Mary Sheehy Moe en Swan Song <p>This will be my last commentary on this program.&nbsp; As I pondered what to say in parting, I landed on what I what I should have said to you at the start:&nbsp; why I think ongoing commentary on the subject of public education is important.</p><p></p> Wed, 15 Jan 2014 20:09:06 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 13699 at The Holiday Gift That Keeps on Giving <p>Of all the tasks involved in being a school board member, certainly the most pleasant is attending holiday concerts. Every year I drop in on school programs throughout Great Falls, and this year, I’ve been focusing on the elementary schools.&nbsp; The talent and sophistication are certainly more evident in the high schools, but in the elementary schools, every child is part of the program.&nbsp;&nbsp; And for a couple of hours, you get to be part of the unique mini-community that develops around the hub of a neighborhood school.&nbsp;</p><p></p> Wed, 18 Dec 2013 18:43:47 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 12612 at Cat-Griz XLV <p>This weekend will mark my 45<sup>th</sup> observance of the Bobcat-Grizzly Game, “the Brawl of the Wild,” as it is now hyped.&nbsp; I’m not too keen on the brawlish aspects of the event, especially what goes on in the stands and in town after the game.&nbsp; Nor do I like the barbs that fly back and forth for weeks beforehand in the name of rivalry humor. &nbsp;&nbsp;Some remarks delivered in jest are received as jabs, and why cultivate animosity with a neighbor?&nbsp; I’m not even particularly a football fan.&nbsp; Yet I’m irresistibly drawn to the Bobcat-Grizzly game.</p> Thu, 21 Nov 2013 17:13:01 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 11435 at Common Core Craziness <p>"You unlock this door with the key of imagination. Beyond it is another dimension - a dimension of sound and fury, a dimension of fright. You're moving into a land of shadow and little substance, of things and ideas fiercely believed, though barely believable. You've crossed over into the Fact-Free Zone."</p><p></p> Wed, 23 Oct 2013 15:42:37 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 10081 at New Beginnings <p>“It’s a new beginning!” I tell my grandson at the schoolhouse door.&nbsp; “Kindergarten!&nbsp; You’ll learn new things and make new friends.&nbsp; It’s going to be <em>great.”</em></p><p></p><p>Joe isn’t buying it.&nbsp; Three older kids whirl by, shrieking, and he shrinks back against the wall.&nbsp; A few feet away, a little girl with French braids does too.&nbsp;</p><p></p> Wed, 25 Sep 2013 15:33:01 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 8800 at Dream Deferred <p>Fifty years ago today, Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech as the March on Washington drew to a close.&nbsp; The nation was wowed.&nbsp;&nbsp; But as good as the speech is, to appreciate the full range of King’s gifts, you must read the letter from Birmingham jail he wrote five months earlier.&nbsp; As an example of persuasive writing, it’s top-drawer.&nbsp;&nbsp; It matches the “I Have a Dream” speech in imagery and musicality, but surpasses it in rhetorical genius.</p><p></p> Wed, 28 Aug 2013 15:51:14 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 7473 at The Section 504 Marvel <p>It’s strange to me that I know so many parents now who have a child with a debilitating illness.&nbsp; It’s strange because throughout my own school years, first grade through twelfth, I was aware of only one classmate who was chronically ill.&nbsp; And over 18 years of teaching high school students, I recall only two with chronic illness.</p><p></p> Wed, 31 Jul 2013 16:47:53 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 6138 at Revolutionary Women <p>In his book, <strong>Lies My Teacher Told Me,</strong> James Loewen levels a scathing criticism at the subject of American history as it was taught back when most of us were in high school.&nbsp; Christopher Columbus was not the first explorer to discover America, and his treatment of the New World’s indigenous people is pretty hard to condone.&nbsp; The Pilgrims were not benefactors to the Indian tribes in Massachusetts; the reverse was the case.&nbsp;&nbsp; Manifest destiny, slavery, war … all were sugar-coated beyond recognition and peopled by a monolithic parade of white male heroes.</p Wed, 03 Jul 2013 18:47:25 +0000 Mary Sheehy Moe 4800 at