Saturday, October 30, 2010

NYC Public School Parents

NYC Public School Parents

NYC Kids PAC endorsement of Tony Avella for State Senate

For Immediate Release: October 29, 2010

Contact: Shino Tanikawa: (917) 770-8438

Mel Meer: (718) 428-3659

Today, NYC Kids PAC endorsed Tony Avella for election as State Senator for District 11, Northeast Queens. NYC Kids PAC was formed by public school parents in 2009 to support candidates who work for the issues that matter to parents and their kids, including smaller classes; less reliance on test prep and standardized testing; more provision of art, music, science and physical education; greater parental input into decision-making at the school, district and citywide levels; and full transparency and accountability to ensure that resources are invested in these priorities.

As Shino Tanikawa of the Parent Commission on School Governance and NYC Kids PAC says, “Throughout his career, Tony Avella has stood up for our kids, so now we are standing up for him. He has been a strong supporter of reducing class size, equipping our schools with the latest technology, and providing our kids with new and uncrowded facilities. He has opposed the insertion of charter schools into public school buildings, which merely makes overcrowding worse. As Councilmember, he voted against Chancellor Joel Klein’s capital plan for school construction because it was inadequate to alleviate the extreme overcrowding in Queens , as well as citywide. He is against 'teaching to the test' and for providing a

He’s not waiting for Superman. He’s waiting to exhale. | The Education Report

He’s not waiting for Superman. He’s waiting to exhale. | The Education Report

He’s not waiting for Superman. He’s waiting to exhale.

By Katy Murphy
Saturday, October 30th, 2010 at 10:36 am in school reform, teachers

Jamal Cooks, a San Francisco State University professor of education and former Oakland teacher, has mixed feelings about “Waiting for Superman.” He says people know what makes a great school; he wants to see less talk and more action.

On Monday, I went to a matinee to watch “Waiting for Superman.” Though I had heard that the movie bashed public schools and promoted charter schools as the answer to the problem, I went into the show with an open mind. When I walked out, I had mixed emotions about the film.

As a former teacher, director of after school programs, coordinator of mentoring programs, and a professor of teacher education, I watched the movie intently and hung on every word. I am a public school educator, a public school product, and a public school advocate. I have spent 20 years working for and with students who have challenging home lives, come from rough neighborhoods, and lack some resources, but who want the same education as the next person.

In fact, my daughter will be starting kindergarten soon, and with the local public school’s API scores under 800, I want public schools to work. However, there are some real facts that must be acknowledged before moving forward for equitable education for all students.

Read the rest of this entry »

Desegregation offers lessons for gay troops debate - Boston.com

Desegregation offers lessons for gay troops debate - Boston.com

Desegregation offers lessons for gay troops debate

In this Oct., 27, 2010 photo, Thomas J. Woods, 78, holds his graduation photo from the Marine Corps in 1951 in his home in Fayetteville, Ga. The stories of Woods and other black veterans who served among the military's first desegregated units during the Korean War offer an iconic history lesson amid the debate over whether gays should be allowed to serve openly in uniform.In this Oct., 27, 2010 photo, Thomas J. Woods, 78, holds his graduation photo from the Marine Corps in 1951 in his home in Fayetteville, Ga. The stories of Woods and other black veterans who served among the military's first desegregated units during the Korean War offer an iconic history lesson amid the debate over whether gays should be allowed to serve openly in uniform. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
By Russ Bynum
AP Military Writer / October 30, 2010
Text size +

SAVANNAH, Ga.—Thomas J. Woods joined the military after graduating from an all-black high school in 1950, when Jim Crow laws forced him to the back of buses and Savannah shop clerks would greet him with a surly, "What you want, boy?"

But in Marine Corps boot camp and then the front lines of the Korean War, the 18-year old saw the rigid color barriers of civilian life smashed in front of him as the military followed a mandate to end segregation of its ranks. That major social change, carried out in wartime, has echoes in today's debate about whether to end a ban on gays serving openly.

On his first day of training, as the only black recruit among 42, Woods was stunned when an instructor ordered his platoon to treat him as an equal. They all wore green, the instructor barked, and they'd all bleed red.

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ASCD Inservice: Fisher & Frey: Feed-Up, Feedback, & Feed-Forward

ASCD Inservice: Fisher & Frey: Feed-Up, Feedback, & Feed-Forward

Saturday coffee. & Old school by Fred Klonsky's blog

Saturday coffee. � Fred Klonsky's blog

Saturday coffee.

