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Archive for the ‘African American Education’ Category

Marching For Jena 6 Justice in Louisiana

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Thursday, September 20, 2007

10:21 AM CDT, September 20, 2007

JENA, La. – In a mile-long procession, tens of thousands of civil rights demonstrators from around the nation marched this morning from the courthouse of this racially embattled town to the schoolyard where nooses were hung from a tree last year as a warning to black students.

Chanting “No justice, no peace,” the black-clad demonstrators walked down quiet residential streets as homeowners somberly watched from their front steps, their arms crossed in front of them.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Civil Rights, Education, Jena, Jena 6, Jena Six, Legal, Louisiana, Public Education, Race, Racism, Sherri Brokaw Dallas ISD, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

New York City Wins 2007 Broad Prize in Education

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Tuesday, September 18, 2007

By ELIZABETH GREEN
Staff Reporter of the Sun
September 18, 2007 updated 10:25 am EDT

New York City has won the nation’s most prestigious prize for urban education, known as the Broad Prize.

The announcement by the Broad Foundation is expected at noon today in Washington, D.C. Mayor Bloomberg, the city schools chancellor, Joel Klein, and the president of the city teachers union, Randi Weingarten, are scheduled to attend the announcement, spokesmen for the leaders said.

The prize was established in 2002 by the Los Angeles philanthropist Eli Broad to honor urban school systems that narrow gaps between racial groups and boost the performance of poor students. It relies heavily on test score data to determine which school systems are named finalists.

A member of the prize’s jury told The New York Sun that he favored the city above the four other finalists because of its sheer size — with 1.1 million students and 1,450 schools, the public school system here is the largest in the nation — and its progress in closing the racial achievement gap.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Broad Foundation, Broad Prize, Education, Education Policy, Education Reform, Eli Broad, High-Stakes Testing, Mayoral Takeovers In Education, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, Race, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

A Conversation About Education

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Conversation About Education

Posted in African American Education, Black Education, Dallas Education, Dallas ISD, Desegregation, DISD, Dr. James Davis, Education, Education Reform, High-Stakes Testing, J. L. Turner Legal Association, Judge Sam Lindsay, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, State Senator Royce West, Supt. Michael Hinojosa, U.S. Supreme Court, Urban Education, Yvonne Ewell Townview Center | Leave a Comment »

Race Cannot Be Ignored In Closing The Achievement Gap In Public Education

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Sunday, September 16, 2007

Narrowing the achievement gap in schools requires acknowledging race, not ignoring it.

September 16, 2007

The achievement gap between African American and Latino students and their white peers is stark and persistent. It has existed for decades, and it’s growing more pronounced. The data refute what would be reassuring explanations. The gaps in reading and math test scores are not due to income disparities, nor are they attributable to parents’ educational levels. The simple fact is that most black and brown children do not do as well in school as most whites.

The data also show, however, that African American and Latino children are excelling in schools scattered throughout California and the nation, suggesting that the achievement gap is not intractable. Rather, there is a profound disconnect between what we say are high expectations for children of color and the quality of education delivered to them in the classroom.

All of which leads to an uncomfortable but important conclusion: If a less-stratified society is desirable, we must be prepared to design educational programs that explicitly take race into account, that address African American and Latino students specifically and that openly recognize that we are not a single society when it comes to the needs of our children.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Colleges, Black Education, Black Investors, Brown v. Board of Education, Civil Rights, Dallas ISD, DISD, Education, Education Policy, Education Reform, High-Stakes Testing, Hispanic, Legal, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, Racism, Supreme Court, Urban Education, War | Leave a Comment »

Prosecutors Say Former Texas Southern University President Priscilla Slade Charged TSU for $100,000 Bar Tab

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Thursday, September 13, 2007

By BRIAN ROGERS
Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle

Ousted TSU President Priscilla Slade racked up a $100,000 bar tab at Scott Gertner’s Skybar and Grille during her tenure and stuck Texas Southern University with the bill, prosecutors said Wednesday.TSU routinely paid for $100 bottles of wine for Slade and drinks for her friends and staff, despite a prohibition at that time on state monies being spent on alcohol, Assistant District Attorney Donna Goode said.

Slade’s former executive assistant, Erica Vallier, said that the rules for purchasing have since changed, but at the time, Slade told her not to worry about the prohibition. She said her boss drank bottles of Far Niente with her friends and staff at expensive bars, such as the Four Seasons bar and the Skybar.

