Friday, May 31, 2019

MDCPS Board Member Dr. Larry Feldman at Homestead prison camp - YouTube

MDCPS Board Member Dr. Larry Feldman at Homestead prison camp - YouTube

MDCPS Board Member Dr. Larry Feldman at Homestead prison camp



This morning activists attempted to deliver letters written by students to the children imprisoned unjustly in Homestead.
Dr. Feldman describes the school board's constitutional responsibilities to the children inside.


MDCPS Board Member Dr. Larry Feldman at Homestead prison camp - YouTube

CURMUDGUCATION: Jeb Bush: Frying Reform Baloney for Michigan

CURMUDGUCATION: Jeb Bush: Frying Reform Baloney for Michigan

Jeb Bush: Frying Reform Baloney for Michigan


The Detroit News just ran a Jeb Bush fluff piece chock full of reformy baloney (reformaloney?) and an embarrassing lack of those fact thingies.

It's helpful to know that the writer is Ingrid Jacques, deputy editorial page editor, and a graduate of Hillsdale College, the noted far-right Libertarian college with close ties to the DeVos family and the Trump administration (you may remember them as the school that Senator Pat Toomey tried to givea big fat tax exemption gift).


There he is, going big with the passion.
The piece was written on the occasion of Bush coming to Michigan to talk at the Detroit Chamber's Mackinac Policy Conference, one more group of business whizzes who fancy themselves rightful managers of public education while hanging out with politicians who are really interested in their deep pockets ideas, and the piece opens by evoking the dynamic Jeb we all know and love for whom nobody voted in the last Presidential cycle. What does it take to improve schools?

“The attitude should be big and bold or go home and let someone else try,” says the former Florida governor. “If it ruffles a few feathers or gets people uncomfortable, so be it. There should be a little more passion behind more provocative change. You can argue about how bad things are or you can say things have to get better.  That's where convergence could really be."

Big and bold or go home. Passion. Because that's the Jeb we all met during the GOP primaries. But beyond the disconnect of Jeb! being big, bold and passionate, this is reformaloney. It's not nearly as important to be big and bold as it is to be right, and when it comes to education, Bush has rarely been either. There is nothing big and bold about draining public education funds to feed private business operations, nor is there anything passionate about letting those private edu-businesses suck up taxpayer dollars with little oversight. Big and bold would have been, for instance, saying to CONTINUE READING: 
CURMUDGUCATION: Jeb Bush: Frying Reform Baloney for Michigan




Charter schools were supposed to save public education. Why did people turn on them? - The Washington Post

Charter schools were supposed to save public education. Why did people turn on them? - The Washington Post

School’s out
Charters were supposed to save public education. Why are Americans turning against them?


The charter school movement is in trouble. In late December, the editorial board of the Chicago Sun-Times observed that the charter movement in the Windy City was “in hot water and likely to get hotter.” Among more than a dozen aspirants for mayor, “only a handful” expressed any support for charter schools, and the last two standing for the April 2 runoff election both said they wanted to haltcharter school expansion. In February, New York City’s elected parent representatives — the Community and Citywide Education Councils — issued a unanimous statement in which they criticized charters for operating “free from public oversight” and for draining “substantial” resources from district schools. A month later, Mayor Bill de Blasio tolda parent forum that in the “not-too-distant future” his administration would seek to curtail the marketing efforts of the city’s charters, which currently rely on New York City Department of Education mailing lists.

After a six-day strike in January, Los Angeles teachers forced the city’s Board of Education to seek a state moratorium on new L.A. charters, an outcome that reverberated across California and then repeated itself in Oakland. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), who previously said he supported charters, responded by appointing a task force to investigate their financial impact on traditional public schools. Now the state legislature is advancing bills that would cap charter school growth and limit where they can open. Meanwhile, on the national level, Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren call the schools a problem.

