Lame-Duck Jack Markell won’t take action on “Wilmington’s” education recommendations! Just more kicking the can down the road!

Committee: Take Christina, Colonial out of Wilmington Matthew Albright, The News Journal

Wilmington’s school system needs sweeping changes if its children are to escape the poverty and crime threatening their futures, a committee created by Gov. Jack Markell said Monday.

The first mistake was Jack Markell’s involvement! Many of the existing problems are a result of Markell failed education agenda. I ‘ll spare the YouTube video but Markell did acknowledge re-segregation via charter schools and flawed charter admission laws allowing discrimination re: Specific Interest charter admission preferences. The there is the Delaware Department of Education who lack “capacity” for understanding law and part of their mission to provide technical assistance.    

The Wilmington Education Advisory Council’s recommendations would drastically rework how the city’s schools are managed, funded, and operated. They include: 

Removing the Christina and Colonial School Districts from the city

Yea one way to get rid of the amazing board member John Young. Can’t find anyone to beat him at election time, just dissolve the district 🙂  “Christina, especially the Christina School Board, has a reputation for clashing with the state, sometimes attempting to derail state leaders’ plans.” This shows you how fucked up the News Journal is and how it’s bias to Markell.

Placing a hold on the approval of new charter schools until the state can design a comprehensive plan for how they should grow

Well that can be done within 10 days re: legislative action but odds are you won’t see any legislation calling for a moratorium. This would conflict with the states NCLB wavier that allows the option to close a traditional school and reopen as a charter.  

Changing the way schools are funded in Delaware to funnel more resources to high-poverty schools

Easy solution, fund traditional and charter school the same way as votechs. However, there is the capital funding issue funding for “charter corporations”.  

Creating an office of education in Wilmington government to give city officials more say in what happens in schools.

State legislation should be enacted giving Wilmington authority to authorize charter schools and to transfer existing charter schools located in Wilmington as their charter renewals comes due. So which legislator will be brave enough to get this legislation rolling?

We hear all about mayoral control of public schools so why not give Wilmington that mayoral control?

Folks it will take at least three years to see any action on this plan! And certainly you don’t want Markell and his band of Rodel and Teach for America clones involvement. The best thing to do is, enact that law giving the City Wilmington that charter authority, provide preferential choice transportation to Wilmington children to suburban schools especially Red Clay and give the first choice over in-district and out of district choice application coming from suburban students. Give Charter School of Wilmington it’s marching order to vacate Red Clay’s Wilmington Campus to give-way to a traditional high school for city kids.

Waiting Jack Markell to take action is like waiting for Superman who ain’t never coming!

So now where is the candidates for 2016??? Beau Biden seems to be setting his own agenda and refuses to engage these issue. Greg Lavelle, well he showed his true colors supporting Markell’s Common Core and Smarter Balanced Assessment agenda! I am very disappoint in Greg who I thought was tracking for a real chance! Greg, it ain’t going to happen. Then there is Matt Denn who hit the AG ground running with some great proposals addressing Wilmington education needs in the short-term. If there were an election today Denn would win. Biden has lost his prince stardom luster. Beau isn’t very decisive. Greg really blew it with that H.B. 334 flip-flop vote.

Christina’s attendance zones are particularly strange because it has a non-contiguous “island” in the city’s east side that is not connected to its suburban schools in Newark. Colonial does not operate schools in the city limits, the report points out, but buses them out into the suburbs.

Yo !! Jimmy Olsen, brush up on your Delaware desegregation history! Dividing Wilmington and not addressing the concerns after the passage of The Neighborhood School Act was more about keep the foot on the backs of minorities heads so the pro charter school reformers could have their way. Traditional schools “needed” to fail to justify charter schools just as Conrad “had” to fill-full a promise made to return Conrad High School that was a victim of desegregation order re: closure of certain schools. Bobby knows the promise he made to the Conrad Alumni.  

Face it, Markell isn’t going to make any radical moves and the task-force report will be drooped in the lap of the next governor, most-likely Matt Denn.

57 responses to “Lame-Duck Jack Markell won’t take action on “Wilmington’s” education recommendations! Just more kicking the can down the road!

  1. Young isn’t the city board member 🙂

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    • kilroysdelaware

      But he is going to make a fine state legislators!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, I don’t know about that…he’d get himself kicked off the education committee just like Kowalko for being too much of an activist… 😉

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    • Yes, I am the city board member. So are all 6 of my board mates. I was elected by the a vote of the district, including the City of Wilmington section that contains Christina’s schools. Nominating districts are a construct of the law, we are elected at large so that we will not play provincial politics.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. You know what, you’re absolutely right. Thank you for clarifying! Just because you don’t have any skin in the game as far as the city of Wilmington goes doesn’t mean you don’t stand united against injustice wherever you see it. Bravo, sir!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Publius e decere

    I can dig it. Divvy the city between Brandywine and Red Clay. Keep Colonial where they are, or not, I’m indifferent. Kick out Christina, for sure. Red Clay can serve the city better than Christina. It’s a cake walk when freed from the sour albatross of Kowalko.

    And frankly, innovative charter schools can serve the city best. Be sure they continue to have a role. And yes, let the city be “a” charter authorizer, but not the only one. And let UDel be an authorizer also, statewide Oh, and force CSD to sell that decade-long white elephant EMPTY Astro-Power building before asking the taxpayers for a massive tax increase.

    So start with the easy low hanging fruit. Kick out Christina and give their island to Red Clay Then debate the rest.

