The teaching profession is steadily being transformed into a “gig job” on the model of Uber, Lyft and AirBnB wherein customers are paired with independent providers via Smart Phone apps. The model grew out of human desperation during the bleakest days of the Great Recession. As teacher shortages roll out across the nation we can count on Republican legislatures to follow the “shock doctrine” and use the disturbing teacher shortage situation to implement their ideological agendas. In this case it’s the ongoing destruction of classic American public schools and placing K-12 education in the largely untested hands of those for whom schools are just another institution to be run on a business model, especially the for-profit model.…
You have to give the group headed up by rabid tea partier Pasquale Battaglia credit; they are persistent. After having their request to charter their tea party charter school denied by Brighton Public Schools, they have turned their attention now to Whitmore Lake Public Schools.
The WLPS voted on October 26th to put out a call soliciting a cyber charter school for their district. This attracted attention of Battaglia’s Livingston Classical Academy – part of his American Classical Academy group, formerly known as American Christian Academy – who plan to pursue a charter from WLPS:
The following essay was written by Mitchell Robinson and was originally published on his most-excellent blog at MitchellRobinson.net. Robinson is associate professor and chair of music education, and coordinator of the music student teaching program at Michigan State University. His essay is reposted here with permission.
The Great Lakes Education Project is a Michigan advocacy organization dedicated to advancing the charter school agenda in the state. GLEP’s official mission statement says the following: “Because a zip code shouldn’t determine the education outcomes for children, GLEP believes we must expand choice, improve quality and increase accountability. We support Governor Snyder’s ‘any time, any place, any way, at any pace’ approach to education.” But it’s worth noting that Michigan leads the nation in “for-profit” charter schools, with nearly 80% of the state’s charters being of the “for-profit” variety, making GLEP not so much an educational organization as a PR firm for charter school authorizers.…
GUEST POST: Was Michigan charter school board complicit in theft of tax dollars by its founder Steve Ingersoll?
Steve Ingersoll has become the face of charter school operators scamming Michigan taxpayers by siphoning tax dollars intended for education into their own personal bank accounts. Ingersoll founded and operated the Bay City Academy in Bay City and the Grand Traverse Academy in Grand Traverse County. Last spring he was convicted on three counts of criminal tax fraud connected to his management of the Bay City Academy.
The Grand Traverse Academy severed its relationship with Ingersoll shortly before his indictment in 2014. However, they had known about financial irregularities in Ingersoll’s operation of their charter school as early as a year before but continued to keep him on board and, as recently as January of this year, defended him as a “philanthropist” who helped them “stay out of deficit”:
Gov. Snyder’s State School Reform Officer received $100K in tax dollars for “ghost school” she never opened
Yesterday I wrote about a report from the Center for Media and Democracy that showed how 25 proposed charter schools in Michigan received $1.7 million in tax dollars but never actually opened. It turns out that one of those schools was the Detroit College Preparatory Academy, the brainchild or “dream” of a woman named Natasha Baker.
Here’s what Baker’s dream involved from an article in the Metro Times published in 2011:
Charter school scam: 25 Michigan charter schools received $1.7 million in tax dollars but never actually opened
This week, the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) released a scathing report on charter schools in 12 states which have received federal funding. The report, titled Charter School Black Hole shows that Michigan charter schools received $34,997,658 between 2010-2015 under the federal Charter School Program (CSP). 139 of the 297 charters (as of 2014, the number is up to 302 now) in Michigan were subsidized in part by federal tax dollars in the past five years, about half.
What CMD found is shocking:
The following guest post is by Mitchell Robinson and was first posted at his education-focused blog MitchellRobinson.net. He offered it up to me to share with the readers of Eclectablog and I immediately took him up on it having already read his beautiful prose. Robinson is associate professor and chair of music education at Michigan State University. He has held previous collegiate appointments at the University of Connecticut and Eastman School of Music and his essay centers around the importance of art and music in public schools. Its not just an academic discussion. In Lansing Public Schools, for example, they have eliminated the music and arts programs.…
UPDATED: How is former EAA chief John Covington still being considered to run schools? Two words: Broad Foundation
This post has been updated below.
Former Education Achievement Authority Chancellor John Covington has left a trail of scandal and disarray in both Kansas City and Detroit after abruptly quitting leadership positions in both cities. Yet, over the past week, we’ve learned that he’s in the final four being considered to head up the Metro Nashville Public Schools.
Once Nashville officials learned about his sordid past, things began to fall apart with the local teachers union asking for a refund of at least some of the money spent with the search firm Hazard Young Attea & Associates. “I really thought that when the board of education entered into a contract with the search firm, they were hiring a search firm that would do appropriate vetting, or at least, call up all of the references to find out what they knew about the individual,” said Erik Huth, president-elect of the Metropolitan Nashville Education Association.…
SHOCKER! Corporate front group Mackinac Center wants to turn all Detroit Public Schools over to charters
Oh, look. The corporate front group Mackinac Center wants to convert all Detroit Public Schools (DPS) to charter schools. This, they tell us would be “the best safeguard” and would “allow many independent charter school operators to try varying models for converted DPS schools.”
In other words, they once again want to experiment with Detroit school children.
Muskegon Heights put a similar arrangement in place: Again, the district converted its schools into charter schools, and revenues from the district’s 18-mill nonhomestead property tax were dedicated to paying off Muskegon Heights’ debt.…
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