SOUTH BRONX SCHOOL: July 2010

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Tilson's And Klein's Slips Are Starting To Show


Are we finally starting to see behind the curtain? Is the proverbial slip starting to show? Is the shine off the apple? Are the wheels coming off the cart?Why am I asking all these questions? Because....................

It seems the Bloom/Klein ship be sinking. Or at the very least taking on water. Not surprising. Usually this is what happens when one overplays their hand as Bloomberg did getting a third term. This is what happens when one can't see the forest through the trees as Klein does. Sooner or later the autocratic style comes back and bites you. People are being bitten right now.

But before I go on, let's not forget karma. When you bully, cajole, intimidate, manage from the top down, to get your way, you soon radicalize those you want to change and it backfires. It is backfiring.

Yesterday's revelation from Leonie Haimson shows, at least in my opinion, the desperation that Klein knows he is in now. The smoke and mirrors won't cut it anymore.

Let's examine Klein's email to Whitney Tilson;

From: Klein Joel I. [mailto:JKlein@schools.nyc.gov]
Sent: Friday, July 30, 2010 4:43 PM
To: Whitney Tilson
Subject: RE: YPO dinner on March 8, 9 or 10th?

Btw, thanks for the shout out today. NYT is outrageous. There will be pushback (in addition to today’s DN edit) ahead but the oppos are trying to move their agenda with this. If you ever want details regarding the results, including strong results in 3 or 4 naeps, i can get to you. Enjoy the weekend.
What is outrageous about what the Times wrote? But push back? Exactly what does this mean? By whom? The DOE, or the parrots of the Daily News and the Post? Me thinks the latter, as seen by the sycophantic editorial in Friday's Daily News. But why is Klein only sharing the results of the NAEP's with Whitney? Why not share it with the world? Dang, share the results with me. But what sickens me the most is Klein starting the email off with urban slang, "shout out." So, so lame Joel.

So Whitney blabbered back to fourteen minutes later;

From: Whitney Tilson [mailto:wtilson@t2partnersllc.com]
Sent: Friday, July 30, 2010 4:57 PM
To: Klein Joel I.
Subject: RE: test data

Thx for the heads up on the Daily News editorial – I’ll include it in my next email.

Please send me whatever you have on the results.

Thx!

What is surprising to me is that Whitney did not know about the Daily News editorial until Klein mentioned it? Of course not. You think that Whitney would dare be caught reading the Daily News? But shouldn't he read it? I have always thought of the Daily News, besides having the best sports section in town, a working class, blue collar paper. Whitney somewhat is there for the working class, blue collar type, no? I mean he says so. From his latest email;
2) The major civil rights organizations, with few exceptions, have been gutless weasels and completely disgraced themselves in siding with the unions against meaningful reforms of a public school system that systematically, all over the country, gives black and Latino students the very worst teachers and schools, thereby trapping black and Latino communities in multi-generational cycles of poverty, violence and despair. In light of this sorry history, this week’s press release criticizing Obama’s education reform initiatives isn’t a surprise…but it sure is pathetic… It’s one thing for unions to throw poor and minority kids under the bus – heck, it’s their fiduciary obligation to look out for the best interests of their members – but for civil rights organizations to do so?!?!
So basically Whitney you know more than the NAACP? Let me ask you this. Would you go stand up in front of an NAACP meeting and say "gutless weasels?" Would you tell this same meeting they are disgraceful? Yeah, I didn't think so. Perhaps you are the gutless weasel?

But thank you so much for painting with the broadest of brushes all teachers that aren't in some charter school or school of your approval. So any other teacher in your mind is the worst? DO you have some type of proof? I mean cold hard facts, and please don't use test scores since the scores have been discredited.

The NAACP, to the best of my recollection, teamed up with the UFT, not to save union jobs, but to save their community. To have a VOICE in the affairs of their community. This is what you are missing Whitney. I have been in the South Bronx for fifteen years. I am but a guest in the community. I will never suppose that I know what is best for the community. You aren't even a guest, at best you, and all your type, are interlopers.

But Whitney, since you decided to claim with that same broad brush in regard to the poor education and schools that, "thereby trapping black and Latino communities in multi-generational cycles of poverty, violence and despair."

It has nothing to do with the home? Nothing to do with what is around them? And you know this how? Have you ever been in the 'hood? I mean alone, without a posse? Not inside a car or limo, but out on the street? Do you know what the challenges are inside a school that teachers face each and every day? And I am not saying challenges as an excuse, but a fact. A fact that I know each and every teacher relishes.

You said it yourself in your July 21 email, and which I blogged about on July 26. You said in regard to the home environment concerning technology of which is not in a vacuum, but across the whole learning specter, "Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support).

Point, set, match. Both Whitney and Klein deserve one another. Two peas in a pod.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Klein Sickens The Entire Education World


STOP THE PRESSES!!!!!! Neat. I feel like Whitney Tilson right now.

