Message to Food Critic Frank Bruni- Who Fancies Himself an Education Expert

As a coach and teacher for more than 45 years, I always wonder at the “chutzpah” of those who have not worked closely with children who feel they know what serves their needs better than lifetime educators. The most effective educators– and coaches- start with the personalities and talents of the children in front of them and try to inspire them to achieve to the best they are capable of- they don’t browbeat them to reach an abstract standard set by people far distant from that encounter. This isn”t coddling students, it is teaching them. I challenge you to come to my classroom at Fordham and see, in action, what I am talking about or talk with the hundreds of young people i coached when I was running youth sports programs in Brooklyn in the 80’s and the 90’s. I was and am demanding, but my eye is always, first and foremost, on the young people in front of me and what motivates them and best helps them learn. CCSS takes us away from our best practices for a one size fits paradigm that is the antithesis of creative and humane teaching