Wednesday, August 28, 2013

All The Evil That Eva Moskowitz Enables Is Egregious

 Eva Sie haben es wieder getan. Sie haben Ihr wahres Gesicht und die wahre Methode, die Success Academy erfolgreich ist in deinem Geist gezeigt. Wie? Oh bitte Eva, die Wahrheit heraus bereits. Ja, Sie loszuwerden, die lästigen Heilpädagogik Studenten zusammen mit den Schülern mit Verhaltensauffälligkeiten. Gib es zu, das ist, wie diese Testergebnisse durch die Decke gehen, nicht

Oops, excuse me. I lost my head for a moment. I was writing personally to Eva in her native German, then I remembered not all readers of SBSB speak German. So The Crack Team decided to add the translation;

Eva you have done it again. You have shown your true colors and the real method that Success Academy is successful in your mind. How? Oh please Eva, the truth is out already. Yes, you get rid of those pesky special education students along with the students with behavior problems. Admit it, that is how those test scores go through the roof, right?

After reading Juan Gonzalez' column today in the Daily News on the suspension rates at Success Academies and reading such instances such as;
has for years used a “zero tolerance” disciplinary policy to suspend, push out, discharge or demote the very pupils who might lower those scores — children with special needs or behavior problems.
the fast-growing network has failed at times to adhere to federal and state laws in disciplining special-education students.
Eva Moskowitz recently defended her network’s “higher than average” suspension rates compared with public schools as a way to promote “order and civility in the classroom.” 
the network’s administrators removed special-education pupils from normal classrooms for weeks and even months, while at the same time pressuring their parents to transfer them to regular public schools.

And of course such writings on this blog such as; Eva's lack of ethics, corporal punishment at HSA 3, counseling students out, and what she did to Matthew Sprowal, here and here, got The Crack Team thinking. What other person and/or group in the 20th century reminds us what Eva has wrought today? 

We spent some quality time here at SBSB wondering whilst rubbing our chins and pondering. Then it dawned on us!

We are reminded of Hitler and the National Socialist Party. Like Hitler and the National Socialist Party Eva and Success Academy strives for perfection, to be the very best, and that all must follow it decrees.

Like Hitler and the National Socialist Party only wanted purity in the populace, the case can be made that Eva and Success Academy wants only purity at their schools. 

Like Hitler and the National Socialist Party which decided that those who were not pure, Jews, Gypsies, homosexuals, the crippled, were not of any use and will bring shame up the Fatherland thus terminated, Eva and Success Academy decide which students are not pure of learning and not any use to das Mutterland and are soon terminated from their education.

As Hitler and the National Socialist Party were appeased by Chamberlain at Munich, so have Eva and Success Academy been by Bloomberg at Albany.
As Hitler and National Socialist Party were allowed to militarize the Rhineland, so were Eva and Success Academy allowed to open the 1st school.

The same way the Hitler and the National Socialist Party wished to maintain order and civility, so does Eva and Success Academy wish to maintain order and civility.

Eva is a con artist, a charlatan, and a grifter all rolled into one. Don't trust this woman. She is a huckster, a self promoter, all about herself.

Let's see how these students of hers, students that she wishes to be thoughtless animatrons, do when they get into college. Let's see then, where their lack of skills at critical thinking, thinking for themselves, and any ability to be leaders will expose Eva for the fraud that she is.

Eva, take that magic elixir and that wagon, and high tail it out of town.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Alex Lifeson of Rush Demonstrates How To Deal With NYC DOE Investigators

Alex Lifeson turned 60 yesterday. Please take time to wish Alex a happy birthday in your own special way.

We've all been told never to speak with an investigator from Office of Special Investigations or Special Commissioner's Office. I suggest we take it one step further. We as teachers need to look to Alex Lifeson on how to actually comport ourselves while being interviewed by NYCDOE

Monday, August 26, 2013

The Takeover of PS 154 by Bronx Classical Charter Has Begun

We here at SBSB wish to extend  a laurel and hearty handshake to our new overlords and betters at PS 154, Bronx Classical Charter II. We look forward to years of acquiescence and seeing how the monies flow into BCC II and out of PS 154.

We also have come to realize that as your school expands, 154 will shrink in size as if having spent the entire afternoon in a cold pool. Also, we know that as BCC II counsels out students it deems
unworthy, that PS 154 stands a good chance of getting these students. That, and the fact that PS 154 is a failing school and the new district wide open enrollment starting this year for Kindergarten only assures that PS 154 will certainly have an eclectic array of students with IEP's, ELL's, behavior issues, psychological issues, and a consortium of other issues which should only have the community of PS 154 upset. Sadly, that remains to be seen.

Last week the staff got a preliminary set of rules to follow when we return to PS 154, or as The Crack Team likes to say, the "J.D. Hyatt Education Complex."

These rules will consist of;

No P.S. 154 staff member or student may walk down the charter school hallways. 

Staff in Rooms 326, 328, and 330 may not put furniture or garbage in the  hallway until the conclusion of the charter school's school day (4:30 p.m.). 

BCC II is moving onto the 3rd floor and will eventually occupy the entire 3rd floor. We here at SBSB call bullocks! Like a cancer,  BCC II will slowly engorge the healthy host.

If leaving prior to 4:30, please make a recognizable pile of garbage or furniture to be discarded at the front of the classroom and label it clearly for the custodians to see. 

All staff are permitted to use the adult bathrooms on the third floor.  All bathrooms are common space.

This will not last long.

In the P.S. 154 parking lot, spaces #2 - 5 are the only spots that are open to P.S. 154 staff on a first come, first serve basis. 

We predict problems. 

