In a shocking announcement, the Delaware American Civil Liberties Union wants to sue the State of Delaware over education funding. But the announcement was not made by the ACLU but rather a Capital School District Board of Education member at their meeting last evening. Continue reading “Delaware ACLU Planning To Sue State Over Education Funding”
In the near future, Sony and IBM plan on putting all education eggs in one basket: the Blockchain Ledger. This is very, very bad. Especially when Sony wants artificial intelligence to analyze the information for the classroom.
Beyond making it easier to share information, Sony said also that the stored data sets could potentially be analyzed using AI to provide feedback and improvement ideas for educational institutions and their curriculums and management.
According to Techcrunch, this wouldn’t roll out until next year and it is in the experimental stages now. The idea is to use some school districts as a model. What would be in this digital portfolio? Test scores, diplomas, education records which I can only assume will include social-emotional measurements, discipline records, and health records. While the system touts itself as being the most secure on the planet, that also means all that data would follow a student from cradle to grave. In the article, they talk about how it can be helpful for future employment. My fear is children will be judged based on test scores and potential behavior issues they might have exhibited when they were a teenager. To me, this is a huge mistake.
I wrote about Blockchain and its capabilities in education a year ago. Delaware passed it into law for banking purposes earlier this summer. Both Delaware Governor Carney and former Governor Jack Markell wanted those laws to pass. While much of that was for the financial viability of the state in getting Delaware in on the ground floor, the impact on public education was sure to be a discussion point during these decisions. Governor Markell has always touted himself as the “education Governor” and pimps many corporate education reform companies in Delaware and across the country.
The future I’ve been dreading is coming to pass, right before my eyes. Artificial Intelligence should never replace human decision-making capabilities but our education leaders seem to welcome this corporate invasion of public education. I have no doubt I will be writing more about this in the future. While we can all agree public education needs some changes, this is not the way to go. Our children’s future depends on human interaction, not algorithm, data sets and artificial intelligence. This was why all the states had to create longitudinal data systems during Race To The Top all those years ago. It wasn’t setting up Common Core. It was setting this up. Are we machines or are we human?
This is a concurrent resolution, but an important one. For years, Delaware has been floundering public education in our state. Senate Concurrent Resolution #38 would seek the opinion of the highest court in our state to find out if we are even following our own Constitution with what has been going on. For some reason it was left on the table during consideration in the Senate, which means they will get back to it at another time. But this is timely and necessary. Sponsored by Senators Bryan Townsend and David Sokola and State Rep. Sean Matthews.
To read the full text of the legislation, please go to the below document.
I should have been paying closer attention. Delaware Senator Bryan Townsend introduced a bill on May 5th. It cleared the Elections and Government Affairs Committee on May 17th. Now it is up for a Senate vote today. Let me be very clear: for all intents and purposes, this legislation will eventually destroy public education. Continue reading “Townsend’s Death of Public Education Bill Gets A Senate Vote Today…Say What?”
Today, the Rodel Teacher Council gave a presentation to the Delaware State Board of Education with policy recommendations for their Personalized Learning Blueprint. I’ve written about them before and actually received a bit of heat from a few of their membership. These aren’t bad people or bad teachers. I truly believe they have been brainwashed into the corporate education reform movement. Some may not even realize it. But what they came out with today for their State Board presentation literally frightens me and makes me wonder more than ever where public education is heading. I have to wonder if the State Board of Education would ever allow those who are against this kind of thing to give a presention to them.
This presentation has all the education reform buzz words in it: Personalized Learning, Blended Learning, Competency-Based Education, Micro Credentials, Seat-Time, Social and Emotional Learning, Waivers, Assessment, and Standards. To break it down, under these models the eventual goal is what is known as “stealth assessments”, the state assessment broken down in chunks at the end of each unit. The student can’t move on until they “master” the material provided to them from their digital technology. Predicting the future here, I imagine Delaware will eventually incorporate some kind of “digital badge” the student would get once they “master” the material (Colorado is at the forefront of this ridiculousness). Meanwhile, all the data from this ed tech is going to vendors galore. Personal and private data, every single keystroke.
