House Passes Student Success Act with Rep. Young Amendment to Protect Alaska Native Education Programs | Delta News Web

There have been no major legislative measures directed toward primary education since 2001. No Child Left Behind (passed in 2001) was the last “serious” act passed in regards to elementary and secondary education. As many people – students, parents, teachers, administrators, and politicians – have noted, No Child Left Behind is a seriously flawed system. So why has it taken 12 years to fix?

We’re not politicians, so we won’t speculate on the incredible delay that’s seen a whole generation of students pass through the K-12 grades under the No Child Left Behind Act. But we will encourage our readers to check out the recently passed piece of legislation that is (finally!) aimed at changing the way education is approached in America.

The Student Success Act does away with Adequate Yearly Progress and federally mandated interventions, and gives parents more control over their child’s education.

Read the details here:

House Passes Student Success Act with Rep. Young Amendment to Protect Alaska Native Education Programs | Delta News Web.


A “Code” of Conduct

This is the second installment about building codes. Last time I wrote about why codes are necessary and even a good thing. This time I would like to delve into grey areas and allowances for errors. Continue reading

When It Counts

Architectural ModelRecently, there’s been quite a debate in the blogging world over the value of architectural work, and whether what we do “counts.” This time, it spurned from the comment of architect and blogger Bob Borson “if doesn’t count if it doesn’t get built” (Life of An Architect) which was then countered with the quipping angst of Jody Brown (Coffee With an Architect).

Here’s our take:

Take a moment and look at an undeveloped bit of land – an empty lot; a field; the great expanse of dirt, rocks and plants will do – and now mentally construct a building there. Start with the general idea – what is the building? (Is it a house, office, store, hospital?) What does it look like? (What color is it? Brick, stucco, wood? Windows? Doors?) Pretty easy right? Now move inside. Plan out each room. How much space does each room need? What is the main function of each of these rooms? How will the users move about and utilize the space?

You might think it seems easy enough to envision something that isn’t there, but there’s a reason people hire architects. We are trained to see empty space and imagine all of the possibilities (bet you only came up with one just now). Each detail we add to the design has a purpose, is carefully thought through, and has more technical information backing it than most people realize.

Now, back to the issue at hand. An architect can spend weeks, months, maybe even years perfecting a design that embodies both beauty and function. And then the client decides to scrap the project. And then you’re going to tell the architect that all that work doesn’t matter? That’s like looking at the Mona Lisa, shrugging, and saying “recycle the canvas.” Ouch.

It might not matter to the rest of the world, or even the client, whether the design that we architects carefully coax out of the ether gets built or not. But to us, it matters. The project is still real, and who knows, maybe we can use some of the ideas from the so-called “dead” project on something new in the future. Or, we can just keep the “failed” design as a reminder that nothing is certain, until it’s (literally) set in stone (or steel, wood, brick, cement…)