But enough of those rules, The Crack Team was able to obtain a super secret copy of further rules and regulations that have yet to be officially shared. The rules and regulations consist of;

When students of PS 154 complain to staff that the BCC II students seem to have the latest in textbooks, working water fountains and bathrooms, fresh paint in the classrooms, and the latest in physical education equipment, teachers will be instructed to pretend that the students are hallucinating and tell the students there is no charter school in the building. 

When the parents of PS 154 see that we are lagging behind academically of BCC II, explain to the parents that even though the students at BCC II are involved in a challenging, robust, creative CURRICULI, that students should feel blessed at PS 154 for being able to not learn using Readers and Writers Workshop and strict adherence to the Common Core standards.

When parents of PS 154 wonder why their children are not safe, point out to such parents how well behaved the students are at BCC II and explain the students are not that way for BCC II does not use the latest fad for school discipline (Just for the record, we here at SBSB to not condone the goose stepping of the students at BCC II).

When parents of PS 154 inquire as to what the future is for the school, explain to parents (In a manner in which Steve Martin explained in The Jerk about prizes) what will be left of the learning area at PS 154.

There will be more rules and regulations next week. One thing The Crack Team has noticed is that what we were told would be a partnership of PS 154 and BCC II as suddenly started to become one sided, advantage BCC II.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

SBSB Calls for Campbell Brown to Advocate for the Arrest, Prosecution, and Conviction of Husband Dan Senor

It was good to see Mike Mulgrew totally p3wn Campbell the other day. Sadly, this is the one true time that I actually wither saw Mike truly outraged. Who knows how things would be if he actually acted like this other times. But enough about Mike.

So Campbell (should I just refer to her as the "Shicksa From The Bayou"?) is outraged that out of 128 school employees over the last year that were accused of sexual dalliances with students, only 33 were fired. To Campbell Brown, all 128 should have been fired even if the charges against them were, how shall we say, false.

She did ask Mike to make a pledge to her that he will seek to fire all teachers that engage in sexual misconduct. Mike p3wned her again by telling her that he will not make any pledges to her at all. That the system in place works, and that is the system that we will live by.

What Campbell fails to realize is we live in a country of laws and one of the laws of the land are due process. That whether or not you are a private citizen or a government employee, you are entitled to due process when an accusation is made against you. As a government employee you are entitled to a hearing by an impartial arbitrator, which both the DOE and the UFT have agreed upon. The arbitrator makes the decision on culpability, not the UFT. Just because you don't like the verdict, does not mean that you can reverse it.

We don't see Campbell down in Sanford, FL trying to change the verdict, we don't see her attempting to complain about Jerry Remy's son. But just teachers, why?

Could it be that her husband, the man she converted to my religion for, Dan Senor is on the board of MichelleRheeFirst NY? I guess the woman's auxiliary section of MRFNY needs something or someone to rail against.

But come to think about it, I think Campbell might be right. She has a very good point. I will appoint myself a proxy for Mike Mulgrew and I will make that pledge to her that was offered.

But under several conditions.

One, Campbell must advocate for the arrest, prosecution and conviction of her husband Dan Senor for war crimes. Not for all the things that he screwed up (And boy did he!), but for the sexual misconduct of prisoners he allowed in Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.

What's that you say Campbell, Danny had nothing to do with it? Yes, we know that it was not Dan that was pointing at prisoner's naughty bits and humiliating them with insertions of foreign objects. But Danny did work for the Coalition Provisional Authority, was a Senior Advisor to Pro-Consul Paul Bremer, and.....adviser to the Office of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance. Dan was able to fit all this into his life from the invasion, March 2003, to the summer of 2004.

Wait, what is that Campbell? You are now saying that Danny was not a prison guard at Abu Ghraib? Maybe not, but Danny at the very least was part of what created the atmosphere which enabled such behavior at the prison. Did Danny at anytime try to stop it? Did he arrest anyone before it leaked on 60 minutes? What is that you say, Danny did not know? Ignorance is not an excuse.

Dan Senor was wrong, he was culpable, he was part of the problem and not the solution.

Another condition Campbell is to come out and in the same voice of consternation come out against the pervy administrators that the DOE continually looks the other way from.

DR Mychael Willon who was arrested in the 90's for masturbating in a Wichita KS bookstore, John Chase JR who shared with teachers where he wished to stick he hoo-ha, and Quinton Cedeno amongst others. Do it, I dare you.

One last condition. I truly dare Campbell to put her money where her mouth is. Come up to the South Bronx and truly advocate for the women who are raped, sexually abused and physically abused. Not just by strangers, but by family members. Come fight for these women when they show the courage to take their rapists and abusers to court (criminal or civil) and the justice system truly fails these women.

Come advocate for the children that are raped and abused by family members as well and the justice system fails these children.

Campbell is kvetching (Campbell, you're Jewish now, you should know what this means) about 128 teachers, trust me, there are more on the street of the South Bronx preying over the women and the children of not only the South Bronx, but of all of New York.

But it looks cooler for the Campbell Browns of the world to crap on teachers rather than to roll up their sleeves and  solve the real problems of society.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

New York State and EngageNY Advocate Child Abuse

From the files of "You Can't Make This Shit Up!" comes the new 1st grade ELA Learning and Listening strands.

Yeah, I know that there is supposed to be literacy used with this, but we are not sharing the books The Crack Team shared with the students while attempting to make some type of rhyme and reason with
this crap.

Our first student comes to us from Scotia NY. His name is Barry Rosenberg. Barry is in 1st grade and loved Kindergarten. The Crack Team at SBSB recorded and transcribed Barry's responses.

18. Compare and contrast (orally or in writing) similarities and differences within a single fiction read-aloud or between two or more fiction read-alouds;  

 My book that Ms Smith had is big, the two books, bigger

19. Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or name the book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure;  

I poop my pants.

