October 11th, be there: The Network for Public Education will hold an historic event

  PUBLIC Education Nation will deliver the conversation the country has been waiting for. Rather than featuring billionaires and pop singers, this event will be built around intense conversations featuring leading educators, parents, students and community activists. We have waited too long for that seat at someone else’s table. This time, the tables are turned, and we are the ones setting the agenda. This event will be livestreamed on the web on the afternoon of Saturday, October 11, from the auditorium of Brooklyn New School, a public school. There will be four panels focusing on the most critical issues we face … Continue reading October 11th, be there: The Network for Public Education will hold an historic event

The Weekly Update: More on the Common Core, push back and opting out of high stakes testing, the FTC steps in to protect student privacy, a gag order on teachers and more

Let’s start off with this gem: Annual Kindergarten Show Canceled to Allow Kids to Focus on College A beloved annual kindergarten show at a New York school was canceled this week by administrators in an apparent effort to prepare the five-year-olds for college, probably by teaching them that you can’t trust anyone. Administrators at the Harley Avenue Primary School in Elwood, New York, recently sent out a series of letters alerting parents that the annual song-and-dance show their children had been preparing for wasn’t good enough for their looming college applications. “The reason for eliminating the Kindergarten show is simple. … Continue reading The Weekly Update: More on the Common Core, push back and opting out of high stakes testing, the FTC steps in to protect student privacy, a gag order on teachers and more

Bill Moyers and Diane Ravitch on Charter Schools

  From Bill Moyers’ website: Public Schools for Sale? Public education is becoming big business as bankers, hedge fund managers and private equity investors are entering what they consider to be an “emerging market.” As Rupert Murdoch put it after purchasing an education technology company, “When it comes to K through 12 education, we see a $500 billion sector in the US alone.”   Education historian Diane Ravitch says the privatization of public education has to stop. As assistant secretary of education under President George H.W. Bush, she was an advocate of school choice and charter schools; under George W. Bush, she … Continue reading Bill Moyers and Diane Ravitch on Charter Schools

Diane Ravitch: The Common Core Standards “should have no legitimacy”

From The Fatal Flaw of the Common Core Standards by Diane Ravitch: The reason to oppose the Common Core standards is because they violate the well-established and internationally recognized process for setting standards in a way that is transparent, that recognizes the expertise of those who must implement them, that builds on the consensus of concerned parties, and that permits appeal and revision. Across the nation, parents and educators are raising objections to the Common Core standards, and many states are reconsidering whether to abandon them as well as the federally-funded tests that accompany them. Arne Duncan, Jeb Bush, Bill … Continue reading Diane Ravitch: The Common Core Standards “should have no legitimacy”

The facts about the Common Core Standards

The State of Washington signed on to administer the Common Core Standards in our schools with approval of the ed reform Bill 6696. That means that there will be new textbooks, lesson plans, worksheets with correlating homework and tests to make sure that our students are all on the same page at the same time no matter the location of the district or your child’s abilities or the level of each class academically. Charter schools, option schools or public schools, each student is to know the same material at the same time at the same age. Is that how actual children grow … Continue reading The facts about the Common Core Standards

Lisa Macfarlane of WA DFER, and now Suzanne Estey, with their conspiracy theories

Update, October 31, 2013: Suzanne Estey has sent out a new flyer stating that Sue Peters’ and I have created some sort of theory out of the blue on the connection between big money and public school policy. I don’t know where Estey’s been besides on the CCER Board, an organization solely funded by Bill Gates, but maybe she can’t see the forest for all those trees, or is it for all those bucks? Estey is referring to our Lines of Influence post that went up three years ago and has been read and resonated with parents, teachers, students and … Continue reading Lisa Macfarlane of WA DFER, and now Suzanne Estey, with their conspiracy theories

Tele-Town Hall with Diane Ravitch

Our Schools Alliance presents: Tele-Town Hall with Diane Ravitch Wednesday, October 16th 8:00 PM EDT “[Diane] is America’s foremost historian in the areas of education policy, she’s a champion of public education, she’s a courageous speaker and she’s a truth-teller.” –Actor, Matt Damon You are invited to join Diane Ravitch for a tele-town hall discussion of the most challenging issues facing public education today. Dr. Ravitch’s book, Reign of Error, lights the way for communities to undo corporate reform and deliver equity and justice in education. Limited space is available! Please RSVP by Monday, October 14th. After you sign up, … Continue reading Tele-Town Hall with Diane Ravitch

“Reign of Error” by Diane Ravitch: A Review

Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America’s Public Schools Dr. Ravitch shatters one corporate reform myth after another with clarity providing excellent background information in the Notes and Appendix of this book. Because of her courageousness and direct approach, expect the corporate media to attack her because no one is left standing in this book, at least on the reform side, from President Obama’s support of school privatization to the machinations of Michelle Rhee. This book is a perfect reference guide to all things ed reform. Don’t understand much about test scores? Check … Continue reading “Reign of Error” by Diane Ravitch: A Review

Diane Ravitch in Seattle with her new book Reign of Error on September 26

Diane Ravitch is coming to town on September 26th to discuss her latest book Reign of Error:The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America’s Public Schools. I have been asked to review the book and that review will be posted on September 17th. The book will be available in bookstores on September 18th. You will not be able to miss this book in the bookstore by the way, that orange on the cover is as bright as one can make it in printed form, seriously. But that’s good news for the rest of us because Diane takes … Continue reading Diane Ravitch in Seattle with her new book Reign of Error on September 26

Should charter schools be called “public schools”?

Diane Ravitch described in a post yesterday why charter schools are public schools in name only. To follow is an excerpt from her letter to Deborah Meier on Bridging Differences: Are Charter Schools Public Schools? I noted in my blog last week that the visionaries of the charter school idea—Raymond Budde of the University of Massachusetts and Albert Shanker of the American Federation of Teachers—never intended that charter schools would compete with public schools. Budde saw charters as a way to reorganize public school districts and to provide more freedom for teachers. He envisioned teams of teachers asking for a … Continue reading Should charter schools be called “public schools”?