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Overheard

January 01, 2004 1 min read
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“No Black Need Apply.”
—Lettering on a mock flier, which advertised openings for advanced placement teachers, anonymously distributed this past summer to faculty at Boston Latin School in Massachusetts. In October, Boston Latin teacher Gregory Turpin, who is African American, admitted that he had authored the flier to draw attention to the lack of AP class assignments given to black colleagues.

“This is a strategy for class-size reduction, not quality education.”
—Fay Clark, an executive director with Broward County Public Schools, on Florida’s new fast-track graduation law, which allows students to earn a high school diploma in three years by doubling up core courses and skipping several otherwise-required electives.

“It’s a science now.”
—Vickie Mabry, spokeswoman for the Association of Fund-Raising Distributors & Suppliers, on student fund raising. Parent and youth groups raised $1.9 billion in 2001 by selling candy, gift wrap, and other goodies supplied by her organization’s members.

“Teachers care a lot. Sometimes they care too much and try to provide too much help.”
—Dennis Tompkins, spokesman for the New York State United Teachers union, on why educators might help students cheat. State officials discovered 21 cases of teacher-assisted cheating on standardized exams from 1999 through spring 2002.

“Your principal...works really hard. I just had to get my makeup done.”
—Actress Joan Cusack, on the difference between the head job at Agassiz School of the Fine and Performing Arts, in Chicago, and her role as a principal in the recent film School of Rock. Cusack and 1,600 other celebrities and executives subbed for Chicago-area school leaders in October during the city’s “Principal for a Day” event.

A version of this article appeared in the January 02, 2004 edition of Teacher as Overheard

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