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INTERVIEW – Former EAA teacher: “I really think that they are being dishonest with the public, teachers, and parents”

One of the recurring themes in the conversations that I have had with various teachers and administrators who work or have worked for the Education Achievement Authority is that when financial benefactors or members of our state government came to visit, the entire school transformed. Schedules were altered, often on the fly, to accommodate the visitors’ schedules. Kids ate lunch very early or very late, and as you’ll learn in this interview, teachers were reassigned from their normal classrooms to pose as teacher’s assistants for other teachers to give the appearance that large classrooms had multiple adults in them even though that was not normally the case.…

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Pontiac for-profit charter cancels humiliating “Teacher Appreciation Week” activities

Yesterday, I wrote about the activities planned for teachers at the Arts and Technology Academy of Pontiac (ATAP), a for-profit charter school run by Mosaica. These “Teacher Appreciation Week” activities featured a variety of what can only be described as humiliating activities planned for the teachers to raise funds for the school. They included:

  • MANDIVA – Our 3 favorite male faculty members in heels for an hour
  • SAVE MY JOB – 3 faculty members will stand in the parking lot during dismissal and hold a sign.
  • CREAM FACIAL – Students will throw pie in 3 faculty members’ faces during an assembly.
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UPDATED: For-profit charter group Mosaica celebrates “Teacher Appreciation Week” with compulsory teacher humiliation activities

Teacher humiliation for fun and profit

Mosaica Education, Inc., a self-described “for-profit education management organization”, runs eight different for-profit schools in Michigan:

  • Arts and Technology Academy of Pontiac
  • Bay County Public School Academy
  • Bingham Arts Academy
  • Edgewood Elementary School
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School
  • Mosaica Online Academy of Michigan
  • Muskegon Heights High School
  • Muskegon Heights Middle School

In fact, the entire Muskegon Heights school system, under the control of an Emergency Manager, is run by Mosaica. They are in the news lately because they’ve had to secure loans from the state because they are unable to make payroll.

The Arts and Technology Academy of Pontiac – a K-10 Mosaica-run charter with roughly 600 students – has an annual fundraiser to bring in revenue to the school.…

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The one reform education in Michigan needs (and it has NOTHING to do with money)

As Gary notes below, this post will be his last at Eclectablog. It’s been a joy to have him writing for the site and sharing his wisdom and insight into the world of an educator who is on the cutting edge of science-based education models and who understands both the benefits and perils of the use of technology in the classroom. We wish Gary, his wife, and their new baby all the best and invite him to come back to share his knowledge with us any time.

- Chris

Note: This month marks the close of my tenure with Eclectablog. I have thoroughly appreciated, enjoyed, and learned from the opportunity to write with this talented and caring team over this past year.

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PETITION: Eastern Michigan University faculty and students continue push to sever relationship with the EAA

Many Eastern Michigan University faculty and students, particularly those in the College of Education, have been pushing the EMU regents to immediately end their partnership with Governor Snyder’s failed experiment with Detroit students known as the Education Achievement Authority. Professor Stephen Wellinski has created a petition which you can sign HERE to show your support.

Dr. Wellinski has put together an extremely comprehensive set of links to support his effort and has given me permission to share his compilation here.

One goal for this petition was/is to provide a means of communicating to the Eastern Michigan University administration/Board of Regents disapproval of their choice to enter the interlocal agreement creating the Educational Achievement Authority (EAA) and with the idea they would sever this destructive path.…

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Another EAA teacher talks about the failure of Gov Snyder’s education experiment: “I am more of a glorified babysitter than an educator”

Today’s interview is with a teacher who wishes to remain anonymous because they still work within the EAA. Like some of their colleagues in the EAA, veterans who are certified teachers with experience educating kids, this teacher sees the model as flawed. More importantly, they describe the system as run by administrators who do not know what they are doing. From instituting a computer program with no curriculum to a complete lack of support for teachers in how to deal with the disciplinary issues in the EAA schools, EAA administrators have shown time and again that they are out of their league.…

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Tim Walberg gets his School Report Card: An “F” for attacks on Head Start & early education

Residents of Coldwater in Branch County braved the frigid temperatures last Friday to let voters of their town know a bit about their U.S. Congressman Tim Walberg. At a time when all eyes are on education, especially here in Michigan, these hearty souls wanted to draw attention to Walberg’s failed record of support for Head Start. The even took place just one week after Congressman Tim Walberg hypocritically campaigned at a local pre-school with Head Start students.

“Congressman Walberg should apologize to Michigan families for campaigning in a Head Start Program after voting against Head Start and questioning whether the program is successful,” said Betty Rissman.…

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Three ways teachers are connecting with other teachers in Michigan and beyond

As technology has evolved to the level of mobile computing and web-based apps, the popularity of educational technology has soared. Demands for workshops on apps, interactive whiteboards, and mobile devices has never been greater; however, the classic model of professional development for teachers has not been able to keep up.

Sending teachers to a specific place at a specific time to learn in groups from a trainer, who did not necessarily have classroom teaching experience, is the traditional format of workshops for teachers. While these sessions can offer great information, and even some hands-on time with technology, the demand for more training cannot be met with these types of workshops alone.…

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Another EAA teacher speaks out about student abuse and violations of federal law in the treatment of students

NOTE: My reporting on the Education Achievement Authority involves multiple posts. You can read all of my coverage of the EAA by clicking HERE.

EAA Chancellor John Covington released a report of his personal investigation into the allegations in my reporting which you can read about HERE.

As I pointed out earlier today, the response from the Education Achievement Authority to my reporting on the egregious situation in EAA schools was to attack me as not legitimate since I was protecting the identities of the teachers I spoke with for my piece titled “Education Achievement Authority teachers speak out on abuse of students and the failure of the EAA”.…

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Citing Eclectablog reporting, Sen. Hoon-Yung Hopgood calls for the immediate shutdown of the Education Achievement Authority

It’s time for a conversation

NOTE: My reporting on the Education Achievement Authority involves multiple posts. You can read all of my coverage of the EAA by clicking HERE.

EAA Chancellor John Covington released a report of his personal investigation into the allegations in my reporting which you can read about HERE.

Last week, I published an exclusive exposé on abuse of Detroit students in Education Achievement Authority (EAA) schools titled “Education Achievement Authority teachers speak out on abuse of students and the failure of the EAA”. The piece details reports of administrators striking students along with gross deficiencies in terms of security, computers, and support for EAA teachers.…

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