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Parents won’t be able to transfer their children out of California’s lowest-ranked schools under a little-known law because the state’s scoring index – the basis for the rankings – has been suspended.

The California Department of Education this year will not identify 1,000 low-ranking schools, where parents can request to transfer their children from, because no test scores are available to determine which schools meet the criteria, said Jenny Singh, education research and evaluation administrator for the department.

As a result, parents won’t have the option to transfer under the Open Enrollment Act next year.

The transfer program is falling victim to the lack of Academic Performance Index, or API, scores, which are suspended while state officials develop a new accountability system.

State officials had used API scores to determine which schools qualify for the list through last year. The API was based on the California Standards Tests, which students last took in 2013.

“We don’t really have a choice,” Singh said. “You can’t produce something when you don’t have the data.”

The California Standards Tests were replaced by the Smarter Balanced Assessments that students took for the first time in the spring. The first scores are due out next month.

State officials are looking to change the school accountability system, incorporating results of the Smarter Balanced Assessments. The state superintendent next year is expected to make a recommendation for the replacement of the API.

Gloria Romero, the former state senator who was the author of the Open Enrollment Act, sometimes known as the Romero Act, said last week that she was unaware that the state was skipping the rankings this year. Since leaving office in 2010, Romero started the California Center for Parent Empowerment, which helps parents use the transfer law.

Romero said there could be legal challenges if the list is not produced. She called it a “scary proposition.”

“Does the law go away because there’s a suspension? Because the state failed to do something?” Romero said.

The Open Enrollment Act was part of a series of education reforms that took effect in 2010, part of the state’s effort at the time to qualify for federal Race to the Top funds – a grant program meant to reform teaching and learning throughout the states.

Under the open enrollment law, the state identifies the 1,000 lowest-achieving schools by looking at the bottom 10 percent of API scores. School districts can have no more than 10 percent of their schools identified for the transfers. See the state’s methodology here. Parents can request transfers to any school with higher test scores, even those outside their districts. Schools are supposed to accept students as long as there is room.

It’s unknown how many parents used the law because the state did not track requests.

Officials at three of the state’s largest school districts – Los Angeles, San Diego and Fresno unified – said few parents used the option. However, parents often move their children out of those same schools under the federal No Child Left Behind law, which allows transfers out of certain schools that fail to make test score goals. The No Child Left Behind law is better known and has been in place for more than a decade.

Districts also often let parents transfer out of their neighborhood schools other ways, such as magnet schools, specialized programs and inter-district transfer requests.

San Diego Unified officials were unaware of any parents who specifically moved their children under the Open Enrollment Act, although students switched schools under other choice programs, said Ursula Kroemer, a San Diego district spokeswoman.

In Fresno Unified, no parents have requested Open Enrollment Act transfers in the past three years, although two had in prior years, said Jedidiah Chernabaeff, a Fresno district spokesman. No transfers were granted under this specific law, although they used other choice options.

The state’s largest school district, Los Angeles Unified, has not experienced a “significant impact” from the act. Under the law, 41 parents applied for transfers last year for the 2015-16 school year, said Nancy Gutierrez, the district’s program coordinator of pupil services.

But far more students have switched schools through other programs: About 6,000 parents apply for incoming or outgoing permits annually, Gutierrez said.

“The decision not to release a list this year seems fair because it would not be useful to categorize or rate schools based on several years old data,” Gutierrez said in an email.

Romero said she believes few parents have requested transfers because they were unaware of the law, despite requirements that districts notify parents. Late last year, Romero held a series of meetings in Los Angeles and Anaheim to inform parents about the choice, but she said she encountered resistance in both places. District officials made it difficult for parents to apply, Romero said.

Also, parents had little time to submit requests. The school list came out in November and the state deadline is Jan. 1 – a time when schools are on winter break.

“If you don’t know the law exists, you can’t use it,” Romero said.

Bill Lucia, president of EdVoice, which backed the law, said he also was unaware that the state was not producing rankings. Last week, he said he would be looking into the matter.

Shortly after the law passed, some district officials complained about the process. Because only a limited number of schools can be identified from each district, some schools in districts with higher API scores landed on the low-achieving list. Schools are allowed to petition the state board to be removed from the list.

Although parents are unable to use old API scores to request transfers, they are still able to use the results under another part of the 2010 reforms – the Parent Empowerment Act, or parent trigger law. According to a recent court ruling and other opinions, parents can continue to use the two-year-old scores to determine if a school is failing under the Parent Empowerment Act. Parents can use the act to force changes at their schools, including turning them into charters.

 


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  1. Elden Sarinana 1 year ago1 year ago

    The law provides parents in certain federally funded Title I schools with the option of either keeping their children enrolled in their present school or seeking enrollment in other public schools. This option is only available where the child s present school has been identified as a school in need of improvement by the state, which means that the school has not demonstrated two consecutive years of adequate progress in student academic performance.

  2. Parent News Opinion 1 year ago1 year ago

    This is a post I posted on another article. Do not censor it EdSource. I am also writing Bill Gates and his wife Melinda. I called Ms. Jennifer Singh and got back a response that was garbled (perhaps on purpose) that said that in the article posted, she did not make the decision at all. She is innocent. She said that the California Department of Education Legal Department made the decision for her. … Read More

    This is a post I posted on another article. Do not censor it EdSource.

    I am also writing Bill Gates and his wife Melinda.

    I called Ms. Jennifer Singh and got back a response that was garbled (perhaps on purpose) that said that in the article posted, she did not make the decision at all. She is innocent. She said that the California Department of Education Legal Department made the decision for her. I say, that only Mr. Tom Torlakson can speak to this for it removes bussing from children all across California and opens the door for the removal of Program Improvement Status for all schools.\\

    Mr. Torkalson, can you have one of your assistants or Ms. Jennifer Singh who works for the C.D.E. and is quoted in this article respond on this comment section. Can you? for your salary is paid for with taxpayer dollars and you work for parents., parents, which I am one pay your salary, you work for us.

    anyway, here is a post I wrote on edsource on another article, it also pertains to this article.

    I ask Ms. Tully to retract her article for she did not get the honest reporting as to whom allowed the C.D.E. to stop the Open Ennrollment Act mandates, and I ask that the S.B.E. board be informed of this situation, and I will e mail the S.B.E.board and send a certified letter to Mr. Torlakson, and his assistants.

    Bussing is being stopped due to Ms. Jennifer Singh who works for the C.D.E. in my opinion, and the reporting by Ms. Tully needs to follow up with Ms. Singh to ask her to divulge that she has no power in decision making. The reporter Ms. Tully needs to do more in depth reporting, the story is not yet completed in my opinion, and do not censor this opinion on EdSource for I am sending a copy of it To Bill and Melinda Gates who give .75 million a year to EdSource. I know Mr. Gates reads things and I am mailing a certified letter to his assistants.

    ——————————–

    Dear SC Parent,

    Thank you for posting your comments. I am surprised that they have not been erased on this site. I am hoping that EdSource allows freedom of speech but not sure, since, many of my posts have been removed.

    I have also been asked by EdSource currently oversight editor Mr. Fitsgerald or some name similar to stop putting dots betwe3n my paragraphs, why, I do not know. for that is also an intrusion of freedom of speech.

    so we agree, SD Parent, that the current common core mandate has degressed learning in the classroom, dumbed it down, and the math is hit hardest with students not learning a thing or very little and this has been going on in school years 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 and continuing along in this current year of 2015-2016.

    It is a very crazy thing, and I know Bill Gates wants to know about it. I do. He gives or donates .75 million over to EdSource each and every school year, and I know Bill Gates wants to hear the nitty gritty of what is going on in America’s schools in California, I know he does want desperately to know, and his thoughtful wife too.

