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DeVos Confirmed
Old 02-07-2017, 11:07 AM
 
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I'm terrified.


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A Sad Day for America's Public Schools
Old 02-07-2017, 11:11 AM
 
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Very sad day...those who believe in public schools will have to show up at the ballot box at the next mid-term elections.
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Old 02-07-2017, 11:31 AM
 
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I'm so afraid for the future of public education. I can't even comprehend what will happen to our children and to us as teachers. It's simply unimaginable.
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Old 02-07-2017, 11:43 AM
 
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You surely know this is the wrong board for this post.

I think many children trapped in low-performing schools already know that school choice is a great thing and are looking forward to finally having that choice themselves. It makes no sense for people to be so opposed to allowing those who can't afford choice to have a choice. It's good to see that some people are able to fight for our children and try something new even when their name gets drug through the mud.
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Old 02-07-2017, 12:41 PM
 
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0123456, as a person whose career has been spent in low performing schools by choice, I can tell you without doubt that choice will not fix this problem. My urban school receives 5+ charter bounceback students per year. Their parents choose to leave, the charters suspend or counsel them out, and we are REQUIRED to take them back. There simply aren't enough high-functioning 'chosen' schools that keep behavior problems, very low level English speakers, kids who have experienced trauma, and kids with academic/social/emotional special needs. They come back. Which means that public education, which us supposed to be for everyone, turns into a tiered system where the true public schools are the lowest tier.

In addition, the market will simply adjust and the people who were paying $10,000 per year for private school will now be paying $10,000 + $4,000 or however much the voucher is. Tuition will just go up to include the voucher, because they still CAN charge that much because the families have already shown they can afford it. Which means the poorer kids will not actually have access to these wealthier schools.

Free market theory doesn't work when they market isn't actually free. Education is compulsory. There will always have to be a safety net for the kids who aren't competitive (behavior problems, academic/behavioral/emotional special needs, language learners, kids dealing with the deep effects of poverty like drug/violence exposure and foster care and uneducated parents). There will always be parents who can't or won't advocate for their kids, but those kids should still have access to high quality education even without an application. Those are the kids I work with, and due to the factors I've listed, they won't actually get a choice.


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Old 02-07-2017, 01:53 PM
 
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I have many concerns. One of them is summarized by NASP here:
Quote:
During the hearing, Ms. DeVos said states should decide whether schools should be required to meet special education requirements mandated by IDEA, which signals either a lack of commitment to or a lack of understanding of the federal protections and guaranteed services that IDEA provides to all students with disabilities. States that take federal funding are required to uphold the mandates outlined in IDEA, and they do not get to choose which mandates to uphold and which ones to ignore. When further pressed on this issue, Ms. DeVos said that she may have confused this law with something else. NASP has concerns about the possibility a Secretary of Education may not fully understand one of the major civil rights laws that governs our public education system.
https://www.nasponline.org/research-...blic-education
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Old 02-07-2017, 02:21 PM
 
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GraceKrispy - that whole thing scares the bejeezus out of me. When I watched the hearing a week or so ago, I was SCREAMING in my house (they could probably hear me in the next town!). As a parent who is constantly worried about my son's future ALREADY, this is doing nothing to make those fears calm whatsoever. I'm sickened and scared. Programs like community outreach for ESE students are already being pulled from middle/high schools in my area. What will become of things now?
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Old 02-07-2017, 02:34 PM
 
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And today when discussing where the federal money for vouchers would come from, one pundit (on one of the cable news networks) said that they could use the Title One money. Another pundit disagreed and gave a pretty good explanation of Title One. But, the first guy said that it the money would be used for the same kids so it would be good.

And I get really upset when they keep saying public charter schools when they mean vouchers for for-profit schools.
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Agree!
Old 02-07-2017, 03:13 PM
 
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It is really horrifying. I taught at a cyber school and it was a joke! Most of the students never logged in, but the school was getting money taken away from public schools. Then, these kids would flunk out and go BACK to the public schools after sitting home for a year. I've never been impressed with the academics of a kid coming from a charter, cyber, or homeschool background. I shudder to think that more public schools will be privatized and turned into a business.

Now, I have been impressed with students from two wealthier public districts near ours. Also, I am always satisfied with the education level of students who went to the Catholic school I attended. However, my parents and the church paid for that. We had to buy all of our own religious books and materials. I really don't think that tax money should go into religious schools.

I really don't know what is going to happen. Our public school is already underfunded. I wrote every letter, email, and post I could to stop this. It just wasn't enough. I also feel terrified.
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Old 02-07-2017, 03:45 PM
 
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I'm really worried for kids with special needs, especially those with significant/severe disabilities. Charter schools are NOT equipped to teach them. If a lot of general ed kids jump to charters, that will leave public schools as underfunded dumping ground for sped. That's NOT ok.


