Monday, October 29, 2018
The case against intensive phonics
Saturday, October 27, 2018
Clueless Crone, Betsy DeVos, Hires Consultant to Study Morale at ED
And remember, we're talking about worse than life under Arne Duncan! In fact, the positive vibe has dropped from 65% to 43%, which is not too far off from reflecting the approval of Obama (58%) and Trump (42%).
Here's some of the reasons that ED folks are bummed, with links:
A whole lot of the people who work in the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education are there because of their commitment to effective public schools. In contrast, DeVos, who came to office with no experience with public schools — as a student, parent, teacher, or administrator — has shown hostility to public schools and repeatedly demonstrated her lack of understanding of education policy issues.DeVos, whose family wealth makes her a billionaire, has held major financial stakes in for-profit education. While seeking to revive the fortunes of predatory for-profit colleges, DeVos has snidely denigrated students and allowed her Department, which she has staffed at senior levels with former for-profit college executives, to impugn students’ integrity.While DeVos spends much of her time at her luxury homes in Florida and Michigan, the Department is moving to sharply curtail teleworking by career employees. The Secretary has taken a hard-line approach to the employees’ union, issuing a unilateral collective bargaining agreement that stripped workers of numerous benefits and protections — a move the Federal Labor Relations Authority said appeared to be unlawful.In addition, under DeVos, the Department, like the entire Trump administration, is trashing civil rights protections, especially for LGBTQ people. The DeVos Department has also sharply weakened protections for victims of campus sexual assault.Why is morale low at the DeVos Department? Come on.
Wednesday, October 24, 2018
Marshall Tuck’s racist dog whistle
“Blowing the racist dog whistle in politics is shameful. This disgraceful practice against black candidates unfortunately has a long and shameful history. That this would happen in California in 2018 is deeply disturbing. It appears you have chosen to follow President Trump’s playbook of using lies and fake news to smear prominent leaders of color.” — California Hawaii NAACP letter admonishing Marshall Tuck’s racism
The following is adapted from commentary here
The NAACP’s letter rightfully calls Marshall Tuck and his corporate backers out for their “[b]lowing the racist dog whistle in politics.” For business banker Tuck and the market-share obsessed charter school industry to accuse others of “not serving minorities” is really quite astonishing.
We must bear in mind that this is the same Tuck whose policies, much like those of his contemporary counterparts Tom Horne and John Huppenthal of Arizona, caused irreparable harm to students of color. Tuck closed down popular, research proven, Ethnic Studies programs. For example, Tuck completely eliminated Ethnic Sudies at (PLAS) Santee High School. Tuck also restricted and shuttered well regarded and research proven Heritage Language Programs and Dual Language Immersion programs. These language program closures and restrictions were so egregious, and such a violation of students’ civil rights, that the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Public Counsel Law Center jointly filed a Uniform Complaint Cause of Action against Tuck on their behalf.
It took years of protracted court battles to defeat Horne and Huppenthal’s attacks on students of color. We can stop Tuck from carrying out that same agenda by simply electing Tony Thurmond. Californians have an opportunity to show Tuck and his right-wing backers that there’s no room for bigotry and ethnocentrism in our public institutions.
See also: Tuck’s Ethnocentrism Contradicts Californian Values
Monday, October 15, 2018
The Human Role in the Internet of Things
Privatizing Schools: Question 2
Monday, October 08, 2018
Killing Terrorists to Avoid Another 9-11?
Now if we had prior knowledge of an even more devastating plan to wreak havoc worldwide, this time a plan to kill millions while making large parts the planet uninhabitable, would we be justified in locating and neutralizing those who are planning and enabling such horrendous acts?
The fact is that we do have prior knowledge of such a plan, and it is being directed by both national and international groups to destroy large swaths of life on Earth, while carrying out a well-funded political and media campaign to deny, derail, and to discredit any effort to undermine the flagrant and massive operation of capitalist terrorism. This campaign is being directed by fossil fuel interests in corporate boardrooms and secure corporate/political retreat locations around the globe.
The question remains how to mobilize forces and to effect operations that are required for our children and grandchildren to have lives, and for the planet to remain like Earth rather than Venus.
. . . .The IPCC report makes it clear that the time for talking is over — this is literally a matter of life and death. To give just one example, Yale scientists predict that the difference between a 1.5 degree and 2 degree rise in global temperatures could cut corn yields in parts of Africa by half. . . .