Monthly Archives: October 2012

Random drug testing needed at News Journal re: Education / RTTT

Delawareans should re-elect Markell and Denn: News Journal Opinion /Our View

Gov. Markell also has taken on educational reform. Under him, Delaware was a big winner in the federal Race to the Top money. The administration instituted a new student assessment system and an evaluation program for teachers.

Markell bullied local school boards into signing the Race to The Top MOU with threats of state education budget cuts and forcing local taxpayers to fund new state education regulations aligned with Race to The Top. As far as the new student assessment system, DCAS was already in the pipeline without Race to The Top and replaced DSTP. The only change in teacher evaluations was handing them Xanx befor bending them over. Also Markell cut a deal with Judas to help pour the Race to The Top kool-aid.

Will they work? His opponents say all he has done is create a bigger bureaucracy and a complicated system that is choking education in the state. But Gov. Markell didn’t make the Race to the Top rules and the student assessment system is a great improvement over what went before it. In addition, the administration managed to develop a teacher evaluation system with the help of the teachers union. That is something other states have failed miserably at.

Markell added six-figure $$ administration job at Delaware DOE creating the RTTT / School turnaround unit. Markell agreed to the rules for Race to The Top a federal competitive grant “NOT” a federal mandate. The new assessment system had nothing to do with Race to The Top. “The help of the teacher union” with the help of Judas who was rewarded with a DE DOE job. Shame on her!

School improvements need time to develop. The same is true for the bold strokes of the Fisker and Bloom deals. If the world’s economy were humming along, if our students all came from well-tended families that read to them and encouraged learning, Mr. Markell’s efforts could easily be dismissed. But that is not our world.

I think its time to send in the drug dogs at the News Journal to sniff-out the crack. The only bold strokes Markell is making is with his Johnson.

That is why we recommend the re-election of Jack Markell. He has brought a sense of energy to the governor’s office. He has attacked problems and he has found solutions.

The only solution Markell has found is in his hand. If Markell wants to stake his claim on successes shouldn’t we hold him accountable for the failures within DE DOE Charter School Unit re: Pencader? Markell hires a gym teacher with three years experience in teaching gym and two years as a school administrator. Doesn’t Delaware’s school children deserve a high quality proven secretary of education?

The position is more effective if the lieutenant governor worked with the administration.

Didn’t we try that with Minner / Carney and Minner rolled Carney under bus for Jack Markell. Its obvious the Delaware GOP is not serious about unseating Markell and perhaps there is a deal being cut for 2016. The Delaware GOP led by Pete and Re-Pete holds up the stop sign when confronting Markell on his flawed education plan aka Wall Street ponzi Scheme. Education represents nearly one-third the state budget and it seems to be a non issue with the right! Republicans traditionally support less federal intervention in state and local control yet, in Delaware the power brokers on the Republican Party seem to be on board with Race to The Top giving Markell a free pass. Race to the Top “grant” funding will end soon and because of state education regulation are aligned with RTTT local taxpayers will fill the financial whole left when the grant is gone.

Mr. Denn, in his own right, has been a leader in making schools more effective through cost controls and programs for all students.

And chaining Matt Denn to Markell’s coattails will be the downfall of Matt Denn. Markell is a user and he’ll step on the backs of poor childrens’ heads to obtain his  egotistic capitalistic political goals. Those local politicians who are awl-stuck and rubs shoulders with Markell will walk away with Markell shit all of themselves.

When is comes to education, Jack Markell is worst Delaware governor on education and thinks nothing of participating in the Race to The Top Wall Street ponzi scheme. And you can bet the card carrying capitalist is cashing in on this ponzi scheme. 

Markell will in another term with 68% of the votes if not more. Denn will win at a higher margin then Markell! However, if Denn republican opponent keeps working she’ll be a shoe-in come 2016. I am not so sure Denn will advance come 2016 because Markell failed education reform will be exposed and Fisker in no way will meet it’s promise with the loan grant. Also, you can bet Markell will convert that loan into a grant even if Fisker fails to meet promises made.

So for all of you who toast Markell on his 2nd term win enjoy the piss in the champagne. Yes Steve I did vote for Markell re: first-term. So I know what the piss taste like. 

Delaware needs to amend it’s discrimination laws re: sexual orientation

On June o4, 2009 Governor Markell signed in to law, Senate Bill #121

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLES 6, 9, 18, 19, 25, AND 29 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO DISCRIMINATION IN EMPLOYMENT, PUBLIC WORKS CONTRACTING, HOUSING, EQUAL ACCOMMODATIONS AND THE INSURANCE BUSINESS

The heart of this legislation is, “As such, this Act would forbid discrimination against a person on the basis of sexual orientation in housing, employment, public works contracting, public accommodations, and insurance.”

