Category Archives: Uncategorized

Jersey Jazzman: The Secrets of Success Academy

Learn what makes a corporate charter school like Eva Moskowitz’s Success Academies different from public schools. If you love dictators and fascists, you will love Eva’s money machine.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Most of you who have been reading this blog over the past five years know the secrets of Success Academy’s “success.” Careful selection of students. Exclusion of those unlikely to succeed. Lots of outside money.

Jersey Jazzman has done us the favor of documenting these strategies.

He found exactly what you would expect:

“Schools like Success Academy almost always have structural advantages — advantages that have nothing to do with their governance — over the schools against which they compare themselves:

“Different student populations.

“Resource advantages.

“A less-experienced, less-expensive faculty.

“A longer school day/year and/or smaller class sizes and/or tutoring, made possible by #2 & #3 in combination with free-riding on the public district schools.

“Strict disciplinary codes which encourage students who do not thrive in a “no excuses” environment to leave.

“In the minority of cases where “successful” charters out-perform expectations, I have seen no compelling evidence that freedom…

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Posted by on August 23, 2017 in Uncategorized


Bill Phillis: Charter Schools Are Bought and Sold; Not Public Schools

Corporate Charter schools are ushering in an age where local communities and parents have little say over the education of their children because those children are now a commodity and not a person.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Bill Phillis, founder of the Ohio Coalition for Equity and Adequacy and former deputy commissioner of education in Ohio, laments the commercializations that charter schools have introduced into K-12 schooling, while claiming to be “public schools”:

He writes:

“For sale: A school–The practice of buying and selling charter schools signals the complete disconnect between school and community

“The greatest human-inspired public institution-the common school-was created as a school for all children. The nexus between the community and the common school is powerful in the lives of school children; charter schools are not community-based entities.

“Parents in a school district would be shocked if they opened the morning paper and read the headline: School district for sale. That happens in the charter world.

“Charter school organizations are bought and sold. Ron Packard, former CEO of K12-Inc. (in Ohio, K-12 Inc. operates the Ohio Virtual Academy) left K-12, Inc. and started a…

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Posted by on August 17, 2017 in Uncategorized


Who Cares More About Black Children: The NAACP Or Rightwingers?

Diane Ravitch's blog

The NAACP bravely spoke out in favor of regulating charter schools to make them accountable, transparent, and subject to the same standards as public schools.

Most people would say that the NAACP’s concerns and recommendations are reasonable.

But supporters of charter schools are outraged and hysterical.

The Center for Education Reform, which has advocated for charters for more than 20 years, astonishingly called the NAACP “opportunity’s opponent.” This is a breathtakingly insulting slur coming from a conservative organization that has long been hostile to public education.

CER provides a link to other rightwing organizations that oppose the NAACP’s criticism of public schools.

Who cares more about black children?

The NAACP or the Heritage Foundation?


The NAACP or Betsy DeVos?

The NAACP or hedge fund managers?

The NAACP or the Walton Family Foundation?

The NAACP or the Center for Education Reform?

The NAACP or the Thomas B…

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Posted by on August 9, 2017 in Uncategorized


The NAACP Report: Why Are Charter Supporters Complaining?

Diane Ravitch's blog

Please read the NAACP report on charter schools.

Ever since it was released, charter supporters have complained bitterly about the report and accused the NAACP of being paid off by the unions.

This is ridiculous. It is a sound and sober report.

Consider its recommendations.

1. There should be more equitable and adequate funding for schools serving children of color. The school finance system is extremely unfair and inequitable over states, districts, and schools. School funding in 36 states has not returned to its pre-2008 levels, when budgets were slashed. Federal funds in real dollar amounts have declined for Title I and special education over the same period.

Do charter supporters disagree?

2. School finance reform is needed to ensure that dollars go where the needs are greatest.

Do charter supporters disagree?

3. Invest in low-performing schools and in schools that have a significant opportunity to close achievement gaps. “Students…

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Posted by on August 8, 2017 in Uncategorized


Katherine Stewart: The Racist, Fundamentalist Roots of the Attack on Public Schools

“When these people talk about ‘government schools,’ they want you to think of an alien force, and not an expression of democratic purpose. And when they say ‘freedom,’ they mean freedom from democracy itself.”

Diane Ravitch's blog

Katherine Stewart, author of the book “The Good News Club: The Christian Right’s Stealth Assault on America’s Children,writes in the New York Times about the historical origins of attacks on democratic public schools.

When the DeVos crowd and rightwing think tanks refer to “government schools,” they are drawing their rhetoric from a dark and ugly history, tainted by racism, anti-Catholicism, and hatred of democracy itself.

Trump, DeVos, the religious right, and conservatives today promote “school choice” so children do not have to attend “government schools.” But where did this language come from?

She writes:

Before the Civil War, the South was largely free of public schools. That changed during Reconstruction, and when it did, a former Confederate Army chaplain and a leader of the Southern Presbyterian Church, Robert Lewis Dabney, was not happy about it. An avid defender of the biblical “righteousness” of slavery, Dabney railed against the…

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Posted by on July 31, 2017 in Uncategorized


Roundup of NAACP’s Harder Stance on Charter Schools

Roundup of NAACP’s Harder Stance on Charter Schools

The NAACP comes out swinging at corporate charter schools.

Cloaking Inequity

I just returned from the 2017 NAACP national convention in Baltimore. Two important events occurred. The first I’m not going to talk about here on Cloaking Inequity until after the NAACP National Board meeting in the fall— I learned my lesson last year :). Second, the NAACP’s Task Force on High Quality Education released a report after their year long listening tour that took place across the United States.

Here’s what I wrote in The Progressive Magazine about the Task Force and its recent report.

NAACP Seeks to Ban For-Profit Charter Schools and Increase Local Control

The NAACP, one of the nation’s most prominent civil rights groups, released a major report on charter schools today.

Screen Shot 2017-07-26 at 11.07.20 AM.png“Quality Education for All: One School at a Time” presents a…

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Posted by on July 28, 2017 in Uncategorized


A MUST READ! Think National, Fight Local: The Story of Indianapolis and the DPE (Destroy Public Education) Movement

To fight the anti-democratic, anti-community local-national effort to privatize and profitize public schools, we must organize and fight back in our local communities first.

Diane Ravitch's blog

This very important post was written for this blog by Jim Scheurich on behalf of himself, Gayle Cosby, and Nathanial Williams, who are identified in the text. They are experienced in the school politics of Indianapolis, a city whose school system is being systematically dismantled and privatized. They have been active in the fight against what they call the DPE (Destroy Public Education) model in their city. Their experience and insights are extremely informative, especially their recognition that the DPE movement is not limited to Indianapolis; it has gone national. Indianapolis is only one of its targets. The business community, civic leaders, political leaders, DFER, the Mind Trust, and Stand for Children have joined together to Destroy Public Education. As they attack democratic institutions, they falsely claim that “it is all about the kids” and they claim they are advancing civil rights. Instead, it is about money and power and…

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Posted by on July 23, 2017 in Uncategorized