As of 5:00 PM, Sunday, June 3rd, 2012, we have 269 signatures on my petition to the White House to replace Sec. Ed. Arne Duncan with someone like Prof. Diane Ravitch, Prof. Linda Darling-Hammond, Prof. Yong Zhao, or similar. Only 24,731 signatures to go in 24 days! At the rate we are going we will miss the mark by about 24,000 signatures… 😦

I suspect there are many factors keeping the signature count low to include: 1) concern over needing to register at the site, 2) desire for a replacement candidate other than those named (Ravitch, Darling-Hammond, Zhao, similar minded TBD), 3) fear of backlash, especially given #1 above, 4) lack of awareness of the petition by general teacher population, 5) lack of awareness of Duncan’s role in the destructive policies coming from the department of education, and 6) proximity to end of the school year.

I had hoped to exceed 1,000 signatures on the first day, one week ago, however, we barely cracked 100. There are over 5,500 confirmed signatures at the site, so there does seem to be folks opposed to Duncan left to tap.


The “We the People” site at the White House removes petitions that have not achieved the requisite number of signatures after a thirty-day period.  Tomorrow, June 27th, 2012, is the thirtieth day.  As of 10:25 PM PST the petition has received 318 signatures.  This exercise enlightened me to just how difficult it is to rally widespread support for a cause in education where those who may most support the cause are reluctant to register officially at a White House website.  Petitions via organizations such as and seem to gather significantly more signatories as they allow anonymous signings, and give the appearance of confidentiality.

Reflections of a Second-career Math Teacher

It’s official…we now need 25,000 signatures on or before June 27, 2012 to get the White House staff’s attention!

Please sign my petition to the White House to replace Sec. Ed. Arne Duncan with Diane Ravitch.  You will need to create an account to sign the petition.  The petition will not be searchable or visible to the public until it receives 150 signatures.

Please forward this blog post’s link, or the url for the petition, to all citizens who wish to make their voice known to the White House staff monitoring the “We the People” petition.  If we want President Obama to hear, let alone to understand, our grievances, we need to exceed the 25,000 signature count by a significant amount; otherwise, current, and future, students of public education will continue to be subject to what may be well-meant intentions, but are fraught with unintended consequences which do more to…

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About Dave aka Mr. Math Teacher

Independent consultant and junior college adjunct instructor. Former secondary math teacher who taught math intervention, algebra 1, geometry, accelerated algebra 2, precalculus, honors precalculus, AP Calculus AB, and AP Statistics. Prior to teaching, I spent 25 years in high tech in engineering, marketing, sales and business development roles in the satellite communications, GPS, semiconductor, and wireless industries. I am awed by the potential in our nation's youth and I hope to instill in them the passion to improve our world at local, state, national, and global levels.
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