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Friday, January 10, 2020

Funds Diverted from Class without Proper Authorization – The Prospector

Funds Diverted from Class without Proper Authorization – The Prospector

Funds Diverted from Class without Proper Authorization

Account documents showing request for withdrawal. Credit: O. C. Carle
C.K. McClatchy’s Principal Peter Lambert and Associated Study Body coordinator Darell T. Martin are alleged to have diverted over $8,000 of student-fundraised money from the 2017 class account, according to social science teachers and 2018 class sponsors Lori Jablonski and Tim Griffin. 
For their senior gift, the class of 2017 intended on adorning the lobby of McClatchy with golden plaques of famous alumni–a “Wall of Fame” exhibition. Class sponsors Jablonski and Griffin, helped students research and set aside $11,541 from class funds for the exhibit. 
To ensure the project’s execution, Jablonski and Griffin were deliberate in CCing Principal Lambert on an email chain that specified the exact amount of money in the 2017 class account, along with various project intricacies. After the district vetoed the exhibition at the beginning of the 2018 school year due to architectural concerns, the exhibit went back to the drawing board.
“[Principal Lambert was] well aware that there was a project that didn’t happen,” said Griffin. When shown the coinciding documents, Mr. Lambert repeatedly claimed he didn’t remember the history of the account. 
Throughout the remainder of the 2018-19 school year, “Mr. Griffin would check CONTINUE READING: Funds Diverted from Class without Proper Authorization – The Prospector

NANCY BAILEY: Pressuring Parents to Teach Their Kindergartners to Read: The New Norm?

Pressuring Parents to Teach Their Kindergartners to Read: The New Norm?

Pressuring Parents to Teach Their Kindergartners to Read: The New Norm?

Ahh. There’s no place like home, especially if you’re a kindergartner whose been sitting and working all day on phonics worksheets, or seated in front of a screen doing reading exercises.
Once you get off that school bus it will be time to finally make a break for it. Play awaits! Looking at those pictures in books are fun too. Books are  friends. They take you places you’ve never been even if you sometimes have to guess at the words.
But, what’s this? There’s mom, beckoning you with more reading instruction at the kitchen table!
Face it kid. You can’t get a break from the pressure. Play is a distant memory. Reading for fun is for later, if ever, after you learn letter sounds and rules and get out of those dull A level books.
Across the country, parents are being instructed by their children’s teachers on how to CONTINUE READING: Pressuring Parents to Teach Their Kindergartners to Read: The New Norm?

CURMUDGUCATION: The Foundation of Real Writing

CURMUDGUCATION: The Foundation of Real Writing

The Foundation of Real Writing

As I've mentioned before, we have the poor fortune to live in a golden age of bad writing instruction. There are a variety of reasons for this, ranging from the rise of high-stakes testing to some less-than-wonderful traditions to the widespread discomfort with writing instruction of many classroom teachers.

The last is probably the worst issue facing writing instruction. It's a curious thing; you don't find many band directors who don't play an instrument or many phys ed teachers who aren't involved in some sort of physical activity, but schools are loaded with folks who teach writing, but who never write themselves.

You can spot the different kinds of bad writing instruction by the foundations on which they are built, by the things that are treated as basic building blocks of writing. Here are the false foundations you're likely to find.

Text and a Question

Colemanism in action, this approach to writing starts with the idea that the only writing worth writing is in response to a text in order to answer a particular question that a teacher or test manufacturer has posed.

Look at the Big Standardized Tests of the past two decades and you find a remarkable phenomenon-- the writing test using multiple choice items. That's possible because one of the premises of this bad CONTINUE READING: 
CURMUDGUCATION: The Foundation of Real Writing

Louisiana’s White Elephant – Educate Louisiana

Louisiana’s White Elephant – Educate Louisiana

Louisiana’s White Elephant

A white elephant gift exchange, Yankee swap or Dirty Santa is a party game where amusing, impractical gifts are exchanged during festivities. The goal of a white elephant gift exchange is to entertain party-goers rather than to gain a genuinely valuable or highly sought-after item.