    Bill and Milenda give lots of monies to education to help children. They know that the current across the board school districts across this here United States is not covering the math well or the other subjects too. They spearheaded Common Core and they are on track. Because, this SmarterBalance/CAASPP test will show a steep decline in how well math is learned, and Bill wants the American born kids to have a fair chance in getting a good job after high school, and he knows and his wife knows (I ask they read this if any of their assistants read this, please forward in e mail) and Bill and Melinda just want the hoax of the grade inflation to stop so that the Common Core California Core (as Mr. Tom Torlakson is referring to it) and the SmarterBalance CAASPP all can point to parents that their son or daughter needs extra help to be globally competitive.

    Too often high school graduates falter out in college. Why. Because of grade inflation. The SmarterBalance/CAASPP shows parents in a mailed envelope the global progress, the knowledge, with no grade inflation, of where their son or daughter is at with regard to each grade level. No if’s and’s or but’s from teachers or school districts who make a heavy happy wage of teaching without a care to how well students do in subjects such as MATH, SCIENCE, AND GOD FORBID “”””HISTORY, BECAUSE SOCIAL STUDIES IS ON THE BACK BURNER IN ALL SCHOOLS THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

    I sincerely thank Bill Gates and Melinda Gates for they have helped parents be aware of GRADE INFLATION.

    I want EdSource to post more honest facts such as the “SD Parent posted.” Thank you “SD Parent.” for having courage to post on this website.

    My child also says math is not taught well and the teachers are not teaching well.

    I try to supplement learning at home the best I can because I cannot afford the after school programs and since California has no OPEN ENROLLEMENT SCHOOLS mandate the school districts have no accountability to do any remedial teaching to any student who falls down on learning. NO ACCOUNTABILITY.

    I know that some California State Board of Education Board Members read these posts, I ask the California State Board of Education Board members to not get rid of the California Open Enrollment worst 1,000 schools mandates as Jennifer Singh has said she has pulled the plug on it all. I ask the California State Board of Education Board members to call Ms. Jennifer Singh of the Open Enrollment List Department and to ask her what authority she has to do this. The S.B.E. is the only group that has such authority.

    Dear S.B.E. board members, you devaluate yourself if you allow Jennifer Singh to pull off Open Enrollment ACt mandates. You harm parents who rely on the bussing to get their kids the hell away from non-prefo4rming well, underachieving schools, because low income parents, such as myself, cannot afford to pay for bussing each day.

    You, SBE board members need to call a special session to stop this decision by Tom Torlakson and do not tell me he was not informed of it. Do not.

    I took the time with my Walmart phone of paid minutes (limited minutes) to call ms Jennifer singh of the C.D.E. and she was not there, she left a voice mail for me explaining that the law or legal department of the California Department of Education made the decision to pull Open Enrollment Schools mandates because the S.B.E. did not figure out accountability to how schools can be measured.

    Anyway SD Parent it seems that parents must no longer trust teachers, or administration or maybe the S.B.E. State Board Of Education members for the S.B.E. seems to be asleep and Tom Torlakson seems to let Ms. Singh speak for himself and ….

    it is good that EdSource posted the article , see and look it up. \\\\

    I post it here:

    http://edsource.org/2015/parents-miss-out-on-option-to-transfer-out-of-low-ranking-schools/83726

    thank you very very m uch S.D. Parent for your post at least helped me to know that many thousands of parents are very concerned with the current things going on in California Education, and maybe Bill Gates will take time to roll up his sleeves and help out m ore, but I do thank him for the SmarterBalance/CAASPP test. Will teachers honor the scores and lambast the previous school year teachers for not teaching math well?

    Replies

    • Sarah Tully 1 year ago1 year ago

      Hi,

      Jenny Singh responded to my questions about the future of the Open Enrollment Act. She did not say that she was the one who made the decision. She was just the messenger. I hope that clarifies it.

      Sarah

  3. navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

    It’s a shame that charter schools are excluded from the set of schools subject to the open enrollment act.

  4. ann 1 year ago1 year ago

    Let’s see who was that expert who did his darnedest to warn that we would be left with little or nothing to measure our schools success, improvement, achievement? I think it his name was Doug.

  5. Don 1 year ago1 year ago

    Manuel said, "Sure, that judge in the OC ruled that they could still go on with their conversion even though there is no more “list of 1000″. But that makes no sense because this is supposed to be done based on facts now, not two or more years ago." All schools in PI have had their status frozen since 2013, the last year of the API. They cannot enter or exit and they do not … Read More

    Manuel said, “Sure, that judge in the OC ruled that they could still go on with their conversion even though there is no more “list of 1000″. But that makes no sense because this is supposed to be done based on facts now, not two or more years ago.”

    All schools in PI have had their status frozen since 2013, the last year of the API. They cannot enter or exit and they do not advance one year. If the judge’s ruling makes no sense neither does the policy of the USDE and the CDE.

    Regarding the use of the word “reform”, while I do agree it can be very loaded, words are regularly used to ill-effect so why get hung up about one? If ideas are presented clearly and with purpose the words will not be misunderstood except by those who wish them to be.

    “Watch your thoughts, they become words;
    watch your words, they become actions;
    watch your actions, they become habits;
    watch your habits, they become character;
    watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”

    FRANK OUTLAW
    Late President of the Bi-Lo Stores

  6. Manuel 1 year ago1 year ago

    Oh, boy, the more things change, the more they stay the same. First off, the API. The API was always a moving target, with its calculation being tweaked from year to year. Yet many people thought it was a good enough to use as a comparison tool. Even though its web page very explicitly said that it wasn't meant to do that. Then we have to look at what it was based on: the CST scores. Many … Read More

    Oh, boy, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

    First off, the API. The API was always a moving target, with its calculation being tweaked from year to year. Yet many people thought it was a good enough to use as a comparison tool. Even though its web page very explicitly said that it wasn’t meant to do that.

    Then we have to look at what it was based on: the CST scores. Many people here insist that it is a criterion-reference test even though its distribution indicates otherwise. Given that the distribution of scores did not significantly changed from year to year how could it be expected to indicate academic growth? Any variation on the scores were fluctuations that eventually regressed to the mean.

    Now the state is admitting that, well, since we don’t have scores, we don’t have the API and, therefore, we cannot make that list of the 1000 worst schools in the state. And Romero expresses surprise? Has she forgotten that this was the basis for her single achievement, the “parent trigger” law? The schools eligible for the trigger were supposed to come from that list!l You don’t believe me? Take a look yourself: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/ac/pe/ It clearly refers to Ed Code 53202, which describes how schools end up in that list.

    Sure, that judge in the OC ruled that they could still go on with their conversion even though there is no more “list of 1000”. But that makes no sense because this is supposed to be done based on facts now, not two or more years ago. IANAL, but I don’t see how this makes sense unless that judge has other motives. It should be reversed on appeal simply because it makes no sense at all.

    Anyway, the entire “list of 1000” was a political move by Romero and Huff. After all, they based their bill on an emergency that is clearly not true at the school level given the low number of parents who have used it to transfer their kid to a different school.

    BTW, one possible reason why it is so little used in LAUSD is because once the district was included in the C.O.R.E. Waiver from NCLB Deasy decreed that any student who elected to go to a non-neighborhood school was responsible for his/her own transportation. His rationale was that since LAUSD was waived from the demands of NCLB, the district was free to deny transportation since “it was doing all it could to improve local schools.” How do you like that?

