I want to stay one more day on education as more and more energy in protest and organization grows across the country. I look locally at Baltimore because I know we are ground zero for this Wall Street privatizing with Johns Hopkins and NYC's Bloomberg pushing these reforms in Maryland.
The autocratic school system I described yesterday will affect 90-95% of all Americans so do not fall for the ploy that only the underserved will be relegated to this corporate vocational K-college. The middle-class know these 1% are pushing them ever lower in wages as to be part of this scenario. AN INJUSTICE FOR ONE WILL BECOME AN INJUSTICE FOR ALL!
Cities across America have parents and citizens shouting against this reform.....even Louisiana where charters were thrust full force by their governor is fighting back. In Baltimore and Maryland all of the justice organizations and leaders that should be shouting are captured and silent and the media never allow any dissent be publicized. Below you'll see yet another private non-profit with national reach being sent in to persuade the underserved that this Obama/Bill Gates education reform is good for the underserved. The organization is called 50CAN and in Maryland it is called Maryland CAN. It is an Obama political organization funded by Bill Gates designed to press these charter, Teach for America, school closings, and testing and evaluation procedures forward. WE ALL KNOW WHERE THIS WILL LEAD AND NO ONE WANTS TO GO THERE.
We again are seeing more data and research that these programs are not working. I showed yesterday that the very charters that are failing are fighting to expand and the very people failing are the ones being given voice. SUPPORT YOUR TEACHER'S UNIONS AND ORGANIZE 'PARENTS ACROSS AMERICA' GROUPS TO FIGHT THESE REFORMS.
THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH PUBLIC EDUCATION THAT SUFFICIENT FUNDING WILL NOT CORRECT!
Here is an activist friend from Pennsylvania who acknowledges the same is happening there......THIS IS THIRD WAY NEO-LIBERALS DOING THIS FOLKS.....SEND THEM PACKING BY RUNNING AND VOTING FOR LABOR AND JUSTICE!!!!!!
Ugh yes. PennCan exists and most recently made news doing a poll where they said our governor - dubbed the most vulnerable governor in the us because of his 20% approval ratings - could recover by going after the teachers union. Terrible here! But also not too bright either.
They are promoting cyber charters, vouchers and universal enrollment in Philly and PA. They also helped bring a stupid NCTQ report here. As a local arm of 50Can they are a cookie cutter operation - not responsive to or caring of local need.
IN MARYLAND ALL POLITICS IS CAPTURED AND ESPECIALLY FOR THE UNDERSERVED.....ALL JUSTICE GROUPS WORK AGAINST PEOPLE OF COLOR AND NOT FOR THEM. MARYLAND CAN IS SIMPLY A BILL GATES/OBAMA PRIVATIZING ORGANIZATION THAT SEEKS TO SELL CHARTERS AND TEACH FOR AMERICA JUST AS RAHM EMMANUEL IS DOING IN CHICAGO....ONLY THESE ARE BLACK LEADERS DOING IT!
Posted at 12:58 PM ET, 01/18/2012
Maryland’s ‘achievement gap’ highlighted by new advocacy group
By Michael Alison Chandler Washington Post
A week after Maryland was named the Number One state in the nation for public education by Education Week magazine, a new advocacy group released its own report highlighting Maryland as one of the worst performing education states when it comes to achievement gaps.
“Success masks a dark underbelly of Maryland student achievement, ” said the report, the State of Maryland Public Education. The group unveiled its report at a press conference with state lawmakers in Annapolis Tuesday afternoon.
Among its findings (based on results of the National Assesssment of Educational Progress):
* Maryland has the second largest disparity in the country between low-income students and their wealthier classmates on the 8th grade math test
* Eighteen percent of African-American eighth graders scored at least proficient on the math exam, compared to 56 percent of white students — a racial achievement gap that has more than doubled since 1990
* Maryland has the fourth largest socio-economic disparity in the country on the corresponding 8th grade English test
“We have a lot of be proud of in Maryland when it comes to educating our kids...But we struggle to serve all Maryland students,” said Curtis Valentine, a former teacher and executive director of the new group MarylandCAN, in a press release. “We are home to deep achievement gaps between the haves and have-nots in our state.
The group is part of the national education reform group 50CAN, which advocates for many of the same kinds of reforms that have been promoted by the Obama administration, including encouraging charter schools, closing failing schools and tying teacher evaluations to test scores.
The national group has its roots in an education reform effort in Connecticut, starting in 2005. Now there are also branches in Rhode Island, Minnesota, Illinois, and New York, as well as Maryland.