We walked out the door to a beautiful Autumn morning and the passenger window of Anne’s Honda was vandalized. There were little pieces of broken glass all over the sidewalk. The only thing messed with was the glove compartment, which had nothing in it to begin with.

We called the insurance company and they sent a guy over to replace it right away.

Then it was on with the morning. Coffee at Peets, some time over the paper, food shopping and a stop to go through what was left of Halloween candy for tomorrow. Slim pickings. So we grabbed a couple of bags of Mike and Ike and Hot Tamales and that will have to do.

Private school boys are bullies and they lie.

Charles Blow has a funny and not-so-funny piece in the NY Times this morning. He refers to a study on youth

Old school.

Steely Dan.

Sacramento Press / THE CHALLENGE OF CRIME

Sacramento Press / THE CHALLENGE OF CRIME

THE CHALLENGE OF CRIME

The recent arrest of 12 young African-American kids for the killing of 15-year-old Aliyah Smith in Sacramento has left many stunned, wondering what is going wrong with our youth and our society.

Working as a cop on the rough streets of Sacramento, I saw the problem of rampant violence up close. Now assigned to work the court system, I see an endless stream of minorities being driven into prisons. I ran for Sacramento City Council earlier this year because our community and our country are slipping. We are moving in the wrong direction, and minority neighborhoods remain in deep trouble.

A 2007 Bureau of Justice report reveals that “While blacks accounted for 13 percent of the U.S. population in 2005, they were victims in 15 percent of all nonfatal violent crimes and nearly half of all homicides.” Moreover, disproportionate numbers of black youths are committing crimes. What many view as a black community problem is, in reality, an American crisis.

I saw a Sacramento just like many other American cities: too much crime, too many imprisoned, too many locked out of mainstream opportunities and too many dropping out of school. For example, a California

4LAKids - some of the news that doesn't fit: RESULTS AT ARENE DUNCAN’S FIRST CHICAGO TURNAROUND SCHOOL RAISE EFFICACY AND LEGAL QUESTIONS smf’s 2�

4LAKids - some of the news that doesn't fit: RESULTS AT ARENE DUNCAN’S FIRST CHICAGO TURNAROUND SCHOOL RAISE EFFICACY AND LEGAL QUESTIONS smf’s 2�

RESULTS AT ARENE DUNCAN’S FIRST CHICAGO TURNAROUND SCHOOL RAISE EFFICACY AND LEGAL QUESTIONS + smf’s 2¢

Liz Dwyer

BY LIZ DWYER - EDUCATION AMBASSADOR FOR THE PEPSI REFRESH PROJECT IN GOOD EDUCATION| HTTP://BIT.LY/CQ1SUI

October 28, 2010 • 4:30 am PDT - Does Secretary of Education Arne Duncan's "turnaround" school-reform model work? News from one of Duncan's first turnaround schools, William T. Sherman Elementary in Chicago, is mixed. Yes, test scores are up, and that's a good thing for the 591-student elementary in the city's violence-plagued Englewood neighborhood. The bad news? It took five years to see results, and the scores still aren't as high as the average Chicago public school.

Duncan ordered a turnaround plan for Sherman back in 2006 when he was still Chicago's superintendent of schools. Sherman was the first campus placed under the jurisdiction of what was at the time a new non-profit turnaround organization, the Academy for Urban School Leadership. [Funding: Gates+Dell Foundations, New School Venture Fund |http://bit.ly/bYaeI8] As an AUSL turnaround school, Sherman gave students renovated facilities, a new curriculum, and an entirely new staff—new principals, new teachers, even new custodians.

A year after the turnaround, the Chicago parent organization Parents United for Responsible Education researched Sherman's data and found, "during its first turnaround year, Sherman had a 20 percent drop in enrollment, a 10 percent drop in the number of low-income children, a 17 percent increase in the mobility rate, a lower parent involvement rate and lower science test scores."

Even though more critics said AUSL's efforts were unproven, Duncan handed

Schools Matter: Indiana SBOE: Pushing the Privatization Fast Track

Schools Matter: Indiana SBOE: Pushing the Privatization Fast Track

Indiana SBOE: Pushing the Privatization Fast Track

From the Journal Gazette:
School takeover outline

In a breathtaking assault on local school control, the GOP-controlled State Board of Education is set to adopt rules the day after Election Day that could hand operation of struggling schools to for-profit companies. Local taxpayers who footed the bill could find their investments handed over to charter operators with none of the accountability required of locally elected school boards.

