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May 11, 2010 1 min read
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WALT GARDNER’S REALITY CHECK

Preparation for What?

Although President Barak Obama has repeatedly urged all states to adopt “college- and career-ready” standards, in reality it is the former that dominates the reform movement. That’s nothing new. Vocational education has long been treated as a stepchild in the United States.

The only jobs that will be secure in the next decade will be those that cannot be offshored electronically, according to Alan Blinder, a former vice chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve. If he is correct, then auto mechanics, plumbers, and electricians, for example, will be working steadily while many of their degreed classmates will be on the unemployment line. —Walt Gardner

TEACHER BEAT

Dueling Teachers’ Unions

There’s a bit of a disagreement between Colorado’s teachers’ unions over the tenure bill making its way through the state legislature.

The state affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers has decided to throw its weight behind the bill, while the state’s National Education Association affiliate has come out against it.

The CEA says that since it represents more teachers its opinion is the one that should really count. “They do not represent the teachers of Colorado; the CEA does,” a spokeswoman said. That must be heartening for Colorado’s 3,000 AFT teachers. —Stephen Sawchuk

A version of this article appeared in the May 12, 2010 edition of Education Week as Blogs of the Week

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