LAUSD- A COMPLETE AND UTTER LACK OF INSTITUTIONAL MEMORY (VIDEO)


Zeno's Paradox.jpg
(Mensaje se repite en Español)

(For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post)


It amazes me just how quickly people forget their own history. Back in 1952 when I first went to Laurel Elementary School in the Fairfax District of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) was a completely different and a measurably better reality than it is today. There were no school police and the structure of LAUSD was not based on accommodating itself to failure and the violence it generates, while attack anybody who dares to question this insane approach to education.

In the LAUSD of that era most teachers were so dedicated and busy just keeping up with their jobs that there was no time to go back to school to get an administrative credential or perfunctory doctorate, so that one could escape from the chaos that drives so many teachers out of the classroom today and into administration or completely out of public education altogether. My mom who taught for the District for many years used to remark that it seemed like the only teachers with enough time to go and get the administrative credential were PE teachers, because they were not buried grading papers in the evening.

But there was something much more important about the positive middle class values that permeated Laurel Elementary, Parthenia Elementary, Northridge Junior High, and Monroe High School, that I went to during my time in LAUSD as a student. While there was some divorce and families challenged by poverty, all children in school ascribed to a higher level of achievement and wanted to do better than their parents. Even those incapable of comporting themselves in a manner conducive to learning wouldn't dare disrupt a class or challenge the authority of a teacher, unless they wanted to keep company with the vice principal. Now the Assistant Principal will help the students attack their teacher, especially if he is at the top of the salary scale.

In my LAUSD, students and teachers could hear themselves think and intellectual endeavor was more important than political correctness or vacuous edspek platitudes that describe a world that never seems to come to fruition. I got another robo call today from Superintendent John Deasy touting student advances in all grades on recent high stakes testing. So why can't the student, read, think or engage in critical analysis? Maybe these test results are as dependable at those that were fixed by NYC Public School Chancellor Joel Klein.

As NYC teacher Brian Jones remarks in the video in yesterday's post, there is something strange about talking about the gains of the civil rights movement in a classroom that is all Black and Latino. Or, if you want to know the most segregated school in a city, just ask where the Martin Luther King Academy is or any school named after any other civil rights leader.

In the flawed de facto segregated LAUSD of my era, students who worked hard could vindicate themselves in achieving an education that would get them into the University of California, where the $80.50 tuition was not an impediment to anybody trying to achieve the LAUSD middle class ideal. And if you came from a poor family, you also got industrial arts skills that could get you a good paying job as a mechanic, electrician, plumber, or any number of trades that would serve as a middle class income generating job or as a means of paying for a higher university education.

If you think about it, were completely segregated schools under legal segregation worse than the post civil right era only de facto segregated schools of today?

What went wrong? Take 8 minutes and watch Jon Stewart of Comedy Central's take on the recent Republican National Convention and see if you have enough of an education to connect the dots between the empty Republican rhetoric and what we are now living in our public schools. And let's not just beat up on the Republicans. Again as eloquent Teacher-Activist Brian Jones points out, if testing regiments, budget cuts, and overcrowded classrooms lead to No Child Left Behind (Bush) or Race to the Top (Obama), then why do the president's children only have 10 and 16 students respectfully. I guess it's like Zeno's Paradox, where all but the power elite's children can only race halfway to the top, and halfway again and again to the top, but they can never reach the top...except in their dreams.






If you or someone you know has been targeted and are in the process of being dismissed and need legal defense, get in touch:

Lenny@perdaily.com



NATIONAL EDUCATION REFORMERS


LA Progressive

Dick Price and Sharon Kyle
http://www.laprogressive.com/
Dick and Sharon dick_and_sharon@yahoo.com
Dick and Sharon are a pair of citizen journalists and information activists who were fed up with mainstream media. Rather than just kvetch about the media, they decided to try to become the media. So, together they founded the LA Progressive. Dick is the editor and Sharon is the publisher and webmaster, handling all technical aspects of the site.

This site was launched in March 2008, with Dick and Sharon doing most of the writing. Today, a host of gifted writers contribute to the LA Progressive's daily offering which typically amounts to about 45 articles a week. Dick and Sharon continue to write for as well as edit and publish the LA Progressive and distribute its daily e-news each morning.

