Monday, April 25, 2011

Man-Child Michael Loeb Of The Urban Institute Of Mathematics

Groggy, and still yet to have my morning cup of coffee, I signed onto Facebook. Suddenly, I was wide awake. Another lie, another piece of propaganda by the crew at I put my reading glasses on and started reading. Some drone, some hack, some lackey named Michael Loeb blubbered forth on how change would bring teachers respect.

Michael Loeb? Where have I heard that name before. I immediately called an emergency meeting of the crack team here at SBSB. Whilst still in my robe and reeking of morning breath I asked them point blank where have I heard that name before. Immediately, our college intern Harvey told me that Michael Loeb had been mentioned in a previous blog post. At this point, I sent Harvey to get some coffee and I scoured the archives.

Alas, it was here that I quoted third year teacher, and George Washington University grad, and all around stooge Michale Loeb as whining that he is just a "cog in the machine." Blech!! Why did I have to wake up to this?

I really don't wish to get into all the mind numbing, parroting of talking points that Mikey spewed forth. Been beaten to death. One thing is bugging me. Really bugging me.

Mikey quoted President Zero as claiming;
"that one of the biggest impacts on a child's lifetime success comes from teachers."
Mikey goes on to say;
"Studies show that President Obama is correct: the most influential factor in a child's school education is his or her teacher."
Hey Mikey got Zero's words mixed up. Zero said " of the most," but Mikey uttered, "the most influential." Since Mikey wrote it and probably thinks he even knows more than Zero we will stay on his words.

Mikey is wrong. Mikey is 25 years old. How does he know what goes on in life. It is the parent, then the village or community the child is raised in, then the school or the teacher. My son in his February report card slipped in some grades. There was a major change at home, I was not on top of him as I usually am, and he had slippage. IT WAS MY RESPONSIBILITY! But Mikey, now to tell you a story so pull up a chair.

I started speaking at the normal age. My brother was born when I was 2 3/4. I didn't speak again until 4 years old. We were living in Flushing at the time and I went to one of the preeminent speech therapists in Manhattan. I had problems. Trouble with L's, oi, or, I lisped, I was a mess. Now, the following I don't remember, but my mother shared it with me many times.

At the initial consultation the speech therapist, Dr Penn told my mother that I will never be able to read well. Hell, this was 1968, what did they know then. My mother left the office crying, but determined that she was to prove Dr Penn wrong.

I remember sitting on the bed with her reading the New York Times. Maybe I was 4 or 5, I truly don't recall. But I do remember her teaching me the sounds, the letters, the words. I have a faint memory of reading something about President Nixon. But if it was not for her, if it was not for her refusing to accept a diagnosis, who knows what would have been?

Mikey, you are a 25 year old child. Your life experiences are teeny tiny. Have a child. You will see. You will be the most important factor in your child's education as I am in mine. It is time for you to think as an independent person, not as some cog. Surely, this is not how you were taught at George Washington University.

Next South Bronx School Internet Radio Cast

A biggie, history making show for Tuesday, April 26 at 9 PM EDT

We welcome back to the program Christina (DE) school board president John Young. John has made news recently in leading the charge in saying enough is enough to the education dolts in Dover and Washington. Watch here as he says NO MORE KOOL-AID!!!!!!!

John is one of the most honest, well spoken, and thought provoking people in education today. John had the foresight to see the evils of Race to the Top and Arne Duncan. Read more of his thoughts at

The call in # is 917 932 8721

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Ruben Brosbe And Elizabeth Green

One wonders how a talentless, idiot savant such as Ruben Brosbe can write for Gotham Schools. Yes, even whilst looking down the end of her nose at others, super aggregator of GS, Elizabeth Green, must see Ruben for the dolt that he is.

The crack team got together recently and poured over Ruben's writings. The computer here at the SBSB offices have shown that his writings, his thoughts are not on par with the thinkings of a 2nd grader. In fact, the computers have suggested some sort of brain damage, or brain misfunction on Ruben's part.

