Monday, May 13, 2013

Smarter Balanced Digital Library - Assessment Information (CA Dept of Education)

Smarter Balanced Digital Library - Assessment Information (CA Dept of Education):

Smarter Balanced Digital Library

The Digital Library is a critical component of the Smarter Balanced system of assessments and will include a variety of resources to improve teaching and learning.
The Digital Library, set to launch in 2014, will provide teachers with an online clearinghouse of classroom-based, formative assessment strategies and practices that enhance day-to-day instruction, including resources to interpret data and reports from the Smarter Balanced summative and interim assessments.
State Networks of Educators Recruitment
The California Department of Education will recruit approximately 150 educators to form a State Network of Educators, charged with providing feedback and guidance on the resources to be included in the Smarter Balanced Digital Library.

Oregon Save Our Schools: Portland Public Schools Targets Teachers

Oregon Save Our Schools: Portland Public Schools Targets Teachers:

Portland Public Schools Targets Teachers

By Portland Teacher (writing anonymously out of fear of reprisal)

Just months after angry parents, students, and teachers forced Portland Public Schools (PPS) officials to back down from closing several neighborhood schools, PPS has found a new target: teachers. 

Negotiations between the school district and Portland Association of Teachers (PAT) began this month with such enormous differences between their two proposals, that the local media is already raising the possibility of a strike next year.
Given the widespread attacks on teachers nationwide, the decimation of the public school system in cities like Philadelphia and Detroit, and the relative success of union-bashing in states like Wisconsin and Michigan, PPS evidently believes now is the time to seize as much control as it can.
District officials recently appropriated the language of the Chicago Teachers’ strike in an Orwellian letter to the community that claimed their proposal was “updating” the teachers’ contract to give “our students the education 

Special Late Nite Cap UPDATE 5-13-13 #SOSCHAT #EDCHAT #P2




The pieces are all starting to come together. . .and the picture ain’t good

Thanks to Lefty, Dave Lefkowith, John White’s data scam is starting to take on a clearer shape. I just got another document from good ole Lefty from another new vendor called Cambium Education and Sopris Learning. It appears John White is planning to provide all of our student data to yet another inBloom-like vendor for DIBLELS data. This one will host quite a bit of data bases on reports they plan to make available to us in the RFP sent to Lefty on April 5th. I will include the intro letter as well as the names and descriptions of some of the reports this vendor is offering to produce for us, which would require quite a bit of our children’s data to produce.
I thought I recognized the name Vivian Fox, the signatory on the RFP proposal, and went back through the hundreds of pages of sideways and upside down scanned image files DOE supplied us in response to a FOIA 

Chris Hayes explains why Citizens United is the real scandal behind the IRS scandal

MSNBC host Chris Hayes on Monday night explained how the Supreme Court’s controversial Citizens United ruling lead to the current IRS scandal. The IRS on Friday admitted that it had targeted tea party groups applying to be social welfare nonprofits with extra scrutiny. Hayes said the Citizens...

Michigan Republicans Violate State Constitutional Guaranteed of a Public Education. Shut Down School District Early.

One of my biggest raps on private schools is that they can do anything they want, like....pack up and leave before daybreak. And that did happen in Milwaukee. I praised public schools for always being there, after all, they're guaranteed in state constitutions.

I guess the Republicans in Michigan want to make sure we don't even believe that about public schools. The fact the Gov. Rick Snyder broke the law, violated the constitutional guarantee, should land this guy in jail right? 

The Bathroom Crisis at Locke High School in L.A.

