Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Oakland teacher speaks at the White House - The Education Report - Katy Murphy's blog on Oakland schools

Oakland teacher speaks at the White House - The Education Report - Katy Murphy's blog on Oakland schools:

Oakland teacher speaks at the White House

By Katy Murphy
Friday, December 9th, 2011 at 5:16 pm in charter schools, teachers.

Laura Kretschmar, a newly National Board-certified teacher who teaches math and science at Lighthouse Community Charter School in East Oakland, spoke at a White House forum about the teaching profession this week with U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Also there is Dan Brown, whose book (“The Great Expectations School”) I just finished reading.

Check out the video here. Laura’s the second person in from the left. She starts speaking around 39 minutes.

Here’s a note she wrote to her colleagues about the experience and forwarded to me to post:

Hey everyone!

I still can’t believe I was at the White House yesterday morning on a panel with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, and former colleague and friend who facilitated the panel–Genevieve DeBose, plus the other National Board Certified teachers on the panel and in the room. I spoke mostly to the importance of school design models

Modern School: With Friends Like These—NEA Adopts Kapo Evaluation System For Teachers

Modern School: With Friends Like These—NEA Adopts Kapo Evaluation System For Teachers:

With Friends Like These—NEA Adopts Kapo Evaluation System For Teachers


Your New Evaluator or Your New Job? (Image from Flickr, Senor Codo)
The National Education Association (NEA) has released a plan that would do away with tenure and seniority, according to an article in the Washington TimesBottom of Form. Under the new plan launched by the nation’s largest labor union, performance, not seniority, would become the primary factor determining whether teachers keep their jobs.

The new plan veers dramatically from the union’s traditional stance, which was to defend seniority and tenure. Madaline Fennell, the chair of the NEA’s Commission on Effective

Two dozen L.A. schools to lose federal funding - latimes.com

Two dozen L.A. schools to lose federal funding - latimes.com:

Two dozen L.A. schools to lose federal funding

In the face of declining federal funds, Los Angeles school officials stripped about two dozen campuses of aid that has been used to improve the academic achievement of low-income students.

The move, approved at Tuesday’s Board of Education meeting, was angrily opposed by school board member Tamar Galatzan. She represents the west San Fernando Valley, where eight schools are projected to lose the funding.

The students losing services are “just as deserving as students at other schools,” Galatzan said. Some schools facing sharp reductions are blocks from similar schools that will retain the extra aid. Galatzan also complained


L.A. Unified stops charters from letting 'volunteers' get admission preference

The Los Angeles Board of Education on Tuesday passed a resolution that would ban charter schools from offering admission to families in exchange for volunteer work or other services. The admission preference had been offered by two charter schools overseen by the Los Angeles Unified School District.

One, Larchmont Charter School, ended the practice recently. The other, Los Feliz Charter School for the Arts, was headed toward dropping the preference when the school board acted.

Critics have called such preferences inappropriate, noting that the law provides for a lottery when there are more applicants than spaces at a charter school. They said skirting the lottery could lead to abuses, such as families getting into schools because of connections or because they promised substantial donations or other valuable



Jersey Jazzman: 2 Legit To Quit

Jersey Jazzman: 2 Legit To Quit:

2 Legit To Quit

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 7 minutes ago
I'm going to bring this up one more time: Apparently, you still can't mention me at B4K: OK, that's their right. But if I'm not "legitimate," why waste space and time on an entire essay debating me point-by-point? I mean, either you're going to engage me or you're not; it seems a little fickle to pick and choose when you want to take my arguments on. Perhaps B4K could let their readers know if the only problem they have with my "legitimacy" is that I write under a pseudonym. If that's the case, would they allow folks to post my work on their Facebook page if I wrote under my giv... more »

Don't Believe Everything You Read

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 42 minutes ago
One of the hallmarks of our modern discourse is that there are those who hold a particular position so dear (usually on the right, but not always) that they not only block out masses of contradictory evidence; they jump on the first bit of "research" that comes along that comports with their world view, no matter how shoddy it may be. Case in point: B4K is jumping for joy that a study "proves" money doesn't matter in our schools: A NEW STUDY: MORE RESOURCES DO NOT MEAN BETTER SCHOOLSGetting Beneath the Veil of Effective Schools *12/12/11* Amid the debate on education reform in New J... more »

Halliburton High

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 1 hour ago
Jersey Public education in New Jersey has been roiled recently by conflicts over charter schools, vouchers and "virtual" schools — but, now, a new type of privatization is on the horizon: allowing public schools to contract with a private company to offer "alternative" education. The idea has been promoted to school superintendents by one of their own, Mount Olive schools chief Larrie Reynolds. He says it could bring extra income both to cash-strapped school districts and to a private, Dubai-based company *for which he works as a consultant.* [...] He [Reynolds] also is president of ... more »

