Category: Privatization

Courtesy of Allison Shelley/The Verbatim Agency for American Education: Images of Teachers and Students in Action.

Should all teachers be certified? Charter school leaders say no…

“I wouldn’t want to be the one that tells Gov. Jerry Brown that he can’t teach a government class because he would otherwise have to go back to college,” said Myrna Castrejón, president and CEO of the California Charter Schools Association. I would. Because Jerry Brown is in no way qualified, prepared, certified, or remotely capable of being a teacher. […]

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Betsy DeVos’ Zombie Voucher Schemes — the Unconstitutional, Undemocratic Tax Scams That Just Won’t Die

Betsy DeVos’ Zombie Voucher Schemes — the Unconstitutional, Undemocratic Tax Scams That Just Won’t Die

The week ended with yet another excellent article from Peter Greene​ in Forbes, this time on the dangers of “Tax Credit Scholarships”, one of Betsy DeVos major thrusts as Secretary of Education under Donald Trump. So, what are Tax Credit Scholarships? They are complicated financial mechanisms that allow businesses to divert their tax payments to fund specific private and religious […]

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Our Public Schools Aren’t Failing; We’re Failing Our Public Schools

Our Public Schools Aren’t Failing; We’re Failing Our Public Schools

I’ve noticed an uptick lately in the number of folks talking about school choice, charter schools, and competition. I’m guessing this is a by-product of the recent swing in public opinion against charter schools, and the attendant backlash against 2020 presidential candidate and big charter school cheerleader, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker. The conversation around charters and choice, however, like […]

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If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Lie: The Trump/DeVos Doctrine of Redefinition

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Lie: The Trump/DeVos Doctrine of Redefinition

Trump and his Republican enablers, like Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, are beginning to realize that they have approximately zero chance of ever winning another election–if held and run fairly–on the issues, so they are scrambling frantically to redefine these issues in a clumsy and desperate effort to confuse and distract voters. Here are just 2 examples; one from national […]

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Betsy DeVos doesn’t know what she doesn’t know about education

Betsy DeVos doesn’t know what she doesn’t know about education

“Parents, by their very nature, should decide what, when, where and how their children learn,” DeVos said. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is at it again. Currently on her second “Rethink Schools” tour, “DeVos will swing by four states: Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana.” Two tours of public schools in two years on the job–the poor woman must be exhausted. And […]

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Why are *you* angry? Are you Red or Blue?

Why are *you* angry? Are you Red or Blue?

Everyone is angry. I get it. Our country is as divided as I can remember it being in my lifetime. Friends are divided. Institutions are divided. Families are divided. People that never seemed to be “political” are suddenly, and surprisingly, strident defenders of a particular belief or position–or equally vocal about being against that position. Everywhere you go these days […]

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https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Cory_Booker_and_Elmo_(8223729549).jpg

Diane Ravitch, fennel, and Cory Booker

Let’s start with a confession: I have a crush on Diane Ravitch. (Note: my wife knows!) Sure, it’s a (mostly) academic crush, but a crush nonetheless. One of the real thrills of my professional life was attending a dinner in New York City a couple of years ago in honor of Dr. Ravitch’s contributions to public education. I had a […]

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Privatized prison services in Michigan finally declared an utter failure after four years of indisputable proof

Privatized prison services in Michigan finally declared an utter failure after four years of indisputable proof

First we had this: Then we had this: And throughout it all we had food service employees having sex with inmates, rotten, rodent-chewed food being served to prison inmates, and drugs being smuggled into prisons by prison employees. Since 2014, I have written roughly 30 posts about the privatization of prison food services in Michigan and they all tell the […]

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Oh, look. More maggots found in prisons with privatized, for-profit food service vendor

Oh, look. More maggots found in prisons with privatized, for-profit food service vendor

This is a disgusting story. It’s disgusting because it involves maggots in the food served to human beings. But mostly it’s disgusting because it is further proof that privatizing critical government services to a for-profit company inevitably results in cutting corners and inhumane conditions, this time for prisoners. Officials found maggots in food in three separate incidents at a Jackson-area […]

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Michigan Republican senator wants to have private, for-profit police forces – What could possibly go wrong?

Michigan Republican senator wants to have private, for-profit police forces – What could possibly go wrong?

This post has been updated to correct information about training requirements for a “special police officer”. It takes a lot to surprise me when it comes to “Republicans Gone Wild!” type legislation in Michigan these days. After all, this is the state where Republicans passed a law forcing women to purchase special insurance to cover abortions – what I call […]

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Privatized prison food vendor employee caught having sex with an inmate. Again. And serving rotting food. Again.

Privatized prison food vendor employee caught having sex with an inmate. Again. And serving rotting food. Again.

Gov. Rick Snyder is determined to prove that privatizing critical state services is a big money saver for the state. What his spreadsheets and dashboards fail to take into account are the unseen and unbudgeted prices paid when those private for-profit groups fail to act professionally. First it was Aramark who got busted for: Running out of food Making unauthorized […]

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