Tag Archives: Public Schools

Is the Common Core a Runaway Train? Is it Unstoppable? Let’s Ask Stephen Krashen

The Common Core train has left the station.  Is it a runaway train?  Is it unstoppable?  

Americans, get ready.  Common Core State Standards have already left the station, according to Stephen Krashen, who was featured in  NABE Weekly eNews, (2012), and the National Association for Bilingual Education,  see S. Krashen, “Poverty is the problem that must be solved: Our schools are not broken” NABE NEWS, 33 (4): 5-8. July/August 2011. 

But who is this Stephen Krashen?  Why should we ask him?  Why not ask Bill Gates?  Or Pearson?  Or David Coleman?

You can read about Krashen here on his website.  He’s an expert in education, unlike Gates, Pearson, or Coleman.  The problem is, Krashen isn’t driving the train.

Gates, Pearson, and Coleman are driving the train, and that’s like having no one at the wheel.  No one that knows what they are doing.  

Is the train unstoppable?  

Are schools really so broken across  America that 45 states have to adopt these untested standards?

What do we do when every American child is put on board a train without a driver?  Do we let that runaway train go until it crashes with all of them on board?  

These are serious questions that someone needs to answer.

Let’s  get a feel for what might be at risk, then pay attention closely as we ask Stephen Krashen, an education expert.

Krashen wrote:  

“It is not too late.  We are frequently told that “the train has already left the station.” It has not, however, arrived at its destination.”

He and NABE have given their permission to print Krashen’s work here.  My photos and comments are added.

Stephen Krashen:

Do Those Who Like the Common Core Know the Facts?   

Posted on NABE Weekly eNews  (National Association for Bilingual Education)

  “According to an Achieve poll, 68% of teachers and 74% of all voters approve of the common core state (sic) standards (either “very favorable” or “favorable”)

[http://www.achieve.org/GrowingAwarenessCCSS].  A poll of Education Next readers showed less enthusiasm, but 40% supported the common core at the time of this writing (either “completely” or “somewhat” supportive) [ http://educationnext.org/ednext-readers-poll-common-core/ ].” ~ Stephen Krashen, NABE Weekly eNews, (2012)

My update, as taken directly from Education Next Poll on Common Core below, includes  the week’s previous poll results, giving US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan a strong  “F”  in job performance.  Here are the results for both polls from their site:   

“Last week we asked:

“What grade would you give Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s job performance?”

The results were as follows:

A – 3%
B – 3%
C – 6%
D – 16 %
F – 72%

This week we want to know your thoughts on the following question:

As you may know, all states are currently deciding whether or not to adopt the Common Core standards in reading and math.  If adopted, these standards would be used to hold the state’s schools accountable for their performance.  Do you support or oppose the adoption of the Common Core standards in your state?

Do you support or oppose the adoption of the Common Core standards in your state? (Poll Closed)

Completely support 17.29%  

Somewhat support 12.62%  

Neither support nor oppose 3.97%  

Somewhat oppose 12.38%  

Completely oppose 53.74%  ”  ~  Education Next Reader’s Poll: Common Core(2012)

Yes, you read that right!  53.74% completely oppose the Common Core State Standards!  Interesting, since implementation of Common Core State Standards is getting started already in 45 states across America!

Stephen Krashen took the time to comment on the Education Next poll.  He said:

 Stephen Krashen says:

07/08/2012 at 12:57 am

“I wonder how the poll results would turn out if all those taking the poll realized that the common core state (sic) standards entails a massive increase in testing (about 20 times NCLB levels) and will be very expensive, at a time when money is very tight. I wonder how the results would be if respondees realized that there is no justification for the common core in the first place: the problem is poverty.” ~ Stephen Krashen, commentsEducation Next Poll: Common Core (2012)

Yes, I wonder how America will feel about the BILLIONS being spent, according to the Pioneer Institute on implementation of the Common Core State Standards?   What if we invested those billions in wrap-around services to directly counter the impacts of poverty instead?