Which is all the more strange in how does he have this pull, this cred over at GS? We fed facts to the computer about Elizabeth Green. We told the computer that she is not a journalist, that rather, she is an aggregator. That she has a thing for sycophantic idiot savants. That she thinks she is better than everyone. At this point while the computer was trying to analyze Elizabeth Green, it suddenly became sentient and activated its self destruct sequence.

So it was left to the humans. The humans came up with why it is Ruben is allowed to write for GS. There must be, and one can only assume, that there is some sort of weird, gross relationship between between Ruben and Elizabeth.

In fact when questioned about this Elizabeth Green would neither confirm nor deny that such a relationship exists. One can only draw their own conclusions.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Mona Davids Rocks The House!

For those unaware, Mona Davids has started a new advocacy group, New York City Parents Union. As we all know, Mona is a force, and I personally can't think of anyone better to be part of such an undertaking. Mona has started this with Muba Yarofulani, Lisa Donlan, Mariama Sanoh, Paola de Kock. What a formidable team! Reminds me of Murderers Row of the 1927 Yankees.

According to Mona; ....
"we're focused on fighting Bloomberg's teacher layoffs and budget cuts which we have to organize against this week so we have actions after passover/easter. We have to lobby the city council not to pass Bloomberg's budget. We need folks to make visits to their city council members and share with them how it will affect their schools and kids."
The Parents Union will educate parents how to navigate the educational system and empower parents to advocate for their children in their schools for the following reforms:
  1. Smaller Class Sizes
  2. Excellent Community Public Schools for ALL Children
  3. More Teaching – Less Testing
  4. Parent and Teacher Empowerment and Leadership
  5. Equitable Funding for ALL Schools
  6. Moratorium on school closings and charter co-locations
  7. Culturally Relevant Curriculum
  8. Expand Pre Kindergarten and Early Intervention Programs
  9. Qualified and Experienced Educators and Educational Leaders
  10. Enforcement of the law requiring charters to recruit, retain and show their retention efforts of students with special needs and English Language Learners. The practice of pushing/counseling out such students must end
  11. An end to the granting of waivers for chancellor appointees who do not qualify under the law
  12. An immediate end to mayoral control and the failed education policies of the past 9 years
So go out there, support this new group, and visit their website. With Mona behind it, you know they will be a force to reckon with.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Family Time With Whitney Tilson

We here at SBSB have standards. The standards might be low, but they are standards nonetheless.

As much as we skew, or some say, make fun of the Rubens, the Evans, the Evas, and yes, even Whitney Tilson, one thing we will not tolerate, no matter how much we do not care for such people, is the divulging of personal information. And we are most adamant about this when it comes to peoples families.

Some time ago, Matt Polazzo wrote a lackey inspired guest column in the Daily News. Of course this left Matt open to ridicule and shame here on the pages of SBSB. In the heated debate that followed in the comments section, an anonymous commenter put a link to a Flckr or Picassa page of Matt and his family. This was completely unacceptable. It was immediately deleted! Yes, we do have standards.

Why is this being brought up now? We have come across something that has not only saddened us here at SBSB, but has raised our ire as well.

Whitney Tilson, with his panties in a bunch over an article that Mr Winerip wrote concerning how a cadre of the education deform crowd has never attended public school, shared personal information about Mr Winerip in his blog.

Now while Mr Winerip does have a website with basically the same information, Whitney's divulging of this information, and the manner in which in has been divulged is being used as a sword against Mr Winerip.

I find it ironic that Whitney, a person, and I use that term loosely, constantly bombards us with stories of his personal travels, and family time (including family photos) would surely say that criticisms or mocking of his family is forbidden. Even we here at SBSB, where our feelings are quite obvious about Whitney have never crossed that line to include his family.

The crack team here at SBSB is going to be meeting by the end of this week and review our standards, low as they might be. One member of the team, Bob, is already chomping at the bit to go to town on Whitney and his family. Bob can be controlled. All we need to do is throw him some raw meat and play some Deep Purple for him.

As for as what Mr Winerip wrote concerning the deform crowd attending private schools. Think of it this way. I coached Little League for four years. Two of those years my team won the championship for coach pitch. Can I leave teaching and manage in Major League Baseball? My record is better than any Mets manager over the last 25 years. Why not?