20. Plan, draft, and edit a narrative retelling of a fiction read-aloud, with a title, characters, some details regarding the plot, the use of temporal words to signal event order, and some sense of closure;  

My daddy uses temporal words when he see Obama on TV and another time when he burned his hand

21. With guidance and support from adults, focus on a topic, respond to questions and suggestions from peers, and add details to strengthen writing as needed;  

I have to make pee

22. With guidance and support from adults, use a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including collaboration with peers;

I ate peers at lunch than i make a doody and I see the peers again.

And for those schools that still use that cult of learning from Lucy Calkins and Teachers College a 1st grade student, Chaim Rosenbaum, from an unnamed school on East 135th Street in the Bronx.

Remember, as before, the student either gave an adult the responses verbally or wrote the responses. In both cases a member of The Crack Team at SBSB transcribed the responses on tese pages, verbatim.

18. Compare and contrast (orally or in writing) similarities and differences within a single fiction read-aloud or between two or more fiction read-alouds;  

DFJSJDFuwfhHuq!!! gjojowoj ojojwofjwojf owjdfowjfwojwlldledlodlodol,l9378383jdcmsxhdf.

19. Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or name the book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure;  

wdfqsfwfgafgeqgwegeg! GAGAGA$#@?()SHf

20. Plan, draft, and edit a narrative retelling of a fiction read-aloud, with a title, characters, some details regarding the plot, the use of temporal words to signal event order, and some sense of closure;  


21. With guidance and support from adults, focus on a topic, respond to questions and suggestions from peers, and add details to strengthen writing as needed;  


22. With guidance and support from adults, use a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including collaboration with peers;


Monday, August 19, 2013

If The Corleone Family Were Involved In Education Deform...

So here I am on Saturday on I-81 driving north just outside of Binghamton on my way to Skaneateles. My wife is on her iPhone doing whatever as is my son. I am left alone to listen to flip between the Sirius channels.

One can do a lot of pondering in such a situation. I did. I pondered, or was it wondered, or was it
daydreaming, that the Godfather movie (or even organized crime) is a lot like what we are seeing now in education amongst the deformers. Think about it, we're fighting against a crime family.

So what if the Godfather movie and the Corleone's were involved in education reform. Let's take a look.

Be sure to read the last fantasy or parody all the way at the bottom.

Michael: My credit good enough to buy you out?
Moe Greene: Buy me out?  [Fredo laughs nervously] 
Michael: The school, the playground. The Corleone Family wants to buy you out. 
Moe Greene: The Corleone Family wants to buy me out? No, I buy you out, you don't buy me out.  Michael: Your school loses money, maybe we can do better. 
Moe Greene: You think I'm skimmin off the top, Mike? 
Michael: [Michael shakes his head] You're unlucky. 
Moe Greene: You goddamn guineas you really make me laugh. I do you a favor and take Freddie in when you're having a bad time, and now you're gonna try and push me out! 
Michael: You took Freddie in because the Corleone Family bankrolled your charter school, and the Molinari Family on the Coast guaranteed his teaching position. Now we're talking business, let's talk business. 
Moe Greene: Yeah, let's talk business, Mike. First of all, you're all done. The Corleone Family don't even have that kind of muscle anymore. The Godfather's sick, right? You're getting chased out of New York by Barzini Charter School and the other Families charters. What do you think is going on here? You think you can come to my charter school and take over? I talked to Barzini - I can make a deal with him, and still keep my charter school! 
Michael: Is that why you slapped my brother around in public? 
Fredo: Aw, now that, that was nothin', Mike. Moe didn't mean nothin' by that. Yeah, sure he flies off the handle every once in a while, but me and him, we're good friends, right Moe? 
Moe Greene: I got a business to run. I gotta kick asses sometimes to make it run right. We had a little argument, Freddy and me, so I had to straighten him out. 
Michael: You straightened my brother out?  Moe Greene: He was banging erasers against the board two at a time! Students couldn't get any work at the table! What's the matter with you? 
Michael: I leave for New York tomorrow, think about a price. 
Moe Greene: Sonofabitch! Do you know who I am? I'm Moe Greene! I made my bones when you were going out with cheerleaders! 
Fredo: Wait a minute, Moe, Moe, I got an idea. Tom, you're the Consiglieri and you can talk to the Don, you can explain... 
Tom Hagen: Now hold it right there. The Don is semi-retired and Mike is in charge of the Family business now. If you have anything to say, say it to Michael. 
Fredo: [Moe Greene leaves] Mike! You do not come to Las Vegas and talk to a man like Moe Greene like that! 
Michael: Fredo, you're my older brother, and I love you. But don't ever take sides with anyone against the Family again. Ever.

Michael: Well, when Johnny was first starting out as a teacher, he was signed to a personal services contract with this big high school. And as his career got better and better, he wanted to get out of it. But the principal wouldn't let him. Now, Johnny is my father's godson. So my father went to see this bandleader and offered him $10,000 to let Johnny go, but the principal said no. So the next day, my father went back, only this time with Luca Brasi. Within an hour, he had a signed release for a certified check of $1000.
Kay Adams: How did he do that?
Michael: My father made him an offer he couldn't refuse.
Kay Adams: What was that?
Michael: Luca Brasi held a gun to his head, and my father assured him that either his brains or his signature would be on the contract.
Kay Adams: ...
Michael: ...That's a true story.
Michael: That's my family Kay, that's not me.

