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Author Archives: Lloyd Lofthouse

About Lloyd Lofthouse

Lloyd Lofthouse earned a BA in journalism after fighting in Vietnam as a U. S. Marine. He then taught English and journalism in the public schools by day (for thirty years) and for a time worked as a maitre d' in a multimillion-dollar nightclub by night. Later, he earned a MFA in writing. He lives near San Francisco.

Edujournalism and Eduresearch Too Often Lack Merit

Discover the alleged crap-science and misleading claims of teacher merit pay.

radical eyes for equity

What do Marta W. Aldrich’s Teacher merit pay has merit when it comes to student scores, analysis shows and Matthew G. Springer’s Teacher Merit Pay and Student Test Scores: A Meta-Analysis have in common?

Irony, in that they both lack merit.

Let’s be brief but focus on the nonsense.

Well, as Aldrich reports about Springer’s research, a meta-analysis (this is research-speak that is supposed to strike fear into everyone since it is an analysis of much if not all of the existing research on a topic; thus, research about research), we now have discovered that merit pay in fact works! You see, it causes [insert throat clearing] “academic increase … roughly equivalent to adding three weeks of learning to the school year, based on studies conducted in U.S. schools, and four weeks based on studies across the globe.”

Wow! Three to four weeks of learning. That is … nonsense.

So…

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Posted by on April 24, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

James Kirylo: “That Time of Year: Spring and Testing”

The corporate education testing industry is crushing our public school children.

deutsch29

Below is a guest post by my valued colleague, James Kirylo, who taught at Southeastern Louisiana University before accepting a position at the University of South Carolina. He has also taught at the University of South Alabama, Universidad Evángelica del Paraguay, and the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

  James Kirylo

As I read Kirylo’s post, I noted its timeliness.

The flowers are blooming and the lawnmowers are humming all over my neighborhood.

Must be testing season.

That Time of Year: Spring and Testing

by

 James D. Kirylo

It is that time of the year again.  The unfolding of nature with its brilliance in color, its sweet aroma, and the emergence of new life gives pause and illuminates all that is good.  It is also that time of year when public schools across South Carolina—indeed the nation—energetically announce standardized test “kick-off” time with pep rallies, balloon send-offs, and a host of other activities…

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Posted by on April 20, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

College Or Die

Gary Rubinstein's Blog

Chalkbeat Tennessee recently reported that the new director of charter schools in Memphis is the former principal of the Charles A. Tindley Accelerated charter school in Indiana.  I went to the school’s website and found that the school’s motto, which they have painted in large letters on the walls of one of their hallways is, “College Or Die.”

Students are reminded of this motto each time they go to the ‘Student Life’ section of the website, as it is the first item on it.

Screen Shot 2017-04-16 at 8.00.17 PM

They have actually produced a video explaining this.  In the description for the video they say:

Located in one of Indianapolis’s roughest neighborhoods, the Charles A. Tindley Accelerated School is promising students not only that they’ll graduate from high school, but that they’ll be accepted into prestigious colleges and universities. The amazing thing is, they’re succeeding with a combination of tough love and academic inspiration.

Over…

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Posted by on April 17, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Beware the “Miracle” School Claim

radical eyes for equity

Published on Easter Sunday 2017 in the Post and Courier, Paul Bowers offered what I suspect will be a slow and painful series of unfortunate evidence that will discredit claims of educational miracles at Meeting Street Elementary @Brentwood; in this case, the public/private partnership elementary school has a unique and extreme suspension problem:

Meeting St suspensions copy

As a public/private venture, as a school choice and reform mechanism, Meeting Street Elementary @Brentwood is trapped in the need to advocate, sell its process. And since South Carolina has not held this experiment to the traditional school report card transparency, we are left only with the claims of school leaders.

However, we have well over a decade of “miracle” school bluster, all of which has been dismantled—suggesting that, I am sorry to say during this holiday season, there are no miracles.

While the school report card based mostly on high-stakes testing data is a significant…

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Posted by on April 17, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Joshua Starr: The American Public Opposes Vouchers

Donald Trump and Besty Devos do not care what the majority of Americans think.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Joshua Starr, a former school superintendent who is now chief executive officer of Phi Delta Kappa, reports that the American public opposes vouchers. They like the idea of “charters,” but most don’t know what charters are, that they may be run by for-profit or run by national corporations. They like the generic idea but they are not asked what they know about it. Perhaps they have nmagnet schools in mind.

Starr writes:

“Since 1969, PDK International has conducted an annual poll of the public’s attitudes toward the public schools. The methodology is rigorous, the questions are vetted by a politically diverse group of advisers, the data are robust and the results suggest that DeVos hasn’t been listening very carefully.

“Consider school choice, which DeVos has placed at the top of her policy agenda. Our poll reveals that, in general, Americans like the idea of choice in public education. On the…

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Posted by on April 9, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Beware the SAT and ACT: They Sell Confidential Student Data

Diane Ravitch's blog

PSAT/SAT day is Wednesday April 5 this week in NY schools and many other public schools in states around the country. These exams are now required in at least 9 states, but are given in many more states and districts, including NYC.

The College Board is unethically if not illegally amassing a huge amount of personal student information through the administration of these exams and selling it for a profit (though they call it “licensing” the names) at 42 cents per student. They are providing the information to a range of undisclosed institutions and companies, including reportedly the Department of Defense to help them recruit for the military.

If your child or your students are taking one of these tests, tell them to enter only the minimal info: name, address, gender and date of birth.

Read this post by privacy advocate Cheri Kiesecker:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/answer-sheet/wp/2017/03/30/how-the-sat-and-psat-collect-personal-data-on-students-and-what-the-college-board-does-with-it/?utm_term=.22c26edc837c

Leonie Haimson responded to the CB…

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Posted by on April 3, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

To Make America Great Again, Trump must return the United States to the 1960s.

Donald Trump thinks American became Great Again once he was elected president by the Electoral College but not the Popular Vote.

Lloyd Lofthouse

In 1900, 40-percent of Americans lived in poverty, 7-percent graduated from high school, and 3-percent from college. Women were chattel. That means they belonged to a man: father, husband, brother, etc. Children as young as seven could be sold into a form of slavery called servitude and in some states that included legal prostitution.  Even in states where prostitution was illegal, few ever did anything to save those children sold into that life by their poor parents.

How educated is the United States today? In 2014, 90.83-percent of Americans had a high school diploma or GED, and 44.08 percent had an associate and/or bachelor’s degree.

Since Trump doesn’t read, he doesn’t know this or doesn’t care, and that there is no time in American history that we were greater than we were in the 1960s.

If we look at the chart in this Atlantic piece, we discover America was…

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Posted by on April 2, 2017 in Uncategorized