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

Warning to Michigan parents and teachers about John Covington

Posted on by leoniehaimson

An open message from a Kansas City teacher to the parents and  teachers of Michigan about John Covington’s reign of terror when he was superintendent of  her district’s schools. Covington drastically increased the class sizes of certain KC teachers following a model suggested by Bill Gates; this experiment ended, thankfully, when he left the district. Covington was recently appointed the head of Michigan’s new Education Achievement Authority to run that state’s struggling schools, with the power to cancel union contracts …

Teach for America Displays Taken Down in Portland and Seattle

Posted on by DoraTaylor

According to a previous post on the Seattle Education blog, Parents Across America, Seattle: Part of Protest at Apple Store: Steve Jobs with Apple has gotten on the ed reform bandwagon and is offering free iPads to Teach for America recruits but of course none to real teachers who have teaching experience, degrees in education and have devoted their lives to their school communities.  Nope, this is for the TFA, Inc. recruits with five weeks of training to teach to …

An open letter to Michael Moore from Sharon Higgins

Posted on by leoniehaimson

Dear Mr. Moore, I am one of the people who will have the opportunity to see you at your UC Berkeley book event this Saturday night. It’s going to be great to hear you speak! Yesterday, as I listed to your interview on NPR’s Talk of the Nation, I was happy to hear how you have considered doing a documentary about the American school system. I’d like to add my voice to the chorus of people who make that request …

Parent Involvement

Posted on by pagrundy

This week, Parenting Magazine is sponsoring a blog-a-thon, in which parents from across the country, especially delegates to the 2010 and 2011 Mom Congresses, write open letters to their kids about what they’re going to do for education this upcoming school year. This letter was written by PAA co-founder Pamela Grundy, who was the 2011 North Carolina delegate to Mom Congress. Pamela is spending the fall in Shanghai, China, with husband Peter Wong (a visiting scholar at Tongji University) and …

Obama's speech to Congress; so why am I skeptical?

Posted on by leoniehaimson

Obama’s speech last week to Congress has been described as a “wake up call”—with its aggressive and ambitious proposals to boost spending on education – including $30 billion to avoid further teacher layoffs, and $30 billion more to renovate school facilities.  These funds that are desperately needed as more than 2/3 of states and districts are suffering big cuts and increases in class size this fall-  with nearly a quarter million fewer school staff employed in June 2011 compared to …

US House to vote on bad charter bill today

Posted on by pureparents

Please call your congressman today and ask him/her to vote NO on HR 2218 (see press release below). This bill is called the Empowering Parents Through Quality Charter Schools bill, but we believe that it only serves to empower charter school operators and not parents or students. Look at the list of endorsers if you doubt who is behind this. Parents Across America has taken a position against HR 2218. Because the vote is happening today, you need to keep …

Students choke on "reform" when lunch is 10 minutes long

Posted on by CarolineSF

So-called education “reform” means teaching to the test, narrowing curriculum — and truncating lunch to 10 or 15 minutes. School food advocates object in a post on the popular The Lunch Tray blog. As I explained in a comment on the blog, educators aren’t the ones who think insanely short lunches are a good idea. As this commentary mentions, they are under intense (seriously intense, crushing) pressure from the non-educators who control our nation’s education policy. The truncated lunches are …

PSAT for 9-6-11: Commit to valuing all children

Posted on by pureparents

Today is the traditional first day of school across the US. That tradition has eroded in many places due to so-called year-round school schedules, experiments like Paul Vallas’s short-term effort to game state tests by adding a few weeks in at the beginning of the school year, and a host of local variables. Another tradition that seems to have eroded (if it ever truly existed) is that of valuing all children. These days, politicians and media types are boldly yammering …

Why More Standardized Tests Won't Improve Education

Posted on by pagrundy

American students are spending growing amounts of time preparing for and taking high-stakes standardized tests. The federal government requires students to take annual state tests in math, English, science and social studies. Some states and districts have gone even further, requiring standardized tests for every subject, including art, music, journalism and physical education. Test scores are used to bar students from moving from one grade to another, to determine teacher and administrator pay, and to label schools as “failing” – …

Next target of ed "reformers" – democracy

Posted on by pureparents

“Reformers” next target: “one-size-fits-all” democracy Now that they’ve had some success destroying public education, the school reform privateers are setting their sights on something even more precious and fundamental to our nation – our democracy. You see, democracy is “messy” and “one-size-fits-all” and has a pesky habit of getting in the way of even more mega profits and oligarchic* control, which the Bill Gateses and Eli Broads feel is their due. Last week, former Chicago Tribune honcho James Warren wrote …