Krashen warns us of a MASSIVE increase in testing, 20 times the testing that NCLB requires as he continues in NABE Weekly eNews:

“I wonder how the poll results would turn out if those taking the poll realized that the common core state (sic) standards mean a massive increase in testing and will be very expensive, at a time when money is very tight. My estimate is that the common core will require about 20 times the amount of testing that NCLB requires, with more subjects and grade levels tested, interim tests, and maybe even pretests in the fall.”  ~ Stephen Krashen, NABE Weekly eNews, (2012)

Just what does all this testing do for children’s learning?  Remember, “testing is not teaching”.  How much time will teachers be spending on teaching with Common Core?  How much excessive testing time goes on before the implementation?  Sounds like a train wreck right around the corner to me.

Are we nuts?  Who is driving this train?   What could communities spend that $16 billion on instead of implementation and testing costs?

Are we assuming that by 20 x MORE testing, we are going to achieve better results?  Who says?  How do we know?

What else does Stephen say this evidence in NABE?  What does he say about the REASON we need Common Core.  Is there a justifiable reason?  What are the real factors devastating some student achievement?  What would  the people of America think if they knew the answers?

 

“I wonder how the results would be if those polled realized that there is no evidence that increased testing will boost achievement, and that there is no justification for the common core in the first place: There is strong evidence that the major reason for low school achievement is poverty.  According to UNICEF (Innocenti Report 10), the US child poverty rate is now 23%, the second highest among 35 “economically advanced” countries.  Poverty has a devastating impact on school performance.”  ~ Stephen KrashenNABE Weekly eNews, (2012)

Obama wants America to “race to the top”.  There’s a “Race to the Top” medal for America.  We have achieved, alright.  We’ve achieved the second highest poverty rating among 35 “economically advanced” countries.  

We get second place and after we spend these billions on implementing Common Core State Standards instead of dealing with the problem of poverty in the first place, maybe we’ll win next year!  First prize!   Maybe it is better for us to start becoming un-advanced economically?

I suppose we should trust Pearson, Gates, and David Coleman and just implement the Common Core without any field testing, huh?  Does America know these standards have not had any field testing?  Will 20 x the testing help children in poverty achieve?

Oh, wait.  There’s more from Krashen.  

 “I wonder how those polled would respond if they knew that the billions to be spent on unnecessary and excessive testing could be used to protect children against the effects of poverty.” ~ Stephen KrashenNABE Weekly eNews, (2012)

 But is it too late?  Is the train of Common Core unstoppable?

He wonders too, what the pollers would have said if they KNEW these billions were being spent on UNNECCESSARY excessive testing.  Is it unnecessary?    Do you know, American parents?  Start asking questions.  Stop the train.

Do these standards really make a difference when in the end, we all group up with different passions, talents, and interests that lead us to different vocations, professions, and lifestyles?  Why try to standardize everyone?  Does it make sense, really?  What if we embraced everyone’s diversity instead?

When was the last time you heard of ANYONE solving any of the world’s REAL problems by taking one of these bubble tests?  

  • Has anyone attributed these bubble tests to saving a life?  
  • Inventing something important for society?  
  • Adding to their success?  
  • Creating happiness?  
  • Establishing credibility in their future?  
  • What happened after you got your diploma?  
  • Did you EVER refer back to those bubble tests in your resume?

But more importantly:  What would happen if we spent these billions on stemming the bleeding on poverty instead?  What kinds of things might REALLY help?  

 

Krashen has more questions too, and points out — when it comes to Common Core, it may not be too late.  Could we stop the train?  Is it unstoppable? 

 “It is not too late.  We are frequently told that “the train has already left the station.” It has not, however, arrived at its destination.

 If the public knew the details about the Common Core, the astonishing amount of testing, the cost, and the lack of evidence that it will work, the train would stop immediately.”

Note: NABE passed a strong resolution opposing the common core standards and tests at the 2012 annual meeting.

For sources, see S. Krashen, “Poverty is the problem that must be solved: Our schools are not broken” NABE NEWS, 33 (4): 5-8. July/August 2011.

