Delaware and Poverty, How Far Have We Come In Six Years?

Delaware Poverty

I found this report online, and I have to wonder how far Delaware has come since the issuance of this report back in 2009.  In terms of the education part of the report, this has the corporate education reform hallmarks all over it.  This is pre-Race To The Top and Common Core in Delaware, but everything was gearing up for it, even when the Poverty Task Force started under Governor Minner back in 2007.

Are we going to reduce that poverty level by 50% in the next four years?  I hear teachers from the priority schools talk, and I hear stories that bring tears to my eyes.  It’s heartbreaking that we live in a state where this happens.  It angers me that our Governor is more concerned with implementing education initiatives that don’t tackle the problem of poverty at all.  As if rigor and assessment is the way out.

I see lots of familiar names in this report, and many I’ve never heard of.  I wasn’t really involved in education six years ago.  I see this report and wish I was.  It’s not just Wilmington where poverty exists.  I live in Dover and it is here too. It’s pretty much everywhere in our state.  I have to wonder why we “invest” millions upon millions of dollars in education with little or no results?

Smarter Balanced Contract With State of Washington, Lead State In Consortium

Smarter Balanced Assessment

Good fortune has allowed me to receive the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium Contract with the State of Washington.  Washington is the lead state in this consortium of states involved with this standardized assessment.  The usual vendor for the Smarter Balanced Assessment is American Institutes for Research.  Read this contract very carefully to see exactly what is involved in all of this.  From what I understand, this contract is applicable to any state within the consortium….including Delaware…

My HB 50 Letter


Minding My Matters

I sent this late last night to all members of the House Education Committee as well as all sponsors and co-sponsors of this important legislation.

“April 25, 2015

Dear House Education Committee Members;

It was my pleasure to be in attendance at the April 22 House Education Committee meeting and to hear the discussion and debate around HB 50. I was concerned about what I felt were a few areas of inconsistent messaging and inaccurate information, and I wanted to share my thoughts further.

During my public comment, I pointed out that many members of the committee demonstrated the basic issues with the standardized testing system. It is not lost on me as a parent and an educator that there needs to be both accountability and demonstration of student achievement. However, when the major concerns raised by many of the legislators present revolved around the “uneducated inner city parents” being…

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Kowalko FOIAs “Alan Jackson” and His Attorney, Surprise News At The End!!!!


Delaware State Representative John Kowalko and DelCog President John Flaherty sent another FOIA request to Governor Markell’s office.  This time they want all of the Governor’s “Alan Jackson” emails from March 27th.

I sent this out this morning to Governor Markell’s office as well:

In early December of 2014, I filed a FOIA request for all emails between Governor Jack Markell and the following individuals: Paul Herdman of the Rodel Foundation, Joel Klein of Amplify Inc., Michelle Rhee and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan from January 21st, 2009 until the present.  I did receive the request on January 12th, but I found it sufficiently lacking.  As part of another FOIA request from this office, another individual received emails between Governor Jack Markell and Michelle Rhee however there were none in this FOIA request.  Since information has recently been made public concerning a third state e-mail address for Governor Markell under the pseudonym Alan Jackson, I am hereby requesting all emails from “Alan Jackson” in regards to this prior FOIA request be included as part of this original FOIA request.  As the original FOIA coordinator Danielle Blount esq. informed me, I was not to be charged for this FOIA, I believe it would be necessary to continue to honor that.  While there are moments in this FOIA file where Alan Jackson is referenced, it is only when the Governor is actually forwarding e-mails from his official email to this Alan Jackson email.  None of the emails actually show where it was addressed to “Alan Jackson”.  Thank you, and I look forward to receiving the remainder of this FOIA request.