joe nathan

“We have halls of fame for athletes and entertainers and should afford the same degree of recognition to our star educators and through that channel of the education profession … this is an excellent idea.” That’s how Arthur Dorman, a Minnesota educator, responded to a recent column praising Oklahoma’s Educator Hall of Fame. Most but [...]

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Students Mac Schwartz and Mariah Van Heel and U.S. Sen. Al Franken agreed on several important things when the senator visited Forest Lake High School on Oct. 22. Fortunately, both the school district and the senator are not just talking – they are working hard to advance ideas displayed during the visit. That’s good for [...]

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Wouldn’t it be valuable for Minnesota to honor – all together, in one place that thousands of people could visit – educators who have “had a profound impact on students”? Might people like Donald Draayer, Milo Cutter, Kenneth Dragseth, Mary Beth Blegen, Sandra Peterson, Lesa Clarkson and Megan Hall someday have their pictures posted and [...]

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  Pounding basketballs and children sitting on sofas come to mind as I think about the $40 million that Minnesota has just made available to families for early childhood program scholarships. While the money may be used well, I think it’s too early to describe this as a “major step forward,” as one advocate asserts. [...]

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It’s not surprising that some Minnesota educators are angry about how high-stakes MCA testing operated during the past year and how some newspapers reported results. The rules changed, there were statewide computer “freezes” caused by problems with the testing company’s technology, and one of the state’s tests was much harder. Whether from suburbs like Hopkins, [...]

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    Maria, Anna, Oscar, Tong and Adam have things that high school students and their parents may find useful. In a new, free booklet, these students describe how they saved thousands of dollars and gained enormously, by taking dual-credit (for high school and college) courses. Some refer to these school choice programs – including [...]

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As we start a new school year, I recall that there may be few people more miserable than a seventh grade boy, whose voice is changing, in a choral music class – the kind of class where youngsters are expected to sing every day. That’s the situation I found myself in many years ago at [...]

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