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Tag Archives: Arne Duncan

Discovering the Real U.S. Prison Pipeline

I understand that Arne Duncan, the worst Secretary of Education in U.S. history, is talking about the alleged school-to-prison pipeline on Sirius talk radio today (Sunday, October 11, 2015).

For decades there has been a myth that a school-to-prison pipeline exists in the United States, and that the public schools are responsible for the exploding prison population.

This is a lie supported by propaganda paid for by the for-profit, autocratic, often fraudulent and inferior corporate education reform movement.

The U.S. had compulsory public education in every state by 1917, but the Prison Pipeline wasn’t built until the Nixon (1969 – 1974) and then Reagan (1981 – 1989) administrations.

Image for Prison and Jail Population from 1920 to 2013

  • In 1920, the population of the U.S. was 106 million with about 100 thousand in prison and jail (0.09% of the population).
  • In 1940, the population had reached 132 million with about 250,000 in prison and jail (0.18%)
  • In 1960, the population was up to 180.7 million and the prison population ratio was lower than 1940 (0.13%)
  • In 1970, Republican President Nixon declared war on drugs.
  • In 1980, the populated was 226.5 million and the prison population had just passed 500 thousand (0.22%).
  • By 2000, the population had reached 282.2 million, and the prison population hit 2 million (0.7%).

What caused the growth of the U.S. prison population after 1983 has nothing to do with America’s public schools and everything to do with the fraudulent, corrupt, autocratic, for-profit corporate education reform movement that parallels the growth of the private-sector for-profit prison movement in the U.S. that spends millions annually to lobby government to increase the length of prison sentences and increase the number of crimes that leads citizens, who mostly live in poverty and are illiterate, to prison.

In addition, the The Washington Post reported how for-profit prisons have become the biggest lobby no one is talking about

Federal and state governments have a long history of contracting out specific services to private firms, including medical services, food preparation, vocational training, and inmate transportation. The 1980s, though, ushered in a new era of prison privatization. With a burgeoning prison population resulting from the War on Drugs (In June 1970, President Nixon, another Republican like Reagan, declared this war on drugs) and increased use of incarceration, prison overcrowding and rising costs became increasingly problematic for local, state, and federal governments.

In response to this expanding criminal justice system, private business interests saw an opportunity for expansion, and consequently, private-sector involvement in prisons moved from the simple contracting of services to contracting for the complete management and operation of entire prisons.

The modern private prison business first emerged and established itself publicly in 1984 when the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) was awarded a contract to take over a facility in Hamilton County, Tennessee. This marked the first time that any government in the country had contracted out the complete operation of a jail to a private operator. The following year, CCA gained further public attention when it offered to take over the entire state prison system of Tennessee for $200 million. The bid was ultimately defeated due to strong opposition from public employees and the skepticism of the state legislature. Despite that initial defeat, CCA since then has successfully expanded, as have other for-profit prison companies. – Private Prisons in the United States

The real title of this prison pipeline should be ALL of the following options:

  • The Arne Duncan to Prison Pipeline
  • The David Coleman to Prison Pipeline
  • The Pearson to Prison Pipeline
  • The Walton family to Prison Pipeline
  • The Bill Gates to Prison Pipeline
  • The Eli Broad to Prison Pipeline
  • The Koch brothers to Prison Pipeline
  • The President Reagan to Prison Pipeline
  • The A Nation at Risk to Prison Pipeline
  • The G. W. Bush to Prison Pipeline
  • The Bill Clinton to Prison Pipeline
  • The President Obama to Prison Pipeline
  • The for-profit, autocratic often fraudulent and inferior corporate education reform movement to Prison Pipeline.
  • The for-profit war to privatize the public sector to Prison Pipeline.

To read more about what the autocratic, for-profit corporate education reform movement has done to build this pipeline to prison, I suggest you read the ACLU’s What is the School-to-Prison Pipeline?

__________________________________

HEY, LET’S BLAME IT ON THE TEACHER AS USUAL

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, with a BA in journalism and an MFA in writing, who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

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How to Recognize a Corporate Education Reformer in 5 Easy Steps

How to Recognize a Corporate Education Reformer in 5 Easy Steps
  1. RheeForm promises are too good to be true

Without the use of evidence or facts, RheeFormers will promise miraculous results—the RheeForm term was coined to dishonor Michelle Rhee, the witch-queen of the corporate reform movement.

