Some days I wake up and think what right do I have to fight education policies supported by virtually every elected official and media outlet in the nation and the country's two most powerful people- Barack Obama and Bill Gates. Who am I to take this responsibility on? But when I think of the life I have led, and still lead, as a teacher, a coach, and community activist, and the joy I have derived from trying to inspire people to find their own voice, break restraints imposed by those who have little faith in their abilities, and work together to find solutions to difficult problems , I realize that I cannot let powerful people deny others the freedom that I have been given. While "freedom to learn" is not in the Bill of Rights, it is a central part of the
substance of a democratic society, and replacing it with a single script for teachers and students to follow and compelling obedience through intimidation and bribery is not something I can accede to without protest. So I resist, not just through public advocacy, but by stubbornly continuing to teach in ways which affirms student creativity and enhances student power.