2019 Election: Why are all of the Madison School Board seats at-large? (Curious statute words limiting legislation to Madison)

Negassi Tesfamichael m: Why are all of the Madison School Board seats at-large? The answer lies in state law. Tucked into a section of state statutes about how school boards and districts are organized is a requirement that applies directly to MMSD. The requirement says that unified school districts — such as MMSD — “that … Continue reading 2019 Election: Why are all of the Madison School Board seats at-large? (Curious statute words limiting legislation to Madison)

Madison School Board needs Blaska’s voice (2019 election)

Gary L. Kriewald: It appears we are headed toward a School Board election that promises something new: a candidate whose voice will do more than add sound and fury to the liberal echo chamber that is Madison politics. David Blaska has the background, experience and most importantly the courage to expose the abuses and neglect … Continue reading Madison School Board needs Blaska’s voice (2019 election)

2019 Madison School Board Election Result Commentary

David Blaska: I met many people throughout the city (and reconnected with sister Jane). Gratified at the many educators, teaching support staff, and mainstream Democrats who said they voted for me. Another shout-out to liberal downtown Madison blogger Greg Humphrey. That took courage. We started a long overdue conversation in this community. That will continue. … Continue reading 2019 Madison School Board Election Result Commentary

2019 Madison School Board Election: Seat 5 Q&A from the WiSJ

Logan Wroge: What is the most pressing issue facing the Madison School District and how would you address it? Mertz: Trust and accountability. Providing our students with the education they deserve requires repairing the collapses of trust within our schools, and between our families and our schools. We need to exercise respect for one another, … Continue reading 2019 Madison School Board Election: Seat 5 Q&A from the WiSJ

K-12 Governance Diversity: the 2019 Madison School Board Election, Parental Choice and our long term, disastrous reading results

Chris Rickert: Endorsements in this month’s School Board primary from the influential Madison teachers union include one for a candidate who sends her two children to the kind of charter school strongly opposed by the union. Madison Teachers Inc. this week endorsed Ali Muldrow over David Blaska, Laila Borokhim and Albert Bryan for Seat 4; … Continue reading K-12 Governance Diversity: the 2019 Madison School Board Election, Parental Choice and our long term, disastrous reading results

2019 Madison School Board Election: Madison Teachers Union Candidate Questions

Negassi Tesfamichael: Nearly all current candidates for the Madison School Board have started to make their case to voters and potential endorsers as the primary election heats up. That included answering questions from Madison Teachers Inc., the city’s teachers’ union. Nine candidates are running for three seats on the seven-person School Board. MTI executive director … Continue reading 2019 Madison School Board Election: Madison Teachers Union Candidate Questions

Madison Teachers Union and the 2019 school board election: Commentary, Spending and Academic Results

Chris Rickert: The questionnaire also includes several questions about teachers’ ability to have a say in their compensation and working conditions, and asks whether the candidates “support the reinstatement of collective bargaining rights for all public employees (currently prohibited by Act 10)?” Act 10 is the controversial 2011 law passed by Republicans that stripped most … Continue reading Madison Teachers Union and the 2019 school board election: Commentary, Spending and Academic Results

2019 Madison Mayoral Election: Ongoing Disastrous K-12 Reading Result Indifference?

Dean Mosiman: The candidates are focusing on racial and economic inequities and the need for more low-cost housing despite a Soglin initiative supported by the City Council that’s delivered 1,000 lower-cost units. And they are talking about education, health care, transportation, public safety and climate change, especially in the wake of severe flooding that punished … Continue reading 2019 Madison Mayoral Election: Ongoing Disastrous K-12 Reading Result Indifference?

School Board member James Howard not running for re-election (2019)

Negassi Tesfamichael: The three-term School Board member said he is most proud of helping further MMSD’s work on diversity and inclusion. Howard said he wished the School Board could have approved several more major initiatives that he said would have helped students of color. Howard, the only black man on the School Board, is currently … Continue reading School Board member James Howard not running for re-election (2019)

TJ Mertz to run for re-election to Madison School Board (2019)

Negassi Tesfamichael: Mertz said he will look to highlight his record during the campaign, and also talk about building trust and accountability in the Madison Metropolitan School District. “In order for us to provide our students the education they deserve, we need to work to repair the breakdowns of trust we see manifested in the … Continue reading TJ Mertz to run for re-election to Madison School Board (2019)