Leonie Haimson reported on her blog about an email exchange between Chancellor Joel Klein and charter school wunderkind Whitney Tilson concerning the New York Times saying not very nice things about Klein.

We here at SBSB read the email and the crack team ascertained that this was some kind of coded message between Klein and Tilson. We ran the email message through our patented code-O-breaker and were able to definitively learn what the secret exchange is. Read on.

From: Whitney Tilson [mailto:wtilson@t2partnersllc.com]
Sent: Friday, July 30, 2010 4:57 PM
To: Klein Joel I.
Subject: RE: test data

Gotta love the cabin!!

From: Klein Joel I. [mailto:JKlein@schools.nyc.gov]
Sent: Friday, July 30, 2010 4:43 PM
To: Whitney Tilson
Subject: The Cabin

"Dear Whitney, last night with you was bliss. I fear my.. orgasm has left me a cripple. I don't how how I shall ever get back to work.. I love you madly, Joel. Enjoy the weekend!

P.S. Loved the cabin.


So sad.

It's Dead, Jim!



I was supposed to do this bit Tuesday night about RTTT. I figured since the finalists were announced why not have some fun. I was going to have Dating Game RTTT and the three "bachelors" were going to be states. Arne Duncan was going to be the "bachelorette." It would have been a hoot. I had the music all ready to go. But after I just finished with Norm Scott I just couldn't do it.

And this has nothing to do with Norm. Norm was wonderful. I was down after speaking to him. What got me down? Is how Unity and the current UFT hierarchy is in cahoots with the deformers. Which got me to thinking how the deformers are now in control of education. And then to top it all, Obama's speech today to the Urban League.

The nobility of the teaching profession is dying. It is on life support. It just needs someone to pull the plug. All it is about now is numbers. About someone's idea of what constitutes clear cut results.

Tell anyone you are a teacher and you are sure to get some snickering. Or worse. "Teachers are lazy," "The unions decide what is best," "Oh you have all this time off," and it goes on and on and on. But cops, nurses, firefighters, etc... they are noble. Teachers aren't.

I think teachers are a tough bunch and we can take what is being said about us, but know what sucks? It is one thing to accept that outsiders will attack us, but it is another when our union won't have our backs. Not only does the UFT have an obligation to the teachers because of the dues with pay, but it has a moral and ethical obligation as well. How much longer must Mulgrew/Weingarten continue to bend and yield? How much longer will the rank and file accept this?

I say much longer. Because as the rank and file gets younger, and the memory of of a strong union fades into oblivion, the City will get what it wants. Young, pliable teachers who care more about the money and Manhattan lifestyle. And let's not forget these teachers will mostly be putting in three years max. So what will they care about their rights, about the long term health of education?

The deformers are playing their role perfectly. Divide the rank and file. A good example is the little boy and girl over at Educators4Excellence. Pay off teachers with more and more money. Scare teachers with losing their jobs. Make up rules and regulations as they go along. Bring in unethical business type people to put together "blue ribbon" panels on education. Close down schools. Segregate students. And presto!! The death knell of teaching.

THE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH EDUCATION!!! As with anything it changes, adjusts with the times. But in all this insanity, inanity that is swirling above us now I have one simple question. Why is it that there are never any regular teachers involved in all this "change?" Yeah, I know. There are teachers involved, but for some reason they are the type out of central casting that play the mean people in a Karate Kid movie.

Obama said this today to the Urban League:
So Race to the Top, isn't simply the name of an initiative. It sums up what's happening in our schools. It's the single most ambitious, meaningful education reform effort we've attempted in this country in generations.
And it will soon be the latest, most ambitious, most meaningful failure of our students ever attempted by this country in generations.

Thank you for allowing me my rant.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Next Internet RadioCast

Tuesday night, July 27 at 9 PM.

Guests will include Lance Wood, and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

Call in # is

(917) 932-8721

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bronx-teacher/2010/07/28/the-mind-of-a-bronx-teacher

Seeing Life Through Whitney Tilson's Glory Hole


Something has been on my mind for a few days. More like a week. Been wanting to write about it but been busy, and been blocked. I hate writer's block. Worse than my block with fractions.

Back on July 16 I wrote about a David Brooks column in which Whitney Tilson went off into a corner with some Kleenex and some WD-40 and rubbed one out. But once again, Whitney is caught in his favorite position of being caught with his panties down around his ankles.