Jo Scott Coe Riverside, California
Jo.Scott-Coe@rcc.edu
www.joscottcoe.com
Excellent Video Interview about Professor Coe
http://vodpod.com/watch/4959969-jo-scott-coe-teacher-at-point-blank

Assistant Professor of English at Riverside Community College and former high school English teacher. She is the author of Teacher at Point Blank and has been a teacher of English and literature in California since 1991. Her writing on intersections of gender, violence, and education has appeared in the Los Angeles Times as well as literary venues including Hotel Amerika, Fourth Genre, River Teeth, Ninth Letter, Memoir(and), Bitter Oleander, and Green Mountains Review. Her essay, "Recovering Teacher," won the NCTE 2009 Donald Murray Prize, and other selections of her work have received a Pushcart Special Mention as well as Notable listings in Best American Essays 2009 and 2010. As an independent researcher, Jo authored and published the most extensive study to-date of Adams v. LAUSD, a nearly 10-year legal case of student-on-teacher sexual harassment, in (Re)Interpretations: The Shapes of Justice in Women's Experience (Cambridge Scholars Press). Jo values the aesthetic, political, and socially transformative powers of literary narrative--especially to dispel unhealthy silences and witness cultural blindspots. She works currently as an assistant professor of English at Riverside Community College in SoCal, and her book, Teacher at Point Blank (Aunt Lute 2010), has been selected as a Great Read for Fall 2010 by Ms. Magazine. Punk rock? Yes. Hockey games? Yes. Coffee? Always black. Find Jo on the web at joscottcoe.com and on Twitter @joscottcoe.

Betsy Combier New York, New York
betsy.combier@gmail.com
Betsy Combier's blog http://www.parentadvocates.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=article&articleID=488
is a jewel that chronicles the corruption in NYC's Dept of Educations (DOE)  . She has accomplished a wonderful piece of journalism, and created one of the rare places where corrupt educational governance is chronicled and revealed

Professor Samuel Culbert Los Angeles, California
<nobull2u@gmail.com>
is a professor at the UCLA Andersen School of Business who also teaches in the Education Department's Principals' Leadership Institute. Check out the following 3 minutes on ABC News
http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/video/conversation-performance-review-11126992

Stuart Goldurs Los Angeles, Califonia
StuartComputers@gmail.com
Don't send LAUSD Librarians to the Inquisition, send the downtown bureaucrats
Tests, What Are They Good For? Absolutely Nothing!
LAUSD students to attend school on contaminated land, again!
Some schools teach only to the tests, so how are the students being prepared for the next grade and for life?
New LAUSD superintendent adds six-figure positions to management team

http://www.examiner.com/public-education-in-los-angeles/lausd-test-scores-up-to-failure-levels-what-are-the-students-learning

Has been a teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District for 30 years. He is greatly aware of the district waste, large bureaucracy, and other major issues of the time. He started his blog with the sole purpose of informing the world about the truths of education in LAUSD. E-mail him at: StuartComputers@gmail.com.

LAUSD has selected a new Superintendent of Schools

Karen Horwitz Chicago, Illinois

wccbook@gmail.com

Former award winning teacher who co-founded NAPTA, National Association for the Prevention of Teacher Abuse, and wrote the book White Chalk Crime: The REAL Reason Schools Fail to expose how teacher harassment and terrorization maintains a system of deeply hidden corruption. Disposing of dedicated teachers forms the core of the White Chalk Criminal's agenda since dedication and white collar crime do not mix. Given that all agree that good teachers are essential to good teaching, a system that cannot tolerate good teachers is worthless. This is what we have in place. With Bernie Madoff-like leaders - he was as much about investing as our school leaders are about educating - anointed with unlimited power, including the ability to fill the airwaves with propaganda, education is no longer about education. It is about money and power for those who play a very corrupt game and with an agenda of privatizing schools so their power will increase. (Privatization may have merits. NAPTA does not take a position on that. But privatizing a system that is rotten to its core - where quality teaching cannot survive, where a cover up of pretense that they do not know this despite so many of us reporting these truths prevails - documents that those advocating privatization cannot be trusted! It shows they want our schools for their own interests, not the children, nor the community.)  NAPTA welcomes parents, teachers, students, citizens or anyone who understands that without a real system of education, we no longer have a democracy. Membership is free. Go to: EndTeacherAbuse.org  or WhiteChalkCrime.com. Become educated about what is going on.

Jerry Mintz Director
Alternative Education Resource Organization (AERO)
417 Roslyn Rd., Roslyn Hts., NY  11577

For those of you who cannot wait for corrupt public education to be turned around, AERO offers an excellent source to get connected with viable alternatives right now.

www.EducationRevolution.org
info@EducationRevolution.org
                                                                                                                         800-769-4171                                                              (domestic)
                                                                                                                         516-621-2195                                                              (international)

Susan Ohanian Charlotte, Vermont
susano@gmavt.net
http://www.susanohanian.org
She is a longtime public school teacher who, after 20 years, became staff writer for a teacher magazine and then went freelance. I've maintained a website of activism for nearly 9 years--ever since the passage of NCLB. People can subscribe to the website and then they get updates about new content. I answer all the mail I get through the website and with the answer, people have my e-mail.  I also try to stir things up on Twitter, though I find this medium frustrating. I have a Facebook page--just so people can find me. I don't initiate anything on it, The website keeps me busy.
http://susanohanian.org/show_atrocities.php?id=9593

