Latest News and Comment from Education

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

New Orleans’ Kennedy High School Grading Fiasco and Perforated Accountability | deutsch29

New Orleans’ Kennedy High School Grading Fiasco and Perforated Accountability | deutsch29

New Orleans’ Kennedy High School Grading Fiasco and Perforated Accountability

In all-charter New Orleans, New Beginnings Schools Foundation (NBSF) operates three charter schools in New Orleans, one of which is John F. Kennedy High School.
Kennedy is in the throes of an astounding fraud which resulted in almost 50 percent of its Class of 2019 being found to not have actually met state requirements for graduation. As a result, 87 out of 177 students who were allowed to participate in a graduation ceremony and who thought that they would receive diplomas discovered that they would not be receiving diplomas after all. In an effort to mop up this mess, the NBSF board offered post-haste summer school as an option that 53 of the affected seniors participated in. Mind you, this last-minute, thrown-together clean up effort put students who had been offered scholarships at a critical disadvantage because official, complete, state-approved high school transcripts were not available in May 2019, when the students supposedly/legitimately graduated.
It is now August 2019;  college/universty fall classes will soon begin, and the Kennedy seniors who participated in the alleged summer-school fixer still have not received copies of their transcripts. (For the extensive backstory and continuing saga, see here and here and here and here and here and here.)
On August 06, 2019, reported on Kennedy student and parent efforts to require release of student transcripts via court order.
What is of particular importance in this all-charter arrangement is the fact that the Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB) (ironically renamed NOLA Public Schools) has no direct authority over those “public” schools to require the schools to release the transcripts. In this “portfolio model,” the school board is left out of any authority over ensuring school data integrity; the charter school deals directly with the state in delivering data, which is part of the problem since CONTINUE READING: New Orleans’ Kennedy High School Grading Fiasco and Perforated Accountability | deutsch29

BACK TO SCHOOL: A parent’s guide to K-12 school success

Big Education Ape: BACK TO SCHOOL: A parent’s guide to K-12 school success

BACK TO SCHOOL: A parent’s guide to K-12 school success

A parent’s guide to K-12 school success
click on picture

What Schools Can Do To Support Parents

  • Recognize that all parents, regardless of income, education or cultural background, are involved in their children's learning and want their children to do well.
  • Design programs that will support families to guide their children's learning,from preschool through high school.
  • Develop the capacity of school staff and families to work together.
  • Link activities and programs for families to improving student learning.
  • Focus on developing trusting and respectful relationships among staff and families.
  • Build families' social and political connections.
  • Embrace a philosophy of partnership and be willing to share power.
  • Make sure that parents, school staff, and community members understand that the responsibility for children's educational development is a collaborative enterprise.
  • Build strong connections between schools and community organizations.
  • Include families in all strategies to reduce the achievement gap between white, middle-class students and low-income students and students of color.

Everyone Loves Lists
Below you will find a couple of lists of things parents can do to "help" at school. Not all schools offer some of the things on the list, you can ask your child's teacher or principal if your school offers these opportunities to support your child at school. 

• Read to students
• Serve as a guest speaker
• Donate newspapers for instructional programs
• Provide feedback on writing projects
• Assist in literacy programs
• Share science demonstrations
• Provide computer workshops
• Judge science fairs
• Share math in the workplace and the connection to school work
• Teach music
• Guide instrumental music practice sessions
• Provide choral music support
• Share dance skills and techniques
• Assist with choreography
• Design and coordinate murals
• Assist with set design
• Assist with costume design and production
• Provide apprentice programs
• Share photography expertise
• Support art and music appreciation
• Provide physical education coaching
• Assist with curriculum development to relate to life after high school
• Support student service learning and community service projects

• Share industry and personal expertise
• Provide computer support
• Sponsor school retreats
• Sponsor health/CPR certification classes and clinics
• Provide venues and food for professional development meetings

