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Jeff Bernstein

Asher Huey: Public Education Is for the Common Good - 0 views

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    Change.org's decision marks an important point in our fight for public education, and for America's best interests more generally. When astroturf groups undermine schools and workers, they are not acting in the best interests of children, parents, teachers or the community. This action, and others like it, show that clever names and rhetoric are no longer enough to hide corporate interests from communities determined to protect the common good.
Jeff Bernstein

Education Week: The Changing Face of Education Advocacy: Trickel Down - 0 views

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    A number of prominent foundations have supported the charitable wings of national education advocacy groups. The engagement of philanthropies in policy advocacy is a relatively recent phenomenon that roughly parallels such education groups' expansion over the past decade. This list details three foundations' investments; it is not a comprehensive list of all private foundation contributions, nor does it include local, public, or community charities' contributions.
Jeff Bernstein

Education Week: New K-12 Advocacy Groups Wield State-Level Clout - 0 views

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    If there is a clear sign of the growing influence of a new breed of national education advocacy organizations, it surely lies in their entry into state-level politics. That involvement has advanced the groups' similar policy priorities on such issues as overhauling teacher evaluation and expanding charter schools.
    The story of SB 191's passage in Colorado is among the most striking examples, but in just five years, groups such as DFER, Stand for Children, and the more recently launched StudentsFirst have helped shape legislative proposals in statehouse after statehouse.
    Although the list is not comprehensive and the details vary by state, their efforts include these examples
Jeff Bernstein

Education Week: New Advocacy Groups Shaking Up Education Field - 0 views

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    A new generation of education advocacy groups has emerged to play a formidable political role in states and communities across the country. Those groups are shaping policy through aggressive lobbying and campaign activity-an evolution in advocacy that is primed to continue in the 2012 elections and beyond.
    Bearing names meant to signal their intentions-Stand for Children, Democrats for Education Reform, StudentsFirst-they are pushing for such policies as rigorous teacher evaluations based in part on evidence of student learning, increased access to high-quality charter schools, and higher academic standards for schools and students.
    Sometimes viewed as a counterweight to teachers' unions, they are also supporting political candidates who champion those ideas.
    Though the record of their electoral success is mixed, such groups' overall influence appears to be growing, and it has already helped alter the landscape of education policy, particularly at the state level.
Jeff Bernstein

Advocating for Our Public Schools; A Long Island Treasure - 0 views

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    Slide presentation by Suffolk County School Superintendents Association and Eastern Suffolk BOCES.
Jeff Bernstein

A rare break from testing madness - The Answer Sheet - The Washington Post - 0 views

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    Last spring students, teachers and parents endured the outbreak of what we soon called "testing madness." On top of the regular state tests, teachers across Mecklenburg County were required to administer 52 new high-stakes standardized tests, part of then superintendent Peter Gorman's goal of testing every child in every subject every year. The tests were tied to a pay-for-performance scheme that was slated for rapid approval by the state legislature.

    We were racing down a fast track to nowhere.

    This year, however, the rush has slowed. The pay-for-performance legislation has stalled. Interim superintendent Hugh Hattabaugh announced recently that CMS was scrapping the 52 extra tests. For the moment, students and teachers can focus more on learning, and breathe a little easier.

    Why the change?

    People stood up for the kind of education they believe in.
Jeff Bernstein

What Happens When Teacher Voices Depend on Foundations' Choices? - Living in Dialogue -... - 0 views

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    But foundation support has, it seems to me, become more agenda-driven than in the past. And sometimes that agenda may have an influence on the direction teacher advocacy projects take.
Jeff Bernstein

Schools Matter: The trouble with Alexander Russo - 0 views

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    Russo's underhanded dig is followed up with his suggestion that billionaire funded astroturf groups like StudentsFirst, Stand For Children, and TeachPlus have the potential to correct what he perceives as an "imbalance." For Russo, the corporate education reform astroturf need to step up and post comments under articles, use twitter, blog, and avail themselves of social media. It simply isn't enough to be funded by the likes of the wealthiest one percent including names like Walton, DeVos, Broad, Bradley, Gates, Koch, Hastings, Dell, Powell-Jobs, Scaife, Tilson, et al. It's not enough to have the unwavering support of a bipartisan neoliberal consensus at every level of government including the most anti-public education administration and Department of Education of all time. It isn't sufficient to have the unquestioning editorial support of every mainstream media outlet-not to mention Rupert Murdoch's vast propaganda empire-all of which spew a nonstop stream of privatization propaganda with nary a dissenting note. This last point is of paramount importance, since it's often forgotten that outside the realm of privilege that has regular access to the Internet, there's a majority that obtains their information from more traditional sources.
Jeff Bernstein

