Friday, August 16, 2013

LISTEN TO DIANE RAVITCH 8-16-13 Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all

Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all:

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Paul Karrer: Will Technology Widen the Achievement Gaps?
Paul Karrer teaches elementary school in Southern California, where many of his students are English language learners. Karrer worries that the demand for more expensive tools will not be a panacea. Instead, he fears, it will widen achievement gaps and reduce the schools’ budget for art, music, and other essential studies. Two years ago, Karrer wrote an open letter to President Obama that prescien

Is This the Future of Urban Districts?
This teacher describes a series of moves in Philadelphia to save money by hiring uncertified nurses and replacing experienced teachers with TFA. Superintendent Hite is a Broad Academy graduate. She writes: “It is a discouraging day for Philadelphia teachers. The school district has been scrambling/fighting to find $50 million to call back laid off employees in order to open schools. “The mayor f


What Chile Must Do to Improve Education
Chilean researcher Alberto Gonzalez Torrez has read the posts about Chile and thinks the solutions are too timid. Here are his suggestions for what is needed to get free of free-market ideology: “I’ve been following the series of three blog posts about Chile, being a Chilean ed researcher myself. I believe Waissbluth’s contribution to the blog opens a debate of international relevance by showcasi

Best Quote of the Day
In a front page story in the New York Times about the budget crisis in Philadelphia, parent leader Helen Gym said this: “The concept is just jaw-dropping,” said Helen Gym, who has three children in the city’s public schools. “Nobody is talking about what it takes to get a child educated. It’s just about what the lowest number is needed to get the bare minimum. That’s what we’re talking about here
Will School Accountability Crash Like Wall Street?
Jason Stanford, Texas blogger, notes the growing number of scandals associated with “accountability,” and wonders whether school accountability will blow up like Wall Street did in 2008. He writes: “Just like AAA ratings on mortgage-backed securities led to Wall Street’s 2008 disaster, a rash of accountability scandals might be precursors to a similar public school crash. After years of promises

Mysterious Disappearance: Gail Robinson’s Story about Test Prep
Earlier today I posted about a fine article by veteran journalist Gail Robinson, explaining that intense test prep was not enough to help many students. She wrote specifically about the Young Women’s Leadership School in Brooklyn and included a link to a video where the girls were chanting about how test prep would make them succeed. The story is still listed on the insideschools.org website but t


When Test Prep Isn’t Enough
Gail Robinson has written a stunning article about the impact of the test score collapse in New York City. She begins by reminding us that students in New York City have been told for a decade that what matters most for their future and their schools is their test scores. They have done test prep, test prep, test prep, because the scores are so important. Nothing else matters so much to their futu

The Tortoise and the Hare in School Reform
Rachel Levy, education blogger and essayist, reflects on the reformy love of urgent change and disruption. When you read the reformy tracts, there is always appeals to act without delay or even pausing to think. We must act now, they say, the situation is desperate. Well, the situation may indeed be desperate but none of the reformy solutions actually work, and they usually make matters worse. If

Jan Resseger: Is School Closure About “Underutilization” or Punishment?
Jan Resseger here examines the shifting rationales for school closures. Please be sure to read her blog. School closures are a signature issue of the corporate reform movement. When schools close, the students are dispersed, usually to equally low-performing schools. When schools close, communities are shattered. Closing schools is a classic strategy of corporate reform, because it is disruptive,

My Advice to the Next Mayor of New York City
In November, New Yorkers will elect a new mayor. It matters a lot for the future of public education in the city. The mayor has complete control of the city school system. The mayor appoints 8 of 13 members of the city school board, who serve at his pleasure. If one of his appointees dares to disagree with him, the mayor may fire him or her on the spot. Mayor Bloomberg has closed more than 100 sch

Amy Prime: Some Good Ideas for Billionaires and Corporations
Amy Prime teaches second grade in Iowa. She has some excellent ideas for billionaires, millionaires, heads of corporations, and politicians who want to reform schools. If you really want to help, listen to Amy
Diane in the Evening 8-15-13 Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all
Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all: How Albany Hurts ELLsState Commissioner John King, Regents’ Chancellor Merryl Tisch, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Chancellor Dennis Walcott are proud of the Common Core tests that failed 70% of the children of New York State. They say it is “”very good news” that the tests got much harder. They don’t care that the achievement gaps

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