Thursday, June 9, 2011

OMG2 CODENAME ORWEL:) Department of Education SWAT Team Raids Area Home Seeking Renegade Teacher

The Bennington Vale Evening Transcript: Department of Education SWAT Team Raids Area Home Seeking Renegade Teacher

Department of Education SWAT Team Raids Area Home Seeking Renegade Teacher

Secret Law Enforcement Teams in Every Government Agency, Official Reveals

SAN NARCISO, Calif. -- A S.W.A.T. team, acting under orders from the U.S. Department of Education, raided a California home Tuesday and reportedly roughed up the owner, Thad Kittle, because of a student aid issue involving his estranged wife. One witness said, “They all had guns. They dragged him out in his boxer shorts, threw him to the ground and handcuffed him.” Kittle’s three children were also detained in the terrifying incident. His wife no longer lives at the address, and was not present.

The search warrant noted that authorities were seeking evidence related to Financial Aid Fraud, Conspiracy, Theft of Government Funds, False Statement to Government Agency and Wire Fraud. However, the judge who signed the warrant specifically deleted the line authorizing the search for “contraband or any other item that is immediately apparent to be evidence of a crime,” leading critics to question the use of excessive force...and why the Department of Education has an armed paramilitary.

Strength Lies in Attack, Not Defense
An official who oversees government enforcement services clarified on Thursday that federal agents with the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), not local police or S.W.A.T. units, served the search warrant. Relti Floda, secretary of the Office of Recovery and Weaponized Enforcement Leverage (ORWEL), explained that the OIG is a semi-independent branch of the U.S. Department of Education that executes warrants for criminal offenses such as

Listen to Ravitch, Alter talk past each other | EdNewsColorado

Listen to Ravitch, Alter talk past each other | EdNewsColorado

Listen to Ravitch, Alter talk past each other

It’s billed as a debate, but the 35-minute session featuring Diane Ravitch and Jonathan Alter Wednesday on a local talk show was more two people filibustering than anything resembling a true give-and-take. Host David Sirota didn’t pretend to be a disinterested third party, coming down, as one would expect, firmly on Ravitch’s side. Listen to it here. (Thanks to GothamSchools)

Still, having the two on his program was a coup of sorts. The dust-up between them began when Ravitch wrote an op-ed last week in the New York Times, in which she questioned the “miracle” mythology around certain schools, including Denver’s Bruce Randolph. Alter, a long-time Newsweek correspondent who now writes for Bloomberg News, penned a column accusing Ravitch of attempting to derail current reforms. He called her “the education world’s very own Whittaker Chambers, the famous communist turned strident anti-communist of the

School Tech Connect: Another Fax Won't Kill You...

School Tech Connect: Another Fax Won't Kill You...
School Tech Connect

Another Fax Won't Kill You...

In for a penny, in for a pound...

On good advice, I just faxed the governor regarding SB 79, the bill sponsored by my own state senator that would in a nutshell provide an end-run around democratically elected school boards all around the state. There is something slightly foul about this ed reform movement; they use legislative processes to reduce people's overall access to democracy. It's going to be their way or the highway.

As always, I'm available to help show your local organization how to use some very simple tools to get good response rates on political action. Why send out one message when you can send out 100; it's easy, and it's basically free.

If you're downstate or in the suburbs, you should be concerned about this particular bill. Some of the people behind it are hell bent on chartering away the entire public education system.

Incidentally, I lost the governor's fax number, so I went to one of the state local organizations for it. On their website, they have a suggested message for thanking the governor for signing SB7, the "reform" law for which I would be hard-pressed to describe a single positive outcome. For anyone.

We've lost our way. My neighbor is right; we have to re-think what it means to lobby.

Schooling in the Ownership Society: "Reformer" Klein is a hustler supreme

Schooling in the Ownership Society: "Reformer" Klein is a hustler supreme

"Reformer" Klein is a hustler supreme

He helps land Rupert Murdoch a $27 million no-bid contract from NY schools

The money - part of the state's $700 million in Race to the Top winnings - will go to Wireless Generation, owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp., to develop software to track student test scores, among other things. Wireless Generation helped build a similar system in the city called Achievement Reporting and Innovation Systems, or ARIS, that has been widely criticized in the city. The contract would expand the ARIS system statewide.