All Things Education: When single-issue advocacy causes multiple-issue empowerment - 0 views

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    Education journalist Joy Removits recently wrote this article on the education "reform" lobby. The article was not particularly remarkable, but I did discern a bit of pivoting on the part of some of the organizations, such as Students First, Stand for Children, and DFER (Democrats for Education Reform) Removits wrote about. In particular, they talked about being "single-issue" advocates and financially backing politicians only based on their advocacy of issues the reform lobby pushes.
Jeff Bernstein

Education Radio: Stand for Children or Stand for Profit? - 0 views

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    Stand for Children's claim, that they are a grassroots organization that stands for access to quality education for all students, is appealing to many parents and educators. A closer inspection, however, reveals a very different agenda, one that is driven by vast amounts of corporate money and dangerous, ideology-driven notions of education reform. In this program we take a close look at Stand for Children and their controversial activities.
Jeff Bernstein

Shanker Blog » Education Advocacy Organizations: An Overview - 0 views

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    Education advocacy organizations (EAOs) come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some focus on specific issues (e.g. human capital decisions, forms of school choice, class size) while others approach policy more broadly (e.g. changing policy environments, membership decisions). Proponents of these organizations claim they exist, at least in part, to provide a counterbalance to various other powerful interest groups.
Jeff Bernstein

NOT Your Mother's PTA : Education Next - 0 views

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    The organization that claims to represent the voice and interests of K-12 students and their parents is the Parent Teacher Association, widely known as the PTA. The organization aims to provide "parents and families with a powerful voice to speak on behalf of every child while providing the best tools for parents to help their children be successful students." Founded in 1897 as the National Congress of Mothers, the PTA declared that it was "up to the mothers of the country to eliminate threats that endangered children." Today, its goal is a "quality education and nurturing environment for every child."
Jeff Bernstein

The selling of school choice | WisconsinWatch.org - 0 views

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    Walmart family heirs and others are changing the face of education in Wisconsin
Jeff Bernstein

Bills Affecting Americans' Rights to a Public Education - Alec Exposed - 0 views

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    List of ALEC supported legislation.
Jeff Bernstein

Education Notes Online: E4E: 3000 Members, 2900 Don't Show - Walcott And Crew Appearanc... - 0 views

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    The partnership between Tweed and E4E reached new heights when Chancellor Dennis Walcott brought his entire top team to meet with E4E on September 19 in an attempt to breathe life into an organization that despite an infusion of money paying for 5 full-time organizers cannot seem to get traction after its initial splash despite enormous media coverage (which I chronicle below).
Jeff Bernstein

Educators4Excellence Structure And Financials Revealed - 0 views

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    We here at SBSB pride ourselves at being at the forefront of information. We leave no stone unturned to find the truth. So it was with great pride when the crack team recieved some inside information on how Educators4Excellence was formed, its directors, financials, and by-laws. The crack team has just scratched the surface in what is known about the secret society that is Educators4Excelllence, but rest assured, the crack team will not give up.
Jeff Bernstein

Teacher for Sale - 0 views

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    Many years ago, through no effort (or fault) on my part, I became--temporarily--a Famous Teacher. What was most astonishing about this experience: a wide range of people (from broadcast media figures to the district Superintendent) suddenly paid attention to what I had to say about education. I was phoned and asked my opinion when critical education issues emerged in Michigan. I was offered positions on statewide task forces and columns in the local newspaper. I even shot a TV commercial supporting an education funding initiative, and flew around the state with the Governor on a promotion tour. Good times.
Jeff Bernstein

For or Against Children? The Problematic History of Stand for Children - 0 views

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    Last October, a friend called with a question: "What do you know about Stand for Children?" The advocacy organization, based in our hometown of Portland, Ore., was expanding into his state of Illinois, and he hoped to glean some insight into the kinds of reforms the group would support. Just two months later, Stand's Illinois branch had amassed more than $3 million in a political action committee and unveiled an aggressive teacher evaluation bill.
Jeff Bernstein

Blank Rome Lobbyists Sign Education Advocacy Group - The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times - 0 views

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    A New York-based education advocacy organization chaired by News Corp. Executive Vice President Joel Klein signed Blank Rome Government Relations to lobby the federal government on its behalf, according to paperwork filed with Congress Friday.
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