In Whitney's latest meth fueled email he blabbered;
9) David Brooks’s column that I included in my last email, which argues that “access to computers and the internet actually HARMS the educational development of low-income kids”, generated quite a response. A friend sent this article, which dives into this topic more deeply: If all of this leaves you a bit confused -- and/or ready to argue -- you are not alone. One way to try to make sense of all of these studies together is to consider that ICTs (information and communication technologies) may function as a sort of 'amplifier' of existing learning environments in homes. Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support), ICT use can help; where home learning environments are not already strong (especially, for example, where children are left unsupervised to their own devices -- pun intended), we should not be surprised if the introduction of ICTs has a negative effect on learning.
Not only did he insult me by not quoting me, but in quoting the article in which his friend from the glory hole sent him Whitney completely contradicted himself and in fact kind of put the kibosh on the glory of charters, tests, and Whitney. All this in nineteen simple words. Care to guess which words they are? Come one, guess.
Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),
There you have it. Whitney posted it, ipso facto, Whitney agrees with it. It all flows out of the home. So Whitney, the wonderful things you talk about what happens at KIPP? Why do these things happen? Answer: Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),

Let's answer some more questions using these nineteen words. Remember, these words just don't pertain to technology.

The charter schools have wonderful students? Answer: Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),

Students do well on tests? Answer: Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),

Students excel in traditional public schools? Answer: Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),

A certain blogger thinks you a pretentious, dipshit, phony? Answer: Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),

Educators and soon the parents of NYC? Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),

Someone decides to use protection during your idiosyncrasies in a men's room in a interstate rest stop? Answer: Where such environments are conducive to student learning (as a result, for example, of strong parental direction and support),

Monday, July 19, 2010

Exclusive Photo Of DOE Nicole Suriel Investigation

SBSB has just received an exclusive photo of the DOE investigation into the drowning death of Nicole Suriel. This photo is safe for the workplace.



July 20 Internet Radio Cast

Join in the discussion (scheduled at press time) as a prominent criminal attorney is interviewed about what responsibility the principal and assistant principal from the Columbia Secondary School have in the drowning death of Nicole Suriel.

Also, an episode of "I Love Eva."

All this and more tomorrow night, July 20 @9PM

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bronx-teacher

Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Gorilla Shares About Nicole Suriel


In light of the sweeping under the rug of responsibility for Principal Jose Maldonado-Rivera and Assistant Principal Andrew Stillman of the Columbia Secondary School of the drowning death of 12 year old Nicole Suriel, we here at SBSB were wondering. Since these two adult males with years of background in education did not know protocol for a field trip, especially a field trip to a beach on an ocean, does anyone know the proper protocol?

We decided to do an experiment. This morning the crack team here at SBSB arrived at 7 AM at the Bronx Zoo's Congo exhibit, long before gates opened, to interview Zuri the Gorilla and our guest translator Jim Fowler of Mutual Of Omaha's Wild Kingdom.

We arrived at the Congo exhibit just as Zuri was finishing his breakfast. He looked relaxed and eager to talk. After some brief greetings and a warm hug from Zuri we sat down with Jim serving as a translator. Here is the transcript of the interview:


Zuri, if you were principal, what would you have done?

Hmmm. That is an easy one. The very first thing I would have made sure that there were signed permission slips specifically for this trip.

But, the students already had "blanket" permission slips.

Not good enough. With a trip like this in which so many things can go wrong, it is better to have specific permission slips. Let me add one more thing. In these permission slips I would have added that if a student is unable to swim that that student cannot come along.

Would you have had the permission slips only in English?

Of course not! Spanish as well.

What about supervision? What would you have done differently?

First, have more than just one teacher. I am not counting the boyfriend and the intern. There should have been some parents there. A principal should and can reach out for parent volunteers. Also, my AP, could have put aside the ordering of supplies and been there. Remember, he said he would. The trip should have been postponed. Of course this is all speculation since I am not a licensed administrator in New York State. To be honest, this trip never should have been approved int he first place.

Who is ultimately responsible for this fiasco and the girls death?

The principal. Like Captain Kirk, Captain Picard, George Steinbrenner, or even Harry Truman the buck always stops at the top. He should have been more involved in this trip and supervised the vetting of it better.

Any other thoughts?

Yes. I believe that the principal, Jose Maldonado-Rivera, should be brought up on charges of criminally negligent homicide. At the very least he never should have been given tenure, and should have been brought up on 3020a charges.

Really? On what basis?

New York State law, and I quote;
125.10 Criminally negligent homicide.
A person is guilty of criminally negligent homicide when, with
criminal negligence, he causes the death of another person.
Wow! You really seem to be going out on a limb!! Well that seems to be all the time we have Zuri. Any last thoughts.

This is a immigrant girl, a girl of color. If she were white we would not be having this conversation. The right thing would have been done.

So there you have it. A primate. A gorilla from Equatorial Africa knows better than the DOE. So sad.

