Thursday, August 22, 2013

Activists call for CPS boycott Wednesday - Chicago Sun-Times

Activists call for CPS boycott Wednesday - Chicago Sun-Times:

Activists call for CPS boycott Wednesday

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At City Hall Thursday Jitu Brown (left) Kenwood OaklCommunity OrganizatiParrish Brown senior Dyett High School  group's youth leader call
At City Hall on Thursday, Jitu Brown (left), of the Kenwood Oakland Community Organization, and Parrish Brown, a senior at Dyett High School and the group's youth leader, call for a boycott of Chicago Public Schools on Aug. 28, the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. | Lauren FitzPatrick~Sun-Times
Updated: August 22, 2013 10:14PM
 

Community activists are calling for a boycott of Chicago Public Schools next Wednesday.
About 50 activists at City Hall on Thursday urged parents to keep kids home from school to show CPS that education is a human right and to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.
The boycott is part of a national effort of community groups in 25 cities to protest school closings and budget cuts.
Dyett High School senior Parrish Brown, whose school is phasing out a grade at a time, said he’ll boycott “CPS and the appointed rubber-stamp school board” to show his support of an elected school board.
“We will have a citywide expression of rage next Wednesday and appoint every person of voting age toward a solution for our suffering — an elected school board in the city of Chicago,” Brown said. “To sabotage Dyett and negatively impact the education of me and my peers is a violation of our human rights. Mayor Rahm 

Education in the Age of Globalization » Blog Archive » China Enters “Testing-free” Zone: The New Ten Commandments of Education Reform

Education in the Age of Globalization » Blog Archive » China Enters “Testing-free” Zone: The New Ten Commandments of Education Reform:

China Enters “Testing-free” Zone: The New Ten Commandments of Education Reform

22 AUGUST 2013 1,462 ONE COMMENT


No standardized tests, no written homework, no tracking. These are some of the new actions China is taking to lessen student academic burden. The Chinese Ministry of Education released Ten Regulations to Lessen Academic Burden for Primary School Students this week for public commentary. The Ten Regulations are introduced as one more significant measure to reform China’s education, in addition to further reduction of academic content, lowering the academic rigor of textbooks, expanding criteria for education quality, and improving teacher capacity.
The regulations included in the published draft are:
  1. Transparent admissions. Admission to a school cannot take into account any achievement certificates or examination results. Schools must admit all students based on their residency without considering any other factors.
  2. Balanced Grouping. Schools must place students into classes and assign teachers randomly. Schools are strictly forbidden to use any excuse to establish “fast-track” and “slow-track” classes.
  3. “Zero-starting point” Teaching. All teaching should assume all first graders students begin at zero proficiency. Schools should not artificially impose higher academic expectations and expedite the pace of teaching.
  4. No Homework. No written homework is allowed in primary schools. Schools can however assign 

The NC Supt. Responds to the Lt. Gov.'s Questions About the Common Core | Truth in American Education

The NC Supt. Responds to the Lt. Gov.'s Questions About the Common Core | Truth in American Education:

The NC Supt. Responds to the Lt. Gov.’s Questions About the Common Core

…or does she? On July 18, I posted a video in a post titled NC Lt. Gov. Forest Expresses Concerns and Questions About the Common Core. In the video the Lt. Gov. of NC posed a lot of questions he was seeking answers to from the state superintendent. He also provided a link to his letter that contained all of his questions. The superintendent has responded to the Lt. Gov. and he provides this video to share the response with the public.

I watched the video and skimmed through the response letter Lt. Gov. Forrest received. Wow! What arrogance. We end up seeing that kind of arrogance all the time when we ask for information and clarification on issues it is just not as big time and evident.
And the real answer to Lt. Gov. Forrest’s questions is:
1) Find your own answer, or
2) Any answer is acceptable, after all it is the Common Core and the process, not accurate answers, is what’s most important.
Here is the response letter.

The Educated Reporter: Follow-Up Friday: Understanding Education Polls, Obama's New Push for College Affordability

The Educated Reporter: Follow-Up Friday: Understanding Education Polls, Obama's New Push for College Affordability:

Follow-Up Friday: Understanding Education Polls, Obama's New Push for College Affordability



This was a crowded week for education polls, with findings from three of them being released in a span of as many days. You can read my advice for reporters in weighing opinion data, and also catch a replay of my interview with Bill Bushaw, executive director of Phi Delta Kappa, which administers the nation's longest-running education poll.

