Archive for the ‘Charter Schools’Category


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(Mensaje se repite en Español) When it really comes down to finally fixing public education once and for all, I seriously doubt that those with the power to effectuate the necessary reforms really want to do so, since they would be the first to go.

Who Should Go, the Public Education Privatizers or the Teachers? By Kathleen Carroll

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) One of the main goals of the public education privatizers has been to make it easier, legally, to fire teachers. Understanding this goal is not difficult. You fire more teachers; you show how bad the public education system is with so many bad teachers. This in turn justifies systemic change or more euphemistically referred to as education reform. And the reform is always the same, more charter schools, more online education, more testing, more replacement of teachers with Teach For America Troops/others. Education reform also always includes more for profit teacher preparation programs- because now not only are the public schools really bad according to the privatizers, but now we don't have enough teachers in the profession, so we need to recruit more and find alternative ways, short cuts, on how teachers get licensed- enter for profit teacher preparation programs $$$$. The public education privatizers have the perfect business plan- create chaos, justify change, make change, make profits. And the more change, the more profits to make.


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(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) Probably one of the clearest examples of managing the news to discredit somebody was seen several months ago in the case of Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) substitute teacher Patricia McAllister. While I found her message of how zionist Jews, who supposedly run the Federal Reserve, as being responsible for our present financial woes to be garden variety antisemitism, I was, nonetheless, fascinated by her other well documented message of how the LAUSD Board was in the pocket of big construction companies and charter developers who gave large sums of money to LAUSD Board members' re-election campaigns. This story definitely deserved being covered by the mainstream media, but instead was buried when Ms. McAllister's antisemitism was given precedence in the "news."

LAUSD and Green Dot Should Talk - Locke High School's Ace Academy Does Not Have to Be a Casualty of Business as Usual

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) Several years ago Green Dot Schools then CEO Steve Barr did a video interview for a documentary on public education that I was working on. In it he said, "We can turn around Locke High School in a year." It occurred to me at the time that if you could make up for all the damage that had been done to these students in South Central (I'm not politically correct, since changing the name hasn't changed the reality for the better in this area), then none of us would have to go to 13 years of K-12 education. It is now years later, where only 14 of the original 500 student class graduated and only 85 of a recent 1400 student class graduated. This does not mean that even those who graduated were college ready with A-G requirements. Rather than think and ask why this is happening and finally address student deficits in a timely manner, before it is too late for most students by the time they get to high school without Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency (CALP) or basic math skills, people still refuse to address the underlying faulty reasoning that tries to fix the damage after the fact and then implicitly accepts race and poverty as the explanation as to why students don't succeed.


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(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) Now, one can only be astounded by the blatant hypocrisy of LAUSD in going after Crescendo Charter Schools for some of the same practices that continue to take place on a regular basis in LAUSD schools, where teachers like myself are given answers to assessments that we are supposed to administer but not score. So why do we have the answers? Hmm... No one at LAUSD in administration or on the Board questions this or the results in their own schools, when students with low elementary levels in English, math, science, and social studies, somehow get passing grades on assessments that they objectively do not have the foundational skills to even understand, let alone do well on. In addition, clearly written on the proctor's copy of these assessments are statements that these assessments are going to be give again, so what the teachers not just at Crescendo, but throughout LAUSD are tacitly encourage to do is help their students cheat.. So why would honorable teachers do this? Could it have anything to do with the not so subtle threat that LAUSD administration holds over their heads with value added assessment (45% margin of error), negative teaching evaluations, and overt threats if these teachers don't knuckle under to the dishonesty that is promulgated by LAUSD administrators who are more concerned with creating the appearance of education then actually doing something that would accomplish it. Ask any teacher how their administrator would respond if they gave an "F" to a student who did no work, was habitually truant, and deserved it.

OPINION: The School Board Election: What LAUSD doesn't want you to know (OPINIÓN: La Escuela de Junta Electoral: ¿Qué LAUSD no quiere que usted sepa)

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) (For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post) What they don't want you to know is that charters started as a way to explore innovative teaching practices, that fewer than one in seven charters produce better results, and while they should be explored, charters should not be promoted as the "be all end all" to the problems facing our schools that the politicians - school board members and the Superintendent - have refused to address for years. What they also don't want you to know is that there's an incestuous relationship between current and former board members, district employees, and many in the charter school industry. We need to follow the money trail. Our incoming superintendent, John Deasy, negotiated an $80,000 salary bump despite recent layoffs, pay cuts, and firings - all done because the district supposedly doesn't have enough cash. The board didn't even bother to consider any other candidates. Deasy has worked for the Gates Foundation, embracing their push for value-added assessments, despite that, at best, value-added has a margin of error of plus or minus 45 points, and even worse, the foundation has been withholding data from researchers.

Meet Professor Joel Shatzky from Brooklyn, New York , who could just as easily be describing LAUSD or any of the other purposefully failed public school districts in between (Conocer el Profesor Joel Shatzky de Brooklyn, Nueva York, que podría fácilment

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(Mensaje se repite en Español) For a national view of public education reform see the end of this blog post Although Professor Joel Shatzky's writing and videos are about New York City public schools, can you see your own purposefully failed public school in the following three videos he has written or in the many articles and Huffington Post blogs he has written? Joel Shatzky:Brooklyn, New York Professor of English Emeritus--SUNY, College at Cortland (1968-2005) Adjunct instructor-Kingsborough CC (CUNY) 2006-- ) Regular contributor to the Huffington Post: 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."