Friday, July 16, 2010

David Brooks And Whitney Tilson Are Both Wrong

Recently in one of his mass emails, Whitney Tilson waxed poetic over a recent column by David Brooks of the New York Times. Whitney blabbered;
2) David Brooks with some CRITICALLY important research and insights on the importance of books – and how access to computers and the Internet actually HARMS the educational development of low-income kids:
If you read Brooks column at no time did he disparage the use of computers in education. What he lamented about was the use of the Internet and the delivering of it high speed. But since Whitney yet again has chosen his own way to see things and disregards the facts I feel I have a civic, as well as a moral, duty to expose his ignorance along with David Brooks. But let's touch on Brooks first. A few things got my knickers in a bind,

Recently, book publishers got some good news. Researchers gave 852 disadvantaged students 12 books (of their own choosing) to take home at the end of the school year. They did this for three successive years. Then the researchers, led by Richard Allington of the University of Tennessee, looked at those students’ test scores. They found that the students who brought the books home had significantly higher reading scores than other students.

OK, where was the control group? At what level were these students at at the beginning of the three year study? Were these books appropriately leveled? Were these books appropriate for each students reading level? Did the students read these books in isolation? Just a myriad of questions that need to be addressed.

This study, along with many others, illustrates the tremendous power of books.

A-duh Sherlock.

Recently, Internet mavens got some bad news. Jacob Vigdor and Helen Ladd of Duke’s Sanford School of Public Policy examined computer use among a half-million 5th through 8th graders in North Carolina. They found that the spread of home computers and high-speed Internet access was associated with significant declines in math and reading scores.

Yeah, really? I mean. really? This should not be a shock. I am sure if you run same study of students who watch more TV than read, or just watch a messload of TV the study will come out the same. What is missing, is what is being done of the Internet. The Internet, computers, technology are just another tool to be used in education. Not a replacement for anything. But an enhancement. Kind of like putting Lowry's in your eggs.

Nicholas Carr’s book, “The Shallows.” Carr argues that the Internet is leading to a short-attention-span culture.

You mean just the Internet is? MTV, most of the crap we see on TV isn't? This is not the fault of the Internet, but of our culture. WE WANT EVERYTHING NOW!!!

The Internet-versus-books debate is conducted on the supposition that the medium is the message.

No, the medium is not the message. The medium delivers the message. Same with books. In fact, let's substitute books for any type of reading materiel. If a student just reads Sports Illustrated is this good? Comic books? I believe it is just as good. But if it done in isolation, it be bad.

Now Whitney, you mentioned computers. Computers are a wonderful tool to be used. Students need higher order thinking skills. The one of the best methods to develop these skills is technology.

Using the Internet to research, is a skill that is needed in the 21st century. Students will also be able to weed out and tell the differences between different types of information. Led correctly students will develop vast skills when it comes to reading, and organizational skills.

There is a graphic organizer, Inspiration, that I truly believe in. Students can glob there information from books, from the Internet, from life and graphically organize it. This builds on their critical thinking skills, or lack of, and will improve their reading. They will feel a sense of accomplishment see completed work, and their thought down in a tangible way.

I have seen computers used as a babysitter in school, I have seen kids just play computer games used endlessly. This is the incorrect method in which to use computers. Also, I have seen non-qualified teachers (not saying they are bad teachers) run computer labs. This is all is not good. Teachers think that if they are using the Internet and Word they have it down pat. They don't.

Want students to read more than 12 books in a summer? Give them an iPad, give them a iPod, or a Palm. There are wonderful programs out there that students can read books on these devices. Better, with some of these programs if a student does not know the word it can be tapped on and the pronunciation and definition are given. Students will read non-stop on these. They do the Wii or Xbox non-stop. Students eat this electronic stuff up. Want to expand their world? Distance learning is so easy now. A class can team up with a class in Europe and each can learn together and about one another. Students can edit and record their own movies, photos, create web pages.

Computers should be integrated with the curriculum. But want to know the most difficult part of doing this? When money is cut, what is one of the first things they cut? The computer teacher is deemed expendable. So are the computers.

But for all this there is a need for money. Show us the money. A lab in NYC will cost somewhere between $50K-$60K. Why can't the hedge fund managers come in a each sponsor a few schools and get computers? It won't happen because it doesn't look as pretty as giving all that money to charter schools.

Shame on you all. Why should our students be in the 20th century while the charter kids are in the 21st century?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Evan Stone And Sydney Morris Are At It Again


I suggest highly that anyone in need of a laugh get on the mailing list of Educators4Excellence. It is laughs galore!! I also suggest Whitney Tilson's mass email. There are plenty of laughs to be found there as well.

We shall now look behind the curtain at the true agenda of E4E.

We are excited to announce the launch of our E4E Weekly Update emails! Check in each week to find out about the biggest developments in education, upcoming E4E events, and ways you can get more involved in sharing your voice!