The vanguard of this unrest is organized teachers, political progressives and public education activists. Yet public opinion, even if it is moving more slowly, is tilting in the same direction. According to the school-choice-favoring EdNext Poll, support for charters slipped noticeably in 2017. Though it rebounded a bit in 2018, it did so mainly among Republicans, with “only 36 percent of Democrats now supporting their formation” — a phenomenon likely due to the polarizing influence of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. The most recent polling on charters in Los Angeles County found that 75 percent of residents favor “improving the existing public schools” over pursuing “additional charter school options.” CONTINUE READING: Charter schools were supposed to save public education. Why did people turn on them? - The Washington Post

Schools Matter: What the KIPP Model Has Spawned

Schools Matter: What the KIPP Model Has Spawned

What the KIPP Model Has Spawned

If you know anything about schools based on the "No Excuses" KIPP model, you have probably heard the motto, "there are no excuses," "failure is not an option," success at any cost," and "KIPP is a family", etc.

If you know more about these schools inspired by the "success" of KIPP, you may have heard something about student intimidation, humiliation, extreme disciplinary measures, ostracism, isolation.

And if you have read my book based on my research and two dozen interviews with former KIPP teachers who have decided to share their horror stories about working there, then you know about documented cases of abuse, where children were forced to sit outside in the heat or the cold for hours, students who forced to bark like dogs, wear garbage cans on their heads, stand in front of the student body and apologize for having to use the bathroom at the wrong time.

You will be familiar with school leaders who pound tables, load children into U-Haul trailers, and even throw TVs through plate glass windows out of anger.

You will know something, too, of how students are prepped for VIB days (Visitors in Building) and how potential troublemakers have been corralled and taken the basement where they can't be seen by influential visitors.

You will have read about the Ivy League banners that festoon hallways of elementary schools, and you will know that KIPP Model schools are laser focused on test results that will get children into college.  You will CONTINUE READING: 
Schools Matter: What the KIPP Model Has Spawned


Proposal to cap charter school growth all but dies in California Assembly - SFGate

Proposal to cap charter school growth all but dies in California Assembly - SFGate

Proposal to cap charter school growth all but dies in California Assembly

SACRAMENTO — A proposal to cap the number of California charter schools went into a deep freeze in the state Assembly on Thursday, a sign of the difficult fight teachers unions face as they push to stop the growth of the alternatives to traditional public schools.
AB1506 would have created a statewide ceiling on charter schools at the number in operation as of Jan. 1, 2020.
The bill was part of an effort by the California Teachers Association and some Democrats to overhaul the state’s 1992 charter schools law. Critics say the law has drained funding from traditional public schools.
The measure all but died Thursday when the bill’s author, Assemblyman Kevin McCarty, D-Sacramento, held it on the final day his chamber could have voted.
McCarty, however, suggested the fight isn’t over. In a statement released Thursday evening, he said the bill “will be addressed later in the 2019-20 legislative session,” without clarifying when it could come up.
Opponents of AB1506 said it would harm families that rely on charters as an alternative to failing school districts, particularly in communities with large numbers of students of color.
They say the teachers union has made charters a scapegoat for the failures of districts.
“Charter public school families’ voices were heard loud and clear by Sacramento politicians: We cannot and will not accept legislation that limits access to great public schools,” Myrna Castrejón, president of the California Charter Schools Association, said in a statement.
The California Teachers Association did not respond to a request for comment.
Another bill backed by the teachers union, to create a two-year moratorium on the approval of new charter schools statewide, died in the Legislature this week. SB756 was shelved in the Senate.
The union did score a victory on a third bill, to give school districts more leverage to deny applications to open new charter schools if it would harm them financially.
That bill, AB1505, narrowly passed the Assembly as thousands of teachers and their supporters marched through the streets CONTINUE READING: 