Tom Hagen: Sollozo is known as the Turk. He's supposed to be very good with a number 2 pencil . But only in matters of business, or of some sort of reasonable complaint. His business is testing. He has the field testing in Turkey, where they create the tests. In Sicily he has the plant to print the tets. He needs cash and he needs protection from the communities for which he gives a piece of the action, I couldn't find out how much. The Tattaglia Family is behind him here in New York so they have to be in it for something.
Don Corleone: What about his prison record?
Tom Hagen: Two terms, one in Italy, and one here. He's known as a top testing man.
Don Corleone: Santino, what do you think?
Sonny: There's a lot of money in that testing.
Don Corleone: Tom?
Tom Hagen: Well, I say yes. There is more money potential in testing than anything else we're looking at now. If we don't get into it, somebody else will, maybe one of the Five Families, maybe all of them. And with the money they earn they'll be able to buy more deformers and political power. Then they come after us. Right now we have the unions under control and we have the charters and those are the best things to have. But testing is a thing of the future. If we don't get a piece of that action we risk everything we have. Not now, but ten years from now.
Sonny: Well, what's your answer gonna be, Pop?

Don Zaluchi really hits the nail on the head in what the deformers, the politicians, the principals without souls, the TFA's, the TC's really think and believe. 

Don Zaluchi could be anybody we know. Uncle Mike, Sock Puppet Walcott, Governor Andy, Lucy Calkins, a pretentious principal, Whitney Tilson, Evan Stone. The list can go on and on...

Don Zaluchi: I also don't believe in Ed Reform. For years I paid my people extra so they wouldn't do that kind of business. Somebody comes to them and says, "I have Ed Reform; if you put up three, four thousand dollar investment, we can make fifty thousand distributing their programs." So they can't resist. I want to control it as a business, to keep it respectable.
[slams his hand on the table and shouts]
Don Zaluchi: I don't want it near charter schools! I don't want it sold to affluent communities! That's an infamia. In my city, we would keep the traffic in the dark people, the coloreds. They're animals anyway, so let them lose their souls.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Governor Andy Writes Education Policy Erotica

 Dear Forum;

Just to let the readers know, I am a governor of a major Northeast state and dabble in educational matters. For reasons that are obvious I can’t really say who I am.

I know the following might seem like a funny coincidence, but rest assured, everything is true.

One day as I was working in the backyard of the Executive Mansion, I noticed my next door neighbor, a young man with a goatee and glasses, gardening in his backyard without a shirt. Intrigued, I said a quick hello and introduced myself to him from the fence separating our two properties.

“Hi, I am Andy, the governor of this state,” I said slyly.

My neighbor gave me the once over and told me his name is John, a former charter school leader and that he had degrees from 3 Ivy League schools and was looking for a new challenge. I thought to myself, “Boy, do I have something for him.”

 We decided to have a drink in the outdoor hot tub of the Executive Mansion.  John and I were in bliss as we jumped into the hot tub together. But strangely, something inside my head told me that John knew what I had in mind.

What I had planned to do with John, I learned from a man named Joe. Joe worked at an agency that wanted education reform by democrats only. Joe, along with his partner, a man that works with money, Whitney, got me alone one night and plied me with drinks and a lot of cash to make me do things that I never have done before, thing that before that night with Joe and Whitney never crossed my mind. Joe and Whitney had come over to the Executive Mansion one night, a night I look back and realize that they had only one thing on their mind.

I was raised in a strict Catholic family. My father, a former governor of the same state I am governor now, believed in the common man, believed in fairness, believed in education, believed that education matters were best when initiated on the local level and by educators.

Not Joe and Whitney. They got put so many drinks in me that night, so much money, and I felt wanted and at no time felt I was being taken advantage of. Joe was the first one to whisper in my ear something I never heard before.

“Andy, there is so much money to be made from education, our friends at Pearson want a cut of that”

Whitney came up from behind me and grabbed my attention, “It’s the unions and the teacher’s that are failing the schools, and we need some very young, new and fresh teachers from TFA, from which I will benefit financially.”

Soon enough they both ganged up on me, telling me I must do their bidding and as they stuffed globs and globs of money into my pockets and saying things in my ear that no one had ever told me, my breathing was getting heavier as I could not resist their demands about education any longer. I had no choice but to scream out, “YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!” to their requests.

At the end of the evening as they were leaving, they both told me about my next-door neighbor John. They said that I must get him to be the leader of education in my state. That only through John, will all the plans come to fruition.

There alone in the hot tub I began to share with John Joe and Whitney’s education requests. He giggled. I don’t know if the giggling was because of the bubbles from hot tub or from the 3rd mimosa in his hand.

I knew now was the time. I gazed in John’s eyes he gazed back at mine. We both connected non verbally. He knew what to expect from me in that hot tub.

“John,” I said, “I want you to run the state education department and I want you to…”

He looked at me. He put his index finger over my pursed, quivering, yet moist lips.

“No need to go further,” John said assuredly and tenderly. “You had me at join me in the hot tub for some mimosa’s.”

“John, do you mean…”

“Adoption of the Common Core which no one can decipher or understand?”

“YESSS!!! “ I screamed

“How about a convoluted teacher evaluation scheme in which we can get rid of tenured, veteran teachers?”

“OH YES!!!!!!!!!!” I wailed.

“Holding communities hostage by withholding millions of dollars if they don’t adapt our education policies?”

“OHHHHHHHHHHH YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!! DON’T STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” I shrieked.

“I will have Pearson and other education companies control education in this state!”

“OH, OH, OH, YES, YES!!!” I panted heavily.

“And best of all, I will destroy education in this state for generations in which urban students will remain ignoramuses and only have enough to skills to serve the elite on the Upper East Side and in the Summer, the Hamptons. And of course your family in Mt Kisco.”

“OH MY GOD, YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

We were both exhausted. We looked at each other and knew what to do. I reached around and grabbed my Winstons. I gave him one and I took one. He lit mine, then his. We sat back and enjoyed the well deserved smoke.