Slade led the historically black university from 1999 to 2005, after being pressed into service from her post as the dean of the business school.

Slade is on trial on charges of misapplication of fiduciary property of more than $200,000, accused of spending school money on personal expenses. If convicted, she faces a punishment ranging from probation to life in prison.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Education, HBC, Historically Black Colleges, Priscilla Slade Trial, Texas Southern University, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

Merit Pay For Teachers Goes To Affluent Schools

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Wednesday, September 12, 2007

SENTINEL SPECIAL REPORT

September 9, 2007

At Palm Lake Elementary, two out of three teachers earned a bonus through Orange County Public Schools’ merit-pay plan.

At Richmond Heights Elementary, the number was zero.

Palm Lake is a predominantly white school in the affluent Dr. Phillips area.

Richmond Heights is a predominantly black school in a poverty-stricken pocket of Orlando.

The two schools illustrate a marked disparity in the distribution of merit bonuses to 3,911 Orange County teachers and administrators uncovered in an Orlando Sentinel analysis of the program.

The Sentinel’s review showed that teachers at predominantly white and affluent schools were twice as likely to get a bonus as teachers from schools that are predominantly black and poor.

It wasn’t supposed to work that way.

Florida education officials promised that imbalances along racial or income lines would not happen under the state’s beleaguered and now-defunct merit-pay program known as Special Teachers Are Rewarded, or STAR. Officials said the best teachers could win a bonus no matter where they worked or what they taught.

“It certainly doesn’t inspire much confidence in the system,” said Mark Pudlow, a spokesman with the Florida Education Association, a teachers union.

Among the Sentinel’s findings:

At Orange County’s 39 predominantly white schools, an average of 27 teachers per school won bonuses. Only two of those schools had a majority of students getting free or reduced-price lunches, an indicator of low-income.

At the 38 predominately black schools, an average of 13 teachers per school won. All of those schools had a majority of students receiving subsidized lunches.

At the 31 schools with a mostly Hispanic population, an average of 20 teachers per school got bonuses. Only three were low-income schools.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Dallas Achieves, Dallas ISD, Democracy, DISD, Education, Education Reform, High-Stakes Testing, Merit Pay, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, Race, Teacher Bonuses, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

Secretary of Education Spellings Highlights No Child Left Behind Reauthorization in Remarks to Members of the Business Coalition for Student Achievement

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Saturday, September 8, 2007

“It’s the euphemisms that kill you in this business.”
–Congressman George Miller, who cloaks all his remarks about NCLB in euphemism.

FOR RELEASE:
September 5, 2007

Contact: Samara Yudof
Casey Ruberg
(202) 401-1576

U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings today delivered remarks on No Child Left Behind to members of the Business Coalition for Student Achievement in Washington, D.C. In No Child Left Behind: Moving Forward, Spellings highlighted how the No Child Left Behind Act is working to raise student achievement and accountability in America’s public schools and discussed the need for Congress to strengthen and reauthorize it this year. Following are her prepared remarks.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Business Coalition for Student Achievement, Education, Education Policy, Education Reform, High-Stakes Testing, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, Race, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

Blacks in Suburbs Failing Md. Exams

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Saturday, September 8, 2007

Poor results at some high schools called surprising

New Town High School students

Students work during an American government class at New Town High in Owings Mills, which has reported poor assessment results. (Sun photo by Chiaki Kawajiri / September 5, 2007)

September 6, 2007

When Maryland’s top school officer proposed that the state back away from its tough high school testing program last week, one reason might have been the troubling performance of some suburban schools.An alarming pattern of failure is surfacing: Minority students, especially African-Americans, are struggling to pass the exams in the suburban classrooms their families had hoped would provide a better education.

“It is a wake-up call to African-Americans in Maryland,” said Dunbar Brooks, president of the state school board and former president of the Baltimore County school board. “For many African-Americans, the mere fact that your child attends a suburban school district does not make academic achievement automatic.”

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Dallas Business, Education, Education Reform, High-Stakes Testing, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, Race, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

New Orleans’ Failed Education Experiment in Privatization

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Monday, September 3, 2007

 

Privatization runs amok in the post-Katrina New Orleans school system.