    Publius

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  4. “And frankly, innovative charter schools can serve the city best.” Thank you for that hat trick on my throwing up at a computer screen tonight Publius. First it was that seizure inducing Mark Murphy interview with WHYY, then it was that piece of crap Delaware “State Accountability System” drivel coming from the DOE with their asinine survey results, and now that one single comment coming from the charter guy cheerleader. The charters are half the problem with their enrollment “we’re not breaking the law, it’s only a myth” preference.

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    • Publius e decere

      Well, since a hat trick is a series of three positive events I’ll accept your recognition as being a three-time positive influence on public education. I appreciate your compliment and I’ll work diligently to honor it. I hope you will work with me on behalf of all families.

      As for admissions preferences, you are free to choose (pursue) the public schools which you think are best for you — a freedom which should be shared by all. Please focus on what you want, rather than on what others “should not have”.

      If you pursue a spot in a public school and don’t get it, then ask the legislators (yours being, I guess, Kowalko) to raise the enrollment and funding limits. Let the public market decide, not the political market.

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    • Kevin,
      I said before and I firmly still believe your experiences have blinded you to other charter situations that are most assuredly better than the other options available to parents. Your experiences are yours and your children are yours to advocate for but when it comes to calling people charter cheerleaders or laying blanket statements on their operation, you are not accurate.

      Our NCC schools have struggled and continue to struggle with district border problems, social dysfunction problems, economic management problems, and social engineering experiments of financial / and population redistribution. In response to those issues, parents have sought alternatives. The NJ story highlights what Wilmington “wants” to do. At the core of it, parents want good education and they don’t want Curly, Coach or even JY from the suburbs deciding what happens to their kids because they have not demonstrated a capacity to administrate the school systems.

      The “establishment school system” doesn’t like charters because they aren’t under the purview of district financial “wizardry”(i.e. -redistribution), the social justice and progressives don’t like them because the children (and the financial resources they bring) are being redirected to where the PARENTS want them to go.

      I do not think Charters are for everyone. Charters do not claim to be an answer for everyone. My argument is simply, I, nor any other parent that feels similarly should have to go to a private (tuition) school to get their kids an education where academics and behavior are the priority. That situation should be available in all our schools. Sadly, it is not. When IT IS, the charter issue is dead because there will be no need. Let me know when that happens.

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    • Publius, the very fact that you would refer to education in terms of markets says it all. No further comment needed.

      M. Ryder, this is not the first time you have leveled the allegation that because my son had a bad experience at a charter that I hate all charters. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Because of my son’s experience, I went outside the usual parent box and began looking into the whole system. The very fact that 1) There is an enrollment preferences task force, 2) There is an outstanding OCR complaint that hasn’t been decided on where the OCR asked ALL the charter schools for their applications through a FOIA request and the charters did not hand the information over because most of them didn’t keep the records, and 3) The current ACLU-DE Community Legal Aid complaint shows there are extreme issues with cherry-picking of many charters in the DE school system, most notably in Wilmington. This isn’t a political issue for me, it isn’t a personal issue either. It’s the reality, and the landscape is very corrupt.

      I’m not denying public school districts have more behavior issues. These issues have been around long before charters existed, especially in urban schools. The whole funding issue needs to be reformulated for the benefit of all. I believe all schools should have skilled social workers on staff, psychiatrists on staff (to more accurately diagnose and help students with neurological disabilities), and more accountability for teachers and administration in terms of how they are dealing with these behavior issues.

      I’m not sure if you’ve heard some of these charter characters at the enrollment preference task force meetings, but they are actually defending a system to keep certain children out of their schools. What kind of message does that send? It is a very elitist attitude that has helped (not caused) the current problems in Delaware schools.

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    • lastDEconservative

      ” … they are actually defending a system to keep certain children out of their schools. What kind of message does that send? It is a very elitist attitude … ”

      I know. Ridiculous, isn’t it, Angos? It’s the same kind of attitude that drives those damned Navy Seals and Army Rangers to unnecessarily stellar levels of performance. My nights are not restless because my family is less protected than they could/should be though; hmm. And those fighter jet jocks? C’mon, my son wanted in in the worst way; nary a chance from the USAF or the USN because his eyesight wasn’t -perfect- ? What about his self esteem? What about mine? What’s the damage of a few under-performers mixed in with the able and willing? Okay, of a LOT mixed in? Huh?

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    • You are comparing apples and oranges here LastDel. These are schools, not the military. Please…

      Liked by 1 person

    • Specific interest / performance requirements are commonplace throughout many districts along with college applications. Disliking the fact that not all students capabilities are the same doesn’t change the fact. These students are part of “ALL” students but they are not offered the opportunities of education they should because of all the other progressive demands placed on schools not to mention the behavioral exceptions allowed by Jea S. and his band social justice advocates who bemoan the lack of cultural “understanding”.

      Charters must demonstrate a need and apply to meet the need. NCS happens to have a 3000 person waiting list. Do you think that speaks to a “need” in our area?

      CSW pushes kids to study and learn at rates that maybe not everyone needs or wants to. Should every student be pushed this way? No. So why should every student who applies just be admitted.

      Sorry but u have been emboldened by kilroy to project a knowledge about schools that u do not possess. I’m not trying to be rude but this isn’t knowledge found or learned on the mezzanine.

      I aplaud you going outside the box but if want the accolades then you better have the facts and right now you’re still in discovery mode. Go to Glasgow or Christiana HS and then tell me about the utopia and the wonderfulness of transparent christina.