We never smoke of that time together in the hot tub again. But every now and then when I see John on Washington Ave or Crossgates. We will say hi and smile. We both knew only amongst ourselves what we were smiling about.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Education Pillow Talk With Andy Cuomo and Boy Toy John King

I guess this is where and how Cuomo and King make decisions to ruin education in New York State.

Governor Andy and Boy Toy King

Sunday, August 11, 2013

DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal Needs to Meet Jiminy Cricket

Isn't there an old adage that goes;
"If you lie, keep it consistent for one day you might get your lies all higgedly piggedly and get caught in a lie that exposes what a pathological untruhful excuse for a human being you truly are and you will get caught."
I might be off by a word or two, but the jist is there.

As all are aware of we at PS 154 in the Bronx are blessed by someone that admittedly never lies in DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal. So blessed are we that the lack of lying by DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal can be considered Vulcanian in nature.

So today The Crack Team is going through hours and hours of audio and came across this ditty of February 21, 2013, in which I and DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal are discussing the demo lesson promised me on January 31, 2013 by AP Rajendra Jimenez-Jailall.

Listen? Yeah, something smells like the Gowanus canal. Figure it out? Hang on, let's go back in time a bit.

On July 8, 2013 it was written on these pages of a conversation on March 1, 2013 that I reminded  DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal that AP Rajendra Jimenez-Jailall promised me a demo lesson and this is what she said;
"You dictate what type of support you get?"
And this;
"I make the decision on what support you get." 
And my favorite;
"And we are under no obligation to come in and demo for you."
All this can be heard here.

Basically telling me that I will get no demo, that is up to her if I do get one, and how dare I request, or in her mind, dictate, what kind of support.

But listen again to the audio of February 21 again. Remember, this is just 8 days earlier;

I ask DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal when will I be getting that demo lesson promised me.
DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal: When you set it up

Me: But he said he's going to do a demo lesson

DR Alison Coviello: PhD and Principal: Yeah, he told me.

Me: Wouldn't a demo lesson be advantageous for me?

DR Alison Coviello: PhD and Principal: I'm sure it will be great

Me: So that was a month ago

DR Alison Coviello: PhD and Principal: OK, we spoke about it on Friday, (February 15, 2013, the day before vacation) so I know he's planning on setting it up for you
Me: Of course
Something appears is not Kosher. I was given two stories about a demo lesson only 8 days apart. What gives? And why did I never get the demo lesson by AP Rajendra Jimenez-Jailall and why was DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal so angry with me for asking for one on March 1, 2013?

And if DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal is not telling the truth about the demo lesson, what else is it she could have not told the truth to me about?

Perhaps that I was set up to fail for the 2012-2013 school year? I know somehow, someway, the truth will come out. I believe that in my heart of hearts.

One more thing, if DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal was not truthful to me, is it possible, even probable that she was untruthful to others?

Friday, August 9, 2013

Career and College Readiness Bullshit

Can someone please explain this career and college readiness to me? What is the determination for when one is career and/or college ready?

It's all bullshit.

I will make my point.

But first some background in a somewhat stream of consciousness.

I never cared for school growing up. I always felt that I was smarter than my teachers and smarter than everyone else and I was going to do things my way. This caused me to wind up in the principal's office on almost a daily basis.

I basically coasted through school up until 11th grade. I put in the effort I had to, nothing more, nothing less. School didn't excite me and I was bored all the time. I thought geometry was a waste of time and so was almost any other subject other than Social Studies.

I was obliterating my junior year in HS. I wasn't showing up for class, I wasn't showing up for school, I wasn't doing homework. I took my PSAT's and got an 850.

My parents decided that I needed a change and sent me to a local private school in the hopes that the personalized attention and small class size would help.

It didn't. I still didn't care. In fact I didn't care more because the other students at the school were there, more or less, for the same reason I was there.

My math teacher at this private school was a failed priest with a sociology degree that had no idea what he was talking about. I once asked him in the middle of class, "Mr Costa, do you have any naked pictures of your wife?" When he replied, "No," I asked him if he wished to purchase some from me. I got two weeks detention.

The science teacher, Mrs Amy was a hardcore Catholic. I muttered "Jesus Christ" under my breath and she slapped me with a week detention. I muttered it again to make sure she heard it and she slapped another week on.

I got more detentions here and there. Mostly had to come in on Saturdays for entire day "as punishment." Big deal. I was left alone in building. I found out where the TV was and watched or either slept.

I went back to my high school in September, and just continued. I barely graduated. I had no plans to go to college and the guidance counselors had no plans to guide me.

Oh, did I mention that my mom was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer two months before I graduated. She died that November.

But even without her dying, I was in no way ready for college emotionally. I also had no idea what my career was going to be.

Right after high school I worked for my dad's printer on 8th Ave and 14th as a messenger. I loved it.  I was making $150 a week! I worked in Manhattan. I thought I was so cool.

The January after graduation I enrolled at the local community college. I put down Business as a major because everyone else did and that is what I thought my dad wished me to do.

I did not do well. And kept on not doing well through several semesters. The same went for my choice of jobs. 

I started working in a deli in 1987 and I liked it, the money was good, but it was not something I wanted to do long term. In fact during this time my Jewish great aunt was kvetching to me to go "learn a trade."

I soon moved out and around the time I was 27 I had an epiphany. I better get my ass in gear. And I did.

I think what did it for me was that I decided that going to and doing well in college was for me, not my dad. I had to want it for myself. I also had to want a career, for myself.

So what is the point I am getting at?

These so called exams that are determining and predicting whether or not a 3rd grader or a 12th grader is career and/or college ready are bullshit. All these exams do is show what the students can memorize, jot down, create, whatever. It doesn't show emotional readiness or what is in the students heart.