The Green Dot charter chain took over Locke High School in 2008.
It received $15 million of mostly private funding to overhaul the school and completely change its culture.
But the one challenge that Green Dot has been unable to overcome is to provide a safe, clean place for boys to go to the bathroom.
After the stalls were vandalized, the school ripped them out, leaving no privacy.
When you read the article, you will note that teachers were afraid to 

Jeff Bliss Wasn’t Arguing Against Teachers

I’m amazed that some of the same people who say, “Look at the hole in the wall theory” and “teachers don’t matter” and “just give kids videos and they’ll learn” are the same ones who rip on packets. What is a packet? It’s a prescribed, pre-organized, non-relational, non-interactive method of learning.
A Khan video is essentially a packet with a screen. Many glossy apps are merely packets with a tech twist (sometimes even more pre-programmed than a packet). The truth is that a packet is essentially the mindset of “leave the kids alone and let them learn at their own pace.”
I get it. That’s not entirely true. A packet lacks some of the choice and interactivity of a book or of social media or of twenty percent free exploration time. But on another level, some of the technology that people see as 

Trying Being A Propaganda Editor With “The Republica Times” Game

The Republica Times is a neat and simple game that puts you in the position of being an editor for a state-run newspaper. You have to keep the state happy and also engage your readers.
It could be a useful little activity to incorporate into a lesson on the importance of a free press.

LAUSD board to vote on breakfast in the classroom, school police

The Los Angeles school board meeting is expected to draw more than 1,500 demonstrators Tuesday as members are scheduled to vote to continue funding the classroom breakfast program, an increase in the school police force and other budget items

Mumford Gets 7 Years for Memphis Cheating Scheme

Clarence D. Mumford Sr., a former assistant principal in Memphis, was sentenced to seven years in prison for orchestrating a scheme to help teachers cheat on certification exams.

Schools Chief Blasts Democratic Mayoral Candidates

Dennis M. Walcott, chancellor of the New York City system, said that Democrats who spoke at a recent forum were pandering to the teachers’ union.

Nine San Fernando Valley schools seeking affiliated charter status

Nine more San Fernando Valley campuses would open this fall as charter schools if their applications are approved today by the Los Angeles Unified school board.

Parent trigger law invoked to kick out L.A. school's administrators

LOS ANGELES -- A group of parents appear ready to force the Los Angeles Unified School District to enact sweeping changes at their elementary school.

To successfully prepare students for their future, schools today have to be interconnected with other public institutions that can help them meet all the needs of each student ... not just intellectual growth but personal, interpersonal, emotional, physical, and mental health.

The Best Resources On “Close Reading” — Help Me FInd More

The concept of “close reading” has been getting more and more attention lately as the Common Core Standards are being implement.
As Dr. Douglas Fisher explains:
Close reading isn’t in the Common Core State Standards. However, an analysis of the Common Core State Standards really says you’ve got to learn the text well. The Common Core State Standards require that students 

New TFAers read a Top 10 list on Letterman

On Letterman the other day, the top 10 category was:  Top 10 reasons I’ve decided to become a teacher.  Reading the reasons were ten brand new 2013 corps members.
So of course it is pretty ironic that out of all the perspective teachers in the country who could have been chosen from various education programs, they chose to have TFAers who really have not ‘decided to become a teacher’ but who have decided to teach for two years and, most likely, go onto something else.  Statistically speaking, at least one of those ten teachers will not make it through the first year.  Some of these ten (I won’t say which) will have a lot of work to overcome how young and soft-spoken they seem.
These were the top ten reasons:
10.  I hope to live up to the teachers who inspired me, like Ms. What’s-her-name

Bammy awards


Nancy Flanagan


Name of Nominee:
Nominee's Organization
Ed Week
Nominators affiliation to nominee:
Tell us how he/she is making a difference:
What always strikes me about Nancy is how honest and direct she is. She's not inclined to worry what others may think of her opinions (of which she has many!), which is why she's able to write such wonderful posts as "Ten Things Legislators Should Know and Do When Making Education Policy." (I'm particularly fond of her suggestions that they don't know education just because they went to school, and they should take the tests kids have to take.) Nancy brings that same forthrightness to her role as an on-air commentator on BAM Radio Network. The education world is fortunate to have her among its ranks.