Take Action:

  • Apply to become an E4E School Captain! We are looking for a group of motivated individuals who are interested in becoming E4E School Captains, who will serve as the voice of E4E within their school. As a School Captain, you will help encourage and activate other members in an ongoing effort to put the needs of our students first.
  • Join an E4E Policy Team! Are you ready to create change? As a member of a Policy Team, you will have the opportunity to come together to discuss specific issues in education, and create E4E's official position papers by making recommendations that will aid student achievement.
  • Become an official E4E Member (if you are not already!) by signing our Declaration of Teachers' Principles and Beliefs. E4E members will receive access to special member-only events and other opportunities!


I am scared, and nervous about that team captain thing. This seems so, well, at an attempt to undermine the entire school. Particularly the CL and the union. But will it stop there? Will it be run like the Stasi? Will there be an enemies list? But I encourage people to sign up. Already Dick Hertz, Dick Bender, Ben Dover, Mike Hunt, Seymour Butz, and Heywood Jablome have all signed up to be team captains.

Network:
  • E4E events will start up again at the end of the summer. Stay tuned!
  • If you are interested in hosting an E4E event for your school community, please e-mail info@educators4excellence.org with the subject line "Event Hosting"
I am looking forward to attending one of these functions. Pound down some beers with Evan Stone. But will he be there? I know he likes to take young boys away on boycations in the summer.

Learn:
This week's top education stories...
  • The Sacramento Bee identifies the disproportionate impact that Last In, First Out policies have on lower income, lower performing schools in California.
  • EdWeek explains the impact that the second round of Race To The Top has had in promoting pro-student reforms in states all over the nation.
There are more education stories than this. What about that study that has debunked Teach For America? That seems newsworthy.

I find it ironic that E4E is taking this leap. Don't Little Evan Stone and Princess Sydney Morris have to get prepared for the upcoming school year? Oh wait. They aren't teaching anymore. They did their three years and split.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tonight's South Bronx School Internet Radio Cast

On tonight's show the guest will be teacher Francis Blake. Francis has been in the Rubber Room for almost three years. To read more about Francis click here.

Reminder tonight's show is at 9 PM

Click here to listen. And as always if you wish to call in the # is 1-917-932-8721

Monday, July 12, 2010

Deconstructing Wendy Kopp


It is so unfair. I mean it really is. It has to stop. I like a challenge. I mean, who doesn't. But ever time a newspaper runs a puff piece on an education deformer it's like shooting fish in a barrel.

The most recent puff piece came in the Wall Street Journal this past Saturday. It was all about how wonderful the reporter Naomi Schaefer and Wendy Kopp of Teach for America think Wendy is. Let's have a looksee.

In the spring of 1989 Wendy Kopp was a senior at Princeton University who had her sights set on being a New York City school teacher. But without a graduate degree in education or a traditional teacher certification, it was nearly impossible to break into the system.

ROTFLMFAO!!! This is such, such....gibberish. In 1989 you didn't need a background or degree in education to become a teacher in NYC. You applied and became a PPT, which I forgot which it stood for. The state and the city gave you five years to get your masters. It wasn't nearly impossible. It was quite possible.

Their 46,000 applicants included 12% of all Ivy League seniors, 7% of the graduating class of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, and 6% from U.C. Berkeley. A quarter of all black seniors at Ivy League schools and a fifth of Latinos applied to be teachers in the 2010 corps.

So we can just count with the information given is that 25 percent of elites applied for TFA. By the way, would love to see the numbers of blacks and latinos that got accepted into TFA.

Today, Ms. Kopp has a much better understanding of why investment banks and consulting firms were knocking on the doors of her Princeton classmates but public schools didn't bother.

Follow the money.

"is that 20 years ago most of our school systems were thinking that recruiting teachers was not their responsibility. They were thinking that was the responsibility of schools of education. So you had one set of institutions that was responsible for training teachers and another set responsible for actually affecting student achievement results."

Wait, school districts do not recruit teachers? What exactly do you mean by recruiting? I read ads, see online postings for teaching jobs all the time.

The young men and women who join TFA go through an intensive summer institute of training before they step foot in their schools. TFA gives them support and more training.

So in eight weeks a person is ready to teach? I think potential McDonalds managers stay longer at Hamburger University. Wow, more training and support? Why can't regular teachers be entitled to such?

Ms. Kopp said she first became aware of the educational inequities in America during college. She watched her roommate—a "brilliant first-generation college student from the Bronx"—struggle with her schoolwork. Meanwhile, students who had attended "East Coast prep schools . . . thought Princeton was a cakewalk," she recalls

Maybe, just maybe your roommate from the Bronx couldn't afford a prep school? Wendy, we all don't have trust funds.

TFA's fundamental premise is that a child's home life and socioeconomic status need not doom him or her to educational failure. "There is a perception in our communities that we have low educational outcomes in low-income communities because kids aren't motivated or families don't care. We've discovered that is not the case," says Ms. Kopp.

No it shouldn't doom them. But it does not make it easier. And yes Virginia, it is not a perception that kids aren't motivated or families don't care. The pull of the street is real.

