The Sandia Report – the suppressed report that could have kept us reform-free

The answer to problems in education lies in fixing the opportunity gap, not the achievement gap.

Click on this Perspectives on Ed in America to see the Sandia National Laboratory Report in its entirety.

Perspectives on Ed in America

The Gorilla in the Room: Part 2 in the Series: How did Anti-Public School Corporate Reformers become the Dominant Force in Education Reform?

Welcome to Part 2 of The War Report’s Back to the Future Series on the Common Core. In this episode, Dr. Deborah Owens will answer questions from our previous blog and address what she calls “the gorilla in the room.” The following is Dr. Owen’s synopsis of the upcoming show:

By Deborah Owens

The Common Core represents the “gorilla in the room.”  This gorilla has further facilitated a raft of pro-corporate education reform initiatives that support charter schools, Teach for America, Draconian high stakes testing, VAM models for teacher accountability, and data mining of students’ personal and academic information — each of which lines the pockets of Wall Street entrepreneurs at the expense of our locally controlled public schools and, most importantly, our nation’s most precious resource, our children.

Click the link below to listen to why Dr. Owens calls Common Core the Gorilla in the Room:

The Gorilla in the Room War Report Podcast 

The following excerpts from The Origins… illustrate the third way of governance as it was developing in the 1990s.

In a first-rate example of how the corporations began their full-out assault on public education, here’s a quote from former IBM corporate superstar Lou Gerstner — the corporate superstar who sponsored the Palisades conference of corporate and gubernatorial CEOs that birthed ACHIEVE — in his opening remarks at the 1995 National Governors Association (NGA) meeting where Gerstner was an honored guest. He said, “I’m here because of Willie Sutton. Willie Sutton robbed banks, the story goes, because he realized that’s where the money is. I’m here because this is where the power is – the power to reform – no, to revolutionize – the US public school system.” (The Origins of the Common Core, p. 118).

In February 1996, one month before the IBM sponsored Palisades conference, Lehman Brothers sponsored the Education Industry Investment Conference. According to Douglas Dewey, “Conferees were regaled with new opportunities in a $600 billion industry, including preschool, K-12, post-secondary, and training and development.” For Dewey, writing for “The Freeman,” corporate entrepreneurship in the education field held the promise of finally eliminating government from education completely, “as public confidence in government schooling continues its inexorable collapse, and the whiff of billions begins stirring in the air, the savvy investor will focus his attention on the greatest emerging market in decades and treat government schools as just another competitor to blow out of the water.” (from The Origins of the Common Core, p. 129)

In summary, this series will suggest ways for all Americans who support their locally controlled schools to unite in efforts to reclaim the sacred ground of our democratic and locally controlled public schools.  The conclusion of the first two programs will set the tone for the third part of the series in which diverse forces, which are heroically challenging corporate education reformers and their governmental allies, engage in collaborative discussion that will unite and energize America in its efforts to marshal a unified front to reclaim America’s democratic locally controlled public schools.

To learn more and read a complete Bio about Dr. Owens, please visit her website Public Schools Central for up-to-date information on the Common Core and the Corporate Ed Reform Agenda. Here is the link for the BBS Live Radio Show and Former and Future Podcasts: The War Report on Public Education Here is the link to The War Report Facebook Page: The War Report on Public Education Facebook Group Twitter: @WarRepPubEd

Here is the podcast link from last week’s show: How did Anti-public School Corporate Reformers become the Dominant Force in Education Reform? Hosted by Dr. James Avington Miller, Jr and Special Guest Dr. Deborah Owens. This is the first in a three or four part series based on Dr. Owen’s book. If you missed last week’s show please listen to the podcast, read the summary from the blog, and then leave feedback in the blog comments section. Thank you!

Please join Deb Owens and James Avington Miller Jr. this Sunday, April 5, 2015 to discuss the Willie Sutton-like takeover of public education in America.

 

War Report Team

Reporting from the Front Lines

Boots on the Ground

Professor Joe Nashville’s Witty Response to a Letter from Pearson Publishing

TN Professor Joe Nashville, who previously published a satirical review of the former Commissioner of Tn Ed ( Kevin “Michelle Rhee” Huffman ) via Edushyster called  Tennessee’s Fool of Merit, is back with gaffs and laughs to expose the faux rhetoric of Pearson Publishing. Recently, Professor Nashville received this missive from a Pearson Publishing Sales Rep. In a fit of pique and witty inspiration, he revised the letter to reflect the true message hidden in the, er, rhetorical spin that is Pearson Publishing’s calling card. Read and Enjoy!

