Los Angeles Parents Succeed in Getting Their Middle School Expanded to New High School

Parents at the Julian Nava Academy in South Los Angeles loved their middle school. They worried about their children moving on to a high school where they might get less attention, where the education would not be as good as it had been at Nava Academy. So the parents organized, met with the principal, met with the district administrator, and won permission to open a new high school, called Nava College Preparatory Academy.


 


The school opened this fall, and the parents remain engaged with it. Its first class has 300 students, and it will eventually grow to 1100 students. Note there was no parent trigger, no confrontation between parents and educators. The parents loved the school they had, they wanted more of it, they made their case, and they won.
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog http://ift.tt/1zBzpul

The weekly report on testing from Bob Schaeffer of Fairtest:


FairTest provides these weekly summaries of news clips and other resources as a tool to build the national assessment reform movement. We encourage parents, educators, students, administrators, community organizers, researchers and other allies to draw on the positive initiatives described in these links as models for their own local campaigns.


If you have similar materials to share, please send them to us for possible inclusion in future editions.


Some States Rush to Tie Common Core Tests to Graduation


http://ift.tt/1slIP89


California Rethinks How to Report Test Scores


http://ift.tt/1qAogZY


Colorado Legislators Express Bipartisan Skepticism About Testing at Pre-Session Hearing


http://ift.tt/1slIP8a


Connecticut Working to De-emphasize Testing in School Accountability


http://ift.tt/1qAoeBm


Florida School Boards Association Takes a Stand Against Over Testing


http://ift.tt/1yeKbDu


Text of Florida School Boards Resolution


http://ift.tt/1slIQZI


Opposition Grows to Illinois’ Use of PARCC Common Core Test


http://ift.tt/1yOVeam


Louisiana Political Struggle Over PARRC Testing Continues


http://ift.tt/1G90upL


How Massachusetts Teachers Defeated a Test-Based Evaluation Plan


http://ift.tt/1ERxGl8


New Jersey Parents, Teachers Talk About Opting Out of PARCC Test


http://ift.tt/1qAoeRH


Mom Dares New Jersey Gov. Christie to Defend Common Core Exam After Taking It


http://ift.tt/1yLOLxc


Judging New York’s Education Chancellor By Her Own “Standards”


http://ift.tt/1qAohgo


Ohio’s Harmful Obsession with School Testing


http://ift.tt/1z8onxf


PTA in Oklahoma Calls for End to High-Stakes Testing


http://ift.tt/1slIPoy


Oklahoma PTA Resolutions on Testing


http://ift.tt/1qAoeRK


Dallas, Texas, School Board Responds to Parents Call for Less Focus on Testing


http://ift.tt/1zT8A3D


What Might a Republican Rewrite of “No Child Left Behind” Look Like?


http://ift.tt/1qAohgp


Duncan’s Hammer: Test Scores


http://ift.tt/1slIQZM


National Secondary School Principals Group Criticizes Value-Added Measurement


http://ift.tt/1wEvWfN


First Step to Close Test Score Gap: Reduce Poverty and Segregation


http://ift.tt/1slIRg0


To Fix School Problems: Listen to Experienced Education Experts


http://ift.tt/1qAohgs


Standardized Testing a False Solution to Attacking Educational Racism


http://ift.tt/1slIRg3


Beware of Another Standardized Test: This One on Civics


http://ift.tt/1G4XWL3


Corruption and Cheating Increase with Imposition of School “Accountability” Schemes Says Finnish Expert


http://ift.tt/1pYAE5G


The Test: Why Our Schools Are Obsessed with Standardized Testing — forthcoming book available for pre-order now


http://ift.tt/1slIPoH


Bob Schaeffer, Public Education Director

FairTest: National Center for Fair & Open Testing

office- (239) 395-6773 fax- (239) 395-6779

mobile- (239) 699-0468

web- http://www.fairtest.org
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog http://ift.tt/1qAoeBj

Bad News: K12 Inc Enters the Preschool Market | Diane Ravitch’s blog

Bad News: K12 Inc Enters the Preschool Market

Diane Ravitch's blog

A site to discuss better education for all

Having created a string of low-performing but profitable virtual charter schools, K12 Inc. has announced that it is entering the lucrative preschool market.

