Tag Archives: Delaware

Delaware has no specific laws prohibiting parents from opting-out re: state standardized test @destateboarded @dedeptofed @foxnews @huffingtonpost @washingtonpost @arneduncan @DoverPost

I challenge anyone to provide a link to a Delaware or Federal Laws specifically prohibiting parents from opting their children out of state standardized test!

Though the federal law requires the states to test there is nothing in the way of prohibiting parents from opting out! Don’t get confused with what the feds say the states must do in regards to testing with law prohibiting parents from opting-out! There are none!

PROVE ME WRONG !!! SHOW ME A DELAWARE LAW THAT STATES “PARENTS CANNOT OPT-OUT THEIR CHILDREN” AND I’ll DELETE THIS BLOG!

H.B.#50 “This bill creates the right for the parent or guardian of a child to opt out of the annual assessment”. If there were a law prohibiting opting H.B.#50 would be amending it. 

Delaware Governor Markell draws the line in the sand for Merv and Freeman re: Priority Schools

Markell: ‘Won’t hesitate’ on priority schools Matthew Albright, The News Journal

Gov. Jack Markell says he would prefer not to close the six so-called “priority schools” in the City of Wilmington, or give them to a charter or other outside manager. But he won’t hesitate to do so if the Red Clay and Christian school districts can’t work out an agreement with the Department of Education.

“We’re in conversations now with both districts, and I hope those conversations produce good results,” Markell said. “But if it doesn’t, I will be in a position where I have to make a choice, and I won’t hesitate to make it.”

Markell addressed the controversy over the state’s Priority Schools proposal in a speech during the Conference on Education, an event hosted by the Vision Coalition of Delaware, a group of education, nonprofit and business leaders seeking to create world-class schools in Delaware.  

You know, I was on the fence re: right thing to do! However, I urge both Red Clay and Christina’s school boards and union leaders to say no to any Priority Schools MOU.

I think at best the Rodel’s sideshow called DE DOE should put the cards on the table to help secure the MOU. If NOT firing all teachers and requiring them to reapply is nonnegotiable then Governor Markell needs to let us know! Why go through all the bullshit in an alternative plan where the districts ask teachers to sign commitments to adhere to school model DE DOE request if it’s nonnegotiable. As far as the $160,000.00 for the school leader of these schools, totally insane!  

Governor Markell know damn well DE DOE does not have the capacity to effectively takeover six traditional public schools or even let a charter organization operate those schools. Moyer Academy is prime example of failure on DE DOE’s part! DE DOE is far from being proactive and stuck in a rut of being reactive! Markell’s playing the dictator card shouldn’t tolerated.

Public school located in Wilmington need a long-term solution that will require condensing the four traditional school districts within into two within the next three year than one within the next five years. Also, the expansion of charter schools in the city of Wilmington needs to be done in a way as not to negatively impacting existing traditional and yes even existing charter schools located in the city

The Markell educational band-aid approach is more about keeping his bullshit smokescreen in place until he leaves office. And you can bet once he is gone he’ll boast about how tough he got with public school teachers and leaders. If these six Wilmington Red Clay and Christina school were taken over, would their be a unified school board representing all six? Wilmington community leaders (the ones who aren’t circling Markell on their $$$ knees) should demand to see Markell’s takeover plan in the event it may happen. Does he have such a plan? If not, why is he going into this blindly? 

Perhaps by saying no to little Napoleon Markell it’s a good thing that will force legislative action to set the foundation for a long overdue Wilmington school district and the return of Wilmington High School to it’s rightful owners. Where are the laws allowing the governor to reach into local school taxes via a takeover? Furthermore, such a move will set the stage to end referendums and place the burden of raising school taxes on the local legislators. 

DE DOE would have their hands full with legal issues such as existing school / building contacts with service vendors including utilities. Transportation issues, labor contracts and much more! Then there is the issues of securing local school tax revenues! Folks by time Markell figures-out all of the takeover process his ass will be out-of-office. Would he really drop this mess in the lap of Governor Matt Denn? ( face folks, Matt Denn wins in 2016! That’s a given)

Dear Mr. Matthews and you amazing public traditional school teachers who don’t pick and chose your students, I am telling you, you are at the crossroad of a point of no return and setting the stage for complete corporate takeover of our public school system. You said, to the no strike clause presented under Governor DuPont for guaranteed due process and now that guarantee is null and void under a Priority Schools MOU presented by Markell. Governor Markell claims he is showing courage for his stance and I urge you to do the same! However, Markell may say yes to a district rebuttal whereas all teachers won’t be fired not even one! Hopefully he does! However, yes I know victory for his plan re: his MOU or a takeover of these schools would mean honest good effective teachers will lose their jobs. But is will cause a major political backlash that most-likely require legislative intervention! The new generation of teachers are emerging as the baby-boomer era teachers retire. Union leaders and members have to make a tough choice in rolling the dice! This Washington inspired Trojan Horse full of Wall Street Ponzi schemes most be stopped at the gates of Red Clay and Christina! Governor Markell is an enabler in this political dance and blaming the “system” for the damaged caused by him is disheartening. Standing up to Markell now will shake the political core of Delaware and have current legislators and want-to-be legislators scrambling for cover.      