Can poor children learn? – @ The Chalk Face knows Schools Matter

By Timothy D. Slekar – By now the poverty does or doesn’t matter dichotomy is really starting to get old.  Anyone that truly cares about helping children from low socio-economic environments succeed in school knows that all children(even poor ones) can learn.  It’s absolutely ridiculous when education reformers insist that those of us “resisting” are more

Student “Takes Aim” at Common Core Math – @ The Chalk Face knows Schools Matter

by Kris Nielsen – Somebody has had just about enough of the developmentally inappropriate, overbearing, confusing, and time-consuming program that Pearson thinks is going to help him grow into a successful adult. Enjoy this student’s videography: Click here to view the video via Student “Takes Aim” at Common Core Math – @ The Chalk Face more

Charter schools flout open records law, state official tells Senate panel | Pittsburgh Tribune Review

by Brad Bumsted – Harrisburg — Taxpayer-funded charter schools are a “cancer” on the state’s Right to Know law, because they routinely ignore citizens’ requests for records, the state’s open records director said Monday. In response to a question at a Senate hearing, Terry Mutchler said charter schools are the No. 1 violator of the more

Students left looking for a school after Academy of Flint loses charter | Michigan Live

by Dominic Adams – Mt. Morris Township – Nine months ago, officials at the Academy of Flint were told by Central Michigan University that the school’s charter would not be renewed. But rather than tell parents that their children were facing the possibility of losing their school, Academy of Flint officials kept the news to themselves. more

Schooling in the Ownership Society: UNO charter hustlers have Wall Streeters’ undies in a twist

by Mike Klonsky – As the largest charter-school operator in Illinois, the United Neighborhood Organization depends largely on City Hall and Springfield. It also borrows money — from banks and on Wall Street — to pay its bills. Steven Levy, an executive with Prudential Financial in Newark, N.J., has been all over UNO boss Juan more

Controversy surrounds Pennsylvania Common Core Standards | Harrisburg Patriot-News

by Jan Murphy – Northern Lebanon Superintendent Don Bell questions the extent to which students, parents and educators were involved in the standards development process and cast doubt about this initiative being the right direction for education to take. “I am worried about the colossal amount of money wasted if conformity to Common Core is more

If You Are a Graduate of Teachers College, Read This Petition | Diane Ravitch’s blog

by Diane Ravitch – If you are a graduate of Teachers College, Columbia University, please read this petition and consider signing it. Click here to read and sign the petition via If You Are a Graduate of Teachers College, Read This Petition | Diane Ravitch’s blog.

Jersey Jazzman: What’s REALLY Happening In Newark’s Schools?

by Jersey Jazzman – I’ve already written about Tom Moran’s pig-headed view of Newark’s charter schools, as demonstrated in his op-ed piece in Sunday’s Star-Ledger. Let me address something else from the article: This council has a long history of crazy behavior. It pays itself the highest council salaries in the state, and each member more

“Ability Grouping In Schools — Part Two”

Ability Grouping In Schools — Part Two is my newest post at Education Week Teacher.
It includes responses from Carol Burris, New York’s 2013 High School Principal Of The Year, and Tammy Heflebower, Vice-President of the Marzano Research Laboratory.

revisiting some thoughts on education

that were part of this diary, posted in late 2006, intended to start a discussion on rethinking American education.
As I reread them this evening, it saddens me to think how relevant still the questions and challenges I raised remain, now more than 6 years later.
I thought about taking the words and reworking them, but decided to offer them exactly as I did then, typos and all.
As I continue the process of looking for a situation that will put me back into the classroom - having taught a sample lesson at one school this afternoon and meeting with the administration of another to discuss a possibly very exciting opportunity - I find it relevant to look back at how I have been concerned about educational policy, 

Backlash against Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s political advocacy grows

The backlash against Mark Zuckerberg’s political advocacy group is gathering steam with a campaign to pick off many of its high-profile Silicon Valley backers. Activists on Monday identified the next batch of figures they hope will defect following the departure of Elon Musk and David Sacks,...

Uh oh, 29 pages of math practice homework for a first grader? Really? #stopcommoncore

Your common core, at work. Test prep… two years prior to an official tested grade. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.