Russia tells Google not to advertise “illegal” events after election protests

Reuters: Russia’s state communications watchdog has asked Google to stop advertising “illegal mass events” on its YouTube video platform, it said on Sunday. Tens of thousands of Russians staged what observers called the country’s biggest political protest for eight years on Saturday, defying a crackdown to demand free elections to Moscow’s city legislature. Multiple YouTube … Continue reading Russia tells Google not to advertise “illegal” events after election protests

‘Voters are tired of you’: A week after parcel tax defeat, LAUSD parents rail at district leaders during 2019-20 budget hearing

Taylor Swaak: Parents blasted L.A. Unified officials at a school board hearing this week — one even bursting into tears — offering an angry glimpse into the fractured trust between the community and the district just one week after voters overwhelmingly rejected a new parcel tax. Many of the more than 20 speakers at Tuesday’s … Continue reading ‘Voters are tired of you’: A week after parcel tax defeat, LAUSD parents rail at district leaders during 2019-20 budget hearing

2019 gaokao points to focus on hi-tech future

Wang Qi China’s national college entrance examinations, known as the gaokao and also known for its toughness and which determines millions of young people’s destinies every year, concluded on Saturday, showing the country’s determination to nurture creative talent. As usual, the examination questions have become a hot talking point on Chinese social media, but this … Continue reading 2019 gaokao points to focus on hi-tech future

What to expect from the 2019 Madison School Board

Christina Gomez Schmidt: With the spring election over, what should we as a community now expect of the Madison School Board? Its role is to provide consistent leadership and direction that results in every student receiving the best education possible. Genuine collaboration is needed among these seven people to tackle the complex problems in our … Continue reading What to expect from the 2019 Madison School Board

Madison Partnership for Advanced Learning 2019 School Board Candidate Q & A

Christina Gomez Schmidt, via a kind email: In March 2019 after the primary election, we asked each candidate six questions about education issues and Advanced Learning topics. We hope the answers will help voters to better understand candidate viewpoints and how they see Advanced Learning fitting into district priorities. ​ Below are links to their … Continue reading Madison Partnership for Advanced Learning 2019 School Board Candidate Q & A

Election offers rare chance to change risk-averse School Board

James Howard: In a recent Capital Times opinion piece by UW journalism professor Sue Robinson, it was stated that we find ourselves at a moment of racial reckoning, change and evolution. I couldn’t agree more. I want to add my voice to this conversation since I am currently the longest-serving African-American School Board member. I … Continue reading Election offers rare chance to change risk-averse School Board

School Board candidates stake out their positions at 2019 primary forum

Negassi Tesfamichael: The nine candidates in a crowded primary for three seats on the Madison School Board made their case to an audience gathered at Christ Presbyterian Church Tuesday evening. The forum, organized by the Grandparents United for Madison Public Schools, was the first time the candidates shared the stage during the current election cycle. … Continue reading School Board candidates stake out their positions at 2019 primary forum

2019 Candidate Q&A: Madison School Board, Seat 4

Chris Rickert: What is the most pressing issue facing the Madison School District and how would you address it? Blaska: The overly bureaucratic Behavior Education Plan is both symptom and cause. After four years and $15 million, suspensions have declined 15 percent but “behavior incidents” have nearly doubled and the racial disparity remains unmoved. Worse, … Continue reading 2019 Candidate Q&A: Madison School Board, Seat 4

Commentary on a 2019 Madison School Board Candidate Forum

David Blaska: The occasion was a school board candidate forum. An organization named GRUMPS sponsored it. It stands for GRandparents United for Madison Public Schools. Its major domos are former school board members Nan Brien, Anne Arnesen, Barbara Arnold, Arlene Silviera, and Carol Carstensen. We also encountered former board guys Bill Keyes, Bill Clingan, and … Continue reading Commentary on a 2019 Madison School Board Candidate Forum

2019 Madison School Board Candidate Events; Kaleem Caire on Accountability

I’ve added the following audio recordings to the 2019 Madison School Board Candidate page. WORT FM Candidate discussion 2.5.2019 Cris Carusi and Kaleem Caire [mp3 audio] Mr. Caire: “If we don’t reach our benchmarks in five years, they can shut us down”. There is no public school in Madison that has closed because only 7 … Continue reading 2019 Madison School Board Candidate Events; Kaleem Caire on Accountability