• Conduct job seeker workshops – from resume writing to mock interviews
• Offer work place problem-solving skills
• Serve as consultants to students operating school-based enterprises
• Provide educational fieldtrips to your facility for students and staff
• Provide on the job training, mentorships and job training for students
• Create and support job shadow days
• Provide “job skills” workshops and seminars
• Provide entrepreneurial seminars and workshops

• Display student art work in offices and lobbies
• Provide gift certificates, complimentary tickets, etc for academic success and improvement
• Establish attendance incentives
• Provide scholarships

• Volunteer as tutors in all areas of the curriculum
• Provide assembly programs stressing good health, safety and character-building
• Provide mentors and tutors for specific students
• Provide personnel to facilitate “dialogue” for various student groups
• Develop apprentice programs
• Serve as a mentor in physical education
• Support study skill development
• Provide supportive services and personalization of the educational experience for students and parents
• Serve as model for life-long recreation, health and wellness

• Sponsor uniforms and costumes, (Sports, Cheerleading, Drill Team, Theater, etc.)
• Donate audiovisual equipment and sound systems
• Donate books to the library
• Donate math, science, and language materials to laboratories
• Donate new curtains for school auditoriums
• Donate office supplies and surplus equipment
• Provide technical support to students and school staff
• Provide bus transportation or donate entrance fees for educational field trips
• Provide eyeglasses and doctor’s care for identified students
• Provide financial support to the PTSA or Booster Club
• Provide holiday enhancements including educational toys, books, or gift baskets
• Provide printing services for school newspapers, yearbooks, parent handbooks, and programs for special events
• Assist with organizing special school events
• Assist with organization/management  of  mandatory health exams
• Assist with Back-to-School programs
• Assist with year-end projects
• Provide shop tools
• Provide sewing machines
• Donate fabrics
• Serve  on a school Advisory Board
• Sponsor student “clubs” to develop leadership skills and promote interest in your industry
• Provide ongoing support for existing programs including Advancement Via Individual Determination –AVID, Math Engineering Science Achievement-MESA, College Ready
• Assist with field trips
• Commit to at least one hour per week for your employees to assist at schools

• Paint identified areas of the school
• Plant and maintain school gardens
• Assist in setting up family school work days
• Design and paint school murals
• Commission artists for school beautification designs

• Provide busses for family field trips
• Sponsor museum memberships
• Provide support to school site parent centers
• Provide tickets to museums, games, special events
• Provide leadership workshops
• Support English as a Second Language classes on the school site
• Provide parenting workshops
• Provide event planning workshops and professional development
• Fund parent newsletters
• Supply parent centers with desks, copiers, and supplies
• Donate food for parent meetings
• Provide direct event planning support
• Present at parent nights, speaking about the importance of education and the specific skills required in your industry

• Purchase new books or computers for school libraries
• Purchase shelving
• Volunteer as a librarian
• Assist students with research
• Provide support for or  matching funds for Wonder of Reading Libraries
• Sponsor school reading/literacy events

1. Share information with a student or class about a hobby.
2. Share information with a student or a class about a career.
3. Share information with students about a country you visited or lived in.
4. Tutor one or a small group of students in reading, math, or other area.
5. Help coach an athletic team.
6. Help check a student's written work.
7. Help put out a school or classroom newsletter (can also be done at home).
8. Help sew or paint a display.
9. Help build something (such as a loft in a classroom or new playground).
10. Help students work on a finalexhibition or project (can also be done at home or workplace).
11. Help answer the schools' phone.
12. Help plan a new playground for the school.*
13. Help plan a theme-based presentation for students.*
14. Help present a theme-based program for students.*
15. Demonstrate cooking from a particular country or culture to students.*
16. Share a particular expertise with faculty (such as use of computers, dealing with disruptive students).
17. Help students plan and build an outdoor garden or other project to beautify the outside of the school.
18. Help coach students competing in an academic competition (such as Odyssey of the Mind, Future Problem Solving, Math Masters).
19. Help bring senior citizens to school to watch a student production.
Help arrange learning opportunities in the community.

