26 Replies to “OK, I’ll Bite!”

  1. It’s nice of Valeris Strauss to post the response. I guess she will post anything, as your frequent critique of her suggests.

    That’s real dialogue and fair debate.

    The Ed Reformers (TM) could learn something from her true marketplace of ideas and opinions.

  2. ^ Just like the time she posted the anonymous teacher’s letter about how TFA stole all teh jobs!

    Fair and balanced. Just like Fox News!

  3. All I can say is thank God journalists are finally seeing through the “lies, damned lies and statistics” as well as the smoke and mirror “miracles.” Each day there is a new reporting of a “miracle” school that cheated its way to “honors.” To me this journalism is crucial because one of our greatest institutions is being attacked: our public schools.

    Our schools are not perfect and they surely can, and should, be improved, but for most of us (85% of the population?) they made the American Dream a reality. In my life, I am most grateful to the public schools for what they did for me and my sons. In other advanced countries the poor were often shut out of advanced education (based on tests) at an early age (around eleven) but in our country a student could go as far as he was able. Now we are headed toward a testing meritocracy, which is so antithetical to our democratic ideals. Well, the good news is that the American people are catching on and will put a stop to all this testing nonsense. It’s happening right now.

  4. Yeah, Klein certainly bites.
    Much like his tenure in NYCPS, little amount of facts in his piece.

    (Chris, why are you always so sour?)

  5. Linda:

    As usual, you reference invisible statistics and press releases to confirm your thoughts about everything and anything. Thankfully you were part of the “85% of the population” that our schools best serve, and didn’t have to suffer under another country’s oppressive education system or, worse, a “testing meritocracy”. I wonder if your contribution is part of the “real dialogue” that Steve references above?



    My 1st response to your question is that every other post in this thread has been “sour”, including your own.

    My 2nd response is that the “sour” quality of what I wrote doesn’t detract from its relevance.

    My 3rd response is that I couldn’t care less about what bothers you at this point.

  6. Chris:

    Thank you. I heard from someone who knows you that you find my comments thought provoking.

  7. My 3rd response is that I couldn’t care less about what bothers you at this point.

    Then why did you respond?

  8. Linda:

    Do send us postcards from that delusional world you live in



    I don’t know what’s so hard about this, as another commenter couldn’t grasp it either:

    My response to your useless question does not indicate that I care about what upsets you.

  9. A delusional world?
    Like the school she taught in for several decades and the schools her children went to.

    What world does Chris live in?
    Undergrad at UCal, the typical 2 year stint in TFA to get his college years paid for and resume padding to go to grad school where he works on the triad of education, science, and progressive politics.

    Ahh, to be young and so full of it.
    Well , I was probably the same until the death of my third child and near death of my spouse knocked that out of me at age 28.

    Only 3 years Chris Smyrniotis.

  10. Phillip:

    Fine way to ignore what I replied to you with, but ok: In your haste to again incorrectly reference my background, you fail to understand what I wrote to Linda. Try again. Here’s a hint: it didn’t have to do with her background. You might find it refreshing to stop these weird attacks on people’s characters every once in awhile and focus on arguments, instead.

  11. Yes, I remember well how I too knew everything and that’s why I try to be tolerant of Chris; but I know I don’t always succeed. Mea culpa.

  12. Linda, we’ve gotten too close to Chris again.

    And Chris, I did not incorrectly reference your background.
    You attended UCal
    You taught biology (not AP, as I previously thought) for two years at Willow Grove HS for TFA.
    You quit.
    You went into grad school, where you are now, and you are working on the triad of education, science, and progressive politics.
    That’s your world.
    Your connection to education consists of 18 years as a consumer and 2 years as a teacher.
    For myself, 21 years as a consumer, 22 as a teacher, and 19 as a parent. From what Linda has written, her numbers are similar, if not more as a teacher.

  13. And there is more…

    http://www.facebook.com/smyrniotis —> Smyr’s facebook profile

    He dates Toshiko Shek, a graphic artist at Sway. His sister, Victoria Smyrniotis is an artist. Her website is her first initial and lastname at blogspot.

    I am sure Smyr’s research will be taken very seriously when people dig up his ludicrous comments on this website. Keep up the good work Smyr!

  14. To summarize!

    Phillip keeps his blinders on with a steadfast focus on characters and backgrounds, his go-to defense when he doesn’t have anything particularly insightful to say. Also, I counted 7 inaccuracies, so yes, he can’t even get that right.

    Linda tangoes with straw man #1021 after a successful round of drawing conclusions from previous conclusions.

    And a new wave of crazy arrives with the man known for surely not being owned by billionaires.

    I don’t know if Steve is here to see this after his initial comment about “real dialogue and fair debate”, but I’m sure he’d see the irony, right?

