Sunday, May 30, 2010

Pedro Noguera Critiques Obama Administration Approach to Ed Reform

NYU's Pedro Noguera, one of the nation's foremost advocates for equity in the schooling for poor and minority youth, writes this week's cover editorial in the Nation magazine and delivers one of the most articulate critiques of the Obama Administration's approach to reform. After the Obama administration was elected on the need for change away from the failed NCLB policy, Noguera maintains, Obama's education Department set to work continuing that failed approach, exhibiting a profound lack of understanding of what was wrong with NCLB. The Obama administration has no vision of its own, says Noguera, serving up instead a hodge podge of quick fix programs that resemble George W Bush's philosophy of punishment, blame, and narrow test driven accountability. The Nation's education edition also features pieces by Linda Darling-Hammond and Diane Ravitch. Its worth picking up at your newstand and is probably worth the cost of a subscription its so good. Click here to read.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Valarie Strauss Again Sets the Record Straight on Charters

In responding to the puff piece on charters and edu-entrepreneurs in the New York Times magazine today, Valarie Strauss pointed out that Steven Brill got his facts wrong on charters and a number of other things. The Times piece hailed the Obama administration, leaders like Michelle Rhee, and edu-entrepreneurs like John Schneur for standing up to the evil teachers' unions. But to make his case, Brill distorted what tenure means for public school teachers, glossed over the fact that at least in New York and Chicago, mayoral control has brought little in the way of improved NAEP scores, and can not be counted a success based on the data. The NY Times piece faithfully adhered to the myth-making narrative that consistently ignores the facts on the ground and the research. There are far too few Valarie Strauss' to hold the myth makers to account.

Monday, May 17, 2010

WTU Contract Funded, according to Gandhi. Now goes to members for a vote

According to a Washington Post story by Bill Turque last week Fenty and Rhee announced that they had received Natwar Gandhi's blessing and had come up with the funds to pay for what they previously negotiated with the WTU. The tradeoff will be other cuts in the system.