Education

Dear Board Members Garcia, Flores-Aguilar, and Vladovic: We write to you today to ask for your support. We have counted on it before and you have been there for us in the past. You have been there to push for A-G classes, small schools, decentralizing LAUSD, sending QEIA funds to schools with the greatest need. But now when the need is greatest, you have chosen not to fight for our children and instead you have given in to fear and hopelessness. This budget crisis is enormous, none of us doubt that. It is clearly too large, in fact, to balance by cutting and cutting. We need to find new sources of funds and that means fighting against those who would choose the politically easiest path to balance the budget: taking from the most vulnerable, our children. But instead of leading...
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Dear Mr. Charles Ryan, Director of Arizona Department of Corrections, As a college student at the University of Arizona, I am very concerned with the educational budget cuts, which since 2008 have been reduced by 21.8%. In Arizona we have currently reached the point where our prison spending has exceeded our educational funding. After doing some research as to why this might be the case, I noticed that within the last 10 years the spending, for Correctional Facilities, has increased by 75%. (Online degrees, 2012) Although this may be a beneficial factor, because a reason that prison funding has increased, is due to the rise of the intake of prisoners. As a result this means that more criminals are kept off the streets and will lead to lower crime activity. However, the Arizona...
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Colleagues, Some members of the department have expressed concern about the unholy mix of TA/instructor wages and graduate funding packages in CUPE’s bargaining with the university administration. Some have suggested that CUPE only represents the graduate students in their capacity as paid TA’s or instructors, not as funded graduate students, and that this makes it difficult for faculty members to support the strike. In some cases, our colleagues are only offering observations about the legal “facts”; in other cases, they are expressing a preference. Others, myself included, want to know what other alternative we have given our graduate students. The administration vigorously objects to the idea that CUPE can negotiate the terms of the funding package; but they are not doing so...
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Dear Professor Pattison We write to express our concerns regarding the new ‘opt out’ policy on lecture recording that is being piloted across the University this semester. Our concerns are both pedagogical and ethical. In this letter we present these concerns for the University’s consideration. The University has identified student retention as a significant problem. There is already significant evidence that lecture recording has a negative impact on student attendance. The pilot ‘opt out’ policy, which seeks to universalise lecture recordings, will only compound this trend. Student attendance at lectures and issues of student retention are related. The University should be developing policies that engage the students more with university life, not providing opportunities for them...
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Greetings and Salutations! We haven’t met yet, but we will meet soon. I need to apologize in advance because I am going to be one of “those” parents. You know, the ones who are constantly checking in, perhaps over protective to a fault. In my defense I feel like I know a bit more about this whole school thing than most parents. Having taught kids in the same city where I grew up and now teaching teachers (who, in many ways, are just bigger kids) in a city far away from home, I have learned a good deal about what goes on in classrooms nowadays. There is also the matter of me teaching university courses that deal with educational policy (yuk!) and educational psychology (wow!). Did you know that most of our current educational policy flies in the face of educational psychology,...
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Dear Broadcasters However difficult it may have been to organise, the forthcoming Leaders’ Debate presents a welcome opportunity for the voting public to hear how the different political parties would act in government over the next five years, if given the power to do so. Among the millions of children and young people who are affected by government policies every day, one group in particular rely more directly on government than any other – the 68,000 children in care.* For these children and young people, too-often invisible in political debates and without a vote of their own, the state has a special responsibility. Anyone seeking government office, not least hoping to be Prime Minister, takes on a ‘corporate’ responsibility for all children in care. We believe it is our duty...
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Dear Prospective Graduate Student, We appreciate your interest in the graduate program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln! You will find our English Department a vibrant, diverse, and intellectually stimulating place to do your graduate work. We currently have approximately 120 graduate students in our MA and PhD programs in Literary and Cultural Studies, Creative Writing, and Composition and Rhetoric. We offer graduate coursework in all these areas. There are also opportunities for students to obtain Area of Specialization Certificates in affiliated interdisciplinary programs or Graduate Certificates such as the Certificate in the Teaching of Writing. Students with a BA may apply for the MA or for direct admission into the PhD. Please note that students who apply with a BA for...
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Dear Former Nursing Professor, As a student, I had very little appreciation for you, your knowledge and methods outside of passing your class. I thought you were a meticulously difficult grader, impossible to reason with, and incapable of seeing the perspective of the student. You had a reputation as one of the strict ones, and I think you both deserved it and cultivated it. I valued what I got in lecture more than I'd admit to other classmates, but I didn't value it enough just then. The unique opportunities afforded me related to the institution I attended college at, as well as your connections and so on - I valued them enough at the time, but it wasn't really enough. As a new grad waiting to take boards? I was more focused on applying for jobs and studying than anything else....
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Dear Young Men of Kappa Delta Rho, Take a moment and dream with me: It’s graduation. You worked this season the hardest you knew how. So you graduate, celebrate, say goodbye to the chapters of your life you will never redo again. Excited because you got a job in your field. Not a dream job, but one that will surely open doors. You move and settle in, and soon you meet the woman you wished you met in college. She’s amazing. You marry and while you realize it’s not perfect, every day you become more fond of the special woman you call wife. Two years in and you find out that you’re expecting. Wow, you’re having a baby! This is scary, crazy. But you were just a kid, you tell yourself. The baby arrives—she’s a sweet baby girl who has your cleft chin. Wow again. The three of you head...
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Dear Everyone Presently Involved In My Kids’ Education, You won’t remember me as Elizabeth. Or Liz. Or Grace’s, Jack’s, Henry’s, George’s and/or Nina’s Mom. You will remember me, this year anyway, as That Parent. I’m going to own it right from the get-go in order to save us both time and disappointment. You’re welcome. No doubt, you are some of the most under-compensated, under-appreciated individuals on earth. And not for one moment do I want you to believe that you are under-appreciated or under-valued by me. You aren’t. You hold a very dear place in my heart as a catalyst to ensuring that these kids can move out one day. And survive for more than 22 minutes. We have just embarked upon what is sure to be an indescribably long school year, and I feel it’s incumbent upon me to...
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