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    • You obviously have been looking up info on me based on your comment. I wonder why that is. There is only one place you could have received that information, unless you know me on a personal level… I have never talked about “the glory of Christina.” I have never said they have great schools. But I would rather send my kid to a public school district with a slew of problems than to teach him that discrimination and cherry-picking students is okay. It’s an elitist point of view that actually makes the problems in public school districts even worse. I would rather have problems in special education with a signed IEP in a public school district than charters not providing anything at all. I would rather have my son surrounded by the diversity in society than a specialized niche any day of the year. We are all the same blood, we all bleed red. To pretend otherwise is elitist. I always read your comments with a grain of salt though M Ryder, because it wasn’t that long ago you wrote:

      “So when Jon draws a day of carnage at school on paper and DOES decide to act it out, who’s going to point the finger at the school for not providing sufficient safety and who’s going to point the finger at grown adults who should be responsible and isolate Jon from others he may harm.”

      You have written many times that you don’t want YOUR kids associated with THOSE kids. It’s not to hard to read between the lines.

      Since you wrote that, I’ve always been disturbed by you and your comments. Because at that point, you crossed a line and cast judgment on my son based on something YOU had no clue about. It was deeply offensive. And you can see this any way you want, but you cast judgments and aspersions as if we are all idiots to your elitist ways of thinking. It is this kind of mentality that has allowed the charter system in Delaware to get away with what it has done on so many levels. So stop treating me like the new kid around here. I know MUCH more than you seem to think I do, regardless of what you THINK you know about me. I will defend any school or school district if I see their rights are being violated by the system. If they are the violators, I will slam them to the wall.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Kevin, that is hideous. I apologize for the lack of tolerance and compassion you have received from some of humanity. Your son is a blessing and should never be made to feel anything less.

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    • “Sorry but u have been emboldened by kilroy to project a knowledge about schools that u do not possess. I’m not trying to be rude but this isn’t knowledge found or learned on the mezzanine.”

      Furthermore, I am my own man. While Kilroy was kind enough to allow me to tell my son’s story last Spring, we both have very different articles we post. What I have become emboldened about are some of the same things that gets Kilroy frustrated about, but that doesn’t mean I allow anyone to dictate what I think, write or say. I will be the first to admit a mistake or apologize if I treat someone unfairly. Do not tell me what knowledge I possess or don’t, because you have no clue what you are even talking about. If you have to say something like “I’m not trying to be rude”, you probably are.

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    • Publius e decere

      Chill down, Kevin. You dish it as much as any opponent, so spare us your indignation. Take the occasional bloody nose in stride, as the price of admission.

      Education is a market. It is a state of nature. Good services draw demand, poor services don’t. Offer value or stand down. Your denial of this verity is to be Luddite

      The ACLU complaint is just that. “Their” complaint. So whatever the OCR resolves to act on, we will ALL abide by it. Right? Including a no-reponse? Including the possibility that OCR will give an OK to current practices? If you can’t agree to abide by OCR then what is your point? Your way or the highway?

      I agree that a personally-indentifiable-and-personal-attack is wrong. Which is why you reacted to another blog commentor. Which is why I find “Shylock” “Shill” Kowalko reprehensible. Which is why I so easily dismiss some fatuous commentors on this blog who have attempted the same real-world attacks on other blog commentors (to no avail, and to their everlasting ignominy).

      You are passionate for your cause, we get it. BUT you don’t easily admit that there are other reasonable points of view, which is why you get blog-punched and blog-pummeled over and over. Try standing down for a week or so, and think through life from other viewpoints.

      Like Kilroy, you are fundamentally sincere but at time are superficially offensive. Selling you message involves ‘selling’, not dictating. I might suggest that you lay off of the ad hominem and the dog-in-the-manger. Focus on how to give people more of what they want, rather than focus on taking thing away.

      Publius

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    • lastDEconservative

      “You have written many times that you don’t want YOUR kids associated with THOSE kids. It’s not to hard to read between the lines.”

      Actually, Angos, you have just given the most direct, most succinct summary of YOUR unfortunate world view without it having to be gleaned from an unfortunately long and scary rant. After all, who said this, you or M? “I would rather have my son surrounded by the diversity in society than a specialized niche any day of the year.” M, I, and others choose to choose the best we see fit for our progeny and have no objection to your obvious intent to do the same.

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    • But here’s the deal M, L, and P: Your way causes more problems for society as a whole. If your okay with that, that’s your choice. But the very act of choice in Delaware education has becomes to tainted to it’s very core, that most parents can’t see the reality it has created. What they are running from has caused the situations to multiply on many levels. I know there is no way I could ever make you understand. I fully recognize the reasons why charters were created, and the original law I don’t have a problem with. It’s the corruption that has followed since the original that I have grave problems with. You can see this as ranting and raving, and Kilroy and I creating problems where there are none, but I can say for myself that the actions of many in this state have made worse any existing problems.

      I abhor any comment made comparing children or teachers to “markets” or “human capital”. It perverts education into something it should never have become. Sorry, that’s just the way I feel, and no, I won’t take a week long time-out Publius. If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. There is no price for admission in Kilroy’s world, cause it’s free. I’ll take a bloody nose and get back up swinging. I think you will soon learn the ACLU complaint is not “their” complaint. Whatever the ruling on it, I take pride that enough people stood up and said no more. The times, they are a changin’ gentleman, and while you think the wind is blowing in your direction, get ready, cause it is not.

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    • lastDEconservative

      So, what’s it like up there in the rarified air …

      – most parents can’t see the reality it has created.
      -there is no way I could ever make you understand.
      -that has followed since the original that I have grave problems with.

      … from which we, the great simpletonariat, we, the weak of mind, are viewed with alternating visions of disdain and sorrowful regard?