 

Krashen inspires us, encourages us, and directs us to stop this train.  

We don’t need Common Core Standards.  

Our schools are not broken.  

We don’t need 20 x the high stakes testing.  

Our schools are not broken.  

We don’t need Value Added Measures [VAM].  

Our schools are not broken.  

We don’t need charter schools to make the rich guys richer.  

Our schools are not broken. 

It’s not too late.  

Stop Common Core.

Stop the poverty train. 

Poverty is a weapon of mass destruction.

I agree with Stephen Krashen.  

Schools are not broken.  

Society is broken.  

Common Core State Standards won’t help poverty.   In fact, it’s $16 billion price tag will likely make it a whole lot worse.  

America, we need to put people like Stephen Krashen behind the wheel.  

Don’t be deceived by their propaganda:  Take the wheel away from the corporations.    Why would we trust them with anything?  $16 Billion?  Our children?  Our schools?  Our teachers?   Why?

Let’s stop this train — the poverty train — before it’s too late.  

Why?

Because these children —- these children in poverty —- these children in our public schools  — they’re real human beings —-  they aren’t numbers.


Behind the Manor of Gate’s Farm: “Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad”

If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” ~ George Orwell

Today, like so many other authors are trying to do, I am exercising my liberty to tell America’s people what they don’t seem to want to hear.

I am telling all of you that YOU are being led by the nose, by none other than “Pig Brother” like sheep to the slaughter in a Charter School Movement that is successfully throwing America’s Constitution out the window.

” Political language. . . is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind .” ~ George Orwell

Our own House of Representatives recently passed H.R. 2218, which will mandate the implementation of  Charter Schools in EVERY state, ignoring our own Constitutional Amendments and laws that have been governing equality and civil rights for years.

The promoters of this bill and the privatization of America’s public schools are using the tried and true tactics of lies and propaganda, much like Orwell’s  Animal Farm (1945).

Bill Gates is using these bankrolled ‘education advocates” to get the public behind his evil plan to monopolize education.

“To the world we all know, which may or may not be the best world possible, once again, springtime had come.

But all the magic of spring was not enough to conceal the misery of Manor Farm.

Once thriving and fruitful, the farm and its’ owner,  Mr. Jones had fallen on evil days.” ~  Animal Farm, (1954)

Behind the Manor of Gate’s Farms:

Where All Animals Are Equal, But Some Animals Are More Equal Than Others

These ‘grassroots’ meetings are being hosted by League of Education Voters, bankrolled by Bill Gates, and offered with slick marketing to gather public support that is effectively stripping our children of the protections they need under Federal and State laws.

“Every Sunday, Snowball and Napoleon lead a meeting of all the animals in the big barn. The pigs are the most intelligent animals, so they think up resolutions for the other animals to debate.” ~ Animal Farm Summary by Grade Saver

“Soon after, the pigs set up a study-center for themselves in the harness-room. Snowball embarks on various campaigns for social and economic improvement. Napoleon opposes whatever Snowball does. Because most of the animals lack the intelligence to memorize the Seven Commandments, Snowball reduces them to the single maxim, “Four legs good, two legs bad.” The sheep take to chanting this at meetings.

As time goes by, the pigs increase their control over the animals and award themselves increasing privileges. They quell the animals’ questions and protests by threatening Mr. Jones’s return.

During this time, Napoleon also confiscates nine newborn puppies and secludes them in a loft in order to “educate” them.” ~ Animal Farm Summary by Grade Saver

“Charter Schools Good, Public  Schools Bad”

Bill Gates and these brain-washed groups take on the role of creating “Sheeple”  convincing them to give up their rights, to take away the rights of others, all to privatize and  promote the policies and increased privileges for upper-class -white-English-speaking-straight-mostly-Christian-American-born-school-age-children through Charter Schools.

In this post I will EXPOSE League of Education Voters, one of the so-called “Grassroots Education Advocacy Groups” who are propagandizing Charter Schools.