MarylandCAN laid out three priorities for the 2012 legislative session: to increase funding for early childhood education, to pass a bill that would protect employees from punishment if they miss work to attend a school conference, and to update Maryland’s charter school law, which many charter advocates view as weak.
Start-up funding for MarylandCAN comes from the Walton Family Foundation and the Gates Foundation.
As we see below there is a long line of misinformation being used to promote these charter schools as being more successful than they are. Talk with an underserved parent that is being made to send a child to a charter and most will say they know these schools are inferior and want public schools to remain in their neighborhoods. In Baltimore the Baltimore City School website makes it hard to find the specific data regarding student population, test scores, and other demographics for a handful of charters that we know are not following the rules and/or are not succeeding and they are being allowed to fall off the map so to speak. I was told I could enter the Maryland database for some of the data the Baltimore database failed to show, but for the most part the information was missing and no alarms were sounded.
The problem is that we are watching schools selecting students according to preferred status and then other schools are being attached to vocational tracks while upper-class private schools are now going to public funding getting the largest slice of the public funding pie. IT IS A MESS. When I look closely at the test score stats you see students categorized as performing/advanced ........getting the highest per-student funding in this tiered funding system.....and you know that either they must have underserved/low performing students they are not reporting or they are selecting these students out.
ALL OF THE DATA IS SKEWED WHEN YOU HAVE SCHOOLS FAILING TO REPORT REAL DATA ON STUDENT POPULATIONS BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT FOLLOWING THE RULES.
THIS PROBLEM EXISTS IN BALTIMORE AND NO JUSTICE ORGANIZATIONS ARE SHOUTING LOUDLY THAT THE UNDER-SERVED ARE BEING DENIED EQUAL ACCESS AND OPPORTUNITY AND THERE IS NO OUTCRY THAT ALL THIS WILL LEAD TO THE END OF DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA!
Missing the Real Story on Student Attrition at Charters Oct. 4, 2012
by Christina Collins
Comments Off Filed under: Charter Schools
At a time when the question of how to best serve our neediest students at all schools is a key focus at the local and national levels, media analyses of the impact of student attrition at charters and district schools can be a useful contribution to the discussion. Unfortunately, an article recently published by SchoolBook misses the key point of this question in its failure to acknowledge that charter attrition’s effects come not from the number or type of students who leave, but from most charters’ decisions not to replace those students.
Gary Miron did a great job addressing this issue in his recent study on KIPP, and Mathematica recently confirmed some of his key findings (though they argued that the impact of these practices were relatively minimal).
In general, Miron and others have shown that both urban charters and urban district schools serve populations with high rates of student mobility — every year, relatively high percentages of students change schools in New York and other cities, and students who change schools (in general) tend to be lower achieving and have higher needs. This is what the SchoolBook article focuses on — if you just look at the percentage and type of students who leave schools in any given year, you’re not going to find big differences between district and charter schools.
The key difference is that in district schools, the students who transfer out are replaced by equally needy students who transfer in, including in higher grades. Overall, this keeps enrollment numbers and overall percentages of high-need students fairly stable — in a K-5 district school, if you have 50 kindergartners arrive in 2012, you’ll see roughly 50 5th graders graduate six years later. Not all those students will have started as kindergartners, but those who left will have been replaced by students with fairly similar demographics and achievement levels.
In contrast, even charter advocates admit that most charters choose not to replace students who leave with incoming transfer students, especially in upper grades. This means that at charters, the neediest students are the most likely to leave before graduation, but either they aren’t replaced or they’re replaced in very limited numbers. This is why you’ll often tend to see graduating classes at charters which are much smaller than entering classes.
Based on what we know about the demographics of students who transfer compared to those who stay in schools, the upper-grade students who remain in a charter with high attrition will tend to be those with relatively lower needs and higher academic achievement. In NYC, we’ve shown that the charter middle schools with the highest attrition and non-replacement rates are also the same ones which show the greatest increases in scores in their highest grades. (THIS IS GIVING ONE SCHOOL BETTER ACHIEVEMENT DATA WHILE THE SCHOOLS PLAYING BY THE RULES ARE DEEMED FAILING OR BAD....AND THEY ARE OFTEN THE PUBLIC SCHOOL) The Mathematica study showed that at KIPP, incoming transfer students tended to come in with higher achievement levels than students who transferred into district schools, a pattern also noted by the principal of the charter school highlighted in the SchoolBook article when discussing his school’s test score increases.