      ” … the ACLU complaint is not “their” complaint.” Oh, but it is. Otherwise it would be mine (literally and/or figuratively). Setting up shop in the Camp of the Perpetually Aggrieved is a choice in itself, and you’re welcome to it, just call it what it is. Please, for the sake of your franchise if nothing else.

      Speaking of which, you diminish said franchise, every time you huff and puff this nonsense: “The times, they are a changin’ gentleman [sic], and while you think the wind is blowing in your direction, get ready, cause [sic] it is not.”

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    • I’m basing my “times they are a changin” comments on a steady increase of parents getting fed up with the test and punish atmosphere in schools, a huge rise in legislation introduced that basically has many legislators saying “fooled me once, you won’t do it again” which a lot of is bi-partisan, and the DOE taking a step back on some of their bullying language.

      My air is fresh and clear. How is yours?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Publius e decere

      King Kevin,

      Your throne is built on historic “sand” and it is a vision of a future Potemkin Village.

      “ … the very act of choice in Delaware education has becomes to tainted to it’s very core, that most parents can’t see the reality it has created …”

      Despite the malaprops, are you kidding? You assert you have more insight than “most” parents. Your pride and hubris are unbecoming. Not to mention misplaced. Most parents are making choices which you, in your increasingly-minority views, disagree with. Who is the odd man out?

      “ I know there is no way I could ever make you understand.”

      Well, now I can admit there IS hope for you. You are right on this, if “understand” means swallowing your hyperbole like a barbed hook. Or a gaff.

      “ … You can see this as ranting and raving, and Kilroy and I creating problems where there are none …”

      Yes. I (and we) do see you that way. You make it easy. Thanks!

      “ … If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.”

      Wolfgang! Wolfgang! Must I leave? My french-toast is almost done.

      “I think you will soon learn the ACLU complaint is not “their” complaint.”

      To quote King Kowalko, we all know that the ACLU is a “shill” for other more local parochial interests. And this Publius-king is not (ahem) “shy” about saying so. You wear your complicity like a cheap boutonniere. Kowalko wears it like polyester purgatory.

      “The times, they are a changin’ gentleman, and while you think the wind is blowing in your direction, get ready, cause it is not.”

      I agree that you know what blows. Just remember than there is more than one wind. And ranting three-sheets-to-the-wind (as you do here) is not a compelling public uprising. It’s just one heretic.

      ——————————————

      At least Kilroy is an honest drunk. I can see the day when Kilroy and I hoist distilled tumblers to the demise of the Boy With The Bad-Attitude Bottle. “Mark” my words. 🙂

      Publius

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    • It’s a little odd to me that Kevin doesn’t like school choice. He hated his first choice. What if the issues in first school(choice school) weren’t a choice school but a feeder school? The issues could have happened in ANY school, they didn’t happen just because it was a charter school. And he and everyone else knows that.

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    • I’m sure you remember this Publius: https://seventhtype.wordpress.com/2013/10/25/does-your-mama-pick-watermelons/

      Now tell me, without lying, that you support this shit? It isn’t choice if there is shady crap going on in the background. You know it and I know it. Choice is the shiny bow on a box of discrimination and cherry-picking. Especially in your neck of the woods.

      And how did it go with the FOIA all the charters got last year to produce their applications from the last two years? As I heard it, most of them were not “able” to produce the documents. With all the accusations against charter schools in Delaware over the years, why would they not provide the very documents that could prove their innocence? Cause it would not have proven that, and it would have exposed the house of cards the charter system in Delaware has become. I do not hate choice. I don’t hate charters. I hate charters who use choice to their own advantage.

      Do I think I know more than most parents in Delaware about this system? Of course I do. I’ve researched it extensively, along with all the DOE and Markell agendas that have allowed it to happen. I know who backs it, I know who puts on a pretty face in public but in back-room deals will fuck over any student who doesn’t fit the mold, and I know all about the cash cow low-income charter schools have become. I know about the testing scandals, and the manipulation of data to further those interest. I know about the companies that are backing this, and the non-profits that are profiting greatly with taxpayer dollars. This isn’t about me being king, or an almighty education czar. It’s about exposing the frauds and liars out there. I don’t have a vested interest at all. I serve on no board or government agency or education agency, and I don’t get paid one cent for what I do with blogging. Can you say the same in this education landscape Publius?

      Pencadermom, you seem to have forgotten my whole beef with the charter system to begin with: Denial of IEPs. I’m not going to sit here and say my son’s journey in ANY Delaware public school has been easy. But at least in his current school district, he was granted an IEP with no questions asked. Nobody has denied him that fundamental and federal right in a public school district. My son’s school board records their board meetings for all to hear. Do any of the schools you praise do the same? No, because they would be scared shitless if people really learned what was said in their meetings. It’s a coward’s way out, backed by lots of money. Knowing what I know now, I would rather roll the dice with a public school district than a charter any day of the year.

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    • Publius e decere

      Kevin,

      You are a wearisome lad. Let’s take your litany by the dram:

      “I’m sure you remember this Publius”

      No, actually I don’t follow your blog. Not worth the time.

      “Choice is the shiny bow on a box of discrimination and cherry-picking.”

      Have you cleared this statement with your task masters? They also want choice. They just don’t want people to choose what they would not choose. Which is no choice at all.

      “… how did it go with the FOIA all the charters got last year to produce their applications from the last two years? As I heard it, most of them were not “able” to produce the documents.”

      You accuse charters of collecting information illegally and then using this alleged collection against applicants, then you complain when those charters say that they did not collect information illegally nor use information illegally. I sense the inner-bully in you. You are much like Joseph McCarthy, except you can’t hold your liquor.

      “I do not hate choice. I don’t hate charters.”

