Monday, December 14, 2015

When it’s okay to give public education advocates the side-eye - The Hechinger Report

When it’s okay to give public education advocates the side-eye - The Hechinger Report:

When it’s okay to give public education advocates the side-eye
At least one group cares for youth beyond the schoolhouse


School improvement isn’t the goal. Community wellness is. Schools are just a means to an end.



How many times have you given the side-eye to the education advocate who screamed at the top of his lungs during the charter school rally but couldn’t muster up a mere tweet for Trayvon, Tamir or Michael?
He pushed the governor for school choice, but stayed silent on healthcare expansion. You know, the person who decreed “poverty doesn’t matter;” “you can’t fix poverty;” or my favorite, “maintain a laser-light focus on what goes on in a classroom.” Yeah, that person — continue to give him the side-eye.
Caring for children requires extending one’s concern beyond a classroom. New statistics in the New Orleans Youth Index 2015 back this. Released by The Data Center of New Orleans, the Youth Index is a statistical snapshot of the well-being of the city’s children and youth from birth to 24 years old. It is meant to “inform the development of strategies that can improve the academic, social, and behavioral outcomes.”
Although the report focuses on New Orleans, all cities can learn why a rigid focus on school success along test scores can lose the forest for the trees. Kids don’t live in schools; they live in communities, and their wellness should be the target of change.
For instance, the data show that you simply can’t be a strong school advocate without advocating for healthcare reform. When it comes to immunizations, New Orleans at approximately 76 percent and Louisiana at about 80 percent both fall below the state’s target of 90 percent of all children having received their shots on schedule.
Infant mortality is also an important indicator of overall community wellness. The Youth Index reported that in 2013, the New Orleans infant mortality rate was 9.3 per 1,000 live births compared to 8.7 for Louisiana. Both of those rates were higher than the national rate of 6.0 per 1,000 live births in 2013.
Poverty matters. Anyone who tells you otherwise simply is denying children opportunities for a better life. As the report states, poverty may be “the single greatest threat to children’s healthy brain development.” The stress of violence, neglect and economic hardship can “disrupt the development of brain architecture, leading to lifelong difficulties in learning, memory, and self-regulation.” When it’s okay to give public education advocates the side-eye - The Hechinger Report:

WOULD MAINSTREAM REPORTERS LIKE TO BE MY DEEP THROAT? - Perdaily.com

WOULD MAINSTREAM REPORTERS LIKE TO BE MY DEEP THROAT? - Perdaily.com:

WOULD MAINSTREAM REPORTERS LIKE TO BE MY DEEP THROAT?

Snowden.jpg
 (Mensaje se repite en Español)

Back in June of 2016 I was standing outside of Wendy Greuel's campaign headquarters on election night after her failed attempt to win retiring Congressman Henry Waxman's seat. Both national and local reporters were also there to hear her concession speech.

To pass the time I thought I would go around and ask the reporters present the following question, which I never thought they would answer: Given your unparalleled access to those in power at places like the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), are there good news stories about LAUSD or other news subjects that you would like to report but can't get past your editors? To a reporter, the answer was in the affirmative.

We now have either 5 or 6 corporations- depending on your source- that control virtually all media in the United States. We have arrived at a point where reporters are so muzzled by their corporate owners and editors preconceived, distorted, and often downright false dominant narratives that there is no longer the possibility of reporting anything that even remotely resembles a truly fact-based news story.

While I have railed against this kind of "reporting" that I have often found reminiscent of the state run media in the old Soviet Union, I also have been empathetic enough to put myself in the position of a reporter with a family, a mortgage, and kids going to college and understand why these WOULD MAINSTREAM REPORTERS LIKE TO BE MY DEEP THROAT? - Perdaily.com: 

Districts must ensure equity in rules for accelerating students in math | EdSource

Districts must ensure equity in rules for accelerating students in math | EdSource:

Districts must ensure equity in rules for accelerating students in math

CREDIT: U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
Add this to California school boards’ to-do lists for 2016: Create a clear-cut, objective policy for determining which incoming 9th-grade students qualify to accelerate their sequence of math courses in high school. Districts must have the criteria in place by the start of the next school year under a state law that goes into effect on Jan. 1.
Earlier this year the Legislature passed Senate Bill 359, known as the California Mathematics Placement Act. Advocates of the new law, led by the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, say it is a big win for equity: providing all students equal access to courses culminating in Calculus in their senior year, giving them an advantage in admission to the University of California or a head start in majoring in science or engineering.
Past research indicated that low-income, African-American and Hispanic students were disproportionately held back from a more advanced course they should have been placed in. The new law was written to ensure that all students face the same objective criteria for determining the path to calculus. But they also acknowledge it’s too soon to say what the right criteria and the most effective pathway to advanced math will be; determining that may take years of experimenting and refining.
“The law is but the first step,” said Gina Dalma, special adviser to the CEO for public policy at the Silicon Valley Community Foundation. “We are hoping Districts must ensure equity in rules for accelerating students in math | EdSource:

Special Nite Cap: Catch Up on Today's Post 12/14/15



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