Click on the links to make them larger, then use your handy dandy magnifying glass to zoom in.

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Joe Nashville is a teacher and “edu-oke” artist. You can follow him at twitter (https://twitter.com/Joe_Nashville) or read his fine lyrics at http://joenashville.jimdo.com

Blogger’s Disclaimer: I am a Literature teacher, not a journalist. What you get is what you get. Want better blogging, read a real journalist.

Can We Snatch Defeat From the Jaws of Victory ?

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by Dr. James Avington Miller, Jr

The War on Public Ed, schools, teachers, students, parents/families/cities is raging on all fronts. They, the Corporate State Elite and their Machiavellian Agenda, are Winning. Years of planning, preparing, and a war chest that is in the billions/trillions if need, they are all but assured of victory. For them its just a matter of time before they can stand on the deck of another air craft carrier and declare victory ( like Bush II did ). The resistance was slow to recognize they/we were being warred upon. When we awaken to reality, it was almost too late. Now, we are slowly awakening and resisting. The only issue/question that remains: Can We Snatch Defeat From the Jaws of Victory? – Dr. James Avington Miller Jr.
The War Report on Public Education

Pearson is Peeking at Student Data : Bob Braun and Dr. Miller expose Pearson as Peeping Tom

Podcast the Sunday after Bob Braun broke the Pearson Scandal:

Part 1 here:

http://bbsradio.com/content/war-report-public-education-march-15-2015
Podcast from this Sunday’s show – March 22- on Pearson and SpyGate Part 2-

Host Dr. James Avington Miller Jr. Special Guests: Bob Braun’s LedgerKen PrevitiLeonie Haimson and Deborah Duncan Owens

http://bbsradio.com/…/war-report-public-education-march-22-…

 pearson-learning

Becoming Prisoners in This Education War

“Because all of us might already be in the way of becoming prisoners in this education war.”

Two nights ago, at an Orlando middle school’s “FSA parents’night,” I was accompanying Spanish-speaking parents. A teacher, the principal and even a counselor did a great job explaning “the beauty of FSA” and the computer test coming up next week.

The three professionals in front of us were being exceptionally good soldiers doing a good job making sure neither those they are serving (the students) and themselves (and their families) do not get killed in this education war.

Knowing the harm that these tests, and the FSA EOC do to students, teachers, principals, everybody at a school, and even the school itself, I couldn’t help to feel for all of them, but specifically last night for the teachers and the principal.

I asked several questions to which they answered knowing (I read their body language) none of them are good for students, teachers/princpal, and the school, but like good soldiers, they were following instructions to the “t.” They were, like any other human in their situation would have done, defending their post. And defend it they did with care and professionalism and for a particular care for the children they knew were not really being served by the abusive accountability system.

When they presented the “State mandated, locally developed EOC” tests as not of the high-stake test kind, I raised my hand once again. “They are high-stake tests because the purpose of the EOC are specifically to evaluate teachers (as per a PPT slide confirmed),” I said. Their eyes told me the whole story. But they could do nothing about it. Their lives, their families’, their bread and butter are in stake here too as much as our children’s future is.

They are soldiers alright. But like the children–and parents– they are also prisoners of war following instructions they would rather not do. Their stoicism showed exactly that: “endurance of pain or hardship without a display of feelings and without complaint.”

HispanEduca’s work is directly with Spanish-speaking parents. Our focus has always been these parents who have been forgotten by many.

However, that night I realized that if we do not join the prison students and teachers are thanks to the accountability system of which Republicans and Democrats are equally to blame, we all are going to end in God knows what kind of social prison.

Because all of us might already be in the way of becoming prisoners in this education war.

11020405_10152754246547169_1249769738_n-2 Lourdes, and grandson, Ben, who is in Kindergarten in CA

Check out http://hispaneduca.org for more information on HispanEduca and the services they offer the Hispanic Community.