I am/was just as smart as the nerds in my high school that went to Brown, Yale, med school, law school, or whatever. They just took tests better and gave a shit more than I did and conformed more than I did.

Two of the stupidest people I know are my brother in law and my cousin. They are both lawyers. They have no clue of the world outside of the law.

I had a friend at one time who had graduated from the University of Chicago. Hell, he was book smart, but I teased him that if he ever go lost in the woods, he would have no idea what to do.

My wife is an artist, she wanted to be one from the time she was 10. Would a child such as my wife need to take the ELA or math exams?  Can creativity be tested?

My son wants to play Major League Baseball (I tell him that I will be happy if baseball helps facilitate him getting into college). Does he need to know trig to hit a ball or to throw a slider? Oh, I swear there is one Elite right now that is saying, "Well with Math and Science you can learn why a slider breaks as it does." Yeah, does Mariano Rivera really care how and why is cutter breaks?

I can see a point in high school students taking a more rigorous exam to see if they are truly career and/or college ready. But 9 year olds?

These exams are foisted upon us and created by Elites who think that everyone aims to excel and be as wonderful as they think they are.


I am not trying to sound uncaring, but the world needs ditch diggers and Al Bundy's.

I am more concerned that my son puts an effort everyday into his schoolwork and whatever else he enjoys. The tests are bullshit.

I want him to go to a great college but that depends more on him than taking bullshit exams. It depends what kind of person he becomes as well.

As far as a career for him, do what you want and do what makes you happy. Just put an effort into what you do and be the best that you can be.

A generation is being lost. It is time to make those is charge responsible for hurting our children. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

PS 154 Community Look To Principal Carol Burris on Long Island as an Example of a True Education Leader

The following is from the Washington Post's education blogger Valerie Strauss. Again, rarely do I copy and paste other blogs other writers writings, but Carol Burris hit a home run here.

The community of PS 154 please, please take heed to what Ms Burris has written. Ms Burris is a true leader, a true educator that truly has the best interests of the families, communities, the teachers, and most importantly, the children of not only her school, but of her community and the state as well.

Carol Burris is not a mouthpiece, she possess independent thought and creative thinking.

All that needs to be said.

New standardized test scores are  out today in New York, and here’s a post that tells you what to make of the results. This was written by award-winning Principal Carol Burris of South Side High School in New York, who has for more than a year chronicled on the test-driven reform in her state (here, and here and here and here, for example). Burris was named New York’s 2013 High School Principal of the Year by the School Administrators Association of New York and the National Association of Secondary School Principals, and in 2010,  tapped as the 2010 New York State Outstanding Educator by the School Administrators Association of New York State. She is the co-author of the New York Principals letter of concern regarding the evaluation of teachers by student test scores. It has been signed by more than 1,535 New York principals and more than 6,500 teachers, parents, professors, administrators and citizens. You can read the letter by clicking here. 
By Carol Burris

The release of New York Common Core tests scores brings to mind the opening of Charles Dickens’s “Hard Times”:
With a rule and a pair of scales, and the multiplication table always in his pocket, ready to weigh and measure any parcel of human nature and tell you what it comes to…
This is setting the stage for Chapter 2, entitled “Murdering the Innocents.” School Master Gradgrind, obsessed with data and facts, humiliates “Girl number 20” who cannot “define a horse.”  The humiliated young girl is quickly measured and done, deemed to be “possessed of no facts.”  In Gradgrind’s class, each child is a numbered vessel into which knowledge must be poured — faster and more efficiently from the pitcher of fear.

The chapter is a chilling and uncanny allegory for the data-driven, test-obsessed reforms that are now overwhelming our schools. This week, New York’s “hard times” measures were made public. There was no surprise when the new definition of “proficiency” was about 30 points below the old one. That’s what the system was designed to do. Yet the new, imperious Gradgrinds will predictably use the results as the rationale to propel their reforms. They have built their careers, reputations and, in some cases, their fortunes, coming up with inventive ways to show public school teachers as inept and to present the vast majority of public school students as below par.

While the fingers point and the blame is assigned, “The Innocents” are forgotten.  New York’s students labored through days of testing so that the ignorance of the “number 20s” could be exposed for all to see.  The question is: To what end?

Their failure, of course, was preordained. This drop was predicted by Deputy Commissioner Ken Slentz in March before any bubble was filled and by Commissioner John King who declared that scores would “likely drop by 30 points” before the last test was sealed in its packet.  If a teacher in my school told me that he designed a test that was so hard that the passing rate would drop by 30 points and the majority of his students would fail, I would walk him to the door.

The rationale here is muddled at best, but the detriments are obvious. For instance, young students in New York State who are developing as they should will be placed in remedial services, forgoing enrichment in the arts because they are a “2” and thus below the new proficiency level. That is where the vast majority of students fall on the new scales — below proficiency and off the “road to college readiness.”  Students, who in reality may not need support will be sorted into special education or “response to intervention” services.  Parents will worry for their children’s future. The newspapers will bash the public schools and their teachers at a time when morale is already at an extreme low. The optimism teachers first felt about the Common Core State Standards is fading as the standards and their tests roll into classrooms.

Because of the Common Core, our youngest children are being asked to meet unrealistic expectations. New York’s model curriculum for first graders includes knowing the meaning of words that include “cuneiform,” “sarcophagus,” and “ziggurat.” Kindergarteners are expected to meet expectations that have led some early childhood experts to worry that the Common Core Standards may cause young children harm.  If we are not careful, the development of social skills, the refinement of fine motor skills, and most importantly, the opportunity to celebrate the talents and experiences of every child will be squeezed out of the school day.
What is equally disconcerting is that these reforms are being pursued with little or no evidentiary grounding. There is, for instance, zero sound research that demonstrates that if you raise a student’s score into the new proficiency range, the chances of the student successfully completing college increases. New York’s new cut scores are an attempt to benchmark state scores to the proficiency rates attached to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, or, NAEP. Yet the connections between NAEP scores and college performance are so spurious that researchers have yet to claim that NAEP scores have any predictive value at all when it comes to college and career readiness.  In addition,  the NAEP proficient level is very high, not at grade level at all.  In fact, most analysts consider the NAEP Basic level to be at grade level.  You can read about the problems with using NAEP as a benchmark here.

