Season 2

The new school year is underway, and we are getting ready for the second season of Chasing Bailey.   


The Pandemic is endemic, or nearly so.  We’re still getting sick at all the wrong times, but the impact on most who actually test positive for COVID-19 are annoying rather than debilitating.  But the pandemic left us with a huge educational hangover, and the headlines really are screaming at us.  As always, our interest is in the experience of those who are on the ground. 


The headlines are still screaming at us … but those headlines are not written by teachers and principals.  As we saw in the last episode, most media headlines simply don’t reflect the experience or concerns of those considered actual educational experts.    

Have you ever taken the time to really listen to teachers talk about their work, about their joys and frustrations, and about how they grow as they work together?   This episode is an opportunity to do just that.   Bailey teachers talk about their experience and offer wisdom for all of us as they do so.    

Today we don’t talk enough about John Dewey’s call to educational equity and its impact on democracy.  Instead, small groups of parents (most notably Moms for Liberty) are prompting battles in local school boards to ban books, to fight racially inclusive curriculum, and to limit the rights and constrain the very existence of transgender and questioning youth.  

Folks have been debating how to teach reading at least since 1985.  At that time, the issue was framed as top-down vs. bottom-up.   

This makes the debate seem “tidy,” just two sides with clear delineation.   You were FOR phonics (bottom up) or you were FOR textual understanding (top down), but you couldn’t be for both.