Here you will see the way of the Segregationists:

” The great enemy of clear language is insincerity.”George Orwell

These Charter Schools, and Bill Gate’s own words,  like the words of propaganda used in Orwell’s Animal Farm — are often preaching to us from on high, using the language of ‘choice’, ‘freedom’, and ‘civil rights’ as outlined in my own blog “The White Shadow:  Bill Gates, Charter Schools, and the Evil Twins”.

This re-segregation is repeated more and more across our country, harming the lives of so many of our children, our families, our teachers, and our public schools.

Here is League of Education Voters introductory paragraph of propaganda:

Charter schools are public schools funded by government dollars. They vary from traditional public schools because they are granted “charters” by authorizers and exempt from many of the federal, state, and local laws regulating traditional public schools. Charter schools first appeared in Minnesota in 1992. Today, there are nearly 5,000 charter schools1 operating in 41 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico2

Creating new charter law
For charter schools to be permissible in Washington State, one of three options must be pursued: initiative to the Legislature, initiative to the people, or bill through the Legislature. Given the history of charters in Washington, a successful measure would most likely include a charter cap, focus on academically disadvantaged students, and allow teachers to join the local teachers union.” ~ League of Education Voters

Charter Schools in Louisiana, New York, Chicago, and many other cities/states across America are not held by the same standards being MANDATED by our Federal and State governments.  Through tax payer dollars they are padding their own pockets while they set up their own RULES, much like the animals did in “Animal Farm“.

Here are “Gate’s 5 Rules of Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad” established in many of the US Charter Schools across America that are being treated as if they are  not ‘governed’ by the rule of our own US  Constitution and state constitutions, as well as Brown vs The Board of Education [ironic as it was also established in 1954], Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, American Disability Act, Title I, and more laws that govern all PUBLIC schools.

“Gate’s 5 Rules of Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad”

[Simplified to show the harshness of exclusion by the process of “Selection” – in my humble opinion, a dangerous form of Eugenics]

Rule #1:  Exclusion by RACE:

Common Dreams author Jim Horn wrote recently in his essay:  “Charter Schools:  What Would Dr. King Say?”

For the charter industry to accuse those who advocate for economic and racial diversity in schools of “racial gerrymandering” is a prime example of the iron pot calling the copper kettle black.  The conscious creation of cheap, segregated containment charters for minorities in the northern cities and privileged white flight charter academies in the South and West is not the work of socioeconomic integrationists or the Civil Rights Project.  It is the work of self-labeled bold reformers and disruptors of the “status quo,” whose engrossment in “market solutions” and bringing “efficiency to scale” has left them no less blind to the effects of their amoral enthusiasms than the well-meaning eugenicists who came onto the stage a hundred years ago during another Gilded Age.”

In “Understanding the “New” Racism through the Urban Charter School” by by Hatt-Echeverria, Beth, Jo, Ji-Yeon, these authors write:

“The purpose of this paper is to deconstruct the new racist discourse within an urban charter school. We especially want to focus upon how the new racist discourse as according above to Giroux (1999) relieves Whites, “of any semblance of social responsibility and commitment.” As multiculturalism and political correctness are being taught and encouraged in our society to work against inequality, they are simultaneously being used by some Whites, particularly the middle and upper classes, to separate themselves from the “bad” Whites, whom are largely framed as the working-class and poor. As a result, a White liberal rhetoric has been developed that talks about “diversity” and “democracy” but does not address power and current racial inequities. Consequently, racism becomes defined as an individual act rather than being attributed to institutional policies and structural issues of privilege in our society. Whites who adopt a pseudo-liberal rhetoric of promoting diversity without pushing for the change of institutional or structural issues then define themselves as “innocent” and absolved of their participation in reproducing racial inequities. For example, often racist attitudes and behaviors get attributed to ignorance, which implies that the people did not really know any better. On the contrary, Whites do know about racism in society and are often choosing carelessly to reproduce it rather than work against it (Groves, 2002; Otto, 2002).

By claiming ignorance and/or innocence, White ways of being in the world, values, and beliefs are left unquestioned and without critique.”

Rule #2, Exclusion by Class:

In an excerpt from Part I of  The Piton Study, I have taken information from the introduction:

“Editor’s note: The study excerpted in this issue of The Term Paper was written by Chungmei Lee, a researcher with the Civil Rights Project at Harvard University.

Denver Public Schools have resegregated dramatically by race and socio-economic status since court-ordered busing ended a decade ago, according to a new study commissioned by The Piton Foundation.

The adverse impacts of segregation will continue disproportionately affecting Denver’s low-income, minority students, unless creative measures are taken to foster more integrated schools for all students, the study concludes.

The issue is an important one, the study argues, because schools filled with students of color are almost always high-poverty schools. And a large body of research clearly shows that low-income students perform significantly better in schools that have a mixed-income population.”

In addition, re-segregation by socio-economic status has proven to have detrimental effects on student learning.  Richard Kalenberg reviews James E. Ryan’s book  “Five Miles Away, A World Apart: One City, Two Schools, and the Story of Educational Opportunity in Modern America” in “The Nixon-Obama Compromise”:

“But the various solutions to improve high poverty schools—more money, charter schools, and federal accountability measures—have not worked. Some liberals, frustrated with integration, argued that “we should concentrate on desegregating the money,” as Derrick Bell put it. Yet as Ryan notes, “most city schools spend above the state average” without showing great results. Indeed, a recent Century Foundation study of public schools in Montgomery County, Maryland found that low-income students in low-poverty neighborhoods who attended low-poverty schools significantly outperformed similar students who attended higher-poverty schools, even though those schools spent considerably more on class size, professional development for teachers, and extended learning time.

Ryan concludes: “The truth is that separating the poor and politically powerless in their own schools and districts is antithetical to the idea of equal educational opportunity.”

Napoléon: All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

Jessie: But they’re my babies.
Squealer: If you were thinking clearly, then you would be pleased of the special education that we’re going to give them. You surely don’t want to disadvantage your own puppies. Do you?
Jessie: No. I don’t.
Squealer: Good, well off you go then. ~ Animal Farm, IMDB

Rule #3: Exclusion by Ability:

Bob Sikes, author of a blog “Scathing Purple Musings”recently exposes Florida Governor Rick Scott’s attempt to segregate by propaganda using corrupt scholarships provided by a company called in his blog post titled “With Fraud Already Present, Was A.L.E.C. Involved in Expanding McKay Scholarships to Florida’s Special Needs Kids?”

Sikes tells us a story of corruption based on students who would remain covered by IDEA in public schools, but are being duped by the offer of scholarships in Florida:

“I don’t often use letters to the editor in a blog post, but Loudon, Tennessee’s Joy Pachucki writes something that may be important to Florida families. The expansion of McKay scholarships by Rick Scott and the state’s republican legislators to include any child with an IEP is in its first year. Pachucki writes to the Knoxville News:

Parents of kids in special education beware: Special education is under attack by the GOP across the nation via the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) — a powerful coalition of corporations and right-wing legislators, and viewable on the web site ALEC Exposed.

ALEC has worked out plans to trick families into giving up their federally protected educational benefits in exchange for cheap vouchers that can be used in unregulated, fly-by-night academies.

The best example of this is Florida’s (Jeb Bush) McKay special education scholarship fund, and the best proposed bill is AB110 in Wisconsin.

How does the scam work? “It is predicated on trading on parents’ legitimate frustrations for what their kids are not receiving and then sprinkle magic fairy dust by saying, ‘Here, we’ll give you a voucher and all your frustrations will go away,’” says Jeff Spitzer-Resnick, attorney for Disability Rights Wisconsin (DRW).

What most parents don’t understand is that disabled students who take advantage of special education vouchers forfeit their rights under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). That is, they no longer have a right to a “free, appropriate public education” or the specific services that come along with that.

Additionally, they give up their chance to get school districts to cover the costs of private education, if the local public schools can’t meet their needs. Embedded in IDEA is the ability to either voluntarily or legally force school districts to pay for private schools.