NYC: Class Size Champion Strikes Again, in Court | Diane Ravitch's blog

NYC: Class Size Champion Strikes Again, in Court | Diane Ravitch's blog

NYC: Class Size Champion Strikes Again, in Court


Leonie Haimson is a force of nature. She and her! Student Privacy allies beat Bill Gates’ $100 Million inBloom data-collection project. She and her parent allies forced the NYC Department of Education to back down and keep open high-performing low-enrollment PS 25 in Brooklyn. Now she and her allies are going back to court to fight State Commissioner MaryEllen Elia over the matter of class size in NYC. 
Give up, MaryEllen!
Haimson sends out the alert: Game on!
On Thursday May 23, 2019 the Education Law Center filed an appeal on behalf of nine NYC parents, Class Size Matters and the Alliance for Quality Education, urging the Appellate court to order the Department of Education to reduce class size in all grades as the Contracts for Excellence law requires. Our original lawsuit, Agostini vs. Eliawas filed in April 2018 when the State Education Commissioner refused to take action and enforce the law.   
In December 2018, Acting Supreme Court Judge Henry Zwack ruled against us in a brief decision that engaged with neither the law nor the facts of the case, and merely claimed that this was a matter for the Commissioner to decide.  She in turn had argued that any class size obligations on the part of the DOE had expired years ago. Our appeal demonstrates how that view is false — and if the Legislature wanted to eliminate DOE’s legal obligation to lower class size, they would have changed the law.  Oral arguments in the case will likely occur late this summer.
The press release from ELC is here and below. — Leonie Haimson 
LAWSUIT TO ENFORCE MANDATE TO REDUCE CLASS SIZE IN NEW YORK CITY SCHOOLS MOVES FORWARD
The plaintiffs in a legal action to enforce a mandate to reduce class size in New York City public schools filed their brief on May 23 in an Albany appellate court. The lawsuit began in June 2017 as an administrative petition demanding that the State Commissioner of Education, MaryEllen Elia, order the NYC Schools Chancellor, the New York City Department of Education, and the New York City Board of Education to comply with the law. When the Commissioner dismissed the petition, the plaintiffs brought the case to court.
The plaintiffs in the case are nine New York City public school parents, as well as Class Size Matters and the Alliance for Quality Education, two prominent New York public school advocacy organizations. Education Law Center Senior Attorney Wendy Lecker is representing the plaintiffs.
Under a state law known as the Contract for Excellence, or “C4E,” the NYC Chancellor and the Department and Board of Education are required to develop a five-year plan to reduce class size to target averages in three grade spans: K-3, 4-8, and 9-12. After the law was enacted in 2007, New York City developed a plan which was approved by the Commissioner in 2007.
The City never fulfilled the 2007 plan within five years, or by 2012. Nor has the City implemented the 2007 plan or any other plan that complies with the C4E law. As a result, class sizes now are as large or even larger than they were in 2007. Between 2007-2016, for example, the number of students in classes of 30 or more in grades 1-3 increased by 4,000% to over 40,000.
In dismissing the Petition in 2017, the Commissioner ruled that since the 2007 plan “concluded” in 2012, or five years after it was approved, the petition was moot even though the City never implemented the plan. The plaintiffs challenged the Commissioner’s decision in State Supreme Court, which “deferred” to the Commissioner’s interpretation of the term “within five years” in the C4E law.
The plaintiffs have now appealed to the Appellate Division. They argue that the Commissioner misinterpreted the C4E law. The five-year endpoint in the law was the deadline the Legislature imposed to accomplish class size reduction. It was not the date at which the City’s legal obligation would magically disappear. Moreover, the lower court wrongly deferred to the Commissioner’s interpretation of the C4E law.
“The NYC Department of Education has violated the Contract for Excellence Law for over a decade because of its refusal to reduce class size,” said Leonie Haimson, Executive Director of Class Size Matters, a plaintiff in the lawsuit. “As a result, more than 336,000 students were crammed into classes of thirty or more this fall. Our thanks to the Education Law Center for representing Class Size Matters and nine NYC parent plaintiffs in this important appeal. If the Appellate Court decides on the basis of the law and the facts, it will require that NYC students finally receive their right to a sound basic education with the smaller classes they need and deserve.”
“Class size is an important factor in determining whether students have the opportunity to succeed in school. Ensuring that every student has a chance to succeed is our moral duty. Following the law shouldn’t be a choice. We hope the court ensures that the students of New York receive their constitutionally granted right to ‘a sound basic education,'” said Marina Marcou-O’Malley, Operations and Policy Director for the Alliance for Quality Education.
Oral argument in the appeal will likely take place in the late summer.
Education Law Center Press Contact:
Sharon Krengel
Policy and Outreach Director
973-624-1815, x 24
NYC: Class Size Champion Strikes Again, in Court | Diane Ravitch's blog

Teachers Paying for Their Own Substitutes? Believe it or Not, It Happens.