The Biggest Lie In America Today

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 1 day ago
They got together a bunch of elites here in Jersey to whine and complain that "we just don't have the money!" In many ways, the New Jersey residents now know will disappear within five years because of yawning government budget gaps, a panel of top experts said Friday. The bipartisan group of former officials and academics presented a dark view of the state’s future that included widespread government consolidation, worker layoffs, service cuts and tax increases. Experts said that future was nearly certain to come to pass, even with a rosy economic scenario. Wow, sounds dire. Do ... more »

America's Best Judge

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 2 days ago
The honorable Judge Sheila Rappaport from the great state of Colorado: In declaring Colorado's school finance system "significantly underfunded," Denver District Judge Sheila Rappaport *rejected virtually every argument presented by the state's star witnesses* in a five-week trial this year over school funding levels. Rappaport's ruling, issued Friday, blasted the state's level of school funding as "unconscionable" and not meeting the requirement in the Education Clause of the Colorado Constitution of a "thorough and uniform" system of public education. Her ruling handed the proble... more »

Great Moments in Reformy Hyperbole

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 2 days ago
Billionaire-backed and newly-elected NJ Assemblyman Troy Singleton: That is why I am a strong supporter of the proposed Opportunity Scholarship Act (OSA), now under consideration in the state Legislature. The OSA would use corporate tax credits to transfer low-income students from failing schools into public or parochial schools with a track record of success. Our educational foundation must be steeped in the principle that every child, regardless of zip code, should be afforded the tools necessary to succeed. Adhering to this principle however, can be particularly daunting in so... more »

Why Does Anyone Listen to Michelle Rhee?

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 2 days ago
NJ Governor Chris Christie on Michelle Rhee, former Washington DC schools chancellor, 11/11/11: “No one in America has been more clear that we must change our public education system,” said Christie. "Thank you Michelle" Michelle Rhee on Chris Christie, 11/16/11: Michelle Rhee, the former Washington schools chancellor, who sat beside Mr. Christie’s wife during Tuesday’s speech in Trenton, has committed her new organization, StudentsFirst, to providing policy support for Mr. Christie’s education initiatives. “I think it’s incredibly courageous of the governor to take these issues on... more »

The New, "Reasonable" Corporate Reformer

Duke at Jersey Jazzman - 2 days ago
Something is happening here in Jersey that ought to give hope to teachers and parents around the rest of the country: the corporate reform movement is running out of gas. Suddenly, privatizers are running into real grass-roots opposition to charters schools; voucher rallies are exposed as Astroturf operations while opposition to giving taxpayer dollars to religious schools grows. Chris Christie, who seemed hell-bent on gutting tenure only a month ago, has suddenly shifted his focus to sick pay reform (yeah, that'll fix all of the state's fiscal problems, sure...). The corporate refo... more »

Work as Play! Kids Just Want to Have Fun! « Diary of a Public School Teacher!

Work as Play! Kids Just Want to Have Fun! « Diary of a Public School Teacher!:

Work as Play! Kids Just Want to Have Fun!

All Education Matters: PLEASE READ AT ALL EDUCATION MATTERS - ORIGINAL CONTENT BY CRYN JOHANNSEN - American Horror Story: Student Loan Debt and Suicide Over Wilted Pancakes

All Education Matters: PLEASE READ AT ALL EDUCATION MATTERS - ORIGINAL CONTENT BY CRYN JOHANNSEN - American Horror Story: Student Loan Debt and Suicide Over Wilted Pancakes:

PLEASE READ AT ALL EDUCATION MATTERS - ORIGINAL CONTENT BY CRYN JOHANNSEN - American Horror Story: Student Loan Debt and Suicide Over Wilted Pancakes

If you have found this on an aggregated site, they have stolen my work and have republished it without my consent. PLEASE DO NOT READ IT THERE. Despite what people think, this activity HURTS struggling writers when people/bots aggregate original work. It does not HELP.

This piece was originally published over at Hypervocal on November 8th.

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-

Killing Students’ Creativity. And Teachers? « Outside the Cave

Killing Students’ Creativity. And Teachers? « Outside the Cave:

Killing Students’ Creativity. And Teachers?

This was chilling to read:

One of the most consistent findings in educational studies of creativity has been that teachers dislike personality traits associated with creativity.

This comes from from Creativity: Asset or Burden in the Classroom?, a review paper on the research. As much as I wish I could say this doesn’t apply to me, I know that sometimes it does. On my best days, my favorite students are those who subvert my assignments, challenge me and others, and do so with sass and attitude. But on my worst days, I just want those students to shut up so I can move forward with what I have planned. This realization is something that will stick with me for a long time.

The entirety of the paper is worth reading, as is the post on the Marginal Revolution blog that led me to it. This

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