Governor Markell isn’t fool enough to push the red-button that will cause major damage to the Delaware Demarcate rule! Or is he? I hope our state legislators demand Markell’s blueprint for taking-over these sex schools including financial impact before Markell pushed the red-button. Also, I think we’re at the defining moment in seeing what kind of leaders Freeman and Merv really are! They need to fire-back in the media in response to Markell’s political cat and mouse game using the bias media to his advantage. But as you can see, Merv hides behind his PIO. Folks public traditional education is at war and we need warriors and courage to say no to the likes of Markell carrying the Rodel education plan in his $$$ back pocket! As far as the other labor / trades in Delaware, you’re next as the foundation for ending prevailing wages are in the cross-hairs with the next wave of corporate takeover agents hide in the trenches!  Breaking the backs of the teachers union the most powerful labor union in the state and country is the first stepping stone to ending prevailing wages. FYI Jack Markell is a member of the Delaware Political Star Chamber and you can bet your ass he is thicker than thieves with Pete and re-Pete.               

Vote Steve Newton for real change and direction!

Stevenewton22

Breaking News!!! Charter School of Wilmington’s board approved changes in admissions putting Red Clay students at the bottom #netde #edude

My E-mail to Red Clay admin and school board on October 6, 2014 one day before CSW’s vote

Per CSW’s 10/07/2014 board agenda, there is a plan changing the admission preference order putting Red Clay students applicants “last”. Red Clay school board is the charter authorizing agent and CSW actions in my opinion is in violation of the charter agreement.

Current preference order:
A. Students who have specific-interest in CSW’s methods, philosophy or educational focus
B. Students residing within the Red Clay School District
C. Siblings of students enrolled in CSW
D. Children of CSW permanent Employees 

and proposed changes:
For discussion and action to revise the order of Admissions Preferences in the Student Admissions Policy. The proposed revised order of preferences is:
A. Students who have specific-interest in CSW’s methods, philosophy or
educational focus
B. Children of CSW permanent Employees
C. Siblings of students enrolled in CSW
D. Students residing within the Red Clay School District

Not good folks!!!!

I followed up with Red Clay admins and CSW’s board did vote and made changes in preference order. Red Clay had a representative on hand at the board meeting, Sam Golder and per district communications to me, “Our legal counsel reviewed the regulations to make sure CSW was in their right to make the change and determined that they were.”

My response back to Red Clay officials:

“I see CSW’s action as being modification of their charter with Red Clay. Yes, they are within the scope of the Delaware Charter school law. However, Red Clay is the authorizing charter authority and oversight body. Please forward me a copy of your communications to the Red Clay school board informing them of CSW action prior to taking it. As impact, is degrades freshman opportunities for children of Red Clay families. I would be highly disappointed to find out one or more or all Red Clay board members supported CSW’s call for such modification. School Board members are bound by their oath of office and if agreements were made by board members outside legal meetings then they are in clear violation of their oath of office. Our Red Clay school board is the governing body of Red Clay.”

www.coons.senate.gov Delaware Senator Chris Coons stays by as NCLB victimizes Delaware school children @chriscoons @Washingtonpost @huffingtonpost #edude #netde #neatoday @NSBAComm @NatlGovsAssoc @usedgov @arneduncan @educationOIG @destateboarded @NRP @WDDE911 @WDEL

To all parents of Delaware public school children: Delaware Senator Chris Coons is part of Team Rodel Foundation

Supported by Delaware Senator Chris Coons and the Rodels of the world, Delaware Secretary of Education Mark Murphy tired to move the overreaching arm of the federal government one step closer to hands-on management of an existing Delaware public schools via his Priority Schools MOU. Senator Coons knows without reauthorization of NCLB or  it’s elimination Murphy’s can manipulate the NCLB Wavier cards.  

Delaware Senator Chris Coons knows the embattled NCLB is still doing it’s job on demoralizing traditional public schools to justify charter schools via transformation re: Priority Schools.  

Delaware Senator Chris Coons does nothing after the United States Secretary of Education threatens this, “Mr. Duncan is promising to waive specific requirements of the law in exchange for states agreeing to adopt other efforts he has championed, such as linking teacher evaluations to student achievement, expanding charter schools and overhauling the lowest-performing schools. Effectively, he’s warning Congress that if it doesn’t overhaul the nine-year-old law, he’ll bypass lawmakers to get his way.” Then says this, “Principals, superintendents and children cannot wait forever for the legislative process to work itself out,” Mr. Duncan said in a conference call with reporters. “As it exists now, No Child Left Behind is creating a slow-motion train wreck for children, parents and teachers.”  Duncan has no authority to modify federal law called NCLB. Yet, Delaware Senator Chris Coons does nothing! Why? Because, this slow-motion train wreck is demoralizing traditional public schools to justify charter schools exactly what Senator Coons supports.

