Dr. Thomas receives national writing award

November 19, 2013 | Vince Moore

Dr. Paul Thomas
Dr. Paul Thomas
Dr. Paul Thomas

Furman University education professor Paul Thomas has been named the winner of the 2013 George Orwell Award for Distinguished Contribution to Honesty and Clarity in Public Language by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).

Thomas was honored for his blog post, “Evidence? Secretary Duncan, You Can’t Handle the Evidence,” which challenged U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s support of Common Core academic standards.

The Orwell award, established in 1975, recognizes an author, editor or producer who has made outstanding contributions to the honesty and clarity in public language through critical analysis of public discourse. Thomas will receive the award Nov. 24 at the 2013 NCTE Annual Convention in Boston.

Before joining the Furman education faculty in 2002, Thomas taught high school English for 18 years in rural South Carolina. He is a column editor for the English Journal, a NCTE publication, and has written commentaries for the Washington PostThe New York TimesThe GuardianEducation WeekThe State and The Greenville News.

He has published numerous books, including Science Fiction and Speculative FictionIgnoring Poverty in the U.S.: The Corporate Takeover of Public Education, and Becoming and Being a Teacher: Confronting Traditional Norms to Create New Democratic Realities.  He has focused on writing and the teaching of writing throughout his career.

Thomas’ piece on Secretary Duncan is available here.  More of Thomas’ writing is available at his blog.

The National Council of Teachers of English, with 35,000 individual and institutional members worldwide, is dedicated to improving the teaching and learning of English and the language arts at all levels of education.

For more information, contact Furman’s News and Media Relations office at 864-294-3107.