Tomorrow the Delaware State Board of Education will vote on Regulation 616. This regulation concerning school suspensions, expulsions, and out of school placements (alternative schools) is very controversial. I wrote in December about the Assistant Superintendent from Smyrna’s very funny letter about this regulation, but many more have come in and they are all very alarming. The biggest of which is one from the American Civil Liberties Union, as seen below:
That didn’t take long. The former New York City superintendent of schools, who is now the Acting US Secretary of Education is coming to Wilmington on Friday. Have any Secretaries of Education ever bothered to check out our schools outside Wilmington? Anyways, John King is coming to Kuumba Academy this Friday, and afterwards he is having a chat with civil rights leaders. Probably about opt-out and how we can fix the low-income, poverty-stricken schools with more corporate education reform, personalized learning, less assessments that actually help, and more Smarter Balanced type tests to keep the hedge funders nice and rich. Throw in some competency-based education for good measure… I’m sure the Governor will be in attendance as well.
And once again, only “credentialed” journalists are allowed. For God’s sake, keep the damn bloggers away!
John King is Acting Secretary because the US Senate will never confirm the guy. Talk to New Yorkers who are against education reform and they will tell you stories all night long! Of course he is going to Kuumba Academy in the Community Education Building. Maybe he would have gone to Delaware Met had they not shut down three days early. That would have been an eye-opener!
Here is the official press release from Alison May down at the DOE:
ACTING U.S. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION KING TO VISIT DELAWARE FRIDAY
Acting U.S. Secretary of Education John King will visit Wilmington Friday as part of his Opportunity Across America tour to discuss the state’s efforts to improve and reduce testing.
King will visit a classroom at Kuumba Academy Charter School prior to joining two roundtable discussions at the Community Education Building in Wilmington. The roundtables will include an assessment discussion with district and state leaders and legislators as well as a second meeting with civil rights advocates.
Credentialed journalists are invited to join King for the following:
9:20 a.m. Classroom visit (Kuumba Academy)
9:30 a.m. Hour-long roundtable discussion about better assessments
10:40 a.m. Press availability
10:55 a.m. Hour-long roundtable discussion with civil rights advocates
Members of the media who would like to join the visit should RSVP to Alison.May@doe.k12.de.us by noon on Thursday, Jan. 21.
The Delaware Met shuts its doors three days earlier than expected. Yesterday, the Delaware Met closed it’s doors to students for good. After threats to teachers and administrators including arson (burning the school down), property damage, and physical violence, the school shut down. Delaware Met’s official last day is January 22nd, this Friday. But the students, obviously not caring about any type of instruction the next few days, decided to coerce the school leader into giving them three days off by their actions.
Most of the board members resigned last week. There was talk about a potential lawsuit, but even the school’s own attorney didn’t think it was a good idea. And so ends the five month saga of the Delaware Met. Opened in August, closed in January. The school is under investigation by the Delaware Auditor of Accounts for potential financial issues. It is not known if their management company, Innovative Schools, is also part of that probe. Should First State Montessori Academy get their modification approved for an increase in their enrollment and going to 8th grade, the plan is to take over half of the property at 920 N. French St., where Delaware Met is now.
The Delaware Met had their charter revoked last month by the State Board of Education after violations of pretty much everything. The biggest violation was the lack of correct IEPs for the school’s 59 students with disabilities. Violence, including a student having their hair caught on fire, a student going to the hospital due to head injuries, and numerous fights led to a lot of police activity at the school. While finding one thing to blame on the school for their demise would be difficult, it became more than obvious this was a school that should have never opened in the first place.