Monday, July 24, 2017

Ken Mitchell - My view: Charter schools haven't proved successful

My view: Charter schools haven't proved successful:

My view: Charter schools haven’t proved successful

Image result for Ken Mitchell is associate professor of educational leadership at Manhattanville College.
Image result for My view: Charter schools haven’t proved successful


In “Charters make a case to hire better teachers” (July 12) the editors dismiss those who question a proposal to allow uncertified individuals to teach in NY charter schools because some opponents have objected to the state’s use of student testing for purposes of accountability. The editors support the proposal without sufficient evidence or context and fail to examine the motives of those advocating for the deregulation of teacher certification.
Instead of questioning research about the effectiveness of Teach for America (TFA), charter schools or school choice, the editors assail New York’s education system, citing high costs and low scores. While TFA and its adherents have engaged in aggressive self-promotion, student performance, considering the investment and acclaim, has been unremarkable. Research on charter schools has shown that they have also failed to make promised gains, even with motivated families and enhanced investments - corporate and philanthropic. Recent studies of students using vouchers to choose their schools show higher failure rates in comparison to peers in public schools.
The editors decry a low return on investment from New York’s schools yet do not provide context for education My view: Charter schools haven't proved successful:

Anthony Scaramucci, Scaramouche, The Mooch or The Moocher

Anthony Scaramucci, Scaramouche, The Mooch or The Moocher

Anthony Scaramucci
Who Is Anthony Scaramucci? - The Atlantic - https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/07/who-is-anthony-scaramucci/534543/ 

Scaramouche
Why Donald Trump's Newest White House Hire Has Everybody Googling Queen's 'Bohemian Rhapsody' - http://ultimateclassicrock.com/?p=324389 






The Mooch or Just Another Rich Moocher

Read Anthony Scaramucci’s old tweets. You’ll understand why he deleted them. - The Washington Post - https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/07/22/read-anthony-scaramuccis-old-tweets-youll-understand-why-he-deleted-them/

Randi Said: School Vouchers Have a Shameful History | Alternet

School Vouchers Have a Shameful History | Alternet:

School Vouchers Have a Shameful History

The movement to privatize public education was started by white politicians who resisted school integration.

Photo Credit: Social Welfare History Project, Virginia Commonwealth University

At the exact time I was giving a speech last week to 1,400 educators about ensuring that all children have access to a powerful, purposeful public education, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos was addressing the American Legislative Exchange Council—a group of corporate lobbyists and conservative legislators who are working to privatize and defund public education, and cloaking their efforts as school “choice.”
It’s no surprise; no matter the question, for DeVos, the answer is choice. When schools struggle, the “solution” privatization advocates invariably propose is “choice,” with the coda that poor families should have the same educational choices as more affluent families. But that innocuous word belies the record—both the academic results of private school choice and the way it was used historically to continue school segregation after the Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional.
After the Brown v. Board of Education decision, many school districts, especially in the South, resisted integration. White officials in Prince Edward County, Va., closed every public school in the district rather than have white and black children go to school together. They opened taxpayer-funded private schools where only white parents could choose to send their children.
Members of the American Federation of Teachers sent funds and school supplies. And some traveled from New York and Philadelphia to set up schools for black students, in keeping with the AFT’s tradition of fighting racism and injustice, School Vouchers Have a Shameful History | Alternet:

Together, technology and teachers can revamp schools

Together, technology and teachers can revamp schools:

Together, technology and teachers can revamp schools
How the science of learning can get the best out of edtech

IN 1953 B.F. Skinner visited his daughter’s maths class. The Harvard psychologist found every pupil learning the same topic in the same way at the same speed. A few days later he built his first “teaching machine”, which let children tackle questions at their own pace. By the mid-1960s similar gizmos were being flogged by door-to-door salesmen. Within a few years, though, enthusiasm for them had fizzled out.

Since then education technology (edtech) has repeated the cycle of hype and flop, even as computers have reshaped almost every other part of life. One reason is the conservatism of teachers and their unions. But another is that the brain-stretching potential of edtech has remained unproven.

Today, however, Skinner’s heirs are forcing the sceptics to think again (see article). Backed by billionaire techies such as Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates, schools around the world are using new software to “personalise” learning. This could help hundreds of millions of children stuck in dismal classes—but only if edtech boosters can resist the temptation to revive harmful ideas about how children learn. To succeed, edtech must be at the service of teaching, not the other way around.

