Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 79,869
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 79,869
Retired teacher who sees much harm to public education from the "reforms" being pushed by corporations. Privatizing education is the wrong way to go. Children can not be treated as products, thought of in terms of profit and loss.
It is so refreshing to see a Democrat having the courage to speak out about this harmful policy.
A Free Market in Schooling?
Representative Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) is co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. He sees right through the Obama education policy and recognizes that it is a continuation of George W. Bush’s failed No Child Left Behind.
Here is more from Josh Eidelson's interview with Grijalva at Salon.
“A self-fulfilling conflict of interest”: Charter schools, testing mania, and Arne Duncan
The privatization of education “began as driven by ideology, but now it’s getting momentum because of the financial aspects,” Rep. Raul Grijalva argued to Salon.
He calls for a hearing.
A whole hearing on testing, the culture of testing, and what it is producing for public education.
Thank you for paying attention to the outcries of teachers, Raul Grijalva.
There is no doubt at all now that Arne Duncan with the apparent approval of President Obama is fulfilling the dreams of Newt Gingrich for Free Market schools.
Newt Gingrich teaming up with Arne Duncan for an education road trip.
For the last twenty years, we have tried to improve education while accepting the fundamental principles of a failed system, guarded by the education bureaucrats and teachers unions. We must now transform math and science education or fall behind. It really is that simple.
Arne Duncan started off his time in office by threatening California if it did not comply with his wishes.
U.S. education secretary is expected to withhold millions of dollars in education stimulus money if the state doesn't comply with his demand.
Now that kind of high-stakes testing that overrides teacher judgement, daily grades, classroom tests, and student portfolios is taking over the country.
It is refreshing to finally see a Democrat speak out in a common sense way for public education. I hope Raul Grijalva does not get on our bad list now....because what he is doing takes courage.
Posted by madfloridian | Sat Apr 19, 2014, 11:51 AM (34 replies)
Now that really hurts in my gut.
Elizabeth Warren, Howard Dean, and the progressive case for Education Reform.
There is even a video of Dean speaking out for charters school and denigrating public schools without considering all the in-depth causes for problems.
During a recent event at Castleton State College, Governor Dean described visiting a struggling high school in New Orleans where his son, a Teach for America Corps Member, taught. Dean was appalled by the poor education that many of the students were receiving, and realized that we need to do whatever was necessary to improve outcomes for those kids. And great public charter schools, he explained, should be part of the solution.
Opponents of education reform frequently try to frame the issue as part of Republican ideology. It’s a convenient political maneuver, for sure.
A shock? Oh yeah, a really big shock. Huge amounts of money and resources taken away from public education in one big move. A big shock indeed.
Public schools are for everyone. Charter schools are not. They need high test scores, so don't produce....you're out.
Posted by madfloridian | Fri Apr 18, 2014, 04:20 PM (8 replies)
and don't hold kids "accountable". He had high words of praise for Teach for America on Hardball, which shows he has not been paying attention to the voices of the public school advocates.
And this exchange with him.
Katie Osgood @KatieOsgood_ Apr 15
That is like slapping teachers in the face. Those are the worst of the very bad talking points from the "reformers", the "privatizers". To say to even imply that teachers do not hold kids accountable and have low levels of expectation for them....is (to use Dean's term) indeed IMMORAL.
At his twitter feed he says he will ban anyone who tweets to his twitter site. So that means I am banned Joan Walsh, Kattie Osgood, and a few hundred others who responded are banned from his site (or should I say his "sight".)
I mean why have a twitter feed if you don't want people to have discussions about what you say? Why bother? That's how you know who is responding and communicating.
Makes me think the "reformers" like Dean don't want to hear what the teachers have to say.
And that's a shame.
Here's some more of the very long conversation. He starts out with questioning the credentials of Diane Ravitch. Not a wise move on his part.
There are a lot of people on that thread. It should get the attention of some politicians who are not paying attention to educators.
Posted by madfloridian | Fri Apr 18, 2014, 12:11 AM (29 replies)
and losing our jobs."
These are the words of the teachers from a San Diego charter school in March on the loss of a fellow teacher. They were asked not to discuss the circumstances with parents or students. They decided to speak out.
Another great post from Anthony Cody at Education Week.
San Diego Charter Teachers: Bullying Contributed to Death of Colleague
At a San Diego school board meeting on Tuesday, March 11, dramatic testimony from teachers and parents uncovered serious questions about the way their charter school has been run. Harriet Tubman Village Charter School is known for high test scores, but the death of a first year teacher has contributed to a sense of deep concern. Maggie Kuhn, founder of the Grey Panthers, once said: "Dare to stand before those you fear and speak your mind, even if your voice shakes." The testimony at this meeting is riveting. And the discussion that follows is disturbing.
And the teachers spoke.
We apologize that we have not spoken earlier, as we are a staff that exists in fear of bullying, retaliation and losing our jobs.
Posted by madfloridian | Wed Apr 16, 2014, 11:29 PM (54 replies)
treated with respect.
Great piece by Anthony Cody at his Education Week blog.
Teachers: A Call to Battle for Reluctant Warriors
Subtitle: We just wanted to teach.
When I was drawn to teach in Oakland, I saw a chance to give students the chance to do hands-on experiments, to answer their own questions, and explore the natural world. On field trips to the tide pools I found out some had never even been to the Pacific Ocean, an hour's drive from their homes. I did not enter teaching to prepare students for tests. I wanted my students to think and reason for themselves.
I respect Arne Duncan as a basketball hero.
I do not respect him as the Secretary of Education. Very few educators do.
He has done a lot of harm to our public education system. Those of us who talk about it out loud are considered disloyal. Especially disloyal if we point out that it is bipartisan policy.
