Monday, August 20, 2012

Return on investment: Joe Watkins, Chairman of Students First Voucher PAC that contributed millions to PA political candidates appointed recovery officer for Chester Upland SD



“Only public schools, operated by school districts with elected school boards are open to all children and fully accountable to all taxpayers.”
Baruch Kintisch, Director of Policy Advocacy, Education Law Center, in testimony before the PA House Democratic Policy Committee, July 17, 2012

Daily postings from the Keystone State Education Coalition now reach more than 1600 Pennsylvania education policymakers – school directors, administrators, legislators, legislative and congressional staffers, 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

Return on investment:  Joe Watkins, Chairman of Students First Voucher PAC that contributed millions to PA political candidates appointed recovery officer for Chester Upland SD
PA Department of Education Press Release: 08/17/2012
Dan Hardy at the Philadelphia Inquirer
John Kopp at the Delco Times

2 Pittsburgh-area charter schools to move forward on own

Institutions dissolve contracts with management firms
August 20, 2012 12:09 am
By Eleanor Chute / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Two charter schools have parted ways this summer with management companies that have been part of the schools since their founding.
The Environmental Charter School at Frick Park, which opened in 2008, no longer has a management contract with Imagine Schools, which is based in Arlington, Va.
The PA Distance Learning Charter School, which started in 2004, has ended its contract with White Hat, based in Akron, Ohio.

CUSD finalizes settlement with Pa. Department of Education
Published: Monday, August 20, 2012
Delco Times By JOHN KOPP jkopp@delcotimes.com
The Chester Upland School District finalized its settlement agreement with the Pennsylvania Department of Education Wednesday, ending a litigation process that began in January.
The agreement provided Chester Upland with an additional $9.7 million in funding for the 2012-13 school year, which was included when the General Assembly passed the state budget.
The state also paid the district’s outstanding vendor payments from the previous school year and its unpaid charter payments. Together, those debts total about $20.5 million, bringing Chester Upland’s total benefit to about $31 million, according to information provided by Solicitor Leo Hackett when the settlement figures were first announced last month.

Double-Dips and Double Standards, the Farce that is School 'Competition' in Pennsylvania
Digital Notebook Blog by Evan Brandt SUNDAY, AUGUST 19, 2012
I have to hand it to the newspapers in Pittsburgh.
They are really doing some excellent reporting on the difference between the two kinds of public schools in Pennsylvania -- the kind you and I attended and charter schools.

Spin the wheel, win an education
Reading Eagle by David Mekeel  Originally Published: 8/17/2012
Where is the outrage?
In a sneaky move, Gov. Tom Corbett has managed to push forward one of his top education initiatives. It's one that nearly always draws noise from both those for and against.
But I'm not hearing much grumbling this time around.
Maybe that's because the governor packaged the state's new school voucher program in sheep's clothing.  With the ultra-positive sounding name "Opportunity Scholarship," Pennsylvania's new voucher program is being billed as a way for kids whose schools have failed them to escape to greener pastures.
But it's far from a good answer to the state's educational woes. Instead, it's simply a way to funnel public money into private hands.

A Vampiric Budget
Yinzercation Blog — AUGUST 16, 2012
Debated deep in the chambers of the Capitol Building, and signed by Governor Corbett into law near midnight on June 30th, the 2012-2013 Pennsylvania state budget has emerged into the sunlight over the past six weeks where the details sparkle. And not in a good way.
The implications of this budget – plus the Governor’s associated educational “reform” policies introduced this summer – are now quite clear. They threaten to continue sucking the lifeblood out of public schools. Yet there’s good news for our movement too: turns out our grassroots were planted in a patch of strong garlic and we’ve held some of the worst policies at bay. Here’s where we stand:

Education Voters PA Advocate Summit Sept. 22 Harrisburg

Building Community Leadership for Public Education.
On Saturday, September 22, 2012, Education Voters will be hosting an Advocate Summit to building community leaders for public education.
Saturday, September 22, 2012 Harrisburg, PA 8:30am - 4:30pm
What is it?
The Education Voters Institute of Pennsylvania is hosting a day-long forum to bring together advocates from across the Commonwealth. This summit will be an opportunity for individuals to learn about key issues affecting education policy, develop successful advocacy techniques and strategies to influence public policy and network with other advocates from around the state.
Who should attend?
If you are:
·                                 Someone who would like to learn more about education policy,
·                                 Interested in learning how to get involved in education advocacy,
·                                 Interested in learning new ways to organize locally,
·                                 Interested in learning what other education advocates are doing,
Then you should attend the EVPA Advocate Summit!
How to register?
Registration is easy, just click the link below or go to http://www.EducationVotersPA.org.
The cost of the summit is only $25 and includes continental breakfast and boxed lunch and all training materials.  Space is limited.
To download a flyer, CLICK HERE.

Upcoming PSBA Professional Development Opportunities
To register or to learn more about PSBA professional development programs please visit:  www.psba.org/workshops/

2012 PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference Oct. 16-19, 2012
Registration is Now Open!  Hershey Lodge & Convention Center, Hershey, PA
www.psba.org/workshops/school-leadership-conference/

EPLC’s 2012 Arts and Education Symposium: Save the Date, Thursday, October 11

Education Policy and Leadership Center

Please mark your calendars and plan on joining EPLC, our partners, and guests on October 11 in Harrisburg for a full day of events.  Stay tuned to aei-pa.org for information about our 2nd Arts and Education Symposium.  Scholarships and Act 48 Credit will be available.  Outstanding speakers and panelists from Pennsylvania and beyond will once again come together to address key topics in the arts and arts education and related public policy advocacy initiatives.  This is a networking and learning opportunity not to be missed!

http://www.aei-pa.org/


NSBA Federal Relations Network seeking new members for 2013-14
School directors are invited to advocate for public education at the federal level through the National School Boards Association’s Federal Relations Network. The National School Boards Association is seeking school directors interested in serving on the Federal Relations Network (FRN), its grass roots advocacy program that brings local board members on the front line of pending issues before Congress. If you are a school director and willing to carry the public education message to Washington, D.C., FRN membership is a good place to start. 
Click here for more information.
cho � i e (c! �! erested in serving on the Federal Relations Network (FRN), its grass roots advocacy program that brings local board members on the front line of pending issues before Congress. If you are a school director and willing to carry the public education message to Washington, D.C., FRN membership is a good place to start. 
Click here for more information.


Lawrence A. Feinberg
Keystone State Education Coalition
Follow us on Twitter at @lfeinberg

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