Whitney, keep on blogging, keep on doing whatever it is you do. The more you do, the more you expose yourself for what you are.

Monday, April 18, 2011

How E4E Should Send Out Their Updates

Educators 4 Excellence

Dear E4E Members and Supporters,

  • NYC Educator exposes new chancellor Dennis Walcott as the hypocrite that he is
  • Spring is here and it is time to mingle! E4E is inviting all educators to a keggar on Thursday, April 21st as we rip roaring drunk and denounce what the cuts being made to education . Make new friends and learn about great opportunities on how we together can fight the ed deform movement. Sydney Morris will be raffled off as a door prize.
    • WHAT: E4E Kegger
    • WHERE: Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx
    • WHEN: Thursday, April 21 from Midnight-whenever
Take Action:
All our best,
Evan and Sydney
E4E Co-Founders

If you no longer wish to receive emails, please click the link at the bottom of this message.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

My Meeting With State Assemblyman Mike Spano

Yesterday, Assemblyman Mike Spano (D) Yonkers took time out of his busy schedule, and on a Saturday, to personally meet with me concerning LIFO, or rather as it should be called, seniority rights. I truly wish to thank Mike (as he insisted I call him) for taking the time to listen and talk with me. For those who are not aware, Mike's wife is WCBS-TV's Mary Calvi.

I wanted to discuss LIFO, or rather, seniority rights, with Mike. Mike understood my concern, and listened quite intently. I asked Mike if there is any chance of the bill to do away with seniority rights coming up for a vote in the Assembly. Mike assured me, "That it is dead in the water. It will never happen." Though I was quite pleased with the answer, I still wanted some reassurance.

I asked him, "What if Uncle Mike throws a hissy fit?" Mike responded, "As long as Shelly Silver is the the speaker, there is no way this will see the light of day in the Assembly."

My reply to Mike was,"Even with a new chancellor, you sure?" Mike reassuringly responded, "I am sure!"

We made some small talk during the rest of the meeting. As I left, I just couldn't resist one more question.

"What about mayoral control? Can we do away with it?" At least I got an honest answer. "Too soon to repeal it. Let's see how it still plays out." I looked sad, but said, "How about when Uncle Mike is gone. Can it be repealed then?" Mike smiled, looked at me, and said, "That is a possibility."

We shook hands, and I thanked him for his time. But I left knowing what needs to be done.

We need to keep Shelly Silver healthy. We need to make sure he gets reelected. We need to make sure Uncle Mike does not try to create a coup in the Assembly. And, it wouldn't hurt to convert to Orthodox Judaism and attend the the same shul as Shelly. Perhaps we can go to the same minion Shelly.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Fantasy World Of Ruben Brosbe

What can I say? I owe Ruben Brosbe a debt. Without him, according to numbers run by the crack SBSB team, this blog would lose over 50% of its content. We here at SBSB can not think of better fodder, a better source material than Ruben. In fact the only other person that was as good as Ruben was Numb Nuts. I think Ruben is the new Numb Nuts. We here at SBSB doff out hats to you Ruben.

The latest convoluted ramblings from Ruben appeared over at Gotham Schools yesterday. Entitled, "It’s Not a Great Friday for Me," Ruben tells the tale of how on a Friday, April 7, 2011, a student of his was not having a great day because just outside her apartment door a double murder had occurred. In fact, one of the victims included the son of one of girl's mother's friends.

Why is Ruben's story being questioned? Simple. Ruben has a history of lying, hiding the truth, and not answering questions in which his the facade he has created of himself will be crushed.
Ruben has lied about his role with Educators4Excellence. He has hidden the truth about his true role with E4E. He has refused to share any scores. He has refused to answer why he is not at his original school. He has even refused to conform whether or not he is tenured. And most telling about Ruben, is that he is all about Ruben. He will say or do anything as long as he is in the limelight, the center of attention.

Now, Ruben claims that the girl had a double murder right outside her all. As Mr A Talk, blogger extraordinaire of the Accountable Talk blog points out that upon research in the New York Post and the Daily News there is no occurrence of a double murder taking place in the Bronx of the days the murders supposedly took place. Yes, it would be more of a headline if the victims were white, but still, double murders to tend to make it into the papers.

