Monday, May 15, 2017

The Monday Twist Diane Ravitch's blog | A site to discuss better education for all

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

The Monday Twist Diane Ravitch's blog 
A site to discuss better education for all

Nancy Bailey: Time for DeVos to Resign
Nancy E. Bailey writes here about Secretary Betsy DeVos’s unpleasant experience at Bethune-Cookman University, where she was booed by the graduates of the class of 2017. She thinks it was a travesty that the students were not allowed any say in the choice of their commencement speaker. After all, the day is meant to honor them and their accomplishments. Instead, they got a speaker who is in a job
Florida: Chaos at Palm Beach Charter School
Florida is a welcoming state for charter school. It is easy to win approval to open, there is virtually no supervision or accountability, and public money flows freely based on enrollment. In this environment, problems are inevitable. The latest mess is the Eagle Arts Academy, a charter school in Palm Beach.

Susan Ochshorn: The Danger of Universal Pre-K
Mayor Bill de Blasio’s major initiative in education was implementation of universal pre-K for four-year-olds. Now he has announced his plan to provide universal pre-K for three-year-olds. The earlier initiative was popular, so what could go wrong? The Mayor needs the state to fund it with $700 million, which is far from certain. Leonie Haimson, founder of Class Size Matters, says there are too m

Hawaii: Why Import Corporate Reformers from the Mainland?

Andy Jones’s a high school teacher in Hawaii. He writes here with profound dismay about the search for a new superintendent for the schools of Hawaii. He was not sorry to see the current superintendent go. She was an avid supporter of test-based accountability and data-data-data. “This week we learned that the new superintendent will likely be one of two products of the current educational Big Bo
William Mathis on the Illusory Graduation Rate of Students in D.C. Voucher Schools

Trump recently told a group of students attending voucher schools in D.C. that they were very lucky because the graduation rate of the voucher program was 98%. That was far more than the evaluation of the program, which claimed a rate of 82%. But when I re-read the final evaluation report on the program, I couldn’t understand how the evaluators arrived at 82%. Newspaper accounts regularly say tha


Bernie Endorses Steve Zimmer and Imelda Padilla

The critical runoff election for school board in Los Angeles is Tuesday May 16. There are two crucial races. One is Steve Zimmer Vs. Nick Melvoin. Melvoin has received millions from leaders of the charter industry, such as Eli Broad, Alice Walton, Michael Bloomberg, and Reed Hastings. He is the beneficiary of millions from people who do not live in Los Angeles. The other is Imelda Padilla vs. Kel
Texas: Republicans in State Senate Try Again to Push Through a Voucher Bill

You know about the camel’s nose under the tent? That’s the game that Texas Republicans are playing in an effort to establish a foothold for vouchers. They have copied this tactic from other states. It goes like this: We don’t want vouchers for everyone; we want them just for this very small, very needy, very deserving group of children. If they get that bill passed, within a year or two, another
California: Charter School Will Close Because of Founder’s Audacious Misuse of School Funds

The California State Board of Education accepted its staff recommendation and voted not to renew the Oxford Preparatory Academy charter school in Chino. The school will close June 30. Parents defended the school, and one member of the board made a last-ditch plea for the school but he was outvoted. “But board members grappled over the fate of the high-performing school that might be fatally encum
Will the Trump-DeVos Alliance Win Control of Los Angeles Public Schools?

“In the Public Interest,” an organization that keeps track of privatization of the public sector, points out that Trump and DeVos have a lot riding on the outcome of the school board election in Los Angeles on May 16. Their allies have invested millions of dollars in gaining control of the school board so they can turn students and schools over to private hands. If they can defeat Steve Zimmer an
Happy Mother’s Day to All the Moms Who Read This!

Happy Mother’s Day to all you Moms out there! I hope you enjoy the day and have the chance to see your child or children. I had three sons. One died of leukemia at the age of two. My sons are my treasure. Though I must admit that I am sorry that I did not have a daughter. My two sons each have two sons. They add to my treasure. Enjoy your day!
Peter Dreier: Who Are the Corporate Plutocrats Trying to Defeat Steve Zimmer in Los Angeles?

Peter Dreier, professor of political science at Occidental College in Los Angeles, warns that a cabal of billionaires are trying to defeat Steve Zimmer in order to take control of the public schools and privatize them. The vote on May 16 is in the national spotlight. Can a handful of billionaires buy control of the nation’s second largest school district? Before naming names, Dreier writes: Some
Good News: Vergara-Copycat Lawsuit Tossed Out by Judge in New Jersey

A judge in New Jersey threw out a lawsuit intended to remove teachers’ seniority rights. This is the third loss for the corporate reformer groups that have tried to use the courts to strip away teachers’ job security. The “reformers” blame teachers and unions for low test scores while ignoring overwhelming evidence that poverty is the proximate cause of low scores. The first was the Vergara lawsu
Weaponized Philanthropy: A Report on the Bradley Foundation of Milwaukee

What do you know about the Lynne and Harry Bradley Foundation? Likely, not much. While Gates, Broad, and Walton go public with their eagerness to privatize public schools, Bradley has the same goals but stays under the media radar. The Center for Media and Democracy now reveals what everyone needs to know about the Bradley Foundation . It has more assets than the Koch family foundations. It was t
Los Angeles: The Great Smear Campaign Nears Its End

Blogger Red Queen in LA has created a graphic to depict the spending in the Los Angeles school board race between Steve Zimmer and Nick Melvoin. A shocking amount of Melvoin’s money has been spent on negative campaigning, ads that 
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