Pencils down

The conventional model of schooling emerged in Prussia in the 18th century. Alternatives have so far failed to teach as many children as efficiently. Classrooms, hierarchical year-groups, standardised curriculums and fixed timetables are still the norm for most of the world’s nearly 1.5bn schoolchildren.

Too many do not reach their potential. In poor countries only a quarter of Together, technology and teachers can revamp schools:

Data flap could lead CA to drop Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium :: SI&A Cabinet Report

Data flap could lead CA to drop test consortium :: SI&A Cabinet Report :: The Essential Resource for Superintendents and the Cabinet:

Data flap could lead CA to drop test consortium


(Calif.) One of the Legislature’s leaders on education is fed up with the multi-state consortium that provides schools with assessments, and has suggested that California should consider going it alone.
Assemblyman Patrick O’Donnell, D-Long Beach and chair of the education committee in the lower house, said in an interview last week that the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium has failed to give teachers useable feedback from interim exams and doesn’t seem too interested in fixing the problem.
“I think California ought to think about going it alone,” he said. “I don’t think we need to be a member of the consortium. We can develop these tools on our own if they are not going to develop them for us. So, my question becomes, why are we in this consortium?”
O’Donnell is running legislation aimed at getting the state and school districts to provide classroom teachers with better interim data. AB 1035 would clarify that the Legislature expects student scores on interim assessments will be recorded so that teachers can view them by the standard being tested.
Interim testing is considered an extremely valuable component because it gives teachers early insight into what material students are having trouble comprehending. But the current system delivers a single score on a broad block of content that might contain multiple standards.
Teachers are also not able to see actual student responses to specific test questions, which prevents the kind of ‘item analysis’ educators had hoped to conduct using the new platform.
O’Donnell’s bill passed out of the state Senate last week without dissent and returned to the Assembly for concurrence on only minor amendments.
“This way the teacher will be able to tell what standard a student is struggling with,” O’Donnell said. “Right now, with the way the interim assessments are being recorded, you can’t do that.”
The consortium is one of two established in 2010 with a grant from the Obama administration to design tests that were aligned with the Common Core curriculum standards. As many as 45 states at one point utilized the assessments developed by one of the consortiums but, largely because of a shift in political sentiments related to the Common Core itself, only 27 states used the consortium assessment in 2016-17.
California joined the Smarter Balanced group in 2011 when there were a total of 30 states participating. Today there are only 16.
California is by far the largest state still a member of Smarter Balanced, which also includes Michigan, Washington, North Carolina and Oregon.
Officials at Smarter Balanced have said they will make the changes needed to give teachers scores by content standard, but O’Donnell remains skeptical.
“I met with the executive director and we held a hearing on the issue earlier this year,” he said.  “I understand that they will be making improvements, but I’m still concerned that SBAC doesn’t appreciate the importance of the issue.”Data flap could lead CA to drop test consortium :: SI&A Cabinet Report :: The Essential Resource for Superintendents and the Cabinet:

Fearing surveillance, dads with a record avoid kids' schools | Cornell Chronicle

Fearing surveillance, dads with a record avoid kids' schools | Cornell Chronicle:

Fearing surveillance, dads with a record avoid kids' schools

Image result for dads with a record avoid kids' schools

In the past 10 years, a boom in research has documented the many ways in which a parent’s incarceration has negative consequences for their kids. Children whose parents have spent time behind bars have worse social, economic, cognitive, behavior and health outcomes than kids whose parents haven’t.
But researchers know less about why that is.
A Cornell sociologist, who is a former elementary school teacher, recently identified a mechanism that may explain why these kids have worse educational outcomes – and strong, lasting, negative consequences that often span generations.
Dads who have been incarcerated at some point from their child’s birth through age 9 are nearly 50 percent less involved in their child’s education, compared with fathers of the same race and income level who have never been incarcerated, according a study co-written by Anna Haskins, assistant professor of sociology.
But that’s not necessarily because they don’t care about their child’s schooling.
Rather, they may avoid their child’s school because they see it as a “surveilling institution” – an entity, like a bank or a hospital, that has increased security, direct connections to other public agencies and keeps formal records, the research found.
“They may avoid institutions they see as ‘surveilling’ because of distrust or dislike of the criminal justice system and police or shame and stigma – regardless of whether they’ve done anything wrong,” Haskins said. “Schools are unique because most people don’t think of them as surveilling institutions. But with their increases in security guards and metal detectors, they can seem that way to people wanting to avoid any further contact with the criminal justice system.”
Haskins and her co-author, Wade Jacobsen of the University of Maryland, published their studyFearing surveillance, dads with a record avoid kids' schools | Cornell Chronicle:

