Monday, November 12, 2018

Linda Darling-Hammond vs. Linda-Darling Hammond – How a Once Great Educator Got Lost Among the Corporate Stooges | gadflyonthewallblog

Linda Darling-Hammond vs. Linda-Darling Hammond – How a Once Great Educator Got Lost Among the Corporate Stooges | gadflyonthewallblog

Linda Darling-Hammond vs. Linda-Darling Hammond – How a Once Great Educator Got Lost Among the Corporate Stooges

Linda Darling-Hammond is one of my education heroes.
Perhaps that’s why her recent article in the Washington Post hurts so much.
In it, she and her think tank buddies slam education advocates Diane Ravitch and Carrol Burris for worrying about who governs schools – as if governance had nothing to do with quality education for children.
I’d expect something like that from Bill Gates.
But not Hammond!

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She’s not a know-nothing privatization flunky. She’s not a billionaire who thinks hording a bunch of money makes him an authority on every kind of human endeavor.
She’s a bona fide expert on teacher preparation and equity.
She founded the Center for Opportunity Policy in Education at Stanford University, where she is professor emeritus.
And she was the head of Barrack Obama’s education policy working group in 2008 when he was running for President.
In fact, she was the reasons many educators thought Obama was going to be a breath of fresh air for our schools and students. Everyone thought she was a lock for Education Secretary should Hope and Change win the day. But when he won, he Continue reading: Linda Darling-Hammond vs. Linda-Darling Hammond – How a Once Great Educator Got Lost Among the Corporate Stooges | gadflyonthewallblog



Billionaires, Not Voters, Are Deciding Elections | PopularResistance.Org

Billionaires, Not Voters, Are Deciding Elections | PopularResistance.Org

BILLIONAIRES, NOT VOTERS, ARE DECIDING ELECTIONS


The recent midterm elections offered an opportunity for America’s moneyed elites to spend their ridiculous wealth on a catalog of their favorite causes and candidates. We are locked in a vicious cycle, where billionaires continue to amass wealth due to policies their influence has bought, which in turn enrich them with even more resources with which to shift the American polity in their favor.
Part of the problem is that billionaires’ control over our democracy is largely invisible. As a recent study by The Guardian showed, high-profile wealthy elites like Warren Buffett or Bill Gates are anomalies. To that point, “[M]ost of the wealthiest US billionaires have made substantial financial contributions—amounting to hundreds of thousands of reported dollars annually, in addition to any undisclosed ‘dark money’ contributions—to conservative Republican candidates and officials who favor the very unpopular step of cutting rather than expanding social security benefits,” write the report’s authors. “Yet, over the 10-year period we have studied, 97% of the wealthiest billionaires have said nothing at all about social security policy.”

The midterm races in California saw several examples of the insidious ways in which the billionaire class made its mark on democracy, most notably in the defeat of Proposition 10, the state ordinance that would have expanded local governments’ jurisdiction over rent control. Several years ago, Wall Street hedge fund managers began scooping up rental properties and foreclosed homes in Los Angeles. According to journalist David Dayen, “Hedge funds, private equity firms and the biggest banks have raised massive amounts of capital to buy distressed or foreclosed single-family homes, often in bulk, at bargain prices.” He added, “It’s the next Wall Street gold rush, with all the warning signs of a renewed speculative bubble.”
So it should have come as no surprise that those same firms spent millions to protect their investments from returning lower profits in their fight against Prop 10. Sadly, Californians bought the corporate propaganda hook, line and sinker, and voted it down by a whopping 61.7 percent, saying “no” to rent control. (Incidentally, the opposition to rent control was also bizarrely funded in part by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association.)
Also in California, billionaires bankrolled the campaign of Marshall Tuck, a corporate candidate for school superintendent who strongly supports the privatization of schools. The race between Tuck and his union-backed rival, Tony Thurmond, broke records for the millions of dollars that the candidates raised and the tens of millions that flowed in from outside groups—a shocking Continue reading: Billionaires, Not Voters, Are Deciding Elections | PopularResistance.Org



New Governors Pritzker and Newsom Set Up For Their ReadyNation Gold Rush – Wrench in the Gears

New Governors Pritzker and Newsom Set Up For Their ReadyNation Gold Rush – Wrench in the Gears
New Governors Pritzker and Newsom Set Up For Their ReadyNation Gold Rush


This past week will go down as an auspicious one for social impact investors and a foreboding one for the targets of their interventions: toddlers, job seekers, the unhoused, and those with mental illness. On November 1, 2018 corporate executives, military officers, athletes, and faith leaders converged on New York City to discuss the impending transformation of early childhood into a global investment market. Five days later JB Pritzker became the Democratic governor of Illinois, and former San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom became the Democratic governor of California.
JB Pritzker: Impact Investor As Governor
JB Pritkzer, a billionaire heir to the Hyatt family fortune and backer of the first two early childhood social impact bonds in the US, was not on the recent ReadyNation conference program in New York City as he was in the final push of his campaign to oust Republican Bruce Rauner from the Governorship of Illinois. For over a decade, Pritzker’s Children’s Initiative has financed the work of ReadyNation’s Robert Dugger and University of Chicago Economist James Heckman.
Pritzker money paid for the creation of the Heckman Equation, a tool kit promising a 7-10% annual rate of return to investors in early childhood education, up to 13% if health factors were built into the intervention. The tool kit targets very young children ages 0 to 3, identifying “success” metrics for character training, which were felt to have more potential for “growth” than cognitive achievement or IQ. Heckman and a cadre of researchers have since plowed considerable resources into devising tools, many digital, that supposedly measure social-emotional competencies, particularly Big Five “OCEAN” character traits: Openness, Conscientiousness, Extroversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism.
Pritzker and Heckman made the rounds, promoting outcomes-based pre-k impact investing to community foundations and institutional investors for quite a few years. In October the complicit NEA (National Education Association) spoke positively of Pritzker’s 5-point, two-generation early childhood education plan, which would allocate $95 million for pre-k expansion in the first year alone. The Annie E. Casey Foundation of Baltimore has been advancing this “two-generation” approach, which hinges on the adoption of vastly expanded integrated data systems.
Interoperable data is a priority for impact investors, because they expect to track impact metrics across multiple interventions to claim “credit” for ALL possible outcomes so they can extract as much profit as possible. It is fitting that the Casey Foundation would be a prominent voice advancing data-interoperability given their funding and organizational leadership are tied Continue reading: New Governors Pritzker and Newsom Set Up For Their ReadyNation Gold Rush – Wrench in the Gears
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