Monday, June 22, 2020

Union to California’s teachers: Brace for cuts steeper than the Great Recession

Union to California’s teachers: Brace for cuts steeper than the Great Recession

Union to California’s teachers: Brace for cuts steeper than the Great Recession
CTA President Toby Boyd said forthcoming cuts will be “like nothing we’ve ever seen,” projecting loss of up to 50,000 teachers


In a signal that California public education leaders are bracing for the possibility of drastic funding cuts, the state’s teachers association is counseling local unions how to forestall the worst in their districts.
A California Teachers Association bargaining advisory issued last month drew heavily on lessons learned from the Great Recession, when more than 30,000 educators were laid off amid slashes to services and programs. Their advice to teachers unions? Know the numbers and bargain hard to stave off permanent cuts.
CTA President Toby Boyd said forthcoming slashes to public education funds will be “like nothing we’ve ever seen,” with the possibility of 50,000 teacher layoffs even if the state receives federal assistance.
Uncertainty abounds when it comes to this year’s state K-12 education budget, which supports most public school districts with the bulk of their funding. Perhaps not much solace, education leaders say, at least they are experienced in making cuts during a recession.
The legislature sent the state budget to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk on Monday, but it’s uncertain what happens next.
Newsom has until June 30 to sign, edit it with line-item cuts or veto it. He’s warned of 10% cuts to the Local Control Funding Formula, or how schools are funded, in his May revision. But the Legislature since has promised to rescind that, betting that federal aid in the form of the $3 trillion HEROES Act designed to stimulate a pandemic-stalled economy will materialize.
Even before the coronavirus outbreak closed schools in mid-March, many California public school districts were cash-strapped and considering layoffs. They’ve made emergency technology purchases to launch remote learning in the months since, and face added costs of reopening, such as providing personal protective equipment and additional cleaning.
On top of the public health and economic challenges, districts are fielding new calls to respond to national calls against racism and police violence by slashing budgets of campus police departments in the wake of George Floyd protests.
“I equate this to what happened in 2008/2009 as being Triple A baseball compared to Major League,” Boyd said. “This is going to be devastating to a lot of educational systems in the CONTINUE READING: Union to California’s teachers: Brace for cuts steeper than the Great Recession

Hundreds of parents, teachers, and educators rallied in front of the U.S. Dept. of Education to demand change for Black students.| wusa9.com

Black Students Matter rally calls for equity in education | wusa9.com

‘Please don't call me your average Black boy’ | Black Students Matter rally highlights disparities in education
Hundreds of parents, teachers, and educators rallied in front of the U.S. Dept. of Education to demand change for Black students.




WASHINGTON D.C., DC — Hundreds of families, educators, and students kicked off Juneteenth with a march from Freedom Plaza in downtown D.C. to the U.S. Dept. of Education to demand justice for Black students and to end disparities in education.
The Black Students Matter rally highlighted the systemic issues impacting the Black community and Black students across the D.C. area.

7-year-old Cavanaugh Bell read an emotional plea for change as part of the students' rally:
"'There's no way you did all your work that fast.' 'I wouldn't believe you by looking at you that you were that smart or my favorite.' 'He's not your average Black boy.' I heard all of those things from my teachers before I was in kindergarten. Please don't call me your average Black boy. We are extraordinary, and the ground shakers that this world needs to build a better future."

Organizers of the rally, Educators for Equity, are calling for five demands centered around equity and education.
  • Defund DC police by redirecting money to programs and resources that focus on mental health
  • Equitable district funding
  • Revised curriculum reflective of African American students
  • Abolish for-profit standardized testing
  • Focus on fixing schools rather than shutting them down

More Cartoons on Covid-19 Pandemic | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

More Cartoons on Covid-19 Pandemic | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

More Cartoons on Covid-19 Pandemic



I have selected cartoons I have not used before. Enjoy1






More Cartoons on Covid-19 Pandemic: More Cartoons on Covid-19 Pandemic | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice




The often ugly reality black students face in our schools - The Washington Post

The often ugly reality black students face in our schools - The Washington Post

The often ugly reality black students face in our schools


While protesters are taking to the streets of America to protest police brutality and racial injustice, black and other students and alumni of color are using social media to tell personal stories of racism that they encountered in school — public and private, K-12 and college.
The posts are mostly anonymous, often on pages that are specific to individual schools — such as the elite private schools Sidwell Friends in Washington, D.C., and Princeton Day School in New Jersey.
As reported by the New York Times, students are starting pages and inviting other students, alumni and even teachers to tell their stories. There are now scores of them, often beautifully composed text boxes that share stories of what it was and is to be black at those schools.
This post is from Alden S. Blodget, a white educator who spent decades working in private independent schools that claimed to have “diverse” and “inclusive” communities but didn’t. He said he tried to talk with black students to learn about their reality but didn’t get far. He writes:
They weren’t going to share painful experiences with some old white guy who ran a mostly white school, especially when those experiences criticized the school and belied our claims to having created a welcoming, diverse community. I was asking for their trust in a system that they didn’t experience as trustworthy …
Now, he writes, he sees promise in this new social media movement, writing, “Their collective voices challenge the empty rhetoric of our idealistic claims.”
Blodget was both a student of independent schools and a teacher of English and drama, as well as an administrator in five different schools in several states during his nearly four-decade academic career. He has published numerous pieces about education.
From 2000 until 2014, he worked with University of Southern California neuroscientist Mary Helen Immordino-Yang, offering workshops for teachers to explore the implications of her research and that CONTINUE READING: The often ugly reality black students face in our schools - The Washington Post

Betsy DeVos is an abysmal failure and our nation’s schoolchildren are paying the price - The Washington Post

Betsy DeVos is an abysmal failure and our nation’s schoolchildren are paying the price - The Washington Post

Betsy DeVos is an abysmal failure and our nation’s schoolchildren are paying the price


Months after schools across the country closed to stop the spread of the coronavirus, it’s still not clear how, or even if, children can safely return to classrooms in the coming weeks and months. Despite the best efforts of teachers suddenly plunged into teaching remotely, the loss of learning has been staggering, especially for low-income students. This would be the moment, you’d think, when the nation’s top education policy official would step up and attempt to offer leadership and best practices going forward. Instead, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is missing in action, at least when it comes to the issues that matter most.
Almost two months ago, the American Federation of Teachers released a plan detailing how schools could reopen safely. Their recommendations include mandatory hand-washing on entering the school and capping class sizes to encourage physical distancing. Last month, the conservative American Enterprise Institute released one as well; among other things, it urges schools to evaluate students for learning gaps as a result of the closures.
The Education Department, by contrast, is all but silent, issuing little in the way of guidance, and doing little to review what did and didn’t work. Anecdotal evidence suggests many parents and teachers found virtual learning dissatisfactory, while surveys found a large number of students didn’t attend their online classes regularly. A poll of North Carolina parents found a majority believed their children learned less online than in-person. The Education Department’s response? According to The Post’s Laura Meckler, just this month, “the department invited education officials to a panel discussion on the CONTINUE READING: Betsy DeVos is an abysmal failure and our nation’s schoolchildren are paying the price - The Washington Post

A Conversation in 2020 with James Baldwin’s “Letter from a Region in My Mind” – radical eyes for equity

A Conversation in 2020 with James Baldwin’s “Letter from a Region in My Mind” – radical eyes for equity

A Conversation in 2020 with James Baldwin’s “Letter from a Region in My Mind”


One of the worst forms of propaganda about text and reading in formal schooling is that any text has a fixed meaning, independent of the reader, the reader’s history, or the writer and the writer’s history.
Traditionally, K-12 schooling, often in English courses, has implemented a very reduced version of New Criticism that frames all text meaning as a static formula whereby the reader adds up the techniques and discovers an authoritative meaning (that is singular and, again, not grounded in the people creating meaning or the conditions surrounding either the writing or the reading). More recently this anemic approach to text and reading has been reinvigorated by the “close reading” movement embedded in the failed Common Core era.
In 2020 as the Trump era could be coming to a close and the U.S. is being ravaged by a pandemic and another round of something like mainstream racial awareness, I re-read James Baldwin’s “Letter from a Region in My Mind.”
The 1962 publication of this essay (which becomes a section of The Fire Next Time) had a distinct historical and personal set of purposes—Baldwin’s CONTINUE READING: A Conversation in 2020 with James Baldwin’s “Letter from a Region in My Mind” – radical eyes for equity

OPINION: ‘For our many Black and Brown children, the threats to their physical safety now and into the future are eating away at their insides’

OPINION: Trauma hurts our kids. Here's how educators can help address it

OPINION: ‘For our many Black and Brown children, the threats to their physical safety now and into the future are eating away at their insides’
Ways that teachers and schools can intervene to help students through traumatic events

Our students are traumatized. They are living with fear and confusion. They are experiencing or witnessing police violence, rioting and looting. And schools, a place where children typically process events and emotions, are shuttered.
What are children to do? Who will acknowledge, understand and respond to their trauma and its accompanying symptomology? Who’s there to enable our students to understand racism and violence, and to mitigate the lack of certainty in our world? Who will lead our children forward with hope for a better tomorrow, a world in which we protect our Black and Brown children?
Let’s begin by understanding how we got to this spot.
Prior to the pandemic and the most recent instances of police brutality, America’s students were already traumatized. In addition to family-based trauma, homelessness and food insecurity, children were living through the aftermath of natural disasters and school shootings.
We needed to respond and help them. We were only just recognizing the need for, and the value of, trauma responsiveness. Then, in the blink of an CONTINUE READING: OPINION: Trauma hurts our kids. Here's how educators can help address it

