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Alan Singer
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Alan Singer is a social studies educator in the Department of Teaching, Literacy and Leadership at Hofstra University in Long Island, New York and the editor of Social Science Docket (a joint publication of the New York and New Jersey Councils for Social Studies). He taught at a number of secondary schools in New York City, including Franklin K. Lane High School and Edward R. Murrow High School. He is the author of Education Flashpoints: Fighting for America's Schools (Routledge, 2014) which is based on his award winning Huffington Post blogs, Teaching to Learn, Learning to Teach: A Handbook for Secondary School Teachers (Routledge, 2013), Social Studies For Secondary Schools, 4th Edition (Routledge, 2014), New York and Slavery, Time to Teach the Truth (SUNY, 2008), and Teaching Global History (Routledge, 2011). All opinions expressed in these blogs are my own.

Entries by Alan Singer

What Is the Purpose of Education?

(5) Comments | Posted February 8, 2016 | 6:39 AM

In interviews for positions on the New York State Board of Regents, State Assembly Education chair Catherine Nolan asks candidates to share their vision for education in the state. These are my views on the purpose of education. During the interview process candidates are also asked how they will stay...
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Pearson Rips Off Students with Tests Designed for Failure

(8) Comments | Posted February 4, 2016 | 6:43 AM

New York State, in partnership with Pearson Education, is making it increasingly harder and more expensive to become a teacher without evidence that their demands and tests will improve education in the state. Last April Governor Cuomo smuggled a requirement into the state budget without discussion or input...

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New York University Betrays Teaching and Education

(13) Comments | Posted February 1, 2016 | 6:37 AM

It may call itself "a private university in the public service," but NYU is a multi-national big business and New York City real estate mogul whose previous president earned $1.5 million a year. Its latest "offering" puts NYU on the list of...

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New York Alliance Condemns Cuomo Mis-Education Budget

(3) Comments | Posted January 28, 2016 | 6:46 AM

The New York State Alliance for Quality Education( AQE) condemns Governor Andrew Cuomo's proposed education budget as "woefully inadequate." Cuomo requested an additional $961 million for New York schools. The Board of Regents, the governing body for education in New York, requested a $2.4 billion budget increase. AQE...

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Battle to Reshape Education in New York State

(6) Comments | Posted January 25, 2016 | 6:47 AM

The NYS Allies for Public Education endorsed Dr. Betty Rosa for Chancellor of the NYS Board of Regents and Regent Beverly Ouderkirk for Vice Chancellor. Other educational advocacy groups supporting Rosa and Ouderkirk include Class Size Matters, Long Island Opt Out, New York BATS,...

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Parents and Local Politicians Combat Success Academy Charter Network

(2) Comments | Posted January 22, 2016 | 10:52 AM

Success Academy is New York City's largest charter school network. About 11,000 children attend its thirty-six schools. The network receives federal and state funding and free space from New York City for all of its schools. But apparently it also discriminates against students with disabilities, at least according to a...

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George Washington's Birthday Cake

(1) Comments | Posted January 20, 2016 | 10:01 AM

Scholastic publishers evidently thought United States school children needed a new picture book to help them celebrate George Washington's birthday. Unfortunately the book also seems to celebrate slavery in the United States and has now been recalled. The book is narrated by an enslaved African young girl named...

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Will This Year's High School Seniors Get to Witness the Burst of an Economic Bubble?

(14) Comments | Posted January 18, 2016 | 7:18 AM

Spring semester in New York State high school social studies classes usually means studying the "dismal science," economics. In too many classes economics is taught like chemistry or trigonometry -- memorizing definitions and analyzing charts, graphs and equations which describe a hypothetical system that never quite corresponds to...

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This is Bad! Attack on Teacher Unions is an Assault on Students, Workers and Democracy

(3) Comments | Posted January 14, 2016 | 7:22 AM

The New York Times headline said "Mandatory Union Fees Getting Hard Look by Supreme Court." The picture caption showed "Harlan Elrich, a high school mathematics teacher in California," who "is party to a lawsuit challenging mandatory union dues." Of course fees and dues are not the same thing,...
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What Is the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.?

