Sunday, January 24, 2016

Some of Those Gov.-Snyder-Released Emails on the Flint Water Crisis | deutsch29

Some of Those Gov.-Snyder-Released Emails on the Flint Water Crisis | deutsch29:

Some of Those Gov.-Snyder-Released Emails on the Flint Water Crisis

On January 20, 2016, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder released a 274-page file of his emails related to the Flint water crisis.
The January 20, 2016, Detroit News article references certain emails in Snyder’s release as being key to understanding state culpability in the water crisis.
Here are some excerpts from the article:
Lansing — Gov. Rick Snyder was advised in late September that the state bore responsibility for Flint’s water problems because former state Treasurer Andy Dillon made “the ultimate decision” to let the city leave the Detroit system, according to emails released Wednesday.
The city later turned to corrosive Flint River water that caused aging pipes to release lead into the drinking water. …
In late September, then-Chief of Staff Dennis Muchmore offered a contrarian view at times about whether the state was on the hook for costs associated with switching Flint back to Detroit’s water.
“I can’t figure out why the state is responsible except that Dillon did make the 
Some of Those Gov.-Snyder-Released Emails on the Flint Water Crisis | deutsch29:


Over 200 Educators in New York Receive Erroneous Scores Linked to Student Performance - The New York Times

Over 200 Educators in New York Receive Erroneous Scores Linked to Student Performance - The New York Times:

Over 200 Educators in New York Receive Erroneous Scores Linked to Student Performance



 More than 200 teachers and principals received erroneous scores from New York State on a contentious measurement that ties their performance to how well their students do on tests, according to state documents obtained by The New York Times.

The error, which affected a small percentage of scores for the 2014-15 academic year, could be another blow to the practice of linking educator performance to student exams, a system that has come under fire in recent years.
A letter sent to district superintendents on Friday said that certain test results had been excluded from state-provided growth scores — which track student performance on state exams — for less than 1 percent of the more than 40,000 educators who received such feedback.
The state Education Department attributed the error to a contractor, American Institutes for Research, a behavioral and social science research group based in Washington, and said the blunder affected principals and certain teachers whose growth scores included schoolwide measurements of student performance. (Teachers whose scores incorporated only their own students’ tests were not affected.) The letter said the problems occurred “almost exclusively” in grades nine through 12.
The error involved numerical scores that are translated into growth ratings, which can be classified as “highly effective,” “effective,” “developing” or “ineffective.” Dennis Tompkins, a spokesman for the Education Department, said that while about 250 principals and teachers received incorrect scores, the error was large enough only to change the growth ratings for 30 educators, all of whom were principals. That metric is just one of several components in an overall performance rating, and Mr. Tompkins said that no overall performance ratings were affected by the errors.
Nonetheless, he said scores for the more than 40,000 educators would be recalculated at the contractor’s expense; the higher score would be the one that counts.
“No one will be negatively impacted by A.I.R.’s error,” Mr. Tompkins said.
It is not the first time there have been errors in test-based ratings. Three years ago, the Washington public school system said that problems in its measurements had led to erroneous ratings for 44 teachers, one of whom was fired as a result of the poor evaluation.
In New York, the practice of linking evaluations to student test performance has faced criticism. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo pushed hard last Over 200 Educators in New York Receive Erroneous Scores Linked to Student Performance - The New York Times:

The Call to Stand Up For Students

The Call to Stand Up For Students:

The Call to Stand Up For Students


Rank and File Teachers Call on NYSUT Leadership to Do More
 The Call to Stand Up For Students:
We are a coalition of educators motivated by a desire to provide our students with an authentic, developmentally appropriate, culturally relevant, and child-centered public education. As we near the 2016 testing season, hundreds of thousands of young learners will be asked to submit to 9 hours of flawed and harmful state assessments that reduce teaching and learning to a test score, narrow the curriculum, label the majority of children failures, and squander resources, ultimately providing no educational benefit.
While the opt out movement has captured the attention of policymakers,there has been no substantive change. The only change is that school districts must now use limited time and resources to negotiate another APPR plan that requires both more testing for NYS children and a continued focus on evaluating teachers through test scores.
Despite this glaring lack of relief for students, the state teachers union (NYSUT) has failed to sound the alarm, and instead has launched a million dollar member-funded “multi-media campaign to highlight progress.” While a campaign video vaguely states that “there is still a lot of work to do,” the campaign is absent of any call to action. A similar campaign by the UFT–the state’s largest local union, based in NYC–goes so far as to spread misinformation, making the false claim that teachers will not be evaluated by test scores for the next 4 years. Nothing could be further from the truth. 
As educators, we are committed to sharing factual information so that those impacted by these policies can make informed decisions. Here are the facts:
  • The Education Transformation Act of 2015 requires that 50% of  a teacher’s evaluation be based on a student performance measure. This will not change unless the law is amended.  
  • Although teachers will still receive a growth score based on state tests, a 4 year moratorium has been passed on the use of state-provided growth The Call to Stand Up For Students:


Ed Notes Online: Salon on WE CAUCUS: “11,000 smart, committed teachers can change the world”:

Ed Notes Online: Salon on WE CAUCUS: “11,000 smart, committed teachers can change the world”: A group of working Philadelphia teachers is looking to upset the status quo of the teachers union:

Salon on WE CAUCUS: “11,000 smart, committed teachers can change the world”: A group of working Philadelphia teachers is looking to upset the status quo of the teachers union

we 20photo 20of 20slate
From left: Amy Roat, Yaasiyn Muhammad, Ismael Jimenez, Kelley Collings.


Salon on WE CAUCUS: “11,000 smart, committed teachers can change the world”: A group of working Philadelphia teachers is looking to upset the status quo of the teachers union

UP FOR A VOTE: "SOCIAL JUSTICE UNIONISM," IN WHICH EVERY TEACHERS UNION MEMBER PARTICIPATES IN EDUCATIONAL CHANGE

MORE's homies from Philly get noticed.
The solution WE is offering is part of a national movement that seeks to drastically change the modus operandi of the teachers union from one in which union members pay dues and trust that the big decisions are being made by the leaders and lawyers at the bargaining table to one in which every single teachers union member actively participates in grass-roots educational change. This new approach, called social justice unionism, comes with a track record of success in cities like Chicago, St. Paul, Seattle and Portland.
I remember sitting in a bar in Chicago a few years ago chatting with some future WE Caucus people. They were interested in the idea of a caucus and were asking MORE people for some ideas. Then lookie down the road and these guys really may have a shot at winning something in the elections next month.

Some of you may have seen the very idea of social justice unionism, which is a merger of bread and butter issues with issues of concern to parents and students, being trashed as turning people off. Yet the only real challenge to Randi's control of the teacher union movement has come from SJ movements in the cities named above. Philadelphia has its own version of the Unity Caucus loyalty oath machine run by president Jerry Jordan.
Roat and Muhammad are running for president and vice president of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers (PFT) in the union’s upcoming leadership election, which will take place by mail-in ballot Feb. 4-23. PFT elections happen every four years, though they are usually non-events and many teachers report being unaware there are elections at all; the current leadership team, the collective bargaining or “CB team,” which is headed up by Jerry Jordan, has been steering the ship since the 1980s. Roat is part of a slate of nine candidates, all of whom come out of the Caucus of Working Educators (WE), the first group to seriously challenge the leadership of the PFT in three decades.
Three decades without a real election in Philly. The way Randi and Mulgrew like it. I wrote about Randi's visit to Philly to Ed Notes Online: Salon on WE CAUCUS: “11,000 smart, committed teachers can change the world”: A group of working Philadelphia teachers is looking to upset the status quo of the teachers union:

Special Nite Cap: Catch Up on Today's Post 1/24/15


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