TFA released "Teaching as Leadership: The Highly Effective Teacher's Guide to Closing the Achievement Gap," which shares the practices of teachers who have made significant gains with students. One chart explains why teachers should choose an objective like "The student will be able to order fractions with different denominators," rather than "The teacher will present a lesson on ordering fractions with different denominations."

Where is that done, "the teacher will present?" Where? It is a fallacy.

Given that the Peace Corps gets $350 million, Ms. Kopp suggests "this seems like a no-brainer . . . particularly given that TFA has proven results and is so heavily aligned with the federal agenda around education." But so far, TFA has a big zero next to it in President Obama's budget. Almost no Republicans have signed on to support it because of budget deficit concerns.

Where are the proven results by an independent entity? Let's keep that zero in the budget!!

That's it. I am getting sick. I just wanted to discuss what really stood out to me. Besides so much is missing in this article. Like why so many leave TFA after the three year commitment and why Wendy Kopp feels the need to pay herself a $268K salary.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Mike Mulgrew's Balls

There has been a lot of speculation, myself included, as to whether or not Dear Leader of the UFT Mike Mulgrew has any balls. And this has been questioned not just figuratively, but literally as well.

We here at SBSB put a crack team together to definitively ascertain the condition, and/or whereabouts of Mulgrew's testicles. It was a long and arduous process. Many dead ends, many leads not coming to fruition, but finally today, in an email, the answer we have all been waiting for came in photographic evidence.
Yes, it be true. Mike Mulgrew has no balls. We have learned that he has been in search of them for some time. There have been reports that his balls were seen this week in Seattle in a case held by Randi Weingarten, though this has yet to be confirmed.

As a public service, SBSB will lead the way in search of Mike Mulgrew's balls. Please if you see them, or know where they might be, please contact SBSB. Only serious sightings will be investigated.

Next Internet RadioCast

A reminder.

Next Internet radio show is this Tuesday, July 13 @ 9 PM. I am working on having several guests.

The number to call in is: (917) 932-8721

And the link to listen:
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bronx-teacher

Teach For America Slip Is Starting To Show


Interesting column today by Valerie Strauss today in the Washington Post. Seems the sheen is off the KIPP apple. Oh, that's is just a shame. But let's give credit where credit is due. I give plenty of credit to Valerie Strauss for lifting up the KIPP rock and exposing what we all knew was under it.

An independent study was conducted by Assistant Professor Julian Vasquez Heilig of the University of Texas at Austin and Assistant Professor Su Jin Jez of California State University at Sacramento. Their studies found, and this was reported by Valerie Strauss, many things. Including;

More than 50 percent of Teach for America teachers leave after two years and more than 80 percent leave after three years.

This is obvious. I mean TFAer's are only in it for themselves. To receive a free masters degree and to, in their own warped way, make a difference for all the little boys and girls of color.

Teach for America proponents say that the program is aimed not only at supplying teachers to needy schools but also improving the teacher labor supply and shaping individuals who will care about education in their future jobs on Wall Street, in Washington, or elsewhere outside the classroom.

I call bullocks!!! This line is so bogus; "...and shaping individuals who will care about education in their future jobs on Wall Street, in Washington, or elsewhere outside the classroom." Please. Not true. They do it because it looks good on a resume.

Most studies find that those Teach for America teachers who stay long enough to become fully credentialed (typically after two years) appear to do about as well as other similarly experienced cedentialed teachers in teaching reading, and do as well as, and sometimes better than, a comparison group in teaching math.

This is because they age. Because as they stay longer they get married, have families, have lives. Of course it is nice to have a 23 year old teacher that is unencumbered by spouses and children. They can devote all their time, except the drinking and partying, to education. Much as all teachers were able to do before they were in similar situations. Sorry, family always should and does come first.

The analysis concludes that proponents who see the program as providing urban and rural schools with “outstanding recent college graduates,” and opponents who see it as only a short-term remedy that “may not even be better than what it aims to fix” are both correct. It says:

“The studies reviewed in the previous section indicate that, in the short-term, when compared to other underprepared teachers hired into many high-need schools, they may compete well with similarly trained and situated non-TFA teachers (even if just marginally better and only in mathematics)."

This cracks me up. Doesn't seem to matter. But as Strauss pointed out at the beginning of her column; The recruits (TFA) are recent graduates from elite colleges...

So what is an elite college? Only elitists can work as a TFAer? What about a graduate at the top of their class from SUNY-Geneseo, or SUNY-New Paltz? Do these students have what it takes to be in TFA?

One conclusion that is spot on and perhaps Bill Gates should take to heart is, "Invest strategically in evidence-based educational reform options that build long-term capacity in schools." See the key words there? "Evidence-based" This means something that is know to work. Not something on a whim whilst on the toilet.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Ronald Newlon Is Up To No Good


This just in to the SBSB newsroom. A developing story, and one that will be followed up on in the future.

