Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Philly shows Chicago what democracy looks like. | Fred Klonsky

Philly shows Chicago what democracy looks like. | Fred Klonsky:

Philly shows Chicago what democracy looks like.

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Philadelphia mayor-elect Jim Kenney and Helen Gym, council woman-elect.

The city is run by a mayor who pushes a school reform agenda that focuses on closing neighborhood schools and opening the city to charters.

The head of the schools at one time was Paul Vallas.

The school district itself is in dire financial condition.

What once were school district jobs have been outsourced to private companies.

The relationship between the teachers union and the city and school administration couldn’t be worse. Teachers who were promised a contractual raise years ago have yet to see it in their paychecks.

I’m not talking about Chicago.

This describes my birthplace, Philadelphia.

On Tuesday a new mayor was elected and the leader of the community fight Philly shows Chicago what democracy looks like. | Fred Klonsky:

Who Created The Cages? [About That Teacher Life] | The Jose Vilson

Who Created The Cages? [About That Teacher Life] | The Jose Vilson:

Who Created The Cages? [About That Teacher Life]

broken_bird_cage_by_tinhan


A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to speak at William Paterson University in New Jersey to their college of education. Their education program definitely has the right leaders to move their future teachers forward. After I spoke at length about being a teacher, cultural competence, and teacher leadership, I was enlightened by so many students, future counselors, and faculty who wanted to push back against our current education reform agenda. They also had a keen eye on equity questions, and I was happy to elucidate wherever possible. I’m blessed to do such things because I don’t know any K-12 educators (if any) who have a similar speaking schedule while full-time teaching.
But don’t let the itineraries fool you: my first professional priority is teaching my students math.
There’s an exhaustive tally of items I have to worry about since the honeymoon period came to an end. A student or two have taken calculators home, perhaps never to be seen again. A student starts off with high expectations for himself and falls off into his own distress and lack of self-confidence. A few students get suspended for the incomprehensible, though I’m sure it made sense to them. A few students learn to love math, while one student spends time with me after class so I can make the case Who Created The Cages? [About That Teacher Life] | The Jose Vilson:

Jersey Jazzman: Charter Schools, An Exchange: Part V

Jersey Jazzman: Charter Schools, An Exchange: Part V:

Charter Schools, An Exchange: Part V



Dmitri Mehlhorn and I continue our exchange about charter schools.

Part I: Mehlhorn's opener.

Part II: My reply.

Part III: Mehlhorn's response.

Part IV: My second reply.

Leave your thoughts in the comments below. My final reply will be up shortly.

* * *

Five Questions for Charter Critics
Jazzman-Mehlhorn Episode V

Reform skeptic Jersey Jazzman is hosting a debate about charter schools. He and I have spent 4 posts and about 10,000 words discussing the past few years’ worth of research by charter advocates, detractors, and academics. We will probably have a “long tail” of comments in social media, but this is the final formal installment of my appeals to Jazzman and the other skeptics who have engaged over the past year or so, including Sue Alexander, Dr. John Thompson, Deb Stahl, Jack Covey, Ajay Srikanth, Daniel Katz, Greg Clark, Mindy Rosier, Ben Spielberg, Peter Greene, Ben Faber, Randi Weingarten, Dr. Bruce Baker, Gail Richmond, Ed Harris, Jennifer Berkshire, and others.

If you’re up for it, I have five questions for all of you. Of course, this is not an exhaustive list – we could talk for years about test scores, poverty, fixed costs, and other issues. But in the spirit of trying to make progress in at least some areas, I’d be grateful for your honest take in these five areas, not conflated with other issues.  

(1) Jazzman, why don’t TPS test results go down as charters expand? 

Mark, the skeptics’ most common and most powerful arguments involve “skimming.” Compared to TPS [traditional public schools], these arguments claim that charter
- See more at: http://jerseyjazzman.blogspot.com/2015/11/charter-schools-exchange-part-v.html#sthash.9zeoFDZA.dpuf


Commercialism in Schools: No Windfall For Districts and Students Pay a Huge Price - NEA Today

Commercialism in Schools: No Windfall For Districts and Students Pay a Huge Price - NEA Today:

Commercialism in Schools: No Windfall For Districts and Students Pay a Huge Price

commercialism_in_schools




Last month, educators, parents and community members mobilized against “McTeacher Night,” an event at which educators sit behind the counter at local McDonald’s franchises and serve up hamburgers, french fries and soda to their students. McDonald’s bills it as a “popular and successful school fundraiser.” Teacher and parent Mark Noltner sees a blatant attempt to market fast food to children.
“It’s hard enough helping my daughter navigate the minefield of unhealthy marketing; the last thing she needs is her teachers hawking junk food. And as a teacher myself, it infuriates me that McDonald’s would manipulate the trust that teachers develop with their students,” said Noltner, who complained to the principal of his daughter’s school and reached out to other educators to create awareness about the event.
A flyer advertising McDonald's "McTeacher's Night"
A flyer advertising McDonald’s “McTeacher’s Night”
The National Education Association and more than 50 state and local teacher unions sent a letter to McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook, demanding an end to McTeacher’s Night.
“We’re fighting a major national health crisis in childhood obesity, and schools across the nation are doing amazing work to help kids learn about healthy foods,” said Jim Bender, executive director of NEA Healthy Futures. “The practice of exploiting educators and jeopardizing children’s health for the sake of corporate profits is unconscionable.”
The infiltration of public schools by corporate marketing doesn’t begin or end with McTeacher’s Night. Students have been exposed to commercialism in schools for decades and through a variety of methods. Product advertising adorns school hallways, lockers and buses. Teachers use corporate-sponsored materials in their classrooms. Schools enter into exclusive agreements with soda companies to sell their products on school grounds. Corporations often subsidize school events. And yet, these practices – “McTeacher Night” notwithstanding – have generally not registered so much as a blip on the public’s radar screen.
“I think people tend to underestimate the risks and the downsides of these types of activities in schools,” says Faith Boninger, a researcher at the University of Colorado and co-author with Alex Molnar of the new book, “Sold Out: How Marketing in Schools Threatens Student Well-being and Undermines Their Education.” “Advertising is such a big part of our culture, so people just shrug and figure, ‘Well, kids are inundated by commercials in their lives anyway, so what’s the big deal?’
A Captive Audience
Students, like many adults, probably believe that advertising doesn’t influence their attitudes and behavior. But it does, which is why corporations are more than happy to shell out billions of dollars on it annually, although exact figures are hard to pinpoint. In a 2006 report, however, Boninger and Molnar estimated that roughly 83 percent of district public schools had advertising by corporations in schools and Commercialism in Schools: No Windfall For Districts and Students Pay a Huge Price - NEA Today:

Special Nite Cap: Catch Up on Today's Post 11/4/15



CORPORATE ED REFORM






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