Michee Rhee the Queen Witch

For instance, Michelle Rhee and Kaya Henderson boasted they would achieve 78 goals to improve the Washington D.C. public schools, but they only achieved 1.5 or 2.8% of the total of the first 54 goals assessed—that is a failure rate of 97.2% that the corporate media never reported on the cover of Time Magazine and/or the front page of every major newspaper in the United States.

Did ANY of Michelle Rhee’s promises actually work in DC?—click the link and read the story.

What happened to these two Fraudsters? Kaya Henderson still has a job running DC’s public schools, and Michelle Rhee is a multi-millionaire whose every word is still breathlessly repeated as gospel truth by most of the corporate media.

  1. Beware of fancy titles linked to any RheeFormer

RheeFormers will name their corporate charter schools and/or organizations with words that promise success, mom, apple pie and the flag. These titles help fool parents and children who think that whatever alchemy the RheeFormers use, it means their children will end up in college, never go into debt and land a great job leading to wealth and happiness for life.

For instance, a chain of New York Charter schools called “Success Academy” with Eva Moskowitz as their highly paid CEO, who is a serious a candidate for Michelle Rhee’s witch-queen crown.

“We were hoping for academic rigor. Instead we found a school that was overly strict, cold, and insensitive to the overall needs of the young children entrusted in their care. My son wet his pants for the first time since he was three years old because the school did not let him go to the bathroom when he asked. The school was incapable of recognizing that he had also developed anxiety around going down the hall to the bathroom.” – Business Insider

“I spent a lot of time on the phone with the author, Daniel Bergner. When he asked why I was critical of Moskowitz, I said that what she does to get high test scores is not a model for public education or even for other charters. The high scores of her students is due to intensive test prep and attrition. She gets her initial group of students by holding a lottery, which in itself is a selection process because the least functional families don’t apply. She enrolls small proportions of students with disabilities and English language learners as compared to the neighborhood public school. And as time goes by, many students leave.” – Alternet.org

  1. RheeFormers blame public school teachers and the democratic teachers’ unions for failures that do not exist and/or is not their fault.

RheeFormers will convince any gullible fool who will listen that it is the fault of the public schools and teachers’ unions that your child isn’t doing well in school and doesn’t read.  They will never mention that the real culprit is the child’s environment that has little or nothing to do with the public school or its teachers.  To a RheeFormer, everything is the public school teachers fault unless they are a TFA recruit.

If the public education system in the United States is broken as the RheeFormers keep claiming in their relentless media propaganda, then why is U.S. ranked #5 as one of The Most Educated Countries in the World. There are 196 countries in the world. That means the United States is in the top 2.55%. How much closer to number one does the United States have to be?

The 1966 Coleman Report: Coleman himself later argued that the most important research findings of the study were twofold. First, it showed that variations in school quality (as indexed by the usual measures such as per pupil expenditure, size of school library, and so on) showed little association with levels of educational attainment, when students of comparable social backgrounds were compared across schools. (Differences in students’ family backgrounds, by comparison, showed a substantial association with achievement.) Second, a student’s educational attainment was not only related to his or her own family background, but also (less strongly) to the backgrounds of the other students in the school.

  1. RheeFormers will boast that corporate Charters are and will be better than democratic public schools.

However, several studies have revealed that corporate Charters are about the same as the public schools they are replacing, and other studies and investigations across the country agree. When these studies look closer, they find that the corporate charters are attempting to stack the deck in their favor by getting rid of the most difficult children to teach—something public schools can’t do.

A piece in The Washington Post reveals, “The primary findings of the CREDO report show that charter school students’ test performance is basically the same as the performance of students enrolled in traditional public schools.”

Then why is the corporate education reform movement working so hard to demonize public school teachers, their unions and get rid of the democratic, transparent, non-profit public schools and replace them with opaque, for-profit corporate Charter schools run by mangers and CEOs?

The UGLY Answers:

Report: Millions of dollars in fraud, waste found in charter school sector

Charter School Vulnerabilities to Waste, Fraud, and Abuse

“A new report released today reveals that fraudulent charter operators in 15 states are responsible for losing, misusing or wasting over $100 million in taxpayer money.”

Tales of Fraud, Mismanagement, and Mis-Education

“There is so much news from place to place about the financial and management scandals in particular charter schools and charter management organizations that it is hard to keep track. Schools are taking public money—and too frequently finding a way to make a profit—while failing to serve the children they enroll or neglecting to enroll particular groups of children with special needs.”

  1. The leaders of the RheeForm movement do not put their children in the same schools they are reforming, robbing or getting rid of.

What Kind of Education Do “Reformers” Want for Their Kids?