So why are Delaware educators jumping on this bandwagon when it will eventually lead to the demise of the public school teacher? Your guess is as good as mine. Special standing, power, incentive for future mobility in their profession? Perhaps they are blind to how their actions today will lead to the end of their professional world as we know it. The fact that ANY Delaware school district teacher would get behind something with the Rodel name in it makes me suspect. Very suspect. The fact this council is going before the State Board of Education after they went to some legislators earlier this month makes me very worried. Worried that legislation is coming that will allow this Rodel Vision of Educational Paradise.
Make no mistake. This has been in the planning stages for years. And it will get a huge push in states once Blockchain Technology really gets going. And Delaware will be at the forefront of that initiative. People read stuff like this from me and some say I am wearing a tin hat or engaging in conspiracy theory. Let them. They said the same thing when I said Delaware’s Assessment Inventory Committee was just a big distraction from opt out and would produce nothing worthwhile. I said that before the legislation even passed which created that committee.
What is Governor Carney’s role in all this? I don’t think he has an original thought on any of this. I think his staff tells him what to do. Many of those staff members are fully aligned with this Rodelian future and have been for quite a while.
To read what the Rodel Teacher Council (aka Rodel) wants policy-makers in Delaware to subscribe to, please read the document below.
The Rodel Foundation of Delaware came out with a whopper of a blog article today over on their site. Entitled “Can Personalized Learning Defray The Cost Of Special Education?”, this article dares to suggest that personalized/blended learning can help save on special education costs. By daring to think Rodel’s version of personalized learning (a constant zombie state whereby kids are in front of a computer all day going at their own pace) is the Dante’s Peak of education, Doc Paul Herdman and the gang have just poked this bear again. I’ve stayed quiet with these absolute idiots for far too long. I am wide awake. Message received.
Why does ANYONE in this state swallow their absolute crap anymore? What happens when these students with disabilities, who are going “at their own pace”, fall even further behind? With this craptacular system, actual grades a student are in wouldn’t matter. And they still have to take the not-so Smarter Balanced Assessment. But in Rodel’s world, they want the stealth testing. These are standardized tests embedded in the digital technology slowly taking over the classroom in Delaware. Once a student masters the content, they can move on. So what happens when they don’t? What happens when they don’t get it? They fall farther behind. I warned about this public education hara-kiri for well over a year and half. Now, here we are on the cusp of it. NOW is the time for parents to stand up and say “Screw you Rodel” and to take back public education. Our policy-makers and state officials have been drinking the Rodel Kool-Aid for 12 years now. Enough. Rodel doesn’t own Delaware. We the people do. Kids gloves are off now Rodel! Fair warning! And Delaware DOE and State Board of Education, if you even think of pushing this crap in Delaware more than you already have, I will unleash the public education parent hounds on you! Fair warning to whomever wins the DSEA President: Back far away from this nonsense. Do not be a part of it.
A fate worse than death would be Jack Markell as the United States Secretary of Education under President Hillary Clinton. What Markell has done to Delaware education in less than eight years (twelve if you count his contributions towards Rodel’s plans) has been nothing short of a disaster. As one of the chief proponents of Common Core, Markell was the ringmaster for state accountability systems designed to perpetuate an endless cycle of high-stakes testing, school labeling, teacher shaming, and student rigor.
We now know Jack Markell really wants to be the U.S. Secretary of Education. John King is just filler until the next President. Town Square Delaware reported this morning that because John King stated Markell “has had his eye on this job for years” based on a Politico report about Hillary’s potential Cabinet posts. Granted, there are other contenders such as former Deputy Secretary of Education Jim Shelton, outgoing Chancellor of D.C. Schools Kaya Henderson, and even John King himself. None of those would be a good pick. If Clinton wins and picks any of these people, we will firmly know where she stands on education: she is a sell-out to corporations.
If Clinton wins and she nominates Markell as the next U.S. Secretary of Education, I will personally travel to D.C. to attend the Senate nomination hearing for Markell and testify against his capabilities to lead our country’s children. This would be a major step backwards, not forward. He is a corporate guy, not an education guy. He can’t stand parents butting into education, dislikes teachers, and goes back on his word constantly. This will not happen if I have anything to say about it. And I will not be the only one.