Also, upon checking, the students of Ruben School, PS 310 would reside in either the 50th or 47th precincts. Sources have shared with the crack team at SBSB that there had been no double murders and that once the Compstat statistics come out this Monday for those precincts, it will be definitive that this was a fantasy on Ruben's part.

We here at SBSB find it curious that the young lady also appeared in school the next day. If there was a true murder, or murders, wouldn't there have been a massive police presence at the scene, keeping the tenants on the floor up through at least part of the night? There would be press, paramedics, crime scene, etc...

Why would the mother, knowing that her daughter was so traumatized send the daughter to school? A third grader, a 9 year old, in a situation like that would not want to be in school, she would want to be with her family. At that young an age, a child after witnessing such trauma would believe that her family would be in danger as well.

No Ruben, this is a made up fantasy of yours so you could write such lines as; "I couldn’t stop tears from coming to my eyes too." This line was written for you, to be about you, so you can get yet more of you in the spotlight.

You truly are pathetic to make something up like this. It shows how desperate you are for some type of accolades, for some form of justification of your existence. You truly are a boy in need of help. Please seek it immediately.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Perklesslly Administrating

I really want to expand on what was written Saturday night about the perkless administrators that are in the employ of the DOE. After I posted the piece, the crack team here at SBSB reminded me that there is enough material for a second part.

The perkless administrators think to the lowest common denominator. A perkless administrator will involve themselves in some project to score points with administrators with perks, and all upper echelon administrators and thinking that they have come up with a fantastic idea, have a much more capable underling carry the project out. The fascinating part is that the perkless administrator will never involve themselves in the project. This better to take credit when all goes well, and even better if it fails.

The perkless administrator always seems to have time to eat a full, nutritionally unbalanced meal. I grew up around all types of strong, leadership type administrators and rarely did these people have time to eat a full service meal, let alone a cup of yogurt. But apparently, a perkless administrator has time not only to eat a meal, but to engage in some type of ritualistic gorging of themselves with the prerequisite high cholesterol, high sodium, high fat, and high carbohydrate meal. This normally isn't a problem, but when one's arteries are thisclose to clogging up, one wonders why this type of food is eaten.

The perkless administrator also has a proclivity for dressing in the latest, and most stylish, androgynous clothes of the day. Now understand, this is not because of the salary of about $100K. Even on that salary, living cheaply, one can find fashionable clothes at Target, hell even K-Mart. But this being 2011, the perkless administrator should know that 70's style ruffled tuxedo type shirts are no longer in.

How does a perkless administrator have any credibility in a grade meeting when the teachers that you are supposedly a leader of have a higher level, and knowledge, of pedagogy than them? Mind you, this is including any and all first year teacher and even little Darwin, the cute little Pre-K kid who walked into the meeting by accident.

But worst, the perkless administrator feels the need to lead by threats, by coercion, by blatant and outright lies. Feeling the heat from above, the perkless administrator will target teachers to make up for some Freudian androgynous shortcoming, or worse, because those teachers are part of a people that went on a diaspora about 2,o00 years ago.

But for the perkless administrator to threaten to take down all and any if its job were to come into jeopardy, is so wrong, so damaging, so becoming what happens when you have no checks and balances in the DOE, that this is why the system as we have is failing.

But fortunately, the perkless administrator finally has the light shining up themselves. After this many years it is about time and in fact couldn't come at any finer a time. There is no hiding from the spotlight. Once it is turned on from above it is impossible to fix past and current incompetencies, and is always impossible to outrun.

The time is now. The time is ending.

Next South Bronx School Internet Radio Cast

Discussion for Tuesday night how the LA Times and reporter Jason Felch are going after teachers with Value Added Assesements.

