Shrinking Possible

How did the vision of what’s possible get so small?

Klein

While this Tweet from former school chancellor Joel Klein refers to NYC, he could mean any number of cities where pitched battles over charter schools have raised a complicated question:  Who exactly is a progressive when it comes to education? Continue reading →

The Eduttante’s Balls

Eduttante: /ˌedjuˈtänt/
A shill or paid spokesperson advocating strict no-excuses charters for the urban communities in which he or she does not live. Related terms: educolonialist, whiteousness.

Today we meet a new character in our fast-paced edu-drama: the eduttante. This individual is among the most enthusiastic cheerleaders for the academies of excellence and innovation that are rapidly setting up shop in our urban centers. Often paid for his efforts (and rather well at that), the eduttante is a fierce devotee of military-style ‘no excuses’ charter schools—as long as they are for other people’s children. The eduttante’s own spawn seem to thrive in a somewhat, ahem, less restrictive environment.  Continue reading →

Single White Female

Many studies show that young white teachers are fresher and more innovative than their LIFO lifer peers of other races.

The achievement gap is the civil rights issue of our time—which is why it may be necessary for us to destroy a large part of the Black middle class in order to achieve our goal of closing said gap.

During the Chicago Teachers Union strike I encountered a stunning statistic. Since education reform arrived in Chicago, African Americans have dropped from 45% of the teaching force to just 19%. But how can that be? you must be wondering. Arne Duncan LUVS Black people. Alas reader, while the schools slated for closure, turnaround or charterization have had a significant percentage of African American teachers, the ones replacing them rarely do. But at least Chicago has made great strides in closing the achievement gap…

Chicago is not the only place where Education Reform, Inc. is quickly reshaping the teaching force into one that is fresher and more innovative younger and whiter. In urban areas across the country, middle-aged, middle class African American teachers are being pushed out to make room for the flavor of the day: vanilla. Continue reading →

These Charter Schools Are #1

Charter schools in Massachusetts are number one—at suspending students.

As regular readers can attest, EduShyster has been driven nearly INSANE (not to mention deep into the bottom of the occasional box of wine) by the vagaries of charter school math. That’s why it was such a relief to encounter some detective work by an enterprising local edu-blogger that found that charter school numbers really do add up—to quite a lot, it turns out.

First, a little context for your edu-fication. You see, charter schools are public schools, (unless their teachers want to join a union in which case they suddenly become private.) And because they are public the state collects reams of data about their students, their incredible shrinking classrooms and their 100% graduation rates. Tragically, reporters and state edu-crats are banned from viewing this information which means that the data often feel very lonely. And that, dear reader, is why it is so important that we have edu-bloggers.  Continue reading →