1. Help set up an internship or apprenticeship for a student at your business, organization, or agency.*
2. Host a one-day 'shadow study' for one or a small group of students about your career in business or some other organization.
3. Go on a local field trip with a teacher and a group of students.
4. Go on an extended (3-5 day) cross-country field trip with a teacher & students.*
5. Contact a particular local business or organization regarding possible cooperation.*
6. Help to create a natural area outside the building where students can learn.
Serve on an advisory or decision-making committee.
7. Serve on the school-wide site council.
8. Serve on a school committee that reports to the site council.
9. Serve on a district committee representing the school.
10. Serve as an officer in the school's PTA.
11. Help organize a parent organization for the school.
12. Help design a parent and or student survey for the school.
13. Help conduct and or tabulate results of a parent survey regarding the school.
Share information or advocate for the school.
14. Serve as a member of a 'telephone tree' to distribute information quickly.
15. Write a letter to legislators about the school.
16. Write a letter to school board members about the school.
17. Go to a school board meeting to advocate for the school.
18. Go to another school to provide information about this school.
19. Help design a brochure or booklet about the school.
20. Help translate information from the school into a language other than English.
21. Help translate at a parent-teacher conference for people who don't speak English well.
22. Provide transportation to a parent-teacher conference for a parent who needs a ride.
23. Write an article for publication in a magazine about the school's activities.
24. Help arrange for a political leader (mayor, city council, state representative, member of Congress) to visit the school.
Increase financial resources available to the school.
25. Help write a proposal that would bring new resources to the school.
26. Donate materials to the school.
27. Arrange for a business or other organization to donate materials to the school.
28. Help with a fundraiser for the school.
Help other parents develop their parenting skills.
29. Help teach a class for parents on ways they can be stronger parents.
30. Help produce a videotape for parents on ways they can be more effective parents.
31. Help write, publish, and distribute a list of parenting tips."

These lists are not copyrighted; readers may reproduce them for their own use.

On The Web a Wonderful Resource: 
Image result

Engaging Parents In School… | Going Beyond Parent "Involvement"

NANCY BAILEY: How Dwindling Human Interaction in Public Schools Hurts Us as a Society

How Dwindling Human Interaction in Public Schools Hurts Us as a Society

How Dwindling Human Interaction in Public Schools Hurts Us as a Society

Look at the picture above. Is the boy going to pick on the girl, or will he invite her to play with the other children?
In today’s impersonal school climate, how do students learn about those around them? When there’s no chance of bringing students together in school, how will children better understand their peers?
School administrators, teachers, parents, and staff must get to know who students are and better understand what kinds of difficulties they bring to school. This involves more human interaction at a time when classroom relationships are becoming increasingly distant and cold.
Florida lawmakers want to collect massive amounts of data on students to find and label those who appear to be threats. The ACLU and other civil rights organizations believe the data base called the Florida Schools Safety Portal is an alarming violation of student rights. This is the same state that wants to arm its teachers.
Many schools across the nation will be asking students personal questions to obtain CONTINUE READING: How Dwindling Human Interaction in Public Schools Hurts Us as a Society

New Media Literacy Resources Available Online - Year 2019 (CA Dept of Education)

New Media Literacy Resources Available Online - Year 2019 (CA Dept of Education)

State Superintendent Tony Thurmond Announces New Media Literacy Resources Available Online

