We invite readers to contribute formal refereed responses to our Rejoinder Section or more spontaneous responses on our journal’s blog.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

New Journal on Native Literatures Launched

JEC Editorial board member, John Purdy, has launched a new journal called Native Literatures: Generation. The mission of this new journal is described as follows:

NLG is dedicated to providing a global forum for original works of literature by writers from the indigenous nations of North America and Hawai’i. Our goal is to support writers in their endeavors by offering a venue linking them with new audiences and potential publishers. Moreover, our magazine is designed to generate funds to provide financial support for writers through scholarships for their studies or grants for specific writing projects.

NLG is a quarterly, with content accessible online for three months with rights reverting to authors thereafter.

Submissions:

NLG is seeking original, unpublished works by writers from the indigenous nations of North America and Hawai’i. We publish in all genres: poetry, fiction (short stories but also novel excerpts if self-contained), creative nonfiction, drama and mixed-genre/media. We are seeking works that extend this body of literature by avoiding cliché and trite conventions through risk-taking and experimentation, but also through distinctive and engaging voices, exciting and innovative approaches. For full submission guidelines, please visit our website. For information, contact info@nativeliteratures.com or submissions@nativeliteratures.com

Congratulations John on the launching of your new magazine. Readers can check it out at: http://www.nativeliteratures.com/