By: Pat Austin The end of our first semester is upon us and I wanted to take a moment to reflect on my classroom reading project that I began this year and to provide an update since so many of you donated money or sent books to my classroom. Over the summer I read Donalyn … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: My Students Learned to Love to Read
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – The Louisiana governor’s race is beginning to take shape and from where I’m sitting, it looks like a piece of cake for the incumbent, John Bel Edwards. The Advocate has a good run-down of who is in and who is out at this point, and when you look at who … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: The State of the Governor’s Race
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – In Louisiana this week it is both Fall and Christmas: the first weekend of December brought mild temperatures and sunny days as residents emerged from their houses to decorate with lights and position giant inflatable snow globes and penguins on their front lawns. It’s Christmas in the South, y’all. The … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: On Christmas Shopping
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – It is less than a year until Louisiana’s next gubernatorial election and current governor, John Bel Edwards, is getting his ducks in a row. When election day comes in October 2019, Edwards will be able to tell voters that he has added 500,000 new government dependents to the Medicaid rolls, … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: John Bel Edwards is Prepping for Re-Election
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – The fifteenth annual Louisiana Book Festival was held last weekend and your humble correspondent was honored to be a part of it as one of the presenters for my book Cane River Bohemia. You know you have reached the surreal when you are signing books fifteen feet away from Donna … Continue reading Report from the Louisiana Book Festival 2018
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Are you ready to vote Tuesday? Done your research? In Louisiana we have several races of interest, most of them local issues, and I guess at the top of that for me is the Shreveport mayoral race. It’s no secret that Shreveport is in an economic decline and ranks low … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Ready for Election Day?
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – We have some pretty important elections coming up in Louisiana but all anyone is really talking about is LSU v Alabama coming up this weekend. We love our college football down here. It’s been nearly seven years since LSU beat Alabama in a 9-6 defensive struggle between the two powerhouse … Continue reading Report From Louisiana: It’s Game Day, Y’all!
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – There is an incredible amount of buzz about Susan Orlean’s new release, The Library Book. I’m going to have to put this on my reading list. The New York Times posted a nifty piece this past weekend in which twelve authors reminisce about their library love; it includes thoughts from … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: A Love Letter to Libraries
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – It’s been a very surreal week for me, and while I don’t like to write about myself (except when I’m begging for books for my classroom library), how often does one publish a book, anyway? Well, unless you’re Stephen King, and trust me, I’m not. But, I was lucky enough … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Shameless Book Plug
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – So much negative news this morning in the headlines…tension, anxiety, anger, and sadness (that limo crash in New York – awful!). All this anger is one of the reasons I quit full-time political blogging a few years ago: I was mad all the time. Frustrated because I couldn’t really change … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: A Little Good News?
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – It’s a rainy, fall day here in Louisiana and we are one week away from fall break at school, and less than two weeks away from publishing day for my book, so my attention span is all over the map right now. I have only some loose, disconnected thoughts for … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Loose Thoughts on a Rainy Day
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Normally, news of a $300 million surplus at the end of the State’s fiscal year would be good news, but here in Louisiana it is prompting questions and accusations amongst the political talking heads. All summer long Louisiana residents were pummeled with news that our budget was facing a terrible … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: What Fiscal Cliff? There Was a Fiscal Cliff?
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT -- One of the unintended consequences of Common Core (or whatever your state’s iteration of Common Core is) has been an attack on the classroom library and independent reading. In the move to implement a “Tier 1 curriculum,” the first thing to go is anything that does not align with that … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: ELA Teachers told to Remove Novels from Classrooms
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Some random thoughts this week: Book Reviews: I’ve finished reading two books this week: What the Dog Knows by Cat Warren, and Educated by Tara Westover. Both have been books that leave what I call a book-hangover, which is to say that they were both so good that it’s been … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Random Thoughts
By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Last night as I was watching LSU’s trouncing of the Miami Hurricanes on television, I received a text message from a friend which included a screenshot of the new tropical storm in the Gulf, Gordon, with the question “Am I the only one who can feel a faster heartbeat and … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Waiting for Gordon