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Sat Jan 4, 2014, 06:04 PM

RAVITCH: Why Arenít Elite Prep Schools Following Corporate Reforms?

This is the most obvious evidence that corporate education reform has more to do with corporate profits than educating our kids: the best prep schools, where the "reformers" send their kids, don't do it.

Why do we continue to let the sociopaths on Wall Street commodify our kids and almost literally chase teachers out of the classroom?

Isn't it time to call bullshit to politicians faces and chase them out of office if they keep backing this.

A lot of Obama's policies can be defended as the best he good do given the opposition, but on education "reform," he can't blame Republicans for twisting his arm, and it will be a stain on his presidency that will be fully his responsibility.

This is a terrific article about the elite prep schools and the fact that they do not follow the "reforms" that are now pushed by the U.S. Department of Education, the Gates Foundation, the Broad Foundation, and other corporate reformers.

Here are some quotes from the article:

Go ahead and do an online search of the countryís top prep schools, or check out this list from Forbes. Peruse some of the school websites and do a search for anything that mainstream education reformers suggest we implement in your neighborhood public school. Try, for example, common core state standards. How about data-driven instruction? Or, what about two weeks worth of mandated high-stakes, standardized state tests, preceded by weeks, if not months, of benchmarks, short-cyles, and pre-assessments?


Are they likely to hire teachers without advanced degrees?

Check out the proportion of teachers at those schools who possess advanced degrees. At Horace Mann in the Bronxówhere 36 percent of students are accepted at an Ivy League school, Stanford, or MITó94 percent of the teachers have advanced degrees. Now, who was it that said rewarding teachers with advanced degrees is a waste of money? Ah yes, our Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan. How far do you think Mr. Duncanís argument would get with parents who examine a potential school's "Ivy/MIT/Stanford pipeline" percentage score? Not very far.


So why are the prep schools avoiding Duncan's great ideas?

If the reforms mandated by Departments of Education and fawned over by upstart think-tankers were as fantastic as advised again and again, then you can bet that every single one of the country's best prep schools would be implementing them as rapidly as possible.They're not, and you shouldn't accept them either.

http://wp.me/p2odLa-6ud


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Reply RAVITCH: Why Arenít Elite Prep Schools Following Corporate Reforms? (Original post)
yurbud Jan 2014 OP
Laelth Jan 2014 #1
Lydia Leftcoast Jan 2014 #17
Laelth Jan 2014 #18
Jefferson23 Jan 2014 #2
erpowers Jan 2014 #3
Jefferson23 Jan 2014 #4
yurbud Jan 2014 #7
Jefferson23 Jan 2014 #13
yurbud Jan 2014 #14
Jefferson23 Jan 2014 #5
DamnYankeeInHouston Jan 2014 #6
yurbud Jan 2014 #16
Igel Jan 2014 #8
truth2power Jan 2014 #9
yurbud Jan 2014 #11
TheKentuckian Jan 2014 #10
erpowers Jan 2014 #12
yurbud Jan 2014 #15

Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sat Jan 4, 2014, 06:11 PM

1. It is a stain, and it is his responsibility.

Arne Duncan is terrible. I don't want to believe that President Obama actually favors these privatization policies, but it appears he does. We all make mistakes, and our President is no exception.

-Laelth

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Response to Laelth (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 02:50 PM

17. As far as I can tell, Obama never attended a U.S. public school in his life

He attended a Catholic school in Indonesia. His high school was Punahou Academy, THE elite prep school in Honolulu.

In addition, his daughters attended the University of Chicago's Lab School, and then Sidwell Friends' Academy in Washington.

Michelle Obama evidently grew up attending public schools (her bio mentions attending a magnet school), but President Obama himself has no direct knowledge of public schools.

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Response to Lydia Leftcoast (Reply #17)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 03:00 PM

18. That's too bad, but it does explain some things. n/t

-Laelth

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sat Jan 4, 2014, 07:14 PM

2. Did you have trouble getting to the Top Prep school list? I want very

much to read it...maybe I am overlooking the obvious..but I have not been
able to find it.

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #2)

Sat Jan 4, 2014, 08:32 PM

3. 2010 List

The link below is to an article about the 2010 list and another link to the full list for that year.

http://www.forbes.com/2010/04/29/best-prep-schools-2010-opinions-private-education.html

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Response to erpowers (Reply #3)

Sat Jan 4, 2014, 09:22 PM

4. Thank you!

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #2)

Sat Jan 4, 2014, 11:09 PM

7. what do you mean? Do you think it's a mystery which schools the wealthy send their kids too?