By now, all of Louisiana is aware of the resignation submitted by Superintendent of Education, John White. No doubt from the very first tweet by The Advocate’s Will Sentell, public school parents and educators began rejoicing, but there was no shortage of folks who asked the question, “What if we get someone worse?”
My friends and colleagues, Mercedes Schneider and Michael Deshotels, both published blogs related to White’s exit. Schneider wrote about possible closed-door dealings and White’s future plans which you can read by clicking here —> La. State Superintendent John White resigns. Deshotels pays particular attention to White’s not-so-spectacular track record which can be read here —> The Legacy of Superintendent John White. I’m going to focus more on the future of Louisiana and talk a little about some of the names popping up as replacements.
First, and foremost, I can’t stress enough that it is more important now, than ever, that public school stakeholders reach out to CONTINUE READING: Louisiana’s White Elephant – Educate Louisiana

The Market Fails Education | radical eyes for equity

The Market Fails Education | radical eyes for equity

The Market Fails Education

One of the intended consequences of the federal legislation known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB) was to force public schools in the U.S. to disclose and then address differences among demographics of students. Two of the key demographics targeted were race and socioeconomic status.
While the outcome of this part of NCLB was not a surprise—exposing significant and persistent “gaps” correlated strongly with poverty and so-called racial minorities—there were unintended consequences, including the creation of the achievement gap market.
NCLB mandated that districts and schools not only report disaggregated data on race, gender, and socioeconomic categories, but also document how those gaps and demographics of students were being addressed in order to close the gap.
Within just a few years, then, Ruby Payne boosted her own career by monetizing how to address the poverty gap in education, as detailed by Ng and Rury in 2009:
Measures of Payne’s influence are remarkable to consider.  Her aforementioned [self-published] book[, A Framework for Understanding Poverty,] has sold over one million copies and been translated into other languages such as Spanish since its publication in 2005.  Payne has also launched a speaking career by conducting professional development workshops in 38 American states and internationally.  She trains approximately 40,000 educators a year and reports having worked with 70 to 80 percent of the nation’s districts over the last decade with the assistance of her staff and consultants (Shapira, 2007).
However, while Payne provided a product that met the demands of the CONTINUE READING: The Market Fails Education | radical eyes for equity

#LivesOverLuxury: The Poor People’s Army Will March on the DNC in Milwaukee on July 13, 2020 – Wrench in the Gears

#LivesOverLuxury: The Poor People’s Army Will March on the DNC in Milwaukee on July 13, 2020 – Wrench in the Gears

#LivesOverLuxury: The Poor People’s Army Will March on the DNC in Milwaukee on July 13, 2020

Today the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign officially launches preparations for the 2020 Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee where we plan to march to demand an end to the wars at home and abroad. The 67 cents of every taxpayer dollar that is devoted to waging war must instead be used to meet our responsibilities to those in need here at home. The theme of the march, #LivesOverLuxury, speaks to the brutality of wealth inequality, gentrification, and dispossession. The Poor Peoples Economic Human Rights Campaign is an organization advocating for the rights of poor and is led by poor people. This afternoon there will be a press conference in Milwaukee. Press release below. 


January 9, 2020 PRESS CONTACTS
Cheri Honkala: 215-869-4753
Galen Tyler: 215-883-9771 
The Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign (PPEHRC) and the Poor People’s Army announce the #LivesOverLuxury March on the DNC, that will be held opening day of the Democratic National Convention on July 13, 2020 at 4:00 p.m.
MEMBERS OF THE POOR PEOPLE’S ARMY WILL BE ON HAND JANUARY 10 AT 2:00 P.M., AT FISERV FORUM ON THE SE CORNER OF 6TH ST AND WEST JUNEAU IN MILWAUKEE, WI, the site of this summer’s DNC, to speak to the press and public about plans for the march and the teach-in they are holding.
Cheri Honkala, a formerly homeless mother, antipoverty advocate, and
founder of PPEHRC, will provide details of the march. Also present will
be other PPEHRC leaders who organize and educate around issues impacting youth, student debt, community and police violence, climate crises, lack of living wage jobs, and homelessness.
“I want to encourage everyone to come out and address this epidemic, the
endless gun violence, that exists in our communities, especially the
African American community,” said Jamal Johnson, of Stop Killing Us
organization. “Also want to make all aware that we are the solution to
the problem, so we must galvanize to combat it. That’s in a country that
spends $50 million on security for a week at the DNC but abandons
addressing the violence at home.”
“People don’t have a place to live, they’re dying. There’s homeless CONTINUE READING: #LivesOverLuxury: The Poor People’s Army Will March on the DNC in Milwaukee on July 13, 2020 – Wrench in the Gears

DID YOU MISS DIANE RAVITCH'S BLOG TODAY? | A site to discuss better education for all

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


A site to discuss better education for all

Massachusetts: A Parent Thanks a State Official Who Exposed Dark Money

One of the very exciting episodes in my new book SLAYING GOLIATH describes the struggle in Massachusetts surrounding a 2016 referendum to expand the number of charter schools in the state. The referendum was called Question 2. Yes on 2 received funding from billionaires (the Waltons and Bloomberg), DFER (hedge fund managers), and out-of-state groups whose donors were unknown. The last group is ca
Ohio: Should States Subsidize Private and Religious Education by Subtracting Money from Public Schools?

