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Jeff Bernstein

Report: ALEC education task force fabricates problems to sell solutions « Edu... - 0 views

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    "A new report by ProgressNow focuses on how the ALEC education task force has used a state-by-state report card to fabricate failure in state public education systems in order to create a sales opportunity for their corporate membership."
Jeff Bernstein

Education Week: Ed. Companies Exert Public-Policy Influence - 0 views

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    "...Those examples, and many others, suggest the influence education companies are trying to exert on policymaking and legislation."
Jeff Bernstein

Parent Trigger: No Silver Bullet - 0 views

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    "This brief reviews the history and current status of Parent Trigger legislation, presents a critique of the legislation, and suggests alternative ways to meet the stated goals of a Parent Trigger."
Jeff Bernstein

Inside ALEC's Education Task Force: Private Players Manipulating Public Education | Alt... - 0 views

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    "The author infiltrated ALEC's inner sanctum -- and what she saw was chilling."
Jeff Bernstein

Federal Mandates on Local Education: Costs and Consequences - Yes, it's a Race, but i... - 0 views

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    "Much is being sacrificed to meet both this expensive mandate and the newly enacted tax cap, all while serious challenges to the program's validity and the research upon which it is based remain."
Jeff Bernstein

ALEC, Ed-Tech, and the Privatization of Education - 0 views

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    "The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is a powerful non-profit organization whose membership is comprised of corporations and conservative politicians. This isn't merely a lobbying group, as corporate members craft legislation introduced at the state level that promotes free-market and conservative ideals - all behind closed doors."
Jeff Bernstein

Recent State Action on Teacher Effectiveness | Bellwether Education Partners - 0 views

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    "During the 2010, 2011, and 2012 legislative sessions, a combination of federal policy incentives and newly elected governors and legislative majorities in many states following the 2010 elections sparked a wave of legislation addressing teacher effectiveness. More than 20 states passed legislation designed to address educator effectiveness by mandating annual evaluations based in part on student learning and linking evaluation results to key personnel decisions, including tenure, reductions in force, dismissal of underperforming teachers, and retention. In many cases states passed multiple laws, with later laws building on previous legislation, and also promulgated regulations to implement legislation. A few states acted through regulation only.

    In an effort to help policymakers, educators, and the public better understand how this flurry of legislative activity shifted the landscape on teacher effectiveness issues-both nationally and at the state level-Bellwether Education Partners analyzed recent teacher effectiveness legislation, regulation, and supporting policy documents from 21 states that took major legislative or regulatory action on teacher effectiveness in the past three years. This analysis builds on a previous analysis of teacher effectiveness legislation in five states that Bellwether published in 2011. Our expanded analysis includes nearly all states that took major legislative action on teacher effectiveness over the past three years."
Jeff Bernstein

Governor Chris Christie Signs Bill Overhauling Teacher Tenure in New Jersey - NYTimes.com - 0 views

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    "It will be harder for public-school teachers in New Jersey to get tenure and easier to fire bad ones under legislation signed on Monday by Gov. Chris Christie that overhauls the state's century-old tenure law."
Jeff Bernstein

Christie Introduces Charter Regs, Bypasses Legislature | Education News - 0 views

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    "New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie submitted the new charter school regulations to the State School Board after the lawmakers failed to create their own guidelines."
Jeff Bernstein

The Wall Street Journal Covers Up ALEC Link To Anti-Union School Privatization Law | Bl... - 0 views

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    "The Wall Street Journal this morning failed to report ties between the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and controversial "parent-trigger" legislation that would allow parents to take over and convert public schools to charter schools. They also failed to report that the Journal's parent company, News Corp, is a member of ALEC. The Journal's treatment of the legislation also cited no criticism of the proposal, which has been described as an effort "to manipulate parents into letting [the charter school lobby] privatize more public schools."
Jeff Bernstein

Christie Said to Sign Tenure Bill Monday - Metropolis - WSJ - 0 views

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    "Gov. Chris Christie is expected to sign a bill Monday morning that would provide a sweeping overhaul of the tenure system for public school teachers, according to two officials with knowledge of the matter."
Jeff Bernstein

Louisiana Voucher Standards Criticized | TPMMuckraker - 0 views

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    Only a month before nearly 120 Louisiana schools are set to welcome their first voucher students, the state has finally released a slate of standards that approved schools must meet in order to receive both students and concurrent state dollars. And while the standards, created by Superintendent John White and approved by the state's Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) this week, are widely considered a step in the right direction, voucher opponents say the standards fall far short from the accountability they sought.

