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Beware of Tech Titans Bearing Gifts

Reposted with permission from Nancy Bailey’s Education Website. The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) gift likely means huge changes for schools across the country. We’ve known for a long time that Chicago school experimentation is usually the country’s pilot project. And the CZI … Continue reading Beware of Tech Titans Bearing Gifts

Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel Wants Seniors to Have a Plan for the Future in Order to Graduate. Chris Reykdal, Washington State’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, Just Passed a Similar Requirement for 8th Graders.

Thanks to the tireless effort of education activist, the general public is on to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. People know Emanuel is bad news when it comes to public education. Of course, Mayor Emanuel worked hard to cement his reputation – by … Continue reading Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel Wants Seniors to Have a Plan for the Future in Order to Graduate. Chris Reykdal, Washington State’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, Just Passed a Similar Requirement for 8th Graders.

The Weekly Update: Predatory capitalism, privatization, sequestration and our children, Common Core Standards and opting out

Everyone is back in school, the privatizers are not letting up but parents, students and teachers are fighting back. Diane Ravitch is coming out with her new book on September 18th, a book that is totally awesome by the way. I will have a review posted on September 17th. We’ve got some great forums and events happening this Fall in Seattle, see the right hand column for information, and I am rested up, revved up and ready to go. First up, It’s the poverty stupid. Diane Ravitch in her new book, Reign of Error, points out very clearly how poverty … Continue reading The Weekly Update: Predatory capitalism, privatization, sequestration and our children, Common Core Standards and opting out

The Opt Out Update: Protests planned in Chicago and Colorado this week as the Opt Out Movement continues to grow and Louisiana opts out of the Common Core Standards

Bush, Obama focus on standardized testing leads to ‘opt-out’ parents’ movement A decade into the school accountability movement, pockets of resistance to standardized testing are sprouting up around the country, with parents and students opting out of the high-stakes tests used to evaluate schools and teachers.   From Seattle, where 600 high school students refused to take a standardized test in January, to Texas, where 86 percent of school districts say the tests are “strangling our public schools,” anti-testing groups argue that bubble exams have proliferated beyond reason, delivering more angst than benefits.   “Over the last couple of years, … Continue reading The Opt Out Update: Protests planned in Chicago and Colorado this week as the Opt Out Movement continues to grow and Louisiana opts out of the Common Core Standards

The Weekly Update: Chicago, Atlanta and the Twin Cities, all victims of corporate reform and Diane Ravitch shares her thoughts

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel with the help of Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd Bennett who has connections with the Broad Foundation, Gates and all things corporate, is moving right along with the privatizers’ playbook of closing schools and converting many of those schools into charter schools. Fifty four schools are slated for closing. Last Monday, the students held a protest against the closing of these schools: Students March on City Hall, Call School Closings ‘Racist,’ Dangerous Calling school closings “racist” and saying they could lead to “children dying,” dozens of students held a march Downtown Monday to protest last … Continue reading The Weekly Update: Chicago, Atlanta and the Twin Cities, all victims of corporate reform and Diane Ravitch shares her thoughts

Closing Schools: Why it’s not a good idea

There are two ALEC style education bills that Washington State Senator Steve Litzow sponsored, SB5328 and SB 5329. The first bill would grade schools and the second bill would either close the “low performing” schools permanently, convert them into charter schools, have the principal fired or replace half of the teaching staff. These two bills represent what has become the favored process for privatizing our public schools; label schools as “failing” and then turn them into charter schools. The Republican dominated Washington State Senate recently passed the bills and now they are sitting on the desks of our education committee … Continue reading Closing Schools: Why it’s not a good idea

The Weekly Update: The good news the ed reformers don’t want you to hear, following the money of corporate reform, testing, the Common Core Standards and how it all relates

So much news, so little time. First, the good news from edushyster: The Great Deception How to convince the public to abandon the wishy-washy notion of education for all in three easy steps. It is an indisputably true fact that our public schools are *hopelessly* failing beyond any hope of excellence. Yet the public remains strangely attached to the idea that publicly-funded schools have an obligation to educate all kids. Alas, that old-fashioned notion of equity is like the Lindsay Lohan of principles: washed-up and of waning interest. Today’s edu-visionary is all about excellence: the laser-honed vision of a 21st … Continue reading The Weekly Update: The good news the ed reformers don’t want you to hear, following the money of corporate reform, testing, the Common Core Standards and how it all relates

The Weekly Update: Eli Broad’s how-to guide on closing schools and disaster capitalism up close and personal

This has been a ghastly and heart wrenching week in education around the country but particularly in Philadelphia and Chicago where hundreds of schools are slated for closing. The dream of a charter school in every pot, or rather every community, is coming to past for Eli Broad and his ilk. Just  close the public schools and open up charter schools. Mission Accomplished. Squeeze out the funding for public schools, grade schools with an A through F, label schools as failing and voila! You have closed as many public schools as necessary to keep those charter schools afloat. But unfortunately, … Continue reading The Weekly Update: Eli Broad’s how-to guide on closing schools and disaster capitalism up close and personal

The Weekly Update: Chomsky on Public Education, SWF’s need only apply, a Stand for Children Fail in Chicago and more

The Weekly Update for the news and views you might have missed This week we’ll start with EduShyster and their article Single White Female The achievement gap is the civil rights issue of our time—which is why it may be necessary for us to destroy a large part of the Black middle class in order to achieve our goal of closing said gap. During the Chicago Teachers Union strike I encountered a stunning statistic. Since education reform arrived in Chicago, African Americans have dropped from 45% of the teaching force to just 19%. But how can that be? you must … Continue reading The Weekly Update: Chomsky on Public Education, SWF’s need only apply, a Stand for Children Fail in Chicago and more

Karen Lewis and Randi Weingarten on the Chicago teachers strike

    This article was originally published in the Wall Street Journal. It was written by Karen Lewis, president of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU), and Randi Weingarten, president of the CTU’s national union, the American Federation of Teachers. After more than a decade of top-down dictates, disruptive school closures, disregard of teachers’ and parents’ input, testing that squeezes out teaching, and cuts to the arts, physical education and libraries, educators in Chicago said “enough is enough.” With strong support from parents and many in the community, teachers challenged a flawed vision of education reform that has not helped schoolchildren … Continue reading Karen Lewis and Randi Weingarten on the Chicago teachers strike

EduShyster: Stuff White People Like: Education Reform

Here’s an excerpt. One lesson made abundantly clear by the recent Chicago teachers’ strike was that our nation suffers from a dearth of African-American hedge fund managers and venture capitalists. What can we do about this shameful scourge? I have no idea, but what I do know is that the strike revealed a fascinating split along race and class lines over what white hedge fund managers like to call priming the edu-pump for future profits education reform. The key take away: rich white people who send their kids to private schools were the only group to oppose the teachers’ strike. In … Continue reading EduShyster: Stuff White People Like: Education Reform

Democracy Now interviews Karen Lewis about the Chicago Teachers Union strike deal

Chicago Public School teachers are returning to the classroom today, nine days after launching their first strike in a quarter century. On Tuesday, 800 delegates of the Chicago Teachers Union voted overwhelmingly to suspend the strike to put an agreement with the city before the entire membership. The deal calls for a double-digit salary increase over the next three years, including raises for cost of living, while maintaining other increases for experience and advanced education. Part One: Part Two: Continue reading Democracy Now interviews Karen Lewis about the Chicago Teachers Union strike deal