Education Reformers Send Their Kids to Private School

Public school reformer Michelle Rhee sends child to private school: Should we care?

In the case of Rhee, some find her choice to send one of her children to a private school hypocritical because, as Ravitch explains it in her blog post, Rhee “advocates that other people’s children should have large classes, inexperienced teachers, merit pay, evaluations based on test scores, and nonstop testing” and she’s sending her daughter to a school with “small classes, lovely facilities, a rich curriculum, and experienced teachers.”

Arne Duncan’s children to attend private school in Chicago

Where Arne Duncan Sends His Kids to School

Conclusion: Moyers & Company reports that the “reformers” say they want excellent education for all; they want great teachers; they want to “close the achievement gap”; they want innovation and effectiveness; they want the best of everything for everyone. They pursue these universally admired goals by privatizing education, lowering the qualifications for future teachers, replacing teachers with technology, increasing class sizes, endorsing for- profit organizations to manage schools, using carrots and sticks to motivate teachers and elevating standardized test scores as the ultimate measure of education quality. …

The “reform” movement is really a “corporate reform” movement, funded to a large degree by major foundations, Wall Street hedge fund managers, entrepreneurs and the US Department of Education. The movement is determined to cut costs and maximize competition among schools and among teachers. …

The reformers are Republicans and Democrats. They include not only far- right Republican governors but some Democratic governors as well. They include President Barack Obama and Secretary Arne Duncan, as well as Democratic mayors in such cities as Newark, Chicago and Los Angeles. Elected officials of both parties have signed on to an agenda that threatens the future of public education. …

The corporate reform movement has a well- honed message: We are the reformers. We have solutions. The public schools are failing. The public schools are in decline. The public schools don’t work. The public schools are obsolete and broken. We want to innovate. We know how to fix schools. We know how to close the achievement gap. We are leading the civil rights movement of our era. We want a great teacher in every classroom. Class size doesn’t matter.

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

Crazy is Normal promotional image with blurbs

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

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The Top-10 Most Unwanted List—the Enemies of Public Education

This list reveals the most dangerous enemies of public education and how they earned their spot in infamy. To discover why they landed on this list, click the links included with each name below the brick wall. This list is subject to change at any time.

Top Ten List on Birck Wall Updated Jan 28 - 2015

#1
#BillGates
Spending billions to destroy Public Schools
with testing agenda to rank & fire teachers
Living in Dialogue

#2
The #Waltons
Why are #Walmart Billionaires Bankrolling Phony School Reform
Bill Moyers.com

#3
Who is #EliBroad and why is he trying to destroy public education?
Defend Public Education.net

#4
#KochBrothers
cherry-picks Constitution
Rewriting History
To brainwash children with libertarian ideas
Diane Ravtich.net

#5
#ArneDuncan
False apologies of Arne Duncan
Who contributed to significant crises in urban school districts
Yohuru Williams at The Huffington Post.com

#6
Who is #DavidColeman
Architect of Common Core and War on Pub-Ed
who ignores professionalism of teachers
Diane Ravtich.com

#7
#JebBush
Horrible record on Education
His friends and allies are getting rich from his reform agenda
The New Yorker Reviews Jeb’s Record on Education

#8
#AndrewCuomo is backstabbing governor,
who wants to kill traditional public education in New York State
Punishing Teachers: Cuomo in 2015 Was Jindal in 2012

#9
#EveMoskowitz
Alleged Liar & Deceiver
who pays herself 500K+ annually from tax payers
#SuccessAcademy
NYC Expert Debunks Eva Moskowitz’s Extravagant and Misleading Claims

#10
Did #MichelleRhee achieve most of her broken promises in D.C.
NO!
She failed with 98.5% of boasted goals
Did ANY of Michelle Rhee’s promises actually work in DC?

EXTENDID LIST

If you want to suggest someone who deserved to be added to the extended list—beyond the Top Ten—please leave a comment with a name and provide a link to evidence that shows why they deserve a spot on the extended list of public education’s worst enemies.

Michael Barber
The Boston Globe: Overhaul of schools is wrong diagnosis

Bobbie Jindal
Bill Moyers & Company: Who are the Corporate Reformers of Public Education?

John White
More On John White’s Spring 2015 PARCC Fraud

Chris Christie
Governor Chris Christie Announces Privatizing Scheme for Camden City Schools

Rahm Emanuel
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s War on Teachers and Chidlren

John Kasich
Who’s Getting Screwed by Ohio’s Budget Cuts?

