I was going to post a blog this month titled, "Workshop is a Structure, Not a Curriculum." Anyone reading this knows it was a response to Sunday's New York Times article "In the Fight Over How to Teach Reading, This Guru Makes a Major Retreat." I wrote the article in defense of workshop instruction, and my exhaustion that educators are wasting time blaming instead of adjusting methods and materials to teach all students to read. To be clear, I do not believe any curriculum can meet the needs of every reader because teaching reading is both science and art, and children are complex.
But then Uvalde.
And before that Buffalo.
And before that... Name any state in this country and you can likely point to a mass shooting in recent months and years.
I have experienced school shootings for nearly twenty years. In 1994, in the fall of my senior year of high school, a 16-year-old boy was shot outside my school cafeteria. I was upstairs in the photography room when the bullet was fired. I was terrified and my first thought was for my brother, a freshman at the time. "Is Nick in the cafeteria?" I panicked.
I don't have very much to say. I have cried, pleaded, marched, donated, and prayed. But change hasn't come to America.
I dropped my children off at school today. A fourth-grader and a kindergarten student. And I drove away asking, "Will they be safe?"
That we live in a nation where parents have to worry about the chances of their children returning home at the end of the day is shameful. That we live in a nation where teachers have to sacrifice their own life to protect students is disgraceful.
I can't fight over reading instruction today.
I have had enough.
Still, I will get up, plead, march, donate and vote. What are you doing?