Monday, June 18, 2012

Common Sense Vs. Common Core: How to Minimize the Damages of the Common Core


Daily postings from the Keystone State Education Coalition now reach more than 1500 Pennsylvania education policymakers – school directors, administrators, legislators, members of the press and a broad array of education advocacy organizations via emails, website, Facebook and Twitter.

These daily emails are archived at http://keystonestateeducationcoalition.org
Follow us on Twitter at @lfeinberg

 

Big test for Corbett looms in election, tax credit
Published: Sunday, June 17, 2012
Delco Times By Marc Levy Associated Press
HARRISBURG (AP) — It's budget season again for Gov. Tom Corbett, and that means the same thing as last year: His approval rating has plummeted as Pennsylvania's no-new-taxes chief executive preaches austerity for public schools and social services while prescribing tax cuts and tax breaks for businesses.

 

Here’s more than 800 examples of “the media’s attacks”: Media’s attacks

Schools need to shift educational priorities

Published: Sunday, June 17, 2012, 1:05 AM
Patriot News Letters to the Editor by Tim Eller, Press Secretary PA DOE
Anne McGraw Reeves’ June 10 commentary, “School budget cuts today will haunt us tomorrow,” is an attempt to convince readers that public education in Pennsylvania will come to a halt. Let’s face it, the media’s attacks on the governor’s budget are nothing more than a call for higher taxes. Facts seem to be ignored when the argument is made that more money is needed. 

Fact: In the 2010-11 school year — state, federal and local taxes combined — Pennsylvanians invested more than $26.5 billion into pre-K-12 education — an increase of $6 billion since 2004-05. 

Fact: Since 2004-05, the number of public school students dropped nearly 63,000, while the number of public school professionals increased by 9,500. 

Fact: In 2004-05, taxpayers contributed $228 million to the Public School Employees’ Retirement System. In 2012-13, this will jump more than 300 percent to $916 million. 

Fact: In 2004-05, salaries and benefits paid by public schools totaled $12.8 billion. This increased 30 percent to $16.7 billion in 2010-11. 

Fact: Gov. Corbett’s first two budgets will invest an additional $828 million in state support of public schools. It’s not that more money is needed. The public education system needs to refocus its efforts to ensure that students remain the No. 1 priority.

TIM ELLER
Press Secretary, PA Department of Education, Harrisburg

 

Public schools try to lure Pa. cyber students back

June 17, 2012 12:18 am

By Sara K. Satullo / The (Easton) Express-Times

EASTON, Pa. -- There's a battle being waged for Pennsylvania's schoolchildren.

Traditional public schools are on the offensive trying to lure back students from cyber and charter schools with their own cyber academics. Public school officials tout better standardized test scores and diplomas from known schools.

Superintendents argue they're grappling with tight budgets, cutting programs and laying off teachers. Yet, they're funneling tax dollars to growing home-based cyber schools that aren't meeting state standards but can afford to offer things districts cannot -- like foreign languages in elementary school.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/news/education/public-schools-try-to-lure-pa-cyber-students-back-640733/#ixzz1y8fOtfzU

 

Michelle Rhee: Vouchers can level playing field

Published: Saturday, June 16, 2012, 11:00 AM
By Patriot-News Op-Ed 
BY MICHELLE RHEE
There are two things that I think could happen among the big business community in Pennsylvania that would potentially change the education game. 
The first is a simple one: Advocate for the policies that you want to be in place in your own life.

http://www.pennlive.com/editorials/index.ssf/2012/06/vouchers_can_level_playing_fie.html

 

Common Sense Vs. Common Core: How to Minimize the Damages of the Common Core

Yong Zhao’s Blog 17 JUNE 2012 

Yong Zhao is currently Presidential Chair and Associate Dean for Global Education, College of Education at the University of Oregon, where he is a full professor in the Department of Educational Measurement, Policy and Leadership(EMPL). He is a fellow of the International Academy for Education.

The wonder drug has been invented, manufactured, packaged, and shipped. Doctors and nurses are being trained to administer the drug properly. Companies and consultants are offering products and services to help with the proper administering of this wonder drug. A national effort is underway to develop tools to monitor the improvement of the patients. The media are flooded with enthusiastic endorsement and euphoric predictions.

This cure-all wonder drug is the Common Core, short for the Common Core State Standards Initiative. Cooked up by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, this magic potion promises to cure America’s education ills, according to its Mission Statement:

http://zhaolearning.com/2012/06/17/common-sense-vs-common-core-how-to-minimize-the-damages-of-the-common-core/

 

Charter School Reform:
Is your State Rep. on the cosponsor list for HB 2364? If not, why not?
If they tell you that we should make it easier to authorize charters or that they are already accountable enough have them read this:

PA Charter Schools: $4 billion taxpayer dollars with no real oversight

More details on HB 2364 from PSBA:

http://www.psba.org/news-publications/headlines/details.asp?id=3469

 

Education Voters PA ‏@EdVotersPA
Please take 2 minutes to send an email to your state reps; ask them to restore public ed funding:

Diane Ravitch on PBS Newshour June 5th, 2012

STATEWIDE PRESS COVERAGE OF SCHOOL DISTRICT BUDGETS
Here are more than 800 articles since January detailing budget cuts, program cuts, staffing cuts and tax increases being discussed by local school districts
The PA House Democratic Caucus has been tracking daily press coverage on school district budgets statewide:

June 29 is deadline to submit proposals for PSBA’s 2013 Legislative Platform
Your school board is invited to submit proposals for consideration for PSBA’s 2013 Legislative Platform. The association is accepting proposals now until Friday, June 29, 2012.  Guidelines for platform submissions are posted on PSBA’s Web site.  The PSBA Platform Committee will review proposals and rationale submitted for the platform on Aug. 11. The recommendations of the committee will be brought before the Legislative Policy Council for a final vote on Oct. 18.

PSBA accepting nominations for the Timothy M. Allwein Advocacy Award
Last year, PSBA created a new award to honor the memory of its long-term chief lobbyist, who died unexpectedly. The Timothy M. Allwein Advocacy Award may be presented annually to the individual school director or entire school board to recognize outstanding leadership in legislative advocacy efforts on behalf of public education and students that are consistent with the positions in PSBA's Legislative Platform. The nomination process is now open and applications will be accepted until June 22, 2012. The award will be presented during the PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference in October. For more information and criteria details, see the Allwein Advocacy Award page. To obtain an application form, see the Allwein Advocacy Award Nomination Form. Completed forms should be returned no later than June 22 to: Pennsylvania School Boards Association, Advocacy Award Selection Committee, PO Box 2042, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055-0790.

Absentee ballot procedures for election of PSBA officers
PSBA website 6/1/2012
All school directors and school board secretaries who are eligible to vote and who do not plan to attend the association's annual business meeting during the 2012 PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference in Hershey, Oct. 16-19, may request an absentee ballot for election purposes.
The absentee ballot must be requested from the PSBA executive director in accordance with the PSBA Bylaws provisions (see PSBA Bylaws, Article IV, Section 4, J-Q.). Specify the name and mailing address of each individual for whom a ballot is requested.
Requests must be in writing, e-mailed or mailed first class and postmarked or marked received at PSBA Headquarters no later than Aug. 15. Mail to Executive Director, P.O. Box 2042, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055 or e-mail administrativerequests@psba.org.

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