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Well that is a whole heap of gross...
Old 02-07-2017, 03:45 PM
 
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The uber pricey top tier private school will price out the trash (I'm considered trash per their standards), by tacking a few more grand so the vouchers will be worthless. They will make parental requirements that if you are working three jobs you'll never be able to do.

Vouchers sound great but if everyone fiddles with requirements, hikes tuition up just out of your reach, it's all a shell game. Oh you can go anywhere sounds great in theory, but if there is "no space", you are still back at square one. People in million dollar houses don't want the kid who's mom works at Dollar General next to their kid. Private or Public. Doesn't matter.

Betsy also just spurred on a whole lot of fence sitters to do early retirement. I found out 4 of the teachers at DD school are peacing out this year.
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Agree
Old 02-07-2017, 03:49 PM
 
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Choice will help only those who can afford to pay funds to supplement tuitions. Poor children from homes without additional means or parents without cars who can transport them to these new, fabulous schools, will have no choice at all.

We have some very excellent private schools in our area, and one very good charter, but I'm middle class, and even with a voucher, I can't afford to send my kids there. Those from lower income homes might get scholarships, but they are few and far between. They cannot serve the numbers of children that our public schools can, at least not in my city. Very few low income folks are going to get any "tax advantages" because they are not in a high tax bracket.

I think it's a stinky deal. I wasn't a fan of Arnie Duncan either..... he wasn't much better, but De Vos has a group of fellow cabinet members who are Trump loyalists, and she will gladly push their agenda with little regard to how it's going to effect schools, students, or teachers. They are quite anti-union, as well. It will take some time to dismantle public schools. BUT, we will need to remain vigilant.
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Old 02-07-2017, 04:38 PM
 
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LastMinute123, I completely agree. The day that charter schools are required to keep the students that enroll in them and are held to the same standards that public schools are (i.e. servicing ALL students not just the ones they want to service), then I will be wiling to think about it.
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Old 02-07-2017, 05:00 PM
 
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Cruxian, YES. And I'll add that they need to be open-enrollment with one application, not a separate one. When the parent signs the kid up for public school, the kids get assigned to the charter as part of the lottery *whether or not they opt-in.*** Similar demographics, similar suspension/expulsion rates.
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Old 02-07-2017, 05:33 PM
 
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Off topic here, but in this terrifying new situation, I was reminded, while reading an above post, of an old Peanuts cartoon. It had Lucy, I believe, saying "Just say no to drug" (referencing Nancy Reagan's manta) with the correction of "dragged"- all I can say is it's been a long day! DeVos is a travesty for education and I'm focused on grammar. Time to go to bed.
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Well, I'm glad people are finally awake!
Old 02-07-2017, 06:28 PM
 
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Not a DeVos fan here. But where were you all when Arne Duncan and Barack Obama were bribing folks with federal dollars in trade for teacher tenure and stringent teacher evaluations tied to test scores?
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Old 02-07-2017, 07:28 PM
 
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Quote:
But where were you all when Arne Duncan and Barack Obama were bribing folks with federal dollars in trade for teacher tenure and stringent teacher evaluations tied to test scores?
Very unhappy about that at that point, and I saw the same type of complaining happening on PT about that one.
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Old 02-07-2017, 07:43 PM
 
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PrivateEyes, disapproving of the current job holder doesn't automatically mean approval if the previous one. I think we just went out of the frying pan and into the fire.

It might not matter soon anyway, because some representatives are trying to demolish the entire federal Department of Education: http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-actio...t-of-education
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Old 02-07-2017, 08:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Not a DeVos fan here. But where were you all when Arne Duncan and Barack Obama were bribing folks with federal dollars in trade for teacher tenure and stringent teacher evaluations tied to test scores?
I was writing letters and making phone calls then, too. Because LastMinute is right - disapproval of one doesn't mean total acceptance of the previous.
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Duncan - awful too
Old 02-08-2017, 04:16 AM
 
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Many of us were concerned about Race to the Top and the competition for fed. $$, which did nothing to help schools or children. It made most classroom teachers into overworked data collectors. I don't see De Vos adding anything positive.

Keep contacting your legislators.
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Old 02-08-2017, 10:24 AM
 
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"And the hits just keep on comin'."
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Old 02-08-2017, 11:42 AM
 
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Can you actually name the last 4 Sec't of Education and tell his/her accomplishments or failures? Seriously people are giving this position way more authority and credit then it is deserved. Education is a State Right and I am hoping that it will be given back fully to the State.
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Old 02-12-2017, 06:13 AM
 
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Excuse me, but we were screaming at the top of our lungs, right here on this board and all across America. No one is saying that things were peachy keen before. We complained like CRAZY before and for good reason. DeVos is even worse. It hasn't been good for teachers for a very long time. It's just going to be a lot worse now.
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