ArchiveMarch 2024

Follow the Money: The ins and outs of school budgeting


Consider this scenario. You are a school principal who needs to fill a teaching position. One of the candidates is a highly experienced teacher who has relocated to Chicago. Her years of experience and advanced degrees translate to a sizeable salary. There’s no question that she will be a great asset to your educational program, but hiring her would take a big bite out of your available...

Studs redux: working in the 21st century


There are a rare few books that, once you’ve read them, permanently change the way you see the world. One I’ve written about before, Richard Powers’ The Overstory, makes it impossible to see a cluster of trees in a forest as inanimate ever again. Then there’s The Soul of an Octopus by our friend Sy Montgomery. Once again, reading about Sy’s relationship with an octopus at the New England Aquarium...

School Daze


When I started this blog, I assumed that the bulk of my entries would be about education. That remained the case in its early years, but as my time away from the classroom grew, particularly during Covid, the focus shifted toward more personal and political musings. But every once in a while, I’m drawn back into the world that was my home for more than sixty years. Two recent events returned me...

The Diary of a “Procedure”


This posting is going to take an odd before and after form. I’m scheduled for a hernia repair tomorrow, March 5th, so I’m going to report on my state of mind today – and possibly tomorrow morning – then reflect on the experience itself as soon as the anesthetic fog lifts. The first thing to note is the carefully crafted language regarding the procedure, which is referred to as repair...

American Jews and Israel: what now?


I used to irritate my Jewish educator friends by contending that the experience of attending Hebrew school, either on the weekend or in the afternoon hours after the “regular” school day, alienated more kids than it inspired. In my day, it was four afternoons a week plus Sunday mornings, in an era still free of soccer practices and overprogrammed schedules typical of middle-class Jewish life. I...

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