      OK. And the Cubs will win the Series. “Yeah, that’s the ticket .. me and Morgan Fairchild”. Spare us.

      “Do I think I know more than most parents in Delaware about this system? Of course I do.”

      Confirmed. You actually are a horse’s ass.

      “I don’t have a vested interest at all. I serve on no board or government agency or education agency, and I don’t get paid one cent for what I do with blogging. Can you say the same in this education landscape Publius?”

      Whew! OK, I’ll play. I do not get paid for anything I post here or on any other blog nor do I get paid for anything I do to support public schools. I am a true volunteer in all pursuits. I may one day earn a consultation fee, if public schools hire me for my expertise, but as of today my representations are absolutely volunteer. You seem to find joy and pride in “knowing” all of the backstories of the ACLU and of Kowalko and more — so are YOU receiving compensation or benefit of any sort? Your vigor and polarity leads me to believe you do.

      “Knowing what I know now, I would rather roll the dice with a public school district than a charter.”

      This is your right. Just as it is the right of a family to choose a school with a specific interest preference, or a limited geographic preference, or a sibling preference, or a school nearest to home or one far from home. What makes you a horse’s ass is that you think your opinions should be accepted by all. Some people actually prefer something from the public school system OTHER than what you
      prefer.

      Get it? Please try.

      Publius

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    • The only right parents have when it comes to education is the right to a free one. Choice is a relatively recent legal construct. This makes the availability of choice a privilege, not a right. It used to be that choice involved moving to a location where you felt the schools were best. Now the schools are brought to any place someone personally thinks they should be, sometimes to the detriment of existing schools. And no, data does not show that charter schools perform better than their comparable traditional public schools. What IS different is the environment. And that’s fine, but let’s not act like that isn’t the draw.

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    • “No, actually I don’t follow your blog. Not worth the time.”

      Who is the horses ass now? Not my blog. If you bothered to click on the link, I’m quite sure you would have been very familiar with the context of that article.

      “Have you cleared this statement with your task masters? They also want choice. They just don’t want people to choose what they would not choose. Which is no choice at all.”

      I don’t have any task master in this world, save the higher authority that gave all human beings free will. However free will comes with a price, as one day we will all be held accountable for what we do with that free will.

      “You accuse charters of collecting information illegally and then using this alleged collection against applicants, then you complain when those charters say that they did not collect information illegally nor use information illegally. I sense the inner-bully in you. You are much like Joseph McCarthy, except you can’t hold your liquor.”

      Seriously, given where you sit you actually think these comments hold any weight whatsoever? I love how you dance around my comments and try to turn it back on me Publius. Let me clear my throat! Did the DE Charter School Network, who coordinated this OCR request to all the charters in Delaware, not go back to the OCR and state the charters didn’t provide the applications because most of them don’t have it?

      I also love how you always think I’m drunk. I rarely drink, if at all, and I have the restraint to say when enough is enough or the fuckitability to become “three sheets to the wind”. I’ve never drunk blogged, whether writing an article or commented.

      Me-“I do not hate choice. I don’t hate charters.” Publius-“OK. And the Cubs will win the Series. “Yeah, that’s the ticket .. me and Morgan Fairchild”. Spare us.”

      Answer this then genius, why was I trying to help the parents of Gateway when they were on the verge of being shut down? Why do you think I write about the problems in charter schools? I know they aren’t going to disappear. It’s a part of the landscape. I accept that. I expose problems so hopefully someone will make a change. I made FFA a very big deal, as did others, and they had massive change. While we don’t know the long-term results of that change, they are in a better position than they were previously.

      “Confirmed. You actually are a horse’s ass.”

      Thanks, you say the sweetest words.

      “Whew! OK, I’ll play. I do not get paid for anything I post here or on any other blog nor do I get paid for anything I do to support public schools. I am a true volunteer in all pursuits. I may one day earn a consultation fee, if public schools hire me for my expertise, but as of today my representations are absolutely volunteer. You seem to find joy and pride in “knowing” all of the backstories of the ACLU and of Kowalko and more — so are YOU receiving compensation or benefit of any sort? Your vigor and polarity leads me to believe you do.”

      Now who is the paranoid one? When have I even mentioned Kowalko in this thread? And yet you have mentioned him a few times. Do I agree with John on a lot of points, sure. Do I answer to him, no. It just rubs you the wrong way that anyone can have the same opinion that isn’t the same as yours without it being a part of some huge plot. I find no joy or pride in hearing stories about things the ACLU has discovered. These are REAL EVENTS that happen Publius, throughout our state. I’m guessing you don’t have a special needs child. I hear from these parents all the time. They don’t understand why a school wouldn’t give their child the help they need. You don’t see their cries of help going unanswered. This is the heart of me. This is why I write. I could just sit back and deal with my own child and leave it at that. I choose not to. I choose to help, in my own unbiased way, all the children and parents who have suffered immensely, in ways you would never understand unless you were in that position. You can empathize or feel bad, but until you walk a mile in their shoes, you won’t.

      I’m not going to sit here and pretend to understand the plight of being low-income or a minority. I don’t live in those worlds. But there is enough going on in this state that has served to discriminate against all three: special needs, low-income and minority. And in some places, the plight is against all three all at once.

      Much to my wife’s chagrin, I do not receive any financial compensation or benefit. I do not swear allegiance to any one political party or special interest group. My vigor and polarity are based on my experiences and information I have discovered. My eyes opened. Imagine, if you will, living in Nazi Poland. You hear about things going on like these “camps”, but you don’t want to believe it. Then you actually see one. It changes your perspective. It doesn’t get washed away. While this is an extreme example, it illustrates the plight of parents like me.