After years of blogging Kilroy’s has a pretty good outreach. All are welcome here and Kilroy’s mission is rooted in fighting for social justice. The change in this law needs to add transgenders “gender identity” next to sexual orientation. 

Does anyone see any objections to such an amendment ?

If you want to help this cause please contact the sponsors and cosponsors of Senate Bill 121 and ask that they amend it.

Delaware Secretary of Education Murphy needs to step-down

Pencader slips in Special Meeting with a 1 pm start time? Trying to Disenfranchise Parents, Tax Payers? from Children and Educators First

1. Did Pencader provide seven days notice? http://pencadercharter.net/busfin/ The meeting would have to be posted by 1 pm on October 26, 2012.  Unlike every other item on the website, one cannot see the posting date/time of this event. Thus, one could argue that it wasn’t and the deletion of the posting info is intentional..

The appointment of Mark Murphy as Delaware’s Secretary of Education has been a train-wreck. Three years of teaching experience in physical education and two years experience as school administrator is poor qualifications for such a position.

I cannot believe Pencader Charter School board of directors are still playing games with meetings re: proper public notification. Also, as of this date no annual 2012-2013 budget has been posted, no current Citizen Budget Oversight Committee reports or minutes have been posted and there are serious question to the integrity of those sitting on the CBOC. 

If you listen to the Delaware State Board of Education October’s meeting recording you’ll hear DE DOE Charter Schools Unit manager say it won’t be until February 2013 before the state board votes on any action regarding Pencader “under review” status. Pencader is on probation from the last review and shouldn’t be afforded the same lengthy due process. I think all this DE DOE incompetence is code for, we don’t have the capacity to make hard decision to ensure quality education, open transparency and fiscal responsibility to the taxpayers.

It is quite clear the DE DOE Charter School Unit has lost it’s capacity to be effective in regards to charter school oversight and accountability. A private is only as effective as his general. It is quite clear Delaware’s Secretary of Education lack leadership skills that inspires others or effectively lead others. He either needs to change the capacity structure of DE DOE or step-down.   

Gov. Markell lowers driving ban from level 2 to level 1

Gov. Jack Markell is easing a driving ban issued for Superstorm Sandy but still cautions drivers that many roads are impassable.

The “level 2” ban for all but essential personnel was changed at 8:30 a.m. to a “level 1” warning urging motorists to use

( Level One Driving Warning: Drivers are discouraged from operating a motor vehicle on the state’s roadways, unless there is a significant safety, health or business reason to do so.) 

Tracking Delaware Gov. Markell’s hurricane performance

So far Delaware Governor Jack Markell earns a Kilroy Gold Star for his leadership in preparing for Hurricane Sandy and her evil nor’easter stepbrother. I’ll admit (Steve) I was concern Markell would put business interest before needed action to serve the citizens. We all need to be off the roads and allow movement of those protecting and serving us in these hours of need. It appears Governor Markell has invested 100% of himself in dealing with this crisis that honestly is just starting. Surely as the winds increases services restoring power will be disruptive. I am confident Gov. Markell is working on action plan to move out once conditions are safe for all responders to those crisis.

These are the times when leadership is really defined!

Power starting to go out in Delaware re: Hurricane Sandy

Here is a link to Delmarva Power’s interactive power outage map

I’ve been watching Delmarva’s power outage map for the last 24 hours and Delmarva has been doing a good job responding. Most outages only impact a few homes. However, I am now seeing a few area in the 100’s and wide spread, statewide. Things are going to get worst with increased winds and ground saturation. 

Do make note with increased winds Delmarva will restrict equipment re: men in bucket trucks and ladders. So if your power goes out be prepared to go without for many hours. 

Please support Delaware State Police request re: Level 1 driving warning

Update 11 pm: Governor Markell ups State of Emergency to Level Two starting 5 am Monday morning:

Level Two Driving Restriction: Travel on the roads is restricted to emergency workers, public utilities, healthcare providers including hospital staff, private sector food and fuel deliveries, and those industries, companies or organization that have been provided a waiver, including businesses with pressing continuity and operational issues.

Delaware Institutes Level One Driving Warning as Sandy Approaches by Delaware State Police News Room on Sunday, October 28, 2012 at 7:29pm ·

Smyrna, DE – Hurricane Sandy’s approach will make Delaware’s roadways more dangerous, leading Governor Jack Markell to implement a statewide “Level One Driving Warning,” which encourages motorists to cease any non-emergency travel beginning at 8:00 pm tonight.

