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“Who The Heck Are They Endorsing?!” - Part Two

In honor of the days leading up to Election Day, we are going to feature some facts about candidates that surprised us…and we thought would also raise the eyebrows of our fellow progressive reformers fighting for our kids every day.

We thought we’d just offer a sampling of some folks who are anything but progressive, but who have somehow earned the thumbs up of their local teachers unions.

Nick Marshall

 

Name: Nick Marshall (R-MO)

 Office: State Representative for District 030

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“Who The Heck Are They Endorsing?!” - Part One

In honor of the days leading up to Election Day, we are going to feature some facts about candidates that surprised us…and we thought would also raise the eyebrows of our fellow progressive reformers fighting for our kids every day.

We thought we’d just offer a sampling of some folks who are anything but progressive, but who have somehow earned the thumbs up of their local teachers unions.

Buddy Cianci 

 

Name: Buddy Cianci (R-RI)
Race: Mayor - Province, RI
Background: Two-time Felon
Endorsement: The Providence Teachers Union


Wait…what?!

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Accountability Debate Taking Place on Different Planets

By Charles Barone, Policy Director

Today, at an event hosted by the Alliance for Excellent Education, a group of advocates and academics including Linda Darling-Hammond of Stanford and Gene Wilhoit, formerly of the Council of Chief State School Officers, announced a "new approach on accountability and testing" (aka 51st state) that would, among other things, scale back annual statewide summative tests and increase the use of local assessments for purposes of accountability.

Weirdly enough, over at the Center American Progress, a new study issued today finds that it is districts much more so than states that account for what many consider "over-testing" taking place now in America's public schools. Which seems to suggest that the 51st state proposal is singling out the wrong level of government if what it wants to do is decrease the amount of testing. 

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DFER News Roundup

DFER News Roundup

By Stephanie Doctrow, Communications Coordinator and Web Editor and Bianca Dorsey, Communications Project Coordinator

DFER Seen & Heard:

  • Policy Director Charlie Barone’s piece on Bill Clinton’s recent remarks related to public charter schools and accountability made EdWeek’s Friday Reading List
  • Chicago students “urgently need access to more high-quality charter schools, particularly in underserved communities,” DFER-IL’s Rebeca Nieves Huffman said in the Chicago Sun-Times. Huffman also commented on the announcement that CPS will not consider plans for any new public charter schools this fall in Catalyst Chicago
  • “With every election and every legislative session, we the voters are responsible for getting the schools we want for Washington’s students,” DFER-WA’s Lisa Macfarlane writes in The Seattle Times.
  • CTU chief Karen Lewis “shouldn't continue to be tone deaf” regarding her conflict of interest between serving as a mayoral candidate and teacher contract negotiator, Huffman tells POLITICO’s Morning Education

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But what about failing schools?

Source: Associated Press

By Nicole Brisbane, DFER-NY State Director

It’s the fourth week of school for NYC Public Schools, and we’ve long awaited Chancellor Fariña’s plan for turning around the schools with the largest number of students who are not meeting proficiency on state exams - schools we know serve significant populations of poor and minority students. Finally, the new plan was revealed yesterday at P.S. 503/506 in Brooklyn.

Fariña’s plan started strong with a revamp of the letter grade system previously assigned to schools. The old letter grade system was initially intended to be a tool for internal use, showing schools’ growth on test scores. But in reality, the system provided very little useful information for parents.

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