Herman Berliner

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July 8, 2012
The June unemployment rate staying at 8.2% is really not a surprise. The economy is lackluster and the 80,000 jobs added, a number well below what would be necessary to reduce the unemployment rate, is all the economy is capable of generating. Of greater concern and regardless of the November presidential /congressional election results, the economy will not quickly spring to life with a major decline in the unemployment rate.
July 1, 2012
Over the years, I have served on many not-for-profit boards. My first such experience was shortly after I graduated from the CUNY Graduate School. I joined the alumni association and ultimately served a term as President. Most members of this board were recent graduates which I don’t think is unusual. Many of us thoroughly enjoyed our graduate experience and joining the alumni association was both an opportunity to stay in touch and to give back.  Subsequent to that experience I joined a number of other boards, most of which relate to schools and education in general.  I also interact with boards in community, business, government, religious, and educational settings.  For the most part I am very impressed with those individuals who serve on boards. The pro bono work involved is much needed and much appreciated.
June 24, 2012
Two weeks ago we traveled to Colorado for a family wedding.  The wedding was beautiful and I also appreciated the fact that this was an academic love story in every way.  The bride (my niece) who holds a Master’s in Math and the groom who has a Ph.D. in Math fell in love in graduate school and their love of math was an important catalyst.  What a beautiful story and it all added up to a wedding to be followed now by an increasing number of anniversaries.
June 17, 2012
I have already stated on multiple occasions that I am a musicals fan, preferably Broadway but I’m also passionate about college theater, middle and high school theater, not-for-profit theater, and off-Broadway theater. 
June 10, 2012
Serving on a school board has increased my exposure to acronyms. I started my board service already understanding STEM, and have now gained a familiarity with (but not a respect for) the APPR evaluation system. I am also familiar with ELA, especially when it involves an added emphasis on testing, and have now added LOTE to my acronym assortment. 
June 3, 2012
Three years ago, when I first ran for the local school board, I was one of two people running for two seats. The campaign was easy and winning was never in question. My total expenses for that campaign consisted of one first class postage stamp. Three years later, I debated long and hard whether I should run for another term.  What finally convinced me to run for reelection was that we are in a critical time for public education and I felt I could make a positive difference. 
May 20, 2012
My older daughter came home last week, after taking a New York State ELA (English Language Arts) statewide exam. Normally after she takes a test, she mentions whether the test was easy or hard and what, if any, were the areas that give her difficulty. This time it was different. She complained about a reading passage concerning a race between a pineapple (that did not move) and a hare. 
May 13, 2012
On the same day a few weeks ago, I happened to be looking at a Hofstra Alumni newsletter and an article that I had clipped from The New York Times.  To digress for a moment, “clipped” is the right expression since I was reading the actual newspaper, not the online version.  I only read the paper version on weekends.  During the week, I read my paper online and am very efficient in reading only those articles that I identify as of great interest.  On the weekends, and at a more leisurely pace, I look through the entire paper and just by skimming find additional interesting articles to read.  There is clearly a role for both, though it will be interesting to see if the economics of printing a paper, in an online world, is viable.
May 6, 2012
It is clearer and clearer that incorporating active learning and incorporating experiential learning enhances the learning experience. And I believe that any robust assessment program will underscore the importance of more such learning opportunities. It is also clear to me that experiential or active learning shouldn’t take place only in higher education. It should in fact be built into as much of the k-12 learning experience as possible.
April 22, 2012
I’m was not at all surprised when Santa Monica College abandoned their  proposed two-tier fee schedule.  Charging more for more popular courses alienates both students as well as faculty.  And if one three credit course earns as much credit toward graduation as another three credit course, how can there be a differential pricing mechanism?


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