How Betsy DeVos, the Koch Brothers and Donald Trump Are Selling Our Schools to the Highest Bidder - Truthdig

How Betsy DeVos, the Koch Brothers and Donald Trump Are Selling Our Schools to the Highest Bidder - Truthdig:

How Betsy DeVos, the Koch Brothers and Donald Trump Are Selling Our Schools to the Highest Bidder



Where are Charlie and Dave, Mrs. Koch’s two mischievous boys?While the Koch brothers have stayed out of the national limelight since the White House was acquired by Trump and Company, that doesn’t mean the two right-wing billionaire brats are any less active in trying to supplant American democracy with their little laissez-fairyland plutocracy. In fact, in late June, you could’ve found them in one of their favorite hideaways with about 400 other uber-wealthy rascals, plotting some political hijinks for next year’s elections.


This is the Koch Boys Billionaire Club, which meets annually at some luxury resort to schmooze, strategize, hear a select group of GOP elected officials kiss up to them — then throw money into a big pot to finance the Koch’s planned takeover of America. It costs $100,000 per person just to attend the three-day Koch Fest, but participants are also expected to give generously to the brothers’ goal of dumping $400 million into buying the 2018 elections.

This year, the group gathered in Colorado Springs at the ultra-lux Broadmoor Hotel and resort, owned by the brothers’ billionaire pal and right-wing co-conspirator, Philip Anschutz. Among the recent political triumphs that these elites celebrated in the Broadmoor’s posh ballroom was the defeat this year of the Colorado tax hike to fix the states crumbling roads. After all, who needs adequate roads when you can arrive in private jets? This attitude of the Koch’s privileged cohorts explains why the public is shut out of these candid sessions. A staffer for the Koch confab hailed such no-tax, no-roads policies as a “renaissance of freedom.” For the privileged, that is — freedom to prosper at the expense of everyone else.

This self-absorbed cabal of spoiled plutocratic brats intends to abandon our nation’s core democratic principle of “We’re all in this together.” If they kill that uniting concept, they kill America itself. Their agenda includes killing such working class needs as minimum wage and Social Security and privatizing everything from health care to public education.

For example, Betsy DeVos and her hubby are part of the Koch brother’s coterie. They are lucky enough to have inherited a big chunk of the multibillion-dollar fortune that Daddy DeVos amassed through his shady Amway corporation. But what they’ve done with their Amway inheritance is certainly not the American Way.


The DeVos’s are pushing plutocratic policies that reject our country’s one-for-all, all-for-one egalitarianism. In particular, Betsey DeVos has spent years and millions of dollars spreading the right-wing’s ideological nonsense that public education should be completely privatized. She advocates turning our tax dollars over to for-profit outfits—even to private schools that How Betsy DeVos, the Koch Brothers and Donald Trump Are Selling Our Schools to the Highest Bidder - Truthdig:

PODCAST: How do Americans who fought segregation feel about our nation’s schools now? - The Hechinger Report

PODCAST: How do Americans who fought segregation feel about our nation’s schools now? - The Hechinger Report:

PODCAST: How do Americans who fought segregation feel about our nation’s schools now?

Schools remain largely segregated



In 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court declared school segregation illegal. But in the decades since Brown v. Board of Education, the nation has largely given up on the idea of desegregating public schools. In 2007, another Supreme Court ruling made it illegal for school districts to prioritize racial balance when deciding who gets to enroll in what school. The decision effectively rolled back Brown.
Today, there are many schools where students are surrounded by kids of the same race.
But for a generation of Americans who rode buses out of their neighborhoods to cross racial lines, there were benefits to desegregation. Valda Jones was in middle school when busing started in Charlotte, North Carolina and she was sent to a white school. Jones told APM producers back in 2007 that people who oppose busing ignore the sacrifice her generation made. “It’s like it was all for nothing,” she said. “We were called some names and had some things thrown at us. But we all learned that the bottom line was we were all students, we were all kids, we could be friends.”
This week on the podcast, we revisit our 2007 documentary Imperfect Revolution: Voices from The Desegregation Era. To hear it, listen to the audio player below or, better yet, subscribe to Educate.
 PODCAST: How do Americans who fought segregation feel about our nation’s schools now? - The Hechinger Report:

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