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President Obama is launching a new push to make college more affordable -- and accountable -- with a proposal to tie federal funding to student success data. EWA has a handy roundup of the coverage and analysis over at EdMedia Commons.

And speaking of higher education, early registration is now open for EWA's upcoming seminar Guess Who's Coming to Campus: What Demographic Changes Means for Colleges and Reporters.
We'll at Northeastern University in Boston Sept. 28-29. This is a journalists-only  event, and you can register and apply for a scholarship here.

Have a question, comment or concern for the Educated Reporter? Email EWA 

Mother Crusader: The False Choice of School Choice; Philadelphia Public Schools Crushed By Debt And Charters

Mother Crusader: The False Choice of School Choice; Philadelphia Public Schools Crushed By Debt And Charters:

The False Choice of School Choice; Philadelphia Public Schools Crushed By Debt And Charters

I drove through Philadelphia twice today on my way to pick up my girls from a visit with my aunt in Maryland. (Why yes, that IS a lot of driving for one day...)

And as I drove through Philly the first time, I listened to WHYY's Marty Moss-Coane interview Philadelphia Superintendent William Hite. As I tuned in, I was thrilled to hear public school advocate extraordinaire Helen Gym of Parents United for Public Education. If you want to REALLY understand what's happening in Philadelphia's public schools, read the10 Question interview Helen gave to NBC10 Philadelphia.

As I approached Philly and listened to the entire interview, I was struck by the number of K12 Inc. billboards (the national cyber charter behemoth), lining 95 South.  I took note of no less than 4, so who knows how many there actually were.  The irony of this did not escape me, especially as I listened to this portion of the broadcast. (go to 38:50)




Marty Moss-Coane:  Let me just read back a quote, this is having to do with charters, and we know that charters have a mixed record here.  You said, "Unmanaged, self-directed 

Mike Klonsky's SmallTalk Blog: CTU MEMBERS JOIN MARCH ON D.C.

Mike Klonsky's SmallTalk Blog: CTU MEMBERS JOIN MARCH ON D.C.:

CTU MEMBERS JOIN MARCH ON D.C.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                            CONTACT: Stephanie Gadlin
August 22, 2013                                                                                                 (312) 329-6250
CHICAGO UNION MEMBERS JOIN NATIONAL MARCH ON WASHINGTON TO REALIZE THE DREAM
Teachers, labor leaders to conduct press conference at 4:30 p.m. Friday on South Side


 
CHICAGO—On Friday, August 23rd at 4:30 pm, more than 150 members of Chicago’s largest public service union locals will gather at Letter Carriers Hall, 3850 S. Wabash to get on the bus to Washington DC for the Realize the Dream 50th Anniversary March on Washington. Before boarding, the group will hold a press conference to talk about how they plan to take message about Chicago’s public school crisis to the historic event.
 
Calling themselves the Chicago Labor Freedom Riders, members of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU), National Nurses United (NNU), National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) Branch 11, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Action Now, and the International Socialist Organization (ISO) organized buses bound for Washington, DC this weekend to join sisters and brothers from hundreds of union locals as well as churches and community organizations to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the historic March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
 
Chicago Labor Freedom Riders began organizing in July, immediately following the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the murder of Trayvon Martin. Recognizing that the outpouring of anger and anguish over the verdict would find expressions of solidarity and a new activist orientation in the August 24th march, a small group of rank-and-file union members appealed to leaders in their union locals to support their efforts at bring buses to DC.
 
“Today’s attack on public services—including schools, public hospitals and the postal service—are a special threat to African Americans’ right to full equality, including a decent standard of living. Public service institutions are subject to greater scrutiny against discrimination of all kinds than is found in the private sector. For that reason, African Americans have found employment and achievement in public service to a wider extent than in the corporate world,” said CTU Recording Secretary Michael Brunson.

“So the current wave of austerity, anti-union attacks and hostility to government programs disproportionately targets the African American community. The attack on public sector unions has ominous implications for the Black community. That’s why labor rights and civil rights go hand in hand.”
 
The Realize the Dream 50th Anniversary March on Washington was initiated by Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network. The march is co-sponsored by dozens of national and international unions, church and community organizations. On Saturday, August 24th, participants will hear from the presidents of the American Federation of Teachers (CTU’s parent federation), SEIU the National Organization of Women, SEIU, National Coalition of La Raza and other political and community leaders.
 