Virtual Charter Industry Expecting Big Growth and Profits Due to Pandemic | Diane Ravitch's blog

Virtual Charter Industry Expecting Big Growth and Profits Due to Pandemic | Diane Ravitch's blog

Virtual Charter Industry Expecting Big Growth and Profits Due to Pandemic


The largest of the virtual charters is the K12 Inc. virtual charter chain, listed on the New York Stock Exchange, whose revenues exceeded $1 billion this year.
Executives haul in big salaries (one of K12’s founders, Ron Packard, was paid $5 million a year but has since moved on to lead other charter chains). Michael Milken was an early investor in K12 and Bill Bennett was a prominent leader until he made racist remarks that caused him to be removed.
The most important thing to know about virtual charter schools is that they have dismal track records. They enroll as many students as possible through heavy advertising and marketing, but their graduation rates are low, their test scores are low, and their attrition rates are CONTINUE READING: Virtual Charter Industry Expecting Big Growth and Profits Due to Pandemic | Diane Ravitch's blog

If High Stakes Standardized Testing Fades, Lots of Awful Punishments for Students, Teachers, and Schools Would Disappear | janresseger

If High Stakes Standardized Testing Fades, Lots of Awful Punishments for Students, Teachers, and Schools Would Disappear | janresseger

If High Stakes Standardized Testing Fades, Lots of Awful Punishments for Students, Teachers, and Schools Would Disappear


In yesterday’s Washington Post, Valerie Strauss published a very hopeful column: It Looks Like the Beginning of the End of America’s Obsession with Student Standardized Tests.  I hope she is right.  Her column covers current efforts to stop the requirement for college entrance exams and the wave of testing in primary and secondary public schools that was enshrined in the 2002 No Child Left Behind Act. This post will be limited to examining the implications of the mandated standardized testing that, for two decades, has dominated America’s K-12 public schools.
Strauss begins: “America has been obsessed with student standardized tests for nearly 20 years.  Now it looks like the country is at the beginning of the end of our high-stakes testing mania—both for K-12 ‘accountability’ purposes and in college admissions.  When President George W. Bush signed the K-12 No Child Left Behind Act in 2002, the country began an experiment based on the belief that we could test our way to educational success and end the achievement gap.  His successor, Barack Obama, ratcheted up the stakes of test scores under that same philosophy. It didn’t work, which came as no surprise to teachers and other critics. They had long pointed to extensive research showing standardized test scores are most strongly correlated to a student’s life circumstances.”
Strauss explains what’s different this year: “Now, we are seeing the collapse of the two-decade-old bipartisan consensus among major policymakers that testing was the key lever for holding students, schools and teachers ‘accountable.’ And it is no coincidence that it is happening aginst the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic that has forced educational institutions to revamp how they operate.  States are learning that they can live without them, having been given permission by the Department of Education to not give them this past spring… Former vice president Joe Biden, who is the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee and ahead of Trump in many polls, has tried to distance himself from the pro-testing policies of the CONTINUE READING: If High Stakes Standardized Testing Fades, Lots of Awful Punishments for Students, Teachers, and Schools Would Disappear | janresseger

There is no easy calculation for September | JD2718

There is no easy calculation for September | JD2718

There is no easy calculation for September


At Wednesday’s United Federation of Teachers Delegate Assembly and again at Thursday’s UFT Town Hall, President Michael Mulgrew made the point clearly:
“Socially Distanced Capacity” divided by “# of Teachers” ≠ “Number of ‘cohorts'”
If you listened in, you heard him explain. Say you have a fourth grade with 200 kids. 8 teachers. Given your capacity, you can fit 100 kids into 10 rooms. But where do the extra two teachers come from? And who is teaching the 100 kids remotely?
He made it simple. Honestly, that was enough for the DA. But the situation on the ground will be far more complex. Push-ins change student capacity. We are not talking about lunch. Which, I assume, is a time masks come off? How much time will teachers stay in rooms without breaks? How will bathroom flow (pardon the choice of words) be managed?
It’s wonderful to say “oh yes, entrance can be staggered” – but I know the people saying it have not tried to do it. Nor managed distancing in hallways that are half-full. Nor stairwells. Nor elevators.
But we don’t have to go there. Mulgrew made it really clear.
And he had to. The DoE had put out an absurdly dumb powerpoint that facilely made it sound CONTINUE READING: There is no easy calculation for September | JD2718

CATCH UP WITH CURMUDGUCATION + ICYMI: Fathers Day Edition (6/21

CURMUDGUCATION: ICYMI: Fathers Day Edition (6/21



 Fathers Day Edition


I've had my hands full elsewhere, and have been spending refreshingly little time on line, but I still have a few goodies to pass along. Remember, sharing is caring,

What Teachers Want
American Education Research Journal has some research about what it takes to attract and retain teachers. A fun conversation starter.