This is a new venture for the corporation founded by the Milken brothers. Equity investor Whitney Tilson warned other investors last year against K12, which he compared to the subprime mortgage industry, but the company keeps coming up with new ideas to put children in front of computers and absorb public dollars.

Here is the latest bad news for American children:

http://www.prweb.com/releases/Kindergarten/Embark/prweb10959407.htm

K12 Inc. Launches EmbarK12 Comprehensive, a Kindergarten-Readiness Product; New, Award-Winning Program Gets Children Ages 3 to 5 Ready for Kindergarten

New product aims to fulfill the need for high-quality early learning programs to prepare children for kindergarten and is being made available to consumers and school districts for the first time.

An early learning advantage we can’t afford to miss…

Herndon, VA (PRWEB) July 24, 2013

Industry leader K12 Inc. [NYSE: LRN], is fulfilling the need for high-quality early learning programs through the release of a product aimed at preparing children for kindergarten: EmbarK12 TM Comprehensive. The innovative, research-based, award-winning kindergarten-readiness product has already been introduced in some of the leading national pre-K learning centers. The curriculum is now being made available to consumers and school districts for the first time.

EmbarK12 is an extension of K12 Inc.’s [NYSE: LRN] commitment to offer the most engaging and innovative products and programs to inspire young minds and provide high-caliber, individualized learning options. Development was spearheaded by K12’s Dr. Melissa King, who has more than 35 years of professional experience as an educator, in conjunction with a highly skilled team of developers and designers.

EmbarK12 Comprehensive PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

A truly comprehensive, easy-to-use, all-in-one pre-K program offering both online and offline activities with rich multimedia and hands-on, minds-on engagement for children who are 3 to 5 years of age.

The customizable lesson plans can be tailored to child-specific skills and interests and include more than 450 online activities and more than 750 hands-on activities. There are 18 thematic units, each with intuitive, related content and instructional experiences for language arts, math, science, social studies, art, and music. Examples of themes include: “Family and Friends,” “My Five Senses” and “Looking at Animals.”

The program has already won multiple awards, including the Parents’ Choice Award, Association of Educational Publishers Golden Lamp Award Finalist and Association of Educational Publishers Distinguished Achievement Award.

Parents are encouraged to review “KINDERGARTEN: Is Your Child Ready?” and to play an active role in a highly individualized, early learning process.

Curriculum is aligned with state and national standards and with core principles of early childhood education established by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and Core Knowledge Foundation.

CYBER-SAVVY YOUNGSTERS REALIZING FULL, ACADEMIC POTENTIAL

“Whether your child is thriving in a neighborhood preschool or you’re juggling multiple things and have a youngster who is curious and open to learning in new and different ways at home, EmbarK12 is designed to meet you and your child where you are,” explains Dr. King. “Age 3 to 5 is such a precious time and opportunity. I think we all instinctively know this as parents. Having a program that makes the most of this important window of time is an early learning advantage we can’t afford to miss if we want our children to reach their true academic potential.”

“I’m excited about EmbarK12 because it offers the best content, the best instruction, the best materials and the best design. I’m sure parents will share my enthusiasm when they see how well EmbarK12 can prepare their children for kindergarten,” she added.

“There’s no question young children today are increasingly cyber savvy and engaging products developed with sound learning fundamentals can help prepare the next generation of young students to not just get off on the right foot, but to head into elementary school with a strong foundation and real learning momentum,” explained Dr. Margaret Jorgensen, K12’s Chief Academic Officer. “It could be game-changing for young students who deserve the brightest of futures.”

