Quitting Blogging To Do TFA

Quitting Blogging To Do TFA

It is with *extremely* mixed emotions that I’m announcing that, as of midnight tonight I’m shutting down this site, the related Facebook and Twitter pages, and also my Chicago blog and Tumblr. [Some auto-scheduled tweets from over the weekend may appear in your feed or on your Facebook page, but I officially sent my last tweet last night.]

Wow, that’s hard to write. But I’m done.  You don’t need me doing this every day.  I don’t need to be doing this every day. It’s been a long, amazing ride. I’m really proud of what I’ve done, and incredibly grateful to have been allowed to do it. Thanks to everyone who’s helped make it happen.

What am I going to do instead of blogging?  Good question. You see, on a lark this past fall I applied to Teach For America. I told myself it was just for the book I was writing. Nobody was more surprised than I was when I actually made it through and got picked. I had to think long and hard whether or not to quit blogging and accept the spot.  But finally I said yes and so I’m going to Houston this summer and starting teaching — here in Brooklyn, I hope — in the fall.

Wish me luck – I’m going to need it!


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  • Good luck Alexander, make sure you teach for at least 5 years. The first 2 years are just getting grounded and the next three years you become effective. You have observed enough in classrooms to know what you are headed for if you are going to be placed in a real urban school with real disciplinary issues.

    Rod Estvan

  • Oh No! I read you before the my morning newspaper. I wish you well. Teaching is a great profession and I'm sure you'll stay involved in journalism.

    Always remember that you helped many teachers who needed anonymity. You helped them fight against tyrannical principals and CO incompetency. You allowed posters to respond to the lack of legal information available for school staff.

    I will miss the posters on here but especially will miss Rod Estvan's expertise not only in the area of special education but the political circus in Chicago.

  • Bummer! You have done a phenomenal job aggregating the information and posing thought provoking questions. I will miss your blog! Best of luck with TFA. What an interesting turn of events for you. Thanks again for the great forum.

  • Isn't this post a day early?

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    What a shame. Please be sure to keep a log and let us know how the Teach for America program kool-aid tastes. And after five whole weeks of indoctrination/training and two whole years of "teaching," I am sure you will confirm for yourself that teachers are, indeed, just a bunch of lazy union layabouts. I hope you get a school in Brooklyn too. Interesting that you are starting the program on April 1st.

  • I am sure this is an April fools' joke.

  • Way to go! Congrats, and thanks for all your blogging contributions over the years.

  • I wish you the best and hope you make it past your 2 year commitment (maybe even you're hoping to be a lifelong educator) and this isn't just research for your next book. Lord knows we don't need anymore people contributing to the teacher churn that afflicts many poor performing schools, then claiming to be experts in the field.

  • In reply to Evan Velleman:

    I wish Russo or an investigative reporter would sign up to be a teacher in a self-contained special education classroom in a low performing school in CPS-maybe once they wrote the expose things would change for our students with disabilities.

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    No way - I'm not buying it...April Fools for sure! Nice try ;)

  • Good luck, Alexander! I think this is a gutsy and brave move that I applaud you for.

  • Hmmm. I believe today is the acceptance deadline for one of the TFA cohorts, yet tomorrow is April 1st.

    Is Russo is perky enough for TFA? That's the question.

  • Well he's not young and dumb so…..

  • Happy trails. Don't get your heart broken.

  • I'm not convinced. He pulled an April Fools Joke last year on this site.

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    Yeah, this pretty much seems like the last thing he would actually do (sorry in advance if this is your real choice - it just doesn't seem like you!)

  • Made-up news?

  • If you are serious take my advice and run right now Find a good bar and get drunk.All these years you have been talking the talk,now you have to walk the walk.If you manage to survive for five years drop us a line and let us know how it felt.

  • thanks to everyone who commented -- as many of you figured out it was an early April Fool's -- i'm not quitting blogging and i didn't apply or get into TFA.

    as far as pranks go, this might have been my best since "Vitale's Revenge," way back in 2006 when a pretended to have come across an org chart for CPS.

  • Ok You fooled me-glad you're staying-cheaper to read this blog than engage in retail therapy.

  • http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2014pres/04/20140402a.html

    This just came through via CPS mail-National Asbestos Week.

    A lot of CPS employees have been exposed to asbestos in its friable state. There was a law suit from a husband who lost his wife and mother of his young children due to asbestos related cancer. CPS was told to not sand the asbestos tiles because it spreads the dust.

    Now we have rehab going on in some schools, privatized janitors ( no training which was required of the CPS janitors) who have no clue as to what asbestos is and again we are being exposed to the dangers of asbestos. Employees need to speak up about this, CTU needs to be involved and OSHA needs to inspect these old buildings and also make sure maintenance employees do not endanger themselves or others by mishandling the asbestos. Parents need to look around their children's schools to make sure the asbestos tiles are not cracked etc.

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