Do we really want a guy who allows state law to be circumvented by his administration. In the Chip Flowers FOIA scandal, Markell’s office is blocking sending out emails requested through a FOIA request because it has other legislators in the email. It’s called redacting those names! But Markell is shady, no doubt about it. But he is also good at covering up his tracks. Look at all the corporate tax loopholes he has created during his time as Governor. This is NOT the guy for education. The mail room for education? Sure. Not as the leader!
Just because The News Journal quoted John King as saying Markell has performed “nation-leading work” in early education does not qualify for him for this post. He has never been a teacher or even worked in public education. Think about that. Someone who only steps into a classroom to announce his latest agendas for corporate education reform…
I really can’t believe it’s been two years since I started this little experiment. I am more committed than ever to righting the wrongs in public education. With that being said, I need your help. What do you like about the blog? What do you hate? Is there something you want to see more of? Less? Am I too opinionated or not enough? Am I too mean or not mean enough? Do you like your stories to be journalistically based or with the flavor you come to expect on this blog? I came to the realization there is absolutely no way I can cover everything or please everyone. Education is a beast and growing by the day. There will always be heroes, villains, and those in-between. It’s getting very hard to understand motivations. As I’ve said before, I believe most people have “tainted decency”, meaning they are not 100% good and not 100% bad. I will have an article coming later this morning that will explore this notion. There are a few sides to this story.
Until then, thank you for the followers from the beginning of this blog, those who jumped on for the ride, and those who are just starting now. I appreciate all of you and your opinions, whether I agree with them or not. There are no easy answers with education.
This is a plea to Congressman John Carney.
You are running for Governor in Delaware. You haven’t officially filed yet, but you announced your intention last year. In Delaware, it seems like a certainty you will win the election in November. With that being said, I have some grave concerns with some of your education votes in the U.S. House of Representatives.
You voted yes for the following:
The Every Student Succeeds Act which yields to the states the ability to determine opt out procedures when parents don’t want their child to take the state standardized test. Even though ESSA states 95% of students must take the state assessment. The US DOE is ignoring the power given to states in this legislation.
You voted no for the following:
HR5: The Student Success Act. This legislation, the House precursor to the Every Student Succeeds Act, allowed for parent opt out for any reason and would not penalize schools for opt outs in their accountability report cards.
In Delaware, parents cried out to our legislators last year to act for their rights. While they were with us in the majority, when the time came for them to act again, many of them took the coward’s way out by not voting for a suspension of rules. Something many of them have no problem doing all the time. We don’t need another Jack Markell in Delaware. I think we are all done with him. His education legacy will be one for the history books, and not in a positive light in the long run.
Aside from attending Smyrna Day in the Smyrna School District and going to the Coding School in Wilmington, we really haven’t heard much from you on education. I’m sure you are relieved this hasn’t come up. But with ESSA regulations about to come out, it is essential that you let the voters of Delaware know your views on education matters. If you are to be the presumptive winner for Governor of Delaware, let it be a presumption with all of the facts.
As a son of two teachers, I am sure you have a high regard for education and the teaching profession. I would hope you don’t completely agree with many of the federal mandates from the past 15 years. It is very important that you let us know your thoughts. Let us vote with a clear idea of where you are coming from. I am hoping you lead us out of the education quagmire Governor Markell perpetrated on the First State. We want a Governor that supports parental rights as much as any other rights that you celebrate on social media so much.
I think you got a raw deal in 2008. Many Delawareans feel this way. Things could have been very different had you won back then. Perhaps high-stakes assessments wouldn’t become the bread and butter of all things education in Delaware. Perhaps our teachers would feel more respected by the state you hope to govern. Perhaps parents wouldn’t feel the need to opt out of the Smarter Balanced Assessment had someone fought Arne Duncan and the US DOE during the tumultuous Race To The Top years.
The time has come for you to speak about education in Delaware and what you are looking to achieve. If it is the status quo, which is not what Jack Markell states it is, but rather the complete sell-out of public education to companies who want privatization while funds seep out of classrooms and into the eager hands of hedge fund managers, then be honest and let us know that. If you want something different, something bold and a bit radical, let us know. Either way, your silence is deafening.
The Network for Public Education released their 50 State Report Card today and Delaware got a D. This is no surprise to me considering all the education policies Governor Markell has brought about in the last year. Frankly, I’m shocked we didn’t get an F. As Markell continues to tout his success with education, it becomes more clear how flawed his initiatives truly are. Below you can read the entire report card.