In a request sent to the state controller's office in May to sign off on a no-bid process, officials cited the tight timeline for beginning the Race to the Top

Shanker Blog » Great Expectations

Shanker Blog » Great Expectations

Great Expectations

Posted June 9, 2011

A couple of years ago, Eat Pray Love author Elizabeth Gilbert explored the negative side of our unrealistically high expectations for artists and, more generally, for those who rely on their creativity to make a living. In ancient Rome, Gilbert recounts, creativity was associated with a sort of divine spirit that came to human beings from some distant and unknowable source, for distant and unfathomable reasons. The Romans referred to this intangible spirit as a genius. An individual was not a genius, but rather had a genius – a magical entity who was believed to live in the walls of an artist’s studio and who would come out and invisibly assist the artist with his/her work. The lesson Gilbert draws is one of humility (i.e., successes are not entirely ours – don’t be such a narcissist) and emancipatory relief (i.e., failures are not completely our fault either – can’t hurt to try).

What does all this have to do with education and teachers? It seems to me that our expectations for both teachers and artists are sometimes unrealistic and unproductive, if not detrimental. Great teachers are often portrayed as superheroes, unencumbered by anything that might distract them from their teaching crusade – “refusing to surrender to the combined menaces of poverty, bureaucracy, and budgetary shortfalls.” As a recent article in The Atlanticexplained, Teach for America now asks applicants to talk about how they have overcome the challenges in their lives and uses these answers to rate their perseverance.

Yet the meaning of “Great Teacher” rarely gets analyzed. Instead, our definition of greatness – or even competence – remains a convenient black box, leading some to suggest that the question of what makes a teacher great is less important than separating the wheat from the chaff. In turn, this reveals a simplistic and, in my view, negative

The results are in……but don’t celebrate just yet! « EducationCEO's Blog

The results are in……but don’t celebrate just yet! « EducationCEO's Blog

The results are in……but don’t celebrate just yet! Leave a comment

Earlier this week, the Georgia Department of Education released the overall results for the Georgia High School Graduation Tests (GHSGT), which will become a thing of the past for the Freshman class of 2011 (READ: Performance for the state and districts as a whole, not the results for AYP subgroups. Those results will not be made public until mid to late-July) . I won’t go into my P.O.V. on phasing out the test here, instead I will save that for another day when I find myself putting off struggling to write. Today we got a glimpse of the overall performance on the state’s Criterion Referenced Competency Test (CRCT), which is administered to kids in grades 3-8; those in grades 3, 5, and 8 are required to pass the Math and Reading tests in order to be promoted to the next grade. As I read the article in the AJC and Maureen Downey’s AJCGetSchooled blog, I didn’t even bother to dissect the scores or pop a bottle of champagne in celebration of the what they want you to think is good news. Instead, I pulled a few snip-its from the article, tweeted them, and added my own .02, which all follow below:

EDUCATIONCEO TheParentsEducator
Math scores highlight CRCT gains |… #Georgia #CRCT #testing #education
EDUCATIONCEO TheParentsEducator
So they are spinning the test score results to say new Math curriculum might be working.How do we explain scores for h.s. students? #Georgia
EDUCATIONCEO TheParentsEducator
And why in the heck are schools ‘preparing’ for the test at beginning of year? Let teachers teach & test prep is not necessary.
EDUCATIONCEO TheParentsEducator
One student said a few questions were poorly written or confusing. (This comment from a student is especially troubling.)
EDUCATIONCEO TheParentsEducator
I won’t celebrate CRCT results until I see the AYP subgroup breakdown…which takes them FOREVER to release… #Georgia
And that last tweet is the motivation for writing this post: We cannot and should not measure everything our kids are supposed to learn based on one test,

Big Education Ape: 6-9-11 PM OMG they have armed ED Sec Duncan Edition

Big Education Ape: Ed News Now
Big Education Ape: Ed News Now

Published by Coopmike48 – 6 contributors today

'The Acquisition of 16,905 Students' - Prior to my career in academia, I practiced law. I took my first job back in 1988 during a boom in so-called mergers and acquisitions. There were lots or reasons bandied about for why one corporati...

Blog posts on this issue - The White House Office of the Press Secretary For Immediate Release June 09, 2011 WASHINGTON, D.C. – The White House today announced the establishment of the first White House Rural Council. While...


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