Our guest Tuesday night at 9 PM EDT is Carolyn Jacobson. Carolyn is a 13 year veteran English teacher at a Title 1 middle school in the Los Angeles Unified School District. She feared for the calculated destruction of public schools in 2002 when she was first introduced to "evaluating data" with NCLB. Her fears were verified in 2007 with a campaign speech given by Obama where he touted the tenants of his RTTT and Blueprint to come. Now she finds herself on the front lines against those market-based reforms being executed by a Broad bought Mayor and Board of Ed, a Broad trained Superintendent, who is also a former Gates Foundation Executive, and a media (major newspaper and two local TV stations) who cheer lead for the oligarchs and their minion - no surprise since they are owned by the Chicago Tribune...who are trying to sell to Broad. Carolyn can be found on Twitter @cajacobson

As alaways, the call in # is 917 932 8721

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Jabba The Hut Lives In The NYC DOE

They used to say those who can't teach, teach phys ed. In the New York City Department of Education, those who can't teach become administrators.

These administrators, actually not a full administrator with all the trappings, or perks, that befall a full administrator, but rather one without that power permeates the ranks of these type of administrators. These, as we shall call them, "perkless administrators," write a check to some college and get their supervisor's certificate and just lay around like Jabba The Hut, and go through their perkless career, without making a true decision, without leadership, and without bringing anything to the table, except onion rings.

When they are teachers, they can't teach. They do the bare minimum, teach in a subject area they have no clue about, and just coast and drift through the day and the school year. How? Seems it helps to have a Rabbi in the DOE.

Suddenly one day, the Rabbi anoints this schlub, this waste of humanity, this waste of supposed pedagogy, a perkless administrator. The ironic thing is that if not for this Rabbi, not one single solitary school in New York City, the planet, the universe would ever hire this mistake of humanity.

You see children gravitate to teachers, to true administrators (with perks or perkless), to school safety agents, to cafeteria workers, to the custodial staff. But no children ever gravitate to a perkless administrator. It seems that perkless administrators have no true use for children. Have no true caring for their education. The perkless administrator lacks basic human empathy.

What is truly amazing, puzzling, almost comical is watching how a perkless administrator has the gall, the chutzpah to not only tell master teachers, really darn good teachers, how to teach, when a perkless administrator has no clue how themselves how to teach.

A perkless administrator needs to demean, to talk down to the staff because a perkless administrator know that they have zero skills, and this is the only way to make them feel big, to feel important, to give any meaning to their miserable, pathetic excuse for existence. The perkless administrator is so ignorant they see other ethnic groups other than their own through the lenses of 1937.

The perkless administrator is truly despised by the staff, mocked constantly behind their back. If only the perkless administrator truly knew what was said, the perkless administrator would shrivel to the form of life they truly are, toe jam. But like toe jam, perkless administrator is flicked away by the staff, those who see the perkless administrator for what it really is.

But as every dog has its day, the perkless administrator is being seen by an administrator with perks. And as the sun sets every day, the sun will be setting soon on the perkless administrator.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Next South Bronx School Internet Radio Cast

Teacher Sabrina joins us Tuesday night, April 5 at 9 PM EDT. Teacher Sabrina is one of the tri-authors of the Failing Schools Blog; The topic will be Michelle Rhee's failings, which are too many to list, and how the shine is starting to come off her apple. As always the call in # is 917 932 8721

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Jason Felch Of The Los Angeles Times Is The New Snooki

I am taking a break from watching Wrestlemania XXVII to blog. Yes, I missing Stone Cold Steve Austin to share my two cents about another hit piece against Los Angeles teachers in today's LA Times by everyone's most biased reporter, Jason Felch.

In fact I think this is a excellent juxtaposition due to the fact that perennial attention whore, Snooki of Jersey Shore is wrestling in a special 3 on 3 Diva tag team tonight. Jason Felch, I have come to the conclusion is the male reporter version of Snooki. An attention whore that has no morals, no values, and will do, say, or manipulate any and all information as long as he is at the forefront of the story.

Today's headline, and subsequent biased reporting by Jason Felch is about a teacher, Miguel Aguilar, who was rated very effective by the convoluted algorithm by Dr Richard Budin of the Rand Corporation, and blindly followed by Jason and the LA Times.

