I found a very awesome website today that actually gives you the lobbying activity for each bill in the Delaware General Assembly. So who is making visits to Legislative Hall? This information comes from: https://egov.delaware.gov/Lobs/Explore/ExploreActivity where you can check on any legislative bill currently in session.
I just talked to Delaware State Auditor Tom Wagner’s office to find out when the audits for Family Foundations Academy and Academy of Dover will be released. FFA does not have an estimated date, but they expect Academy of Dover to come out in May. I asked if there are any other charter schools being investigated by their office. I was told “we have a report coming out on other charter schools.” I asked if they were of the same magnitude as Family Foundations and Academy of Dover. The response was that those two were reported to their office and both have been talked about in the public so they have made the fact known they are being investigated. But the office gave me no other information about which other charter schools are being looked at. But it is more than one, and whether this is an overall report or locked into specific charters was not provided.
When is the Delaware DOE going to do their job and not just authorize charter schools, but actually take part in State law which indicates they have to have a DOE representative on each charter school’s Citizen Budget Oversight Committee? This is beyond the point of absurdity. Enough DOE! You are making our state look like a bunch of idiots! Do your job and stop worrying about priority schools, standardized tests, teacher accountability and standards-based IEPs. Because this Department needs to be held accountable most of all! House Bill 53 needs to pass as soon as possible so these charters can stop taking taxpayer money and doing what they want with it! And if their own independent auditors can’t seem to catch these cases of taxpayer theft, maybe their own audits need to go deeper every year.
I’m all for choice. I know everyone thinks I hate charters, but I don’t. I hate the lack of transparency, the lack of fair practices, how they keep transportation funds after they have spent their budgeted amount, enrollment preferences that slight any student under any circumstances, the extreme amount of lobbying that happens for their benefit, the special education issues in many of them, the unelected boards, and the corporate education reform designed to create more charters while leaving traditional school districts out in the cold. There are good charters in this state, but the stink of far too many give them a bad name.
And please, Delaware General Assembly, let’s get House Bill 61 through the House Education Committee and out for a vote. This is what I will call the Kilroy bill: that all school boards have to record and post to their website all board meetings. Three years is enough! The people deserve to hear what these boards are saying!
Everyone is entitled to speak their mind. But it is usually more effective if it is your own mind.
On Wednesday, April 22nd, public comment from parents and teachers either in support or against House Bill 50 was given to the Delaware House Education Committee. One commenter, a special education teacher in the Milford School District named Jesse Parsley was in opposition to the bill. I was very curious why Mr. Parsley was speaking against the bill when the vast majority of teachers in traditional school districts support it. Jesse Parsley is part of the Rodel Dream Team of teachers in Delaware. So I decided to check out his Twitter account, and this happened:
I did some more research on Parsley, and found this on a blog of one of the contractors with the Delaware DOE: https://blog.learnzillion.com/2014/08/26/the-delaware-dream-team-pd-that-actually-impacts-your-practice/
In fact, many of the folks that spoke against House Bill 50 can be found here:
But what about Courtney Fox, not the famous actress, but the Head of School at First State Montessori Charter? She seemed like she didn’t have any vested interest in state assessments. Just a charter leader concerned about how parents opting out would impact the school’s test scores. No ties to Governor Markell, right? WRONG!
The Council of Chief State School Officers is proud to announce Courtney Fox as the 2008 winner of the State Teacher of the Year for Delaware.
Yeah, you can read and watch this here: http://www.pearsonfoundation.org/ccsso-toy/2008/de/autoplay
I was wondering why the Rodel cabal leader didn’t show up at the House Education Committee. But he did send some of his minions…