    Replies

    • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

      When you say it wasn’t meant to be a comparison tool are you referring to comparisons between schools? It certainly was intended to compare the same school’s longitudinal results. That’s what AYP is.

    • ann 1 year ago1 year ago

      I beg to differ. Our school raised it’s API from 634 to 705 over two years. I know of others that had more success.

      • Manuel 1 year ago1 year ago

        Oh, really?But you still did not make the magic 800, putting you at risk of being one of the 1,000 worst schools list. Let's take a look at the stats of that school, shall we? What was the magic sauce? Teaching to the test? Coaching on "successful" strategies? Moving the kids "on the bubble" up? Sending certain kids home the day of the test? Come on, Ann, put your money where your words are: what's the school's … Read More

        Oh, really?But you still did not make the magic 800, putting you at risk of being one of the 1,000 worst schools list.

        Let’s take a look at the stats of that school, shall we? What was the magic sauce? Teaching to the test? Coaching on “successful” strategies? Moving the kids “on the bubble” up? Sending certain kids home the day of the test?

        Come on, Ann, put your money where your words are: what’s the school’s name?

  7. Parent 1 year ago1 year ago

    “San Diego Unified officials were unaware of any parents who specifically moved their children under the Open Enrollment Act, although students switched schools under other choice programs, said Ursula Kroemer, a San Diego district spokeswoman.”

    The other “choice programs” exist because of the threat of using the open enrollment transfer.

  8. Anne 1 year ago1 year ago

    Why not have Open Enrollment at all district schools? Students living inside the historic boundaries should probably be at the top of the list to enroll in their neighborhood school, but all others could be welcome on a space available basis. Yes, this may imply a lottery. Except for marketing and improvement purposes, who cares why parents would choose a particular school? Parents may think the program at a particular … Read More

    Why not have Open Enrollment at all district schools? Students living inside the historic boundaries should probably be at the top of the list to enroll in their neighborhood school, but all others could be welcome on a space available basis. Yes, this may imply a lottery. Except for marketing and improvement purposes, who cares why parents would choose a particular school? Parents may think the program at a particular school meets their child’s needs; it may be close to after school care; a known excellent teacher is on its staff and so on. A school which is losing students might need to consider why. Should it embrace a focus to draw students as a magnet? Perhaps substantial, focused professional development, an investment by the district, would produce a turnaround. Consider that schools with boundaries may be a thing of the past.

    Replies

    • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

      District wide open enrollment is a complex issue. Without writing a novel, it probably can only be as neutral as you imply in very homogenous districts. Otherwise it creates extremely segregated schools.

      • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

        Look at SFUSD. They have a school choice system and diversity has been on the decline.

      • Parent 1 year ago1 year ago

        Why is open enrollment a complex issue? The issue is this: the parent should have choice of public schools. They can enroll in any public charter school with space available, why not in any district school?

        • CarolineSF 1 year ago1 year ago

          Districtwide choice is a complex issue in San Francisco. Used to be, families were guaranteed their "attendance-area" school -- almost always the nearby neighborhood school; in a few neighborhoods there were "satellite districts" intended to diversify certain schools. But all families were guaranteed their assignment-area school and almost all their neighborhood school. It was that way when my older child started K in SFUSD (fall 1996). But that system wasn't working for everyone. Many, many, … Read More

          Districtwide choice is a complex issue in San Francisco. Used to be, families were guaranteed their “attendance-area” school — almost always the nearby neighborhood school; in a few neighborhoods there were “satellite districts” intended to diversify certain schools. But all families were guaranteed their assignment-area school and almost all their neighborhood school.

          It was that way when my older child started K in SFUSD (fall 1996). But that system wasn’t working for everyone. Many, many, many white middle-class families fled the district either for private schools or suburbia, because they didn’t like or feared or THOUGHT they wouldn’t like their attendance-area school (there was a lot of “I heard it was bad” from parents who had never visited the school).

          There were a few “alternative schools” that families could choose, but most had lotteries because they had more applicants than openings — often far more — and that was the option for families who didn’t want their assignment-area school.

          About 2000, SFUSD changed its enrollment system to “all choice,” so now families can apply to any school in the district.

          Predictably, under that system, some schools are really popular and get far more applicants than openings, so now families go through lots of stress because of the lotteries for those schools. (Actually, those of us who really know the district know that there are fine schools that aren’t oversubscribed, but that’s another issue.) In any case, the complexity of the all-choice system is that it has led to a list of popular, high-status, oversubscribed schools and many parent complaints about “lack of certainty” — which now is blamed for driving white middle-class families to private and the ‘burbs.

          As I say, when parents DID have “certainty,” white middle-class families were fleeing to private and the ‘burbs because they didn’t WANT “certainty” if they didn’t think they’d like the school. I don’t think the percentage of white middle-class families fleeing to private and the ‘burbs has budged.

          Also predictably, it’s families who live near popular, oversubscribed schools who want “certainty” and families who don’t, or who aren’t sure, who want districtwide choice.

          But anyway, the division of the district into popular, oversubscribed and poorly thought-of, under-requested schools — and much angst and controversy because of the oversubscribed schools and “lack of certainty” — is a result of the all-choice enrollment system. So that’s why and how it’s complicated.

          • Parent 1 year ago1 year ago

            So school choice is bad because it causes stress for parents who might not get their child in a good school.

            Without school choice they would know that their child would get a crappy school so they wouldn’t feel stressed.

            This is your argument against school choice?

            • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

              Parent, I think Caroline's point isn't against school choice. She's been a proponent of it as long as I can remember. Her point is that each district has circumstances that make it unique. What she didn't say, (though not by purposeful omission I think), is that the reason we have an assignment policy that makes diversity its number one priority is because San Francisco's ultra-liberal public prioritizes public education as a social policy tool for … Read More

              Parent, I think Caroline’s point isn’t against school choice. She’s been a proponent of it as long as I can remember. Her point is that each district has circumstances that make it unique. What she didn’t say, (though not by purposeful omission I think), is that the reason we have an assignment policy that makes diversity its number one priority is because San Francisco’s ultra-liberal public prioritizes public education as a social policy tool for race relations before it’s educational mission. Those same liberals talk a good game, but high-tailing it for the exits when it comes to sending their kids to schools in their own neighborhoods. Here school choice is a means to live a lie.

            • FloydThursby1941 1 year ago1 year ago

              Very true. Newsom, liberal hero, moves to Marin before his kids turn 5. Pelosi, liberal hero, private school. Chris Daly, liberal hero, moves to Fairfield before his kids turn 5. Most Pacific Heights liberals use private school to the point where Hamlin, 3.5% black and Latino combined, is a few blocks from public Cobb, completely unsupported by reputedly liberal Pacific Heights, is 50% black and has virtually no whites. Private … Read More

              Very true. Newsom, liberal hero, moves to Marin before his kids turn 5. Pelosi, liberal hero, private school. Chris Daly, liberal hero, moves to Fairfield before his kids turn 5. Most Pacific Heights liberals use private school to the point where Hamlin, 3.5% black and Latino combined, is a few blocks from public Cobb, completely unsupported by reputedly liberal Pacific Heights, is 50% black and has virtually no whites. Private schools are more popular the closer to blacks and Latinos they are. Even good public schools with over 900 ratings are looked down upon by many whites. They villainize those who don’t want to drive across town, but private school and white flight get a free pass. You can completely evade integration as dreamed of by Martin Luther King and most San Franciscans will still give you credit as a full fledged progressive liberal.

            • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

              Yes, Caroline, SFUSD has a slightly higher API as last reported, but ONLY because it has much HIGHER number of Asians. Otherwise it has the LOWEST subgroup achievement for a large urban district in this state. And 7 times the state average for first year teachers at low performing schools (thanks, Navigio, for the stat). And the highest percentage of private school participants. Now SFUSD is on a mission to destroy its two flagship … Read More

              Yes, Caroline, SFUSD has a slightly higher API as last reported, but ONLY because it has much HIGHER number of Asians. Otherwise it has the LOWEST subgroup achievement for a large urban district in this state. And 7 times the state average for first year teachers at low performing schools (thanks, Navigio, for the stat). And the highest percentage of private school participants. Now SFUSD is on a mission to destroy its two flagship schools in the name of equity! But I digress…

              State law already allows any in-district student to claim an untaken seat at a school up to a certain date.

            • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

              Never thought i'd say it, but kudos to you floyd for your comment just above (starting with 'very true'). That's the best thing you've ever written here. Its not only true in sf, but in most residentially integrated areas in CA (many of which will be 'progressive'). That, in spite of the fact that Kahlenberg argues that school integration is likely the single most effective change we could make to improve school outcomes. Schools getting … Read More

              Never thought i’d say it, but kudos to you floyd for your comment just above (starting with ‘very true’). That’s the best thing you’ve ever written here.
              Its not only true in sf, but in most residentially integrated areas in CA (many of which will be ‘progressive’). That, in spite of the fact that Kahlenberg argues that school integration is likely the single most effective change we could make to improve school outcomes. Schools getting it from both sides. Who woulda thunk?

          • CarolineSF 1 year ago1 year ago

            Don is interpreting my explanation accurately. ... Speaking as a liberal who sent both my kids to SFUSD schools K-12, I know for certain that there are circles that will shame those parents, and the culture in our district has changed (somewhat thanks to Parents for Public Schools) to at least make them cringe a bit. And I can execute a highly skilled guilt trip myself when it's called for. (But just to note … Read More

            Don is interpreting my explanation accurately. … Speaking as a liberal who sent both my kids to SFUSD schools K-12, I know for certain that there are circles that will shame those parents, and the culture in our district has changed (somewhat thanks to Parents for Public Schools) to at least make them cringe a bit. And I can execute a highly skilled guilt trip myself when it’s called for. (But just to note — I’m not speaking as a Chris Daly fan, but Fairfield isn’t a ritzy suburb and SFUSD has slightly higher academic achievement than Fairfield-Suisun Unified.)

            • CarolineSF 1 year ago1 year ago

              Since academic achievement correlates very consistently with demographics or sometimes selection processes, you can justifiably say "... but only because ..." in any discussion of test scores. Palo Alto schools outperform San Francisco's, "but only because" Palo Alto has mostly extremely wealthy, highly educated families. So that doesn't negate the point. It's very rare to look at comparisons of test scores and not see the demographic correlation. Read More

              Since academic achievement correlates very consistently with demographics or sometimes selection processes, you can justifiably say “… but only because …” in any discussion of test scores. Palo Alto schools outperform San Francisco’s, “but only because” Palo Alto has mostly extremely wealthy, highly educated families. So that doesn’t negate the point. It’s very rare to look at comparisons of test scores and not see the demographic correlation.

            • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

              No argument there. Now if SFUSD would just admit how poorly they educate most of their students and stop claiming to be the best or, excuse me, one for the best. Obviously SFUSD is far from the best based on their horrendous results. African Americans, Hispanics and Asians underperformed the same statewide ethnic groups by -78, -48 and -32 points, respectively. Only whites outperformed other whites statewide and did so by a considerable … Read More

              No argument there. Now if SFUSD would just admit how poorly they educate most of their students and stop claiming to be the best or, excuse me, one for the best. Obviously SFUSD is far from the best based on their horrendous results. African Americans, Hispanics and Asians underperformed the same statewide ethnic groups by -78, -48 and -32 points, respectively. Only whites outperformed other whites statewide and did so by a considerable 42 point margin. 2013 stats) SFUSD just happens to have a very motivated group of mostly free and reduced lunch Asian kids families that don’t believe that their SES dictates their success.

            • CarolineSF 1 year ago1 year ago

              Well, it's totally off topic here, but as a highly involved SFUSD parent volunteer for 16 years, I don't agree that SFUSD educates most of its students poorly. State API (2013) is higher than SFUSD for Asian, African American and Latino students; state API is lower than SFUSD for white, socioeconomically disadvantaged and English-language learner students. I'd say one would have to dig a lot more into those figures before making such a sweeping statement. … Read More

              Well, it’s totally off topic here, but as a highly involved SFUSD parent volunteer for 16 years, I don’t agree that SFUSD educates most of its students poorly. State API (2013) is higher than SFUSD for Asian, African American and Latino students; state API is lower than SFUSD for white, socioeconomically disadvantaged and English-language learner students. I’d say one would have to dig a lot more into those figures before making such a sweeping statement. Also, there’s the whole thing where panicky white parents are supposedly to be engaged in a hysterical mass exodus from SFUSD. Are only the ones with smarter kids staying? Or are SFUSD’s white kids (along with socioeconomically disadvantaged kids and English-language learners) inexplicably getting better educations than other subgroups? (As the parent of white kids who attended SFUSD K-12, I get to pat myself smugly on the back either way, right?)

            • FloydThursby1941 1 year ago1 year ago

              Don’s stats are right but Caroline is right too, white kids get a great education in SFUSD, on average far better than the suburbs whites think are better. Some things are frustrating, but it’s true, you got more for them than you would have elsewhere, and many whites panic into private schools yet it was proven there’s no advantage to that if you control for income.

      • Manuel 1 year ago1 year ago

        Ah, but it doesn't seem that Ann cares about that. What is wrong with "separate but equal" you say? Plenty, starting with a lot of case law (so my lawyer friends tell me). Schools that are bad are that way for a number of reasons, but the main one seems to be zip code. Very few people, least of all the "reformies," want to deal with that. They keep telling us that good schools magically … Read More

        Ah, but it doesn’t seem that Ann cares about that.

        What is wrong with “separate but equal” you say? Plenty, starting with a lot of case law (so my lawyer friends tell me).

        Schools that are bad are that way for a number of reasons, but the main one seems to be zip code. Very few people, least of all the “reformies,” want to deal with that. They keep telling us that good schools magically appear and can be found where ever “people care about education.”

        Where again did you see that unicorn, navigio?

  9. Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

    " Two years ago, in the state’s first round of Race to the Top, the California Teachers Association discouraged local presidents from adding their signatures. And it's continued since then. This is now the fourth time in the last two years that California has failed to win K-12 Race to the Top money." Quote from: Huffington Post, 10/30/12 Gary Ravani is a retired teacher with 35 years of classroom experience. He is a retired teachers' union local … Read More

    ” Two years ago, in the state’s first round of Race to the Top, the California Teachers Association discouraged local presidents from adding their signatures.

    And it’s continued since then. This is now the fourth time in the last two years that California has failed to win K-12 Race to the Top money.”

    Quote from: Huffington Post, 10/30/12

    Gary Ravani is a retired teacher with 35 years of classroom experience. He is a retired teachers’ union local leader (local president) after 20 years of service. He is also a retired officer and member of the Executive Council of the CA Federation of Teachers (CFT) after 25 years of service. He is currently a member of the Educational Policy Committee of the CFT.