Teachers Paying for Their Own Substitutes? Believe it or Not, It Happens.

Teachers Paying for Their Own Substitutes? Believe it or Not, It Happens.


A San Francisco second-grade teacher who, due to state law, must pay the cost of a substitute educator while she seeks treatment for breast cancer has made national headlines after parents at her school started an online GoFundMe campaign to cover her costs.
“Parents were outraged and incredulous—like, this can’t be. There must be some kind of mistake!” one parent told the San Francisco Chronicle.
But the situation, which has outraged parents and captured the attention of state lawmakers, isn’t just about this teacher or even this decades-old state law, which resembles policies in a handful of other districts. It reveals bigger issues: a public education system that is starved for state funds and resources, and too often relies on educators to sacrifice their own time, money, and well-being to make it work, union leaders say.
What it really is, is a reflection of how financially strapped the system has been for so long,” California Teachers Association President Eric Heins told The Washington Post. “It is outrageous when you think about someone suffering from a catastrophic illness that they actually have to deal with these kinds of issues while already facing extra financial pressure.”
What’s happening with this particular educator, says Heins, is just one example of the pressures burdening public-school educators across the state and nation.
Over the past decade, the national average teacher salary has decreased 4.5 percent, adjusting for inflation, according to NEA’s Ranking & Estimates report. “Educators don’t do this work to get rich, they do this work because they believe in students,” says NEA President Lily Eskelsen García. “But their pay is not CONTINUE READING: Teachers Paying for Their Own Substitutes? Believe it or Not, It Happens.

LAUSD Libraries are Safe (For Now)

LAUSD Libraries are Safe (For Now)

LAUSD Libraries are Safe (For Now)



– LA Superintendent Austin Beutner
In the days leading up to the strike by Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) teachers, Board Member Nick Melvoin told parents that the teachers just wanted to “get it out of the system for a day or two” and then they would “settle on pretty much same terms that they started with.” What Melvoin did not anticipate was that hundreds of thousands of parents would keep their students out of the classroom and that many would walk the rain-soaked picket lines in solidarity with their teachers. As a result, the teachers won many of their demands that were centered on improving educational outcomes for the children of Los Angeles.
One of the outcomes of the strike is that in coming years funding will be provided to ensure that libraries will be open in all secondary schools within the LAUSD and will be staffed with a librarian. Elementary schools were not included in the agreement because they are staffed with library aides who are represented by a different union. LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner was, therefore, able to hatch a CONTINUE READING: LAUSD Libraries are Safe (For Now)

Capitalism Camp for Kids (Brendan O’Connor) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

Capitalism Camp for Kids (Brendan O’Connor) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

Capitalism Camp for Kids (Brendan O’Connor)

Brendan O’Connor is a free-lance journalist. This article appeared in the New York Times Online May 22, 2019. *
At first, I was startled by this article. Now, I am not naive. I have many miles on my speedometer. Sure, I had heard of ambitious (and anxious) parents registering new-born infants in choice preschools. As a teacher and superintendent I saw up close, parents from all social classes who wanted special privileges for their children. So the recent scandal over wealthy parents buying their sons and daughters into top universities hardly surprised me. The dog-eat-dog struggle to get an edge for one’s child among so many other middle-income and affluent families elbowing one another to get to a higher rung on the credentials ladder is, I feel, the nightmarish version of the American Dream.
And then this article appeared on my screen on well-heeled families sending their kids to camp to learn the nuts-and-bolts of becoming an entrepreneur and fully apprised of how capitalism works on a daily basis.There are, of course, many districts that have established classes on financial awareness and, in nearly all districts, economics, both macro- and micro-, are taught. But these summer camps are another step, again led by educated elite who seek that precious edge over other competitive parents, toward the 1 percent of Americans. 
I don’t know about bolts, but I thought this was “nuts.”  Yet it so fits into the mystique that business culture and markets as solutions to all problems has had on U.S. schools for nearly four decades. So I present it to my viewers to see what they think.