David Welch
David Welch: The Man Behind Vergara v. California

John Arnold
A Private Putsch Against Public Schooling

Rick Scott
Public Education can’t survive four more years of Rick Scott and Gary Chartrand

Campbell Brown
Is Campbell Brown the New Michelle Rhee of School Reform?
Fact-Checking Campbell Brown: What she said, what research really shows
Campbell Brown refuses to disclose donors and distorts facts on Colbert Report

Cami Anderson
http://mcorfield.blogspot.com/2015/01/camis-epic-fail-in-eye-of-another-epic.html

Mike Madigan
http://chicago.suntimes.com/chicago-politics/7/71/169717/cps-says-no-to-charter-schools-madigan-says-yes

Joel Klein
http://eagnews.org/sol-stern-and-joel-klein-tell-common-core-fairy-tales/

Rupert Murdock
http://www.schoolsmatter.info/2014/01/indiana-hb1320-alec-bill-gates-rupert.html

Michael Milken
http://modeducation.blogspot.com/2011/06/convict-who-stole-public.html

Merryl Tisch
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mercedes-schneider/to-merryl-tisch-take-resp_b_6245436.html

Fethullah Gulen
http://benswann.com/exclusive-fbi-whistleblower-and-teacher-expose-islamic-gulen-movement-infiltrating-u-s-through-charter-schools/

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

Runner Up in Biography/Autobiogrpahy
2015 Florida Book Festival

Crazy-is-Normal-a-classroom-expose-200x300

Honorable Mention in Biography/Autobiography
2014 Southern California Book Festival
2014 New England Book Festival
2014 London Book Festival

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

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Explaining the TSP Education Equation

Decades ago in one staff meeting at the high school where I was teaching, we were told that for education to work, all the stakeholders—teachers, students and parents—had to be involved.

Here’s the TSP equation: T + S + P = E [which means: Teachers + Students + Parents = Education]

To define this formula further and add responsibility as a factor, let’s look at the results of the 1966 Coleman Report. In the 1960s, James Samuel Coleman, PhD, and several other scholars were commissioned by the US Department of Education to write a report on educational equality in the US. It was one of the largest studies in history, with more than 650,000 students in the sample. The result was a massive report of over 700 pages. A precise reading of the Coleman Report reveals that student background and socioeconomic status are much more important in determining educational outcomes than are measured differences in school resources.

Coleman explained, “differences in school facilities and curricula, which are made to improve schools, are so little related to differences in achievement levels of students that, with few exceptions, their efforts [or the effects of different classes or curricula] fail to appear in a survey of this magnitude.”

The Coleman report identified 14 correlates of elementary and secondary school achievement, six of which are related to school: curriculum, teacher preparation, teacher experience, class size, technology, and school safety. The remaining eight correlates are categorized as “Before and Beyond School:” parent participation, student mobility, birth-weight, lead poisoning, hunger and nutrition, reading in the home, television watching, and parent availability.

The study concluded that the negative impacts on school achievement of single-parent homes, poverty in the minority communities, food insecurity, parent unemployment, child care disparities, substantial differences in children’s measured abilities as they start kindergarten, frequency of student absences, and lack of educational resources and support in the home “account for about two-thirds [66 percent] of the large difference … in NAEP eight-grade reading scores.” Coleman Report at Encyclopedia.com

Then there are student test scores. From the Economic Policy Institute—Problems with the use of student test scores to evaluate teachers—we learn: “Student test score gains are also strongly influenced by school attendance and a variety of out-of-school learning experiences at home, with peers, at museums and libraries, in summer programs, on-line, and in the community. Well-educated and supportive parents can help their children with homework and secure a wide variety of other advantages for them. Other children have parents who, for a variety of reasons, are unable to support their learning academically. Student test score gains are also influenced by family resources, student health, family mobility, and the influence of neighborhood peers and of classmates who may be relatively more advantaged or disadvantaged.

“Only about 4% to 16% of the variation in a teacher’s value-added ranking [from the results of standardized tests] in one year can be predicted from his or her rating in the previous year.”

What does the education equation look like once we add the responsibly factor?

T [33; 4 to 16] + S + P [66; 84 to 96] = Education

Explained: The Teachers one child has K through 12 are responsible for about 33 percent of what a child learns in school in addition to being responsible for about 4 to 16 percent of the results on standardized tests. This means, if a student has 43 teachers K to 12, each teacher would be responsible for about 0.76 percent of a child’s education and even less for the results of standardized tests.

