"A child's learning is the funtion more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Invitations and Subpoenas for Reading First Mafia

After five years of unprecedented corruption and after reading instruction in this country has been set back by a hundred years, and after millions of children have been damaged by instruction that minimizes understanding, the chickens may finally be coming home to roost.

It is interesting to note that the kingpins and queenpin, Lyon and Carnine and LaMontagne-Spellings, are missing from the list.

From the press release by the House Committee on Education and Labor:

WASHINGTON, DC -- U.S. Rep George Miller (D-CA), the chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee, today confirmed that the following individuals have voluntarily agreed to testify about the implementation of the Reading First program at the committee's investigative hearing into the mismanagement and conflicts of interest in the program on Friday, April 20:

  • John P. ("Jack") Higgins, Jr., Inspector General, U.S. Department of Education
  • Christopher Doherty, former Program Director for Reading First, U.S. Department of Education
  • Dr. Roland H. Good, Associate Professor, University of Oregon
  • Dr. Edward Kame?enui, Department of Education Commissioner of the National Center for Special Education Research, U.S. Department of Education

In addition, Miller announced that the committee today served a congressional subpoena to Dr. Deborah C. Simmons, Professor of Special Education at Texas A&M University. Counsel representing Dr. Simmons raised genuine concerns about whether his client would appear voluntarily when he failed to return several calls from committee staff last week seeking confirmation that Dr. Simmons would accept the invitation to testify. After all other invitees affirmed their commitment to appear before the full Committee on April 20, counsel for Dr. Simmons responded by requesting additional hearing dates that did not conflict with his schedule. As provided for in the Committee Rules, Miller has the power to authorize and issue subpoenas. The subpoena was issued to ensure that the committee is able to gather thorough information from all key witnesses at the investigative hearing ? a part of an ongoing investigation that committee staff is conducting into the implementation of the program.

The Reading First program was created in 2002 as part of the No Child Left Behind Act to improve reading instruction from kindergarten through third grade. The U.S. Department of Education provides formula grants to states with approved applications and then states award sub-grants competitively within the state.



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