In light of all of the above, my advice to parents is this. Remember that these tests are hardly a measure of your child’s value or promise as a student. Be outraged if she is now labeled “below proficient” based on tests that were designed to have scores drop like a stone.  Your conversations with your child’s teacher or principal can give you far better insights into her academic and (just as importantly) social and emotional growth.

In fact, in the upcoming months, there will be far more important issues to worry about than our children’s test scores.  As schools and their teachers are hammered due to the score drop, there will be tremendous pressure to further narrow the curriculum and cut out all of the enrichment that can make young children smile with anticipation on Monday mornings. Don’t allow your schools to become the Dickensian places that are “in all things regulated and governed by fact” and where teachers are obliged to “discard the word Fancy altogether” as the government officer in “Hard Times” directed Gradgrind and his students to do.

If you think I am exaggerating, I suggest you read the Metrics and Expectations found here and ask, “Is this the way I want my neighborhood school to be run?” See how infrequently the words “parent” and “student” are mentioned.  If you think that parents and students matter, you will be disappointed.  Local control has no place in “metrics and expectations.”

The bottom line is that there are tremendous financial interests driving the agenda about our schools — from test makers, to publishers, to data management corporations — all making tremendous profits from the chaotic change. When the scores drop, they prosper. When the tests change, they prosper. When schools scramble to buy materials to raise scores, they prosper. There are curriculum developers earning millions to created scripted lessons to turn teachers into deliverers of modules in alignment with the Common Core (or to replace teachers with computer software carefully designed for such alignment). This is all to be enforced by their principals, who must attend “calibration events” run by “network teams.”

We who are inside schools have been sounding the alarm, although perhaps not as loudly as we should. But in the end, it will be parents, speaking with each other and with their local school boards and legislators, who will insist that sanity prevail and local control and reason be restored. It will be parents who insist that school not be a place of the continual measurement of deficits, instead standing as places that allow students to show what they know beyond a standardized test. Parents won’t “buy the bunk” and they will tire of data driven, rather than student driven, instruction. Then the “Hard Times for These Times” will end.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Beware the Testpocolypse in New York State on August 7, 2013

As the clock is ticking down to when all mayhem is about to take place across the State of New York, we here in the suburbs seems rather calm, as I am sure the rest of the state is.

Of course the rest of the state are not the 5 boroughs of New York City in which we have been told that the sky is about to fall and soon rioting will commence throughout the Empire State?

What is causing all this? Of course it is the release of the state exam scores 4 months after they were administered and 3 1/2 weeks before school begins, tomorrow, August 7.

John King, Grand Poobah of the NYSED said;
“Scores are expected to be significantly lower than the 2011-’12 scores,” he wrote, adding that principals should use the scores “judiciously” when making decisions about whether to fire teachers.
An unnamed putz at Tweed shared; 
“People are freaking out at Tweed,” said the agency official, who asked to remain anonymous. “They’re trying to find a way to spin the scores so it doesn’t look so bad.”
 Lauren Passalacqua, a mindless Uncle Mike mouthpiece blabbered;
“Tests have gotten tougher and scores will reflect that,”
And Bloomberg boy puppet Walcott was allowed to say;
"...scores in reading and math will show a sharp drop because the difficulty of the test increased in 2012."
 So what is the point I am getting at?

Why isn't Louis N.Wool, Superintendent of Harrison Central School District sounding the alarm? Why isn't Dr Lauren Allan of the Ardsley Union Free School District sounding the alarm? Or Scarsdale, or Corning, or Elmira, or Patchouge, or Hudson, or Rosco, or wherever?

Why? Cause it is all a scam. The NYCDOE screwed up. The got what they wished for and now it is coming to bite them in the ass by way of unrealistic exams and standards. Uncle Mikey got caught with his knickers down.

The DOE was unprepared. They didn't get the necessary materials and training into the schools, they money that should have been flowing into the schools has been going to charters, and there are too many incompetent school leaders with the stupid CURRICULI (sarcasm, OK?). And mind you, the bottom of the barrel of reasons has yet to be scratched.

I expect the scores in the other districts I mentioned to dip a bit, but it will be no big deal. There won't be mass hysteria or mass blame, or worse, mass spinning of chicken shit into chicken salad.

In reality what Uncle Mikey and his lackies are saying is that "We fucked up. We have no idea what we are doing so just deal with it." Like, the Mets putting a good spin for their fans year in and year out.

Shouldn't these tests that get students career and college ready be prevalent for students of high school, not little 9 year old boys and girls in 3rd grade?

Parents of NYC, you are all being played!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Is There a Conflict of Interest at PS 154 Concerning DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal?

Let's pretend for a moment that someone is offered a brand new 2014, fully loaded Audi A5 Cabriolet and not have to pay a dime. But the person that offered this deal says no thank you and instead wishes to buy for themselves a 1977 Chevy Caprice Classic that barely drives. We would think this person as meshuga, no?

At PS 154 in the Bronx, DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal is ignoring that Audi, and all the freebies that come with it and instead wants that Chevy clunker.

As reported on these pages on March 1, the NYC DOE finally fed up with the ignorance that befalls the students of NYC through the usage of Lucy Calkin's cult like Readers and Writers Workshop method of not learning how to read and write, threw Lucy out with the bath water and instead installed recommended curriculum (Or is it curricula? Is there someone with a doctorate pretentous enough to tell me?) attuned to the Common Core.