At his first public meeting before becoming the new superintendent of Louisiana’s Recovery School District (RSD) in late spring 2007, Paul Vallas took questions alongside his sponsor, state Department of Education Superintendent Paul Pastorek (“the two Pauls,” as they have become known). At one point, Vallas was scolded by a member of the audience for referring, as nearly everyone has, to the current state of public education in New Orleans as “an experiment.” The scolder was a white teacher, who reminded the two Pauls that black people might be sensitive to the idea that they were subjects of an “experiment,” what with the memory of the Tuskegee syphilis protocols and other past unpleasantness not yet entirely forgotten.Mismanaged and undersupplied, the Recovery School District resembled, at the end of the 2006-2007 school year, nothing as much as a failed experiment. It consisted of 22 schools, enrolling perhaps 9,500 students, nearly all of them African American. The other 20,000 public school students in the city of New Orleans (my son among them) in the second year after Katrina were scattered among five officially “public” schools, supervised by the elected Orleans Parish Public School Board (NOPS), and 31 charter schools, answerable either to the local school board or to the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE).

Before Katrina, NOPS had been responsible for 130 schools and 65,000 students. Now, each charter school, operating under an agreement with either BESE or NOPS, maintains significant independence under its own board to hire and fire faculty, select curricula, engage vendors, and determine whether current students are meeting criteria to remain in the school, once admitted. For the most part, schools chartered by NOPS have some leeway to establish admission policies; most chartered by BESE do not, being officially “open admission,” though wiggle room for selectivity remains. One significant common denominator between NOPS and BESE charter schools is that teachers serve without the protections once afforded by a union; they can be punished for public speech, fired without review, and, in general, serve without protection from capricious administrative actions or the limited security they enjoyed when tenure rules were in place.

As state legislators wrote the statutes in the fall of 2005 that allowed the state to take over “failing” New Orleans schools following Katrina, there was a widespread notion that every school that reopened in the city would reopen as a charter school. This was an intention expressed publicly by the ailing superintendent of education (Cecil Picard, since deceased and replaced in March by Paul Pastorek), and one widely embraced by the same crowd that had promoted school vouchers and had been historically hostile to the “public” part of public education. But with too few chartering entities stepping forward, a significant number of students remained unable to locate and enroll in either a charter school or any of the five schools remaining under the control of Orleans Parish. (Those five were schools that had not been designated “failing” and also were not swept up by chartering entities. They do have selective admission criteria.) Those students became the responsibility of the Recovery School District that the state legislature devised in 2005, as did the several thousand students who migrated back into the city after the beginning of the 2006-07 school year.

The story of the RSD is, in part, a story of how the idea that public entities (either systems or individuals) were not fit or competent to run public schools came to dominate the reconfiguration of public education in New Orleans. That narrative was combined, of course, with the narrative that only private, market-driven forces can effectively improve school performance and carry on the tasks of public education.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Charter Schools, Education, Education Reform, Mayoral Takeovers In Education, NCLB, New Orleans, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, Race, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

Million Father March – A Push To Bring Dads Into Kids’ School Lives

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Sunday, September 2, 2007

Raleigh: Melvin McNeill, speaks with Shani Galloway, a teacher at Sparc Academy as his daughters look for their desks. McNeill walked his daughters to school as part of the Million Father March.
Jeffery A. Camarati/Special to The Christian Science Monitor


Raleigh, N.C. – It’s Monday morning, and Bryan Harris is walking his three daughters down a path he hasn’t traveled before. This year, he’s broken free of his long hours as a furniture deliveryman to be here on the first day of school, following his three daughters up the cement steps and grass-lined walkway to their classrooms at SPARC Academy, a K-8 charter school here. His two youngest, second-grader Shirley and third-grader Jessica, glance back at him with smiles. His fifth-grader, Ceosa, walks with her head held high.

“I wanted them to know I support what they’re doing,” he says.

Around the country, many African-American men are doing the same. They’re part of a national movement called the Million Father March that encourages people of all races, but particularly black men, to be active in children’s educational lives.

Created four years ago, the Million Father March is sponsored by The Black Star Project, a Chicago group working to build strong students, encourage parental involvement, and improve life in African-American and Latino communities. The goal is to eliminate the racial academic achievement gap, says Black Star Project founder and director Phillip Jackson. One key, he believes, is the commitment of dads.

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Posted in African American, African American Education, Black, Black Education, Dallas ISD, DISD, Education, Education Reform, High-Stakes Testing, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Public Education, The Black Star Project, Trinity River Vote, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »