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Saturday, January 8, 2022

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

A site to discuss better education for all

Melania Is Cashing in by Selling Her Stuff
At the Washington Post today, we learn that Melania is monetizing bits of her clothing . Mark Lasswell writes: Melania Trump apparently didn’t get the memo from that noted artist Hunter Biden: You’re supposed to cash in on your presidential family ties while the guy is still in office. She might be late to the party, but the former first lady is monetizing with a gusto worthy of, oh, brewmaster B
Stephen Dyer Destroys the Case for Vouchers in Ohio—or Anywhere Else
Stephen Dyer is a former state legislator in Ohio and an expert on school finance. In the latest post on his blog, 10th Period, he shows why the arguments for vouchers are a fraud. Vouchers are sold as a salvation for Black and Hispanic students, yet they mostly subsidize white children escaping desegregated schools. And while they are sold with the promise of improving student performance, the v
Jan Resseger: 100 School Districts in Ohio File Lawsuit Against Vouchers
Jan Resseger writes here about a lawsuit against vouchers filed by 100 school districts and the Ohio Coalition for Equity and Adequacy. She begins: On Tuesday, 100 Ohio public school districts and the Ohio Coalition for Equity and Adequacy of School Funding filed a lawsuit challenging the legality of Ohio’s EdChoice Scholarship Program under the provisions of the Ohio Constitution. EdChoice is Oh

JAN 06

Dana Milbank: Republicans Allow Their Crazies to Represent the Party
Dana Milbank, Washington Post columnist, wrote about the no longer surprising abdication of the Republicans on the anniversary of January 6, leaving Congresspeople Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz as the party’s representative. He writes: Exactly a year earlier, in and around the House chamber, Republicans and Democrats hid together, on the floor, behind chairs and under desks, as outnumbere
New Hampshire: Legislature Tables Unpopular Voucher Bill!
This is good news that few expected. The New Hampshire legislature, with Republican majorities in both houses and a Republican Governor, tabled a sweeping voucher bill. In hearings, public sentiment was overwhelmingly opposed to vouchers for private schools, religious schools, and home schooling, but Republicans seemed determined to push through their proposal. The voucher bill was tabled (not pa
Trump Advisor: How Steve Bannon and I Planned to Overturn the 2020 Election
Peter Navarro was Trump’s Trade Advisor. He recently published a book about his time in the Trump administration. The most fascinating part of his book, according to those who have read advance copies, is his story about the plan to overturn the 2020 election and keep Trump as president. He has done several media interviews. This account in Rolling Stone relies on this one that appeared in The Da
This Is What Happened on January 6, 2021
Since there is now a deep partisan divide over what happened on January 6, it’s helpful to remember that there is extensive video footage of the events. Some footage was taken by the media, some by video cameras installed in the Capitol, some by police body cameras, and some by the participants who wanted to have a record of what they did. Hundreds of arrests have been made of participants in the
A Day That Will Live in Infamy: January 6, 2021
Never in the history of the United States has the U.S. Capitol been invaded and ransacked by its own citizens. Never in the history of this nation was there a violent attempt to prevent the Constitutional process of certifying the election of a new President. It happened on January 6, 2021. The fact that this unprecedented insurrection was encouraged and abetted by the sitting President is also r

JAN 05

Who Are the American Insurrectionists?
On January 4, PBS “Frontline” ran a chilling documentary about the armed groups that are behind domestic terrorism. The program is called “American Insurrection,” and it is an eye-opener. You no doubt have heard about or read about all the groups that are interviewed–the Proud Boys, the Bougaloo Bois, and many others–but this documentary ties them together. They are armed, and they are dangerous.
CNN: The Most Unlikely Anti-Racists
CNN published an excellent story about whites who grew up s urrounded by racism, but turned against racism as adults. You may recall the story of Matt Hawn, the high school teacher in Tennessee who was fired for teaching his students about racism and white privilege. He was a tenured teacher for 16 years. He never received anything less than a satisfactory rating. He was also a coach. He has appe
Oklahoma Republican Wants to Deputize Private Citizens to Sue School Districts
There seems to be no bottom to “how far can Republicans fall?” Fall from common sense, fall from civic duty, fall from intelligent decision-making? Texas created a model for deputizing private citizens to report abortions and offering them a $10,000 bounty. Now, a Republican in Oklahoma has copied that model to catch and punish schools that hold copies of forbidden books. Under a new senate bill
Los Angeles Times: The “Unentitled Kids”: California’s New Generation of College-Bound Stars
Teresa Watanabe wrote a wonderful story about kids in a public school in Los Angeles who are college-bound, despite their demographic profiles. They don’t have college-educated parents or SAT tutors. What they do have is a school—the DowntownMagnets High School— where the professionals are dedicated to their success. Read about this school and ask yourself why Bill Gates is not trying to replicat

JAN 04

New Hampshire Alert! Voucher Vultures Are Coming for Your Tax Dollars!
This is a message from the Network for Public Education Action. New Hampshire Republicans plan to introduce voucher legislation tomorrow, to allow public funds to subsidize students at private and religious schools: It’s a new year, but the fight is the same. Privatizers are introducing a new voucher variant to infect and collapse state public school systems, and this year the first case is in Ne
Mercedes Schneider: The All-Charter New Orleans School District Must Downsize
Mercedes Schneider informs us that New Orleans, the nation’s first and so far only all-charter district, m ust downsize. It has 50,000 seats, but only 47,000 students. How will the district handle this challenge? The core problem, she points out, is that each school has its own bureaucracy. How will they decide how to “right size” the district? She writes: Stability in a school district is not a
Being Black at KIPP
This message came from an educator who studies racial equity: From: Being Blackatkipp Subject: To whom it may concern, BeingblackatKIPP is an Instagram account that was created in the wake of the George Floyd social reckoning. During this time, I was empowered to also seek change in the KIPP network of public charter schools. I had witnessed first hands for many years how white supremacy culture

JAN 03

One Year Later, the Rightwing Zealots Are Fighting Each Other
Most of us are familiar with left wing sectarianism, the tendency to organize into a circular firing squad. In the 1930s, the U.S left splintered into Democrats, Socialists, Democratic Socialists, Communists, Bolsheviks, Mensheviks, Trotskyites, Cannonites, Schachtmanites, Lovestoneites, and many other factions. Most of their infighting was over ideological and doctrinal differences. Now, as the
Who Demoralized the Nation’s Teachers? Readers Respond
Last week, I posted my thoughts on “Who Demoralized the Nation’s Teachers?” I sought to identify the people and organizations that spread the lie that America’s public schools were “broken” and that public school teachers were the cause. The critics slandered teachers repeatedly, claiming that teachers were dragging down student test scores. They said that today’s teachers were not bright enough;
Tom Ultican has written extensively about the greed and politics behind privatization. In this post , he reviews an important new book about the dangers of privatization by Donald Cohen and Allen Mikaelian. I urge you to buy the book. Ultican writes: Ronald Reagan claimed the nine most terrifying words in the English language are “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.” The new book, The

JAN 02

Marion Brady Wants Your Advice
Marion Brady is an educator who has argued for many years that subject-matter based curriculum is wrong. He thinks we need to change our ingrained ways of thinking. He asks for your advice: Brady writes: In 1966, the Phi Delta Kappan published an article of mine criticizing the traditional “core” curriculum adopted in 1893 that organizes most of the middle school and high school day. I suggested
Jack Hassard: Who Is Getting Infected with COVID?
Jack Hassard, retired teacher of science teachers, pays close attention to facts and science. Here he presents the facts about who is getting infected with COVID. He writes: Here are two charts from the CDC that we can use to answer that question. Unvaccinated people are 5 – 10 times more likely to get infected than vaccinated people. They are also 14 – 20 times more likely to die from COVID. Ope
Wisconsin: How a Tribal Group Launched a MAGA Charter School
Why would a Native American tribe in Wisconsin sponsor a MAGA charter school? The Lake Country Classical Academy, an independent charter school authorized by the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe College in northern Wisconsin, opened in September in the Milwaukee suburb of Oconomowoc, about a five-hour drive south on Interstate 94 from Hayward, where the college is located — about as far away from Ojibw

JAN 01

Happy 2022: Protect Your Health and the Health of Your Family and Community
Have a happy, HEALTHY New Year! Get vaccinated if you haven’t already, although I can’t believe that any reader of this blog would not be double vaccinated and boosted by now. Wear an N95 or KN95 mask. ( Here is advice from the New York Times about how to buy high-quality N95 masks online.) My friends tell me that this is the N95 mask used by nurses at Mt.Sinai Hospital in New York City. Georgia

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