Join our next Race, Poverty and Education book club featuring Jesse HagopianStop the Ed Tech Juggernaut: Upcoming PAA WebinarThe violent legacy of Chicago’s mass school closingsPAA challenges negative effects of EdTechJOIN US! Here’s how to start a PAA chapter!Every parent and community member should see the Killing Ed filmNPE 2016 conference report
Join our next Race, Poverty and Education book club featuring Jesse Hagopian
Stop the Ed Tech Juggernaut: Upcoming PAA Webinar
The violent legacy of Chicago’s mass school closings
PAA challenges negative effects of EdTech
JOIN US! Here’s how to start a PAA chapter!
Every parent and community member should see the Killing Ed film
NPE 2016 conference report

ESSA draft regulations look a lot like NCLB

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PAA plans to spend some time during our conference reviewing and preparing comments to submit to the US Dept. of Education in response to their draft regulations for implementing the new Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). From what we hear from FairTest, we will need to scrutinize all aspects of these regulations. Here’s a letter they are circulating with details of their concerns:   Dear Friends, The U.S. Department of Education (DoE) has drafted regulations for implementing the accountability provisions …

Registration now open for PAA’s 2016 Leadership Conference

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Meet us in Philly this summer! Parents Across America leaders will be meeting in Philadelphia from July 18-20 for our annual leadership conference. The conference is designed for PAA affiliate and chapter leaders and those considering starting or joining a chapter or affiliate. We’re going to Philadelphia this year instead of our usual Washington DC trip to better honor our founding member, Helen Gym, who is a newly-elected Philly city councilwoman. We’ll gather at the boutique Penns’ View Hotel, just …

Parents challenge PARCC/SBAC test secrecy

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Secret Agentslider

Are they hiding unfair, harmful testing practices? May 19, 2016 The following letter was sent to all members of the US House and Senate education committees: Parents Across America is very concerned about recent threats of legal action by the PARCC testing company* against an anonymous teacher and social media users who shared and discussed parts of a fourth grade PARCC reading selection.** The text was two grade levels above the test-takers’ grade and the questions seemed inappropriately complicated for …

No secrecy for tests used on our children!

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A teacher exposes the unfair levels of difficulty of the PARCC test Copied in below is the original blog post from the Outrage on the Page blog written by an anonymous teacher who offers a detailed and critical analysis of three specific questions on the recent PARCC 4th grade language arts test. Several advocates, including Diane Ravitch and PAA co-founder Leonie Haimson, linked to this post on social media. Diane’s post was hacked and removed; Leonie’s tweets were removed by …

The merry month of May, part 2

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Another way to show appreciation for teachers is to participate in Screen Free Week, an event sponsored by the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC) that starts today. PAA supports this event for many reasons, but first and foremost because we hope to help raise awareness of the misuse and overuse of computer-based programs and testing and the excessive screen time our children are being exposed to in our schools. How do we support teachers when we challenge the take-over …

That merry month of May….

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…when the flowers bloom, the workers march, and the president tries to make everyone happy by proclaiming this week both National Teacher Appreciation Week and National Charter School Week. A Parents Across America appreciation of teachers comes in two forms. The first is below, the second is in the next blog post. PAA Teacher Appreciation Week Contribution #1 (a well-deserved slap at charter schools…): A reminder of a recent charter school scandal uncovered in March by the Chicago Sun-Times, which …

Another parent targeted by Big Testing

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Just how scared is the Big Testing cartel? Scared enough, apparently, to think it makes sense to make “examples” out of parents who speak out against the misuse and overuse of standardized tests. We told you last month about how Heather Hicks, the leader of PAA-Ocean County NJ, became the target of an entire cautionary presentation by the COO of iNACOL (the International Association of K-12 Online Learning) at a Pearson conference. The gist of the presentation was that “these …

What parents want to hear from the candidates about K-12 education

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Parents Across America agrees with recent articles (in Blooomberg Views here and the Nation here for example) that the lack of attention to K-12 education policy in the current election campaign is a major concern, especially given the disappointing results of recent independent national achievement tests which make it clear that years of corporate-driven education “reform” have failed our children. The Nation interview with Jane Sanders, wife of candidate Bernie Sanders, touched on some of PAA’s major concerns. However, we …

“Blended learning” bombshell: NJ mom becomes iNACOL target

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Heather Hicks, leader of our newest PAA chapter, PAA-Ocean County NJ, has just posted a devastating video showing how the chief operating officer of iNACOL (the International Association of K-12 Online Learning) gave a workshop at a Pearson conference focusing on her as the prime example of how parents must be managed so that they don’t get in the way of the blended learning steamroller. Here’s Heather’s story:      As a mother and an elementary special education teacher, I became …

Join PAA at NPE!

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The Network for Public Education conference set for April 16 and 17th in Raleigh, NC, is looking great. The wonderful speaker line up includes Diane Ravitch, Chicago Teachers’ Union president Karen Lewis, Moral Monday founder the Rev. William Barber, Jesse Hagopian, Karran Harper-Royal and others. You can still register here. PAA is presenting an important workshop on Saturday morning, 4/16, at 11:35 am, “Parent Voices on the Impact of Race and Poverty on Educational Opportunity: A Call to Action”. That …