Friday, May 18, 2007

Norm's Rules

May 18, 2007

Sol Stern asked for our agenda in case he was going to stop by the ICE meeting today. He also asked if we use Robert's Rules.

Can you bring a few chocolate bars as we can't afford to serve any food at ICE meetings? Or maybe stop by the UFT and ask Randi to send over a platter.

We don't
use Roberts rules - we use Norm's rules: anarchy. The loudest (and biggest) people get to speak as often as they want. People can throw things but a person must get hit by 3 objects before they have to give up the floor. If a speaker is to the right of Attila the Hun - ie. writes for the NY Post or the Sun - live ammo can be used but nothing heavier duty than a mortar round.

Norm's rules in action at a recent ICE meeting

The ICE agenda for the May 18 meeting:

Explaining Marxist economics to pre-kindergarten kids
The dialectic of the phonics vs. balanced literacy model
Impact of arming the phonics police with Tasers to zap teachers who forget to teach the short a sound.
Teaching birth control using multiplication tables.
How to take a class trip to North Korea and not get caught.
Dirty tricks on Randi: broadcast her del assembly reports with secret speakers stategically spaced throughout 52 Broadway 24/7 till people come running out of the building and throw themselves into moving traffic.
Integrating social justice themes in phys ed:
Relay races based on dodging American bombs
Is broad jumping anti-feminist?

Hope this info is helpful.


  1. I regret I was not there. It certainly sounds more interesting than most meetings I'm compelled to attend. I read Mr. Stern's piece, and found it ironic.

    He need not worry so much. The assumption that Tweed has any interest whatsoever in promoting social justice is absurd on the face of it.

    And while I did not attend the particular session he referred to, it's impossible for me to conceive any scenario under which a group from Tweed makes a meeting interesting. The last time I went to one, reorg mach 1 was underway.

    I asked why the mayor hadn't chosen to focus on good teachers and smaller class sizes.

    "Well, we have to do something," argued the suit.

    "Why can't you do something worthwhile?" I asked.

    For this, he had no response whatsoever. Perhaps he's still pondering it. I doubt it, though.

  2. Sol seems to have discovered red-baiting as a way of extending his career. The NY Post picked up one column, probably because it was a slow day on Page 6. I hope you did not disappoint him, Norm.

  3. Sol never did come to the ICE meeting. And we had the mortar all set up. I went to the NYCORE meeting afterwards and they will be part of a response to the likes of Sol and others attacking the concept of social justice schools and teachers. There is a slippery slope on this sometimes because no matter what your political position, teachers should be careful about the line where their ideas and positions can become an imposition on impressionable young people. On the other hand, a teacher's passion can be very positive in getting students interested in a subject. It is a good ongoing discussion and Sol's redbaiting may spur people to counter the attacks with a rational response that will be useful for teachers doing this kind of work.


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