Substitute reading for potholes: local elections

Rod Dreher: Stout-hearted Steve McClellan, running for supervisor of Holmes County, Miss., is my new favorite politician. “Holes in the road!” is 2019’s “the rent is too damn high!” In this update, McClellan, who is now wearing a bandanna over his eyes, condemns the injustice of the New Orleans Saints being robbed of their victory … Continue reading Substitute reading for potholes: local elections

Skylar Croy withdrawing from 2019 Madison School Board race, name will still appear on ballot

Negassi Tesfamichael: Madison School Board candidate Skylar Croy said in an interview with the Cap Times Friday that he would suspend his campaign and withdraw from the Seat 3 race, citing personal reasons. Because Croy turned in his verified nomination signatures on Wednesday to the city clerk’s office, the third-year University of Wisconsin law student’s … Continue reading Skylar Croy withdrawing from 2019 Madison School Board race, name will still appear on ballot

Who’s running for Madison School Board (so far)? 2019

Negassi Tesfamichael: The Madison School Board’s general election is still nearly five months away, but candidates have been jumping into the race the past few weeks at a rapid pace. Three seats on the seven-person School Board will be on the ballot this spring, and each seat will be contested. Here’s what you need to … Continue reading Who’s running for Madison School Board (so far)? 2019

Kaleem Caire adds to political diversity in Madison School Board races (2019)

Chris Rickert: Caire, 47, is a Madison native who in 2011 mounted a contentious and ultimately unsuccessful attempt to get the School Board to approve what was initially conceived as an all-male public charter school serving those who have long struggled in Madison’s traditional public schools: poor children and children of color. In an interview, … Continue reading Kaleem Caire adds to political diversity in Madison School Board races (2019)

Cris Carusi announces run for Madison School Board 2019

Negassi Tesfamichael: Carusi, who has been a district parent for more than a decade and was an active parent-teacher organization member, will seek to unseat incumbent School Board member Dean Loumos, who currently holds Seat 3. Carusi ran in the 2017 primary for Seat 6, which opened up after current mayoral candidate Michael Flores decided … Continue reading Cris Carusi announces run for Madison School Board 2019

Ananda Mirilli is running for Madison School Board (2019)

Negassi Tesfamichael:
 A second candidate has announced that she will run for a seat on the Madison School Board this spring.
Ananda Mirilli, who first ran for School Board in 2013, filed paperwork with the city clerk’s office Wednesday announcing she will run for Seat 5, which is currently held by TJ Mertz.
Mirilli finished third in … Continue reading Ananda Mirilli is running for Madison School Board (2019)

Specialized program for Marquette undergraduates with autism disorders gifted $450,000, set to launch fall 2019

Jennifer Walter: The program is one of only a few throughout the country, Van Hecke said. In-school resources for students with autism are required by law for K-12 schooling, but colleges often lack resources for those students looking to pursue higher education. Van Hecke said many of these incoming students often have a lifetime of … Continue reading Specialized program for Marquette undergraduates with autism disorders gifted $450,000, set to launch fall 2019

FOIA, Blogshine Sunday & Madison School Board Election

Freeculture.org sponsored blogshine Sunday, a day when news organizations run stories and editorials in support of public access to government information. The internet has substantially improved citizen’s ability to see who is funding elected officials directly and indirectly. The Madison City Clerk conveniently posts campaign finance information on their website. I took a quick look … Continue reading FOIA, Blogshine Sunday & Madison School Board Election

Meet the people working to kick Chicago out of Illinois

Cindy Dampier: But the current us versus them drive to “divorce” Chicago from the rest of Illinois, while it shares elements with earlier efforts, comes in an era of heightened political conversation in America. More importantly, it’s a direct outgrowth of the stubborn urban-rural divide that underlies many of today’s most divisive social and economic … Continue reading Meet the people working to kick Chicago out of Illinois

Civics: What Really Happened With West Virginia’s Blockchain Voting Experiment?

Yael Grauer: Last year, West Virginia did something no other U.S. state had done in a federal election before: It allowed overseas voters the option to cast absentee ballots for the midterm election via a blockchain-enabled mobile app. According to Voatz, the company West Virginia worked with, 144 individuals from 31 countries successfully submitted ballots … Continue reading Civics: What Really Happened With West Virginia’s Blockchain Voting Experiment?