Many others in the education arena echo the importance of quality pre-K education. Educators across the U.S. have identified kindergarten-readiness as an educational priority, and even the President of the United States has made kindergarten-readiness a national issue. According to the U.S. Department of Education, there is a robust body of evidence and research demonstrating that high-quality, early learning programs help children arrive at kindergarten ready to succeed in school and in life.”

Quicklink: Bad News: K12 Inc Enters the Preschool Market; by Diane Ravitch | OpEdNews

Quicklink: Bad News: K12 Inc Enters the Preschool Market; by Diane Ravitch

Ravitch says : 'Here is the latest bad news for American children: Having created a string of low-performing but profitable virtual charter schools, K12 Inc. has announced that it is entering the lucrative preschool market. Equity investor Whitney Tilson warned other investors last year against K12, which he compared to the subprime mortgage industry, but the company keeps coming up with new ideas to put children in front of computers and absorb public dollars'…. 'According to the U.S. Department of Education, there is a robust body of evidence and research demonstrating that high-quality, early learning programs help children arrive at kindergarten ready to succeed in school and in life' but as this post shows, there are many charlatans and privateers are seeing dollar signs.

Larry Feinberg, who runs the Keystone State Education Coalition of public school advocates, offered the following summary of K12 Inc.’s Agora charter school in Pennsylvania:


Pennsylvania’s Agora Cyber Charter, managed by K12, Inc. never made adequate yearly progress under No Child Left Behind


· In 2006 its AYP status was Warning


· In 2007 its AYP status was School Improvement 1


· In 2008 its AYP status was School Improvement 2


· In 2008 its AYP status was Corrective Action 1


· In 2010 its AYP status was Corrective Action 2 (1st Year)


· In 2011 its AYP status was Corrective Action 2 (2nd Year)


· In 2012 its AYP status was Corrective Action 2 (3rd Year)


·

In 2013 (no more AYP) Agora’s Pennsylvania School Performance Profile score was 48.3 on a 100 point scale; Acting Sec’y of Education Carolyn Dumaresq has indicated that a score of 70 is considered passing.


In addition to never making AYP, Agora’s 2012 graduation rate was 45% while the Philly SD graduation rate was 57%.


http://ift.tt/1w3vq7Y


School Choices: K12 Inc execs taking $2K per student in salary. 8 execs, 75K students, $21M in salaries. 20% of revenue in 8 pockets.


Morningstar Executive Compensation


http://ift.tt/MqeHtW
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog http://ift.tt/1w3vrJ8

Larry Feinberg, who runs the Keystone State Education Coalition of public school advocates, offered the following summary of K12 Inc.’s Agora charter school in Pennsylvania:


Pennsylvania’s Agora Cyber Charter, managed by K12, Inc. never made adequate yearly progress under No Child Left Behind


· In 2006 its AYP status was Warning


· In 2007 its AYP status was School Improvement 1


· In 2008 its AYP status was School Improvement 2


· In 2008 its AYP status was Corrective Action 1


· In 2010 its AYP status was Corrective Action 2 (1st Year)


· In 2011 its AYP status was Corrective Action 2 (2nd Year)


· In 2012 its AYP status was Corrective Action 2 (3rd Year)


·

In 2013 (no more AYP) Agora’s Pennsylvania School Performance Profile score was 48.3 on a 100 point scale; Acting Sec’y of Education Carolyn Dumaresq has indicated that a score of 70 is considered passing.


In addition to never making AYP, Agora’s 2012 graduation rate was 45% while the Philly SD graduation rate was 57%.


http://ift.tt/1w3vq7Y


School Choices: K12 Inc execs taking $2K per student in salary. 8 execs, 75K students, $21M in salaries. 20% of revenue in 8 pockets.