It seems that Ronald Newlon, principal at the Kingsbridge International High School in the Bronx is manipulating Regents exams.

The high school of 488 students is located in the former Walton High School. KIHS serves students that have been in the country for less than four years.

What is strange is that out of a school of almost five hundred students, only two have IEP's yet many, many more are receiving ELL services.

But if only two students have IEP's why is it that so many have extended time for their Regents exams, beyond the time and a half? SBSB has learned that students are seen leaving the building up to 9 PM on days of the exams. This obviously goes beyond the time and a half.

SBSB has also learned that Ronald Newlon is under investigation for this and other issues. Sty tuned to SBSB has more news about Ronald Newlong comes in.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Education's Howard Stern

So far, so good. On for tonight at 11 PM for the first Internet radiocast. I hope this works.

The call in # is: (917) 932-8721

The link is:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bronx-teacher


or just look up in the upper right hand corner of the blog and click the button.

It will be streaming. I think the best bet is to have it stream through iTunes.

I also believe there is live chat as well. I will follow that as you can chat with me

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Taking The Nestea Plunge

OK. I am doing it. I don't know if it will work, but I will get it right sooner or later.

Join me tomorrow night for my first internet radiocast from 11 PM - Midnight. Callers are welcomed. In fact no more than five. Have no idea what I will discuss. But the wheels are turning right now.

Keep fingers crossed. I hope this works.

Here is the link:

http://tobtr.com/s/1140219

Hopefully I will find the code to have a nice looking button.

Monday, July 5, 2010

The Bridge Over The River Tweed


Last week I watched The Bridge Over The River Kwai for the first time ever. Excellent movie and I highly suggest it be watched. Sadly I saw a corollary between the movie and the UFT and the DOE.

For those unfamiliar with the movie here is its synopsis in a nutshell.

Think about it. In the role of the Japanese commandant of the prison camp, Colonel Saito is Joel Klein. In the role of Colonel Nicholson is Mike Mulgrew. No think about it. Saito tried to break Nicholson who claimed that officers, according to the Geneva Convention were allowed to do manual labor. Nicholson showed a copy of the Geneva Convention to Saito and Saito threw it away, much as our contract has been respected by Joel Klein.

Nicholson is then put into the hole, or the Rubber Room. When he survives it and refuses to give in he is cheered upon his release. The scene then cuts to a crying hysterical Saito realizing he had lost.

This is where we had Bloomberg and Klein last year on extending mayoral control, an the recent cave for the RtTT. We had Saito, or Klein if you will, on the ropes. The UFT was in control.

So Nicholson decides that he is going to build the bridge. He and his officers have a meeting with Saito and his staff. Nicholson is in control of the agenda the entire time. Saito is a mere sock puppet for Nicholson. Nicholson and the prisoners were in control.

But the bridge is being built under the guise of it being a morale boost. Nicholson is slowly turning into a collaborator.

In comes escapee Major Shears, played by James Eterno. He is on a mission to blow up the bridge. Him, and a couple of English chaps.

So at night Shears, er I mean, Eterno put explosives all along the bridge. The plan is to detonate the charges the next morning when the first train passes over.

But what happens? The river recedes and the lines and explosives are exposed. Nicholson notices this and starts to follow the lines with Saito in tow. Nicholson follows the line to the rock in which a detonator and one of Shears pals is hidden. At the last second Shears buddy jumps up and does away with Saito, but Nicholson cries out for help. Shears' pal is gunned down and now comes Shears to the rescue. Shears is also shut and then and only then does Nicholson come to his senses. He cries out, "what have I done?" At this point he is hit with a mortar round and falls on the detonator. KABOOM goes the bridge.

So what is my point? My point is, and after seeing this over at Queens Teacher, is what the heck happened? The union had the DOE by the gonads in 2002, 2009, and 2010 and just caved. I know I am not an expert negotiator, but I do know once you have hand you don't give it back. Why do we have a collaborator better suited for Vichy France or the ghettos of Poland leading us?

Madness, madness.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Goodbye David Pakter, You Will Be Missed


David Pakter has fought the good fight. He did what many of have wanted to do. He gave a good, swift, hard kick into Joel Klein's testicles. Whilst Klein is writhing on the ground in pain holding his damaged goodies, Pakter is leaving with his head, and self-respect, held high.

From David Pakter:

At What Cost, Victory ?

Over, And Yet Never Over

_______________________________

Some Thoughts Expressing the Idea That

Behind the Toughest Exterior the Pain Yet Lingers

_________________________________

To My Legal Team

With Heartfelt Appreciation

Many thanks for following up on the idea to create a paper trail for the Hon. Supreme Court Justice Cynthia Kern to better recognize the NYC DOE's current intention to "circle the wagons" and put up smoke and mirrors to hide the Truth of what was done to me.