“The storm is getting closer, the roads more dangerous and the need for caution greater. If there’s not a critical need for you to be on the roads, stay off of them,” Markell said. “I encourage employers to think seriously about following the state’s lead and allowing non-essential employees to remain home tomorrow. Emergency personnel are working hard to meet the storm’s challenge. Don’t give them the extra work of needing to come to your rescue,” Markell said.

Governor Markell signed legislation in 2010 giving the state greater flexibility to increase public safety by limiting travel during times of emergency. The three levels are:

· Level One Driving Warning: Drivers are discouraged from operating a motor vehicle on the state’s roadways, unless there is a significant safety, health or business reason to do so. 

I hired someone to clean my gutters and look what they did!

I hired someone to clean my gutters re: pending hurricane Sandy. I said, clear my roof!

Is Newark Charter “high school” setting stage for specific interest enrollment?

Checkout Newark Charter high school’s enrollment application re: page 2

1. Please indicate your Academy and World Language Preference.

2. The following are to be completed by student (please type of print you responses): Explain your reason for the choices above & why is Newark Charter School a good fit for you?

* Responses are not used as part of the acceptance criteria for the school.

Kilroy says, so why in the hell ask the questions? Perhaps I can see some importance to question 1. However, responses requested for question 2 seems to be probing for specific interest which in not part of New Newark Charter’s approved admission preferences such as with the 5 mile radius. Are these question asked when a student is applying to a real public school?  

OMG!!! More jousting re: Newark Charter School

Looks like the comment thread that flat-lined back in March just found a new heartbeat 

Newark Charter modification application might be in jeopardy Posted on March 26, 2012 by kilroysdelaware

Go here to see …………..

The Delaware way re: state of emergencies

Being born and raised in Delaware I can tell you sometimes Delaware’s state of emergencies are a joke

(12) Restrict the use or operation of motor vehicles on Delaware roads, including but not limited to, highways, express highways, roadways, and private roads as defined in § 101 of Title 21. The levels of restriction of the use or operation of motor vehicles during a state of emergency shall be as follows:

a. Level 3 Driving Ban: A “Level 3 Driving Ban” shall mean that no person shall operate a motor vehicle on Delaware roadways when a Level 3 Driving Ban has been activated, except for those persons designated as first responders and essential personnel, including public utilities as defined in § 102(2) of Title 26 and operators of snow removal equipment employed or contracted by a public or private entity, pursuant to this chapter and the plans set forth there under, and by executive order of the Governor. All businesses, professional offices, organizations, entities, etc. shall be encouraged to take appropriate protective actions to protect their citizens, customers, and employees by termination of operations or shelter in place. An employer of a public or private entity shall not terminate, reprimand, discipline, or in any way commit any adverse employment action against an employee who, as a result of the activation of a Level 3 Driving Ban, fails or refuses to report to work during the pendency of the driving ban. Any person or entity in violation of an activated Level 3 Driving Ban under this subsection shall be penalized pursuant to § 3125 of this title.

b. Level 2 Driving Restriction: A “Level 2 Driving Restriction” shall mean that no person shall operate a motor vehicle on Delaware roadways when a Level 2 Driving Restriction has been activated, except for persons designated as essential personnel including operators of snow removal equipment employed or contracted by a public or private entity. “Essential personnel” for purposes of this subsection shall mean those employees and/or personnel who are necessary to maintain the core functions of a government body or entity, and to maintain the health and safety of the people in Delaware by providing services provided by public utilities as defined in § 102(2) of Title 26 healthcare services, and food and fuel deliveries during a state of emergency, regardless of whether they are employed by a public or private entity. A waiver from a Level 2 Driving Restriction may be granted when a significant safety, health or business necessity is shown for issuing such a waiver. The Secretary of the Department of Safety and Homeland Security shall promulgate rules and regulations necessary to carry out the provisions of this subsection. An employer or entity which has not been granted a waiver shall not terminate, reprimand, discipline, or in any way commit any adverse employment action against an employee who, as a result of the activation of the a Level 2 Driving Restriction, fails or refuses to report to work during the pendency of the driving restriction. Any person or entity who violates an activated level 2 driving restriction under this subsection shall be in violation of § 4176D of Title 21.

c. Level 1 Driving Warning: A “Level 1 Driving Warning” shall mean that any person operating a motor vehicle when a Level 1 Driving Warning has been activated shall exercise extra caution in the operation of their motor vehicle. Nonessential employees, regardless of whether employed by a public or private entity, are encouraged not to operate a motor vehicle on the State’s roadways when a Level 1 Driving Warning has been activated, unless there is a significant safety, health or business reason to do so.