  15. When I told my sons I was enjoying the education blogs, one said, “Be careful. There are a lot of crazies out there.”

    I responded, “Oh, they’re just a bunch of schoolteachers.”

    Well, I haven’t been “uncomfortable” until I read some of the responses to this blog and that’s why I try not to write here too much. It’s too bad because I do enjoy reading it.

  16. Chris, maybe you repeated a grade or took the 5 year plan, thus adding another year.

    Highlight from Klein:

    To similar effect, Pallas claims NYC’s NAEP scores didn’t close the racial and ethnic achievement gaps in the City. That’s only true because the City’s white students showed the same large gains as did its minority students. Surely, we don’t want to close gaps by slowing the progress of white students.

    What can one conclude from this?
    The thing that changed was that NYC taught their kids to be better test takers.
    Sign me up with that doctor!

  17. A great comment on Klein’s fantasy:

    Klein shows that the charters did ostensibly better than the schools that he ran (into the ground).

    And if you look at the NAEP results, black and Hispanic students fell further behind their peers in every city and in every category (4th gr. math and reading, and 8th gr. math and reading) during his administration. Finally, NYC is the ONLY city in the country where non-poor kids now have lower average NAEP scores than in 2003.

    congratulations, Joel Klein, for doing such a lousy job , while wasting so much money and time, and treating so many parents and teachers with such contempt in the process!
    6/24/2011 7:47:02 PM ED

  18. Linda:

    What exactly makes you uncomfortable? Is it being called out for consistently resorting to fallacies to support any point you happen to want to make? Would it make you feel better if you weren’t corrected?


    Not-owned-by-any-creepy-scumbags, but…:

    Why don’t you try responding to the linked thread below and show why you think what I’ve written is ludicrous? Put up or shut up:

    www . eduwonk.com/2011/05/political-maze.html#comment-220915


    Phillip #1:

    I’m lying when I say that you’ve made mistakes with this weird and useless documentation of my background? So you know me better than I do? Do you realize how crazy you sound?


    Phillip #2:

    No, that’s not a direct conclusion you can make. The only way you could directly conclude that would be if your underlying assumption was that test scores were only a measure of test taking ability, and I’ve seen you attempt to reference NAEP scores several times before as a measure of student gains, so…


    Phillip #3:

    Why is it a great comment? Is it because it’s wrong? Or is it because the author is too busy acting smug to realize that he’s wrong, and you can relate?

    Grade 4 Math:

    2009 National Public/White 248 (+5 gain since 2003)
    Large City/White 250 (+7)
    NYC/White 254 (+10)

    National Public/Black 222 (+6)
    Large City/Black 219 (+7)
    NYC/Black 227 (+8)

    National Public/Hispanic 227 (+6)
    Large City/Hispanic 226 (+7)
    NYC/Hispanic 230 (+10)

    National Public/Asian 255 (+9)
    Large City/Asian 253 (+7)
    NYC/Asian 258 (+11)

    2003 National Public/White 243
    Large City/White 243
    NYC/White 244

    National Public/Black 216
    Large City/Black 212
    NYC/Black 219

    National Public/Hispanic 221
    Large City/Hispanic 219
    NYC/Hispanic 220

    National Public/Asian 246
    Large City/Asian 246
    NYC/Asian 247

    Grade 4 Reading:

    2009 National Public/White 229 (+2 gain since 2002)
    Large City/White 233 (+9)
    NYC/White 235 (+9)

    National Public/Black 204 (+6)
    Large City/Black 201 (+9)
    NYC/Black 208 (+11)

    National Public/Hispanic 204 (+5)
    Large City/Hispanic 202 (+5)
    NYC/Hispanic 208 (+7)

    National Public/Asian 234 (+11)
    Large City/Asian 228 (+8)
    NYC/Asian 235 (0)

    2002 National Public/White 227
    Large City/White 224
    NYC/White 226

    National Public/Black 198
    Large City/Black 192
    NYC/Black 197

    National Public/Hispanic 199
    Large City/Hispanic 197
    NYC/Hispanic 201

    National Public/Asian 223
    Large City/Asian 220
    NYC/Asian 235

    Grade 8 Math:

    2009 National Public/White 292 (+5 gain since 2003)
    Large City/White 294 (+9)
    NYC/White 295 (+6)

    National Public/Black 260 (+8)
    Large City/Black 256 (+9)
    NYC/Black 261 (+8)

    National Public/Hispanic 266 (+8)
    Large City/Hispanic 264 (+8)
    NYC/Hispanic 261 (+1)

    National Public/Asian 300 (+11)
    Large City/Asian 299 (+18)
    NYC/Asian 309 (+23)

