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Lessons from the 1918 Flu Pandemic, When Many Schools Closed

During the 1918 Flue Pandemic, “Some cities (in the United States) closed their schools for the duration of the health crisis, as long as 15 weeks.”

Diane Ravitch's blog

I was recently contacted by a journalist who asked me if there was any precedent for the current school closings in response to a health crisis.

My first impulse was to say “no,” based on my knowledge of history, but I started googling before responding.

I googled “school closings” and “1918 flu epidemic” and found this excellent article by Alexandra M. Stern, Marin S. Cetron, and Howard Markel, published in 2009.

https://www.healthaffairs.org/doi/full/10.1377/hlthaff.28.6.w1066

The authors wrote in 2009, in relation to an outbreak of the A/H1N1 influenza of that year:

”Nine decades before our current encounter with a novel strain of influenza virus, the deadly second wave of the 1918–19 influenza pandemic struck the United States. In response, most urban communities closed K–12 public schools for an extended period of time, in some locations for as long as fifteen weeks. Typically, the order to close schools came late in the epidemic…

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Posted by on March 21, 2020 in Uncategorized

 

NEPC: There Is No “Science of Reading”

Diane Ravitch's blog

The National Education Policy Center issued a statement today about teaching reading.

The bottom line: There is no “science of reading.”

It’s time for the media and political distortions to end, and for the literacy community and policymakers to fully support the literacy needs of all children.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Joint Statement Regarding
“Science of Reading” Advocacy

KEY TAKEAWAY:

It’s time for the media and political distortions to end, and for the literacy community and policymakers to fully support the literacy needs of all children.

CONTACT:
William J. Mathis:
(802) 383-0058
wmathis@sover.net

Kevin Kumashiro:
(202) 468-9489
kevin@kevinkumashiro.com
TwitterEmail Address

BOULDER, CO (March 19, 2020) – The National Education Policy Center and the Education Deans for Justice and Equity (EDJE) today jointly released a Policy Statement on the “Science of Reading.”

For the past few years, a wave of media has reignited the unproductive Reading Wars, which frame early-literacy teaching…

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Posted by on March 19, 2020 in Uncategorized

 

Wendy Lecker, Civil Rights Lawyer, Reviews SLAYING GOLIATH

Diane Ravitch's blog

Wendy Lecker is a civil rights lawyer for the Education Law Center who writes regularly for the Hearst Connecticut Media Group and the Stamford (CT) Advocate.

https://www.stamfordadvocate.com/news/article/Wendy-Lecker-A-fighter-against-bad-education-15111892.php

She writes:

Diane Ravitch is rare in American public policy — a public figure who very publicly admitted that the positions she once championed were wrong. Dr. Ravitch is a historian of education and former assistant secretary of education under President George H.W. Bush — and was once a vocal champion of two pillars of education “reform”: school choice and standardized testing. In 2010, she published a book, “The Death and Life of the Great American School System,” in which she meticulously critiqued these policies, and rued her role in pushing them.

Since then, Dr. Ravitch has tirelessly fought ill-conceived and harmful education policies and promotes a vision of public education that she believes is better for children and truer to our democratic…

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Posted by on March 9, 2020 in Uncategorized

 

Los Angeles: Teachers v. Billionaires

Beware of the Billionaires out to abuse the children of LA Unified.

Diane Ravitch's blog

MEDIA ADVISORY
March 2, 2020
Contact: Anna Bakalis, 213-305-9654

Los Angeles — The stakes are high in the LAUSD School board race to elect Patricia Castellanos in District 7, Scott Schmerelson in District 3, Jackie Goldberg in District 5 and George McKenna in District 1. As of Monday morning, the California Charter Schools Association PAC and billionaires like Bill Bloomfield, who sits on the CCSA PAC board, have funneled more than $6.2 million into the race against these candidates, making it the most expensive primary school board race in US history. They are spending $1 million every other day since last week.

“What our kids don’t need are billionaires spending $20,000 an hour every day to buy our school board election. Imagine if the millions they are spending against public education were redirected into our schools?” said UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl. “Our school libraries could be open five days a…

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Posted by on March 2, 2020 in Uncategorized

 

Rep. Rosa DeLauro to Secretary DeVos: No Privatization!

Betsy DeVos and the Trump Administration are clearly seeking to privatize public education so a few already wealthy individuals in the private sector will be able to increase their fortunes at the expense of OUR children.

Diane Ravitch's blog

The House Subcommittee on Appropriations for Labor, Health, Human Services and Education opened hearings this morning, with Secretary DeVos as witness to testify about the Trump administration’s budget proposal. She. Wants to combine the funding for 29 programs and send the money to states as a block grant, to be used as they wish, she wants deep cuts in overall spending but a new $5 billion federal voucher program, which she calls “education freedom scholarships.” Charter school advocates were stunned to learn that the federal Charter Schools Program was one of the 29 that would disappear into a block grant.

Rep. Rosa DeLauro opened the hearing with this statement.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 27, 2020

CONTACT:

Will Serio: 202-225-3661

Chairwoman DeLauro Opening Remarks for House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Hearing with Secretary DeVos on the President’s Fiscal Year 2021 Budget Request

(As prepared for…

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Posted by on February 27, 2020 in Uncategorized

 

Texas: Poll Shows Respect for Teachers, Support for More Funding, Concern about Testing

Diane Ravitch's blog

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:

Tessa Benavides

tbenavides@ryht.org

(210) 445-3965

First-of-its-kind Poll Reveals Texans Trust Teachers, and Have Concerns About School Testing and Funding

AUSTIN, TX (February 20, 2020) The Raise Your Hand Texas Foundation has released a first-of-its kind statewide poll about Texans’ attitudes toward public education. Notable findings include Texans appreciate teachers, but have concerns about testing and the lack of funding for schools. The poll found that 77 percent of Texans express trust and confidence in their teachers, much higher than the 61 percent of Americans polled on the same question.

The poll was released during a press conference this morning. There is footage from today’s press conference available in both English and Spanish for any future use:https://www.raiseyourhandtexas.org/2020-poll-resources/.

Names of those participating in the press conference:

  • English
    • Dr. Shari Albright, President, Raise Your Hand Texas
    • Gary Langer, President, Langer Research Associates
  • Spanish
    • Max Rombardo, Research Associate, Raise…

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Posted by on February 24, 2020 in Uncategorized

 

“Slaying Goliath” by Diane Ravitch

GFBrandenburg's Blog

I wish I could write half as well as, or as much as, Diane Ravitch manages to do, every single day. I also admire her dedication to fighting the billionaires who have been dictating education policy in the USA for quite some time.

If you are reading this post, you are no doubt aware that only ten years ago, Ravitch did a 180-degree turn on major education issues, admitted she had been wrong on a number of points, and became one of the major forces fighting against the disruptive education-privatization agenda of the billionaires.

Since that time, she has been documenting on her blog, several times a day, nearly every day, the utter failures of the extremely wealthy amateurs who have been claiming to ‘reform’ education, but who have instead merely been disrupting it and failing to achieve any of the goals that they confidently predicted would be won, even…

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Posted by on February 21, 2020 in Uncategorized