Morningstar Executive Compensation


http://ift.tt/MqeHtW
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog » K12 Inc. http://ift.tt/1w3vrJ8

Here is the weekly Fairtest report on new developments in the public’s efforts to roll back the testing frenzy that has been imposed on our nation’s children by Congress, the Bush administration, and the Obama administration:


Bob Schaeffer of Fairtest writes:


It’s only the middle of September but assessment reformers have already recorded an initial set of “wins” for the new school year: Pittsburgh significantly reduced district-mandated testing, and Florida suspended a controversial statewide reading exam. Building on successes of the recent past, escalating “enough is enough” pressure on federal, state and local policy-makers should produce many more victories in 2014-2015. For a list of questions to ask your district, check out the second item in this week’s collection of clips.


“Testing Reform Victories: The First Wave” — How Much Our Movement Has Already Accomplished


http://ift.tt/1tfSWi4


Key Questions to Ask Your District About School Testing


http://ift.tt/1u8x9a3


Connecticut Should Reduce Student Over-Testing


http://ift.tt/1tfSUGT


Florida Suspends a Controversial Test as Debate Widens Over School Testing


http://ift.tt/XuCP3H


Another Florida School Board Blasts Testing Overkill


http://ift.tt/1u8xb1E


Lift Florida’s Test Obsession Burden


http://ift.tt/1u8xbhT


Floridians Stand Against Testing Excess is Long Overdue


http://ift.tt/1u8x9GN


Georgia Education Association Seeks Major Reduction in Testing


http://ift.tt/1tfSWOR


Kentucky Public Schools Under Siege by So-Called “Reformers”


http://ift.tt/1u8xbi8


Massachusetts Needs Less Testing, More Learning — A Model Letter to the Editor


http://ift.tt/1tfSXCE


Putting Minnesota Test Scores in Context


http://ift.tt/1u8x9GQ


Too Much Testing in New Mexico Schools


http://ift.tt/1u8xbyv


New York Congressman Will File Bill to Cut Federally Mandated Testing in Half


http://ift.tt/1u8xbyz


New York May Slightly Relax Grad Testing Requirements


http://ift.tt/1u8x9H4


New Ohio School Report Cards Show Link Between Poverty and School Performance


http://ift.tt/1tfSX5r


Pittsburgh PA Elementary Schools To Reduce Testing Significantly


http://ift.tt/1u8xbOV


Fewer Exams Means More Hours for Learning


http://ift.tt/1wk6Kug


Parents, Teachers Applaud Pittsburgh’s Cutback in Testing


http://ift.tt/1u8xbOX


In Texas NEA President Calls for Testing Reform


http://ift.tt/1tfSXlX


Introduction to Yong Zhao’s New Book, “Fatal Attraction: America’s Suicidal Quest for Educational Excellence”


http://ift.tt/1qwsWiE


“Teach to the Test” Drives Teachers to Quit


http://ift.tt/1CSAm3K


How Young Is Too Young to be Inundated With Standardized Tests


http://ift.tt/YhG3bF


Good Morning Mission Hill: A Way to Highlight Your Organization’s Work


http://ift.tt/1u8xc5r


National Merit Scholarships Continue to Misuse Tests Scores to Award College Aid


http://ift.tt/1u8x9Xy


Another Large, Public University Adopts Test-Optional Admissions


http://ift.tt/1u8x9XB


Bob Schaeffer, Public Education Director

FairTest: National Center for Fair & Open Testing

office- (239) 395-6773 fax- (239) 395-6779

mobile- (239) 699-0468

web- http://www.fairtest.org
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog http://ift.tt/1tfT0yn

If the issues were not so serious, watching test-and-punish advocates backpedal in the face of the rapidly growing testing resistance movement would be great entertainment. From U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan crying crocodile tears about the impacts of the very policies he advocated, to Rhode Island Commissioner Deborah Grist’s sudden embrace of an even longer suspension of the graduation testing requirements she long defended, to Florida Governor Rick Scott promising a commission to review the testing overkill his political allies imposed (a stalling tactic also adopted by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie), politicians are beginning to wake up to the power of grassroots activism. At the same time, courageous local leaders — such as a Colorado Superintendent, several Florida school committees and the Vermont State Board of Education — are pushing the envelope by calling for a moratorium on standardized testing to allow for development of better assessments.


