NEA and AFT Spent Millions on the Demagogue Obama and Electoral Work: Is the Education Bailout Dead? “Janet Bass of the American Federation of Teachers says that despite these obstacles, the unions plan to keep up the pressure for passage. “We will fight for it as long as we can,” she says. “It’s not dead.” She’s right that there’s a chance the proposal could be revived next week, but betting money as Congress prepared to leave town for the Memorial Day weekend was that there just aren’t the votes to move it forward.
Drop-Out States Lead Flight From RaTT Shell Game: “About two dozen states are going back to Washington for another shot at billions in education grants under the Race to the Top program, but at least nine others with more than 7 million children are opting out of trying a second time.
For them, a chance at hundreds of millions of dollars wasn’t enough to overcome the opposition of teachers unions, the wariness of state leaders to pass laws to suit the program and fears of giving up too much local control.”
Masquerading as News, Press Attacks Teacher Benefits: “The days of teachers contributing nothing toward health care, however, may be waning. For the first time, teachers in Utica and Grosse Pointe will make monthly payments toward health care under contracts approved this spring. Livonia’s teachers agreed last year to make monthly health care payments and take furlough days. “If we didn’t accept those concessions, there would’ve been a huge cut in the educational programs for our students,” said Kenewell, head of Utica’s teachers union. “And if we protect programs for the students, we protect jobs. They’ve already cut some programs.”
How To Fix Detroit Schools? Get Rid of 2/3 of the Students: “Robert Bobb, Detroit schools emergency financial manager, said the 76,000 student Detroit district can only support 26,000 students unless it makes deep cuts in operating and long-term costs such as retirement and health care for employees.”
Ken Saltman on the “Portfolio Approach” in Urban Schools: “This perspective considers public schools to be comparable to private enterprise, with competition a key element to success. Just as businesses that cannot turn sufficient profit, schools that cannot produce test scores higher than competitors’ must be “allowed” to “go out of business.” The appeal of the portfolio district strategy is that it appears to offer an approach sufficiently radical to address longstanding and intractable problems in public schools”
Secret Regimented Standards for Imperialist War Education Revealed: “Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, and Lily Eskelsen, the vice president of the National Education Association, were also on hand to endorse the standards, with Ms. Weingarten calling the the AFT an “unabashed supporter.”
Ed Mcelroy, the last AFT President to file a report for an entire year (Weingarten files in Dec 2010) reported an income of $390,426.
NEA Hack Lily Eskelsen ($365,738 in 2009) on Regimented National Standards: “We believe that this initiative is a critical first step in our nation’s effort to provide every student with a comprehensive, content-rich and complete education. These standards have the potential to support teachers in achieving NEA’s purpose of preparing students preparing students to ‘thrive in a democratic society and a diverse, changing world as knowledgeable, creative and engaged citizens and lifelong learners.’”
Schools as Huge Markets Where Stealing is Commonplace: “According to the grand jury, about 75 percent of the San Diego district schools that were audited misused ASB funds for curricular and administrative purposes and for the benefit of faculty.”
Bloomberg Moves to Block NYC Teachers’ Wages: “This was not an ideal decision and it certainly does not solve all our budget issues,” Mr. Bloomberg said in a statement, which was released after he notified Michael Mulgrew, the president of the United Federation of Teachers, about his decision. “In our conversation this morning, Michael Mulgrew and I agreed that we would go together to Albany and Washington to press our case to restore more education funding.”
CSU Stanislaus to Pay Twit $75,000 for Babble (no pole dance?): “Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will receive $75,000 to speak at Cal State Stanislaus next month, an event that has become steeped in controversy and brought the small Turlock campus worldwide attention. Much of the scrutiny has centered on the former governor’s speaking fee, which the university has refused to disclose. The fact that Palin has received up to $100,000 for other recent appearances had stoked furious speculation and the kind of cloak-and-dagger intrigue worthy of a novel.”
Walmart Education–Cradle to Grave: “Wal-Mart estimates that about 50 percent of its employees in the United States have a high school diploma or the equivalent but have not earned a college degree. With the average full-time employee being paid $11.75 an hour, it was unclear how many of them will be able to take advantage of the new program. With the work credits and tuition discount, an associate’s degree for a Wal-Mart or Sam’s Club cashier would cost about $11,700 and a bachelor’s degree about $24,000.”
The Secret Whole Language Project in San Ysidro High: “Now high schoolers such as Delgado at the top levels read the Diary of Anne Frank and talk about genocide. The idea was to challenge students sooner with tougher but still accessible readings that also sparked their interest — something that can be vexing with teens whose English is thin. Even finding books that are easy enough for English learners but interesting to teenagers is a challenge.”
Virtual Charter Schools Rule! “Nationally, there are an estimated 200,000 full-time virtual charter school students, said Susan Patrick, chief executive of the International Association for K-12 Online Learning.”
Nice Job, PhD, Now Play Online Poker to Live: “The number of full-time faculty members at universities was around 51% in 2007, down from 78% in 1970, said Jack Schuster, a senior research fellow at Claremont Graduate University. That leaves many doctoral degree candidates stuck with adjunct work, which can pay as little as $2,000 a semester.”
Read the full RF Update here.