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Sunday, September 23, 2018

Florida charter schools are “wasteful” and prone to corruption - enrique baloyra YouTube

DeSantis: Let them each choice - YouTube

 Florida charter schools are “wasteful” and prone to corruption 

This week GOP nominee for Florida governor Ron DeSantis unveiled his education plan. Not much of a plan, really, just recycling a bunch of old talking points.
Predictably, the former congressman promised to help poor kids by expanding school choice. But on the same day Integrity Florida published its latest report adding to the growing body of evidence that shows Florida charter schools are “wasteful” and prone to corruption.
The report goes on to say, “Some public officials who decide education policy and their families are profiting personally from ownership and employment with the charter school industry…”
It bears repeating here that school vouchers don’t really help a lot of poor kids. They predominantly help families that already send their kids to private school pay tuition. And there’s little to no oversight. So uncertified teachers are free to teach that the Bible is the literal truth using taxpayer dollars.
One of DeSantis’ top priorities is to “cut bureaucratic waste and administrative inefficiency” by ensuring that at least 80% of K-12 spending be “used in the classroom.” But administrative costs in Florida schools already run around 6%. So, the plan seems like another giveaway to the corporations making bank off the charter school scam.
DeSantis promises to do away with Common Core, but Florida doesn’t follow Common Core.
And, as if to really drive home how little he understands about education policy, DeSantis credits the last twenty years of corporate takeover as a victory over the previous “cookie-cutter approach to educating our diverse youth…”
“[But] Florida politicians are the ones who have stifled innovation in education by needlessly meddling in curriculum and turning schools into testing assembly lines. Teachers have little discretion in the classroom, and creativity is discouraged because their jobs are dependent on tests that are created and graded by faceless corporations […]”
If DeSantis really wanted to help poor kids in Florida, he and his corporatist buddies in Congress would’ve renewed the Children’s Health Insurance Program last year, instead of holding it hostage so that they could pass that $multi-trillion tax cut for the wealthiest Americans.
He’d promise to accept the Medicaid expansion to help 100s of thousands of Florida parents afford healthcare.
And he’d quit with those race-baiting tactics that have proven so effective in previous elections. Poor and minority kids have suffered enough already at the hands of his party. And the whole country is watching now.

DeSantis: Let them each choice - YouTube

Support Andrew Gillum for Florida Governor -

Poverty vs Test Scores: Ranking all Ohio school districts income adjusted for their test scores on report cards

Ranking all Ohio school districts (income adjusted) for their test scores on report cards; Steubenville is No. 1 |

Ranking all Ohio school districts (income adjusted) for their test scores on report cards; Steubenville is No. 1

CLEVELAND, Ohio - The 2018 Ohio school report cards released last week again produced a predictable result. Generally, higher income districts scored better than lower income districts.
That especially showed up in a look at the rankings for Performance Index, which is a guide for how well students in each district tested.
But, of course there are outliers.
Steubenville students, for example did a great job. Same goes for those in Girard, Hicksville and Columbiana. More than any other districts in Ohio, students there ranked significantly better for the Performance Index than their district ranking for income.
Scroll below to see how much higher, or lower, each school district ranked for Performance Index in the 2018 report card than its ranking for median federal adjusted gross income for all households in each district.
But first a little about income and grades.

Grades trend with incomes

Jersey Jazzman: Charter Schools Do Not Promote Diversity

Jersey Jazzman: Charter Schools Do Not Promote Diversity

Charter Schools Do Not Promote Diversity

Image result for Charter Schools Do Not Promote Diversity
Peter Greene had a useful post the other day about how to spot bad education research. One sure sign is cherry-picking: focusing on a few observations – or even just one – and then suggesting these few are representative of the whole. This tactic is a favorite among charter school cheerleaders, who will extoll X's high test scores and Y's high special education rates – without mentioning X's special education rates and Y's test scores.

Here's a recent example from New Jersey:

Earlier this month, the New Jersey Charter School Association (NJCSA) filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit: Latino Action Network v. State of New Jersey. The lawsuit contends New Jersey has some of the most segregated public schools in the nation (it does), and proposes a series of remedies. One notable feature of the lawsuit is that it is critical of charter schools:

Because charter schools are thus required to give priority in enrollment to students who reside in their respective districts, and because they tend to be located predominantly in intensely segregated urban school districts, New Jersey’s charter schools exhibit a degree of intense racial and socioeconomic segregation comparable to or even worse than that of the most intensely segregated urban public schools. Indeed, 73% of the state’s 88 charter schools have less than 10% White students and 81.5% of charter school students attend schools characterized by extreme levels of segregation, mostly because almost all the students are Black and Latino. [emphasis mine]
As you can imagine, this didn't sit well with the NJCSA:

On Thursday, September 6, the New Jersey Charter Schools Association asked a state court judge for permission to intervene into the historic school desegregation case [Latino Action Network v. State of New Jersey] on behalf of its member schools. Charter schools are part of the desegregation solution—they are not the problem. In fact, an important tool to combat school segregation is empowering parents with meaningful public school choice.While we share the values and goals of diverse, high-performing schools that serve a broad range of students, we are intervening to address baseless attacks on charter schools and ensure that our students and families have a seat at the table. [emphasis mine]
Now that is a provocative claim: NJCSA is stating not just that New Jersey charters aren't making school segregation worse, they are actually contributing to the desegregation the Continue reading: Jersey Jazzman: Charter Schools Do Not Promote Diversity

Image result for schools are more segregated today than in the 1950s
Image result for schools are more segregated today than in the 1950s

Who is Behind the Leaders in Education PAC? | deutsch29

Who is Behind the Leaders in Education PAC? | deutsch29
Who is Behind the Leaders in Education PAC?