Tulsi Gabbard, Democratic Presidential Candidate, Sues Google for $50 Million

Tulsi Gabbard: “Google’s arbitrary and capricious treatment of Gabbard’s campaign should raise concerns for policymakers everywhere about the company’s ability to use its dominance to impact political discourse, in a way that interferes with the upcoming 2020 presidential election,” the lawsuit said. Ms. Gabbard and her campaign are seeking an injunction against Google from further … Continue reading Tulsi Gabbard, Democratic Presidential Candidate, Sues Google for $50 Million

Positioning and Promotion: A Vacant Taxpayer Supported Madison School Board Seat

Negassi Tesfamichael: Some observers said the unique vacancy is a chance for a newcomer to serve. “I would really love to see another black mother on the School Board,” said Sabrina Madison, the founder of the Progress Center for Black Women. “Especially a mom who has been advocating for her kid recently around some of … Continue reading Positioning and Promotion: A Vacant Taxpayer Supported Madison School Board Seat

Commentary on The taxpayer supported Madison School Board’s GoVernance Plans: Replacement member and SuperintendenT search

Negassi Tesfamichael: “Given that Mary will not be attending any future meetings, I do feel a sense of urgency in getting this filled,” Reyes said. “I don’t want to move forward through some of the important discussions and decisions we’ll have to make … so i think it is going to be imperative that we … Continue reading Commentary on The taxpayer supported Madison School Board’s GoVernance Plans: Replacement member and SuperintendenT search

We Have Been Harmonised: Life in China’s Surveillance State by Kai Strittmatter – review

John Naughton: We Have Been Harmonised is the most accessible and best informed account we have had to date of China’s transition from what scholars such as Rebecca MacKinnon used to call “networked authoritarianism” to what is now a form of networked totalitarianism. The difference is not merely semantic. An authoritarian regime is relatively limited … Continue reading We Have Been Harmonised: Life in China’s Surveillance State by Kai Strittmatter – review

Commentary in our three branch government systeM

David Blaska: Nichols is in a dither because the Legislature — meeting after the 2018 election in which Democrat Tony Evers defeated Scott Walker — passed legislation curbing the new governor’s powers. (Among other things: to prevent the new governor from rescinding Medicaid work requirements without legislative approval and to withdraw Wisconsin from multi-state lawsuit … Continue reading Commentary in our three branch government systeM

Civics: GEOSTRATEGICALLY MOTIVATED CO-OPTION OF SOCIAL MEDIA

Mika Aaltola: Social media platforms enable a strategically motivated and harmful set of practices that leverage both their scalability and targeting potentials. The wider vulnerabilities of digitalized democracies have been much discussed in connection with election meddling and disinformation campaigning. However, the emphasis here is on the more direct vulnerability of mass spy recruitment. The … Continue reading Civics: GEOSTRATEGICALLY MOTIVATED CO-OPTION OF SOCIAL MEDIA

Self-censorship on Campus Is Bad for Science

Luana Maroja: Similar biological denialism exists about nearly any observed difference between human groups, including those between males and females. Unfortunately, students push back against these phenomena not by using scientific arguments, but by employing an a priori moral commitment to equality, anti-racism, and anti-sexism. They resort to denialism to protect themselves from having to … Continue reading Self-censorship on Campus Is Bad for Science

Madison School Board eyes renewal of several partnerships despite worries of not enough success

Negassi Tesfamichael: “It’s really difficult after all of these years to look and see no academic improvement in outcomes, and it’s not because people aren’t working hard or don’t have the right intentions or all of these things,” said board member Mary Burke. “But I’d like to hear we’re looking at how we reimagine the … Continue reading Madison School Board eyes renewal of several partnerships despite worries of not enough success

Civics: Rural Americans would be serfs if we abolished the Electoral College

Trent England: Now a California millionaire named John Koza is trying to undo this system. He is leading and funding the National Popular Vote campaign. Their plan is to get state governments to ignore how their own citizens vote in presidential elections and instead get them to cast their electoral votes based on the national … Continue reading Civics: Rural Americans would be serfs if we abolished the Electoral College

Civics: manuel was a habitual violator of Illinois’ public records laws and shielded the police from public scrutiny whenever he could

C.J. CIARAMELLA: It’s been quite a day for former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel. The Atlantic announced that Emanuel is coming aboard as a contributing editor to the venerable magazine’s “ideas” section. Meanwhile, ABC News announced it has hired Emanuel as a contributor. All within 48 hours of his leaving office. The former Obama White House … Continue reading Civics: manuel was a habitual violator of Illinois’ public records laws and shielded the police from public scrutiny whenever he could

