SOUTH BRONX SCHOOL: I Read The Times Today Oh Boy.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

I Read The Times Today Oh Boy.

Is the New York Times coming around? Is the shine off the apple?

In today's Times, it was reported the charter school results are mixed. That these schools do no better or no worse then there public school counterparts. But, it seems those with the wealthy backers, the financial wherewithal seem to do better. So charters it seems are not necessarily better, it is just the money a charter gets that gives the appearance of betterness. I am going to do this in three parts. I am just to lazy and tired to do whole thing today.

Some highlights from today's article.

Executives from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, McKinsey consultants and scholars from Stanford and Harvard mingled at an invitation-only meeting of the New Schools Venture Fund at a luxury hotel in Pasadena, Calif. Founded by investors who helped start Google and Amazon, this philanthropy seeks to raise the academic achievement of poor black and Hispanic students, largely through charter schools.
Many of those at the meeting last May had worried that the Obama administration would reflect the general hostility of teachers’ unions toward charters, publicly financed schools that are independently run and free to experiment in classrooms. But all doubts were dispelled when the image of Arne Duncan, the new education secretary, filled a large video screen from Washington. He pledged to combine “your ideas with our dollars” from the federal government. “What you have created,” he said, “is a real movement.”
That movement includes a crowded clique of alpha girls and boys, including New York hedge fund managers, a Hollywood agent or two and the singers John Legend and Sting, who performed at a fund-raiser for Harlem charter schools last Wednesday at Lincoln Center. Charters have also become a pet cause of what one education historian calls a billionaires’ club of philanthropists, including Mr. Gates, Eli Broad of Los Angeles and the Walton family of Wal-Mart.
I see someones name missing! Dare I say whom? Anyway, a few comments. George Steinbrenner once said, "If more than two people know of a charity you are doing it for the wrong reason." So that is what I doubt my Whitney, and Eva, and Tommy's reasons for being involved in charters. As for the above mentioned. I doubt it as well. It is about control. Nothing more and nothing less. But notice that none of the above are teachers, yet Arne Duncan is treating them as some farsighted educators. "Their ideas?" Please why not get teachers, teachers who are at the frontline of what is happening ans ask them? Why is anyone afraid to get teachers involved in the so called ed reform movement?

fewer than one-fifth of charter schools nationally offered a better education than comparable local schools, almost half offered an equivalent education and more than a third, 37 percent, were “significantly worse.”

NO! Really?

Academically ambitious leaders of the school choice movement have come to a hard recognition: raising student achievement for poor urban children — what the most fervent call a new civil rights campaign — is enormously difficult and often expensive.

You mean they thought it would be easy? Or are they in it just to make $$$$$?

Academically ambitious leaders of the school choice movement have come to a hard recognition: raising student achievement for poor urban children — what the most fervent call a new civil rights campaign — is enormously difficult and often expensive.
Wow. That is so neat. But not original. Here is an original motivator, something I find works with the EDiots.

Jason Skeeter stood before his math students the other day as tightly coiled as a drill sergeant. He issued instructions in a loud, slightly fearsome voice, without an extra word or gesture.

Can this be a violation of chancellor's regulation A-420 pertaining to verbal abuse? Oh wait, charters have no regulations. Other than making sure the right kids come to their schools, and making sure half-witted relatives are given show jobs.

“Clap if you’re with me,” he said, clapping twice to snap students to attention. The class responded with a ritual double-stomp of the feet and a hand clap.
I think it would have been really cool if the teacher, Jason Skeeter said this instead, "Clap your hand if you believe in Tinkerbell." Now that would have been inspiring. It helped Tink.

At Williamsburg Collegiate, everything is measured, everything is compared, graphed and displayed publicly

Yes, this happens before school when all the male teachers compare, graph, and display themselves publicly. Mr Skeeter is in the lead.

A rigidly structured environment is part of the formula the school believes produces success.

As was so at the Nationalpolitische Erziehungsanstalten. Achtung, baby.

The curriculum is constantly adjusted.

Wow, they get to adjust their curriculum but we are stuck with Everyday Mathematics. Oh joy.
fifth graders began the year, their first at the school, below grade level, his goal is for all to pass the state exam.

Why in Westchester County passing is considered a 3 or a 4, but in NYC passing is a considered scoring a 2? Can someone clarify this for me.

So this goes on and blabbers on about Cleveland charters, I don't care. But they have no big bucks donors.

The administration’s Race to the Top competition, which waves the carrot of $4.3 billion in education aid

The states need to rent out and view "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" and see what happens to people once their greed takes over. Here is an example. Captain Culpepper ruined his life.

The club of millionaires and billionaires who support them includes Mr. Gates; Mr. Broad, whose fortune is from home building and financial services; Michael Dell of Dell Computer; Doris Fisher, who, with her late husband, Donald, founded the Gap; and the Walton family.

No regular folk. Why is that? I also notice a certain someones name missing.

Rather than starting their own schools, these philanthropists largely went looking for successful charters and provided money for expansion.

Why not put the money is failing charter schools, or better yet, put the money where it is needed most in the inner city schools and neighborhoods.

Celebrities who support charters have also picked carefully.

Of course. How about Angelina Jolie, who I believe only does what she does for the publicity, adopt a school?

An independent study recently backed the claims to high achievement made by New York City charters, which have benefited from the strong support of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the schools chancellor, Joel I. Klein

This has never made sense to me. It's like if the owners of Dunkin Donuts decided to help out Krisy Kreme.

Ok, I am done for the night. Read the article. Read me. I might comment on the rest of it tomorrow. I am tired.

4 comments:

primadonna said...

Even the GAP is involved??? God I hate that store even more..

Anonymous said...

I thought my Dell computer sucked; now it's even worse since I know why.....

primadonna said...

If I knew Dell was involved, I wouldn't have bought their laptop. Maybe we should boycott these companies?! How can we get a full list of the foundations involved in school "reform"??

Twitney Shillson said...

Primadonna, the NYSUT paper had a piece about corporations/companies that donated to charters. Off the top of my head I recall that Overstock.com's founder was a big supporter, but that was the only one I'd used in the past, despite being a hedgefund billionaire prat.