      “Just as it is the right of a family to choose a school with a specific interest preference, or a limited geographic preference, or a sibling preference, or a school nearest to home or one far from home. What makes you a horse’s ass is that you think your opinions should be accepted by all. Some people actually prefer something from the public school system OTHER than what you prefer. Get it? Please try. Publius”

      Thank you for saying please! 🙂 I don’t want to take rights away from anyone. I just want parents to understand what their rights do to society as a whole. While they sit there and say “that high school is horrible. There are so many bad kids there”, they forget that 1) maybe some of those kids don’t have the opportunities others have, 2) their lives are in large part dictated by the actions of others, 3) taking away their choices by granting others choices makes the problems worse and then it becomes OUR problem. If this Wilmington Education Committee thing goes through, with it’s suggestions, we all pay higher taxes. Which I don’t have a problem with, but many will. I will fight for those who don’t have the same choices as others. That is my choice. Get it? Please try. Kevin

      Like

    • lastDEconservative

      “I made FFA a very big deal … and they had massive change.”
      “You don’t see their cries of help going unanswered.”

      Methinks thou dost think a bit too highly of thyself.

      Like

    • lastDEconservative

      “There are so many bad kids there”, they forget that 1) maybe some of those kids don’t have the opportunities others have, 2) their lives are in large part dictated by the actions of others, 3) taking away their choices by granting others choices makes the problems worse and then it becomes OUR problem.”

      My, oh, my. Land, and pull in your cape a minute. 1) No matter where one is in the pecking order of this old life, at any given moment, opportunity X may or may not be immediately at hand to one; which doesn’t mean that it’s not, period. 2) As are all our lives increasingly dictated by the elites, the smarter, the insistent, into whose ranks you so urgently aspire, to the unending downward spiral of society. 3) Choices are “granted” or “taken away” by who? See no. 2). That’s coming from a place not in the natural order of things.

      Like

    • Maybe that’s the problem LDC. “That’s the natural order of things.” It’s only natural if we make it so. Maybe we can tear down that wall, one brick at a time. The world will never be a better place if people sit back and let that status quo continue. Now excuse me, I have to gave save a bunch of people from a burning house.

      Like

    • Hey watch how you talk about attending Christina board meetings 😉

      Like

  5. Greg MAZZOTTA

    Reminder :: the IEP/Autism/Blind Task Forces supported by legislation – pending and developing – calling for Process Improvement.

    Although I have not served as task force member, I did introduce myself as the advisor for the DE state quality award program and
    the “on-ramp” or such resources, tools, and sustainability.

    From the national perspective, there is growing concern that process
    improvement and sustainability methodologies are being deployed
    by Health Care over Education at a rate of 10 to 1.

    Perhaps, others can see that this data point is of growing concern
    in Delaware where Hospitals will need to bear the costs of a ill prepared workforce.

    May I suggest that…effective legislators will need to take a
    “systems thinking” in order to resolve this growing critical issue.

    I share the VISION of PA’s Governor Tom Wolf: Jobs that PAY, schools that TEACH. Government that WORKS

    Like

    • lastDEconservative

      Live! From Kilroy’s basement!

      Like

    • “the VISION of PA’s Governor Tom Wolf: Jobs that PAY, schools that TEACH. Government that WORKS”
      ….That quote is priceless for its utter naivete about what our current government (state or federal) can do or actually does.

      Greg, if you believe there is a “VISION” that Mr. Wolf really believes will actually happen or if you believe our legislators have the where with all to understand and “entertain” all the minutia of “systems thinking”, then you are contributing the problems that are bogging all our governmental systems down. This highly intellectual modus operandi is only effective by highly trained, highly disciplined, highly motivated operators. None of which applies to government which is highly reactionary, whimsical in its discipline, and extremely unmotivated due to the lack of accountability.

      Like

    • MR is just one other moron who thinks that most things Government does is bad, and everything done by private enterprise is golden.

      “This highly intellectual modus operandi is only effective by highly trained, highly disciplined, highly motivated operators”
      The idiots in those financial corporations that caused the recent “Great Recession” were highly trained, highly disciplined, highly motivated operators, and look where the f$#! that got us.

      What exactly has privatizing education really gotten us in the past 10-15 years. We still import a large amount of highly educated “STEM” workforce into this country. Our international ranking on standardized tests have not improved. The only tangible difference has been rising inequality in educational access and performance, in line with other socioeconomic principles. All in a time period where we have shifted more services and jobs from the public into private sectors.
      As to Pennsylvania, Look at that suck-A$! job done by Tom Corbett, who in his privatization and anti-government zeal has sunk that state into a $2Billion hole.

      Like

    • lastDEconservative

      Filling in the phrase Ed left out in his/her hurried ad hominem splashed on a reasoned commentary by beloved M:

      “The idiots in those financial corporations that caused the recent “Great Recession” were highly trained, highly disciplined, highly motivated operators — FOLLOWING THE RULES AND REGULATIONS PUT IN PLACE BY THE OMNIPRESENT, OMNISCIENT GOVERNMENT – ELECTED AND BUREAUCRATIC ALIKE — , and look where the f$#! that got us.”

      Always happy to help.

      Like

    • Hey Ed,
      Look up Carter, Clinton, Barney Frank and all the other players that mandated the banks provide loans to individuals who were unqualified. By the way, the banks covered their arses by creating the packaged default swaps KNOWING they were being forced to distribute bad loans. The financial system did what it had to do to protect itself from the asinine government officials who knew nothing about banking but everything about letting them eat cake.