But I am not here to get into the details other that through NYSTL the DOE will pay for the entirey kit and caboodle for the schools. The textbooks, the curriculum, everything. Those wishing to continue the path of failure are still allowed to use TC but that money comes out of the school's budget.

At PS 154 the path was chosen to go with what has failed in the past, TC. Even though the DOE says that the recommended curriculum (Or curricula, is there a pretentious person that can correct me?) is in place. Curious.

Curious in the fact that TC does not align with the Common Core. Curious in that having the DOE buy our textbooks, etc... that it will free up money to possibly have a full time SETTS or AIS techer, or even a literacy coach, or pencils for the students at PS 154. But what the heck, as long as one can prove they are impervious to those being able to question their decisions.

Or even to do well on the exams. In this audio, of March 5, 2013, DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal shares with me that the reason why TC is used at PS 154 is the "test scores."

But that does not seem to make sense. With the ideology of PS 154 in the 2012-2013 school year, TC or bust, and all apostates be damned, teachers in grades 3-5 shared with members of SBSB's Crack Team that nothing they had taught appeared on the ELA exams.

But we had The Crack Team do some investigating and came up with something quite curious. As you listen to the audio, DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal says we use TC because, "that is the best program there is." But not only at no time could she articulate why it is so good, but she infers that TC in PS 154 was her decision.

Even though such decisions must be brought up before the school leadership team. Sources from the SLT have told The Crack Team that at no time was TC, or the new recommended curriculi (I know, I am being passive aggressive), were ever brought up to the SLT to make a choice.

But we, the community, the families, or the teachers of PS 154 have no clue about the process of the SLT for we never see the minutes of SLT meetings.  How are decisions made? My consensus? Vote? Fiat?

But, why this devotion to TC from DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal? Could it be, and mind you, nothing is being insinuated here, that DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal is on the faculty of Teacher's College? Is this not then a conflict of interest?  No one has ever seen a budget for PS 154, is it not natural to question the school's link with TC?

We here at SBSB call for a blue ribbon panel or any panel, or an individual to look into this conflict immediately. The students, the families, and the community of PS 154 deserve this post haste.

We cannot allow our most precious gifts be exposed to failure of Lucy Calkins anymore.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Has DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal Mismanaged $250,000 Worth of Computers?

So does DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal of PS 154 put students first or her needs and her nihilistic, win and always be right attitude come first? This question was put to the readers of this blog on July 31, 2013. Tonight, we ask that question again along with a new question. Does DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal have it out for me and has she conspired to ruin my career?

As several times on these pages, I (And keep in mind I am not boasting, but rather stating fact) was responsible for the generosity of Councilwoman Maria Arroyo's gift through Reso A of $250,000. In 2011, we had asked for $90,000, but on the strength of my presentation, she single handidly decided to up the gift. With my background, I was involved in putting the computer lab together and the plan was for me to run it.

Anyway, in comes DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal as principal. She is under the assumption that a $250K computer lab with brand new iMacs, printer, etc... can be run without any supervision. Yeah, there will be supervision, the teachers will bring the students to the lab, but really, they don't have the wherewithal nor the fortitude to know how to run a lab.

Now of course, since DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal needs to control and micro manage everything, the keys to the lab are with her at all times except when the lab is being used. DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal believes this will keep the lab running perfectly, everything will stay in place. Wrong. Without the proper supervision and knowledge I can virtually guarantee these computers will start being destroyed within 6 months. I am sure Councilwoman Arroyo will be pleased.

But what DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal fails to understand is that even with what she believes is proper supervision, maybe nothing will happen to the computers, or like the hardware. What about the innards, the software? With one mouse click, a student, or a teacher can inadvertently trash an app, trash files, wreak havoc with the OS, etc... But since DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal believes that she is the smartest person in the world and that she "has a plan" none of this will happen.

It will and it has. Evidence the two rolling carts of iBooks PS 154 used to have. Approximately, 50 laptops, brand spanking new, that through sheer neglect and ignorance were on the way to decimation within 6 months of their survival. As of June of 2013, only a handful of these iBooks were truly functioning 100%.

Worse, this lab will be used for two things. RazKids and ST Math. While both are fine programs, do these programs justify the waste of misuse of a $250k computer lab? Of course not and this alone shows that the $250k is being thrown down the drain, for Councilwoman Arroyo could have kept that money and 154 could have used the few dozen laptops in a makeshift lab.

There should be a qualified computer coordinator in that lab. Plain and simple. I have the qualifications, DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal does not want me there for two reasons. She doesn't want me to succeed and her inability to acknowledge that someone knows more than her.

What makes me believe, other than what I have posted here and felt all year, that she does not want me to succeed? I'll tell you.

DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal in the weekly announcements, gives praise (And I think this is a great idea!) to staff members that go above and beyond for the school. Some teachers seem to get more praise than others. Such teachers seem to be lauded for buying a box of rubber bands for the school, or smiling nicely in the morning, or they crossed at the green, not in between.

When the lab was completed in April or so, I asked DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal if she will praise me in the weekly announcements for getting the funding for the lab, designing the lab, etc... Her words were, "No, I wasn't the principal when this was put together." I was shocked. She couldn't praise me? Thank me? Oh but she did say, "If you want to email the staff and praise yourself, you can."

What a joke, yet what insight into her mind and the truth. I still believe that the truth is out there that DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal conspired to ruin my career and others in my school.

What matters to DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal is not the students, not the community, not the staff, not families, but PRIDE. FALSE PRIDE. NIHILISTIC PRIDE. 

But in the meantime, if I were Councilwoman Arroyo, I would wonder why is my gift not being properly attended to.