Even if parents don’t believe vouchers siphon off public funds, there is the very strong motivation for running cheap schools for the disabled: test scores that are required by No Child Left Behind.

Unfortunately, some parents begrudge special-needs kids for “sabotaging” their schools’ test scores, as well as for extra therapy and tutoring. It is hard for me to imagine a worse public policy than what ALEC and Republican state legislators are trying to do to mentally and physically disabled children across America with the vouchers. ~ Joy Pachucki, Loudon

An August editorial from the Orlando Sun-Sentinel called on Florida’s republican legislators to reveal their alignment with the American Legislative Council. The Koch brothers funded organization known by the acronym ALEC, was involved in writing anti-union bills in Florida and elsewhere. Loudon seems to feel that ALEC may have been involved in extending McKay similarly.

Parents are being sold a bill of goods. They get hoodwinked into believing that a scholarship/voucher to a privately run school is often a better solution for their special needs child. When they arrive, they often find out that the services that are required under IDEA aren’t provided at the school they have enrolled their child.  A June Miami New Times investigative story detailed significant fraud already existed in McKay scholarships. Yet Scott, the republican-dominated legislature and apparently, ALEC sought to expand McKay despite the potential for special needs kids to be irreparably harmed.”

In Louisiana, where Milton Friedman reveled in the aftermath of his parasitic profits blown in by hurricane Katrina, his new paradigm of private Charter Schools lock out students with special needs and students who do not pass a test, as written about here, “Our Gated Schools: New Orleans is the only city in the nation where neighborhood children do not have a right to attend any of their open-enrollment neighborhood schools” by Raynard Sanders, Ed.D.:

What is so unfortunate for the children and parents is that the charter school model was sold to them as an inclusive entity, when in reality it is an exclusive entity that selects students just like magnet schools or any other private selective admission school. As a result of the BESE board decision, charter schools have become “Gated Public Schools” for thousands of children.

It is also unfortunate that individual donors, the philanthropic community, and foreign countries have given millions of dollars to improve the educational environment of the students with the greatest needs. Instead of following their wishes and living up to that noble commitment, our educational leaders have re-established a “Separate and Unequal” school district. But this time segregation is based on academic ability, not race: yet it is just as damaging to the students caught in “unequal” side of the equation.”

Rule #4:  Exclusion by Religion:

Some legal suits against the use of vouchers for religious Charter Schools are beginning to take root and bear fruit, but shouldn’t this become a national suit as these vouchers clearly appear to violate the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution?

While I make the rule “Christians Only Allowed” to make my point of our country’s majority religion, Christianity is not the only religion jumping on the voucher system band wagon!

Washington Posts’ author Susan Jacoby writes in her “Many charter schools continue to defy church-state separation “:

More than 1.5 million American children now attend charter schools, thanks to a movement asserting that whatever is wrong with American public education can be fixed by what amounts to a semiprivate–publicly funded but privately managed–school enclave within the larger system. Many representatives of both the cultural right and left have signed on to this Charter of Wishful Thinking, which continues to be seen as a panacea for the ills of public schools even though the most comprehensive evaluation of charter schools, by Stanford University’s Center for Education Outcomes, reveals “in unmistakeable terms that, in the aggregate, charter students are not faring as well” in terms of academic performance as students in comparable public schools. Even worse, and equally unmistakable, is the fact that charter school promoters with specific religious and cultural agendas around the country are using every possible means to skirt the First Amendment and obtain public support for private aims….”

A continuing problem–one most evident in schools with strong ties to religion–is the use of charter school funds by unscrupulous founders to provide jobs for relatives and church members. In Texas, which continues to authorize new religious-connected charters, there have been numerous scandals of this nature. In Houston, the Rev. Harold Wilcox was indicted six years ago for embezzling both state and federal funds at a school that held classes in a Baptist church sanctuary. Wilcox paid himself $210,000 annuallly to run the school. Ten years ago, the state investigated Dallas’s Rylie Faith Family Academy and found dozens of family and church members on the payroll. The school supposedly cleaned up its act, and Rylie Faith still operates two charter schools. One can only imagine the bellows of rage from the religious right, which considers teachers’ unions a stand-in for Satan, if similar nepotism was discovered in a public school

It is truly deplorable that both conservative and liberal politicans, from the White House to the state houses, continue to hop aboard the charter school bandwagon without regard for the daily assaults on the separation of church and state–and the concept of civic unity–that these schools represent. Forget about E pluribus unum. That’s so eighteenth century.”

