Educate All Students: Larry Miller's Blog

August 30, 2009

Background on MPS Takeover (part 1)

Filed under: MPS Governance Debate — millerlf @ 7:41 pm

The battle for control of MPS is heating up as the new school year begins and Governor Doyle plans to present the Wisconsin state legislature with an “education package.” At the top of the list will be Doyle’s proposal to give power to Milwaukee’s mayor to appoint the MPS school board.

The framework for the present debates on education is attached to the stimulus money ($4.3 billion) being offered by the Department of Education (Arne Duncan is the Secretary of Education) in a package called “Race to the Top” ( RttT). This money will be rewarded to the winning states when the present education stimulus money runs out in 2011.

States must show a range of benchmarks to be eligible: improved achievement, raised standards, recruitment of effective teachers, turn around of failed schools, and development of data systems. The method for measuring these areas will be expansion of the Bush model of industry-generated, high-stakes standardized tests. This path will continue the devastating culture forcing public schools to teach to the test.

The continuation of neo-conservative policies toward public education will generate the same outcomes as we have now. As a teacher for decades and now a school board member, I know what these policies do to the classroom. We should be offering all students “…a rich and rigorous interdisciplinary curriculum designed to stimulate creative inquiry, intellectual achievement and independent thinking…” — as written in the philosophy statement of Sidwell Friends School, attended by President Obama’s daughters. Instead, urban public schools are forced to offer students regimented hour after hour of test preparation so they can take standardized tests. In many elementary schools, this test-prep regimen is followed by scripted direct instruction.

L Miller

Barrett’s Data Questionable

Filed under: Achievement Gap — millerlf @ 7:35 pm

The only data Mayor Barrett could give us in his op-ed today arguing for mayoral takeover of Milwaukee Public Schools had to do with supposed improvements in the achievement gap in New York Public Schools. The problem is that most of that data has been negated by federal government assessments and the National Assessment of Education Progress. Following is a column from Juan Gonzalez, a writer for the New York Daily News, that sheds light on the New York achievement gap data:

See sidebar “Juan Gonzales on New York Data.”

Jennifer Morales on Mayoral Takeover

Filed under: MPS Governance Debate — millerlf @ 12:39 pm

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Letter on Mayoral Takeover From MICAH

Filed under: MPS Governance Debate — millerlf @ 2:47 am

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August 27, 2009

Read Gwen Moore’s View on MPS Takeover

Filed under: MPS Governance Debate — millerlf @ 4:15 pm
For Immediate Release
(August 25, 2009)
Contact: Marni Goldberg
(202) 593-8574
Moore’s Statement on the Future of Milwaukee Public Schools
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Testing and NCLB

Filed under: Testing Issues — millerlf @ 3:19 pm

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