Wednesday, November 9, 2011

IL House adjourns Wednesday without voting on SB512. « Fred Klonsky

IL House adjourns Wednesday without voting on SB512. « Fred Klonsky:

IL House adjourns Wednesday without voting on SB512.

A House committee voted SB512 to the House floor Tuesday by a 5 to 4 vote. But Wednesday came and went with no House vote on the Cross-Fahner pension killer.

The last chance to vote on it is Thursday when the veto session is scheduled to end.

There is talk of another session in two weeks.

But the contacts being made by thousands of teachers via emails and phone calls, and the shadow of pro-union votes in Ohio and Michigan seems to be working.

Don’t rest until a stake is driven into SB512.

American Horror Story: Student Debt, Suicide and Occupations | HyperVocal #ows

American Horror Story: Student Debt, Suicide and Occupations | HyperVocal:

American Horror Story: Student Loan Debt and Suicide Over Wilted Pancakes

POSTED NOVEMBER 8TH 9:51AM BY

Several weeks ago I visited Austin, Texas to report on the #Occupy movement there. The mood was festive, friendly, uplifting. Occupy Wall Street had already turned ugly on several occasions, especially the pepper-spraying incident involving an NYPD white shirt and several young women, but protesters elsewhere had yet to see such instances of violence (the police brutality in Oakland had yet to shock). That’s perhaps one of the reasons why things felt so comfortable and laid back in Austin.

The weekend after I was in Austin, I ventured to Tulsa, Oklahoma. There I met four smart and highly engaged protesters at a local IHOP. We received wilted pancakes and burnt bacon, scorched coffee and sickeningly sweet “juice” very early in the morning. One of the protesters said apologetically, “Sorry that we met here. We have to go across the street to protest Target.”

“You have no reason to apologize, it makes sense to me,” I replied, while

WHERE IS THE OUTRAGE ? « Teachers Fight Back

WHERE IS THE OUTRAGE ? « Teachers Fight Back:

WHERE IS THE OUTRAGE ?

The Personnel and Pension Committee in the Illinois Legislature voted 5-4 to send a “Pension Reform” bill to the full House. Under this bill, state employees could keep their retirement benefit in place but pay more; take smaller benefits but pay no more; or set up a 401(k)style plan.

Let’s see if I understand this situation correctly. For many years the Illinois Legislature violated the Illinois Constitution and failed to make their mandatory contributions to the teacher retirement system. What they did was tantamount to stealing from the teachers and sending a loud and clear message that they were willing to risk the financial future of retired teachers. Now the State is billions in debt and the legislators are blaming the people that they stole from for causing the debt crisis.

Why haven’t teachers and public employees swarmed down to the capitol building and demanded an end to this

Moving the chair, at Penn State and in education | Taking Note

Moving the chair, at Penn State and in education | Taking Note:

Moving the chair, at Penn State and in education



John’s book, The Influence of Teachers, is currently available on Amazon.

The latest example of failed leadership — what I call ‘moving the chair,’ an analogy I’ll explain in one second — comes from Pennsylvania State University. This is a tragic story of sex abuse that apparently went unchecked for years, despite the fact that a fair number of university leaders — including President Graham Spanier and legendary football coach Joe Paterno — knew of the situation.

“Moving the chair” is my analogy for what lousy, ineffective leaders do when faced with a tough decision. Envision a man sitting in his living room watching football on a large flat-screen TV when, suddenly and unexpectedly, water begins dropping on his head. He has a problem: he’s getting wet. He ‘solves’ the problem by moving the chair, and maybe also getting a pot from the kitchen to catch the water drops.

Obviously, the football fan has failed to define the problem, perhaps willfully — because it was a good

Relief from No Child Left Behind too expensive, state officials say - latimes.com

Relief from No Child Left Behind too expensive, state officials say - latimes.com:

Relief from No Child Left Behind too expensive, state officials say

Photo: State Supt. of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson. Credit: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles TimesIt would cost cash-strapped California at least $2 billion to meet the requirements for relief from the federal No Child Left Behind law, state officials reported Wednesday to the California Board of Education.

Although no decision was made, the clear implication was that California should spurn an opportunity to seek a waiver from federal rules that sanction schools for low test scores. The No Child Left Behind rules are widely unpopular here and elsewhere in the country.

