Saturday, August 27, 2011

Waiting for Irene....

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Guest Column: House Appropriations Committee Chairman Adolph:

School fund stories misleading

Recently various media outlets have written about school funding and how the state's contribution to PreK-12 education was distributed to Pennsylvania's 500 school districts in the 2011-12 state budget. Many of these articles focus on the poorest 150 school districts and report about the impact state funding will have on their ability to educate students by comparing poorer school districts to wealthier school districts.

Adolph, Corbett should give schools resources to provide quality education

LINDA J. COOK, President, Southeastern Region/Pennsylvania State Education Association
To the Times:
As a teacher, I heard excuses from students who didn't complete their homework. I was reminded of this when I read state Rep. William Adolph's Aug. 22 op-ed, which offers all kinds of excuses about why the General Assembly didn't do the right thing for Pennsylvania's public school students.

Capitolwire: Bill calls for politically appointed charter school commission
8/26/2011 Kevin Zwick, Staff Reporter, Capitolwire
HARRISBURG (Aug. 25) -- A bill aimed at revamping the current charter school law would create a seven-member administrative commission consisting of political appointees, funded through fees from charter schools.
Senate Education Chairman Jeffery Piccola, R-Dauphin, introduced the proposed legislation, Senate Bill 904, to update the state's 1997 charter school law

PSBA testifies at House, Senate hearings as General Assembly gears up for fall session
Aug. 26, 2011
Over the past two weeks, PSBA has testified before both the House and Senate Education Committees at separate hearings on two key issues that are expected to be slated for action in the fall session of the General Assembly – taxpayer-funded tuition vouchers, and expansion of charter schools.

Follow the Students First $6 million voucher money
This is just the direct contributions, does not include money spent on lobbyists, PR firms, brochures, mailings, etc.

New York Times OP-ED CONTRIBUTORS

When Schools Depend on Handouts

By MICHAEL A. REBELL and JESSICA R. WOLFF
Published: August 25, 2011
EARLIER this month, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced that he and five other wealthy individuals had raised $1.5 million to reinstate the January Regents exams, which New York State had canceled because of budget cuts.
Although praiseworthy as a matter of personal philanthropy, the donation by the mayor and the others, whose names were not disclosed, is highly distressing as a matter of public policy. It is disgraceful that essential components of our public education system now depend on the charitable impulses of wealthy citizens.

The Missing Link in School Reform

Stanford Social Innovation Review By Carrie R. Leana Fall 2011
In trying to improve American public schools, educators, policymakers, and philanthropists are++++ overselling the role of the highly skilled individual teacher and undervaluing the benefits that come from teacher collaborations.

Pa. takes a step backward with Gov. Corbett's education cuts

Published: Friday, August 26, 2011, 5:42 AM
Patriot-News Op-Ed  By Michael J. Crossey
If we want to improve the performance of our public schools, we should cut school funding. And we should make really big cuts in our most challenged schools. Really? Does someone really believe this? Sadly, yes. 

Highlights from Arne Duncan's Twitter Town Hall
By Michele McNeil on August 24, 2011 3:33 PM 
During a 30-plus-minute, rapid-fire Q & A between Arne Duncan and moderator John Merrow, we learned that 10 days of testing is too much, merit pay for teachers should be voluntary, and the U.S. Secretary of Education is a Twitter "novice."



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