The Chilean government wants to bring back selective grammar schools

The Economist: Sebastián Piñera, Chile’s current centre-right president, wants to avoid that. He has introduced two bills that would partially undo Ms Bachelet’s reforms. The first would allow some 300 high-achieving schools, including the emblematics, to select pupils on academic merit. Of those, half would have to come from hard-up families. The measure would apply … Continue reading The Chilean government wants to bring back selective grammar schools

Teachers unions look for return on Newsom investment with anti-charter school bills

Mark Bucher: California teachers unions were the biggest donor to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s election campaign last year, giving him $1.2 million taken from teachers’ paychecks in the form of union dues. Now they’re looking for a return on investment with a legislative package that would cripple the growth of their charter school competitors. Assembly Bills … Continue reading Teachers unions look for return on Newsom investment with anti-charter school bills

Jersey City Board Of Education, Owned and Operated by Teacher Union Leaders. A Board Member Speaks Out.

Laura Waters: At that time Matt filed an ethics complaint with the State Ethics Commission. The Commission issued an Advisory Opinion on April 3d. (See the bottom of this post for the full opinion.) Regarding Lorenzo Richardson, the Commission opined that Mr. Richardson may have opted to support the JCEA over the Board and its … Continue reading Jersey City Board Of Education, Owned and Operated by Teacher Union Leaders. A Board Member Speaks Out.

A crack in Madison’s non diverse K-12 governance model: independent charter One City Schools

Logan Wroge: In a previous attempt at a charter school, Caire proposed the Madison Preparatory Academy, which would have served a similar population as One City Schools, but would have been for grades 6-12. The Madison School Board rejected the idea in December 2011. Caire sought to bring his “change-maker” approach to the Madison School … Continue reading A crack in Madison’s non diverse K-12 governance model: independent charter One City Schools

Civics: Donald Trump’s rhetoric is breathtakingly authoritarian, but so far he’s done less than his predecessors to expand executive power.

Gene Healy: Standing on the Shoulders of Tyrants Donald Trump’s rhetoric is breathtakingly authoritarian, but so far he’s done less than his predecessors to expand executive power. Gene Healy from the May 2019 issue – view article in the Digital Edition “I have the absolute right to PARDON myself,” President Donald Trump announced via Twitter … Continue reading Civics: Donald Trump’s rhetoric is breathtakingly authoritarian, but so far he’s done less than his predecessors to expand executive power.

“Strategic Lawfare”, administrative rule making, the administrative state – and reading

Jessie Opoien: WILL’s most likely battle with Evers, Esenberg said, is over administrative rules — a “fight that only a wonk could love.” As Evers seeks to implement policies with a Republican Legislature opposed to most of his goals, he could direct state agencies to implement administrative rules — most of which WILL would be … Continue reading “Strategic Lawfare”, administrative rule making, the administrative state – and reading

Candidates wade through complex issues facing the Madison school board

Jenny Peek: As for charter schools, Blaska says the more the better. “Competition is what made America great,” he says. “My whole pitch is to bring Madison schools back to their former excellence status and we’ve gone the opposite way. We have parents voting with their feet.” Muldrow supports charter schools — like Nuestro Mundo … Continue reading Candidates wade through complex issues facing the Madison school board

Identity politics may win votes but it is hurting black children

David Blaska: Catch Ali Muldrow at 1:22:06 remaining in the video (it only records time remaining, at bottom right). Blaska responds at 1:18:45 remaining. The transcription: Ali Muldrow: “My opponent would like to do all kinds of things to black students: punish them, humiliate them, hurt them, silence them, suspend them, expel them— pretty much … Continue reading Identity politics may win votes but it is hurting black children

K-12 Tax & Spending Climate: Politics, Deficits and Money Printing

Larry Summers: There is widespread frustration with the performance of the economy. Traditional policy approaches are not delivering hoped-for results. A relatively unpopular president is loathed to an unusual extent by a frustrated opposition party that lost the previous presidential election while running a pillar of its establishment. And altered economic conditions have led to … Continue reading K-12 Tax & Spending Climate: Politics, Deficits and Money Printing

How I was Kicked Out of the Society for Classical Studies Annual Meeting

: It seems that the plan is to reduce University course selection to just one subject: Victim Group Studies. Mary Frances Williams is a courageous person. Reading about her experience tells us much about the modern Academy. Here is a long quote about the heart of the matter, but I recommend reading the whole thing … Continue reading How I was Kicked Out of the Society for Classical Studies Annual Meeting