SACRAMENTO—State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond today announced that the California Department of Education (CDE) has created a comprehensive online media literacy resource page for educators. The page provides access to free K–12 resources, instructional materials, lesson plans, and curriculum curated by a variety of recognized experts in the area of media literacy.
“These resources will assist educators in the classroom as they teach students how to access, use, evaluate, and integrate the information they read or hear online,” said Thurmond. “Students are bombarded by information from a wide range of sources. Being media-literate is a skill that can not only help them become critical thinkers, but can also help in all areas of their education and future as informed and active civically engaged citizens.”
Two key collaborators with the CDE on the media resource page are the California School Library Association (CSLA) and public broadcast station KQED. Instructional resources were chosen based on CSLA’s eight-step criteria, which included ensuring that media literacy content was aligned with the California Model School Library Standards. KQED provided access to comprehensive, free training resources and professional development for digital media educators through its online professional learning platform KQED Teach and its online Media Literacy Education Certification program.
The Media Literacy Law (Senate Bill 830) was passed in 2018 by former Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. It was introduced by Senator Bill Dodd (D-Napa), who was inspired by a Stanford University study that found 82 percent of middle school students struggled to distinguish between advertisements and news stories.
The CDE will continue to collaborate with the CSLA and KQED to review new resources as they are developed. For more information, visit the CDE Media Literacy Resources web page.
# # # #
Tony Thurmond — State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Communications Division, Room 5602, 916-319-0818, Fax 916-319-0100
New Media Literacy Resources Available Online - Year 2019 (CA Dept of Education)

CURMUDGUCATION: What Can We Learn From An Experimental High Tech Wunderschool Failure?

CURMUDGUCATION: What Can We Learn From An Experimental High Tech Wunderschool Failure?

What Can We Learn From An Experimental High Tech Wunderschool Failure?

Max Ventilla launched AltSchool quietly enough in 2013, but within two years it was a hot Silicon Valley startup. In 2015, $100 million of investment dollars from major education reform players like Mark Zuckerberg and the Emerson Collective spurred an impressive wave of press. In just 24 hours the Silicon Valley Wunderschool had been covered by Kevin Carey in the Pacific StandardNatasha Singer in the New York Times, and Issie Lapowski at And USA Today and techcrunch andForbes.

AltSchool would be a proof of concept for the most ideal version of personalized learning, centered on teachers who would be backed up by tech and tech engineers, and backed by, ultimately, about $174 million. Ventilla envisioned a chain of profitable private schools setting a new standard for high-tech personalization. But click over to the AltSchool website today and all you will find is a push for something called Altitude Learning. Ventilla has sold off the schools themselves and created a new venture that will focus on selling the tech software that AltSchool developed. The headlines are not nearly as glowing as they were four years ago. "AltSchool Gives Up On Schools" and "AltSchool's Out...Calls It Quits" and, most brutally, "How An Education Startup Wasted Almost $200 Million."
So what lessons are there in this startup's trajectory?
Education Is Harder Than You Think
Ventilla came from Google, and had a Silicon Valley attitude about innovating other fields. In 2016, CONTINUE READING: CURMUDGUCATION: What Can We Learn From An Experimental High Tech Wunderschool Failure?

Peter Greene: 'Tired Of Being Treated Like Dirt' Teacher Morale In The 2019 PDK Poll

'Tired Of Being Treated Like Dirt' Teacher Morale In The 2019 PDK Poll

'Tired Of Being Treated Like Dirt' Teacher Morale In The 2019 PDK Poll
The title of the 2019 Phi Delta Kappa Poll of the Public's Attitudes Toward the Public Schools of "Frustration in the Schools," and the focus in much of the coverage has been on the results about teacher morale.
75% of teachers say schools in their community are underfunded.
50% of teachers have considered leaving the profession.
48% of teachers feel less valued by the community. (10% say they are valued "a great deal.")
55% of teachers would not want their child to follow them into the profession.
The breakdown of the teachers who have seriously considered getting out cite reasons that are all inter-related.
Inadequate pay is the marquee reason, and notably regional. Public school teachers are far less likely to feel fairly paid in the South and Midwest. That reason is followed closely by stress and pressure, which is followed by a lack of respect. Lack of support. Teaching no longer enjoyable. Testing requirements. Workload.
These are tied together with the single thread of distrust and disrespect for teachers. This has been evident on the national stage with issues like installing a Secretary of Education who had previously dismissed public education as a "dead end" or a Secretary CONTINUE READING: 'Tired Of Being Treated Like Dirt' Teacher Morale In The 2019 PDK Poll