Hear Ye, Hear Ye! All (well, maybe just a wee bit) the news that’s fit to print… and even more that isn’t but is printed anyway. Of the articles I come across, some may be worth sharing even if I, and possibly you, aren’t supportive of what is being reported. There may be something of interest to you in this line up of articles.
Denver: Another Strike Against The Backdrop Of Bad Education Reform
Another teacher strike. I expect we will see more of them. Yes, pay is an issue but it seems reform measures play a big role in the strikes we have seen in the last year or so. The portfolio model appears to play a part in this strike. Peter Greene wrote about this model in a recent article called Portfolio School Management For Dummies. Here’s some quotes from Peter’s article about the Denver strike.
About the portfolio model being used in Denver…
Think of this type of model as a forced merger between public and charter schools, with the resulting entity run by charter philosophy.
Slowly becoming a private system
Since 2005, Denver has closed 48 schools and opened 70; most of the new schools are charter schools. Denver under portfolios is a slow-motion model of turning a public school system private, a New Orleans without a Katrina to clean out the public system in one fell swoop.
Big money, including out of state donations, have funded school board elections in Denver as it has in many other locations in recent years. The rich and the powerful attempting to influence and control everything? What happened to local control? There are places, Denver included, where voters aren’t always going with the best funded candidate.
Denver school board races have been unusually tempestuous. By 2013, big money was a regular feature of the elections, with the 2015 race drawing hundreds of thousands of out-of-state contributions, most funneled through Democrats for Education Reform and their activist arm, Education Reform Now Action (ERNA is not required to identify its contributors). 2015 was a successful race for reform candidates, but 2017, though it featured even more money (almost three quarters of a million from ERNA alone) saw two of the four reform-supporting incumbents defeated. Turns out not everybody believes the reformsters are headed in the right direction.
Chalkbeat revealed that the district has 1 administrator for every 7.5 teachers–197 total administrators.
Charter schools in particular tend to be top-heavy, with study after study after study showing that they spend far more on administrative costs than public school districts do.
Crucial biometric privacy law survives Illinois court fight
This is definitely a victory for privacy advocates.