Wednesday, August 29, 2012

“…those who are uncomfortable with the hijacking of public schools are going to have to organize quickly, find voice, and propose realistic options.”



Middle-class American students who attend well-funded schools rank at the top of the world on international tests. Stephen Krashen, professor emeritus of the Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California August 12, 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

“…those who are uncomfortable with the hijacking of public schools are going to have to organize quickly, find voice, and propose realistic options.”
Commentary: Making sense of what's happening in the School District
by thenotebook on Aug 28 2012 Posted in Blogger commentary
This week's guest commentary about changes in the Philadelphia school landscape is from James M. "Torch" Lytle, a former Philadelphia administrator and Trenton superintendent, now a professor at the University of Pennsylvania's Graduate School of Education. The Notebook invites guest blog posts on current topics in Philadelphia education from its readers. Contact us at notebook@thenotebook.org to make a submission.
As the School District of Philadelphia deals with a leadership transition, budget cuts,  funding shortfalls, declining enrollment, school closings, charter school waiting lists, and the most turbulent period in its history, it’s easy to get focused on the turmoil and lose sight of the big picture.  I am a longtime District administrator and former superintendent in Trenton who has watched with dismay the development of policies, starting in 2001 in the Bush administration, that have been designed not so much to raise standards and improve student achievement, but to promote privatization.

Posted at 07:37 PM ET, 08/28/2012

What GOP platform says on education

Washington Post Answer Sheet Blog By Valerie Strauss
Here’s what the 2012 Republican Party platform calls for regarding education:

Teachers Unions, Federal Spending Slammed at GOP Convention

 Mark Bomster  
Tampa
The Republicans offered up a hurricane of tough talk Tuesday night—including battering President Barack Obama and teachers unions—as they hailed Mitt Romney as their newly nominated candidate for president.

Posted at 05:00 AM ET, 08/29/2012

GOP platform’s contempt for public education

Washington Post Answer Sheet Blog By Valerie Strauss
It was obviously too difficult for the authors of the 2012 Republican Party platform to hide their contempt for public education, because it is evident throughout the section on schooling.
What’s more, the education section is used to promote the party’s cultural values, going on at some length about support for abstinence education and its opposition to using federal funds in “mandatory or universal mental health, psychiatric, or socio-emotional screening program.” The message appears to be that schools should teach kids not to have sex but shouldn’t use federal funds to screen students who may be so mentally ill that they are dangerous in a classroom.
The platform says that school choice is “the most important driving force for renewing our schools,” and proceeds to hail homeschooling, private school vouchers and private higher education.

“At (Harrisburg’s) Cougar Academy, Trostle said, the cost per student to the district is $3,000…..By contrast, the district pays (cyber charter schools) $9,000 per traditionally schooled student, $20,000 per student in special education.”

Harrisburg School District starts cyberschool to save money, lure students back

By CATE MCKISSICK, For The Patriot-News  August 28, 2012, 7:17 PM
In an effort to save money and be competitive, the Harrisburg School District has opened its own online school in an effort to lure former students away from other cyber charter schools and back to the district.  The Harrisburg School District is offering its cyberschool, Cougar Academy, for students in the ninth through 12th grades, in hopes of winning back those students they’ve lost to charter cyberschools.
Harrisburg isn’t alone; the Bethlehem Area and Conemaugh Twp. (Somerset County) school districts have also established cyberschools to bring back students. 

Change could be the buzzword for Class of 2025
TribLive By Bill Vidonic and Bill Zlatos Monday, August 27, 2012
Predictions for the shape of American’s educational system by 2025:
Read more: 
http://triblive.com/news/2410025-74/class-classes-kindergarten-schools-students-elementary-2025-education-north-review#ixzz24vcnk0a7 

Harrisburg Patriot News will print three days of the week and expand 24/7 digital coverage starting in January

Letter to readers from Patriot-News Publisher John Kirkpatrick

Published: Tuesday, August 28, 2012, 10:15 AM     Updated: Tuesday, August 28, 2012, 1:00 PM
 By JOHN KIRKPATRICK, The Patriot-News 
Dear Patriot-News and PennLive readers,
The way we all get our news is changing, and changing quickly. In response, we are about to change in a bold and dramatic way.
You have made it clear to us in our ongoing conversations and in your use of both The Patriot-News and PennLive, that the world today is very different than what we all knew just a few years ago. Our advertisers have done the same. You have also made it clear that you want us to continue to be a leader in providing central Pennsylvania with the news and information you've come to expect from us – whether in print or online.
So, in January we will be changing The Patriot-News print schedule to the three days of the week that our readers and our advertisers value the most. We will be including features and section from other days into the new print schedule.
At the same time, we will be expanding our 24-hour, 7-day-a-week news efforts. Our 24-7 digital focus is aimed at serving the ever-evolving needs of our readers, our advertisers, and this community we care about so much.

If you have received an absentee ballot it must be postmarked by September 10th
Bios of candidates slated for 2013 PSBA offices 8/15/2012
At its May 19 meeting at PSBA Conference Center, the PSBA Nominating Committee interviewed and selected a slate of candidates for officers of the association in 2013.

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.

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