Don’t Be Defined By Who You Were in High School

This blog was originally published on Finding Common Ground at Education Week by Peter DeWitt on November 22, 2012 9:53 AM.

Failure is something to learn from, not run from.

The other day I ran into a guy I went to high school with which seems to be a lifetime ago. The first thought that came to mind was that it was over twenty years ago. Then I thought about how quickly life goes by. It doesn't seem that way when we are younger. When we are young, life ticks by slowly as we wait to become old enough to drive or graduate from high school.

Although we both only live about an hour from where we grew up it was the first time I had seen him since we went to high school. It's funny how running into someone from our past…

Is There Really Dignity For All?

Peter DeWitt (@PeterMDeWitt) is an elementary principal in upstate, New York. He blogs at Finding Common Ground for Education Week and is the author of Dignity for All: Safeguarding LGBT Students (Corwin Press). He can be found at www.petermdewitt.com. Teach.com is thrilled to welcome Peter…

What is Gifted and Talented?

According to the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC), gifted people are defined as “those who demonstrate outstanding levels of aptitude or competence in one or more domains.” Ultimately, educators aim to individualize education for all students so that no one falls significantly behind or, in the case of gifted students, becomes bored. Many public schools offer gifted and talented programs for students with exceptionally high aptitude in specific subject areas.   Identifying Gifted and Talented Students

Understanding the Chicago Teacher’s Strike

The nearly two-week-long Chicago teachers’ strike has finally come to a close. The results: “a ‘half-loaf’ kind of day,” according to CNN, with educators and city officials not completely satisfied with the results of settled negotiations. What caused the teachers of the third-largest school district in the United States to strike? The main impetus behind it had to do with a newly proposed teacher evaluation system, job security and several other issues.


Sex Education Vs. Abstinence Education: Part 2

Sex education is an issue of much debate, as people on both sides struggle to decide how to address adolescent sexuality. To shed some light on the issue, Teach.com interviewed educators from either side of the debate. In this section, we spoke to Abby Rosenstein, program manager of School Health Equity at Advocates for Youth, an organization that promotes policies and programs that support young people’s sexual health and rights. Advocates for Youth was founded as the Center for Population Options in 1980 and works in partnership with youth at the local, state, national and inter…

Sex Education Vs. Abstinence Education: Part 1

In middle school and high school, students begin to face complex issues that go beyond the classroom but still impact their education. The way schools should handle topics regarding sexuality is one such issue at the center of ongoing debate. How do we teach students about sex? Do we teach students about sex? Where does the parents’ job end and the schools’ begin?

From this issue arise two oppositional viewpoints, both of which have students’ best intentions at heart: sex education, in which students are taught about safe sex practices, and abstinence education, in which students are encouraged to abstain until marriage. The effects, implications and success o…