Monday moan: All I know is what I’ve been reading on line

By Jeff Salisbury

“Well, what shall I talk about? I ain’t got anything funny to say. All I know is what I read in the papers.” – Wmister journalism2ill Rogers

And all I know is what I’ve read online recently… newspapers… magazines… and blogs.

Now you’ll know too.

Is the U.S. headed for a servant economy?

An absolutely stunning editorial from The St. Louis Post-Dispatch & does an excellent job of breaking down how ‪‎RightToWork‬ and other purely political choices to crush American workers’ wages are creating a new “servant economy”:

“The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that by 2022, three-fourths of all U.S. jobs will require a high school education or less. Nearly all of them will be low-wage service industry jobs. Some experts have gone so far as to suggest that a new servant economy is emerging, an upstairs/downstairs model made possible by the extraordinary gains of the few and the desperation of the many.”


“Education isn’t about job-readiness or college-readiness. If you get a job but lack heart, backbone, and empathy, education has failed you.” – John Kuhn, superintendent of Perrin-Whitt School District, near Ft. Worth, Texas (Twitter tweet) — and more from Supt. Kuhn on YouTube here:

Do you live in a bubble? A quiz

By Paul Solman and Elizabeth Shell  

White America is coming apart at the seams. That’s the thesis Charles Murray, a libertarian political scientist at the American Enterprise Institute, puts forth in his new book, “Coming Apart.” In a piece soon to appear on the NewsHour, Murray argues that the super wealthy, super educated and super snobby live in so-called super-ZIPs: cloistered together, with little to no exposure to American culture at large. Those people, he says, live in a social and cultural bubble. And so he includes this 25-question quiz, covering beer to politics to Avon to “The Big Bang Theory,” to help readers determine how thick their own bubble may be.

That moment in the story when the hero finds proof of the villain’s evil plan: Richard D. McLellan’s 1990 Notes On School Choice

In Michigan one of the first instances of school choice came in the 1970s when Jack Hoekstra, president of the Kalamazoo School Board, tried to stop desegregation through busing of Kalamazoo Public Schools by allowing parents to choose the school they wanted their kids to attend; with the condition they were responsible for transportation. School choice has been championed by others in the state over the years, but there is one name that has become synonymous with the Michigan education reform movement – Richard D. McLellan.

When Michigan drafted its charter school law, Richard D. McLellan was there. When Michigan tried to set up a voucher system in 2002 that failed, Richard D. McLellan was there. When EMU chancellors were approached about getting behind the EAA in 2011, Richard D. McLellan was there. Skunkworks? You bet, he was there too. Richard D. McLellan was part of the school choice movement in Michigan before it actually became a movement. How do we know? He took notes.

Higher education and the promise of insurgent public memory 

By Dr. Henry A. Giroux

“At a time when both political parties, anti-public intellectual pundits and mainstream news sources view the purpose of higher education almost exclusively as a workstation for training a global workforce, generating capital for the financial elite, and as a significant threat to the power of the military, corporate and ultra-rich, it becomes more difficult to reclaim a history in which the culture of business is not the culture of higher education. This is certainly not meant to suggest that higher education once existed in an ideal past in which it only functioned as a public good and provided a public service in the interest of developing a democratic polity. Higher education has always been fraught with notable inequities and anti-democratic tendencies, but it also once functioned as a crucial reminder of both its own limitations and the potential role it might play in attacking social problems and deepening the promise of a democracy to come. As difficult as it may seem to believe, John Dewey’s insistence that “democracy needs to be reborn in each generation, and education is its midwife” was once taken seriously by many academic leaders. Today, it is fair to see that Dewey’s once vaunted claim has been willfully ignored, forgotten or made an object of scorn.” — Henry A. Giroux is an American and Canadian scholar and cultural critic. One of the founding theorists of critical pedagogy in the United States, he is best known for his pioneering work in public pedagogy, cultural studies, youth studies, higher education, media studies, and critical theory