Summer camp: It’s not just for campfires, crushes on counselors and crying alone in a bunk bed. Summer camp is also for capitalism.
Or at least it is for a growing number of children whose parents enroll them in workshops and sleep-away trips that focus on stimulating the entrepreneurial CONTINUE READING: Capitalism Camp for Kids (Brendan O’Connor) | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice



NYC Educator: What Are the Techniques and Strategies for English Language Learners?

NYC Educator: What Are the Techniques and Strategies for English Language Learners?

What Are the Techniques and Strategies for English Language Learners?

I hear a lot of talk about that, particularly from people who are trying to rationalize Part 154. In case I haven't explained it 500 times, CR Part 154 says that we no longer need to teach English to English Language Learners. So we take away 33-100% of their direct English instruction, and they just pick it up in the other classes, the ones they were taking anyway.

You see, they will train the subject teacher in the techniques and strategies for dealing with ELLs. Either that, or at least two days a week a certified ESL teacher will appear, and use the techniques and strategies. So if it takes a native English speaker 45 minutes to study Chapter Four of To Kill a Mockingbird, we can teach ELLs that same chapter in those same 45 minutes. We will do that by incorporating techniques and strategies.

Will it waste the time of the native English speakers if we use those techniques and strategies? After all, we hadn't used them before. Will they lose valuable Chapter Four time? The answer is no, they absolutely will not. I've been teaching ESL for about thirty years, and I'm going to let you in on the top techniques and strategies for teaching ELLs before you finish this blog.

You don't need to go to school and take the credits. I mean, it would be great if you'd learn about language acquisition. Clearly neither MaryEllen Elia nor any of the Regents have bothered to study that. If they had, they'd know that older learners pick up language more slowly than older learners, and they'd know that a one-size-fits-all approach they use is baseless and without merit. In fact, they'd know that their revision of Part 154 actively precludes the most effective techniques and strategies for teaching ELLs.

What are they, you ask? Thank you for that question. They are:

1. Be kind, and
2. Give them time.

People from other countries can feel pretty lost here. We have customs with which they're unfamiliar, and we speak this funny language they don't understand. Our food is different from theirs. Our homes look different from theirs. A lot of my students have left family behind, grandmothers, grandfathers, uncles, aunts, sometimes brothers, sisters, CONTINUE READING: 
NYC Educator: What Are the Techniques and Strategies for English Language Learners?


Joe Biden’s Plan for Education: Democrats Must Do Better | Real Learning CT

Joe Biden’s Plan for Education: Democrats Must Do Better | Real Learning CT

Joe Biden’s Plan for Education: Democrats Must Do Better

What  a disappointment Joe Biden’s education plan is.
Democrats must do better.
” Joe’s Plan for Educators, Students, and our Future” does not mention at all the important issues before us in American education. No mention of the funding of privately managed, taxpayer funded, and publicly unaccountable charter schools. No mention of the NAACP call for a moratorium on adding new charter schools because of their racial inequities and their lack of accountability. No mention of standardized testing and the damage that testing does to student learning and the inaccuracy of standardized testing as the dominant way to assess student achievement and potential. No mention of the Common Core and how those standards have done nothing to improve student achievement and how they have removed meaningful and necessary learning from the curriculum of the nation’s schools. Unfortunately, Joe Biden’s plan is poorly written, full of platitudes, and lacks substance.
Democrats must do better.
Joe Biden’s plan calls for actions that would be incredibly damaging to children in K-12 schools in this country.
Joe Biden’s Call to Action #1:
Joe Biden’s plan called for: “more innovative approaches to recruiting CONTINUE READING: Joe Biden’s Plan for Education: Democrats Must Do Better | Real Learning CT

Thursday, May 30, 2019

An Urban Teacher's Education: A Critique of Standards-Based Grading

An Urban Teacher's Education: A Critique of Standards-Based Grading

A Critique of Standards-Based Grading

It first happened to me about ten years ago. I was beginning my third year of teaching in a new school in Washington, DC. Social studies teachers were sitting at a department meeting, and the assistant principal assigned as our department head was explaining to us why standards-based grading was going to close the achievement gap.