    Where every public school in Louisiana is subjected to a standardized slate of testing, the voucher students - who will bring an average of $8,000 in tuition from "failing" public schools to many that are affiliated with religious denominations - will only need to face testing if their new school has taken an average of 10 students per grade, or if the schools have accepted at least 40 voucher students into the grades testing.
Jeff Bernstein

Unions Contract Out to PR Firms That Work for Anti-Worker Groups - Working In These Times - 0 views

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    SKDKnickerbocker (SKD) is one of the top firms providing outside assistance to labor coalitions while raking in hundreds of thousands of dollars for work to undermine organized labor, particularly teachers unions. Led by Anita Dunn, a former White House communications director and current Democratic Party advisor, SKD has spearheaded state-based campaigns for Students First, the anti-teacher's union charter and school privatization group founded by former Chancellor of DC Public Schools Michelle Rhee.
Jeff Bernstein

Schools Matter: Democrats for Neoliberal Education Reform's Gloria J. Romero's Parent T... - 0 views

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    As the DFER veneer for right-wing "parent trigger" laws wears off, and more and more people see the privatization agenda for what it is, charlatans like Gloria Romero and Ben Austin have been scrambling to hide or minimize their ties to right wing extremists. The good news is that it isn't working, and that aside from shills like Andi Rotherham and Alex Russo even mainstream media journalists are starting to see through what the distinguished Professor Diane Ravitch refers to as the "Parent Tricker." Josh Eidelson's "Parent trigger": The latest tactic for fighting teachers' unions is a good example.
Jeff Bernstein

Capitol Confidential » Video: Scenes from evaluation disclosure debate - 0 views

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    Courtesy Kyle Hughes of NYSNYS, here's a montage of footage from the debates over Gov. Andrew Cuomo's bill codifying the release of teachers evaluations
Jeff Bernstein

Citizens for Public Schools | Compromise Averts Stand for Children's Destructive Ballot... - 0 views

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    Citizens for Public Schools (CPS) believes the compromise reached by the Massachusetts Teachers Association and corporate-funded Stand for Children would avoid the worst aspects of Stand's proposed ballot question, which was a deceptive and destructive proposal that failed to address real obstacles to educational quality and equity.

    The compromise was passed by the legislature and signed into law by Gov. Deval Patrick today, June 29. In exchange, Stand said it would drop the ballot measure it proposed to put on the November ballot.

    "Stand for Children has become a vehicle for a few billionaires who want to control how we run our public schools," said CPS President Ann O'Halloran, who was the 2007 Massachusetts History Teacher of the Year. "I'm relieved that Stand was blocked from achieving its full agenda, but CPS and our allies must be prepared to resist similar efforts down the road. We need to raise awareness of this as a national problem, not just a Massachusetts issue."
Jeff Bernstein

Special Education Change Is Pushed - WSJ.com - 0 views

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    The type of clothing worn in a family's home, the language spoken and other cultural markers could influence whether special-education students receive taxpayer-funded private-school tuition, under a bill passed last month by the New York state Legislature.

    Education officials would have to consider a student's "home environment and family background" when deciding the best setting for special-education children under the bill. Currently, decisions about private-school placement have generally been based on academics and the child's disability.
Jeff Bernstein

Vouchers in New York State? « Diane Ravitch's blog - 0 views

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    Legislation was introduced on June 15 proposing to repeal the Blaine Amendment in the New York State constitution.

    Enacted by many states in the nineteenth century, the Blaine amendment prohibits the allocation of public money to religious schools.

    The proposed legislation would clear the way for vouchers for religious schools.
Jeff Bernstein

Imposing White "Eurocentric" Education on Mexican-American Students in Tucson: The Supp... - 0 views

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    Battles over school curriculums occasionally make national news, but quickly fade. However, the banning of the Mexican-American studies program in Tucson has assumed much greater significance. The action precipitated by the Arizona legislature - and signed by Gov. Jan Brewer -- brazenly suppresses educating a multicultural society in a school district where the majority of students are of Mexican descent. The documentary "Precious Knowledge: Arizona's Battle Over Ethnic Studies" brilliantly details the energy and critical thinking of students in the Mexican-American studies program as compared to the bigoted cliches of the politicians seeking to deprive them of the knowledge that empowers non-Caucasian young people.
Jeff Bernstein

Diane Ravitch: So This Is Reform? - Bridging Differences - Education Week - 0 views

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    A few weeks ago, the state legislature in Louisiana passed Gov. Bobby Jindal's education reform bill. Louisiana now goes to the head of the class as the state with the most advanced reform package in the nation. Surely, the Obama administration must be pleased, along with the governors of New Jersey, Ohio, Indiana, Maine, Wisconsin, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Michigan. Unfortunately, "reform" today has become a synonym for dismantling public education and demoralizing teachers. In that sense, Bobby Jindal and his Teach For America/Broad-trained state Commissioner of Education John White are now the leaders of the reform movement.

    The key elements of Louisiana's reform are: a far-reaching voucher program, for which a majority of students in the state are eligible; a dramatic expansion of charter schools, with the establishment of multiple new chartering authorities; a parent trigger, enabling parents in low-performing public schools to turn their schools into private charters; and a removal of teacher tenure.
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