Featured education leader and important book – this one is for Kids too!
The Education of Sam Sanders by T.S. Poetter
Review by Conny Jensen:

SamSandersThis book had me captivated from the very beginning! This story needs to be read by parents, teachers, by everyone with a care or concern about public education, but especially by school board members, state legislators, politicians and all who support the practice of high-stakes standardized testing and in doing so are condoning the implementation of rigid curriculum that is harmful to children and disrespectful to teachers.

A lot of damage is already done. Schools are now even depriving kindergarten children of all play; an important developmental need that helps grow a healthy brain and would really contribute to improved learning ability in later grades.

Instead children receive large doses of teacher directed (and often mind numbing scripted) instruction during which they cannot ask questions or make remarks. I have seen this in practice in several K grades and it broke my heart!!

Our public schools should not treat children as if they are invisible, but if we do not collectively oppose such unconscionable practices now, schools may actually become like the one chillingly portrayed in The Education of Sam Sanders where teachers become mere score keepers and learning is mere memorization of facts coming via the state’s computers, instead of generated from student interest and learning outcomes internalized through engaging projects.

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The following comes from the book. We all need to ask ourselves if this is what we want to subject our kids to when we send them to school! I’d rather have my kid be a Sam Sanders who refuses to take the tests!

“All that students had been learning in his class would come out now; the test would show what the students knew. He stared down at his terminal showing how the students were doing on the questions as they progressed through the test. He saw them doing well, miserably, as their right and wrong answers tabulated in a continuous fashion right before his eyes.

The scores go directly to the state computer; the state closely monitored each test site by computer and by camera. He could not coach the students in any way, shape, or form; he couldn’t give them any sorts of cues or prompts. ..All the while he knew the the computer wouldn’t tabulate a score for Sam, and that Sam’s “0” would count against the class, and against him.”

Colorado Events 

Oct. 10th 6:30-7:30 pm
Learn how to Opt your child out of high-stakes testing:
Please join us for an informational meeting on Wednesday, October 10th from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. at the Highlands Ranch Library located at 9292 Ridgeline Blvd. City: Highlands Ranch, CO 80129
Education experts and caring parents, Angela Engel and Peggy Robertson will present information at 6:30 and 7:00 with time for questions after each session.
Angela Engel – angelaengel.com and uniting4kids.com
Peggy Robertson – unitedoptout.com and pegwithpen.com
Learn more about the damaging pressure, inequalities, and outrageous costs of high-stakes standardized testing, learn what TCAP doesn’t tell you.http://www.facebook.com/events/424059054323880/?notif_t=plan_user_joined

October 15th, 6:00- 8:00 pm
“Teach” Movie Screening and discussion
Join parents, teachers, and community members to watch an enlightening movie that documents the effects of NLCB on teaching and education reform.  Also, hear how teachers around the country have tried to make their voices heard. Discuss ways to improve education for all of our students.  Sponsored by Club 30 of the DCTA.- Montview Presbyterian Church- 1980 Dahlia St. Denver, CO 80220
Click for invitation here
Watch the film trailr here

October 22nd, 2-4:30 pm
“Race to Nowhere” Film screening and Conversation
The student led event will be very informative.  Alex Kacsh will facilitate a conversation afterwards about public education.
Register here
Oriental Theater
4335 W. 44th Avenue, Denver, Colorado 80212
Learn more on Facebook

November 30th, 5:30 pm
Thank you and a Gratitude Party

Park Lane
460 S. Marion Pkwy,
Denver CO 80209
Please mark your calendars for a celebration to recognize Colorado’s Education Leaders. Friday, November 30th 5:30 pm. Special guest and honoree, Representative Judy Solano.

I don’t say “thank you” enough and I want to recognize the volunteers that work with me to dignify the lives and learning of children.
Lisa Alonge Morgan, Conny Jensen, Patrick Anderson, Betsy Angert, Nina Bishop, Toni Tucker, Jane Diamond, Joel Lachance, Yosuke Carter, Peg Robertson, Don Perl, Robert and Nancy Wirsing, and Don Glines.

If you would like to bring an appetizer or bottle of wine to contribute, please contact me at angela_engel@msn.com


Billboard campaign underway – please mail your contributions to:
(No amount is too small)
The Coalition for Better Education
2424 22nd Avenue
Greeley, Co 80631