Looking for the Missing  
NBC News has the story of Detroit teachers who went looking for students who went missing when schools shut down.

Charter Schools Tap Coronarelief
Erica Green at the NYT with a story of how some charter schools are wearing their "business" hats when money is involved.

Netflix billionaire building secret luxury teacher retreat
Reed "Who needs elected school boards" Hastings has another fun eduproject. Rich amateurs messing in education-- what could possibly go wrong?

What Anti-racist teachers do differently
The Atlantic with a cool story about How It's Done

The Beginning of the End for Testing?
Valeria Strauss with some analysis about where we are right now with the whole Big Standardized Test love affair.

Standardized Tests Increase School Segregation  
Steven Singer explains how standardized testing adds to our segregation problems.

Arrested Development: How Police Ended Up In Schools
Have You Heard (the only podcast we actually follow here at the Curmudgucation Institute) takes a look at how we ended up with the halls of school being policed like the streets of a city.

On Comparing Education Spending Across Time   
Nobody explains and clarifies the esoteric issues of school funding better than Mark "Jersey Jazzman" Weber. Here's a guide to the meaning and use of some of those figures folks like to throw around.

Ask Dads How To Reimagine Public Schools   
Nancy Bailey offers a Fathers Day look at what fathers would like to see in the world of reimagined public education.

Strummin' On The Ol Banjo  
Nancy Flanagan takes a look at issues that music teachers face, and how they are really some of the same issues all teachers face.




CURMUDGUCATION: ICYMI: Fathers Day Edition (6/21



CATCH UP WITH CURMUDGUCATION


GOP Legislators To Schools: Re-Open Or Else. - https://www.forbes.com/sites/petergreene/2020/06/15/gop-to-schools-re-open-or-else/#2a137089159c by @palan57 on @forbes



Teachers Face A Summer Of Soul Searching. What Do They Do In The Fall? - https://www.forbes.com/sites/petergreene/2020/06/12/teachers-face-a-summer-of-soul-searching-what-do-they-do-in-the-fall/#424383032993 by @palan57 on @forbes





No, Software Still Can't Grade Student Essays
One of the great white whales of computer-managed education and testing is the dream of robo-scoring, software that can grade a piece of writing as easily and efficiently as software can score multiple choice questions. Robo-grading would be swift, cheap, and consistent. The only problem after all these years is that it still can’t be done. Still, ed tech companies keep making claims that they ha
AEI And The Commodification Of Education
The American Enterprise Institute comes from that part of the ed reform spectrum devoted to free market approaches. But a new report from AEI really pushes the boundaries of treating education as a commodity like a house or a piece of jewelry. Really. The report is entitled " An Appraisal Market for K-12 Education " and it's authored by Lindsey Burke, the director of the Center for Education Polic
Rebecca Friedrichs Still Hates The Teachers Unions
In 2014, Rebecca Friedrichs, after twenty-some years in the classroom, decided to go ahead and be the face of a lawsuit that would be derailed when Justice Scalia died. The court would eventually get to take their shot at unions with the Janus case. But while Friedrichs may have lost a lawsuit, she did manage to launch a career as a far-right Christianist spokesperson . She has done plenty of work
To Those Of You Worried About The Covid Slide
Dear concerned policy makers, bureaucrats, and edu-wonks: Ever since NWEA, the testing manufacturer that promised it can read minds by measuring how long it takes students to pick a multiple choice answer, issued their report on the Covid-19 Slide , you have been freaking out a little because they hear you say that distance learning has been disastrous and if we do it again in the fall, we'll prod
ICYMI: Summer Vacation Edition (6/14)
Whatever summer vacation means this year, it has finally arrived at my house. Which mostly just means that my wife has shifted from working on things for this year to working on things for next year. Here are some things to read. Predecessors Try To Fill Void Left By DeVos This is a strange little thing. First, that Duncan and Spelling see themselves as somehow way different from DeVos. Also, ther
AL: Why The State Pulled The Plug On A Charter For The First Time
Last week, the Alabama Public [sic] Charter School Commission took an unprecedented action and revoked a charter school's charter before it even managed to open. It's a tangly story, with connections to several charter school issues. Woodland Prep was supposed to be a hot new charter school, but it came with so much baggage that t here is an entire blog following the entire mess. Believe me-- I'm
Never Mind The Personalized Learning. Let's Do Personalized Learning Instead.
As the education world scrambles to figure out what next fall will look like, many, many voices are speaking up for reimagined schooling. One particular model has surfaced repeatedly, and it’s not at all new—but it could be. 


CURMUDGUCATION - http://curmudgucation.blogspot.com/