  10. Greg Geeting 1 year ago1 year ago

    The API could have been maintained, because it had a protocol for adding and modifying existing elements, which was called the "neutral introduction factor" (or NIF). Bringing in new elements and/or changing the relative weights of continuing elements was done so that no agency was "penalized." The changes came into the API system as "neutrals," and only an agency's growth or decline was measured and counted (for or against) the agency in calculating its subsequent … Read More

    The API could have been maintained, because it had a protocol for adding and modifying existing elements, which was called the “neutral introduction factor” (or NIF). Bringing in new elements and/or changing the relative weights of continuing elements was done so that no agency was “penalized.” The changes came into the API system as “neutrals,” and only an agency’s growth or decline was measured and counted (for or against) the agency in calculating its subsequent years’ APIs. The SBAC results – no matter what they might have been – would have made no difference in the API initially, only in subsequent years (depending on an agency’s growth or decline). Similarly, non-test-related measures, such as attendance, could have been introduced as neutrals, affecting APIs only in subsequent years. My guess is more that we’re looking at a philosophic difference between two Stanford University professors emeriti, Ed Haertel and Michael Kirst. Dr. Haertel, who was a principal force in the API’s development, felt a single number could be used to adequately rank schools and local educational agencies. Dr. Haertel found support among former Superintendent Jack O’Connell and State Board of Education member (and, at one time, its president) Reed Hastings, as well as the Legislature and former Governor Gray Davis. The Schwarzenegger administration stayed the course. Dr. Kirst, who is now president of the State Board, appears convinced that a single number is far too simplistic for institutions so complex as schools and LEAs, and the Legislature and Governor Brown appear to agree. Let’s hope all the effort being expended to abandon the API and revise the accountability system yields more than a relatively trivial difference in the public’s understanding. I fear the multiple measures may only serve to confuse, and that mainstream reporters – in their efforts to keep things simple (for the half dozen sentences of print, or the 30 seconds of air time, they might be allotted) – will find work-arounds to get back to the API concept of relative rankings.

    Replies

    • Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

      Greg:

      Nothing like grotesquely oversimplifying an important and complex subject like school performance so that it fits “half dozen sentences of print, or the 30 seconds of air time” in order to illuminate the public dialogue and inform policy. That’s a new motto I’m taking under consideration. On second thought, I don’t think I will after all.

  11. David B. Cohen 1 year ago1 year ago

    The headline doesn't seem to fit the story very well. Virtually no one wanted to use the option, so it doesn't seem that they're missing out - at least not in any meaningful numbers. I think when Romero and Huff and Parent Revolution were all gung ho about these policy shifts a few years ago, they seriously misunderstood what parents want - mainly, a good school, close to home. And they don't judge the quality … Read More

    The headline doesn’t seem to fit the story very well. Virtually no one wanted to use the option, so it doesn’t seem that they’re missing out – at least not in any meaningful numbers. I think when Romero and Huff and Parent Revolution were all gung ho about these policy shifts a few years ago, they seriously misunderstood what parents want – mainly, a good school, close to home. And they don’t judge the quality of the school according to the measures used by state legislators or bureaucrats. But I think Gary covered this pretty well.

    Torlakson, Kirst, Brown, and the legislature are handling accountability quite well. Moving these conversations to the local level through the LCAP is an idea that, if carried out effectively, could make schools and districts more responsive, and make accountability more nuanced and robust. Meanwhile, we can’t have it both ways with Common Core testing. New standards and new testing methods mean that we don’t know what the data means in the early going. Mike Kirst said a year or two ago that we’d need at least three years of full Common Core implementation to start making sense of the results. If you want to take new, unstable, ambiguous data and attach major consequences for schools and districts, that’s reckless, driven probably by distrust and an inclination to punish rather than support “failing” schools. The fact that test-and-punish accountability has proven to be a widespread failure for the past decade doesn’t seem to matter to some people, though.

  12. Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

    Several things about this article: First a note to Sarah. Your article states: "The Open Enrollment Act was part of a series of education reforms that took effect in 2010, part of the state’s effort at the time to qualify for federal Race to the Top funds – a grant program meant to reform teaching and learning throughout the states." Not your fault here Sarah, as it has become part of journalistic common practice to label anything … Read More

    Several things about this article:

    First a note to Sarah. Your article states: “The Open Enrollment Act was part of a series of education reforms that took effect in 2010, part of the state’s effort at the time to qualify for federal Race to the Top funds – a grant program meant to reform teaching and learning throughout the states.”

    Not your fault here Sarah, as it has become part of journalistic common practice to label anything dragged out to mess with the schools as being some kind of “reform.” As I’ve said before, if reform implies some kind of change that leads to improvement (which it does) then much of what has been done to the schools falls far from that definition. That all reform requires some change does not mean that all changes are reform.

    The act in question, as noted, was enacted to deal with Arne Duncan’s RTTT. I challenge anyone to find any kind of improvements that came to education as a direct result of RTTT.

    You do have the ten or so districts in CA that applied for and received, NCLB waivers based on “alignment” with RTTT goals. Two districts and superintendents are worthy of note here. Chris Steinhowser of Long beach has gone out of his way to collaborate with teachers and their union to mitigate the worst aspects of RTTT with great success. John Deasy, of LAUSD, went out of his way, as any Broad Academy graduate would do, to fully embrace all aspects of RTTT and he is now gone. Or rather he is now embracing other billionaires by working for the destructive Students Matter astro-turf cabal.

    It’s almost tiresome to keep repeating that pseudo-accountability measures, API and AYP included, resulted in no educational improvements. The AYP, as a function of NCLB, resulted in a flatlining of NAEP scores for a decade. NAEP scores, as in any other test score (and I do mean any) being the height of educational value of the self-styled reformers. These worthies couldn’t even achieve their own limited goals let alone actual education improvement. And, one more time, the nation’s highest scientific body, the NRC, found in a comprehensive meta-study that “reforms” of the NCLB type resulted in little to no measurable improvement in scores and inhibited learning because it narrowed and made impossible a well balanced curriculum.

    It is interesting that the original bill’s author, along with other usual suspects, are all now firmly ensconced in what we now know as the “schools suck industry.” Two things about that industry: 1) they are always wrong about everything having to do with education; and, 2) they all make a lot of money being wrong (so why quit now?).

    One totally unexplored reason why this current situation is of little real meaning to CA’s schools, parents, and children can be found in the yearly report on public opinion done by Phi Delta Kappan (a professional journal for those not in the profession) and the Gallup organization. The revealed facts are these: parents; overwhelmingly like their local school, like the teachers, and like the program the school offers. This also goes for local members of the community, grandparents, etc. If the public has knowledge of the local school they tend to like it. This is why professional operatives pushing Romero’s other treacherous act, Parent Trigger, have to sneak into communities and pass petitions that parents later want their names removed from because they feel they were bamboozled. It is notable that in the first case of Parent Trigger, when the charter company backing the move failed to wrest control of the school from the community, they opened a charter nearby and few parents actually chose to move their children to attend the charter.

    As has been revealed year after year in the Phi Delta Kappan survey, parents like their local school and local teachers. They are not that interested in test scores, the API, or the AYP. They are interested in the “culture” of the school and if the staff and teachers seem to care for the kids. Funny that what most parents feel intuitively aligns so nicely with what the legitimate education experts say about test scores. The scores don’t matter much.

    Replies

    • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

      Gary, CTA supported the RTTT application. Do you ever take any responsibility for union blunders?

    • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

      Two things:
      I don’t think everyone who uses the term ‘reform’ assumes it implies improvement. It’s a problem when there is a mismatch of terms.
      Some parents did care about the API, though admittedly they may also use it as an excuse for something else about a school they don’t like.

      • Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

        navigio: Reform really does mean "to improve." Check Webster's et al. SI Hayakawa, good semanticist-- poor college president and senator--said something like words, and their meanings, are the building blocks of our thinking. Sloppy use of words leads to sloppy thinking. As "liberal" was abused by the right to the point people began describing themselves as "progressive," and feminist has just plain been abused as a tool in the war on women, school reform was abducted … Read More

        navigio:

        Reform really does mean “to improve.” Check Webster’s et al. SI Hayakawa, good semanticist– poor college president and senator–said something like words, and their meanings, are the building blocks of our thinking. Sloppy use of words leads to sloppy thinking. As “liberal” was abused by the right to the point people began describing themselves as “progressive,” and feminist has just plain been abused as a tool in the war on women, school reform was abducted by the self-styled reformers to the point it is just about what I said it was: “any kind of messing with the schools.” NCLB is still called “reform” and it had a demonstrably negative series of effects on the the schools and kids and has put us behind by at least a decade in getting real reform ( i.e., improvement) going again.

        The professional right, and their billionaire owners, abuse words to keep us from paying attention to real problems and exploring real solutions. Time for that to stop. Phony “reform” is the curtain that needs to be pulled aside to pay attention to the pseudo-wizards of reforminess.

        Some parents do pay attention to the API, AYP, ad nauseam. Some think they were probed by space aliens too. I cited the Kappan report that demonstrates most parents with kids in school, quite wisely, don’t. And Kappan has been collecting reports, with very similar questions, for 30 years. Parent’s opinions of schools (and teachers!), regardless of test scores, that they actually know something about via experience, has never been higher. In the face of the media’s constant bombardment of chicken little, crisis in the schools, stories that is pretty good as well as telling.

        • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

          Could not agree more with the abuse of the meaning of words. Unfortunately it's not something that seems to be limited to particular groups. I intentionally avoided taking about the definition, rather said it's how people use it. And the definition of a word is eventually a result of consensus, even if that comes about via abuse (which it often does). Anyway, one problem that arises from that abuse is the disconnect. That exists regardless of … Read More

          Could not agree more with the abuse of the meaning of words. Unfortunately it’s not something that seems to be limited to particular groups.
          I intentionally avoided taking about the definition, rather said it’s how people use it. And the definition of a word is eventually a result of consensus, even if that comes about via abuse (which it often does).
          Anyway, one problem that arises from that abuse is the disconnect. That exists regardless of how ‘right’ one side is. 🙂

          • Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

            Navigio: Perhaps you are unaware how the right and its consultants has worked quite premeditatedly to distort the meaning of words and frame their messages. "Reform" was one of those words designated to be seen through a funhouse mirror to reflect beating up the schools and holding them and teachers "accountable" for condition beyond their control. Ignoring that critical 70% to 85% of "other school factors" and "out of school factors." This has become part … Read More

            Navigio:

            Perhaps you are unaware how the right and its consultants has worked quite premeditatedly to distort the meaning of words and frame their messages. “Reform” was one of those words designated to be seen through a funhouse mirror to reflect beating up the schools and holding them and teachers “accountable” for condition beyond their control. Ignoring that critical 70% to 85% of “other school factors” and “out of school factors.” This has become part of the current lexicon and known as “framing the message.”

            The right really stole a march on the left on this issue, and framing on the schools as “failing” (beginning with A Nation at Risk) was one of those key areas of purposeful distortion. Though the left works at it, sometimes using their own consultants (who is the Berkeley guy who wrote the book about framing with elephant in the tittle?), but we aren’t very good at it. Good propaganda seems to most easily flow from extremists. Another problem with the left, particularly in education, is that there is often an awareness of what words really mean and distorting those meanings is somehow offensive.

            I am well aware of how word meanings change over time, as the conventions of language do, and based on a kind of unconscious consensus. That is far different than the purposeful distortion of words practiced by the propagandists.

            • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

              I didnt say people didnt do it, I said its not necessarily limited to one group. And not to defend anyone, but since when are extremists only from the right (especially in this country)? It is important to understand that consensus-formed definitions do not take place on equal playing fields. Any time you have groups struggling over competing definitions, those favored by the dominant groups tend to win out (and note, sometimes that conflict is anything … Read More

              I didnt say people didnt do it, I said its not necessarily limited to one group.
              And not to defend anyone, but since when are extremists only from the right (especially in this country)?
              It is important to understand that consensus-formed definitions do not take place on equal playing fields. Any time you have groups struggling over competing definitions, those favored by the dominant groups tend to win out (and note, sometimes that conflict is anything but unconscious as should be pretty clear given recent happenings and public discourse). So not only might it be expected for someone who has long existed in a well-established field to see definitions from the outside as ‘propoganda’ (also making the increased usage of the term ‘reform’ by educational leaders a very dangerous thing in my view), but we even go so far as to refer to situations in which this ‘normal’ power dynamic is disrupted as a type of media bias in the form of false balance (interesting how that power dynamic is actually built into our concept of fairness). I would argue that this term has entered that realm. And btw, this is not intended to ‘defend’ anyone’s definition of the term, only to highlight what can happen when terms are challenged.
              Anyway, this is diverging from education policy now. For me it has gotten to the point that when someone uses the term ‘reform’, at least in the education realm, it’s now as if they instead had said “blah”.

            • Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

              Navigio:

              You state re the word reform: “it’s now as if they instead had said “blah”.” You are likely correct. My position is that’s not a good thing for reform, for education, or for informed discourse of any kind on any topic.

        • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

          Gee, and I thought progressive meant to be insured.

          So, are we in an era of real reform now? And if so, how so?

          • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

            No such thing anymore. The term has become meaningless. I do think the new idea of funding poverty schools at higher levels than non-is a significant and imp rtant change. To what extent it will lead to improvements I think it is impossible to say ahead of time

            • Don 1 year ago1 year ago

              I agree it is impossible to say since every district can do almost anything it wants rather than using the money for tried and true improvements.If the example of SIG is any indication, large amounts of cash led to virtually no improvement over 3 and more years, but much smaller amounts is expected to produce results? Granted, the four improvement models were not exactly the most enlightened, but there was plenty of opportunity to make … Read More

              I agree it is impossible to say since every district can do almost anything it wants rather than using the money for tried and true improvements.If the example of SIG is any indication, large amounts of cash led to virtually no improvement over 3 and more years, but much smaller amounts is expected to produce results? Granted, the four improvement models were not exactly the most enlightened, but there was plenty of opportunity to make real improvements leading to achievement gains with all that money. Instead, school leaders never speak of SIG as if it never happened, hoping it will go away to save themselves further embarrassment. So, Navigio, you are right. Adding SC money leaves no assurances of any real improvement, whereas we could have lowered class sizes with greater expectation of results. As you know the LCFF law specifically allowed districts and their union partners to override CSR. To make matters worse, if some districts do succeed there is no provision in the law to scale those improvements statewide. Why set up a la statewide laboratory of innovation without mechanisms to capitalize on success?

            • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

              well, not being able to tell ahead of time doesnt have to be a result of a failed policy. It could also be that we dont know how to measure improvement, for example.
              Anyway, I added the 2nd sentence to highlight the fact that if ‘reform’ implies improvement, it cant be used to describe a change that hasnt yet been measured. 😉

            • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

              excuse me, ‘…the last sentence….’

            • Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

              Navigio: Recall there was a 2008 study (actually a collection of studies) "Getting Down to Facts," and there have been several other studies over the years looking at school spending defined as "adequacy." In Getting Down (Yo!), which seemed to have some solid academics behind them, a study recommended that CA increase school spending by $32 billion above the pre-recession level cuts. In a rather complex formula, that study used the demographics of CA's student … Read More

              Navigio:

              Recall there was a 2008 study (actually a collection of studies) “Getting Down to Facts,” and there have been several other studies over the years looking at school spending defined as “adequacy.” In Getting Down (Yo!), which seemed to have some solid academics behind them, a study recommended that CA increase school spending by $32 billion above the pre-recession level cuts. In a rather complex formula, that study used the demographics of CA’s student population and some calculation to see just how much it would take to bring CA’s average student up to “proficient” on the academic standards of that time. (I can’t help mentioning another study in the group that asserted it would take $2 to $3 Trillion,yes, with a “T,” to do the same thing. That study was general “poo-pooed” by the media, though no one actually attacked the study’s fundamentals.) This methodology, in the $32 billion study, is basically the same as the basic arguments in adequacy studies, unsuccessful in CA courts but quite successful in many other states. (Around 27 states as I recall.)

              This methodology seems much more realistic than simply looking at the possible impacts of LCFF. LCFF, short of the “basic aid” districts and wealthier districts that pass substantial parcel taxes, will do some necessary and moral “leveling of the playing field.” Not quite as moral and necessary as funding CA’s schools at “adequate” levels (see above), but it’s a start. So we are in agreement there.

              In that “Getting Down” was Schwarzenegger Initiative, something had to be done to make sure that the study didn’t reveal anything like the fact that the Governator’s VLF cut had put a $4 billion dollar hole in the state budget that compounded over time, or that more spending might be needed for the schools. So the Hoover Institution got involved in the roll-out of the meta-study, and through their usual flimflammery the results ($32 billion more school spending needed!) was shoved behind the usual curtain (with the help of a complacent media) and there was a lot of bloviating about management and structural changes to the schools and CDE, yadda, yadda, and the whole point was lost in space.

              Since I am, at least vaguely on the subject, let me take an opportunity to say something about Governor Schwarzenegger. I was in a meeting with the Governor re upcoming cuts to eduction and he was going on about the cuts only “being those cuts far from the classroom.” (BTW, as he spoke I could see his staffers looking at each other and rolling their eyes.) We at the table, about a dozen of us from various education constituencies, told him that was basically impossible. There wasn’t a dollar in cuts that wasn’t going to be felt directly and negatively in the classroom. As a part of my short “speech” I mentioned that I was a classroom teacher of 35 years of experience. The meeting concluded a couple of minutes later. At that point the Governor jumped to his feet and quickly moved over to me (about six feet away) and vigorously (what else) shook my hand and thanked me, profusely I would suggest, for dedicating my career to CA’s students. Now, his being the Governor, a billionaire, an international movie star, etc, he didn’t have to do that at all. I attribute it to him being, not too far below the surface, a decent human being. As he later revealed he sought the office as something of a lark, and his policies did real damage to CA and CA’s schools and I have a hard time forgiving him for all of that. That being said, I have kind of a soft place in my heart for the Governator.

    • CarolineSF 1 year ago1 year ago

      The San Francisco Chronicle stylebook cautions journalists to be careful about using "reform," because one person's "reform" may not be another person's positive change. Should all writers follow the Chronicle stylebook's guidance on this? Read More

      The San Francisco Chronicle stylebook cautions journalists to be careful about using “reform,” because one person’s “reform” may not be another person’s positive change. Should all writers follow the Chronicle stylebook’s guidance on this?

      • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

        Kudos to then for recognizing the problem. And yes. 🙂

  13. Don 1 year ago1 year ago

    This new API development process reminds me of the eastern span of the San Francisco Bay Bridge. Torlakson is diddling around in no particular hurry and that's just fine by his benefactors. The API was always a work in progress. Just put one together and fiddle with it down the line. I suspect that he wants to see just how low the SBAC scores will be so the damage can be minimized. But putting too … Read More

    This new API development process reminds me of the eastern span of the San Francisco Bay Bridge. Torlakson is diddling around in no particular hurry and that’s just fine by his benefactors. The API was always a work in progress. Just put one together and fiddle with it down the line. I suspect that he wants to see just how low the SBAC scores will be so the damage can be minimized. But putting too low an emphasis on academics makes the “accountability” a sham. He’s just trying to avoid a political minefield by doing nothing instead. That also reminds me of his benefactors.

    Replies

    • Tom 1 year ago1 year ago

      Bought and paid for Don. We have the best government that money can buy…

    • ann 1 year ago1 year ago

      Exactly. Slowly whittling away any accountability at the behest of the unions…..

      • Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

        Ann: The biggest problem facing schools in CA is (prior to union backed Prop 30 as a partial solution)) is poor funding. Just do a close read of "States in Motion" on this site for an explanation. One of the key culprits in the funding situation is Prop 13. The voters of CA (not this one) supported Prop13, that has primarily benefited corporations and not homeowners, and has undermined CA's schools, social services, roads and … Read More

        Ann:

        The biggest problem facing schools in CA is (prior to union backed Prop 30 as a partial solution)) is poor funding. Just do a close read of “States in Motion” on this site for an explanation. One of the key culprits in the funding situation is Prop 13. The voters of CA (not this one) supported Prop13, that has primarily benefited corporations and not homeowners, and has undermined CA’s schools, social services, roads and other infrastructure ever since. Since the voters did the deed, do you want to hold them accountable?

  14. Parent News Opinion 1 year ago1 year ago

    I believe as one parent that just because the California Department of Education did not plan well to ensure that there was some kind of academic measuring stick for the worst 1,000 schools in California, should not mean that parents should be denied the Open Enrollment Act approved mandates. Such decisions by the leaders of the ClaiforniamDepartment of Education, in my opinion, behind closed doors, violate, in my opinion as a parent, the trust between the … Read More

    I believe as one parent that just because the California Department of Education did not plan well to ensure that there was some kind of academic measuring stick for the worst 1,000 schools in California, should not mean that parents should be denied the Open Enrollment Act approved mandates.

    Such decisions by the leaders of the ClaiforniamDepartment of Education, in my opinion, behind closed doors, violate, in my opinion as a parent, the trust between the StatemDepartment do Education and the general public.

    I have taken time to call the C.D.E. today to speak with Ms Singh and her phone is on voice mail, and I left a message and asked for a call back.

    I have taken time to call the California Center for Parent Empowerment, and I told them to review this edsource article,,and I asked to join their organization and receive their newsletter.

    I believe that the California Department of Education, overseen by Mr. Torlakson and the Stare Board of Education has violated the trust of the American parents and children in California by pulling out the Open Enrollment mandates, and it is very sad and depressing.

    Replies

    • Parent News Opinion Update 1 year ago1 year ago

      No response back from Ms Singh from the California Department of Education. also, it is very important for all of us to know that if the status of all Open Enrollment Schools have been removed (what I interpret Reporter Tully to be writing in this article,) then it seems to follow that the status of all program improvement schools may or already have been (in my opinion, because I see no announcements on the C.D.E. website) … Read More

      No response back from Ms Singh from the California Department of Education.

      also, it is very important for all of us to know that if the status of all Open Enrollment Schools have been removed (what I interpret Reporter Tully to be writing in this article,) then it seems to follow that the status of all program improvement schools may or already have been (in my opinion, because I see no announcements on the C.D.E. website) dropped.

      This means low educationally functioning schools will thrive in my opinion, with, in my opinion, perhaps the C.D.E. and the State Board of Education just looking on as,sort of bystanders and perhaps redirecting parents who call to the C.D.E. to just put a sock in it , so to speak, and speak not to the C.D.E. about your difficulties, bit instead just file uniform complaint procedures with your local school entity if you as a parent can decider if state statutes are violated, or Ed code.

      this is a form of stifling bureaucracy, in my opinion and a pulling away of oversight, for until, California, and if California wishes to have testing be meaningful.

      stagnation of high quality learning may be currently taking place with a controlled and planned lack of oversight.