Apparently Miguel Aguilar has received a pink slip, he is being layed off, and another teacher in his school, Broadous Elementary School, John Smith, who has been rated least effective, is not being laid off. Mr Aguilar has 8 years of experience, versus Mr Smith's 15 years. In fact Mr Aguilar and Mr Smith were featured in the original story about Value Added Assessment in the Los Angeles Time last August.

No we here at SBSB applaud Mr Aguilar's method for not teaching to the test, for teaching through the test and finding an effective method for reaching these students. We are also saddened to learn of Mr Aguilar's being laid off and wish that this is just a temporary blip in his career and hope he returns to the classroom at Broadhaus soon. But sadly, Jason Felch is once again playing loose with the facts.

Jason starts off with quoting a teacher that, "A teacher coming forward … that hadn't happened before" But if you read further down in the article Principal Stannis Steinbeck came up to Mr Aguilar and asked Aguilar, "if he'd be willing to lead a school-wide training session."

So Jason couches it as if Mr Aguilar came forward on his own to give professional development, yet further reading shows that it was requested by his principal. In fact this is quite disingenuous of Jason Felch. He is attempting to show a divide amongst teachers at the school, that there is no collaboration, that teacher do not support one another.

Especially when at the beginning of the article Felch writes; "It was the first time anyone at Broadous Elementary School in Pacoima could remember a teacher there being singled out for his skill and called upon to share his secrets school-wide."

Hey, it's not the teacher's fault. It is the administrator's fault that this never happened in the past. A good principal should always look at their teachers to give professional development, to turnkey good practices to the staff. I have given PD, as well as turnkeyed what I have learned. This is called collaboration and does not happen as often as it should. I know at my school, and in fact all teachers I have come in contact with in my career are always sharing ideas and best practices. What Felch has flaunted is not reinventing the wheel.

Felch continues to flail away on his keyboard; "The article contrasted Aguilar's performance with that of the teacher next door, John Smith, who ranked among the district's least effective teachers. Pupils in both classes faced similar challenges in the poor, predominantly Latino community."

Similar does not mean the same. The same does not mean similar. Case in point: A parent and I once had a conversation about the projects. She made explained to me that not all people who live in the projects are poor. There are college grads, city workers, bankers, business people, candlestick makers, etc... who live there. There are also drug addicts, drug dealers, gang bangers, criminals, ex-cons, mentally ill, etc... Even though these people live in the same place, there is a wide array of families, people, etc.... Another case in point: Growing up, there was a family across the street that seemed right out of a Norman Rockwell painting. The classic All-American family. However, I learned many years later that the father was an alcoholic and there was such fear inside that house.

The point I am making here Jason Felch, is that you never knows what happens behind closed doors. Just like your closed doors.

Aguilar in the article claimed, "There's a lot of jealousy and hate out there.... People said things like, 'There's this guy who thinks he's all good just because he's Latino and he's friends with the kids. How do you know he's not cheating?'"

Nice of you to play the Latino card Mr Aguilar. See, now I am starting to lose some respect for you. Maybe you did cheat? How can we be sure? How can Felch be sure? Could it be that no one trusted you because you spoke to the press? There are still many questions that I have asked, and still need to be asked.

Aguilar forced students to slow down and think before answering questions. Without dumbing down lessons, he broke down key concepts in a way that his fifth-graders, among the grade's least fluent in English, could readily understand.

Let's see. Aguilar probably speaks Spanish. How much of his day does he speak in Spanish to his students? Smith, mmmm, I doubt he speaks Spanish. Is it possible that perhaps Aguilar's students feel more of a connection to him? Is it a personality thing? I really don't see what Aguilar is so special. It's common sense.

How come Felch didn't bother to speak to the parents of Mr Smith's students? Why didn't Mr Felch bother to speak to Mr Smith's students? Why is Mr Aguilar so eager to speak with Jason Felch? He claims embarrassment, he whines about about being singled out, but again, Aguilar has no problem making himself the center of attention.

Jason Felch clearly has an agenda. He is a failed teacher, and definitely has an axe to grind. Let's hope and pray that there are no more suicides caused by Jason Felch's irresponsible reporting. Yes, I know, Jason has no conscious. It wouldn't surprise me for Jason Felch to be rooting to see Mr Smith take matters into his own hands.