issue 3: teachers

Teaching is a Profession

  As a child in South Carolina, my nightly ritual was to go into my parents’ room and tell them goodnight. They would usually be reading in bed, the television on low, waiting for the late news on WIS-TV. As I got older this became rather perfunctory—sometimes I’d just peek my head through the doorframe […]

issue 3: teachers

My Life in Standardized Teaching

Morgan asks to meet with me after class to discuss the upcoming paper assignment. We just finished reading a 1960s lesbian pulp novel in “Introduction to LGBT Studies” and the assignment in question is a creative one with 3 choices: either retell a scene from the book in a contemporary context with contemporary dialogue, tell […]

issue 3: teachers

Trust the Experts

Teachers Talk Teaching Now   Between Coasts asked teachers to tell us about their hopes and fears for the future of public education. These are some of the responses we received. Many thanks to all who contributed. Laurie Spooner, principal/middle school teacher, New Sweden, Maine Facing the potential closure of a small, rural school is complicated. […]

issue 3: teachers

The Town Pusher

A Librarian on the Frontlines of a Changing Rural America   Lily is anxious, whining and barking at the slightest noise or movement. She’s waiting for the school bus to arrive. The elegant doberman stares longingly out a big glass window at the street. The front door of the Hartford Library keeps blowing open and shut, […]

issue 2: neighbors

My Scrappy Neighbors

How to organize in spite of the ‘carnage’   From Donald Trump’s inauguration address, you’d think that the United States was a post-apocalyptic hell-hole, a battle zone of broken homes and communities, the detritus of an economic explosion. And you might start to think that it is all “carnage” and “pain” if you spend time in […]

issue 2: neighbors

Our New Neighbors

Refugees in Columbus, Ohio seek community amidst uncertainty   When a neighbor called to tell him that a suspicious car had been seen driving slowly in front of his house, Sam knew that it was time to leave Baghdad. About two weeks earlier, as he’d been preparing coffee just after opening his office for the day, […]

issue 2: neighbors

Of Votes and Neighbors

My neighbor voted for Trump, and I still like him   Morning sunlight streams into Sven Bondeson’s cheery yellow kitchen, and he sprawls comfortably in his chair, nursing a cup of strong, black coffee. Outside, the temperature has barely risen above zero. Tall snowbanks crowd the house, and his young herding dog perches on one, peering […]

issue 2: neighbors

These Were My Neighbors

A writer looks for hope in her struggling homeland   Fayette County, Pennsylvania, homeowners pay for insurance against “mine subsidence.” That’s the real estate term for what happens when collapsing mine tunnels beneath a property change the level of the earth’s surface. As the ceilings of abandoned underground mining operations gradually cave in, homes built on […]