Saturday, April 15, 2017

Have a Ball Saturday on Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all

Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all:

Have a Ball Saturday on Diane Ravitch's blog 
A site to discuss better education for all

April Had a Baby! Watch!
One million people watched the birth of a baby to April the giraffe as her mate Oliver watched. It was thrilling to see! Scroll all the way to the bottom of the story for the full video.
Trump Fills the Swamp with Lobbyists
You are not likely to hear anything more about DTS, which Trump used to mean DRAIN THE SWAMP. Remember when he used to complain about the lobbyists and moochers who filled the swamp of D.C. Politics? He has filled an even bigger 

Dana Woldow: We Lost a Fighter for Children and Public Schools
Dana Woldow of San Francisco was a fighter for healthy school lunches and a fighter against corporate for-profit schooling. She died at home at age 65. Her three sons were graduates of the San Francisco public schools. She is credited for 

Education Reform? Put Your Baby in Front of A Computer, Please!
Indiana legislators intend to introduce virtual pre-K as part of their expansion of preschool for the state. It is no doubt a way to save money for the state, just plopping babies in front of a computer, supervised by a parent, and calling it 

Two Public Schools in Los Angeles Win Grants to Replicate from Pro-Charter Organization
The Los Angeles organization Great Public Schools Now has awarded grants of $750,000 to two successful public schools to replicate themselves in new schools. This corporate-funded entity wants to demonstrate that it favors “all” 

Congratulations, Sara Stevenson! Politifact Rules that She Was Correct
Sara Stevenson, librarian at the O. Henry Middle School in Texas, signed up to testify at 8 am in opposition to the Senate bill authorizing vouchers. She says she was the fifth person to sign up. She went to work and returned at 2 pm and 

Ohio: New Voucher Bill Could Cost Taxpayers from $70 Million to $1.2 Billion
An Ohio legislator has proposed lifting the income cap for private school vouchers, so that 74% of all families in Ohio would be eligible to use a voucher to attend a religious or private school. The cost estimates of this proposal range from $70 million to $1.2 billion (if every eligible student were to use a voucher). The assumption–or hope–is that not every eligible student would use a voucher
DeVos’ Choice to Lead Civil Rights Office Complained about Affirmative Action
ProPublica, which just won a Pulitzer Prize for its investigative reporting, writes here that Betsy DeVos’ choice to lead the crucial Office of Civil Rights in the U.S. Department of Education has a curious history for someone in that role. Jackson will run the agency on an acting basis until an Assistant Secretary is chosen. She will eventually be a Deputy Assistant Secretary, which does not req


The Scariest of Tweets about the Teacher Shortage
I kept going back to this tweet because it is surreal. It is a teacher job fair at the University of Michigan. The tables are around the room, staffed and ready to hand out fliers to prospective teachers. But the hall is empty. There are no prospective teachers. Thanks, No Child Left Behind. Thanks, Race to the Top. Thanks, inventors and promoters of VAM. Thanks, teacher-bashers. Who will teach?
Guess Where Rahm Got the Idea for Make-a-Plan-Or-You-Can’t-Graduate-from-High-School?
Thanks to Jennifer Berkshire for tweeting out this article. Rahm’s big idea about requiring that high school students have a college acceptance or a military enrollment or a specific job or they can’t graduate was not his own. It was suggested to him by…..guess…three guesses….one guess: Arne. Between the two of them, they have had charge of the Chicago Public Schools for 16 years. How, exactly, h
Rhode Island and the Magic of Standardized Testing
Rhode Island State Commissioner Ken Wagner says that the state will drop the unpopular Common Core exam PARCC and adopt instead the Massachusetts test called MCAS. After all, if Massachusetts is the highest-achieving state in the nation, it must be because they have the best tests! So soon, you can expect Rhode Island to be up at the top of NAEP alongside Massachusetts because testing must be the
Valerie Strauss: Why Does California Allow Charters to Open Where They are Not Needed?
Valerie Strauss read the report prepared by Gordon Lafer for “In the Public Interest” about California’s lavish spending on facilities for charters where they are not needed. She reported here. She writes: The report says that “nearly 450 charter schools have opened in places that already had enough classroom space for all students — and this overproduction of schools was made possible by generou
Arthur Camins on The Passover Principle and Its Meaning for All Today
Arthur Camins wrote about what he calls “the Passover Principle” and why it has lessons for all of us today. Passover is a Jewish holiday that celebrates the liberation of the Jewish people from slavery in Egypt. It is a quintessential story of freedom and empowerment of a subject people. To give a small example, I was at the beauty salon the other day, where everyone is a refugee from Ukraine. M
Politico: Damage Control at ED For DeVos’ Dumb Comment about HBCUs
Politico has a exclusive report on the scrambling inside the US Department of Education to limit the damage after Secretary DeVos hailed the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities as models of choice. Her ignorant remark led to an explosion of negative reaction. Apparently she had n
Colorado: Teacher Shortage Approaching “Crisis” Proportions
We have heard from corporate reformers that Denver is the best city in the country when it comes to school choice (although DeVos says we shouldn’t be so quick to praise Denver because it doesn’t yet have vouchers). Teachers should be flocking to Colorado, especially Denver. Yet the Denver Post reports that the state of Colorado has a teacher shortage that is becoming a crisis. Teacher salaries h
Indiana: Inside a Voucher School
This post was written by a woman in Indiana who requested anonymity to protect the identity of her step-son. The Reality of Indiana Vouchers My husband’s child goes to an expensive private Catholic high school in Indianapolis. By a divorce agreement, my husband must pay for the child’s education at this school. To respect privacy, I will call the child “A.” If the administrators of the school wer
Mercedes Schneider Explains Why Betsy DeVos Never Mentions the School Where Her Mother Briefly Taught
Mercedes Schneider has been reading the archives of the local newspaper in Holland, Michigan, where the DeVos family reigns. She learned about the brief teaching career of her mother in the local public school. She learned the name of the school. She has a picture of the school. She knows the fate of the school. It was closed, after a century as the heart of the community. Read her post to learn
Jeff Bryant: Spring Time is the Right Time for Resistance to the DeVos Privatization Agenda Time
Jeff Bryant writes that Congress is in recess until April 23 and this is the time to reach out and speak to your member of Congress and your members of the state legislature about protecting public education against the DeVos privatization agenda. Join with your friends and neighbors. Join the Network for Public Education. Use its toolkit to inform yourself about the issues. Jeff writes: Why shou

Larry Lee: The Stories that Data Never Tell
Larry Lee, blogger and education activist in Alabama, posted this moving account by a teacher of the difference that art makes in the life of a child. This is a story told by veteran elementary educator Wendy Lang about one of her 

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