      • Parent News Opinion 1 year ago1 year ago

        Update. Still no response from my voice mail to Ms. Jenny Singh who is working for the California Department of Education as a spokesperson with regard to this statement made in the article, which, I , as a parent disagree with... . Ms. Singh is said to say, in this article,"“We don’t really have a choice,” Singh said. “You can’t produce something when you don’t have the data.” So, my concern is who oversees this decision … Read More

        Update. Still no response from my voice mail to Ms. Jenny Singh who is working for the California Department of Education as a spokesperson with regard to this statement made in the article, which, I , as a parent disagree with…
        .
        Ms. Singh is said to say, in this article,”“We don’t really have a choice,” Singh said. “You can’t produce something when you don’t have the data.” So, my concern is who oversees this decision making by Ms. Singh and the California Department of Education. Is it the State Board of Education. Should not some kind of proposal have been put on the S.B.E. recent meeting agenda to address this gigantic change in removal of any Open Enrollment Act requirements to the children and parents attending the currently designated 1,000 lowest preforming schools in California (the Open Enrollment Act really for transparency, should be called, THE LOWEST 1000 PREFORMING SCHOOLS IN CALIFORNIA.
        So, no response back from Ms. Singh. I do thank the EdSource reporter Ms. Tully to get the information out.

        I as a parent have tried to locate this change at the C.D.E. by some kind of update posting on the C.D.E. website and I do not see any posting of this change when I type “Open Enrollment Schools” in the C.D.E. search bar.
        I do not always agree that EdSource is even handed in the way it reports, however, I think that this is good solid reporting here. I just think that only about ten to fifteen people log into this EdSource website a day and their names are Don, Manuel, Gary, Floyd, and Navigio, and some more too but very few and EdSource needs more log in by parents.

        Dear P.T.A. leadership, can you inform all parents and teachers about EdSource in your P.T.A. mailouts as a good source of information for the upheaval of educational change in California, can you?

  15. Parent 1 year ago1 year ago

    The suspension of the API and endless delays of reinstating it denies students access to a quality public education. The best solution for right now would be to immediately allow all students to transfer to any school that has availability at any time, and not to deny them choice because of the inability of the state board and CDE to fulfill their state constitutional responsibilities. Why hurt the children because of the adults’ actions?

    Replies

    • Sarah Tully 1 year ago1 year ago

      Thank you for reading! There are other options for transferring kids out of neighborhood schools, depending on where you are. But this particular avenue is suspended.

      Sarah

    • Tom 1 year ago1 year ago

      I agree with you completely Parent! Furthermore, there are schools with known poor teachers, and if you child gets one of them, there should be no roadblocks to prevent classroom and/or school transfers! It is a hassle for the Administrators, but the child and the parents should not be penalized for the inability of the public school system to effectively deal with poor educators.

    • Gary Ravani 1 year ago1 year ago

      Parent: What a plan. Why we could have all the kids in San Francisco transfer to the schools in Los Angeles and vice versa. Transportation issues could be a problem, by why get all hung up on details when "choice" is at stake? BTW, did you know, looking at "white flight" from public to privatized schools in the south when Brown v. (and reluctant federal enforcement) was implemented, the word of choice for the segregationists as justification … Read More

      Parent:

      What a plan. Why we could have all the kids in San Francisco transfer to the schools in Los Angeles and vice versa. Transportation issues could be a problem, by why get all hung up on details when “choice” is at stake?

      BTW, did you know, looking at “white flight” from public to privatized schools in the south when Brown v. (and reluctant federal enforcement) was implemented, the word of choice for the segregationists as justification [sic] for their actions was…wait for it…choice? Of course today, due to economic segregation and the impact of charters we have schools more racially segregated than they were at the time of Brown v. Board. That being said, the fact that this situation violates everything that was accomplished during the Civil Rights Era and, many would agree, also violates what America should stand for is, I guess, small potatoes, when compared to…choice.

      • Parent 1 year ago1 year ago

        So you think no one should have the choice of where to send their children? They should not even be able to send them to a charter school, only to a single district school?

      • FloydThursby1941 1 year ago1 year ago

        Gary, that is clearly a concern but this is the fault of white racism. Whites pretend to be nonracist but it is clear, wherever there are many black and Latino kids, whites avoid, they move or go private. In Oakland many go to white public elementary schools then go private once kids get to middle school where it will be more diverse. If everyone's white, public school is fine, but once there … Read More

        Gary, that is clearly a concern but this is the fault of white racism. Whites pretend to be nonracist but it is clear, wherever there are many black and Latino kids, whites avoid, they move or go private. In Oakland many go to white public elementary schools then go private once kids get to middle school where it will be more diverse. If everyone’s white, public school is fine, but once there are black and Latino kids, suddenly Waldorf, Catholicism, Montesori or some other excuse becomes crucial.

        Charters have nothing to do with this. Charters are not about segregation. They have to let people in by lottery. Charters can’t charge money. Charters often educate primarily minority students. Gateway in SF is under 15% white, as is KIPP. This is not at all a means to add to segregation. The purpose is to get around the damaging dictatorship of the union orthodoxy, they can fire bad teachers, they can require kids to come in Saturday and stay late if they are behind and follow certain rules of behavior. Charters are most valuable in helping kids who have atrocious home lives and need to put more effort into their education.

        I think you are creating a false dichotomy here. Please visit KIPP and Gateway in SF and tell me they are about segregation.

        The biggest reason most poor people stay poor is they never change their ways. Charters are a way to push for change in effort, the way kids treat teachers, and the education they receive. It is an effort to break the cycle. There are many which are very integrated. The KIPP and Harlem Zone schools mainly serve black and Latino kids and get better scores for them. They provide a better solution than any reform proposed by the proponents of the status quo.

        • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

          And guns have nothing to do with murder. Nothing is an exclusive factor. Everything comes with a tradeoff. When implementing a policy, you assess the tradeoffs that result from the given circumstances. The 'inventor' of the charter concept disowned the movement because he realized it was being co-opted for a different means. Doesnt that tell you something? The fact is, the vast majority of charter parents have no idea how 'the dictatorship of union orthodoxy' actually … Read More

          And guns have nothing to do with murder.
          Nothing is an exclusive factor. Everything comes with a tradeoff. When implementing a policy, you assess the tradeoffs that result from the given circumstances. The ‘inventor’ of the charter concept disowned the movement because he realized it was being co-opted for a different means. Doesnt that tell you something?
          The fact is, the vast majority of charter parents have no idea how ‘the dictatorship of union orthodoxy’ actually impacts them (and even those who think they know, rarely do). Instead, they’ve been convinced that there is a better and safer learning opportunity where there are fewer poor people and/or people of color. Where charters do not segregate by race, they segregate by some other metric. You cannot deny that while accusing others of false dichotomies.
          But more importantly than what happens within the charter sector, charter policy increases segregation and concentrations in traditional public schools. In fact, all school choice tends to do that.
          This does not mean you cant argue for all the choice you want (its not black and white after all). You just dont get to deny that it also has a negative–often significantly negative–effect. You also dont get to ignore the claims that integration is one of the most effective ways to improve the academic achievement of our lowest performers (as well as perhaps being the only hope of ever getting past many of our cultural woes).
          Well, actually I guess you can do that. But it won’t fix anything, and will probably even make things worse.

    • navigio 1 year ago1 year ago

      Because that would hurt the children as a result of adults’ actions.

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