The other element of this that the article doesn’t fully address is the impact of the different discipline codes at the charters. The quotes from the parents and charters leaders in the article are fairly contradictory on this point — they acknowledge that disagreements about discipline were a primary factor in making these students leave the school, but don’t define this as being “kicked out.” The lack of a good way to either measure (1) how frequently these “nudge out” transfers happen or (2) the impact the exit of students with discipline issues has on the remaining students’ academic performance are major problems with the research in this area. Some charters do have high rates of suspensions, but lower-level types of discipline are much harder to track.
Overall, the fact that this article doesn’t even acknowledge that practices around attrition and replacement represent a legitimate difference between charters and district schools makes its analysis significantly less useful and more misleading than those from the Charter School Center itself or the researchers at Mathematica — and very disappointing.
If you do not believe the intent is to hand these charters off to corporations ......'but these are public charters you say'.....please wake up. Corporate charters are forming all across the country and they will come to your neck of the woods!
Letter: Charter school act puts education in corporate hands
Posted: March 23, 2013 - 4:20pm
The proposed Kansas Public Charter Schools Act would basically allow an unlimited number of corporately run schools, which would have the most up-to-date equipment and draw from the elite in the educational field, to compete against the cash-starved public schools for tax dollars. It will allow for preferential treatment of the students of the owners, donors, and staff, with a lottery for everyone else. What parents wouldn’t want to have their student go to a publicly funded, corporately run school that will guarantee success?
It will cause major unemployment of teachers and allied professionals in established public schools throughout Kansas. The act allows students throughout the state to attend any publicly funded charter school. All they have to do to receive preferential treatment is have rich parents donate, like they do at colleges, to the charter school.
This bill is fraught with potential problems, but is reflective of the conservative-controlled Legislature, which hates public employees and advocates for the privatization of government functions.
I want to remind people of this headline in 2010......ALL OF THIS WAS FOUND TO BE FALSE. Much of the test scores were found to have been inflated, mysterious drops in scores in many schools from this 2008-9 gain appeared and were dramatic. Even the dropout rate was false as all they did was change the way they categorized students as dropouts. IT WAS ALL HYPERBOLE AND IT WAS DONE TO PROVIDE SUPPORT FOR ALONZO'S AND WALL STREET'S REFORM METHODS....MAKING BUSINESSES OF PUBLIC SCHOOLS!
IF ANY PERSON IN A JOB DID AS MUCH SKEWING OF DATA TO LOOK AS THOUGH THEY ACHIEVED GAINS THEY WOULD BE FIRED. SINCE ALONZO IS A WALL STREET GUY.....LYING, CHEATING, AND STEALING IS THE 'WIN AT ALL COST' WAY OF DOING BUSINESS. HE LEFT WITH SCHOOLS IN BALTIMORE A MESS AND ALMOST ALL PARENTS ANGRY!
THEY ARE STILL PADDING THE DATA!
Baltimore wins urban school award The 83,000-student Baltimore City Public Schools stands as the top urban school district in the land. The district is the 2010 winner of the CUBE Award, receiving the award at CUBE’s annual conference in Baltimore on Saturday.
Baltimore has made double-digit state test score gains, significantly improved the performance of minority students, increased public support in measurable ways, and sharply cut the number of students dropping out of school.
The district has made particular progress since 2007, when the school board hired former New York City Deputy Chancellor Andres Alonso to be the district’s CEO.
In three years, Baltimore has made record progress in closing major achievement gaps and improving the performance of various subgroups. For example:
# Special education students in grades three to eight have improved their reading scores on state tests by nearly 30 percentage points since 2007. English language learners have made even more progress in reading, improving by 39 percentage points.
# In math, those same special education students improved by nearly 28 percentage points during that three-year time span. English language learners improved by 39 percentage points — and actually outperformed their English-speaking peers in math.
# For Hispanic students, Baltimore has narrowed the achievement gap by 38 percentage points in reading and more than 40 percentage points in math since 2007.
# African-American test scores have grown by 21 percentage points in reading and 26 percentage points in math during the last three years.
“From day one as CEO of Baltimore City Public Schools, I have felt very fortunate to serve this board,” said Alonso. “It is a board that is first and foremost focused on our kids, and that supports every effort to give schools the resources they need to do right by our kids. Thanks to this board’s leadership, we have been able to build the necessary infrastructure to begin to truly transform our schools, and we are now seeing the results: Our students have posted three straight years of record achievement gains, and the larger Baltimore community is rallying around our students and our schools like never before.”