Madison school board’s chickens are roosting

David Blaska: Tony Gallli, dean of the Madison’s broadcast journalists at WKOW-TV27, asked our favorite candidate for Madison School Board Seat #4: Any concerns over using a live feed into the MMSD auditorium Monday evening to satisfy the Open Meetings requirement, as the school board met in a room closed to the public? Blaska answered: … Continue reading Madison school board’s chickens are roosting

Madison School Board moves to closed room after middle school incident sparks outrage

Logan Wroge: Throughout the public comment period, board members faced accusations of racism and white supremacy for not doing enough to improve the school environment for students of color. Brandi Grayson, co-founder of the Young, Gifted and Black Coalition, said black children act out in school because they are “dehumanized every day, all day.” “Because … Continue reading Madison School Board moves to closed room after middle school incident sparks outrage

Wisconsin Governor Evers seeks to freeze voucher school enrollment and suspend charter school expansion

Molly Beck: He said in the Milwaukee program especially, enrollment freezes in private voucher schools would disproportionately affect children of color living in low-income households. “Most of our families don’t have the kind of income where they would have realistic choices,” he said at the time. Under Evers’ proposal, voucher schools also would be banned … Continue reading Wisconsin Governor Evers seeks to freeze voucher school enrollment and suspend charter school expansion

Civics: You Can’t Be A Good Judge If You’re A Christian

Joy Pullman: With six weeks left until election day in Wisconsin’s Supreme Court race, several far-left organizations are using media outlets to amplify a smear campaign against a judge based on his Christianity. Brian Hagedorn, a current Wisconsin Court of Appeals judge and former Scott Walker legal counsel, is being publicly trashed for being on … Continue reading Civics: You Can’t Be A Good Judge If You’re A Christian

Ravenna school board fires superintendent for low student achievement

Justine Lofton: The board’s decision to replace VanLoon came after its performance evaluation of him in December resulted in a score of 2.41 out of 4. A score of 2 means “minimally effective,” while a 3 is “effective.” “Knowing that I’ve had effective or highly effective ratings for the past nine years, yes I was … Continue reading Ravenna school board fires superintendent for low student achievement

India Proposes Chinese-Style Internet Censorship

Vindu Goel: India’s government has proposed giving itself vast new powers to suppress internet content, igniting a heated battle with global technology giants and prompting comparisons to censorship in China. Under the proposed rules, Indian officials could demand that Facebook, Google, Twitter, TikTok and others remove posts or videos that they deem libelous, invasive of … Continue reading India Proposes Chinese-Style Internet Censorship

On cops in Madison schools, Police Chief Koval offers some advice

David Blaska: Notice something? The other candidates for Madison school board are beginning to pretend that they always supported keeping police in our four Madison public high schools. But not one of the other candidates used their personal prestige, put their name to a letter, or braved the social justice bullies at a school board … Continue reading On cops in Madison schools, Police Chief Koval offers some advice

Commentary and Data on Madison’s High School Graduation Data

Simpson Street Free Press: Today, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction released high school graduation data for the 2017-2018 academic year. Madison Metropolitan School District’s 4-year grad rates declined for both black and white students — to 65.6% and 87.8%, respectively. According to the Wisconsin State Journal, district officials “are pleased with the trajectory of … Continue reading Commentary and Data on Madison’s High School Graduation Data

The Problem with Relying on Testing When Assessing Students and Teachers

Amos Roe: What defines a good school? Nearly every report, comparison or analysis on education labors under the assumption that this can be found in some form of test scores. Ever since No Child Left Behind made its debut in 2001, top-down government-funded education has proceeded from one failed experiment to another. Testing is now … Continue reading The Problem with Relying on Testing When Assessing Students and Teachers

Here’s another view of what the research says about Tony Evers’ proposals

Will Flanders: Perhaps the most egregious omissions are in the discussion of school funding and its effect on student outcomes. While the author cites one study – not yet peer-reviewed — the preponderance of evidence for decades has suggested little to no impact of per-student funding on educational achievement. This study, and others like it … Continue reading Here’s another view of what the research says about Tony Evers’ proposals

Madison’s current public school system is broken

Amos Roe, 2019 Madison School Board Candidate: I have been teaching children ages 7-18 for about 35 years. Based on this experience, I think that the MMSD has lost its mind. MMSD currently promotes an aggressive victimization mentality toward children of color. I think this serves as cover for its institutional hostility to opening up … Continue reading Madison’s current public school system is broken