No question that 2014-2015 is going to be a most exciting school year for assessment reformers as PBS education reporter John Merrow makes clear in his predictions!


Colorado District Superintendent Wants to End Standardized Testing


http://ift.tt/1qCWuWD


Feds Tell Florida: Test English Language Learners in English ASAP


http://ift.tt/1qqN0h1


Palm Beach School Board Considers Opting Out From Florida State Testing


http://ift.tt/1teNUn1


Hundreds Endorse Lee County Opt-Out Petition (now almost 1000 signers)


http://ift.tt/1teNWeG


Florida Lags on ACT . . . Again


http://ift.tt/1teNUn5


Governor Calls for Review of Florida Standardized Testing Policies


http://ift.tt/1teNUn6


Undermining Kindergarten in Illinois, One Test at a Time


http://ift.tt/1qkoWiD


Chicago Teachers Report on How to Organize a Test Boycott


http://ift.tt/1teNUn9


Illinois Super Tells Parents What Matters Most in Education


http://ift.tt/1qkoWyV


New Massachusetts Teachers Union Head: How Tests Are Failing Our Schools


http://ift.tt/1teNWeL


Concerns Grow as New Mexico Shifts to Computerized Testing


http://ift.tt/1teNUnc


New Mexico Teachers Say State Evaluation System Does Not Effectively Measure Performance


http://ift.tt/1qkoYqJ


Why New York State Common Core Test Scores Should Be Ignored


http://ift.tt/1levXTh


Final Opt-Out Numbers Show Movement Jumped in New York City


http://ift.tt/1qkoYqN


Wanted: The Whole Truth About New York State Exams


http://ift.tt/1soLb6z


Rhode Island Commissioner Back Tracks: Now Supports Longer Delay in Grad Test Requirement


http://ift.tt/1teNWeP


Texas Suspends Math Grade Promotion Test Requirement


http://ift.tt/1nk41bL


Vermont Calls on Feds to Overhaul NCLB Testing Policy


http://ift.tt/1teNUDw


See Vermont State Board of Education Resolution


http://ift.tt/1vCiEMT


Vermont Secretary of Education Speaks Out Against Standardized Testing


http://ift.tt/1teNWv6


Federal Stubbornness Falsely Labels Washington Schools as “Failing”


http://ift.tt/1qkoWz6


Parents Want an End to the Testing Obsession


http://ift.tt/1teNUDD


Kindergarten “Sweat Shop” Testing Frenzy Comes Under Fire


http://ift.tt/1pVRIHk


Predictions for the New School Year: Growing Resistance to High-Stakes Testing Tops the List


http://ift.tt/1teNUDI


Duncan Offers States One-Year Postponement on Test-Based Teacher Evaluation


http://ift.tt/1sXJZLe


See FairTest News Release


http://ift.tt/1teNUDL


Administrators Pledge Ethical Treatment of Children Whose Families Choose to Opt Out


http://ift.tt/1qkoYHa


Report Urges Fewer Tests, More Peer Review


http://ift.tt/1teNUDM


Education News: Groundhog Day All Over Again?


http://ift.tt/1qkoWzc


Standardized Testing Is Really Great: Two Poems


http://ift.tt/1qkoWPs


Public TV Airs Two Videos Showing Excellent Schools Using Healthy Assessment (check websites for dates, times and channels)


http://ift.tt/1teNUU3


http://ift.tt/1teNUU4


Bob Schaeffer, Public Education Director

FairTest: National Center for Fair & Open Testing


office- (239) 395-6773 fax- (239) 395-6779

mobile- (239) 696-0468

web- http://www.fairtest.org
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog http://ift.tt/1qkoYaa

Important Primary Election for Georgia State Superintendent On July 22

Georgia has an important run-off for State Superintendent of Education in the Democratic Party on July 22. If you care about the future of public education in Georgia, please vote.