"This is all very interesting," I said, "and I'm happy to get on board, but besides standards-based grading, what other legitimate grading practices are out there?"

"Well, whatever they are, we don't practice them here. Standards are about raising expectations, and that's what we're about." His response seemed designed to discourage me from inquiring further. In other words, my principal didn't seem to know.

I spent that year, and many of the years since that meeting, working furiously to become the best standards-based grader I could possibly be. That was not easy, as most teachers know that standards-based grading can be a pretty confusing endeavor. It comes with all sorts of differences in philosophy and application. I've had principals attempt to mandate everything from a no zero policy to a no homework policy to a "you can give homework, you just can't grade it" policy. Then there are CONTINUE READING: An Urban Teacher's Education: A Critique of Standards-Based Grading


CAN TV – The Future of Chicago Public Schools

CAN TV – The Future of Chicago Public Schools

The Future of Chicago Public Schools



Panelists present their vision and roadmaps for Chicago Public Schools in order to achieve greater racial justice in the city’s public education system and society at large at this event hosted by Institute for Research on Race and Public Policy (IRRPP). This program was recorded by Chicago Access Network Television (CAN TV).

CURMUDGUCATION: OH: Takeover Battle Comes To Senate

CURMUDGUCATION: OH: Takeover Battle Comes To Senate

OH: Takeover Battle Comes To Senate
Image result for takeover bill, HB 70.

Our story so far: The Ohio House has passed a bill scrapping Ohio's disastrous takeover bill, HB 70. The new language was incorporated into the budget (HB 166) and, having cleared the House, must go to the Senate, where education committee chair Peggy Lehner is not particularly sympathetic to public education. So Lehner and a committee of various "interested parties" put together their own proposal for offering "relief" from HB 70. It's another version of a state takeover, packed with $20 million in pork for "consultants."

Wednesday, May 29, was the Senate's day to hold a hearing about the issue, and all the players came out of the woodwork, some offering audacious and amazing words for or against the bill, with particular emphasis on Lorain, Ohio, a city and school system that has caused all sorts of problems by refusing to roll over and play dead.


Mark Ballard, hearing MVP
But we have lots of testimony to look at, all of which paints a picture of a direct head-to-head clash between pub lic education and those who would like to privatize it.  In fact, before we wade into this, let's start with some of the testimony from Lorain School Board President Mark Ballard, because this may win the Quote of the Day award:

A new law is being crafted, in secret, AGAIN - because you admit the last two laws were ineffective - all while Lorain is dealing with the negative consequences of those bills.

Now, if this new bill is approved, we will be required to collaborate with our CEO, even though he doesn’t believe in collaboration and refuses to meet with us.

And our end goal is to create a plan that is exactly...the... same...as what we already had in place before you gave us a CEO?

Please remember this: If the state of Ohio thinks it can continue to experiment with it’s poor CONTINUE READING: 
CURMUDGUCATION: OH: Takeover Battle Comes To Senate


2020 Vision: The Democratic Presidential Candidates on Education – Have You Heard

2020 Vision: The Democratic Presidential Candidates on Education – Have You Heard

2020 Vision: The Democratic Presidential Candidates on Education

 From Bernie Sanders on charter schools and segregation to Cory Booker stating, once again, that he is a believer in public education, to higher pay for teachers and free-er college for all (or some), the Democratic presidential candidates can’t stop talking about education. In the latest episode of Have You Heard, Jennifer and Jack go beyond the headlines to explore why public education may just be the hottest-button issue of this endless campaign season.

