Friday, May 18, 2007

375 NATIONALLY KNOWN AUTHOR DISCUSSES REALISTIC CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 14, 2007
EDITORIAL CONTACT: Lisa L. Rollins, 615-898-2919 or lrollins@mtsu.edu

NATIONALLY KNOWN AUTHOR DISCUSSES REALISTIC CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES AT JUNE 2 CONFERENCE FOR TEACHERS
Guest Alfie Kohn “Sometimes Controversial and Often Irreverent,” Jones Says

(MURFREESBORO, Tenn.)—Some 400 educators are expected to visit the MTSU campus June 2 when nationally known author-speaker Alfie Kohn presents a teachers-only workshop as part of the inaugural Positive Behavior Support Conference.
Dubbed as “perhaps the country’s most outspoken critic of education’s fixation on grades (and) test scores” by one TIME magazine writer, Kohn is the author of 11 titles to date, including Beyond Discipline: From Compliance to Community, a book that addresses the nonacademic realm of school life, including the ways in which at-school discipline tends to not only backfire, but also actively interferes with helping students grow into responsible, compassionate adults.
“The Department of Elementary and Special Education is especially pleased to welcome Alfie Kohn to our campus,” said Dr. Connie A. Jones, department chairwoman.
“Kohn is a sometimes controversial and often irreverent speaker, but he always challenges us to look beyond the fa├žade to the important issues affecting children and the quality of their education today,” she observed. “He is well known for his positions on K-12 assessment, classroom management, parental involvement and homework.”
The author-speaker’s MTSU visit will funded by a Positive Behavior Grant directed by Dr. Zafrullah Khan, assistant professor, elementary and special education, Jones said.
Titled “Beyond Bribes and Threats: Realistic Alternatives to Controlling Students’ Behavior,” Kohn’s presentation will “begin by addressing the problems with trying to manipulate students’ behavior with the use of rewards, including praise, or punishment … (often referred to) as ‘consequences,’ according to event organizers. “Then we will dig deeper, looking at how much is lost by focusing on behavior in the first place, how a demand for short-term compliance … gets in the way of our long-term goals for kids (as well as) how many problems originate with the assumption that the teacher should be in control of the classroom.”
The June 2 workshop in the Learning Resources Center’s Room 221—in addition to Kohn’s four-hour session that begins at 8 a.m.—also will include added education sessions before the event’s 3:30 p.m. conclusion.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for educators in our region to hear this nationally known speaker,” Jones noted.
• Teachers interested in learning more about the event, including registration information, may contact Linda Copciac at 615-898-2680 or via e-mail at lcopiac@mtsu.edu. Seating is limited and registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.
For more information about Kohn, please access his Web site at http://www.alfiekohn.org/index.html.
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**ATTENTION, MEDIA: To secure a jpeg of Alfie Kohn for editorial use, or to request a telephone interview with Kohn or MTSU’s Connie Jones prior to his local June 2 teacher-only presentation, please contact
Lisa L. Rollins in the Office of News and Public Affairs at 615-898-2919 or via e-mail at lrollins@mtsu.edu.

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