Archive for Education
Suze Orman discusses student debt at the Remaking America Panel recorded January 12, 2012.
(Cuz I got nothin’.)
Casey Blake at the Asheville Citizen-Times did a great job going through the candidates for Asheville’s City School Board. That article is here. This is an amazingly accomplished set of candidates. Any of them would do an excellent job, but it’s up to City Council to select those candidates who will be the right people at this time. Go have a look, and please let me know your thoughts.
The process is this: Anyone could apply up until the deadline last month. Thirteen people did. City Council composed five essay questions, and eleven of the candidates responded. Council members are reviewing the essay responses, and we will each choose five candidates to interview. School Board Member Peggy Dalman gets an automatic interview as she is applying for a second term, and at least five others will be interviewed based on which candidates receive the most nods from Council members. School Board candidate interviews will take place Tuesday, March 12 from 10am-Noon in Council Chambers in City Hall. That night we’ll vote on who ought to occupy the three available seats.
A bill allowing charter school applicants to apply directly to the state passed its first hurdle in Nashville Tuesday, potentially setting up a way for the suburbs here to have charter schools outside the control of the Unified Shelby County School Board.
The bill would allow charter school operators in Shelby and Davidson counties freedom to apply to the state to approve their charter applications instead of the local school board.
Rep. Joe Pitts, D-Chattanooga, challenged White on why the law should apply only to Memphis and Nashville.
“That’s where the activity in charters is going on. We thought it best to start the discussion there,” White said.
Would that would be a discussion like the “negotiations” over Asheville’s water supply or over Charlotte’s airport?
I just spoke with a town clerk on the other end of the state. When I told her about the NC Senate and the House bills aimed at placing the Charlotte airport under state control, she gasped, “That’s just not right.”
UPDATE: Loretta Boniti of News14 is reporting via Twitter: “Dianna Lightfoot, DHHS appointee, has informed Sect. Wos she will NOT take this position.”
Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Aldona Wos announced Tuesday that Dianna Lightfoot has been appointed the state’s new director of Child Development and Early Education.
The Division of Child Development and Early Education, or DCDEE, oversees the state’s child-care program as well as NC Pre-K, which was moved into Health and Human Services from the Department of Public Instruction last session.
The National Physicians Center for Family Resources, which Lightfoot founded in 2001, advocates against “institutional” preschool programs.
“In the case of early childhood education programs, available research suggests they may actually be inferior to early learning opportunities at home. In addition, it appears the demand for out of home childcare is not as prevalent as many advocates claim,” says an open letter signed by Lightfoot on the group’s website.
The letter also warns that “There is great potential for early learning institutions to foster more dependency on the government (i.e. taxpayer) and more of an entitlement mentality.”
Whenever NC Gov. Pat McCrory’s predecessor, Democrat Beverly Perdue put her foot in her mouth, Republicans were gleeful. Now that the shoe is in the other mouth, so to speak, they might advise the Republican governor to avoid conservative talk radio shows. On the Tuesday edition of former Reagan education secretary Bill Bennett’s radio show, McCrory opened his mouth and promptly inserted his wingtip.
RALEIGH — Gov. Pat McCrory said Tuesday he’s determined to get North Carolina’s public university system to focus on teaching what’s useful in terms of getting a job and criticized an “educational elite” for offering courses in subjects such as gender studies that don’t lead students onto clear career paths…
“I think some of the educational elite have taken over our education where we are offering courses that have no chance of getting people jobs,” McCrory said on Bennett’s program.
“I don’t want to subsidize that if that’s not going to get someone a job,” McCrory told Bennett. “Right now, I’m looking for engineers. I’m looking for technicians. I’m looking for mechanics.” McCrory himself was a political science and education major, while Bennett holds a Ph.D. in philosophy.
In government, if I help myself to taxpayer dollars, we call that embezzlement and I go to jail. In the private sector, if I help myself to taxpayer dollars, we call that innovation and I get hailed as a visionary exponent of public-private partnership. That’s the lesson of a Nov. 17 investigation by Anne Ryman of the Arizona Republic into the state’s charter schools.
In her examination of Arizona’s 50 largest nonprofit charter schools and all of Arizona’s nonprofit charter schools with assets exceeding $10 million, Ryman found “at least 17 contracts or arrangements, totaling more than $70 million over five years and involving about 40 school sites, in which money from the non-profit charter school went to for-profit or non-profit companies run by board members, executives or their relatives.” That says to me that in Arizona, at least, charter-school corruption isn’t the exception. It’s the rule. And that’s just in the nonprofit charter schools. Documentation for the for-profit schools is not publicly available. What are the odds that charter-school proprietors operating in the dark are less inclined to enrich themselves at public expense?
More at New Republic.
One of these days people will wake up to this scam.
This just landed in my inbox. If you’re interested in learning more, then head out to Biltmore Park Thursday morning.
Word on the street is that there’s a website release on the way Now updated with website:
Politicians Gain, Schools Lose Tour comes to Asheville
Rep. Tim Moffitt voted for a tax loophole for wealthy lawyers, lobbyists and millionaires that cost the state $336 million a year, while cutting public education to the bone. Did Rep. Moffitt profit from the loophole?
Progress NC Action wants answers. The “Politicians Gain, Schools Lose Tour” is promoting a petition calling on Rep. Moffitt to come clean and pledge to end the loophole. You can find the petition at www.MoffittGainsSchoolsLose.com.
WHO: Progress North Carolina Action
WHAT: Politicians Gain, Schools Lose Tour, including appropriate visuals, handouts and speeches
WHEN: Thursday, Sept. 27, 9am
WHERE: Biltmore Park Town Square
Near the REI and YMCA
1 Town Square Blvd.
Asheville, NC 28803
So here’s how this works. I have a press credential that gets me some places but not others. In order to get down to the floor where the delegates are, I have to trade my credential for a floor pass. From the moment I receive that pass, I have twenty minutes to go to the floor, do my thing, and get back. Tardiness can result in losing credentials the next day. It’s a system that allows lots of different folks to get onto the floor, but it’s not much time.
In an effort to capture a bit of the flavor of the convention floor (tastes like freedom!) as well as offering some personalities and issues, I asked several delegates one simple question. What is the most important issue to you in this election year? Follow after the jump to hear four of our North Carolina delegates answer that question.
I grew up thinking that education was its own reward. In college, I studied, philosophy, art, drama and science. Yeah, I waited tables and traveled for awhile. After college, I was appalled at the attitude of many customers. They’d ask if I was in college. No, I told them, I’d graduated. Next question: What was your major?
When I told them, their eyes went blank. “But what are you going to do with it,” they’d ask. You could see the gears going round in their heads. How did that (a philosophy degree) translate into *that* as they mentally rubbed their finger$$ together.