Jan Resseger asks the ultimate cost about vouchers , in response to the Ohio legislature’s recent decision to expand vouchers to two-thirds of all school districts in the state, including high-performing districts. Should public money be subtracted from public schools to underwrite vouchers for private and religious schools? The state’s public schools will be hit hard by the voucher law. And sinc
North Carolina: I Endorse Jen Mangrum for State Superintendent of Schools

I am happy to give my personal endorsement to Dr. Jennifer (Jen) Mangrum, who is running for State Superintendent of Public Instruction in North Carolina. Jen has already been endorsed by the Network for Public Education, which concluded that she is far and away the most qualified candidate in the race. Jen is a career educator who understands the importance of restoring the integrity of public e
Sue Legg: The Dark $ide of $chool Choice in Florida

What happens when Florida’s biggest for-profit charter chain takes over three low-performing public schools? Follow the money. Ka-Ching! Sue Legg of the Florida League of Women Voters guides you through a path paved with greenbacks. Here is her summary: The whole sordid affair was orchestrated by the current Senate Ed. Committee Chair. Millions of dollars were poured into the K12 consolidated sch
The Two Most Horrifying Stories about Standardized Testing in the Past Decade

Valerie Strauss wrote a column in her Answer Sheet blog at the Washington Post about the two most horrifying stories in the past decade of high-stakes standardized testing. Both occurred in Florida, a state where standardized testing is treated as an unerring and essential metric, except for students who use state money to attend religious schools, which are exempt from the state’s testing regime


Teresa Hanafin: Trump Reduces More Environmental Regulations, While Treasury Secretary Mnuchin Hides Trump’s Travel Expenses

I fear we are becoming insensitive to shock in the Trump era. And the very concept of “government ethics” seems to be an oxymoron in this era. Here are two shocking reports by Teresa Hanafin, who writes the Fast Forward commentary of the Boston Globe: Trump holds another campaign rally tonight, this time in Toledo. Earlier in the day, he’s scheduled to announce some proposed National Environmenta
Newark: Superintendent Wants to Close Four Charters and Limit New Ones

Roger Léon, superintendent of Newark schools, wants to close four charter schools and ban most new ones. Patrick Wall of Chalkbeat reports: The head of the Newark school system is calling for the closure of four local charter schools and a ban on most new charter schools, a clear signal that the district hopes to rein in the city’s fast-growing charter sector. The schools — M.E.T.S., People’s Pre
I Endorse Andy Saultz for State Legislature in Oregon

Andrew (Andy) Saultz is running for the Oregon State Legislature in District 33 (Northwest Portland). I am pleased to endorse his candidacy. The legislature will be fortunate to have Andy Saultz, an experienced and knowledgeable educator, among its members. Education is the most important of every state’s responsibilities. Nothing matters more than making sure that the children and young people o
Jan Resseger: The Empowering and Hopeful Message of “SLAYING GOLIATH”

In this post, Jan Resseger reviews my new book SLAYING GOLIATH: THE PASSIONATE RESISTANCE TO PRIVATIZATION AND THE FIGHT TO SAVE AMERICA’S PUBLIC SCHOOLS. Jan is an expert on the damage imposed by so-called “reformers.” Several years ago, when I was in Cleveland, she took me on a tour of devastated neighborhoods. Ohio legislators and local leaders responded to growing poverty by creating charters
Daniel Koretz: American Students Are Not Getting Smarter, and Test-Based “Reforms” Are to Blame

Daniel Koretz is one of the leading authorities on testing in the United States. A professor at Harvard University, he has written two important books about testing–its uses and misuses. The first was Measuring Up: What Educational Testing Really Tells Us. His latest is The Testing Charade: Pretending to Make Schools Better. He recently wrote an article about how the federal government’s demand f

Texas: State Judge Temporarily Blocks State Takeover of Houston Schools

A state judge in Texas blocked the state takeover of the Houston Independent School District until she issues a final order in June. A state judge Wednesday evening immediately blocked Texas from taking over the Houston Independent 
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