Recent comments

  • Reply to: Supreme Court Stomps on Clean Power, But Many Move Ahead Anyway   1 day 4 hours ago
    version of Iran's Supreme Leader. They are totally political. They use constitution as an excuse for whatever they want to do to please the right wing nuts.
  • Reply to: Bernie Sanders Criticizes Obama   2 days 8 hours ago
    Peg criticizing my president you have lost my families vote.
  • Reply to: Washington's Charter School Fight—Let's Set the Record Straight   3 days 8 hours ago

    PES:

    The "incredible problems" that you refer to will not be addressed by privatizing public schools.

    And actually, the drum beat has been, by those who want to privatize schools, that schools are "failing" but they are not.

    Ask most parents and they will tell you they like their student's teachers and the school is great so it must be the other schools that are "failing".

    If you are referring to a city like Detroit, it's not the schools that are "failing" but it is the politicians and those who could help who are failing the people of the city and their children.

    The majority of charter schools are populated by Teach for America (TFA) recruits who receive 5 weeks of training and then are sent to the urban schools. They are not certified or qualified to teach children.

    In Washington State, TFA is recruiting heavily in anticipation of charter schools springing up around the state.

    Many of these schools, like Summit charter school and the K12 charter chain, offer what they term "blended learning" which means seating a child in front of a computer for their lessons and testing. This is not education.

    What is good for the goose is not good for the gander in this case.

    I consider it racist.

    Some people refer to it as the re-colonization of our society, and I do see it as a trend in that direction.

    Some charter schools are established by educators but the majority of charter schools, are charter chains who do a great disservice to the community.

    For instance, in Washington State, Greendot and Summit are charter chains. In California, Summit required parents to either donate $500 to the school or provide an equal amount in school service. The parents of these targeted students can hardly put food on the table, let alone provide those kinds of resources to what is self-proclaimed a "public school".

    Greendot has a history of disrupting schools and communities with its "parent trigger" approach to getting students into their schools.

    In Washington State, there is a precedence to establish what are termed "option schools" which are public schools, within a school district. They are established by teachers and students, have public oversight, like all of the other public schools and are part of the school system. They are very successful. My daughter attended such a school. They are project based and student centered.

    They are public schools, not charter schools.

    There is no need for charter schools in Washington State. It opens the door for predators who want nothing more than to cash in on our students.

    In terms of funding, in Washington State, our legislators are being held in contempt of court by the Supreme Court for not performing their "paramount duty" to adequately fund our schools. In previous posts on my blog Seattle Education, I go into detail about this travesty.

    Charter schools will certainly not solve the problem by draining money away from the public schools as it has in New Orleans, Chicago and Philadelphia.

    The article I wrote is in response to the echo chamber of erroneous information about charter schools. That why the title includes the phrase "Let's set the record straight".

    Dora Taylor

  • Reply to: Cat Scratch Fever—Is Ted Nugent’s Racism Too Much for Republicans?   3 days 8 hours ago
    Hey Theodore, Stop Shaming My White Race! ! ! Gather up a few more brain cells and rub them together real hard and make an intelligent thought! Morons like you stagnate the progress that this country IS AND WILL BE CONTINUING TO MAKE! Like it or not! If you don't like it MOVE OUT OF MY COUNTRY!
  • Reply to: Washington's Charter School Fight—Let's Set the Record Straight   3 days 10 hours ago

    Thanks, Dora, for helping expose so clearly the conflicts of interest and financial motivation behind the charter school movement in Washington State and elsewhere. It's important to call people like the above commenter out on their misleading rhetoric - the myth that the charter movement is only and all about helping poor children. To suggest that those who oppose charter schools are the ones engaging in propaganda is to pretend that the Bill Gates and Waltons of the world aren't dumping millions (probably billions by now) into their disinformation machine, and that there's somehow a level playing field in this country when it comes to control of the media.

  • Reply to: Washington's Charter School Fight—Let's Set the Record Straight   3 days 10 hours ago

    PES: You say it's disingenuous to assert charters take advantage of "disadvantaged or minority populations" and then, in the next sentence, state "Charters do 'target' these folks..." So, they don't, but they do? Are we splitting hairs between taking advantage and targeting? And let's not get into Propaganda. The Charter industry's propaganda is ubiquitous. Many Charters are profit-driven wolves in sheep clothing, which you concede, and they get that way for one simple reason: Lack of oversight. It matters little that some charters operate legitimately. The issue and the objection is the hundreds or thousands that don't due to the "trust us, we know best" attitude that eschews accountability and community oversight.

  • Reply to: Cat Scratch Fever—Is Ted Nugent’s Racism Too Much for Republicans?   3 days 12 hours ago
    Thanks Dennis. The author says he's seen it both ways on Twitter, but that you're right. Correction made.
  • Reply to: Cat Scratch Fever—Is Ted Nugent’s Racism Too Much for Republicans?   4 days 1 hour ago
    MOLON Labe, not Mono Labe.
  • Reply to: America's Child Support System Must Be Revised   4 days 4 hours ago
    This article is stupid "yes the mother should get child support?!" Are you kidding me, why....I Love my kids and would love to have custody but the U.S. Kangaroo court system gives the mother custody 90% of the time. And so what, I still get to see them give them all the money they need, but I also give their mother child support payments in excess of $2,000 a month yet my children still ask me for money??? where does it go? who cares? The system was set up for one type of deadbeat without consideration for actual circumstance. Good intentions, poor execution on the article.
  • Reply to: Washington's Charter School Fight—Let's Set the Record Straight   4 days 7 hours ago

    Wow! What a distortion of the issue and the facts. As someone who works in education policy, I certainly understand the anti-charter sentiment. But you do a great disservice to the debate and your cause by distorting the issue to such an extent.

    Charters do open up the public education sector to non-profit and private sector players - including, yes, the occasional huckster or corrupt player. But this by no means represents the entire industry - which is mostly driven by former public school educators and administrators frustrated by the gridlock within the public education system.

    It is extremely disingenuous to assert that charters take advantage of economically disadvantaged or minority populations. Charters do 'target' these folks because, quite simply, those are the groups that are left behind in the public school system.

    There are also many charters dedicated exclusively to special education.

    There are many, many, MANY reasons to advocate for a better functioning, better funded public school system. NONE of those reasons are on display in this completely biased article. Propaganda like this will only alienate people who know enough to know how greatly you distort the issue.

    Anyone can see that there are incredible problems in American education, but we will not be able to solve these problems, much less agree on what the problems are, if interested parties choose to discuss these issues so disingenuously.

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Neither candidate mentioned the large protests outside the building as the debate began.

By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.


Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).


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