      Look up how many times “W” and McCain warned the legislators about Sallie Mae and Freddie Mac. Mr. Fwank poo poo’d them every time until it was too late.

      And shove your enlightened “moron” comments somewhere else. Are you trying to bully me? I think there are laws about that. Representative K just got finished expressing his opposition to being bullied. Maybe he can recommend a path for me to have you charged with inappropriate language. Please stay on topic next time.

      No, private sector isn’t golden, but government is a whole other “golden moment” altogether.

      Like

    • Come on LDC and MR, you can do better than that. Now I understand why you clowns still believe that private enterprise is golden.
      Have you ever heard of Glass-Steagall Act and the Gramm Act that repealed it; all in the name of the free market and capitalist agenda?

      Not touching Corbett are you? Or that other dimwit in Kansas, (Brownback) who kept his job and continues to push costs on the future generations of Kansas while trying to compensate for the hole he dug for his state. How are those tax cuts policies working now?

      MR, calling you a moron has nothing to do with bullying; just an accurate summary of the crap you keep recycling on this blog. And you had the gall to mention Dubya thinking about something. Are you serious?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. lastDEconservative

    I guess it’s just me, but I will go out on a limb here and say that if the BEST comes of Delaware/Wilmington/Furrowed Brow Handwringers EdGroup No. 932’s recommendations, NOTHING will happen, that is, the status quo will (once again) prevail.

    If a scintilla of what has been proposed is enacted, conditions for our most valuable and most vulnerable will (once again) diminish by a corresponding degree. If a tablespoon of the proposals happen to come to be, unlikely as is the possibility, the system might just collapse of its own weight. (Which would be good, but for the fact that the same multitude of destroyers would still be in charge and would simply pick up where they left off).

    For the denizens unable and/or unwilling to critically perceive, I base this prediction in part on the absence of a proposal for “A” leader — to the contrary, I note (once again) the creation of (once again) more government, or expansion (once again) of existing [failed] government, further diluting what leadership ability struggling to manifest might be lurking in the intentionally increased fog of the leviathan, one purpose of which is to ensure the utter absence of responsibility and any attendant accountability. One need look no further than this rag blog, to quote some recent visitor, to see all the fuss (once again) about where the commas should be placed and the font that should be used on the certain color paper to see that “the system” will NEVER be disbanded, oh, no, it will get more and more bandaids and bumper stickers … and crush more and more futures.

    Of course, none of this matters, as D/W/FBH EdGroup No. 933 will commence its study in 3, 2, 1 …

    Like

  7. Did anyone ever check to see if Red Clay would want something like this? Before we go relieveing Colonial and Christina of their city students, maybe we should check to see if the destination could support this “gift” the city wants to give them. The reward for Red Clay doing a good job with the most difficult kids is an infusion doubling the number of difficult kids? As a Red Clay taxpayer and a parent of a student entering a Red Clay high school, why on earth would I ever want this? My gut reaction is that if this happens, the Christina schools will become much more appealing to suburban parents.

    Like

    • That is a really interesting point, but I don’t think it matters whether either district wants this to happen, unfortunately. I’m also in the Red Clay district, with 2 kids currently attending elementary school and 2 entering school in the next few years. I will be paying close attention to this as it moves forward!

      Like

    • Your kids will be long out of HS by the time there is one change

      Like

    • How exactly is Red Clay doing a good job with the most difficult kids? It has pursued the same policy of re-segregation by income and race as the charter schools. First it chartered CSW and started magnets schools. Secondly, it was one of the main advocates of school choice. From first hand experience, this initially lead to the cratering of Dickinson, then McKean and soon to be, AI duPont which all perform like the Christina high schools you seem to have problems with.

      One thing though, AI high holds on, probably due to the strong faculty that works there but did you know that since the opening of Conrad, its attendance is down more than 25%, and its socioeconomic demographics have changed rapidly in that time.

      Like

    • Publius e decere

      Ed Watcher: Stop watching and get in the game. Red Clay has four high schools doing very well (Conrad, Cab, Charter and DMA) and three others rising (AI, Dickinson, and McKean), They clearly have game. Unlike the nanny-state districts wich surround them.

      If people are leaving AI to attend Conrad INTRAdistrict — as you assert — then shouldn’t AI be benchmarking and emulating Conrad to regain it’s attractiveness to choice-students? Shouldn’t AI be asking its district board to allow ALL schools to have all-choice status so that the market can decide what is the best use of school-tax dollars?

      Conrad is doing nothing wrong, and is arguably doing everything right. They are attracting students, and doing so based on objective standards and attractive programs. We should expect such excellence everywhere.

      Publius

      Like

    • lastDEconservative

      Wow, just wow. Where is Eve, where is pandora? Someone has to stomp on these embers of elitism before a broader audience might see them glowing.

      “As a Red Clay taxpayer and a parent of a student entering a Red Clay high school, why on earth would I ever want this?’

      “unfortunately. I’m also in the Red Clay district, with 2 kids currently attending elementary school and 2 entering school in the next few years. I will be paying close attention to this as it moves forward!”

      Like

    • @lastDEconservative, I’m not sure where you’re finding fault with my statement, unless you were being sarcastic, in which case I suppose I shouldn’t feel so confused. My response was intended just to point out that the issue won’t be solved by the district, and that I also have a stake in this as a parent (and taxpayer) in Red Clay. My kids go to neighborhood schools and I will not choice them anywhere. If the feeder pattern gets changed and they go to different schools, so be it. Your comment about elitism is pretty far-fetched in my scenario. I will be paying close attention because that’s my job, as a parent and taxpayer, and your inclusion of the word “unfortunately”, which actually goes with the prior sentence, makes it look like I am unhappy that my kids are in Red Clay schools, which could not be further from the truth. I’m happy to engage in further dialogue with you if you’d like to contact me directly.

