Sunday, August 30, 2015

Two Questions Every Presidential Candidate Needs to Answer about Education | VAMboozled!

Two Questions Every Presidential Candidate Needs to Answer about Education | VAMboozled!:

Two Questions Every Presidential Candidate Needs to Answer about Education





In an article released by Truthout, author Paul Thomas recently released an article titled “Five Questions Every Presidential Candidate Needs to Answer About Education.” You can read all five questions framed by Thomas here, but I want to highlight for you all the two (of the five) questions that most closely relate to the issues with which we deal via this blog.
Here are the two questions about education reform in this particular arena that every candidate should have to answer, and a few of Thomas’s words about why these questions matter.
1. While state and national leaders in education have repeatedly noted the importance of teacher quality – while also misrepresenting that importance [emphasis added] – increasing standards-based teaching, high-stakes testing and value-added methods of teacher evaluation, along with the dismantling unions, have de-professionalized teaching and discouraged young people from entering the field. How will you work to return professionalism and autonomy to teachers?
The teacher quality debate is the latest phase of accountability linked to test scores that started with school and student accountability in the 1980s and ’90s. While everyone can agree that teacher quality is important, the real issues are how we measure that impact and how we separate teacher and even school quality effects from the much larger and more powerful impact of out-of-school factors – that account for about 60% to 86% of measurable student learning.
The misguided focus on teacher quality – linking evaluations significantly to test scores – Two Questions Every Presidential Candidate Needs to Answer about Education | VAMboozled!:

#FightForDyett In Chicago: Dyett Hunger Strike Day 14 – Supporting and Defending - Living in Dialogue

In Chicago: Dyett Hunger Strike Day 14 – Supporting and Defending - Living in Dialogue:

In Chicago: Dyett Hunger Strike Day 14 – Supporting and Defending 





By Michelle Gunderson.
A circle of ten people sit outside Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office demanding a meeting with the mayor. They have not taken solid food for 12 days. The Dyett hunger strikers ask that a decision be made regarding their proposal to keep the only open enrollment high school in the Bronzeville neighborhood of Chicago.
The mayor does not come out.
An aide is sent instead.
As a supporter of the Dyett hunger strikers, as well as a supporter of the concept of public education driven by communities – not contract or charter schools – I sit behind the Dyett hunger strikers on the fifth floor of Chicago’s City Hall and wait.
We might as well be on the opposite site of a moat of a feudal castle. The barrier between Rahm Emanuel and the members of the Bronzeville community is that wide.
Yet, as we support the Dyett hunger strikers, many of us find ourselves defending their actions.
This past week Eric Zorn, a writer for The Chicago Tribune, claimed the hunger strikers were taking the public hostage with their actions that he called a planned suicide. Then Alderman Will Burns stated that he refused to be bullied by the strikers.
Let’s be clear, a hunger strike is a fast, a withholding of solid food. It is an action which is rooted in deep moral resolve.
As Jitu Brown, hunger striker and community organizer, said, “When you haven’t eaten for a while you gain great clarity.”
Playing by the Rules
By every measure, the coalition for Dyett School has followed all the rules. They engaged with the In Chicago: Dyett Hunger Strike Day 14 – Supporting and Defending - Living in Dialogue:

Seattle Schools Community Forum: Public Education in 2015-2016 - What Will Happen?

Seattle Schools Community Forum: Public Education in 2015-2016 - What Will Happen?:

Public Education in 2015-2016 - What Will Happen?






I believe that this year is to be a pivotal one in public education - for our district, our state and nationally.
I'll go in reverse order. 

Nationally, that issue of opting out over Common Core testing/overtesting is not going away.  No amount about saber-rattling, shaming or finger-wagging is going to change that. 

In 2016 we will elect a new president and I can only say if you believe in "choice" via charters and voucher, vote Republican.  Because that is exactlywhat will happen.  There is not a single Republican I would trust on public education issues (and that's a sad thing to say given how many of them there are).  Trump is the only one with no clear views but I'm thinking the first thing he would do for public education is to make mandatory citizenship reviews of every single student in public schools a reality. 

But with a Republican president, along with vouchers and massive charterization of public schools,  we would probably see a big pullback on federal reach into public education.  Common Core might be weakened by this move.  

But Clinton, Sanders and the other Dems are not-so-stellar either on public education issues so I'm (again) likely to be disappointed for public education, no matter who wins.

For Washington State, we will go into Jan. 2016 seeing the Legislature continue to tie itself into knots over school funding and ignoring I-1351 about class size.  It's going to take some real leadership and public will to create a change that will mean a fundamental change in how we fund our STATE andNot just public education.  I said this to the Governor but I'm not sure he's the 
Seattle Schools Community Forum: Public Education in 2015-2016 - What Will Happen?:

Tools for Tailored Learning May Expose Students’ Personal Details - The New York Times

Tools for Tailored Learning May Expose Students’ Personal Details - The New York Times:

Tools for Tailored Learning May Expose Students’ Personal Details








If the efforts by state legislators to restrict the use of student data are any guide, the email addresses and search queries of the nation’s schoolchildren are a hot commodity.
In May, Georgia adopted a law barring online services designed for elementary through high school from selling or sharing students’ names, email addresses, test results, grades or socioeconomic or disability information. It also bars them from using the data to target students with ads.
In August, Delaware enacted a law that forbids online school services from selling students’ personal details — including their political or religious affiliations, food purchases, text messages, photos, videos and web searches — or using the information to market to them.
Those are just two of the 182 bills introduced in 46 states this year intended to bolster protections for student information, according to areport this month from Data Quality Campaign, a nonprofit group that advocates the effective use of student data in education. Fifteen of those states have passed 28 laws, said the group, which is financed in part by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
The activity stands in stark contrast to legislative interest just two years ago, when Oklahoma was the only state to pass such legislation. It also provides a clear indication of the rapid adoption of learning apps in classrooms — and of concerns that these novel technologies generate a trove of new data about students that could be used in unforeseen ways.
Many of the new tools are designed to tailor learning to each child. To achieve that sort of customization, the software may collect and analyze a Tools for Tailored Learning May Expose Students’ Personal Details - The New York Times:

Special Nite Cap: Catch Up on Today's Post 8/30/15 #SaveDyett


SPECIAL NITE CAP 

CORPORATE ED REFORM



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