The Billionaire Boys Club

Jerry Johnson, owner of the Dallas Cowboys, has much in common with the hedge funders who are behind the corporate education reform movement.

What do the hedge funders and venture capitalists who have taken it upon themselves to dismantle improve America’s public schools have in common with the owners of the National Football League? For one, both are fabulously wealthy (see, for example, Johnson, Jerry or Rauner, Bruce) And of course both groups DELIGHT in seeing minority kids succeed against all odds.

But might there be some other commonality that unites these men of means and vision? It turns out that both the titans of the NFL and the plutocrats behind Education Reform, Inc. share a common dislike for overpaid employees who insist on hanging around for an entire “career,” waiting to collect a pension.

Among the sticking points in the contentions negotiations between the NFL and its referees was the owners insistence that they have more “flexibility” to fire underperforming refs. When I saw this, I understood exactly what the problem was. It turns out that LIFO lifer referees have been ruining America’s favorite pastime just the way LIFO lifer teachers have been widening the achievement gap and destroying the future of an entire generation with their low expectations.  Continue reading →

A New Kind of Public School©

The Leona Group LLC runs a new kind of public school©, which should be obvious by the fact that the company copyrighted the tagline, a new kind of public school©

A school district hands over the keys to a charter operator with some eye-popping numbers

One of the great things about corporate education reform strategies is how well they work. I mean just glancing out of the window of the EduShyster estate I can see that the achievement gap has already narrowed to a small crevasse. Which is why we need to double down and do even more of the things that are already proving so effective: improving schools by closing them down, investing in kid futures (preferably at a rate of 7% or more) and making sure that our schools are producing the kinds of glossy promotional brochures that kids and parents deserve.

But enough with the tinkering around the edges. We need bold, high octane reforms the damage from which may never be undone.That’s why EduShyster was so pleased with the news that a Michigan city has decided to hand over its entire school district to a for-profit charter operator. With the state’s economy still floundering after 10 straight years of job losses, at least somebody here has finally figured out how to make some money off of Michigan’s last great natural resource, it’s children.  Continue reading →