Teachers of Conscience and the Common Core Scylla and Charybdis

radical eyes for equity

In our popular discourse, we are prone to say we are caught between a rock and a hard place, a veiled allusion to Homer’s Scylla and Charybdis.

For K-12 public school teachers over the past thirty years, our Scylla and Charybdis have been federal, state, district, and school mandates on one side and our own professional expertise and autonomy on the other as we navigate the rough waters of serving our students.

When Diane Ravitch spoke at my home university, she offered a talk to a small group in the afternoon and then attended an informal gathering before her main speech. Since she and I had become virtual friends through email and Twitter, this was the first time we met in person. I took that opportunity to introduce Diane to a former graduate student of mine who at the time was struggling in a “no excuses” environment at the high-poverty, majority-minority…

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