(16) Comments | Posted January 11, 2016 | 6:47 AM

January 15, 2016 marks the 87th birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who was assassinated in 1968. This year it will be celebrated on Monday January 18. This blog offers lesson material for teaching about the "other" more radical Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. It is designed to conform...

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Transform the New York State Board of Regents From the Inside

(2) Comments | Posted January 7, 2016 | 6:37 AM

Chancellor Merryl Tisch and Vice-Chancellor Anthony Bottar are both resigning from the New York State Board of Regents, the governing body for education in New York State. Bottar represents a region in upstate New York and Tisch holds an out-large position. With this blog, I officially declare my...

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Marco Rubio Declares War on College Education

(43) Comments | Posted January 4, 2016 | 7:01 AM

Frank Bruni of the New York Times finds it hard to believe that the Republican Party establishment considers Senator Marco Rubio of Florida a viable candidate for President of the United States. Rubio can't seem to make up his mind on immigration reform or apparently obey

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Students Call Me the 'Technosaurus'

(4) Comments | Posted December 28, 2015 | 7:23 AM

Technosaurus: A technosaurus is a technical dinosaur skeptical about the value of technology in the classroom.

A rich guy from a venture capital firm decides that every public school student in New York City should learn to be a computer coder. Sounds like a bid for the worst...

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College Protesters Are Not a Threat to Free Speech

(2) Comments | Posted December 23, 2015 | 10:06 AM

College students protesting against offensive speech and behavior and buildings and schools named after racists and slaveholders have been accused of rampant political correctness and trying to censor opposition. In its September 2015 issue The Atlantic magazine declared, "Today's college students can't seem to take a joke," forcing...

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Instead of Honoring Slaveholders, Slave Traders and Racists

(12) Comments | Posted December 21, 2015 | 6:45 AM

A campaign to honor the struggle to end slavery in the United States is an excellent social studies project to engage students as active citizens responding to racism and in shaping the future the United States.

Students at Princeton University in New Jersey are engaged in a major battle over...

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Even Santa Can't Save Pearson (Mis)Education

(2) Comments | Posted December 17, 2015 | 6:43 AM

With apologizes to Clement Moore
'Twas the week before Christmas Markets in fluster Pearson's business plan sinking 'Tis naught but bluster.

Its shift to digital sales
Left print media behind
Ain't bringing in the profit
Too late to rewind.

Common Core looks real shaky
...

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Opt-Out Campaign Must Continue

(3) Comments | Posted December 14, 2015 | 11:30 AM

The parent and teacher campaign to have children opt-out of high-stakes Common Core aligned testing is remarkably successful. In New York, 20% of students refused to take the high-stakes tests last April. The campaign is so successful that politicians on national and state levels from both...

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The United States Can Control Weapons of Mass Killing

(16) Comments | Posted December 10, 2015 | 8:26 AM

Memphis, Tennessee, January 1 -- Five people wounded Dallas, Texas, January 4 -- Three people dead, one wounded Queens, New York, January 24 -- Three people dead, one wounded. Troup County, Georgia, January 29 -- Five people dead. Tyrone, Missouri, February 27 -- Eight people dead, one wounded. Stockton, California,...
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Will Every Student Succeed? Not With This New Law

(16) Comments | Posted December 6, 2015 | 6:50 AM

Last week the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to jettison penalties for schools, districted and states mandated by the Bush era No Child Left Behind law. NCLB was signed into law by George Bush in 2002 and was supposedly designed to expose and solve "achievement gaps" in American...

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Student Anti-Scanning Campaign Spreads

(30) Comments | Posted December 3, 2015 | 7:39 AM

More than 90,000 New York City public high school students including more than a third of the city's high school population, are scanned by metal detectors when they arrive in school each day. At least 193 New York City public high schools have metal detectors. However the metal...

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