And if you like what you hear, please consider supporting us on Patreon.


Charter schools accused of stealing $50M from California

Charter schools accused of stealing $50M from California

Charter schools accused of stealing $50M from California

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A network of charter schools in California stole more than $50 million from the state by creating phantom institutions that enrolled unwitting students it found through other schools and youth programs, prosecutors said Wednesday.
A3 Education recruited small public school districts to sponsor the charter schools in exchange for oversight fees. Prosecutors say A3 enrolled about 40,000 students throughout the state, none of whom received any services.
The company that operated a network of 19 online-only schools is accused of paying sports leagues as little as $25 a student for information used for enrollment. School districts are funded by the state based on the number of students.
The students didn’t know how their names were being used, said San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan, calling them victims.
“These kids are being used for just a name and the ability to pull money using their name, and then the paperwork, a lot of is just manufactured,” Stephan said at a news conference.
Prosecutors identified Sean McManus, 46, and Jason Schrock, 44, as the ringleaders. They didn’t immediately return phone messages seeking comment. McManus is believed to be in Australia.
The 235-page indictment is another black eye for charters, at a perilous time for what was once a thriving sector, especially in California.
The California Charter Schools Association said it raised concerns about A3 more than a year ago with the state education department and urged an investigation.
“To be clear, there is no room for bad actors and irresponsible authorizers in California’s charter public school movement,” said Myrna Castrejón, the group’s president.
The Dehesa Elementary School District, which has only about 150 students east of San Diego, authorized several charter schools with oversight for 20,000 students, Stephan said. The $2 million in oversight fees collected one year was more than the district’s annual payroll.
Nancy Hauer, Dehesa’s superintendent, was among 11 people charged in the case. Other CONTINUE READING: Charter schools accused of stealing $50M from California

My New Book Was Just Announced! | Diane Ravitch's blog

My New Book Was Just Announced! | Diane Ravitch's blog

My New Book Was Just Announced!

I am very excited!
My new book was just announced!
It will be published on January 14, 2020, by Knopf, the most prestigious publisher in America. The editor is the brilliant Victoria Wilson, who is also an author, having written the definitive biography of Barbara Stanwyck.
In Slaying Goliath, you will read about the heroes of the Resistance, those who stood up to Big Money and defeated disruption in their schools, their communities, their cities, their states.
It is a book of inspiration and hope.
It shows how determined citizens—parents, students, teachers, everyone—can stand up for democracy, can stand up to the billionaires, and win.
Please consider pre-ordering your copy so you can be sure to get the first edition.
Amazon.com: Slaying Goliath: The Impassioned Fight to Defeat the Privatization Movement and Save America's Public Schools (9780525655374): Diane Ravitch: Gateway -



My New Book Was Just Announced! | Diane Ravitch's blog



Vote Woman | radical eyes for equity

Vote Woman | radical eyes for equity

Vote Woman


Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, I taught in the very conservative small town where I was born and attended school. This added a second layer to the moral imperative I felt as a calling to teach.
I recall to this day sitting in a first-year college English class and suddenly feeling out of place. There was something, or some things, I simply didn’t get.
Later I would have a word for my deficit—provincialism—and by the time I chose to be a high school English teacher, I felt compelled to provide my students with a worldview I had been denied.
Literature was a magical vehicle for that mission, and one recurring aspect of two works I taught nearly every year resonate heavily with me now.
In Advanced Placement Literature, we read and discussed Ernest Hemingway’s “Hills Like White Elephants” and William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying. Both works are solidly in the white male canon—works buoyed by New Criticism’s premium placed on craft—but both also have an important topic in common—examinations of abortion that address the experience without ever naming it directly.
The dark comedy of the Bundren’s pilgrimage to bury the matriarch, Addie, includes Dewey Dell, a teen, seeking an abortion as a subplot of Faulkner’s experimental classic. Hemingway’s short story is heralded as a narrative tour de force that depends on “[t]he American and the girl”  negotiating the CONTINUE READING: Vote Woman | radical eyes for equity