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UK cuts school lunch program to fund their own "Race to the Top," Duncan cheers reforms (sic)

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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 01:28 AM
Original message
UK cuts school lunch program to fund their own "Race to the Top," Duncan cheers reforms (sic)
Edited on Sun Nov-07-10 01:00 AM by Hannah Bell
Duncan spent yesterday in England touring a school and visiting with his British counterpart, Secretary of State for Education Michael Gove. The Guardian interviewed the US Ed head last week. Here's a snippet from the summary:

He said: "I just have tremendous respect for the educational work and the leadership that I've seen coming from the UK and we're all working on the same issues and have the same challenges."

The talks with Gove will focus on how to "elevate" the teaching profession, bringing in committed new teachers while ensuring bad ones are eliminated. Both Obama and Duncan have taken a tough line on failing teachers, praising education officials who fired all the staff at a school in Rhode Island in February after they refused to work a longer day.

Gove and Duncan are also expected to look at how best to evaluate teachers' performance, and how to reach "historically under-served" communities.

He backed a vision of "free schools" which are funded by the taxpayer but able to adopt their own teaching methods and vary the curriculum. Duncan accused critics who said these schools would flourish at the expense of existing state schools of indulging in "phoney debates".



On the same day of Duncan's visit, Gove announced a 110 school initiative aimed at turning around "underperforming" schools. Sound familiar? It's modeled, says Gove, after the Race to the Top. And, like the cutting of food stamps to pay for the $10 billion education aid while staving off cuts to two prized pots of cash, RTTT and TIF, this 110 investment was made by cutting back on extensions to the free lunch program.

Here's a snippet from a recent Guardian article:

Money saved by scrapping free school meals for half a million primary school children will be used for a scheme under which groups compete for cash to improve England's worst-performing schools.

http://www.schoolsmatter.info/2010/11/duncan-and-rttt-e...


Starry Messenger & I recently posted a two-part series detailing the finance interests pushing the British version of school deform.

http://journals.democraticunderground.com/Hannah%20Bell...

http://journals.democraticunderground.com/Starry%20Mess...

Among the findings: the British version includes explicitly for-profit operators, some of whom are already operating for-profit schools in multiple countries.

It also includes defense contractors, some of which are subsidiaries or spin-offs of US corporations.

It also includes at least one "charity" with connections to the Rick Warren/Billy Graham/Campus Crusade for Christ fundies-+-intelligence assets.

If you still think school deform is about "the children" you're delusional or disingenuous. Sorry, you just are.

Looks like the UK & US are coordinating their moves.
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 01:29 AM
Response to Original message
1. k
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 01:30 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. k
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 01:33 AM
Response to Original message
3. k
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Ken Burch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 01:36 AM
Response to Original message
4. ...But it's ok because Arne used to tutor a couple of poor black kids in Chicago
And almost treated them like they were human beings too.

:sarcasm:
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madmax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 01:56 AM
Response to Original message
5. A race to the bottom. nt
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DonCoquixote Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 02:06 AM
Response to Original message
6. Here's a question
And yes, i address this to the UK,

The Uk knows the GOP is a disaster.

They are, even at their worst, supposed to be to our left.

So why the Hell is the UK importing bad right wing ideas?
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 03:06 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. It's a reciprocal relationship, not one of importing, really. Our high-stakes testing came from the
Brits, actually. The author of the testing fiasco is currently in the US telling us more of his great ideas: "Sir" Michael Barber himself, Tony Blair's edu-wonk:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/15/education/15face.html...

There's a great deal of collusion between the ed deform movers & shakers in both countries, going back at least to bush & blair.

It really is a nasty, undemocratic power play.
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 03:47 AM
Response to Reply #6
11. I'm puzzled myself - but not sure that it's exactly 'importing'
There is a longstanding tendency for people in England to be convinced that standards in education are going down and to be preoccupied with the need to raise them by (a) emphasizing rote-learning and 'none of these new-fangled airy-fairy methods' and (b) forcing teachers to 'improve' by means of threats, fear and competition. It goes all the way back to the very beginnings of state education in the 19th century, and the infamous 'Payment by Results' system.

In addition, there is the influence of two strands of Toryism: the traditional acceptance of the class system (state education is for the 'plebs' and private schools, such as Eton which Cameron attended, are seen as the ideal), and the Thatcherite free-market drive to privatize everything that moves. The latter also affected New Labour to some degree.

I say 'England' rather than 'UK', because such attitudes to education are less marked in Scotland and Wales, and their devolved governments had generally had a better approach to education.

There are evidently some equivalent attitudes to education in the USA, and as our countries are closely linked, and speak and write the same language, there is lots of mutual influence. We got OFSTED at about the same time as you got NCLB. It would be interesting to know where some of the current testing-obsession and education-market-obsession started in the first place!
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Smarmie Doofus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 02:54 AM
Response to Original message
7. And this always works out so well:
>>>>Looks like the UK & US are coordinating their moves.>>>>>.



K and R.
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 03:09 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. actually, i think they've been coordinating on education since bush & blair.
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/15/education/15face.html...

WASHINGTON During a decade in power in Britain, the government of Prime Minister Tony Blair made efforts to improve English schools, with some apparent successes. Because American public education faces similar challenges, like what to do with failing schools and how to recruit better teachers, some educators believe there is much to learn from Englands experience.

A few are turning to Sir Michael Barber, a senior adviser to Mr. Blair from 1997 through 2005, who received his title in recognition of his educational contributions. As a partner at McKinsey & Company, he has been advising education policymakers, including the Ohio State Board of Education and Joel I. Klein, the New York schools chancellor.

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/15/education/15face.html...


This is a rigged game. It's disgusting.

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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 03:27 AM
Response to Original message
10. AMERICANS: PLEASE DON'T TAKE ANY ADVICE FROM MICHAEL GOVE!!!
He is one of the most incompetent Education Secretaries that we've ever had, and that's against some strong competition (all right, I'd say that Sir Keith Joseph from the Thatcher government still pips him to the post).
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Richard Steele Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-07-10 04:38 AM
Response to Original message
12. K&R
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