...

The proposed rules formalize procedures, with a clear emphasis on turning operation of the struggling schools to an “outside manager.” The individual or organization selected by the State Board of Education would have the same authority and exemptions as a charter school. Indiana

'Beat the Jew' game prompts high schools to increase tolerance education | L.A. NOW | Los Angeles Times

'Beat the Jew' game prompts high schools to increase tolerance education | L.A. NOW | Los Angeles Times

'Beat the Jew' game prompts high schools to increase tolerance education

October 30, 2010 | 8:04 am

A high school where some students played the Internet game "Beat the Jew" will receive a new tolerance curriculum, officials said.

The annoucement comes five months after officials a La Quinta High School in Riverside County disciplined students for playing the game.

"Administrators of the La Quinta High School and Desert Sands Unified School District have accepted Jewish Federation of Palm Springs and Desert Area’s offer for Anti-Bias Education, to be delivered by the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) “A World of Difference” Institute," said Bruce Landgarten, chief executive of the federation, in a statement. "We applaud the Unified Districts for their commitment in this issue and appreciate ADL’s partnership in this project."

Other school districts in that region were also to get the training, Landgarten said.

State’s plan to take over failing schools meets with opposition � Local Education � The Herald Bulletin

State’s plan to take over failing schools meets with opposition � Local Education � The Herald Bulletin

State’s plan to take over failing schools meets with opposition

INDIANAPOLIS — State education officials pushing for major reforms, including merit pay for teachers and more charter schools, got a glimpse of their organized opposition Friday at a public hearing on the fate of failing schools.

Representatives from teachers unions and local school boards spoke out against a plan that would allow the Indiana Department of Education to take control of chronically failing schools and turn them over to an outside manager.

Sparking the most heat were provisions that would allow the state to hire a for-profit company to run the school and give the outside manager the power to fire and hire teachers without having to negotiate

Ousted charter school leader sues education officials | The Salt Lake Tribune

Ousted charter school leader sues education officials | The Salt Lake Tribune
Ousted charter school leader sues education officials

Charter school founder Kim Coleman has renewed her legal quarrel with Utah education officials in a multimillion-dollar suit alleging that the State Charter School Board violated state and federal law in ousting her last year as director of West Valley City’s Monticello Academy.

The board acted “maliciously” when it barred Coleman from serving Monticello in any capacity, according to Coleman’s suit, filed Tuesday in Salt Lake City’s 3rd District Court. In formal findings issued in early 2009, the board found that Coleman failed to adequately provide special-education services and withheld pertinent information during a compliance review. Coleman, whose husband, Joel Coleman, hopes to be elected to the State Board of Education next week, alleges those findings have no basis in fact or law.

Named as defendants are Marlies Burns, director of charter schools in th

How Charter Schools Affect School Districts - CBS 12 Action News

How Charter Schools Affect School Districts - CBS 12 Action News

How Charter Schools Affect School Districts


Last Update: 10/29 6:59 pm
Administrators and charter school directors agree that more schools means better options for students, but when students leave district schools in favor of charters they take valuable funds with them. Chico Unified Assistant Superintendent Bob Feaster told Action News "everyone of those students takes with them what we call the base revenue limit. Which is something around $5,000 to $5,500 that each student takes with them to that charter school that had that student stayed in Chico Unified would have stayed with us."

With hundreds of students making the move to charter schools those lost funds add up quickly. Feaster says "a significant part of that impact of charter schools, to the extent that a school takes 100 students, we've got to be nimble enough to reduce the next year by 3 teachers." Feaster added that the district has had to release 114 teachers in the last three years, and with the popularity of charter schools growing the district may have to let go of more next year.

CUSD Charter School Liaison John Bohannon told our crews there are other drawbacks to the current charter school system including stability. "Theres studies


Michelle Rhee's Last Day | NBC Washington

Michelle Rhee's Last Day | NBC Washington

Michelle Rhee's Last Day

D.C. Schools Chancellor Ends Three-Year Tenure

By KATHY BANKS
Updated 8:00 PM EDT, Fri, Oct 29, 2010

Friday marked Michelle Rhee's last official day as chancellor of D.C. public schools.

Rhee served as chancellor for three years. During her tenure, she fired hundreds of teachers and closed schools in an effort to improve education -- moves that triggered both praise and anger among a lot of folks.

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