Good for Anthony Cody for this column.
Good for the teachers who are making their voices heard. And especially good for the parents who are joining the fray with their own voices.
Posted by madfloridian | Wed Apr 16, 2014, 12:06 AM (24 replies)
Found at Twitter
By Paul Mcclintock.
Posted by madfloridian | Sun Apr 13, 2014, 11:23 PM (9 replies)
From the Washington Post. I believe this is unfortunately true. I have seen posts responding to my OPs in effect saying that they have no job security so why should teachers have it?
The answer goes to the fact that taking away these rights is union-busting. It's happened before, and it will continue. The author points out that these attacks are happening all across the media.
The war on teachers: Why the public is watching it happen
The Answer Sheet is hosting Mark Naison.
This was written by Mark Naison, professor of African and African American Studies at Fordham University in New York and chair of the department of African and African-American Studies. He is also co-director of the Urban Studies Program, African-American History 20th Century. A version of this first appeared on the blog With A Brooklyn Accent.
Four significant paragraphs:
Let’s look at the way many in America’s shrinking middle class and battered working class view the teachers in their midst.
He also points out that "if you undermine the job security, working conditions, and wages of one group of workers, it makes it easier for employers to undermine them for all workers."
Posted by madfloridian | Thu Apr 10, 2014, 02:33 PM (114 replies)
you might understand why ophthalmologists get so much in Medicare payments. Whenever a report like this comes out (and they are valuable undeniably) I do fear that CMS will be on the defensive and start cutting payments.
This article has some good points.
Eye Doctors Say Their Profits Are Smaller Than Data Makes Them Look
More than any other specialists, ophthalmologists — not cardiologists, cancer doctors or orthopedic surgeons — were the biggest recipients of Medicare money in 2012. The 17,000 providers, most of whom are concentrated in Florida, Texas, California and New York, accounted for 7 percent — $5.6 billion — of the reimbursements to doctors and other providers. Included in the amount is $929 million for cataract surgery, about $1 billion for an expensive eye drug and $707 million for eye exams.
Ophthalmologists say that their high representation among the list of big recipients is misleading. Much of what Medicare pays them, they say, goes to the cost of the drugs they administer to patients in their offices and the bulk of that money ultimately goes to the drug companies.
My mother was 85 when she had her last cataract surgery. I was there that day when the doctor could finally see behind where the cataract had been. The degeneration was advanced. She went downhill quickly after that in every way.
There was no drug then for her, even in the 90s. Or at least Medicare did not pay for it.
The cost of one of the drugs, Lucentis, is nearly 2000 dollars per injection, usually done monthly.
All of these factors could figure in for most of the fields of medicine listed in the just released database.
There is actual fraud and then there is legitimate cost. I would hate to see a rush to judgement without taking time to find out which is which.
Posted by madfloridian | Wed Apr 9, 2014, 11:19 PM (18 replies)
to testify in 2010 at a hearing of the legislature about whether Ohio gives too much power to charter schools.
One billion dollars from public school coffers to such a company is a sure-fire way to break the back of public schools. Charter schools are the policy of both parties, though only the Republicans as a rule push vouchers.
So both sides need to take responsibility for cases like this.
White Hat was sued by 10 charter schools to gain back control from the management company. That was in 2010. Now the case is being heard by the Ohio Supreme Court.
The question is how much control can and should be ceded to White Hat
The Ohio Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal from the boards of 10 charter schools against the for-profit company that used to run them.
Here is more about that fight.
Akron's White Hat Charter School being sued by 10 of its schools for lack of accountability.
Picture from Ohio.com. White Hat was established in 1998 by Akron businessman David L. Brennan, who was a key advocate for introducing charter schools in Ohio. Like most charter schools, White Hat’s Hope Academies and Life Skills Centers are primarily funded by the state based on the number of pupils they enroll. The contracts between White Hat and the schools now suing allow the company to collect virtually all the funds and use them to run the schools.
Since 2008, Akron-based White Hat Management, has collected around $230 million to run charter schools in Ohio. The company has grown into a national chain and reports that it has about 20,000 students across the country.
White House charter operators refused to testify before a legislative hearing and claimed that they owned public property.
The suit charges that White Hat lobbied the state legislature for changes to the charter school law in 2006 that made it possible for White Hat to fire any school board that tries to sever ties with the management company.
In 2012 it was learned that White Hat Charters had gotten nearly a billion dollars in revenue from the State of Ohio.
Ohio's For-Profit White Hat Charter Schools nearing one billion in revenue from state.
Congratulations are in order to Kasich pal David Brennan and his White Hat Management company for being awarded two more charter schools by the Ohio Department of Education despite the worst list of accomplishments we may have ever seen. And with these additional schools, it is likely that White Hat schools will top $1 billion in revenue in Ohio.
Posted by madfloridian | Wed Apr 9, 2014, 04:27 PM (17 replies)
Why my family is opting out of the Common Core testing
That's the daughter who is now finishing off her dissertation for a doctorate in literature. (And yes, I know the chances are slim that she will be supporting me in my old age in the manner to which I would like to become accustomed.)
I don't remember a time in the many years in which I taught that we did not have standardized testing. Sometimes in the fall, sometimes in the spring. Sometimes in both.
The difference then was that we used them as a very important tool to see where we needed to go, what we needed to cover more extensively. They were not used as tools to fire or lay off teachers. They were never ever the only way that students were judged.
Our grade books with weekly, daily, teacher-made, or pre-ordered tests on subject matter...they still mattered. We never put honor students in remedial classes based on one single test or held students back a grade based on one test only.
Posted by madfloridian | Tue Apr 8, 2014, 11:02 PM (4 replies)