If you live or work on the Westside of LA, you figure out pretty quickly what it is even if you don't have kids.

I imagine it's the same in most parts of the country.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #7)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 09:48 AM

13. No not at all, I was referring to the link..I was not able to get to

the content. Another DU member linked it for me. This OP is important as
it demonstrates very well the disconnect of an advanced quality
based education with all the safe guards in place. i.e. teachers with
advanced degrees, small class size and of course their rejection of
Arnie Duncan's policies regarding testing as a means of teaching.

I cross posted this in the education group, it's an excellent read.

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #13)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 12:38 PM

14. ah! I have a bit more time today, so I'll copy the links from the Ravitch article

thanks for the clarification.

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sat Jan 4, 2014, 09:26 PM

5. Highly recommend..I see this as an indictment of the fraud being perpetuated on public schools.

snip*If you think there's time for all of this, you'd be mistaken. Most social studies and science instruction ends as early as January for a March test, if it's taught at all. In some cases, it isn't. In other cases, art, music, physical education, and recess are also dropped, or at least taken away from students whose scores are lowest. I wonder if any notification of such adjustments to the academic schedule are included in the glossy brochures for the country's top prep schools.

I have another interesting suggestion: Check out the proportion of teachers at those schools who possess advanced degrees. At Horace Mann in the Bronxówhere 36 percent of students are accepted at an Ivy League school, Stanford, or MITó94 percent of the teachers have advanced degrees. Now, who was it that said rewarding teachers with advanced degrees is a waste of money? Ah yes, our Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan. How far do you think Mr. Duncanís argument would get with parents who examine a potential school's "Ivy/MIT/Stanford pipeline" percentage score? Not very far.

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sat Jan 4, 2014, 11:08 PM

6. The Corporate For Profit Destruction of U.S. Public Schools

I left public school teaching in May after 33 years because I just couldn't bear it any longer. I'm teaching at my house. I haven't given a single test. I have always been vehemently pro public schools. It pains me now when I have to tell parents to look at private.

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Response to DamnYankeeInHouston (Reply #6)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 12:53 PM

16. my wife is a public school teacher and is more adamant about putting our kids in private schools

than me.

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 01:07 AM

8. She knows quite well.

The top 25% of students don't need and in many cases are hurt by most of the reforms. By which I mean reforms since the the '60s--long before all the "corporate" influence on school reform.

Since then the emphasis has been on the bottom 25%. On the "achievement gap" as its been called for the last 20 years.

The reason varies. In some cases it's because the country needs trained workers to keep the economy going or to rival the __________ (insert economic or military foe here: The USSR, Japan, China, backwardness and the need to build a bright, shining future--whatever).

In other cases it's because there's an intolerable skew along the lines of__________ (insert problem demographic factor here: class, race, ethnicity, gender, geography, SES, etc.)

Even one of the driving needs in NCLB was to identify the racial/etc. component of the low-achieving students and monitor their progress. To hold states accountable for raising the test scores of the most vulnerable, lowest achieving populations. It's how a liberal like Ted Kennedy could team up with a quasi-conservative like Bush II. Same goal, different kind of motivation.

Data-driven instruction is to identify the students that need help, the areas they need it in, and which teachers or methods are able to teach that area to those students. If you just teach the top 50%, you suck as a teacher.

And so it goes. Ravitch should know this. History was her strong suit for years, and she was involved with the rationale for NCLB.

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 01:28 AM

9. Thank you for posting this, Yurbud. I'll read the links tomorrow...

In my school district we are going into 2014 with FOUR Tea Party members on our school board.

Yeah...I keep wondering WTF the people of this community were thinking.

The public school system in this country is being dismantled, day by day, and the majority of people are totally clueless as to what's happening. And it's virtually impossible to bring them up to speed on how alarming the situation is because most have the attention span of about 30 seconds, at best.

We are so screwed.

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Response to truth2power (Reply #9)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 03:10 AM

11. 30 seconds...that might be a bit generous

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 02:39 AM

10. Because the intention is actually to educate those kids

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 09:47 AM

12. Surprised By All the Celebrities

I was surprised by all the actors and actresses who had gone to these schools. The list of top prep school had a rather large amount of famous actors and actresses who had attended those schools.

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Response to erpowers (Reply #12)

Sun Jan 5, 2014, 12:43 PM

15. I teach community college in Santa Monica and sometimes get students who went

to some of the better private schools in LA.

I can usually pick them out because of the books they have read and concepts they know, including stuff like Howard Zinn.

I got the impression that the educational methods in those schools looked more like the best of college than the worst of public K-12.

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