Meet the ‘crazy’ moms saying one of Pa.’s top-rated school districts can’t teach reading

Avi Wolfman-Arent: The small parent rebellion forming in one of Pennsylvania’s wealthiest school districts began at a Starbucks in suburban Chester County. Over coffee, three moms — Kate Mayer, Jamie Lynch, and Wendy Brooks — swapped stories about how their kids struggled to read as they moved through the Tredyffrin/Easttown school district, located about 30 … Continue reading Meet the ‘crazy’ moms saying one of Pa.’s top-rated school districts can’t teach reading

Advocating status quo, non diverse K-12 Madison Schools Governance

Negassi Tesfamichael: MTI cited Carusi’s opposition to voucher and independent charter schools in its endorsement. “Carusi is opposed to vouchers and independent charter schools and strongly believes that we need to continuously work to improve our public schools, rather than support alternatives,” MTI’s endorsement said. Caire’s One City Schools, which expanded from One City Early … Continue reading Advocating status quo, non diverse K-12 Madison Schools Governance

Minnesota’s persistent literacy gap has lawmakers looking for ways to push evidence-based reading instruction

Erin Hinrichs: “Minnesota has a state of emergency regarding literacy. I’m very disappointed with where we’re at right now with the persistent reading success gap between white students and students of color,” he said Wednesday. “We are not making adequate progress, and the future of tens of thousands of our students is seriously at risk … Continue reading Minnesota’s persistent literacy gap has lawmakers looking for ways to push evidence-based reading instruction

UW rejects application for independent Madison charter school

Chris Rickert: According to emails released to the State Journal under the state’s open records law, Superintendent Jennifer Cheatham on Sept. 10 asked her chief of staff, Ricardo Jara, and other front-office officials whether Arbor was “worth trying to stop? Or change somehow? If so, how?” Cheatham expressed the district’s opposition to the school in … Continue reading UW rejects application for independent Madison charter school

“One issue state officials say they have detected as they monitor the effectiveness of the READ Act is that not all teachers are up to date on how best to teach reading.”

Christopher Osher: But districts are free to use their READ Act per-pupil funds on whatever curriculum they want, even on interventions researchers have found ineffective. “Typically, as with any education policy, we’re only given so much authority on what we can tell districts to do and what we monitor for,” Colsman said in an interview … Continue reading “One issue state officials say they have detected as they monitor the effectiveness of the READ Act is that not all teachers are up to date on how best to teach reading.”

deja vu: Madison’s long term, disastrous reading results

Laurie Frost and Heff Henriques: Children who are not proficient readers by fourth grade are four times more likely to drop out of school. Additionally, two-thirds of them will end up in prison or on welfare. Though these dismal trajectories are well known, Madison School District’s reading scores for minority students remain unconscionably low and … Continue reading deja vu: Madison’s long term, disastrous reading results

‘Alternative’ at Madison’s Shabazz City High also means whiter, more affluent

Chris Rickert: In June, after she’d lost her bid for a second term on the board, Moffit emailed district general counsel Matthew Bell and executive director of student services John Harper a copy of a letter sent to a prospective Shabazz student letting the student’s family know that the student hadn’t met the criteria for … Continue reading ‘Alternative’ at Madison’s Shabazz City High also means whiter, more affluent

Effects of range restriction and criterion contamination on differential validity of the SAT by race/ethnicity and sex.

Dahlke, Jeffrey A. Sackett, Paul R. Kuncel, Nathan R.: We illustrate the effects of range restriction and a form of criterion contamination (individual differences in course-taking patterns) on the validity of SAT scores for predicting college academic performance. College data facilitate exploration of differential validity’s determinants because they (a) permit the use multivariate range-restriction corrections … Continue reading Effects of range restriction and criterion contamination on differential validity of the SAT by race/ethnicity and sex.

