I've been thinking about how disappointed I am in AERA and how I'm not sure I want to continue paying membership for an organization that has been heading down a path that seems irrelevant or worse…. Every issue of Educational Researcher seems more inane and trivial than the previous. I'm actually at a point where I think my undergraduate students think more deeply and critically about educational issues than the cheerleading squad for status quo (authors in ER). And, this is situation is quite dramatic considering the state of thinking among my undergraduate students. Any way, I feel like I'm squandering money by supporting AERA.
On the other hand, I like our SIG and a number of others. Although our in-person discussions of this matter seem to suggest that our SIG isn't the home-base for anyone, I can only say that it is home for me. I'm disillusioned with the science teaching and learning SIG, which could be my home-base, but isn't. My home is the Chaos and Complexity SIG. We have tremendously thoughtful people, who also happen to be nice human beings (a great added benefit). We've grown in the depth and rigor (a very different and more meaningful sense of rigor than AERA's) of our work. And, we're maturing as a field of inquiry, theorizing, and teaching.
Some of us have been talking about expanding our group as a parallel group. We wouldn't give up our association with AERA, which does have advantages, but we could benefit by increased flexibility among other things. I'm sure there are other benefits, which we could discuss here. Personally, I wouldn't mind spending money on supporting this parallel group (especially since I probably only have one more year of AERA dues left in me… I just can't justify the expenditure). We could meet for a day or day and a half before AERA at an alternative site. I do think we need to discuss this issue seriously.
So, please join in exploring this possibility.