Red Clay’s school board should not take part in developing a compromised Priority Schools MOU. There comes a time to say enough is enough and now is that time. Yea yea, I know all about the NCLB agreed wavier! The board supported the super on the Race to The Top MOU and the NCLB Wavier and look where it’s taken us!

Folks only the federal government can withhold federal funds allocated under NCLB and hello, Title 1 funding is a sub-grant of NCLB aka ESEA. Can you imagine the political upheaval is Arne Duncan withheld Title 1 funding from Red Clay’s so-called three Priority Schools? Does anyone really think Delaware Secretary of Education Murphy has the capacity to effectively run three of Delaware’s / Red Clay’s traditional public schools? HE CAN’T! I assure you, if DE DOE moves to takeover these schools political fallout will be knocking on Senator Chris Coons, Senator Tom Carper and Rep. John Carney’s door!

 

Who said electric trains don’t blow smoke! They do with Senator Chris Coons aboard! But in the meantime Chris, your boy Mark Murphy can victimize Red Clay and Christina school children with your Rodel backing!  

Delaware: Fallout from historic charter school debate transcripts shakes admission preferences

SENATE SUBSTITUTE No. 1 FOR SENATE BILL No. 200  SENATE DEBATE TRANSCRIPTION

SENATOR MARSHALL:  Understanding that the harshest critics of charter schools around the nation where they’ve been in place and operating, is the issue of the schools skimming off the top and creating an elitist academy with public money. 

My concern is looking at the focus of the charter schools by attracting the best at times for a specific educational discipline offered by that charter school; and the concern of recruitment. 

I looked at children throughout New Castle County in moderate low income neighborhoods, I looked at the City, the west side, the east side, hilltop, I need to understand how your board and how you will guarantee fairness and equal access to every student from every unit

MR. MANNING:  Thank you Senator.  Let me approach that question two different ways because I hear the creaming argument over and over again with respect to schools of choice. 

One thing that particularly bothers me about that argument is that whoever is making the argument, whether you’re a member of the State PTA or whether you’re a Superintendent from a school district 100 miles away from a district that wants to try a charter, that person is basically saying I know better than the parents of that child where that child ought to attend.   But that’s an argument that I’ve never really understood, and it’s always been a little offensive to me. 

You also hear the suggestion that for some reason children whose parents are college educated and have jobs that pay more will somehow get the better end of the deal.  Which suggests that children of parents who for some reason don’t have a college education somehow aren’t able to cope in this system and aren’t able to make good choices for their children.  I don’t believe that.  And in Red Clay the experience is just the opposite. 

In Red Clay we’ve had schools of choice for the last three or four years.  And no school of choice has ever been populated on any basis other than a percentage, which mirrors the District in virtually every respect.  Socioeconomically, racially, schools of choice mirror their community. 

But let me get more specific about this particular school that has been proposed for Wilmington High.  I can tell you that the proponents and the participants in that charter consortium every one of them have come to the table saying, Governor one thing I want to make sure is that this is a school that provides an opportunity to every child in this district, every child in this area and I want to make sure that this school is not marked as an elitist school.  Not a school that you can only get into if you do well in science and math in grades one through eight. 

So what can we do to make sure that doesn’t happen?  Well the first thing you want to do is to make sure that you promote the school in the entire community.  I can tell you that that has worked successfully in some of our choice programs already and that the intention of this charter group is to do just that with a very elaborate solicitation and marketing program. 

You might also want to make sure that children who might not have done very well in math and science up to the point of ninth grade, nevertheless, have an opportunity to benefit by this school, which will be excellent in math and science. 

Well that suggests that you need some catch up.  That you need to take those children who have an interest in attending that school, perhaps have an affinity for those subjects but just haven’t done well at them up until that point and give them the extra boost that they need in order to be prepared for ninth grade at this school, which is going to be a rigorous academic year. 

And for that reason there is an organization called D.A.R.E. and it is an organization that is dedicated to the promotion of engineering sciences through the study of engineering and sciences among the minority population.  It runs a very successful program in Red Clay now and that organization has agreed to run a summer program for children who need some remediation before that ninth year begins. 

This will be a school which not only caters to those children who have already displayed excellence in math and science and takes them one step farther; it will also be a school that reaches out to those kids who think they want to succeed in that area and it says for you we have a special summer remediation program that you probably can’t get elsewhere.  That’s going to be part of this program.  I say it’s going to be part of this program, although I really ought to say as a member of the school board, that we’re going to wait and see the application. 

There are some things that I probably can’t tell you about the admissions process and the application process.  But I do know what’s in the minds of the consortium that has come together and agreed to sponsor this school.  And I can tell you that that’s upper most in their thinking. 

One other feature about this school, but I think it will apply to other charter schools as well, is this school made sure that it had a place for everyone.  I believe that we will, as time goes by, read in the newspaper every June that graduates of this school have also graduated from the best medical schools in the Country, the best engineering schools in the Country and are headed for PhDs and professional pursuits.

We’re also going to see for example the Medical Center benefit by an infusion of workers who come right from high school, who choose not to go to college, and who need a preparation in the business that the Medical Center attends to, which is healthcare.  That’s going to be available at this school.  The Medical Center is a very important participant. 