K-12 Tax and spending growth commentary amidst a time of local assessment growth

Madison’s property tax levy growth: Details, here. Jessie Opoien: Wisconsin voters approved record levels of additional spending on K-12 schools by passing 90 percent of the referendum questions on ballots throughout the state in 2018. More than $2 billion worth of referendum initiatives were approved over the course of the year, according to a report … Continue reading K-12 Tax and spending growth commentary amidst a time of local assessment growth

News Site to Investigate Big Tech, Helped by Craigslist Founder

Nellie Bowles: Now, with a $20 million gift from Craigslist founder Craig Newmark, she and her partner at ProPublica, data journalist Jeff Larson, are starting The Markup, a news site dedicated to investigating technology and its effect on society. Sue Gardner, former head of the Wikimedia Foundation, which hosts Wikipedia, will be The Markup’s executive … Continue reading News Site to Investigate Big Tech, Helped by Craigslist Founder

News Site to Investigate Big Tech, Helped by Craigslist Founder

Nellie Bowles: Now, with a $20 million gift from Craigslist founder Craig Newmark, she and her partner at ProPublica, data journalist Jeff Larson, are starting The Markup, a news site dedicated to investigating technology and its effect on society. Sue Gardner, former head of the Wikimedia Foundation, which hosts Wikipedia, will be The Markup’s executive … Continue reading News Site to Investigate Big Tech, Helped by Craigslist Founder

Gubernatorial Candidate Tony Evers Proposal: Spend 12.3% (10%?) more taxpayer funds on Wisconsin K-12 school districts; while killing substantive reading improvement efforts.

Jessie Opoien: Evers, a Democrat, is asking for $1.4 billion in additional funds for the state’s K-12 schools in the 2019-21 budget. The $15.4 billion request, submitted by Evers on Monday, comes less than two months before Walker and Evers will meet on the ballot — and Evers’ budget letter includes a swipe at the … Continue reading Gubernatorial Candidate Tony Evers Proposal: Spend 12.3% (10%?) more taxpayer funds on Wisconsin K-12 school districts; while killing substantive reading improvement efforts.

Gubernatorial Candidate Tony Evers Proposal: Spend 12.3% more taxpayer funds on Wisconsin K-12 school districts; while killing substantive reading improvement efforts.

Kelly Meyerhofer: Walker proposed $13.7 billion in total state support for public schools for the 2017-19 biennium. That includes about $2.2 billion in property tax credits that are counted as K-12 funding, but don’t go directly into the classroom. Walker’s campaign spokesman Brian Reisinger touched on the record amount in a Saturday statement: “Scott Walker … Continue reading Gubernatorial Candidate Tony Evers Proposal: Spend 12.3% more taxpayer funds on Wisconsin K-12 school districts; while killing substantive reading improvement efforts.

Ontario Says Colleges Must Adopt UChicago Free Speech Principles Or Lose Funding

Euirim Choi: The Ontario government is requiring the province’s publicly funded colleges and universities to develop a public free speech policy that adheres to the Chicago Principles by January 1, 2019. Institutions that fail to meet this requirement may suffer funding cuts. The move fulfills a promise that Ontario premier Doug Ford—a conservative who is … Continue reading Ontario Says Colleges Must Adopt UChicago Free Speech Principles Or Lose Funding

Paul Vallas brings experience, political liabilities to possible Emanuel challenge

Bill Ruthhart, John Byrne and Patrick M. O’Connell: Paul Vallas has spent the better part of the last two weeks fueling speculation that he might launch a bid to challenge Mayor Rahm Emanuel in the February 2019 city election. The former Chicago Public Schools CEO, 2002 Democratic governor candidate and 2014 lieutenant governor candidate certainly … Continue reading Paul Vallas brings experience, political liabilities to possible Emanuel challenge

Jane Jacobs on Transportation, Government Monopolies

The use of “gravy train” to describe public investment will resonate with those readers familiar with Toronto’s disgraced former mayor Rob Ford. Indeed, the general tone of Jacob’s piece – questioning the wisdom of public management of transportation – is more reminiscent of writing from the political right than the political left. As demonstrated frequently … Continue reading Jane Jacobs on Transportation, Government Monopolies

Madison Schools 2016 Property Tax Increase Referendum – Let’s Compare: Madison and Middleton Property Taxes

The Madison School District is considering another property tax increase referendum for the upcoming November election. We’ve long spent more than most districts (“plenty of resources”), despite challenging academic outcomes. I thought it might be useful to revisit the choices homeowners and parents make. I’ve compared two properties, one in Middleton (2015 assessment: $257,500.00) and … Continue reading Madison Schools 2016 Property Tax Increase Referendum – Let’s Compare: Madison and Middleton Property Taxes

School Board Vote on the Studio School Tonight

In the context of the Madison School District’s financial challenges, it’s easy to understand why creating a new program may seem unthinkable. Yet creativity can prove a strong ally in times of adversity. Take the prospect of the latest charter school idea to come before the Madison School Board, and consider these points: As a … Continue reading School Board Vote on the Studio School Tonight