I trust the Bio I faxed was sufficiently readable for your purposes.
As students of human nature it might interest you to learn that despite the fact that on Tuesday last, I officially resigned my career as a New York City Educator after 41 years, 9 months and 20 days, my mind has not been as successful as the paperwork submitted in severing the Links.

At times I feel a great relief that I will never again have to sit in some God forsaken little "Hearing Room" at 49 Chambers Street and suffer the obscene humiliations visited there upon Theresa Europe, Esq.'s countless and helpless victims.

But several times a day, all the recollections of the past seven years come crashing back down upon my head like demonic memories from Hell that cannot be escaped. The years of being made to feel like a powerless victim at the mercy of a 23 billion dollar conglomerate controlled by pathological, sub humans like Joel Klein, Theresa Europe et al, are not easy to forget or bury.

And poor Mr. A, who first brought my case to your attention, not only was also ruthlessly victimized by these ghouls from some sick Underworld, but for the sake of his Family must continue to work for and be victimized in that sick world- may God have Mercy on his Soul.

I suppose when one finally escapes some Hellish nightmare that has continued for years beyond counting, one never fully recovers from or is able to escape all thoughts and memories of such an experience. And I fully suspect these memories will haunt me into my grave and into the next world.

And haunt me not only for what a depraved and clinically sick system did to me alone but the havoc and pain that was visited upon so many others as well.


One can only attempt to move on with one's Life as best he can and just learn to live with the memories that for years beyond number, one was a "victim", and try to concentrate on actions beneficial to our future days in our future lives.

But we must also accept the fact that the memories of our long nightmare will never be fully laid to rest and will always be there, existing just below the surface ready to be reawakened at a moment's notice.

I was removed from my Medical Room on Sept. 26, 2004, after a full year of never ending highly vicious Whistle-blower Retaliation, on ten minutes notice and unceremoniously "escorted"/ejected from the school building where I had taught with Distinction for a quarter of a Century.

My removal was intentionally staged, as if in a Theatre, orchestrated by uniformed guards, as if I were a common felon, and meant to be witnessed by hundreds of my students and fellow Teachers.

My "removal" was intended to be a "show" and perhaps a warning to others to "stay in line and do not rock the boat lest you suffer the same Fate as David Pakter".

From that day on I was catapulted into an endless nightmare of being Railroaded by the Dept of Education Medical office quacks and endless other indignities including going through two ""Kangaroo" trials euphemistically referred to as NY State Education Law 3020-a trial Hearings.

A process so twisted and devoid of any of the rights that obtain in a trial in a Real courtroom that it is no wonder people entering 49 Chambers Street must go through Metal detectors for fear some Teacher might just finally snap and start taking out the so-called DOE Prosecuting attorneys, all of whom should be lined up against a wall for the things they do every day of the week to end an innocent Teacher's career and source of livelihood to feed their families.

It was only due to the endless, years long efforts of a highly dedicated Defense attorney as well as a most courageous NY State Hearing Officer who refused to be intimidated, that Justice in the end prevailed.

I have actual proof that the Head of the NYC Dept of Education Teacher Trials Unit Chief, Theresa Europe, Esq. and Philip Oliveri, my DOE "prosecutor" knew the charges against me were bogus and concocted from Day One. I have recently been reading cases of US District Attorneys who eventually were disbarred for Railroading Defendants who they knew were 100 % innocent.

I absolutely want to see Theresa Europe, Esq., Philip Oliveri, Esq. and many other individuals, publicly disbarred for what was done to me, (not to mention so many others which continues even now today, as I write these words).

Please try to imagine, for a moment, your own wife, husband, son or daughter was a NYC Teacher and about to go through the seven year Hell I experienced after I wrote to former Federal Prosecutor Joel Klein, Esq. on October 2, 2003, informing him of egregious Federal, State and City, Civil Rights violations that were occurring in the NYC Public schools.

If there is anything positive to be gleaned from the long nightmare I experienced and managed to survive it is that along the way I met many courageous individuals of principle who refused to avert their eyes from what was being done to me and so many other innocent human beings who did not in any way deserve the Fates served up to them by such twisted human failures as former Federal Prosecutor, Joel Klein, Esq. and his "willing executioners".

God must look down approvingly upon any person who would spend his/her life defending those who cannot defend themselves from morally bankrupt, pathologically evil individuals.

Next to healing broken and diseased bodies, what could possibly represent a more worthwhile way to spend one's hours upon this Earth than standing up for what is Right and defending those Falsely Accused.

Everlasting Blessings on those people everywhere who have the courage of their convictions, and who refuse to capitulate to Evil for the sake of personal gain.

They are indeed the Brave,

and their selfless Courage makes up for all the depraved cowardice of others.