This is a school designed to take kids who want to go to higher education and perhaps graduate school and is also designed to provide kids who want to go right to work after school with better preparation, more job specific preparation than they’ll probably get in their regular high school. 

So for all those reasons it is not fair and it is certainly not accurate to say about this school that it will be an elites’ school in the sense that you meant.  However, I think it will be an elites’ school in another sense. 

The children who will come from all over that District and will come indeed from all over the County I hope, will achieve at a level perhaps not equaled at any other school in that area.  And in that sense, it will be elite. 

There will be a rigorous academic program, well resourced and the children will come to this school for that reason.  I believe when kids come to a school for a particular reason they are more likely to succeed.  I hope I’ve answered your question.

MADAM PRESIDENT:  Senator Marshall. 

SENATOR MARSHALL:  Madam President.  Mr. Manning you did, but I’d follow up with one other question.  How do we guarantee the parents who have the high level of concern that a charter school is really towards a private public school?  And if you look at the executives and the managers involved in the private sector, their background is college and maybe more than one degree. 

They encourage their employees and their family to seek out college and yet in order to get that fair balance in the student population, you can’t have that attitude prevail at the management level of the school.  And here we’re handing it over to the private sector and saying you’re going to handle recruitment and set up standards.  I mean how do we overcome that the poor kid from the Eastside or the Westside of Wilmington will not be given a fair opportunity? 

MR. MANNING: You do a couple of things.  First I should say that those managers that you’re talking about employ people; they hire people.  They know what skills people need in order to succeed in this marketplace particularly those kids who haven’t gone onto college.

I think we shouldn’t ever assume that any rising ninth grader is not going to go to college.  That should be a level of achievement or a goal perhaps for every ninth grader in this State.  There will be some however who don’t.  And the charge of this school, and I would say any high school has the same responsibility, is to make sure that those who don’t go on can nevertheless have a set of skills that they can market immediately. 

I can’t think of a school in New Castle County, say perhaps for the Vo-Tech Schools that will do a better job than the school that is imagined for the Academy of Math and Science. 

I mentioned the Medical Center.  The Medical Center wants to make sure that it has a stock of future technicians out there.  Those will be children who by large don’t have college degrees, but they need skills.  And the skills that the Medical Center wants to acquaint these children with won’t be skills that you pick up in our high schools right now. 

The final answer to your question is, you make sure that each one of those kids who lives in the areas that you described has a guidance counselor in eighth grade that is looking out for them and says this is a school for this kid and has the opportunity to get that child in that school. 

Make sure that each parent of such a child has a video tape in their hands showing them in their own living room the benefits of this school and you make sure you hear from those parents.  And there will be an effort to do that.

SENATOR MARSHALL:  Madam President just one final comment.  I think what you have conveyed is that the schools will not be exclusively a college prep institution but a welcome to all students who may just plan to complete twelfth grade and move on to the workplace.  

MR. MANNING:  That’s one of the fundamental precepts of this experiment. 

MADAM PRESIDENT:  Senator Sharp. 

SENATOR SHARP:  Thank you Madam President.  Welcome Mr. Manning. 

MR. MANNING:  Thank you Senator. 

SENATOR SHARP:  Mr. Manning under the charter school concept that you folks are planning for Wilmington High School, what happens to those kids who are now attending Wilmington High School who live out in my area where you’ve extended the feeder pattern and brought kids all the way out from Kirkwood Highway into Wilmington High School?  What happens to them?  Where would they go to school? 

MR. MANNING:  Those who are currently attending Wilmington High will continue to attend Wilmington High.  You’re talking about the upper classman who are there now?

SENATOR SHARP:  I’m talking about the kids that are in that feeder pattern whether they’re in the school today or scheduled to go there in September.

MR. MANNING:  If they are in the feeder pattern but aren’t in the school, they’ll have the same choice that everyone else has in the District; the choice to go to any one of our four schools.  That’s the group that is ninth grade and below; the rising ninth graders and below.

If you are in the school now…

SENATOR SHARP:  Excuse me for a minute that only applies up to the certain racial quotas?

MR. MANNING:  No, no. 

SENATOR SHARP:  You can’t have a racially identifiable school can you under the court order?

MR. MANNING:  We haven’t had a racially identifiable school that is a choice school yet.  So there is no reason to limit what the computer does when it sorts out the applications for a choice school. 

SENATOR SHARP:  Choice is a relatively new project that you’ve tried; I think this is the first year for it, is it not? 

MR. MANNING:  We have schools of choice that are now going into their third or fourth year; I can’t remember which, at Wilmington High School for example…

SENATOR SHARP:  Yeah but that’s a little different concept than what you’re talking about.

MR. MANNING:  Last year for the first year…this will be the second year coming up where children can choose their schools from all over the district.  Now last year…

SENATOR SHARP:  Aren’t they still governed though by this court order?

MR. MANNING:   Yes sir they are.  Last year we had an experience with that.

