Texas: The Charter Waiting List is a Myth

Diane Ravitch's blog

Brian T. Woods, a district superintendent in Texas, wrote an article exposing the myth of charter schools’ waiting lists.

Charters claim they must expand because 100,000 students are on waiting lists. Woods says that recent hearings before the state senate education committee demonstrated the falsity of that claim, based on data presented by the Texas Education Agency.

Some charters have waiting lusts, but most don’t. Charters actually have at least 108,000 vacant seats in the state. There are 250,000 charter students in the state, which is 5% of public school enrollment. About 30% of charter seats are empty. Why open more charters?

Woods also pointed out:

“The other revelation was a new study on the funding of charter schools versus that of independent school districts. A well-respected educational consulting group released a report examining the various funding structures. Among its findings, according to a Texas Association of School Boards report…

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Posted by on February 8, 2016 in Uncategorized


Saving CPS from CPS: Real Shared Sacrifice

Saving CPS from CPS: Real Shared Sacrifice

What is happening to the public school in Chicago is not just happening there. It is happening all over the United States in other cities and states from, for instance, Los Angeles, to New Orleans, New York, New Jersey, and Massachusetts to Florida.

Troy LaRaviere's blog

During my career as a Chicago Public School principal, I have often been at odds with the Chicago Teachers Union. I have been the target of multiple grievances filed by CTU against me when I have disciplined or dismissed a teacher. All were signed by Karen Lewis, and I fought most of them vigorously. Given that history, you might think it odd that I support several CTU stances.  However, I believe in a simple truth: When you’re wrong, you’re wrong; and when you’re right, you’re right. Unfortunately, our mayor and his appointed board of education have been so irresponsible and so reckless, that I find myself squarely in agreement with the CTU on several school issues.

When they’re right, they’re right.

Furthermore, during the latest contract negotiations, I have come to the conclusion that CTU’s refusal to accept the Board’s last contract offer gives the residents of Chicago the best chance we have…

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Posted by on February 7, 2016 in Uncategorized


Why Aren’t Public Schools Too Big To Fail?



There’s a new fad sweeping the nation.

It’s called “Educational Accountability.” Here’s how it works.

If your neighborhood school can’t afford to pay its bills, just close it.

That’s right. Don’t help. Don’t look for ways to save money. Don’t look for new revenue. Just lock the doors.

It’s fun! And everyone in the federal and state government is doing it!
It’s the saggy pants of United States education policy. It’s the virtual pet of pedagogical economics. It’s the cinnamon challenge of learning-centered legislating.

Sorry, poor urban folks. We’re closing your kids’ school. What? Your little tots are entitled to an education!? Fine! Take them to some fly-by-night charter or else they can get stuffed into a larger class at a traditional school miles away. It’s really none of my business.

Meanwhile, as government functionaries pat themselves on the back and give high fives all around, academic

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Posted by on February 6, 2016 in Uncategorized


Ten Examples that help define American Exceptionalism

Lloyd Lofthouse

I’ve heard these two words, American Exceptionalism, repeated for most of my life, and it is often used to support the claim that the United States is God’s country. In its classic forms, Ian Tyrrell says, “American exceptionalism refers to the special character of the United States as a uniquely free nation based on democratic ideals and personal liberty.”

What does American Exceptionalism mean when we take into account the following facts?

  1. The United States has the largest prison population in the World. China, with almost five times the people, is ranked number two with 74% of the U.S. prison population. Russia is in third place with 29%. One industry where the U.S. is the number one producer in the world, according to Family, is pornography and 89% of the world’s pornography web pages are hosted in the United States. Germany is in second place with four percent…

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Posted by on February 5, 2016 in Uncategorized


Confronting “Bad Journalism” in an Era of “Bad Teachers”

I think that Stephen Sawchuk is a fool and/or a fraud.

the becoming radical

A couple of weeks ago, I posted Addressing Teacher Quality Post-NCLB in order to examine the impact of ESSA on the growing “bad teachers” narrative found in political and media commentary on the state of education in the U.S.

My speculations have now been given credence, notably Stephen Sawchuk’s 50 Years of Research Show Good Teaching Matters. Now What? at his Teacher’s Beat blog for Education Week.

Sawchuk’s post confirmed for me that the “bad teachers” drumbeat will continue so I posted a comment, one that expressed my frustration and linked to my post above:

Please let’s stop the bad journalism on teacher quality.

Please let’s stop treating Education Next as a credible publication.

First, we must note that the impact of teacher quality is dwarfed by out-of-school factors (

“But in the big picture, roughly 60 percent of achievement outcomes is explained by student and family background…

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Posted by on February 5, 2016 in Uncategorized


Will the U.S. Cultural Revolution Rival Mao’s in Suffering and Loss?

Lloyd Lofthouse

Revolution Rival Mao’s in Suffering and Loss?The only difference between the Cultural Revolution in the United States and Mao’s in China (1949 – 1976) is that this unique American Revolution is from the top down instead of the bottom up. In China the majority of the people supported the Chinese Communist Party against the Nationalist Party in a Civil War that raged for decades (1927 – 1950).

But in the United States, the revolution is being led by the wealthiest 0.1% of Americans: for instance, Bill Gates, two of the four Koch brothers, the Walton Walmart family, Rupert Murdock, Wall Street, Corporate America, Hedge Funds, recently Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, who was recruited into the Gates Cabal, and a few other poorer billionaires, for instance Eli Broad in California, a billionaire who made his money in real estate and who is currently funding a campaign to take half the children…

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Posted by on February 3, 2016 in Uncategorized


The Shocking 50 State Report Card on Support for Public Education in the U.S.

State Grades from NPE Report Card of US  public education


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