Tuesday, November 28, 2006
Reach Lawrence Albright at email@example.com
...In a study that followed North Carolina students for several years, professors Robert Bifulco and Helen Ladd found that students in charter schools actually made considerably smaller achievement gains in charter schools than they would have in traditional public schools, according to the National Education Association.
In the last analysis, whether Chris Whittle succeeds or fails with the Edison Schools initiatives is of little consequence, since the ultra-right sees him and his efforts as simply one wedge to break apart public education. There are other private contractors waiting in the wings. And the battle that must be waged to protect public education is not against Chris Whittle personally, but against the ultra-right.
At the height of the Free Speech Movement at the University of California at Berkeley in 1964, student leader Mario Savio spoke of the university as representing autocracy and viewing students as raw material to be used by corporations, which he opposed.
Today, the ultra-right seeks to privatize education and return education to the days when inequality was the norm. This is very much a political issue that reflects both their class interests and class stand. And if we're going to point the fickle finger of blame for any deficits in public education, then let's point it at a socioeconomic system that forces parents to make choices to spend more time with their children or have money to pay the bills. Let's blame a system that makes it possible for an employer not to provide health care insurance or in which the costs of living are increasing while real income is decreasing, and where a family sometimes chooses between poor nutrition or no nutrition at all. Let's point to the system where we put both our youth and our seniors at risk.
The ultra-right will continue to hammer against public education in the absence of a concerted struggle against them. Private education is to them the ultimate provider of knowledge. After all, our current president benefited from private schools. It was the best C average money could buy.
Tag: anti nclb
Monday, November 27, 2006
Monday, November 13, 2006
This is no big surprise there are not enough "punishments" in the AK's proposal.
The Associated Press
Published: November 10, 2006
Last Modified: November 10, 2006 at 08:42 AM
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) - A federal agency has denied Alaska's application to have more flexibility in judging whether schools are making adequate yearly progress under the No Child Left Behind law.
Alaska was one of 16 states vying for 10 spots in a pilot program to allow states to judge a school's progress based on the percentage improvement in its students' test scores rather than on whether the scores have hit specific targets.
Five states - Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, North Carolina and Tennessee - have already been accepted into the pilot program, leaving only five open slots. The federal Department of Education rejected Alaska's application...
Les Morse, the director of assessments and accountability with the state Department of Education, said the problem is that the current system doesn't give credit to schools if their students are not proficient but improving.
Under Alaska's proposal, Morse said, schools wouldn't be penalized as long as the students were making improvements toward becoming proficient in four years...
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Tag: anti nclb