    2003 National Public/White 287
    Large City/White 285
    NYC/White 289

    National Public/Black 252
    Large City/Black 247
    NYC/Black 253

    National Public/Hispanic 258
    Large City/Hispanic 256
    NYC/Hispanic 260

    National Public/Asian 289
    Large City/Asian 281
    NYC/Asian 286

    Grade 8 Reading:

    2009 National Public/White 271 (+1 gain since 2003)
    Large City/White 272 (+4)
    NYC/White 271 (+1)

    National Public/Black 245 (+1)
    Large City/Black 243 (+2)
    NYC/Black 246 (+1)

    National Public/Hispanic 248 (+4)
    Large City/Hispanic 245 (+4)
    NYC/Hispanic 243 (-4)

    National Public/Asian 273 (+5)
    Large City/Asian 268 (+8)
    NYC/Asian 270 (+6)

    2003 National Public/White 270
    Large City/White 268
    NYC/White 270

    National Public/Black 244
    Large City/Black 241
    NYC/Black 245

    National Public/Hispanic 244
    Large City/Hispanic 241
    NYC/Hispanic 247

    National Public/Asian 268
    Large City/Asian 260
    NYC/Asian 264

  19. I am uncomfortable with the intense and heated persistence of some comments as well as the expressions of anger and hostiltiy. The name-calling doesn’t help either.

  20. Linda:

    Intense and heated persistence by itself, or do you mean when intended for a certain purpose? I think you have an intense and heated persistence for bad argumentation, as I’ve explained above. It’s gone on for more than a year. Efforts to correct you have never stopped it from happening.

    Expressions of anger and hostility? Does that include how you will try to remain “tolerant” of me, whatever that means? You often post material that ought to elicit anger from readers, and others have responded before saying just as much. Here in this thread, no one is being hostile with you, and that anger is channeled into an attempt at dialogue. If you had said sarcasm was making you uncomfortable, then that’s a different story….

    Name-calling? How often does that actually happen here, and when’s the last time any of it was addressed to you? On the other blogs you frequent, the comment threads there are packed with jabs and attacks at reform in general and often reformers specifically. You continue to post in those other places without suggesting you’re uncomfortable with it. This is also a humorous thing to be upset about because you yourself have made libelous claims about other people. Ask if you want the links in support of my claim.

    Finally, could this perhaps all just be an excuse to ignore the criticism of your arguments noted in this thread? This sounds like a similar exit strategy to how you left the last thread, claiming you “resolve not to post on this blog”, but then you did a day later in a new thread.

  21. Phillip #1:

    I’m lying when I say that you’ve made mistakes with this weird and useless documentation of my background? So you know me better than I do? Do you realize how crazy you sound?

    You said you counted 7 inaccuracies.
    Yet you don’t name them.

    What I know of you Chris is from here, your blog, and your college paper.
    I will admit I don’t know the name of your cat, but hopefully he doesn’t wake you up at 4:00am to give his special cat food.
    My did, and when I failed to fool him, he clawed the hell of me and ran away.

  22. Phillip:

    I don’t need to provide evidence for why you are wrong about my background as it is entirely irrelevant. The only one that wants to repeatedly discuss who I am is you. It’s borderline obsessive.

    Now, more importantly, why are you ignoring my responses to the last several of your illogical advances? Lots for you to chew on above.

  23. “you are wrong about my background as it is entirely irrelevant.”
    Typical Chris.
    Calls names then runs.
    You began this verbal assault by attacking Linda.
    I responded by pointing out the background of your world.
    You took offense at the accuracy of it and the smug label.

    When it comes to education, I’ll take the view and experience of someone with several decades than that of someone who taught 2 years and quit and now stares at his navel pondering ” triad of education, science, and progressive politics.”

  24. Phillip:

    You’re unbelievable.

    Verbal assault?? I didn’t attack Linda. Look above. She made a joking reference about how she likes to use made-up evidence, and I jokingly told her to send postcards, although I stand by my comments 100% about her poor logic.

    None of it was about her background. That was all you, making a pained effort to showcase how little you know about someone and yet how hard you try to make it relevant to all cases.

    I take offense to how completely sleazy you can get when you try to attack someone’s character, not to the accuracy of your comments. They weren’t accurate. They were inaccurate. Believe me, or don’t, but I’m just not interested in humoring your obsession by correcting you about my background.

    What I also take offense to is how many dropped advances you’ve made in just this thread alone. As it stands, you were wrong about and failed to reply to…

    1) Why your “sour” comment made no sense
    2) Why my response doesn’t imply I care about what bothers you
    3) How this thread was never about Linda’s background
    4) How NYC NAEP scores are going up and what it implies
    5) Your referenced “great comment” lying about NYC NAEP scores

    Instead of responding to any of it, you end here with an appeal to authority. Insightful!

    Sometimes I secretly wish that you’re really just Andy in disguise pretending to be a satirical archetype of the misinformed, reactionary edu-commenter.

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