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My Blog Is Two Years Old Today :)

January 25, 2015

Yep. It’s Happy Second Birthday for deutsch29.wordpress.com.

On January 25, 2013, I decided to start this blog. It wasn’t many months before that I had learned firsthand what a blog was, and that I had been reading blogs such as Tom Aswell’s Louisiana Voice and Mike Deshotel’s Louisiana Educator for education news. Indeed, for many, blogs had become the news source in lieu of a Louisiana mainstream media that had gone suspiciously silent in questioning Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal’s and the 2012 Louisiana legislature’s efforts to test teachers using student scores; to kill teacher job protections, and to promote vouchers as a means of defunding traditional public education.

Prior to starting this blog, I had been researching and writing on the legislatively-forced, test-driven reform that had taken me by surprise in March 2012. By late 2012, I had sent the results of my research to the state board of education, and I had sent it to legislators. My research writings began to accumulate, and I needed a place to store my work.

I needed cyber-storage.

I first saw my blog as a filing cabinet for my research papers. I did not see it for what it is today: A powerful force for advocating for public education nationwide and for exposing the fraud that is corporate reform.

On the evening of January 25, 2013, I thought, “It’s time.” I knew of only two sites from which I might choose to set up a blog: Blogger.com and WordPress.com. I chose WordPress.com because education historian Diane Ravitch has her blog with WordPress, and who wouldn’t want to be like Diane Ravitch, huh?

When I signed up with WordPress, I decided to pay for my blog ($99 per year) because I thought that would 1) prevent ads on my site and 2) help preserve my posts– that they would be safer if I paid for my space.

Onto this new blog I uploaded six papers I wrote on such topics as Louisiana’s 2011 value-added modeling (VAM)  pilot, Louisiana school performance score issues, and Louisiana’s Teach for America (TFA) study.

And I wrote my first post, creatively entitled, My very first blog entry ever. Here is the full text:

Some months ago, a friend told me, “You need to start a blog.”  I did not think much about it.  I thought, “I don’t have time. Besides, what will I write?”

Well.  Talk about turn that statement on its head.

For the past couple of months I have been writing numerous education pieces, mostly to correct sleights of statistics performed by would-be educational reformers.  I am at the point where I realize that I need some permanent, public place where I might record my writings.

I need a blog.

The decision to begin my blog was in part inspired by Gary Rubinstein.  He writes on his blog as little or as often as a particular occasion warrants.  I did not want to be trapped into having to post a certain number of pieces in a given timeline, and in my blog naivete,  thought I must keep to a schedule.  Gary’s entries are so informative, yet he keeps to no schedule.  Thanks, Gary, for providing your unintentional yet valued example of blogger freedom to me.

So, here I am, making my as-of-yet unacknowledged entry to the blogger universe.

Happy to be on board.

–M

It is now January 2015.

As to my “unacknowledged entry”: No longer. With 680,653 views from readers in approximately 170 countries as of this writing, my work has certainly been “acknowledged.”

On January 25, 2013, I was concerned that I would not be able to keep up with a blog. Well, it looks like “keeping up” has not been an issue: In two years, I published 424 posts (including this one).

That equals approximately three posts every five days.

As to those posts, here are stats on the top five most popular posts from January 25, 2013, to January 25, 2015:

My most popular post to date is A Brief Audit of Bill Gates’ Common Core Spending (August 27, 2013), with 20,748 views.

The second is not a post per se but is my bio, About Mercedes Schneider, with 11,100 views.

Ranking third is Steve Perry’s Dissertation: Heavy on Lit Review, Slight on Scholarship (May 18, 2013), with 10,842 views.

Fourth is a fairly recent post, PARCC Is Down to DC Plus Ten States, and Louisiana Isn’t One of Them (December 5, 2014), at 9,690 views, likely since Louisiana is the only supposed PARCC state taking some bastardized “PARCC” test administered by Data Recognition Corp (DRC) rather than official PARCC consortium vendor, Pearson. Pearson is in on the arrangement; however, in signature corporate-reform “accountability” fashion, Louisiana parents and teachers are being purposely excluded from the terms of the agreement hatched by Louisiana Superintendent John White, DRC, Pearson, and possibly the PARCC consortium and Louisiana state board (BESE) President Chas Roemer.

Finally, the fifth most popular post of all time is Those 24 Common Core 2009 Work Group Members (April 23, 2014), with 9,069 views. However, this “24 Work Group Members” post is probably my most misunderstood, only because the 24 members were supposed to develop the Common Core (CC) “anchor” standards, not the full-blown CC. Supposedly, the expanded work group, with 101 members, developed full-blown CC. Therefore, most viewers are likely looking for this post, A Tale of Two NGA Press Releases, and Then Some (April 25, 2014), which includes examination of the expanded, 101 work group members– only five of whom identified themselves as current classroom teachers.

So much to write about!

Thank you for reading my blog and for being part of my second “blog birthday” celebration.

It has truly been a pleasure.

2nd birthday

_______________________________________________

Schneider is a southern Louisiana native, career teacher, trained researcher, and author of the ed reform whistle blower, A Chronicle of Echoes: Who’s Who In the Implosion of American Public Education

previti chronicle pic

23 Comments
  1. ira shor permalink

    Happy Birthday premier blogster!

  2. You do a fabulous job! Thank you so much!!!!

  3. Your blog is 2 years old. Mine is 2 months. I hope I can do as well as you have! Congratulations.

  4. Hannah permalink

    Congratulations! Your amazing powers of sniffing out Corporate Reform BS are amazing! Thank you for all you do!!!!

  5. jonpelto permalink

    You work has been amazing! You (and your blog) have had a truly profound impact on the debate surrounding the corporate education reform industry’s efforts to destroy public education in the United States. We have a long way still to go in our battle to put the meaning of public back in public education but the victories we’ve had are in no small part a result of you and your work! Thank you Mercedes!

  6. Congratulations. And here is to many more years of providing such great work to your readers.

  7. Thank you for teaching an old dog (me) a lot of new tricks.

  8. Laura H. Chapman permalink

    Congratulations, and thanks for the history lesson on how and why you started this venture. I have been mulling a similar start…unpublished papers first, then who knows what.

    Good to know a fixed scheduled is not needed. You are truly blessed with a gift for investigative reporting, and there is no better time for that than at this moment.

  9. Want to help me give Mercedes a wonderful birthday present? Go here before she sees I put this on her blog! http://www.gofundme.com/g0ehic

  10. storkteach permalink

    Happy blog birthday Mercedes. Thank you for being one of the few true investigative journalists (without that official title) exposing the corporate reform of education. I continue to be amazed at your skills!

  11. patriciahale permalink

    Congrats. Thanks for your research.

  12. liznola716 permalink

    Mercedes: thank you for the tremendous work you do and the enlightenment you spread around the nation. With people like you here in Louisiana speaking the unvarnished, documented, irrefutable proof of the corruption of “reform,” I am sure we will eventually triumph. Or die trying. With admiration!

  13. Use For CC permalink

    Happy Birthday to our favorite blog:))

    >

  14. Congratulations! Thanks for your dedication!

  15. Jan Kasal permalink

    Congratulations to your 2nd blogging anniversary. You are in your Element. As Ken Robinson would say.

  16. Annat permalink

    Thank you! You have opened my eyes and inspired me as a teacher and parent to fight for our children.

  17. Eric Brandon permalink

    I would like to thank you for your hard work and your courage. You and other bloggers have inspired me to be more active in fighting the testing craze that is so detrimental to my children’s education.

  18. I want to terminate my subscription.

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