“It seems like this is very costly. The deadline very tight if not impossible,” said state Supt. of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, summarizing feedback he said he received from educators around the

Bloomberg disputes Tisch’s assessment of struggling schools | GothamSchools

Bloomberg disputes Tisch’s assessment of struggling schools | GothamSchools:

Bloomberg disputes Tisch’s assessment of struggling schools

On the same day that she spent time denying weeks-old rumors about being the future mayor, Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch was rebuked by the current one.

Speaking with reporters in the Bronx today, Mayor Michael Bloomberg took aim at Tisch’s characterization that the Department of Education had “warehoused thousands of kids” in failing schools. Tisch made the comments to the editorial board of the New York Daily News after visiting Brooklyn’s Automotive High School, which started undergoing federally funded “restart” this year.

“She’s totally wrong on the facts,” Bloomberg said. “I don’t know where she got that from. … She’s obviously been misinformed.”

But Tisch had backed up her statement not with hard facts but with anecdotal evidence about what she saw


Remainders: Ohioans vote to keep bargaining rights for teachers

  • The State Education Department is seeking feedback on its plan to cut special ed diplomas. (NYSUT)
  • Harbor School students Kaheen Francis and Christopher DeJesus dance on the subway. (GS YouTube)
  • Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is going to start giving performance bonuses to principals. (Catalyst)
  • Chicago’s schools chief got his first job, in NYC, by making salt disappear. (Charting My Own Course)

One Test, One Story…Is This All About The Children ? « City School Stories

One Test, One Story…Is This All About The Children ? « City School Stories:

One Test, One Story

Teacher Stories

Submitted by Joy of Teaching, on November 10, 2011

As a reading specialist, one of my duties is to identify students who are in need of reading intervention during the school year. In the primary grades (K-2) this is done through teacher observation, review of student work, the student’s ability to work independently and a DIBELS benchmark assessment. However, in the upper grades (3-8) identification relies solely on the results of ONE standardized test. The test was administered in March of the prior school year.

If a child scores below the 50th percentile, the child is determined to be eligible for intervention. The students who score in the bottom half are then ranked from lowest score to highest score. Those with the lowest scores are chosen to receive services by a reading specialist, math interventionist or attend an extended day program.

What I have found in reading, and important to note, is that the primary grade students who have had a thorough

OPD, ACLU Disagree About Releasing Documents from Occupy Oakland Raid and Protest - The Bay Citizen #ows

OPD, ACLU Disagree About Releasing Documents from Occupy Oakland Raid and Protest - The Bay Citizen:

OPD, ACLU Disagree About Releasing Documents from Occupy Oakland Raid and Protest

OPD says documents pertain to an open investigation

  • TEXT SIZE
  • A
  • A
  • A
By on November 9, 2011 - 4:24 p.m. PST
Shoshana Walter
Occupy Oakland on Tuesday, October 25, after a early morning raid, which was led by the Oakland Police Department.

The Oakland Police Department may have an ongoing legal battle with the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California regarding public documents from its raid of the Occupy Oakland encampment and its response to protests that evening.

The day after the raid, the ACLU and the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild submitted a public records request to the OPD, asking for documents relating to the use of force by police during the October 25 raid of the Occupy Oakland encampment at Frank Ogawa Plaza, as well as during the downtown demonstration that night.

On November 4, OPD’s Chief of Staff, Chris Bolton, denied the ACLU’s request to access to 12 of 16 public documents.

The department did release information about its citation procedures, as well as the names of the incident commanders for the morning raid and evening demonstration, its mutual aid policy,

Source: The Bay Citizen (http://s.tt/13LCw)

Save Seattle Schools Community Blog: How to Get to the Top of the Charter Lottery

Save Seattle Schools Community Blog: How to Get to the Top of the Charter Lottery:

How to Get to the Top of the Charter Lottery

While doing some research on charter law, I saw this article from the LA Weekly, entitled "Charter Schools: Getting Your Child on the List - How to cut in line and pervert the concept of public education" by Gene Maddaus that I thought worth passing along.

Apparently, at least a couple of tony LA charters had figured out how to exploit a federal guideline to pull in more of the "right" parents AND support their bottom line.

Here's the basis for the problem (and I had never heard of this before so news to

Modern School: Korean Education Model Worsens Unemployment—And Your Point Is?

Modern School: Korean Education Model Worsens Unemployment—And Your Point Is?:

Korean Education Model Worsens Unemployment—And Your Point Is?


Hordes of Job Seeking Undergrads (Flickr, Lee J Haywood)
The South Korean education system is often held up by Ed Deformers as an example of an education system that works. They have high test scores and graduation rates and a whopping

Big Education Ape Todays News / Archive