ON THE US SECRETARY OF EDUCATION
DeVos is a danger to America’s public education…if only because she is honest about her desire to destroy it. President-elect Trump has chosen someone for whom public education is anathema. He has chosen someone who has devoted her life to damaging public schools…on purpose. With DeVos, there is no pretense.
From Nancy Bailey
The appointment of Betsy DeVos as education secretary will offend every teacher in this country who has studied and committed their professional careers and lives to children.
And just in case you couldn’t tell what the President-elect’s opinion of public schools was by his nominee for Secretary of Education, Rudi Giuliani makes it clear.
From Rudi Giuliani quoted in American Prospect
President-elect Trump is going to be the best thing that ever happened for school choice and the charter school movement…Donald is going to create incentives that promote and open more charter schools. It’s a priority.
PRIVATIZATION: WHOSE CHOICE?
Not all private schools want your child…especially if he or she is expensive to educate.
From Nancy Bailey
Charters and religious schools might want vouchers, but most elite private schools don’t.
They don’t want to accept everyone. And they don’t want to follow rules and take directions from the government.
They often don’t want students with learning problems.
PRIVATIZATION: THE “MARKET”
From Samuel E. Abrams in the LA Times
The fundamental problem with the free-market model for education is that schools are not groceries.
TESTING MEASURES FAMILY INCOME
The answer to the question is, of course, an economic one. Tests measure family income. That’s why the largest Indiana teacher bonuses, which are based mostly on student test scores, went to teachers who taught wealthy students and the smallest bonuses were reserved for teachers of the poor.
From Chris Tienken via Peter Greene
Tienken and his team used just three pieces of demographic data–
1) percentage of families in the community with income over $200K
2) percentage of people in the community in poverty
3) percentage of people in community with bachelor’s degrees
Using that data alone, Tienken was able to predict school district test results accurately in most cases. In New Jersey 300 or so middle schools, the team could predict middle school math and language arts test scores for well over two thirds of the schools.
Here’s a still relevant 14 minute video by Chris Tienken.
Where’s the evidence?
WHAT DO WE DO NOW?
What do we do? We don’t remain quiet.
From Peter Greene
2) Do not wait for someone else to stand up. Do not count on someone else to advocate for what I care about. Do not leave it to someone else to call a Congressperson or a state official about the issues that matter. Especially don’t say, “That’s what I pay union dues for. They can handle it.” Call. Write. Speak up. Stand up.
MAKE A RESOLUTION
Acknowledging reality does not mean giving up without a fight.
From Jim Wright
Let us make a resolution.
Let us resolve, in the coming year, to be the people we believe ourselves to be.
…either we are the people we say we are, or we’re not.
Here are a couple of non-education related quotes…
From David Horsey
There is no question that if a Democratic president-elect were to show such a kinship with a Russian dictator while making so many disparaging remarks about the CIA and other American intelligence agencies, Republicans in Congress would be preparing articles of impeachment and the right wing media would be screaming “treason!” Odd how that is not happening now.
From Ed Brayton
Let’s be clear about what [Congressional Republicans] mean by defunding Planned Parenthood. They don’t give funds directly to the group and there is a longstanding ban on PP receiving any money for abortion services. The money that Planned Parenthood does get from the federal government comes mostly through Title IX programs that provide health services for poor women, things like pap smears, cancer screening, birth control and pregnancy tests. The last two of those actually help prevent abortion, for crying out loud.