The United States Senate just passed the Every Student Succeeds Act. The controversial reauthorization of the Elementary/Secondary Education Act (ESSA) is now going to President Obama who is expected to sign the legislation. The US Senate has not released the roll call on this historic vote, but I will update this as soon as it is released. Meanwhile, Rep. Kline had this to say about today’s vote:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline (R-MN) issued the following statement today after the Senate passed a bipartisan, bicameral bill to replace No Child Left Behind and improve K-12 education:
Senators Murray and Alexander are to be commended for their leadership on a vitally important issue. They were the partners we needed in the Senate to get the job done. After years of delay, Congress is finally sending a bill to the president’s desk replacing No Child Left Behind with a new law that will reduce the federal role, restore local control, and empower parents. Those are precisely the kind of reforms parents, teachers, and state and local education leaders deserve, and I am grateful for all of the hard work of our House and Senate colleagues for helping to make these reforms a reality.
Known as the Every Student Succeeds Act (S. 1177), the bipartisan, bicameral bill will reform K-12 education by reducing the federal role, restoring local control, and empowering parents. The bill was approved by the House last week with overwhelming bipartisan support and will soon head to the president’s desk for his signature. To learn more about the Every Student Succeeds Act, visit edworkforce.house.gov/k12education.
And so it begins, again. Education is a very different world now, and we all know who we can thank for this. Welcome to the future of education, otherwise known as the death knell of public education.
At the State Board of Education Fall Retreat today in Dewey Beach, Dr. Steven Godowsky made his first big move as Delaware Secretary of Education, and it was not a good one. I have been writing the past couple months about the Accountability Framework Working Group and the Delaware School Success Framework. At their last meeting in early October, the group unanimously agreed not to have opt-out penalties where the proficiency rate of a school was multiplied by their participation rate for the school report card. They agreed to a lesser penalty whereby the school would have to write a report about how to improve the participation rate and no school could earn a status of “reward” school if their participation rate fell below the 95% mark.
Today, Dr. Steven Godowsky undid all the work this group did, their 14 months of meetings and discussion, and overrode their recommendations. That’s right, the same guy who told the New Castle County school boards at their combined school board breakfast just two weeks ago:
“It’s not a final decision, but it looks like from all levels of the department…that harsh sanctions will not carry the day,” he said. “There will be minimum sanctions that are required.”
So what made him override this? Looks pretty easy to me: he got confirmed by the Delaware Senate last week. If I had to guess, if he came across as the tough guy the Senate would have pounded him. I never thought I would say this, but thank you to Senators Greg Lavelle and Colin Bonini for saying no to this guy getting confirmed. All his lies about being more transparent and communicating better with the public. He just gave the middle finger to the public school system and parents in Delaware by doing this.
Godowsky is a water carrier for Governor Markell and his buddies at Rodel. He is NOT his own man, and he is a coward. He met with members of the Delaware Senate before his confirmation to talk about the changes he wants in the DOE. He will make no changes without Jack Markell whispering in his ear, I can guarantee that! This jacked up move of his assures the State Board of Education will vote on this and pass Regulation 103 which will put this into the books at their November 19th meeting. And now schools will be coming up with even more nonsense concerning opt-out of the Smarter Balanced Assessment.
Delaware Parents: Just refuse the test now. Do not lie down and let this happen. Let’s beat New York’s 20% opt-out rate, and get it up to 50%, or higher! The only way this cockamamie test is going to go away is unless we MAKE it happen. That’s right, We The People! I was starting to believe Godowsky’s line of crap about making things better. I know he has his defenders, and I’m okay with the heat I’m about to get, but this man is a liar! He is worse than Mark Murphy, because he does have the experience, and he is still okay with putting the screws to the public school system. And he used to run a few of them!
If the 148th General Assembly doesn’t override the House Bill 50 veto by the equally cowardly Governor, there is going to be hell to pay for those who say no. And if the leaders don’t even let it get to a vote, they will NOT be re-elected. I will make damn sure of that! We have all been victims of Jack Markell for far too long, and now he is on the cusp of completely destroying parental rights and the voice of educators. The State Board is in Markell’s pocket just as much as Godowsky. So we need to strike NOW!
Email your legislators today and start pounding the State Board of Education right away.