The bus will travel overnight to Washington DC. Riders will participate in the Saturday events at the National Mall and take the return trip overnight to Chicago, arriving Sunday morning.
 
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 The Chicago Teachers Union represents 30,000 teachers and educational support personnel working in the Chicago Public Schools, and by extension, the more than 400,000 students and families they serve.  The CTU is an affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers and the Illinois Federation of Teachers and is the third largest teachers local in the United States and the largest local union in Illinois.  For more information please visit CTU’s website at www.ctunet.com.
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Transcript: Obama’s remarks on college affordability plan

Transcript: Obama’s remarks on college affordability plan:

Transcript: Obama’s remarks on college affordability plan

(By Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)
(By Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)
Here are remarks that President Obama made on Thursday when  announcing his new college affordability plan at the State University of New York in Buffalo. This transcript is from the White House.
REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT
ON COLLEGE AFFORDABILITY
State University of New York Buffalo
Buffalo, New York
THE PRESIDENT: Hello, Buffalo! (Applause.) Hello, Bulls! (Applause.) Well, it is good to be back in Buffalo, good to be back in the north. (Applause.)
I want to begin by making sure we all thank Silvana for the wonderful introduction. Give her a big round of applause. (Applause.) Her mom and dad are here somewhere. Where are they? I know they’re pretty proud. There they are right there. Give mom and dad a big round of applause. (Applause.)
A number of other people I want to acknowledge here — first of all, our Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, who’s doing a great job. (Applause.) One of the finest governors in the country, your Governor, Andrew Cuomo, is here. (Applause.) Your outstanding Mayor, Brian Higgins, is here. Give him a big round of applause.
AUDIENCE: Congressman!
THE PRESIDENT: What?
AUDIENCE: The Mayor is Byron Brown!
THE PRESIDENT: Byron Brown. That’s — I’m sorry, Byron. (Applause.) What I meant was — your Congressman, Brian Higgins, is here. (Applause.) Your Mayor, Byron Brown, is here. (Applause.) This is what happens when you get to be 52 years old. (Laughter.) When I was 51 everything was smooth. (Laughter.) But your Congressman and your Mayor are doing outstanding work. We just rode on the bus over from the airport, and they were telling me that Buffalo is on the move. That was the story. (Applause.)
A couple other people I want to acknowledge — SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher, is here, doing a great job. (Applause.) University president Satish Tripathi is here. (Applause.) And we’ve got all the students in the house. Thank all the students for being here. (Applause.)
Now, today is a check-in day at the dorms. So I want to thank all the students for taking a few minutes from setting up your futons and — (laughter) — your mini-fridges just to come out here. I hear that the last sitting President to speak here was Millard Fillmore. (Applause.) And he was actually chancellor of the university at the same time — which sounds fun, but I’ve got enough on my plate. (Laughter.)
This is our first stop on a two-day road trip through New York and Pennsylvania. (Applause.) And after this I head to Syracuse — (applause) — yay, Syracuse — to speak with some high schoolers. Tomorrow I’m going to visit SUNY Binghamton and Lackawanna College in Scranton. But I wanted to start here at University at Buffalo. (Applause.)
And I wanted to do it for a couple reasons. First, I know you’re focused on the future. As I said, talking to the Mayor, he was describing a new medical school — (applause) — and new opportunities for the high-tech jobs of tomorrow. So there’s great work being done at this institution. I also know that everybody here must be fearless because the football team kicks off against Number 2, Ohio State, next weekend. (Applause.) Good luck, guys. (Laughter.) It’s going to be a great experience. (Laughter.) It’s going to be a great experience. It could be an upset. (Applause.)

And third, and most importantly, I know that the young people here are committed to earning your degree, to helping this university to make sure that every one of you “Finishes in Four” — (applause) — makes sure that you’re prepared for whatever comes next. And that’s what I want to talk about here today.
Over the last month, I’ve been visiting towns across the country, talking about — yes, feel free to sit down. Get comfortable. (Laughter.)
AUDIENCE MEMBER: We love you!
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. I love you, too. (Applause.)
Over the last month I’ve been out there talking about what we need to do as a country to make sure that we’ve got a better bargain for the middle class and everybody who’s working hard to get into the middle class -– a national strategy to make sure that everybody who works hard has a chance to succeed in this 21st century economy. (Applause.)
Now, I think all of us here know that for the past four and a half years, we’ve been fighting back from a brutal recession that cost millions of Americans their jobs and 

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