The history of the future of ed-tech

By Audrey Watters

“I gave the keynote this morning at the EdTechTeacher iPad Summit in San Diego. I wanted to talk about the history of ed-tech — about how we ended up with technologies that are in many cases simply making old (awful) educational practices more efficient. I asked a room full of educators who’d ever heard of Alan Kay. I think four people raised their hands. I asked who’d ever heard of Seymour Papert. Maybe a dozen had. I asked who’d ever heard of B. F. Skinner. Everyone in the room. Sigh. Here are the notes and slides from my talk. There’s also a Google Doc with links to learn more about the history I mentioned.” – Not an educator-turned-techie, but seems like a balanced approach – so much other edtech is all about “the next great thing” usually written by a corporatist trying to sell schools something they WANT but don’t really NEED.​ Audrey Watters, is an education writer, a recovering academic, a serial dropout, a rabble-rouser.

Please attend the next meeting of the Wayland Board of Education AND speak up during the Public Comment to  remind trustees the Wayland Union Schools should LIVE WITHIN ITS MEANS.


Wayland Union Schools – Board of Education Meetings & Workshops

April 20, 2015 Wayland Union Middle School, 701 Wildcat Drive, Wayland – 7:00 p.m

May 18, 2015 Wayland Union Middle School, 701 Wildcat Drive, Wayland – 7:00 p.m

June 8, 2015 Wayland Union Middle School, 701 Wildcat Drive, Wayland – 7:00 p.m

June 22, 2015 Administration Building, 850 E. Superior, Wayland – 7:00 p.m

July 13, 2015 Administration Building, 850 E. Superior, Wayland – 7:00 p.m

During the PUBLIC COMMENTS, tell Board members and Parents and the general public to:

  1. Question Every Aspect of the District’s Essential and Non-Essential Educational Programming and Personnel (Needs versus Wants)
  2.  Set General Fund & Casino Revenue Spending Guidelines
  3. Track and Trim All Expenditures & Make Targeted Programs & Personnel Cuts


“Build ONE Budget” – combine general fund revenue (local, state and federal dollars) and Gun Lake Casino “in lieu of taxes” revenue.

“Pay Yourselves First” – restore the fund equity – which dipped from 15% to 7% in four years – by committing to saving 1% to 1.5% per year for AT LEAST the next 5 years.

“No More Loans” – resist the temptation to borrow more money on top of the $291,000 annual loan payments to United Bank for the science wing from 2015 to 2025… no loans for iPads, no loans for  school buses – no more loans PERIOD.


• Nancy Thelen, President, Email: Phone: 616-877-3098

• Tom Salingue, Vice President, Email: Phone: 269-792-2061

• Toni Ordway, Treasurer, Email: Phone: 269-910-3297

• Theresa Dobry, Secretary, Email: Phone: 616-681-2119

• Pete Zondervan, Trustee, Email: Phone: 616-450-1468

• Janel Hott, Trustee, Email:  Phone: (h) 269-792-0297  (c) 269-250-0286

• Gary Wood, Trustee, Email: Phone: 616-681-2120.


  • Jeff, I follow your logic, and wonder if a cost benefit analysis was made for the expenditures in question.
    Also keeping the thought “good money after bad” in mind, I wonder how much is already invested in these projects, and how much of that capitol (time and money) will be lost by halting the projects. If by halting the programs we have potential for loss of capitol already invested, how does that stack up against the cost of the loans, and additional risk to solvency?
    Schools and property Taxes are two of the most prominent concerns when considering a home purchase, and when a Real Estate Appraiser is completing their analysis of your home they will take into consideration all influences on that properties value. How do our taxes compare, and how does our school system rank? How do these programs affect the quality of our school children’s education, and our property taxes?
    I applaud the School Board, just like I do the Wayland City Council; they all put their self in harm’s way and open to total public scrutiny, in an effort to serve their community while the vast majority sits idle and cast doubt.
    I applaud Jeff for his past service on the School Board, sharing so much knowledge, and providing support for his statements. I also thank Jeff for inspiring me to be more involved.
    One less Lemming

  • lemming
    any of various volelike rodents of the genus Lemmus and related genera, of northern and arctic regions of Europe, Asia, and North America: family Cricetidae. The Scandinavian variety, Lemmus lemmus, migrates periodically when its population reaches a peak
    a member of any large group following an unthinking course towards mass destruction

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