With Hurricane Sandy approaching what would trigger a Level 3 total driving ban? For surely weren’t no going to see snow! So there will be no need for snow removal equipment. So its down to power-outages, flooding, down trees, down wires, blowing debris and traffic lights out due to power-outage.

School are usually the first organizations to close. Business for the most part do so voluntarily. But for a Delaware governor to declare Level 3 driving ban takes  allot. It looks like Monday trough Tuesday is going to be a mess and risky travel for anyone. In my opinion there should be a Level 3 driving ban for this time frame. We need to let utility crews do their jobs and let emergency worker do their jobs. We shouldn’t be on the road adding to the workload of those workers and police.   

Delaware governors are reluctant to call for a full state of emergency because business interest complain. I see it this way, if the governor is so concerned about state workers whom many are given the day off during events like this then governor should show the same concern for the citizens of Delaware. For many its not an option to stay home because many employers will hold employees accountable for a no show. Those who can make it in are often given a gold star for their efforts. At a time where jobs are hard to come by and keep many employees concern with their own safety will put it at risk fearing they would lose their jobs or have a negative mark against their employment record. 

Lets say the governor did declare a level 3 driving ban. Many people will still take to the roads and police will turn the other way. For as long as I can remember, Delaware’s state of emergency when it comes to the roads aren’t respected. 

Delaware Governor Markell said this re: WDEL;

“But Governor Markell isn’t asking you to leave right now, not just yet because he says a state of emergency can have a devastating impact on people’s lives and businesses.”  

I see no reason why there should be a business consideration when it comes to the health, safety and welfare of Delaware citizens. Sure a state of emergency will be an inconvenience on people’s lives. However, what about the risk imposed on emergency workers? At a time of great emergency for the community I don’t see how devastating a day or two of asking people to stay of the road will be to them.

“We only want to be in one when it’s necessary, and so should we declare one, you can be certain that it’s because it’s necessary,” says Markell.

Describe “necessary” ?   

Delaware Autistic Program teacher not guilty

Teacher found not guilty Educator cleared of offensive touching charge Written by robin brown The News Journal

A teacher charged four months ago with offensively touching an autistic student has been found not guilty.

Danielle E. Finlay, 31, of Glasgow, told The News Journal she was looking forward to returning to teaching as soon as possible.

After the clear dispute over the facts was established, LeTang said, “The judge said, ‘She’s not guilty,’ and he’s right.”

Read the entire story here …………….

I hope the News Journal follows through on all stories where teachers are accused of crimes. Fair is fair, we see the reports and debate them but its nice to know the final legal outcome.

Will states be able to manipulate cut scores re: Smarter Balanced Assessment?

Starting school year 2013-2014 the Smarter Balanced Assessment will replacing Delaware’s DACS assessment / hold the teacher accountable to the test. So now we move into a nationalized standardize test controlled by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. Just like with DCAS this new save the world test needs to go through field tests and a pilot program (this year 2012-2013) and by Summer 2015  “Final achievement standards for the summative assessment verified and adopted”. See the timelines for yourself. Some now we go from DSTP to DCAS to SBA to a apples, oranges and now bananas skewed cross-year data. FYI sports fans, Delaware will be spending millions during this transition. But now the big question is, will Delaware be able to manipulate the cuts scores to control the data outcome? Want about the pilot testing piggybacking off DCAS? Don’t you think our students are tested enough?  

You can bet your ass greater financial pressure will be placed on local school taxpayers to back-fill what the state and feds fails to cover. 

Most people visiting here other than in the know educators including most state legislators don’t have a clue what is going on and the impact SBA will have on students, educators who actually work in the classrooms, students, parents and taxpayers. But the benefit to America is, all students in all partners states will be using the same textbooks, working on the same chapter at the same time and most likely be taking bathroom breaks on the same schedule.

By time SBA is implemented Race to The Top funding will be long gone and we’ll shift to an RTTT exit program and onto another reform program. In 2016 Markell will either have filled Tom “Skeletor” Carper’s senate seat or perhaps U.S. Ambassador to China. Who will be left behind to clean up after the circus? You got it, parents and the taxpayers. Also by time 2016 rolls around all the investments on new computer at the school level needed to take DCAS and this online SBA test will need to be replaced.    

OMG!!!! Christine O’Donnell hits a Grand Slam