In preparing for my presentation on “dark money” in purchasing elections for promoting ed reform (i.e., charters, vouchers), a presentation for the Fifth Annual Network for Public Education (NPE) conference in Indianapolis, IN, on October 20 – 21, 2018, I have been reviewing some campaign finance forms.
In reviewing 2015 relection contributions to Louisiana state ed board (BESE) member and Teach for America exec director, Kira Orange-Jones, I noticed on her February 2016 filing that a Washington, DC PAC named “Leaders in Education,” donated a total of $10,000. (Another out-of-state $10K came from former NY mayor, Michael Bloomberg.)
Of course, I wanted to know who was lurking behind that PAC.
The site, Open Secrets, proved useful for the search. I like Open Secrets because it links to the original Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings for the PAC in question.
First, for some background:
Leaders in Education PAC is associated with the TFA-created lobbying nonprofit founded in 2014Leadership for Educational Equity (LEE). (Associated 501c3: LEE Foundation.)
2018 LEE Board members include Walton grandson, Steuart Walton; former NYC mayor, Michael Bloomberg‘s daughter, Emma Bloomberg; TFA CEO Elisa Villanueva Beard, and Silicon Valley venture capitalist, Arthur Rock.
According to the LEE site, LEE membership is free to all TFAers. And why not? The purpose of TFA and its related orgs is to catapult those who taught for five minutes into positions of power and authority over the American classroom.
Such catapulting requires loads of money– which brings us to those financially-loaded, Leaders in Education PAC donors:
The PAC is primarily funded by members of the Walton family (note that Carrie Continue reading: Who is Behind the Leaders in Education PAC? | deutsch29

Thirteen Things I learned While Blogging for Education Week - Teacher in a Strange Land - Education Week Teacher

Thirteen Things I learned While Blogging for Education Week - Teacher in a Strange Land - Education Week Teacher

Thirteen Things I learned While Blogging for Education Week

This is the 500th blog I've written as the Teacher in a Strange Land, for Education Week Teacher. As it turns out, it's also my final blog for EdWeek. I'm leaving because it's been nearly nine years since I started, and because I want to write, especially in this political cycle, about other things in addition to education.
I have to note that Education Week Teacher has let me write about anything I wanted, year after year. They've been diligent about promoting my blogs. They've fixed a lot of my wonky blog titles. Best of all, they've paid me to write--something most teacher bloggers only dream about. I genuinely appreciate the opportunity and hope that there are always outspoken teacher bloggers writing for Teacher.
Image result for Nancy Flanagan teacher
Thanks, Education Week. It was a great gig, but it's time for the Teacher in a Strange Land to ramble on. Look for the same name in a new site.
In the meantime, here are 13 things I learned in the past nine years of observing and writing about Ed World:
1. The largest (and nicest) part of my audience has always been teachers. I've had long, fruitful dialogues with teachers, including those who didn't agree with what I wrote. Parents also read the blog and often express strong opinions. I've almost never had a comment or exchange with a school administrator, however. Probably this is because the blog is hosted by Education Week's Teacher division, and school leaders are most interested in policy and management. Their jobs and reputations depend on different issues and metrics than the issues that most concern teachers. Closing that gap between teachers' and school leaders' commitments and enthusiasms would, in my opinion, lay a greater foundation for education that works for all kids.
2. Any blog with a number in the title will draw more traffic. Doesn't matter what the topic is--or even the size of the number. Two Reasons to Talk Back to Your Principal? Thirty-seven Things Your Legislator Needs to Know about Your Classroom? Somebody wants to know. Because numbers.
3. Writing a blog speculating about why 80% of the K-12 teacher workforce is female, but only about quarter of the best-known and most-followed education bloggers and thought leaders are women will make people angry. And when I say people, I mean men.
4. Until lately, what teachers were most interested in, blog-wise, was pragmatic advice and ideas about practice. My most-read blogs were about things like parent-teacher conferences, five paragraph essays or back-to-school tips. Lately, however, my readership on education policy and political-themed commentary has spiked upward. Can't imagine why.
5. Of all the topics I've addressed, the one that's consistently drawn the most heat and long, link-laden commentary is education for the gifted. Most of the ire and arguments boil down to parent anger over the fact that public schools seldom have enough resources to treat very bright children differently from their peers--and the trend toward public education spending for all groups has gone in the wrong direction.
And since this is the last chance I'll get to say this here... I still believe the best education option for gifted children is a sharp, caring teacher (or three). I subscribe to the idea that 'gifted' is a Continue reading: Thirteen Things I learned While Blogging for Education Week - Teacher in a Strange Land - Education Week Teacher