Bronx Principal Jamaal Bowman Debunks Common Charter School Myths

This article was originally posted as a FB reply, then as a personal note, then as a blog on With a Brooklyn Accent,

http://withabrooklynaccent.blogspot.com/2015/02/bronx-principal-jamaal-bowman-debunks.html

then in LA Progressive http://www.laprogressive.com/charter-school-myths/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+laprogressive+%28The+LA+Progressive%29&utm_content=FaceBook

AND NOW FINALLY- the place it all started: The War Report FB group post:

Jamaal Bowman was responding to this question posted in the War Report on Public Education Group after the internet radio show on the School to Prison Pipeline.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheWarReportOnPubEd/
Discussion Topic:

What do you think?

Charter schools are the best thing that has happened to public schools because they have forced public schools to “wake up” and for public school teachers to begin teaching better, due to the competition brought by Charters, than they have in previous years.

Please discuss – this was a topic raised in a group message after the School to Prison Pipeline show:

Podcast link for the Show from Sunday:
http://bbsradio.com/content/war-report-public-education-february-22-2015

By Jamaal Bowman

Good evening. Please allow me to indulge for a moment. First, good schools are good schools. I don’t care what we call them. The most important thing in a child’s life after a parent is a good teacher, coach, or mentor. When I say good schools, I don’t mean schools that simply have good test scores. I’m speaking of schools that get good scores, as well as develop the character and passions of their students toward self actualization.
Allow me to debunk a few charter school myths. I don’t know if this applies to all charter schools but definitely the ones I have some experience with. First let me say that studies show if a parent is savvy and passionate about education, regardless of race, class, or educational background, their child is more likely to graduate high school and college. Charters (at least the ones I have experience with), make sure that parents prove how serious they are before even giving their child a chance of getting in. For example, one charter that I know, mandates (not using this word lightly), that parents attend 5-6 meetings before even entertaining the possibility of the child making it to the lottery. These are obviously parents that value education in the home. If parents miss one meeting, no lottery. On the other hand, district schools have to take everyone. The savvy parent AND the struggling parent without meeting mandates. A parent can go through an entire school year without attending a meeting and the child is guaranteed a spot in a district school.
Further, in case you didn’t know, parents also sign contracts in many charters to ensure homework is done, meetings are attended, and certain behavioral execrations are met. If the parent or child breaks the contract, the child can be kicked out of school. I know. I’ve seen it done while “interning” at a charter school.
Lastly, charters can fire teachers and have extremely high turnover rates. From my conversations and observations of charter schools, I’ve heard many of the policies and procedures be called “inhumane.” This could be why so many teachers can’t last anymore than two or three years in many charters. Ironically, these charters serve as a perfect pipeline for TFA –mocking two year commitment.
Based on what I know, as they are currently constituted, charters, TFA, and yearly standardized testing are wrong for our high need communities. We should stop funding them all unless they agree to make major adjustments to how they do business. Why? Because that money can be spent on giving all students a quality holistic education. Charters, TFA, and yearly testing infuse anxiety, disunity, and even worst, standardization into the psyche of society. They are trying to recreate a 21st century idea of “empire.” Keep the masses, and “lower class” under control while the elite continue to rule. A standardized mindset will always be controlled. Whereas in schools like Riverdale Country School, there are not state standardized assessment, no TFA and no need for a charter, and they are taught to lead and change the world.
Consider KIPP’S first graduating class. Ranked fifth in NYC in mathematics in the 8th grade, but only 21% graduated college. Why? Because KIPP test prepped the kids to death and the kids never built their character or learned to manage their own freedom. KIPP and many charters standardize and try to control everything from how kids walk through the halls to how they ask to go to the bathroom. But teaching and learning is organic; it is human. When are we gonna ask ourselves why must poor communities of color be treated like this, whereas middle class and upper class parents would NEVER go for this treatment!
WE HAVE TO hold politicians and private citizens who invest in education accountable to the true needs of our at-risk communities. We must give our communities a true voice. If charters, TFA, and the state really cared about our children being their very best, show us, by investing in daycare, Montessori, music, sports, counselors and everything in between. Charters should take all children and TFA should change everything! If not, the powers that be will continue to fatten up the district school kids to be slaughtered and fed to their private school bosses as adults.
For the rest we have jail cells waiting for them. ‪#‎wemustunite‬