Rule #5: Exclusion by Sexual Orientation:

Due to the lack of regulation of the so called “Public” Charter Schools which are REALLY PRIVATE schools funded by America’s public tax payers, there is a grave concern about the allowance of prejudice towards the LGBT students.

The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Policy Institute completed a study of ISSUES AFFECTING LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL, AND TRANSGENDER YOUTH by Jason Cianciotto and Sean Cahill and in it they conclude:

“The school choice movement is likely to continue to be a presence in the debate on improving public education in the U.S. Ideally, all youth, gay and straight, would be able to receive a first-rate education by attending a public school that is free of any type of violence and harassment. Nonetheless, it would be wrong to ask today’s youth to bear the entire burden of creating the public schools of tomorrow by not acknowledging that
some of today’s public schools are substandard, unsafe, and educationally unsound. For LGBT youth experiencing harassment, progressive charter schools with explicit values
of acceptance may provide a much-needed alternative to their public schools. Charter schools might also provide an opportunity to replicate successful LGBT-supportive
schools like New York City’s Harvey Milk High School. But the decentralized nature of charter school governance leaves them particularly susceptible to homophobic policies.
Given the increasing popularity of the charter school movement, it is important to advocate for the inclusion of LGBT-friendly curricula and policies at all such schools.
Administrators of charter or private schools may simply be unwilling to implement safe schools initiatives that promote tolerance, creating hostile environments for LGBT youth and the children of LGBT families. Even in states with nondiscrimination laws protecting LGBT people, such legislation often exempts private or religious institutions. (372)

Because of these serious limitations, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) warns of the negative impact that school voucher and other privatization programs can have on LGBT youth:
Public money should be spent on improving the nation’s public schools rather than diverted to private institutions that may not be accountable to local educational policies and may not provide equal access or treatment for all students. (373)”

Rule #5:  Exclusion by Language:

In Choice without Equity- Civil Rights Project by Erica Frankenberg, Genevieve Siegal-Hawley, and Jia Wang write:

“In a nation where one-fifth of all children are born into homes where the parents don’t speak English (the vast majority Spanish-speaking), and a tenth of all students are classified as English language learners (ELL) students, basic equity as well as federal civil rights law requires that charter schools welcome and provide needed educational services for this large group of students. There is a shocking lack of basic data on enrollment of ELL students in charter schools, even in the state with by far the largest ELL population, California. Where data is available, it appears that ELL students are seriously underrepresented.  If that is true, it is essential to examine whether or not charters are fulfilling their legal and educational obligations to this very important group of students who experience extremely high dropout rates. The government should act immediately to require this data at the school level from all charter schools, and should investigate evidence of the causes of severe under-representation.”

Clearly our civil rights are being violated daily by the implementation of Charter Schools. 

Clearly the US Constitution and Education Acts have been  taken over by the “Gate’s 5 Rules of Charter Schools Good, Public Schools Bad” .

My questions then become:

  1. On what grounds are our own legislators allowed to throw out the laws of equity under our own Constitution and Education Acts? 
  2. Why haven’t the NAACP, ACLU, and Southern Poverty Law brought suit against the Federal Government and all 50 states who are clearly breaking these laws of our land?
  3. Why don’t we dump Bill Gates like NYC dumped Rupert Murdoch before it is too late?

And finally: Will you stand up for civil rights for ALL children in America? 

Or will you let these Orwellian Corporate Philanthro-PIRATES and our own legislators, our own President, and our own Supreme Courts get by with breaking the law?

Where is the public outrage, the Federal and State lawsuits, and why aren’t union leaders taking on “Pig Brother” in a general strike for the civil rights issue of our era?