SENATOR SHARP:  Then my question again would be, for the kids who live in my district, my neighborhood, who are now forced to go into Wilmington High School, can’t go across the street to Dickinson because of the court order and because of your feeder pattern.  When and if Wilmington High School becomes a charter school, where will those kids go to school if there’s not room in that charter school?

MR. MANNING:  If the court order isn’t lifted then those children will have to…the choices will continue…they won’t have choices, they’ll have to go to Wilmington High School if the Federal Judge says so.  We’re obviously working to correct that and I think we will be successful.

SENATOR SHARP:  Excuse me let me back up just a minute then.  How can it be a charter school if the kids have to go there, which they do now?

MR. MANNING:  I’m sorry I should have said this in the beginning.  The charter school that we’re talking about will only be a portion of what goes on in that building.  Just as is the case right now there are several schools within that school.  The charter school that the DuPont Company, Bell Atlantic, Zeneca, The Medical Center, and I’m sure I’m leaving somebody else out, which I apologize; that applies only to the new Academy of Math and Science; which is only a portion of what’s going on at Wilmington High. 

SENATOR SHARP:  How many students?

MR. MANNING:  It hasn’t opened yet.

SENTATOR SHARP:  Well I mean how many openings?  You’ve only got “x” number of seats in the school.  How many students will be in the charter school?

MR. MANNING:  It’s designed to have entering classes of up to 200 children. 

SENATOR SHARP:  So you’ll have a freshman class, 9th grade I guess of 200?

MR. MANNING:  Yes.  That’s the max.

SENATOR SHARP:  And how many freshmen do you normally have in the school?

MR. MANNING:  I’m going to say entering classes have been somewhere in the neighborhood of 200 children in that school.  But that’s an average and I’d rather you didn’t hold me to that because I don’t know the specific number.

SENATOR SHARP:  Okay but you said that 200 of the freshman class would be in the charter school but you’re also telling me that that’s a total of the freshman class.  So you have a student body of 800?

MR. MANNING:  The charter school if it takes as many children as it hopes to take, 200 children per grade, would have 800.  The school itself, the building, has a capacity, and please don’t hold me to this but if I’m in the right neighborhood of roughly 1,600.  And that makes room for the other educational programs that are going on in that building, for example the Calloway School has 300 kids. 

SENATOR SHARP:  You’ve confused me a little bit.

MR. MANNING:  I’m sorry.

SENATOR SHARP:  You say you have a capacity in the building for 1,600 students?

MR. MANNING:  Roughly yes.

SENATOR SHARP:  Okay I won’t hold you to that; 1,550, 1,650, somewhere in that neighborhood.  We’ll use 1,600 for round figures.

MR. MANNING:  Thank you.

SENATOR SHARP:  And you only have 800 in the school?

MR. MANNING:  In the Academy of Math and Science.  There will be other schools…

SENATOR SHARP:  No at the present time there are 800 students attending that school.

MR. MANNING:  Oh roughly. 

SENATOR SHARP:  Okay.  Where are you going to get all of these students?  I’m having a hard time and I’m looking at this purely from an appropriable point of view; my District, my neighborhood, my kids, who are now forced to go to Wilmington High School.

MR. MANNING:  They are forced to go to Wilmington High School because of an order that was entered in 1978 which hopefully will be lifted.  I can’t, as much as I’d like to, I can’t do anything about that. 

SENATOR SHARP:  I understand.

MR. MANNING:  We will provide a school for those children, a full blown traditional high school for those children, to the extent the court order continues to require those children to go to Wilmington High.  And there is room to do that. 

SENATOR SHARP:  So even with all this the kids in my neighborhood who would like to go back to Dickinson, which is a half a mile up the road or closer for most of them, would still not be able to go to Dickinson.  Keeping in mind the court order, we don’t know what’s going to happen with that. So they’re still going to have to go to Wilmington High School.  Now we’re going to throw the charter school in there.  Those kids may not be eligible to be charter school students. 

MR. MANNING:  Every child is eligible to be a charter school student.  There are no admission…

SENATOR SHARP:  Well there’s some criteria isn’t there?

MR. MANNING:  No.  The decision has been made not to impose admissions criteria on this school.

SENATOR SHARP:  You just got done saying with math and science.

MR. MANNING:  That’s correct.

SENATOR SHARP:  Not every child is suited or able to do well with a math and science curriculum.

MR. MANNING:  But there is no rule imposed by the District that says you can come and you can’t.  That’s a decision…

SENATOR SHARP:  But they’re going to be eliminated purely by their academic ability. 

MR. MANNING:  No. 

SENATOR SHARP:  Well if you’re not proficient in math and science, how are you going to take that in a charter school?

MR. MANNING:  If you’re not proficient in math and science than presumably you wouldn’t seek admission to this school. 

SENATOR SHARP:  Well then you’re running me around a circle Mr. Manning; I’m starting to get a headache. 

MR. MANNING:  I’m sorry. 

SENATOR SHARP:  I’m talking about the kids in my neighborhood who have to go in there.  You said they could go into charter school.  I’m saying maybe they are not proficient.  You said well they wouldn’t have to go to that school.  Then where in the hell are these kids going to school? 

MR. MANNING:  To the extent that there are children who will remain forced under a court order to go to Wilmington High School, they will have the option of attending the Academy of Math and Science or the current traditional program that is there right now.  And those two programs will be run side by side for as long as the Federal Court requires the attendance of certain kids at that school.  Does that answer your question? 

SENATOR SHARP:  No.  But I’m not going to continue this conversation.  But I can tell you this I think what we’re talking about here and what this Legislation does will be extremely unfair to the kids that I represent. 

MR. MANNING:  The children that you represent have made choices this spring for what school they want to attend.  They have the option of attending any of the four schools in the district and those choices will be honored unless the Federal Court says you have to make them go to Wilmington High. 

SENATOR SHARP:  Mr. Manning do you remember last year when the kids made those choices…

MR. MANNING:  Yes sir.

SENATOR SHARP: …and you guys pulled the plug on them a week before school started?

MR. MANNING:  Yes sir.  And this year we have made sure that every child sending in the application and telling us what their choices are, and that’s every kid in the District including yours; we have made sure that every one in the District knows that this plan, which has nothing to do with a charter school, this plan may yet be foiled by the continued presence of that court order.  But we’re trying as hard as we can to get that lifted. 

MADAM PRESIDENT:  Senator Marshall.

SENATOR MARSHALL:  Madam President I move to excuse the witness. 

MADAM PRESIDENT:  Senator Venables you have a question for the witness?

SENATOR VENABLES:  Yes Madam President.  Mr. Manning you’ve been in the chamber I think most of the afternoon.  You’ve probably heard most of the statements concerning pilot programs.  You’ve heard that probably we need to go a little slower in this. 

Those two things kind of worry me a little bit and I think that as members of the Senate we ought to use all the wisdom we can gather in this issue and maybe some of the wisdom that we brought with us when we came up here. 

Do you see any validity in what was said here this afternoon as far as a pilot program?  It sounded like to me that you are very enthusiastic about this school.

MR. MANNING:  Yes I am.

SENATOR VENABLES:  And I am to some degree enthusiastic about a charter school.  But, I’m also enthusiastic you know that maybe we do need one particular charter school to start with to see how the thing works. 

The discussion that I just heard between Senator Sharp and yourself even maybe gives more strength to that issue that maybe we need to see how this thing is going to work before we unleash this in different districts all through the State. 

MR. MANNING:  Senator, the Bill as I understand it particularly with the amendments that were included today with the Bill, creates no risk that you or this body will be unleashing this throughout the State.  Because it now takes care to ensure that the parents and the teachers of schools throughout the State and the school boards throughout the State will be the ultimate bodies to decide whether any school becomes a charter school.  It won’t be dictated from Dover. 

SENATOR VENABLES:  Well I don’t mean it to be dictated but I think the scenario that Senator Marshall was talking about, maybe you do have 50 percent of these people that fall in the category that would want to start this charter school and maybe convince the Superintendent to go along with it. 

MR. MANNING:  Right.

SENATOR VENABLES:  Wouldn’t that give them the power to do it over the objections of the other people that might not want to?

MR. MANNING:  Yes there’s a one word answer to that question and it’s yes.  There will be a point if the question comes up with respect to any particular school where the majority of the teachers and the majority of the parents are asked to express their preference; whether they should become a charter school or not. 

I don’t know how else to decide whether there is a consensus in the community for doing that other than asking them.  But I say again, that’s much better in my view. Asking the community to decide that question is better than having the State Board of Education decide, having a local board of education exclusively decide or having folks in this room decide.  

This Bill does nothing but create opportunity for individual districts.  It doesn’t require them to take advantage of anything. 

SENATOR VENABLES:  I understand that and I feel a lot better with the Bill with the amendments on it than I did without the amendments.  But at this particular point do you understand what the so called, maybe it’s not a mad rush, but the rush to implement this so quick?  Are we going to lose the opportunity if we do more research or if we hold public hearings on this the way it was suggested by the PTA?

MR.MANNING:  Those public hearings have been provided for in an amendment which I understand was put on the Bill earlier this afternoon.  And the important public hearings that need to be held on whether any school becomes a charter school, I would submit with all due respect, are not public hearings in front of the State Board and are not public hearings in front of DPI.  They are public hearings in the area which is considering whether to become a charter school or not.   And the same evidence that Ms. Krause wants to talk about can be discussed by the community that’s actually going to be affected. 

There’s no need to prolong the extension of the invitation to local districts and to individual schools to become a charter school.  That opportunity should be made available now.  You’re not making the decision that any school is going to become a charter school.  But it seems to me that a decision ought to be made in that school community, not here.  And there’s no reason to delay this process any further so that people in some committee that’s created at the State level can look at data that is readily available to every school district in this State. 

SENATOR VENABLES:  Thank you.

MR. MANNING:  Thank you. 

MADAM PRESIDENT:  Senator McDowell.

SENATOR McDOWELL:  Thank you Madam President.  Mr. Manning when you talk about public hearings occurring at the school district level, let me ask you if we pass this Legislation and a school district, let’s say Red Clay, decides it wants to do a charter school, they have public hearings.  People come and say, they don’t want charter schools and the Red Clay Board goes in and has a charter school. What remedy is there? 

MR. MANNING:  If you pose in your hypothetical with respect to most of the charter school opportunities created by this Bill that the people say they don’t want a charter school, then under the terms of the amendment that was just passed, except for special circumstances, the school does not become a charter school. 

SENATOR McDOWELL:  And it has to be 50 percent of the teachers and the parents.  So you actually hold a referendum?

MR. MANNING:  Senator that’s what I understand as required by that amendment.  I have only seen it today so I don’t know. 

SENATOR McDOWELL:  Maybe I should have brought that up with the amendments here.  I just don’t know how that’s going to…

MR. MANNING:  I understood that to be the testimony on this floor when that amendment was before the Senate.  That it would require those votes among those two groups of folks, teachers and parents. 

SENATOR McDOWELL:  For the record, you said that you’ve got 200 slots for the Math Academy that you’re setting up in Red Clay, is that correct?

MR. MANNING:  That is a general target.  I need to say that the group that has come forward and said we’re willing to assist this school and expect we’re going to be its sponsor, has yet to file an application.  Obviously they haven’t filed an application because this Legislation hasn’t yet passed. 

We’ll learn a lot more about how they propose to proceed as that application comes in.  I’m in a sense speculating based on conversation that I’ve heard.  That conversation says roughly 200 kids per class. 

SENATOR McDOWELL:  You have an existing choice in math at Wilmington High, is that not right?

MR. MANNING:  The Academy of Math and Science, yes.  And there will be…

SENATOR McDOWELL:  An extra 200 slots you referred to?

MR. MANNING:  That was up to 200, there will not be 200…

SENATOR McDOWELL:  And how many applications have you had? 

MR. MANNING:  I think it’s somewhere around 60 the last time I looked. 

SENATOR McDOWELL:  And out of a student base of what?

MR. MANNING:  All rising ninth graders, which would make it 1,200.

SENATOR McDOWELL:  Sixty out of 1,200.

MR. MANNING:  That’s about right. 

SENATOR McDOWELL:  Thank you. 

MR. MANNING:  That application procedure will continue through the summer and we expect those numbers of applications to grow. 

MADAM PRESIDENT:  Senator Marshall.

SENATOR MARSHALL:  Madam President I move to excuse the witness. 

MADAM PRESIDENT:  Without objection the witness is excused.  Thank you very much.  Senator Sokola.

Please take comments to the seventh type (blog) Mike O here ……. Mike O has provided this documentation and his own personal views worthy of everyone viewing. Mike thanks for digging up this document it helps bring much of the debate towards the truth that was hidden in archives.  

Delaware Sec of Education’s Common Core Standards / SBAC Workshop was a complete FLOP re: survey poll

Outreach with Local Boards and Charter Boards – Workshop on Assessment Transitions and CCSS Implementation Update – 2/6/14

117 Participants representing local boards, charter boards, superintendents, charter leaders, district curriculum supervisors, teachers, parents, business leaders, legislators, and community members.  All resources from the event are posted in the online agenda (accessed via Special SBE MEETING 2/6/14 on our website) Complete Q&A document for all questions submitted at the workshop is being posted soon. Survey Summaries are compiled in the document attached below.

Notice the survey didn’t ask participants if they felt Common Core Standards and The Smarter Balanced Assessment was the right path forward.

Typical Delaware and Governor Jack Markell, signs us up for Common Core Standards and The Smarter Balanced Assessment and then indoctrinates even clueless legislators. 

What amazes me the most is, there are students in the system that have taken DSTP and DCAS and now will be required to take The Smarter Balanced Assessment. God help some of these students who are college-bound and DE DOE’s predictions are next year when the Smarter Balanced is rolled out student scores will drop because the standards are higher! If students can’t reach the current achievement standards why are we making them higher?

Well here it is; Delaware the only state that uses intelligence level as specific interest admission clause re: charter school

See for yourself how Delaware’s charter school laws stack-up against other state’s.

Delaware’s charter school law that allows charter schools to use intelligence as “specified interest” is out of the norm with other states that gives all students equal chances when applying to a charter school. Go to the link above and see for yourself.

Delaware’s charter school laws clearly impedes on one’s civil right in regards to equal access to public schools. Delaware charter school application needs to mirror application to all traditional public schools.

Examples;

Massachusetts:

(2) Charter schools may not administer tests to potential applicants or predicate enrollment on results from any test of ability or achievement. Requirements for enrollment in a charter school, including but not limited to attendance at informational meetings and interviews, shall not be designed, intended, or used to discriminate. Charter schools may not require potential students and their families to attend interviews or informational meetings as a condition of enrollment.