Susan Lee Schwartz Suffern, New York

Susan studied literacy education, English literature, and fine arts and holds a BA ('63) and MS ('65) from Brooklyn College, and has the equivalent of two master's degrees, earned in graduate studies of literacy, arts and education. She taught literacy skills and art, for four decades in NYC in elementary and secondary school.  In 1998 she won the New York State English Council (NYSEC) Educator of Excellence Award  for her successful teacher practice, studied by Harvard  and the LRDC at the University of Pittsburgh for the New Standards research. At the end of her research, her unique curriculum was selected by the LRDC to be used in their national staff development seminars for school superintendents. She was among six teachers -- from among the thousands across the nation-- observed during the research project, and her teaching practice met all the  principles of learning. In the nineties, she rose to prominence in national educational circles, while teaching at a new magnet school, East Side Middle School. The reading scores of her seventh grade students were at the top of the city, and on the first ELA, which two thirds of city students failed, her former students (then in the eight grade) were TENTH IN THE STATE.

 She writes often about what she learned about the genuine standards for learning, in an attempt to begin a national conversation about the authentic standards, so that there can be genuine reform. Her experience that ended her fine career in the NYC Public Schools has led her to write about the process that removed the top educators, silencing the voices of the classroom practitioners who would not accept anti-learning policies. Her essay here on Perdaily,  is one that describes this process. Read more as she talks about education, literacy  and learning on her site, from the perspective of the experienced teacher-practitioner of pedagogy. She is the voice of dedicated and talented classroom teachers who know why the schools are failing.

Her website is:

http://www.speakingasateacher.com/Susan_Lee_Schwartz_(Steiner)_/index.html


Joel Shatzky: Brooklyn, New York
Joel.Shatzky@cortland.edu
Professor of English Emeritus--SUNY, College at Cortland (1968-2005)
Adjunct instructor-Kingsborough CC (CUNY) 2006--   )
Regular contributor to the Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/searchS/?q=Joel+Shatzky
Author of "The Thinking Crisis" with Ellen Hill (Authors Choice Press: New York, 2001)
Numerous articles on education in Jewish Currents.
Script-writer for three YouTube satires on educational "reform."
 "The Lessons": www.youtube.com/watch?v=D712J1V2Jsg&feature=player_embedded
"Numbers Lie": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=57BRNLviVTQ
"The Charter Starters": www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnrrw5CV3Gw<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnrrw5CV3Gw>

Here's Joel's latest post about the low percentage of "college ready" high school graduates. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/joel-shatzky/educating-for-democracy-t_2_b_821410.html



Lorna Stremcha Havre, Montana
<lornastremcha@yahoo.com>
http://www.endteacherabuse.org/Stremcha.html
http://twitter.com/lornapstremcha

lornastremcha.com

callmescarlet.blogspot.com
facebook


HER STORY:
"I know first hand the financial, personal, emotional and physical damage that can result when school administrators, the Montana Education Association and the National Education Association put their own interests above the students, teachers and the taxpayers of the State of Montana My files contain mountains of paperwork including depositions, declarations of truth, notarized documents and exhibits resulting from an arduous legal process that finally ended when the Havre (Montana) School District settled two lawsuits - a Federal suit and one filed in State District Court. These documents also include a letter from a union representative stating, " This is nothing more than a witch hunt." Yet the union continued to allow the school administration to harass, bully and bring harm to me.
These two lawsuits resulted from a single incident that, had it been handled differently and under the light of public scrutiny, would not have snowballed into awards of more than $200,000 worth of damages. Funds that eventually came from the taxpayers' pockets. Ironically, as a taxpayer in Hill County, my family and I are helping to pay for the damages awarded to me. This covered the attorneys' fees. The settlement did not include my attorney fees, however the district, insurance and taxpayers paid the defendants attorney bills, which exceeded mine. The settlement was made on March 2, 2006."http://www.facebook.com/pages/Dr-Jim-Taylor/125893225652
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Dr-Jim-Taylor/125893225652
http://twitter.com/search?q=DrJimTaylor

Lois Weiner Jersey City, New Jersey
Professor, Elementary and Secondary Education
New Jersey City University
2039 Kennedy Blvd.
Jersey City, New Jersey 07305
drweinerlo@gmail.com
Blog
http://newpolitics.mayfirst.org/blog/5
Democracy Now
http://www.democracynow.org/2010/9/3/educators_push_back_against_obamas_business
RESEARCH INTERESTS
Impact of urban school characteristics on teachers' classroom practice
How race, class, and gender mediate academic achievement
Teachers' work and the school as a workplace. Effects of changes in global political economy on teaching, teachers, and school
s.


5

09 2012

No Comments

Leave a comment