Valarie Wilson came in first in the primary, with 32% of the vote. The runner-up, Alisha Thomas Morgan, received 26%.


The Network for Public Education has endorsed Valarie Wilson, a strong supporter of public education. In reviewing her list of contributors, it appears that almost all of them live in Georgia. Wilson’s total contributions, after taking out loans, was $178,147. Of those, $174,572 came from supporters who live in Georgia; $3,575–or 2%-came from outside Georgia.


Valarie was elected to the local school board in Decatur in 2002 and served as its president from 2005-2011. She was elected president of the Georgia School Boards Association in 2012-13.


Her opponent, Alisha Thomas Morgan, has been endorsed by the corporate reformers, the hedge fund managers and billionaires, who support privatization, charters and vouchers.


On Morgan’s website, she boasts that she has been endorsed by the Wall Street hedge fund managers group, Democrats for Education Reform; by the voucher-loving American Federation for Children (Betsy DeVos of the Amway fortune, sister of Erik Prince of the infamous Blackwater security company); by Michelle Rhee’s StudentsFirst; by billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s daughter Emma Bloomberg; by billionaire Eli Broad; and by Frank Biden, brother of Joe Biden, who manages a for-profit charter corporation in Florida called Mavericks.


Most of Morgan’s funding comes from out-of-state donors. Morgan has collected $21,203 from citizens of Georgia. She has collected $70,675 from out-of-state donors.


Here is the list of outside donors to Morgan.




LastName


FirstName


Cash_Amount




Aluise


Joseph


500




American Federation for Children Action Fund-Georgia PAC





3700




Arnold


John


1500




Bender Benefits & Insurance





3000




Bing


Jonathan


250




Blew


James


500




Bloomberg


Emma


500




Bloomberg


Emma


500




Bloomberg


Michael


3700




Bloomberg


Michael


6300




Bradley


Katherine


1000




Bradley


Sean


200




Broad


Eli


3700




Broad


Eli


6300




Conforme


Veronica


250




Cunningham


Peter


200




Deane-Williams


Barbara


150




DeLaski


Kathleen


500




DeVos Jr.


Richard & Elisabeth


6300




Dostart


Steve


250




Dostart


Steve


250




Duncan


Damon


250




Elisa


Louis


100




Elisa


Louis


100




Ferguson


Wilkie


250




Fields


Jarett


75




Fisher


John


1000




Francis


Gregory


200




Fuller


Howard


250




Fuller


Howard


250




Gaal


Michael


250




Gordon


Scott


250




Groff


Peter


250




Groff


Peter


250




Hilton


Adriel


100




Hilton


Adriel


100




Holifield


Johnathan


250




Huizenga


J.C.


2500




Jackson-King


Carolyn


150




Johnson


Alex


250




K12 Management Inc.





2000




Kihn


Paul


250




Kihn


Paul


100




Kirtley


John


3700




Ledre Jr.


Reo


200




Leslie


Kent


200




Lomax


Michael


250




Martin


Rayne


100




McGriff


Deborah


250




Nellons-Paige


Stephanie


500




payton jr


tony


150




Peabody


Malcolm


500




Powell Jobs


Laurene


6300




Rees


Nina


500




Revenaugh


Martha


500




Ritchie


Daniel


3000




Rudall


David


250




Russell


Jerome


500




Schilling


John


150




The Alex’s Group LLC





150




Thiry


Kent


4300




Thompson


Elizabeth


100




Thompson


Elizabeth


100




Tilson


Whitney


250




Total





70675
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog http://ift.tt/1rmPjae

This prize-winning story by investigative reporter Colin Woodard follows the money trail in Maine, as Governor Paul LePage seeks to make a name for himself in the world of digital learning. It was originally published two years ago, but remains relevant. Woodard dug through more than 1,000 documents that he obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, and his story won the George Polk award.
















via Diane Ravitch’s blog » K12 Inc. http://ift.tt/1mLqCAR