Position paper: Why PAA opposes mass school closingsPAA-New Orleans chapter protests charter school discrimination against disabled studentsParent “choice”: Schools choose – students loseParents VotePAA marchers begin the SOS March July 2011Founders speak at PAA kickoff forum, Feb. 8, 2011
Position paper: Why PAA opposes mass school closings
PAA-New Orleans chapter protests charter school discrimination against disabled students
Parent “choice”: Schools choose – students lose
Parents Vote
PAA marchers begin the SOS March July 2011
Founders speak at PAA kickoff forum, Feb. 8, 2011

Save Our Schools NJ: reform our broken charter school law now!

Posted on by leoniehaimson

From SOS New Jersey, an affiliate of Parents Across America, working to reform their state’s charter school laws.  These principles should be followed in any state. Reform New Jersey’s Broken Charter School Law Save Our Schools NJ is working with lawmakers to reform three significant problems with the existing charter school law Local communities have no control over the opening of new charter schools in their districts, even though the communities must pay to run those charter schools and the …

Take action! Listen to Diane

Posted on by pureparents

For Public Schools Action Tuesday (PSAT) today, please read and follow the directions included in this article which was posted on dianeravitch.com over the weekend: A Letter to My Friends and Readers any people have asked what they can do to try to change the conditions and misguided policies that I describe in my book. Wherever I go, the same question comes up: What can we do? How do we stop these bad policies and programs? Whether they are parents, …

Monty Neill on the choice of the frying pan or the fire: NCLB vs. RTTT

Posted on by leoniehaimson

Cross -posted at the National Journal . If US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has his way, states will have to “choose” between the frying pan of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and the fire of Race to the Top (RTTT). Or so it seems from his vague language. The frying pan: Under NCLB, ever more schools will face “in need of improvement” (INOI) status and then ever-escalating sanctions as they fail to make “adequate yearly progress.” Once in that …

Lance Hill on the way the privatizers have hijacked the word "reform"

Posted on by leoniehaimson

See Lance Hill’s insightful comments below.  I have long believed that we need to reclaim that word “reform” for ourselves; we at PAA say we support “progressive education reform.”  and oppose “corporate reform” based on privatization, competition, and high-stakes testing. The people at the GEM, the Grassroots Education Movement, who made the new film The  Inconvenient Truth Behind Waiting for Superman, call themselves the “real reformers.” . I am starting to use the hashtag  #realreform when I tweet, and hope …

Presentation to Department of Ed public meeting on assessment

Posted on by pureparents

The June 10 USDE “Automated Scoring of Summative Assessments” public meeting in Chicago was eerily like a Pentagon briefing for vendors on the latest weapons technology. USDE’s Ann Whelan, who chaired the meeting, actually wrapped up the day by saying, “We need to be bold and move the industry forward.” I wondered if we should all salute as she walked out. The meeting was about creating computer-based and computer-scored assessments, a topic that seemed to be over the heads of …

Helen Gym: Reformers, please listen to what parents want for schools

Posted on by admin

Helen Gym is a Philadelphia public school parent and writer and founder of Parents United for Public Education, the newest affiliate of Parents Across America. This essay is cross posted at the CNN blog. Many of those who are driving education policy today are fixed on a certain set of numbers and measurements that we’re told are the way to gauge a quality school. But as a parent, that’s not really what matters to me about my daughter’s education. I …

PAA in the news: questions about charter schools & Broad Foundation

Posted on by leoniehaimson

Two major stories today feature the work of Parents Across America and, in particular, one of our brilliant Oakland  members, Sharon Higgins. Sharon writes and researches three blogs, The Perimeter Primate, Charter School Scandals, and The Broad Report. Sharon provides cutting edge information and exposes scandals in the corporate education reform movement including charter schools and the Broad Foundation (from whose leadership academy our new CEO, JC Brizard, is a graduate). Sharon’s work is featured in an article posted in …

Stealth U.S. charter network linked to Gulen raises concerns

Posted on by leoniehaimson

The New York Times this week published an investigative report about the financial practices of a sizable group of Texas charter schools being operated by the followers of Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish Islamic religious leader “whose devotees have built a worldwide religious, social and nationalistic movement in his name.” While the New York Times focused on Texas schools, members of the Gulen movement have actually started schools all over the United States – approximately 120 charter schools in 25 states, …

Support the Student Bill of Rights and an equitable chance to learn!

Posted on by leoniehaimson

Below is a press release sent yesterday from the office of Congressman Chaka Fattah, Second District of Pennsylvania, about a letter many of our organizations sent to his office in support of his reintroduction of the Student Bill of Rights Act, posted here: The Student Bill of Rights, H.R. 129. Rep. Fattah has been a long champion of the federal government’s working with states to address very serious resource disparities between school districts that mean some children are provided the …

The life-long effect of Kindergarten cut-off dates

Posted on by leoniehaimson

Cross-posted at NYC Public School Parents. This NY Times article talks about how the increased academic pressure on Kindergarten students is leading many states to move their cut off dates earlier in the year. NYC public schools continue to have among the latest cut offs for Kindergarten, December 31, according to the allied chart. New York City private school cut off dates are much earlier; and it is very common when a child is applying to a private school, especially …