Students + Parents [and other out of school factors] are responsible for about 66 percent of the results of a child’s education in addition to being responsible for 84 to 96 percent of the results on standardized tests.

How can Bill Gates, Arne Duncan and President Obama—and all the other fake education reformers—justify firing teachers based on the results of standardized tests and stripping teachers of their Constitutional due process rights as a public employee when each teacher is only responsible for less than 1 percent of a child’s education K to 12?

 _______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

His third book is Crazy is Normal, a classroom exposé, a memoir. “Lofthouse presents us with grungy classrooms, kids who don’t want to be in school, and the consequences of growing up in a hardscrabble world. While some parents support his efforts, many sabotage them—and isolated administrators make the work of Lofthouse and his peers even more difficult.” – Bruce Reeves

lloydlofthouse_crazyisnormal_web2_5

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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Facts that reveal Obama’s Manufactured Crises of College-Career readiness and the alleged Failure of Public Schools

What is the role of the public schools? The Center for Ethical Leadership (founded in 1991) says that public education is foundational to a healthy democracy and developing our humanity—not to have every student achieve high scores on standardized tests.

After you read this post, you decide if the U.S. public schools are doing their job and what that job description should be.

The goals of G. W. Bush’s No Child Left Behind, and Obama’s Race to the Top and the President’s insane Common Core agenda that demands 100 percent of high school graduates by 2014-15, who are 17/18 years old, must be college and/or career ready is horribly wrong when we look at the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov) report on the educational needs of the job market.

According to bls.gov, if 100 percent of Americans were college educated, then most would be overqualified for 67 – 77 percent of the jobs [96.5 to 110.9 million], and 26 percent of those jobs [37.4 million] don’t even require a high school diploma or its equivalent. In 2013, 143.9 million Americans were employed in the civilian labor force.

How can there be a public education crises when only 40 percent of the jobs require a high school degree and by age 25, 90 percent of Americans have a high school degree or its equivalent? I think those numbers say that the workforce is overqualified and someone is cherry picking numbers to manufacture a public education crises.

Then there are the jobs that require a bachelor’s degree or better—that number is 23 percent [about 33 million jobs], but according to a special report of The Most Educated Countries in the World, 42.5 percent of Americans [about 90 million] have a college degree. That means for every job that requires a college degree, there are 2.7 college graduates, and Bill Gates and President Obama want more college graduates and are willing to punish teachers by firing them and then turn public schools over to corporations if public school teachers don’t achieve the President’s artificial and unnecessary goals.

To discover what happens to college graduates who live in countries with high college graduation rates, we only need to look at South Korea, Russia and Japan.

President Obama and his education secretary, Arne Duncan, have frequently cited Korea in contrast to America’s alleged shortcomings. They mention the diligence of its students, the commitment of its parents, its success in equipping successive generations to compete.

But the truth is that Korean officials are alarmed that many graduates are not finding jobs—more than 40 percent in the past year according to Washington Post.com

What’s even more shocking is the fact that the United States already has a higher percentage of college graduates than South Korea according to a special report of The Most Educated Countries in the World.

10. Australia, 38.3 %
9. Finland, 39.3 %
8. New Zealand, 39.3%
7. United Kingdom, 39.4%
6. South Korea, 40.4%
5. United States, 42.5%
4. Israel, 46.4%
3. Japan, 46.4%
2. Canada, 51.3%
1. Russia, 53.5%

As for Russia, according to DE, Germany’s international broadcaster, approximately 30 percent of Russian university graduates under the age of 25 don’t have a full-time job. If they do, they’ve had a rough time getting there.

Anywhere from 65 to 70 percent of graduates are not able to find work directly after graduation, but require, on average, five-to-six months to find a position. Nor is that position protected under Russian labor law. Twenty-five percent of those employed do not have a contract with their employer.

And often, those jobs do not provide enough to survive on. According to a study by the New Economic School in Moscow, more than 50 percent of young academics who work in the Russian public sector have second or even third jobs in order to make ends meet.

In addition, Japan’s college graduates also face a tough job market. The Wall Street Journal reports, “Monday’s data on how recent Japanese college graduates are faring in the job market show that, despite a slight improvement, the overall picture remains grim.”

In conclusion, what is the real agenda of President Obama, Bill Gates and the rest of the fake education reformers—a topic worth exploring?

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).

Crazy is Normal promotional image with blurbs

Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy. His short story A Night at the “Well of Purity” was named a finalist of the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards. His wife is Anchee Min, the international, best-selling, award winning author of Red Azalea, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year (1992).

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

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