Delaware State Rep. Sean Matthews has had enough! Something I think many of us agree on! As the Delaware DOE announced the long-awaited and much dreaded Smarter Balanced Assessment results, folks immediately started crunching the data to see what it all means. On Delaware Liberal and Those In Favor, graphs were made showing the relationship between low-income populations in Delaware schools and the Smarter Balanced results. These graphs were very telling, and show these high-stakes assessments are not doing any favors for low-income students.
This is what State Rep. Sean Matthews had to say about all this:
Enough already! The corporate education “reformers” keep pushing their “test and punish” agenda. It’s failed. It’s failing. It will continue to fail until we address the endemic poverty plaguing some of our students.
The millions we spend each year on standardized testing is nothing more than “cash in the trash.” If we just collected parent/guardian’s income levels, we would get the same data. There is a direct and enduring correlation between a family’s economic health and school performance.
Don’t believe me? Check out these 2 graphs. One from Red Clay School District and one from Christina School District. Keep in mind that within each district, the curriculum, teacher training and governing district polices are the same. The only major difference is the % of low-income students from school to school.
Rep. Matthews hit the nail on the head! None of this is about the kids. It’s about other agendas which results in schools being labeled and punished. We have seen this sad tale all over America, in Chicago, Philadelphia, New Orleans and New York City. Why is it so necessary to turn public education into something it’s not? These are the tough schools. The ones where teachers go to, day in and day out. They don’t have to teach in these schools, they want to. They want to help these kids. It’s not for a paycheck, or to have the summers off. Their unions can’t protect them too much when a school is shut down over high-stakes testing results. They want to be, if they can, the difference in some of these students lives. I hear so many stories from adults who came from poverty, and very often, they reference a teacher who made a difference in their lives.
When is America going to wake up and realize these kids don’t need the labels. They don’t need companies and management organizations coming into their schools to “fix” them. They need consistency. They need compassion. They need what they already have. But the education reformers don’t think that’s enough. They would rather test these children, all the while knowing the tests they are giving to them are designed for failure, so they can “turnaround” a school. It all comes down to money, and it makes me sick to my stomach that anyone would use children in this manner.
Someone genuinely asked me if they should continue to send their child to a school like this or send them to a “high-performing” school. Every time a parent makes a decision in favor of the latter, they are killing public education, one student at a time. And that’s exactly what the reformers want. The data in these graphs says one thing. These tests are great for those with money and very bad for those without. It’s not about the caliber of the school, or the teachers, it’s about the world these children live in. The reformers can’t grasp the notion that if they spent their vast millions upon millions of dollars on actually improving communities and creating jobs, that would do far more for these children than any standardized assessment would ever do. That would be the real reform our children need.
We keep hearing how the Delaware DOE needs this data, and that parents need it. What does it tell you? You won’t see these graphs on the Delaware DOE website. But they are more important than any amount of data they will ever put out. Thank you Rep. Matthews for saying what so many of us are saying. You have a powerful voice, and we need you to speak for a long time.
*Thank you to Delaware Liberal and Those In Favor for creating these graphs!
A group called reClaiming the Conversation on Education released a petition today that is completely awesome! It covers everything I write about on here, and have since day one. This is our year to take back education!
In the grand scheme of things, six schools in the 2nd smallest state in the country really doesn’t amount to anything. But the six priority schools in Wilmington, Delaware could change the face of education. It’s not about making the schools better for the students. It’s about two forces colliding in a battle that’s been in the making for over a decade.
On one hand is Governor Markell and the Delaware Department of Education. Their public claim is the students aren’t reading up to their grade level, their standardized test scores are atrocious, and the beefed up funding will bring the schools back up again. On the other hand are the Christina and Red Clay Consolidated school districts. While Red Clay has already signed their Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and submitted it to the Delaware Department of Education, Christina is holding out and will vote on their draft MOU at their next board meeting on January 7th.
Both school districts have vehemently and publicly opposed the priority school initiative. The biggest demands, new principals at $160,000 a year and teachers must reapply for their jobs, has insulted and demeaned many individuals throughout Delaware. Recent Freedom of Information Act requests have shown a collusion with the major media outlet in Delaware, The News Journal. Meetings with the Delaware DOE have been cut short, and language from the Secretary of Education Mark Murphy to certain members of the public have been extremely rude. Murphy refused to answer questions from the public at a Wilmington City Council meeting in October. FOIA emails have also shown that event was largely planned by the Delaware DOE and the Governor’s office.