      Again, if I’m taking offense to a comment that was written with sarcasm instead of sincerity, please disregard.

      Like

    • Pubic,
      Since you are a peddler of comments backed by zero data nor sound analysis, it didn’t surprise me when I read the trite from your posting above.
      Since when is NOT meeting AYP considered to be rising? Tell that the Dickinson and McKean.
      From your postings you seem to be a firm believer in test scores reflecting the performance of schools. Have you ever examined the test scores. McKean and Dickinson have been at or near the bottom of the pile for the last 10 years and its not changing. In fact, the most recent 2014 test scores show Glasgow and Christiana performing better than McKean in both reading and math. But McKean must be rising, because you said so. Even with the opening of Newark Charter, Newark HS since compares favorably with AI.
      BTW, up until Conrad high opened, AI was one of the top schools in the state in terms of test scores, AP results, climate, school competition, etc. Hell, we even went to the National Science Olympiad. Which other real public school (not those selective posers) in this state could claim that. I knew that because I was at the time involved with the school. Now, at least with academic test results, its somewhere in the middle and really headed down. Care to speculate why?

      Liked by 1 person

    • lastDEconservative

      ” Care to speculate why?”

      Easy. The one disciplinarian, of the kids and the so-called adults, bugged out. Parets, of course. Easy.

      Like

    • LDC,
      Parets retired in 2012, AFTER AI started its decline. Correlation, not causation.
      PS: I’ve noticed that Publius has not replied as yet.

      Like

    • Publius e decere

      EdWatcher,

      To take your tactless-and-factless ad hominem blog-comment bit by byte, here is a rebuttal to your scuttlebutt —

      “ … you are a peddler of comments backed by zero data nor sound analysis …”

      My analysis is completely sound. Your attack-ish rant is not.

      “ … you seem to be a firm believer in test scores reflecting the performance of schools …”

      Well, yes. The absolute scores matter. For low-scoring schools, the growth rate of their scores matters. School is about learning. We test for learning. These are timeless systemic truths.

      “McKean and Dickinson have been at or near the bottom of the pile for the last 10 years and its [sic] not changing.”

      Wow. You have made my point better than I ever could have. Thank you.

      “ … until Conrad high [sic] opened, AI was one of the top schools in the state … “

      I guess Conrad ate AI’s lunch. Don’t they have a proctor in the lunchroom?

      “ … Which other real public school (not those selective posers) …”

      Hmm. By law, charter schools ARE public schools. Maybe you need some more schooling.

      “ … I knew that because I was at the time involved with the [AI] school. Now, at least with academic test results, its somewhere in the middle and really headed down.”

      Well, that proves it. You were holding it all together. Shame on you for “retiring”. How selfish. Or selfless — depending on one’s view.

      “ … Now, at least with academic test results, its somewhere in the middle and really headed down. Care to speculate why?”

      No. You have given us all the proof we need.

      Publius

      Like

    • “From your postings you seem to be a firm believer in test scores reflecting the performance of schools. Have you ever examined the test scores. McKean and Dickinson have been at or near the bottom of the pile for the last 10 years and its not changing. In fact, the most recent 2014 test scores show Glasgow and Christiana performing better than McKean in both reading and math. But McKean must be rising, because you said so”
      So test scores do matter? Or no? I’m confused. And, are you examining test scores? If so, why, if they don’t matter?

      Like

    • Publius e decere

      PMom,

      Test scores DO matter. The CONTEXT matters also.

      If the scores are already at or above proficiency, then the scores stand alone and the school is OK.

      If the scores are below proficiency, then look at whether the school has been improving its % proficiency over the past few years.

      Improving scores? OK.
      Not improving? NOT OK

      Looked at this way, most of the recently-closed charters and most of the “priority schools” would have passed muster. In short, be good or be on the path to being good.

      If a public school is not turning out proficient students — and when underperforming it is not on a path to improve outcomes — then is it worth putting such a school up for a closure decision? Yes. The litmus tests should be rigorous but flexible.

      School ratings “should” be:

      Bad: Low proficiency
      Acceptable: Low proficiency and a track record of improvements
      Good On-grade proficiency
      Excellent: On-grade proficiency and a track record of improvements

      Does this answer your question?

      Publius

      Like

  8. M Ryder,

    Don’t shoot…I’m a messenger and noted, in several areas that Gov. Tom Wolf and others in PA are making unusual moves that suggest
    that the level of naiveté you suggest.

    I’m glad to lift these preliminary efforts up as I continue to meet agents of transformation, nationally. Specifically, I’m following several cities engaged in this work and commend it to Wilmington’s leaders. I directed the marketing efforts for the DE Symphony Assn. last century.

    Thanks for your comment and transformational thinking begins
    in small steps. You are correct and remind me that I’m still
    learning since I first began this awareness in 1983. Resulting from
    the recession of 1981, and as a fumbling young executive in a
    Fortune 50 Corporation, I was struck by the wisdom espoused
    in Dr. Deming’s book Out of Crisis.

    I do not work out of Kilroy’s basement.

    Like

  9. The funny thing about all this back and forth is the Matt Denni won’t be the next governor

    Like

  10. In ancient times along the Silk Road of Asia, caravans would ply the wares connecting East to West… Across dry barren lands they would travel. When sandstorms came up they took the carpets they were to sell, doubled them up and crawled under them for safety. They called these contraptions mat dens…

    Its a safe place in a storm.

    Liked by 1 person