Friday, December 13, 2013

Housekeeping Notes--But They Are Really Interesting, I Promise

How Can You Follow This Blog? Let Me Count the Ways

My friend asks me, "How do I know when you've posted?"

Follow, follow, follow, follow, follow
follow, follow, follow, follow

Seriously, there are many ways that you can find out when I've posted.

1. Visit here--a lot! (I usually post 2-4 times/week, but not on a schedule. So you have to check back to find out. Some people think that is a pain. Therefore, there are some easier (painless :)) ways to follow me.

2. Subscribe to the blog by email. I have now made this very easy by setting up a link that shows up at the bottom of every new blog post. [Thanks to Jenna Bacolor of the Ann Arbor Schools Rec & Ed blog--when she did it on her blog I realized there must be a way for me to do it too. And there is!] So just scroll to the bottom of this post, click on the link, and put in your email.

3. Follow me on twitter. My "handle" is @schoolsmuse, and can be found at I now (finally) have the blog set up to auto-post to twitter so every post gets tweeted. Just be warned though, that although I don't use twitter every day, I use it a few times a week, and I re-tweet things that catch my eye. Some of those things are about education, but I also will retweet local events, public health news, environmental news, news from the Middle East, and other things that catch my interest. 

4. Join the Ann Arbor Schools Musings Facebook group, which I started to have some more informal discussions--and allow people to post things that interest them about local education as well. You can find the group here: 

I usually--but not always--put my posts up there. Sometimes I forget, and sometimes it just seems like too much self-promotion.

5. Follow me on an RSS feed. That is a way of looking at a lot of blogs, or web pages, all at once. I used to use Google Reader, but Google closed that down, and I now follow myself--and many other blogs--on There's a link to feedly on the right hand side of the blog. I think it will work, also, to click the links with the orange rainbow on the top right-hand side of my blog. There are other options too: Newsblur, Inoreader, Digg... Readers, feel free to make suggestions about these in the comments.

Commenting Guidelines

1. I love comments. Really, I do. Please comment. On the one hand, I dream of having a comments section that is as robust as Mark Maynard or Dov Bear. On the other hand, I think they have more tolerance for rudeness and snarkiness than I do. (Is that a guy blogger thing?) So having said that, I think my commenting guidelines are very modest, but it's worth mentioning them.

Comments policy: All are welcome to comment, but please be respectful, and assume that everyone wants the best for the schools.

2. Also, I don't mind anonymous comments. Really. I was an anonymous blogger for a while so it would be a little hypocritical to say no to anonymous comments. But the other day, looking at this post (which got 19 comments! maybe a personal record!), my husband said to me, "The same person had all those different opinions?" He was confused. I explained to him that "anonymous" was actually several different anonymi (is that a word?).  If you comment occasionally, even if you log in as anonymous, consider typing a name that you will use consistently every time you comment here. You can put it in the text, as does--for instance--someone who posts as Ypsi Anon. That way, I can (and readers can) separate out multiple opinions.


People are really enthusiastic about this blog, and I really do appreciate that. But I would love some help, in two ways.

1. Want to guest blog about something you know about and are passionate about? I would love informants from local schools and different districts (Ypsilanti, in particular). I would love to have some one write regularly, or occasionally, about their experiences with special education services. I would love to have a teacher or two write about how Common Core and other new legislation is affecting them. Those are just a few ideas. No fortune from this, and not much fame either--but you'll get the thanks of a lot of people in the community who are hungering for more news about local schools and education. [And my thanks to Ypsi Anon, Julie Roth, and Steve Norton who have each stepped up and written things for me over the past year or so.] If you are at all interested, send me an email to rlk234 [at]

2. Don't want to write, but like doing research? One of my most-visited posts, on the Broad Foundation, was easy for me to write because Sharon Simonton had done most of the research for me. I have lots of ideas for things to research that I don't have time to do.

Some of the things I'm interested in:
--local schools history--there is a lot of it, and some of it is very relevant to today!
--Title IX--how are local schools doing with compliance?
--teacher work conditions, union bustings
--effects of testing
--race and class disparities
--language learning
--charter schools--funding, who is going there, work conditions...
--online learning--
--legislative intrigue
and more

If YOU are interested in researching something and have a specific idea, let me know and I'll tell you if I think I might be interested. If you like research but don't have any ideas, I have more than enough for both of us.

See? Housekeeping. Who knew it could be so interesting!

Consider subscribing to Ann Arbor Schools Musings by Email!

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