The methodology for the priority schools has been controversial since day one. The DE DOE has focused on these six schools, all within a square mile of the Community Education Building designed to hold charter schools. Bank of America donated this building to the state, and only two charter schools reside in the large building with another one slated to open in the Fall of 2015. Prior turnaround schools, such as Booker T Elementary School in Dover and Eastside Charter School in Wilmington have been held up as the biggest gainers in test scores, but mitigating factors have contributed to those increases, whether it has been rezoning of a district or massive expulsions changing the student dynamic and decreasing the size of a class by more than half.
So why should America care about these six schools in a city that was just labeled Murdertown, USA? Three words: Governor Jack Markell. He has taken a very active interest in education in this first state to sign the constitution but the last to follow. In fact, he was on the original committees for Common Core and he holds a very powerful position among US Governors when it comes to education. Many view him as a lame duck, which he is in Delaware. But nationally the man can continue the corporate education reform until 2020.
In 2012, there was talk about US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan possibly leaving his post, whether voluntary or by force. There were two names lobbied as potential replacements: Michelle Rhee, the former chancellor of schools for Washington D.C., and Delaware Governor Jack Markell. While Rhee has fallen from public favor, Markell is still seen by many in political circles as the new voice for education in America. The election of 2016 will work in Markell’s favor no matter which way it goes. If the President-elect is a Democrat, Markell could very well be picked as the new US Secretary of Education. If the country decides for a radical change and puts a 3rd Bush in office, Markell will still be picked for this slot. Jeb Bush is very high in the food chain for corporate education reform, and you can bet your bottom dollar Markell has been cozying up to the former Florida Governor.
It all comes down to the Christina School District Board of Education. As one of four school districts in Wilmington, Christina has always been the thorn in the DOE’s side. They are fighters, and they don’t take kindly to bullying by the state. Their refusal to follow the demands of the state with the priority schools has already put a chink in Markell’s armor. On October 29th, at the Rodel sponsored Vision Network conference, Markell gave a speech and publicly stated he would not hesitate to takeover these schools if it came down to it. Many in the audience were shocked at Markell’s overexertion of executive power, including many out-of-state guests.
This is what you will see if Markell takes over these six schools and turns them into charter schools:
-A precedent will be set in Delaware, and the DOE will be able to use flawed methodology via standardized test scores to “prioritize” any school in the state and turn it into a charter school.
-The DOE is already working on plans to penalize defiant school districts and potentially lead to the creation of Priority School Districts, which could then result in all schools within that district being turned into charter schools. If you don’t think this can happen, look at New Orleans and York, Pennsylvania as cities that have turned into charter school towns.
-More Teach For America, The New Teacher Project, and Relay Graduate School teachers invading Delaware schools like a Nazi Blitzkrieg out of World War II. These are teachers who excel at teaching to the test and are groomed to become future leaders of schools, with minimal training and hands-on experience in classrooms.
-The eventual busting of the unions. The education unions are among the most powerful in the country, and corporate education reformers have found a way to finally break them up. While some see these unions as a major detriment to education, they are the last man standing in the complete slaughter of public school district education.
-Even more Common Core, for not only English and Math, but also Science and Social Studies. This will result in even more standardized testing through PARCC and the Smarter Balanced Consortium. The US DOE used “waivers” to manipulate and blackmail and bribe states into accepting their reforms. If the school districts didn’t comply, they would be labeled as failing due to No Child Left Behind guidelines. Every single one of these waivers benefit the exact blueprint Markell and Rodel CEO Paul Herdman helped to create ten years ago, which has resulted in the current landscape of Delaware education.
-As more lower paid teachers come into schools, it sets up Rodel and Markell to initiate their “personalized learning” agenda through a company called 2Revolutions, which will result in the elimination of hands-on instruction in the classroom and will turn students into complete virtual zombies. This will give the students of the future more screen-time than ever. When they aren’t looking at screens all day at school, they will go home and do homework on the screen. When they aren’t focused on school, they will be on their iPads and Xbox. This “personalized learning” plan has already stated schools would need to do away with extracurricular activities like sports and band, or plays and art clubs.
