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At the Times, looking to Chicago for schools commentary

Speaking of Chicago, the New York Times has picked up another Chicago public school teacher to blog this year. Victor Harbison, a high school history and civics teacher, is taking over the space that used to be filled by Will Okun, a Chicago alternative school teacher who’s now writing a book. Harbison’s first post, just before the election, described his enthusiasm for what he termed “participatory civics” programs:

Imagine the difference between having a student read a candidate’s health care proposal and take a quiz on it versus having that student read the proposal, then knock on a voter’s door in a swing state and explain it. After one student did just that, she told me: “I was so nervous. What if I mess it up? It could cost John McCain a vote. A real vote.”

I’m looking forward to reading more from Harbison, but just as Leonie Haimson recently asked on the NYC Public School Parents blog why the Times’ parent blogger is from Los Angeles, I wonder why the city’s paper of record couldn’t find a hometown teacher to highlight.

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