Politico.com reports that representatives of the BATs met with Secretary Duncan.

“BADASS TEACHERS OUT IN FORCE: Several hundred teachers, parents and students sang, danced and demonstrated outside the Education Department on Monday, protesting federal education reform under the Obama administration. The rally was hosted by the Badass Teacher Association. On the list of grievances: The Common Core, high-stakes testing and teacher evaluation reform. “Teachers’ voices have been absent from the shaping of education policy,” BAT founder Mark Naison told Morning Education. “These policies are stifling teacher creativity and driving good teachers out of the classroom.” An Education Department official said the agency worked with BAT to secure permits for their demonstration and federal officials met with group leaders to discuss their concerns.

– Later in the day, six demonstrators met for an hour with a handful of senior Office for Civil Rights staffers. Education Secretary Arne Duncan joined the second half of the group’s conversation. Marla Kilfoyle, a teacher who attended the meeting, said that the discussion was productive. “One of the really great questions [Duncan] asked was what role the federal government should play in all of this,” she said. “We told him that they have to give us control back of our community schools.”

– Matt Wolfe, an adjunct professor at Marshall and Ohio universities, was among a handful of higher education representatives at the rally. Wolfe said the federal government has overemphasized things like graduates’ earnings in evaluating institutions – much to the detriment of students. “If a university graduates someone like Henry David Thoreau, who’s living in a shack somewhere changing the world with his writing, he’s no longer deemed a success today,” Wolfe said.

– Education Department press secretary Dorie Nolt said, “While we may not agree on everything, we welcome the opportunity for dialogue with those who care about America’s students – and especially about how to support teachers during a time of rapid change. Secretary Duncan and his staff have spoken with more than 6,000 educators in the last year alone, and these conversations have had significant impact on policy. We are committed to continuing to listen, even when the conversation is difficult.”

My comment: Secretary Duncan met with only 6,000 teachers in the last year? That is about 110 teachers a week. That’s nothing to boast about. I have met with more than 50,000 teachers in the last year, and I am not Secretary of Education.