9/3/2013 – Charter School Scandals And Studies

9/3/2013 – Charter School Scandals And Studies

Jeff Bryant One comment
EON Newsletters
THIS WEEK: School Budget Cuts … Hungry School Kids … Income Inequality Matters … “Same” Is Not “Equal” … Problem With Common Core Tests


Charter Schools For Scandals

By Jeff Bryant

“Hardly a week goes by without news of a scandal or a study tarnishing the image of charter schools … What’s apparent from all these charter school scandals is that these schools need way more scrutiny and, yes, government regulation. But the charter movement and its ardent backers in state legislatures are adamantly against that … The myth of charter school magic is hard to crack.”
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Sequestration Nation: Back To School With Budget Cuts

Think Progress

“As children begin to head back to school for the 2013-2014 school year, many could find larger class sizes, less staff, and fewer upgrades to things like computers or textbooks when they arrive. That’s because the coming school year will be the first in which sequestration will make itself felt in all of the public school districts across the country … First schools to feel the impact were those on or near military bases and Native American reservations … and Head Start programs … But now cuts to all federal funding for education, including money that goes to special education, programs for English language learners, low-income students, teachers’ professional development, and many others will start to hit … Parents are also bracing for the impact, particularly those whose children rely on special education programs … Things will also get worse the longer sequestration is with us.”
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You’ll Be Shocked By How Many Kids Are Too Hungry To Learn In Class

The Huffington Post

“The vast majority of teachers and principals routinely see students that are ‘too hungry to learn,’ according to a report … Results show that 73 percent of teachers said they regularly instruct hungry students who don’t have enough to eat at home, and 87 percent of principals said they consistently see hungry students in school. As a result of such pervasive hunger, teachers spend nearly $40 a month buying food for kids out of pocket … Child hunger is a problem in urban, rural and suburban settings. Half of the teachers … said that hunger posed a ‘serious issue’ in their classroom.”
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When Class Became More Important to a Child’s Education Than Race

The Atlantic

In, “1963, black children lagged behind their white peers in school by more than three years. For poor children, the picture was somewhat more encouraging: Those in the 10th percentile of income fell behind the children in the upper echelon of wealth by about a year or so… Fifty years later, social class has become the main gateway – and barrier – to opportunity in America … The test-score gap between the children of the poor (in the 10th percentile of income) and the children of the wealthy (in the 90th percentile) has expanded by as much as 40% and is now more than 50% larger than the black-white achievement gap … Middle-class children are also falling further behind their affluent peers … The expanding class gap in education is likely a byproduct of the country’s widening income inequality. There’s been an explosion in spending by well-to-do parents on their children.”
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‘Same’ and ‘Equal’ Are Not Congruent Terms

Education Week

Teacher Tamara Fisher writes, “In spite of our reverence for all humans being of equal value, I think we are terribly confused about what that actually means in practice, notably in the world of education … Treating kids ‘the same’ and treating kids ‘as equals’ are two totally different things. Treating students the same means giving them identical amounts of instruction, identical lessons, identical learning materials, an identical education. Treating students as equals means acknowledging each one has equal value as a learner, which in turn means giving them each what they need to fulfill their value as a learner… Because they are equal in value, we should show each of them dignity as a learner. And showing a child dignity as a learner means providing the opportunities that that learner needs and is ready for … NOT giving a learner what he or she needs as a learner results in inequality of opportunity to become educated to one’s full potential.”
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The Test Of The Common Core

The Huffington Post

Author and Core Knowledge education advocate E.D. Hirsch Jr. writes, “We should be leery of the forthcoming ‘core-aligned’ tests – especially those in English Language Arts … Reading-comprehension tests are not based on the school curriculum … They are based on the general knowledge that students have gained over their life span from all sources – most of them outside the school. That’s why reading tests in the early grades are so reliably and unfairly correlated with parental education and income … The extent such tests claim to assess ‘critical thinking’ and ‘general’ reading-comprehension skill, we should hold on to our wallets. They will be only rough indexes of reading ability.”
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1 Comment

Jeff Bryant

September 3, 2013 at 5:40 pm

You might be interested in what is happening in Oregon and California with regard to the virtual school/charter school connection. Some interesting stuff happening.


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