Tracy O'Connell Novick Profile picture
May 28, 2018 24 tweets 7 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Massachusetts, how is it that we're okay with our Secretary of Education thinking we don't have to require the teaching of race relations since the Civil Rights era in U.S. history?
This has been weighing on me since Tuesday.
I think Jack encapsulates it well here:
Video is here:… (33:16 to start)
I went back and looked at what's going on with the #MAEdu U.S. history standards as proposed, and this gets even more outlandish.
(they're here:… Check p.115)
#34 looks at the U.S. Civil Rights movements, its accomplishments, and how it served as a model for later movements.
#35 (God bless us every one) is desegregation and bussing.
So, no, Massachusetts, we're not going to miss that particular part of our history.
#36 is a whole list of movements coming out of the 1960's and 70's
And #37 (the one under discussion) is "Analyze the significance of the election of Barack Obama as the nation’s first African American president of the United States and its impact on race relations."
Thus as it stands (which I think is @chriscmartell's point here:…) the Civil Rights movement shows up, does some stuff in the 1960's, (bussing), inspires others, and BOOM, Barack Obama.
I have lived the last forty years (yes, as a white person, but still), and I'm gonna tell you that wasn't it.
I am quite sure there will come a "But it doesn't mean you CAN'T teach it!" retort.
To which I'm going to tell you to please go visit your local U.S. history class right about now and see what they're squeezing in.
If it matters, you'd best put it in the standards.
I thought perhaps we could crowdsource #PeysersPurge to collect what we'd be missing if we omit race relations since 1970 from our #MAEdu U.S. history teaching.
Any takers?
#PeysersPurge would leave out the Vietnam War's impact on race and race relations (see, for example, the @washingtonpost here:…)
#PeysersPurge would leave out how the Roe v. Wade (1973) decision impacted different groups of women and what that has to do with health care disparities…
#PeysersPurge would not have us talk of the disparate impacts of the crack cocaine epidemic and how that interacted with the federal legal system
("three strikes")
There's tons of writing on that, but you can start with the @chicagotribune from last year:…
No "wet foot/dry foot" policy around Cuba (1995) and the contrast with other countries in central and south America under #PeysersPurge
If you skim down to #43, 9/11 comes in but in an international context, so #PeysersPurge would leave out how the attack and response impacted anyone who was brown, spoke a different language, or dared to dress in a fashion considered "other"
(Please tell me y'all don't need a link for that one)
All of which is to say:

The past 40 years of race relations has an enormous amount to do with where we are as a country.
Leaving that out poorly serves our kids.
And the Massachusetts Secretary of Education absolutely should not be arguing against its inclusion.

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More from @TracyNovick

Sep 12, 2018
Next up in #amreading: “White Kids: Growing Up With Privilege in a Racially Divided America” by Margaret Hagerman.
(And yes, this one I bought. Usually, I am a devoted @CWMARSinfo user.)
Read 30 tweets
Aug 28, 2018
I mean, here's the thing on hot school buildings in New England:

A) we didn't build for this. We absolutely have not built schools that were intended to have classes running in them during weeks of 90 plus degree days until recently.
B) We didn't, because we didn't need to! We didn't HAVE classes running in buildings for multiple 90-plus degree days.
(Ergo, incidently, why A/C is in admin...they're there all summer.)
C) We do now, not only because climate change, but yeah, in part climate change (also the 180/900/990 requirements from the state PLUS caution around driving=tight scheduling timelines)
Read 13 tweets
Jul 31, 2018
“Wisdom, and knowledge, as well as virtue, diffused generally among the body of the people,
“being necessary for the preservation of their rights and liberties;
“and as these depend on spreading the opportunities and advantages of education in the various parts of the country,
Read 14 tweets
Jul 10, 2018
Okay, I just stuck the House foundation budget bill in my Dropbox here:…

thread following
#FBRC said in-district to 3.75% for regular; 4.75% for voke
House bill says in-district to 4%; 5% for voke

That's your sugar to help the medicine go down, because there is no other good news here.
Health insurance change DOES add retirees and ties to three years of GIC, so...sure.
Read 18 tweets
Jul 10, 2018
Okay, the House is going to take up a "foundation budget reform" bill, we're told.

For what should #MAEdu be watching?
Well, the first thing is, while we may pick it up, so far the House is being pretty careful about references to the Commission (which I'm echoing by not tagging them with #FBRC).
Where's the references to the Commission?
Three years out.
Work of more than a year.
Hours and hours of testimony.
Pages and pages of research.
Hours and hours of discussion.
Read 21 tweets
Jun 6, 2018
4 o’clock. Tea time. Time for some #FBRC myth busting.
The first objection I hear all the time to passing an #FBRC bill is:

"We don't have the money!"

The bill calls for a phased-in implementation done by annual meetings to agree among Gov-House-Senate on that year's implementation.
It's a commitment and it's a plan.
Read 27 tweets

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