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Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap

When I was corps member, I generally felt that there was a certain self-righteousness that seemed to pervade TFA, and that at times infected me as well. Unsuccessful schools simply results from teachers who are burnt out and have stopped caring. Unsuccessful teachers simply lack high expectations for their students. The educational system itself has failed because people don’t realize the ‘crisis’ and don’t want to do anything to change it. Such ideas breed self-righteous anger.

It’s a self-assuredness that is at once appealing, false, and destructive, so I was sad to see it epitomized in a recent ‘Pass the Chalk’ blog post on TFA’s website. The central thesis of the piece, ‘After Aurora’ is simple and unoriginal: America may pay attention to mass shootings in upscale neighborhoods like Aurora, but it ignores the plight of gang violence in urban, low-income areas. The author Shuhei Yamamoto, a TFA staffer who lives…

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