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The Best and Brightest (and whitest?)

We’re just about finished jumping through the hoops for getting into middle school–we’ve toured all the schools, filled out the applications, and Liam just finished a round of tests with perhaps a few more still to come. Keep in mind that we’re talking middle school, people–6th freaking grade. Not high school, not college, not a top-secret government agency.  One particularly high-strung classmate of Liam’s wailed to her mom that if …

Cathie’s Challenge, the City’s Future

photo: Michael Appleton, New York Times It’s not the hat, although really, that hat? I’m not going to be one of those women who disses people on the basis of their fashion choices. Besides, there are so many other reasons to diss Cathie Black; we don’t have to pay any attention to that hat. Did you see the article about Cathie in today’s Times? It made me want to like …

The Price of Public Education

Caleb’s school is having a fundraising drive. The PTA wants to get 85% of families to donate to its General Fund, which is used for everything you can imagine, short of paying teachers’ salaries. When I was PTA President at Liam’s school a few years back, fundraising was the hardest part of the job (second-hardest part of the job? Not screaming back at people who were–by screaming at me–screaming at …

Why I’m Not the New Chancellor of NYC Schools

I know why Mayor Bloomberg didn’t tap me to take over from Joel Klein. I’m overqualified. I taught public high school for four years, have a doctorate in literature and have been teaching college students for longer than I care to remember.  Both of my kids go to public schools; I went to public schools until I got to college.  But apparently the best qualification to run the NYC schools …