Post Gazette By Anne Cloonan November 18, 2016 12:00 AM
WHYY Newsworks DAVE DAVIES OFF MIC A BLOG BY DAVE DAVIES NOVEMBER 17, 2016
Will Donald Trump's success in Pennsylvania inspire copy-cat campaigns for governor? Looks like we already have one. If you haven't heard of state Sen. Scott Wagner yet, trust me, you will. He's a wealthy waste-management entrepreneur who beat the Republican establishment to get into office, and he's already said he'll run for governor in 2018. Wagner was for years a conservative outsider in York County, criticizing mainstream Republicans as soft on conservative principles and beholden to special interests. He'd often finance the campaigns of conservative challengers to GOP incumbents, not the kind of thing that endears you to party leaders. Two years ago, Wagner ran against the party-backed candidate in a special election and won his seat with write-in votes, a stunning achievement not unlike Trump beating a Republican presidential field stocked with establishment candidates. Wagner's win put the outsider on the inside in Harrisburg, and party leaders soon learned he wouldn't be a quiet member of the Senate caucus.
The Erie School Board made a big decision and got closer to making another on Wednesday night. The board unanimously approved a resolution that prohibits the closing of any of the Erie School District's four high schools in the 2017-18 academic year. The board also received more information from Superintendent Jay Badams on how much additional state aid the district will request in its state-mandated financial recovery plan, which Badams wants to submit to the state Department of Education as early as Dec. 1. At a public session after Wednesday night's board meeting, Badams said the district would need at least $38 million more from the state annually, starting in 2017-18, for the district to regain full financial stability and provide its 11,500 students the same type of educational resources that students in Erie County's more affluent school districts receive. Badams said his administration will work down from the $38 million figure to decide how much to request from the state. He emphasized the final figure will not be $38 million. He said he cited that number to illustrate what the district sees as the severity of its underfunding at the state level.
If you are tired of reading about Donald Trump, take a look a this. Peter Greene, a veteran teacher of English in a small town in Pennsylvania, wrote on his lively Curmudgucation blog that he has found himself in conversations about standardized testing that go something like this: people who like standardized testing defend it to the max while he counters that the number of standardized tests necessary for students to take is zero. For taking that position he writes, he has been called a “union shill,” lectured that data from these tests are the life blood of education, and asked to be explain what the alternative to standardized testing is. Here in this post, he explains his thinking. This is a shortened version of the original, which you can find here.
Listen: Kara Newhouse talks with civil engineer Samy Leisenring for Women in STEM podcast
(368 Tioga Ave, Kingston, PA 18704)
Tuesday, December 6, 2016 @ 6:00 pm: Chester County IU 24
(455 Boot Road, Downingtown, PA 19335)
Join us for a public forum featuring state, city and civic leaders sponsored by Philadelphia Media Network, the Philadelphia Public School Notebook and Drexel University's School of Education.
Creese Student Center 3210 Chestnut St. Philadelphia, PA 19104
It's been 15 years since the state took control of Philadelphia's schools and created the School Reform Commission. Since then, the SRC has been a polarizing presence in the city.
With the recent resignation of two members of the commission and the term of a third expiring soon, the future of the SRC and the issue of school governance is once again at the forefront of the civic dialogue. Is the SRC the only model to consider? Should Philadelphia create an elected school board, or should the governing body be controlled by the Mayor? Are there models in other cities that could help us rethink our own school governance? The Philadelphia Public School Notebook, Philadelphia Media Network -- owner of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News and philly.com, and Drexel University's School of Education are hosting a public forum on this critical issue.
RSVP - Admission is free, but you must register in advance. Register now, and find out more about the panelists and other details at our registration page. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/who-should-run-philadelphias-schools-tickets-28926705555
Join school directors around the country at the conference designed to give you the tools to advocate successfully on behalf of public education.
- NSBA will help you develop a winning advocacy strategy to help you in Washington, D.C. and at home.
- Attend timely and topical breakout sessions lead by NSBA’s knowledgeable staff and outside experts.
- Expand your advocacy network by swapping best practices, challenges, and successes with other school board members from across the country.
Plan to join public education leaders for networking and learning at the 2017 NSBA Annual Conference, March 25-27 in Denver, CO. General registration is now open at https://www.nsba.org/conference/registration. A conference schedule, including pre-conference workshops, is available on the NSBA website.