Thursday, December 15, 2011

PA State House rejects all of Gov. Corbett's school reform package

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Limited voucher plan unable to garner enough support for a floor vote.

Expansion of charters and EITC then voted down 105-90.

State House rejects school-voucher proposal

Published: Wednesday, December 14, 2011, 11:39 PM
Gov. Tom Corbett wanted a school voucher program in his Christmas stocking this year, but the legislators decided against giving it to him.
On Wednesday night, the House, following a lengthy debate, voted 105-90 to reject a scaled-back education-reform plan that would expand the state’s Education Improvement Tax Credit program and overhaul the state’s charter school law.

House GOP unveils late-night surprise charter-school reform plan

Pittsburgh Tribune review By Associated Press, Thursday, December 15, 2011
HARRISBURG -- House Republicans unveiled a late-night surprise charter-school reform plan on the last day this year that both houses of the Legislature are in session.
Read more: House GOP unveils late-night surprise charter-school reform plan - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

"We put together several variations and the votes just weren't there [on either side of the aisle]," House GOP spokesman Steve Miskin said tonight

No Vouchers For You: House Doing Charters, EITC Tonight.

Morning call Capitol Ideas Blog By John Micek December 14, 2011
Looks Like Gov. Corbett ...
... can bid a teary adieu to his goal of a school voucher for every kid this Christmas.

How your legislator voted on SB560 (Killion) that would have expanded charters and the EITC program:

Please call your legislator and express either your gratitude or displeasure with his/her vote. Let them know that we ARE paying attention to how they do vote. Contact information for legislators:

Delco's Chester Upland School District may not be able to meet payroll by next month
By Dan Hardy, Inquirer Staff Writer Posted: Thu, Dec. 15, 2011, 3:01 AM
The Chester Upland School District, hammered by state budget cuts and the loss of students to charter schools, is running out of money and may not be able to meet its payroll as early as next month.  That's despite starting the school year with 35 percent of the teachers and half of the support staff it had in June.
Part of the district's long-term financial problems come from its losing many children to the charters. More than half its students in kindergarten to eighth grade now attend them.
Chester Upland is paying the charter schools an estimated $39.4 million this year for educating its students; that's about 40 percent of the budget. The money is paid directly to the schools by the state, drawing on allocations to the district, Avery said.

Charter school should reveal deal, court says
February 17, 2006|By Dan Hardy INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The management contract between the Chester Community Charter School and a for-profit charter-management company headed by Main Line lawyer and businessman Vahan H. Gureghian should be made public, Commonwealth Court has ruled.

Palm Beach Florida Daily News

Posted: 4:04 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 3, 2011

Owners on the record — There’s finally word about who bought 1071 N. Ocean Blvd. and the lot next door for a combined $28.9 million — the year’s second-largest Palm Beach residential purchase by a single buyer.

Follow the Money: Contributions by Vahan Gureghian 1/1/07 - 5/31/11

Dec. 15, 2011 4:11 AM ET
Report: half of schools fail to meet federal AYP targets
DORIE TURNER, AP Education Writer
 (AP) — Nearly half of America's public schools didn't meet federal achievement standards this year, marking the largest failure rate since the much-criticized No Child Left Behind Law took effect a decade ago, according to a national report released Thursday.
The Center on Education Policy report shows more than 43,000 schools — or 48 percent — did not make "adequate yearly progress" this year. The failure rates range from a low of 11 percent in Wisconsin to a high of 89 percent in Florida.

Florida Charter Schools Failing Disabled Students by JOHN O'CONNOR and SARAH GONZALEZ, December 14, 2011

Listen to the Story Morning Edition [5 min 26 sec]

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December 14, 2011
Tres Whitlock is stuck in a public school where he feels ignored. He wants out.
The 17-year-old would-be video game designer researched his options online and found his perfect match – Pivot Charter School.
"It's computer-based and I think I will do better," he says.
But when Whitlock tried to enroll in the school, he found a series of barriers in his way.

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