-Special needs children will suffer the most from this plan, and they will be put at the bottom of the barrel. Arne Duncan has already put things in place that will eliminate the very heart of IDEA law. Do not believe for one second that states want to narrow the proficiency gap between special education students and regular students. They are using this data to make huge decisions with our schools. They will sacrifice a few of their own beloved charter schools to make this point. For every charter school that is closed, there are many more waiting in the wings.
-Minorities and low-income students will continue to be targeted and clumped together in charter schools with their own. Segregation will become the de facto method for all of education.
-Who benefits from all public school students going to charter schools, doing all their work in front of a screen, eliminating the diverse choices students have in schools, and being tested like guinea pigs in high-stakes testing? The companies that have backed all of this and the politicians who have set up the pieces on the board to allow it to happen.
Do parents and the current school districts have a choice anymore with what happens in education? Of course they do. It is not too late. Stopping Markell in Delaware would send a clear message to these companies that would benefit off the backs of our children. The time has come to stop rallying on Facebook on our state “Stop Common Core” pages and actually do something. Every single state in America that is driving these agendas needs to be stopped. Citizens need to start sending Freedom Of Information Act requests to their governors and state DOE. They need to expose these charlatans for what they are. This isn’t something that can be held off. You can’t wait and see. You have to take a stand if you are against this, and it needs to be done NOW.
If the little state of Delaware Governor Jack Markell is not held in check, he will most likely be the next US Secretary of Education and that means more of the same in education, with even more steps being taken to destroy what we have. This nonsense would continue until January 2021 at the earliest, if not longer. By then, all that public school district education has will be gone. It will become a whisper, and hundreds of thousands of educators will disappear. Markell is viewed by many in Delaware as a dictator, and if he is allowed to be set loose as the leader of education in America, all bets are off.
This is the future of education in America. Don’t let anyone fool you. Don’t let them say you are crazy. The people telling you this are already in key positions that are allowing this to happen. Once you enter this matrix world of corporate education reform, the connections these people have and the paths they take become very obvious. They are all pieces of the puzzle that lead to the complete annihilation of education as we know it.
Right now, Delaware needs your help America. We have formed a group called Delaware Parents and Teachers for Public Education. We have started a petition against the priority schools. We need your voice. We don’t just want 1,000 signatures. We want a million. We want to send a powerful message to those that want to dictate rather than collaborate. So please, sign our petition. It is not about Delaware. It’s about freedom, and voice, and our children. It’s about America.
Please go here to sign our petition: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/lets-make-priority-schools-a-real-priority-2
I went over which schools got the Big F for special ed yesterday. Those were schools that managed to have 7% or less of their student population with special education. Today, I will go over the schools that got a poor D! These are schools that have 7.1% to 8.5% of their kids with special ed. Not good no matter how you look at it, but better than an F!
Academy of Dover (Charter): 8.4%
Brandywine Springs School (Elementary): 8.5%
Brookside Elementary School: 8.3%
Castle Hills Elementary School: 7.1%
Concord High School: 7.3%
Delmar Middle School: 7.4%
Downie Elementary School: 7.8%
East Dover Elementary School: 7.1%
Frear Elementary School: 8.4%
Gallaher Elementary School: 7.8%
Hartly Elementary School: 8.1%
Marshall Elementary School: 7.4%
Middletown High School: 8.2%
Mote Elementary School: 7.4%
Oberle Elementary School: 7.6%
Pleasantville Elementary School: 8.5%
Simpson Elementary School: 7.7%
Smith Elementary School: 7.5%
Star Hill Elementary School: 8.4%
Sunnyside Elementary School: 8.5%
Sussex Technical High School: 7.7%
Waters Middle School: 7.7%
West Park Place Elementary School: 7.9%
Only 23 public schools (public, charter and vocational) in Delaware got a D. Not as bad as the F Club. Some of you have a very strong chance of getting into the C club or higher during the 2014-2015 Academic Year. I would make that happen. You are no Charter School of Wilmington, but you need a great deal of work. Don’t forget parents, these are based on the Delaware average for special education in our schools, which is at 13.5%. Some have estimated that as high as 22% of kids in Delaware should be on an IEP due to their exceptionalities. So as a state, we have a long way to go.