Colorado:

No. The Charter Schools Act [C.R.S. 22-30.5-104 (3)] prohibits discrimination based on academic ability. Diagnostic or placement exams may be given to students after they have been officially enrolled. As with all public schools, a charter school may create eligibility thresholds for enrollment that are consistent
with their area of focus or grade levels, but the school’s methods for determining eligibility cannot be designed, intended, or used to discriminate on the basis of a child’s knowledge, skills, or disability. For instance, a charter high school may deny admission to a student not completing the 8th grade, but it cannot deny admission to a student who has an “unsatisfactory” score on a CSAP test

NJ’s Jimmy Olsen King Cake surprise! “Rockstar teachers” @huffingtonpost @washingtonpost @the_gambit @usatoday

I was sitting here wondering whatever happen to that punkass Cajun from the bayous of Whiskey Bay. He seems like a nice guy and I think it would be nice next summer we have a crawl-fish blog-summit to meet him. Hey Greg call 867-5309 to see if Jenny would like to attend:). Apparently Jimmy has been in King Cake heaven. Jimmy, I hope by now you have met the Red Clay’s Craw-daddy. I am sure he would of enjoy some of that King Cake. Anyhow, Jimmy has a blog post on the NJ’s blog “Delware Ed” (no at real blog because you can’t say fuck). So here is part of it and do go back to read the entire post:   

What do budget projections mean for teacher pay?

Markell has also said he wants to create “alternate career paths” so rockstar teachers can move up the career ladder without leaving the classroom to become a principal or administrator. – 

So if rockstar teachers remain in the classrooms how do we get rockstar principals and administrators? I get it! From Teach for America and the Vision Network of Delaware. We’ll get leaders like the Delaware Secretary of Education Mark Murphy. So who needs seasoned teachers who walked the talk to become rockstar as principals, district and state education leaders when a two-year gym teacher rewired by Rodel clones to be a corporate seagull talking shit from a Wall Street script that can be the Elvis of education? FYI !! Every teacher who walks into a classroom on the first day is a rockstar but the abuse of the wrongheaded Markell agendas tied to the Wall Street Trojan Horse with Race to The Top stuck up it’s ass transform many teachers into rockstar roadies standing on the sidelines making rockstars look good and sound good! Markell has made other Delaware Democrats look BAD! Jack Markell sends Murphy down to Jeb Bush to join his Chief for Change to put a marker down for future consultant work for both Murphy and himself. And God only knows why State House Representative Darryl Scott Chairman of the House Education Committee gave Murhpy his blessing and asked other legislators to do the same ! Hey Rep Scott? Did you hear “BUSH”! 

Education spending is already set to grow automatically by some $37 million to cover increasing enrollment and mandatory “step increases” in pay for teachers as they gain more experience. During tough budget times like this, this mandatory growth in costs squeezes the rest of the budget. 

Jimmy when your done drinking your Yoohoo and playing World of Warcraft on Lois Lane’s PC think of this, Markell get’s his extra money by putting the “sgueeze” on local school districts to force them to use local share of tax-dollars to back-fill “his” agendas. And odds are Markell is telling the buyers of Fisker, fuck it you don’t have to pay outstanding Red Clay school taxes! I am not picking on you Jimmy.

What about making structural changes that don’t involve new spending, but reshuffle how the system works? Changing the pay structure without any kind of bonus could lead to an uphill battle.

Jimmy it comes down to this, teachers don’t want bonuses! They want to stop being boned! 

Or maybe Markell shelves the teacher pay proposal for now and waits until a sunnier fiscal picture emerges. After all, he doesn’t leave office until January of 2017.

Boy got fetch me a hickory stick! Don’t you read the News Journal? Markell has been out office since taking oath for his second-term. No, not lame-duck but lame-ass! I hear Jack Markell saying why can’t I wind my clock three year forward so this nightmare ends! Markell lacks the grit, courage, vigor and capacity to do what’s right and dump the coach! Only if Jack really knew what was going on at Moyer! 

We probably won’t know for sure until Markell proposes his budget next month. But it’s certainly something to watch out for.

Now I get it Jimmy! You’ve been nipping at the Everclear 🙂 Hey next time you’re down in Port Arthur see if you can spit from the top of the Rainbow Bridge and hit the water before the wind blows it to the shoreline. But for real Jimmy. I like your blog post because it real and unscripted. Delaware is a great place to be a somebody and a nobody 😉 Publius. 

Read Jimmy’s entire blog post here……………

Breaking! U.S. District Court favors Reach Academy

Courts give Reach Academy a little CPR! Our state legislators need to engage this issue! Education will continue to be an election issue!

Legislators ! Ask yourselves why did DE DOE take Reach off of probation last school year? Ask yourselves why did DE DOE approve Reach’s request last school year to relocate to a new building because they wanted to better serve students? Legislators ask yourselves why did Markell selected the least qualified person to be Delaware’s Secretary of Education? Three years as a gym teacher, two years as an administrator and grooming by the Vision Network !

Delaware Governor Jack Markell is the self proclaimed Delaware Education Czar! WHY? He apparently ordered the manipulation of Race to The Top four-year federal grant to reserve funding for a fifth-year ! Keep an eye on U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan who “will” soon announce approval of extending the four-year grant to five -year. Not more money but allows Jack to hold back monies needed now to help schools like Reach Academy to pay for all those unneeded positions at DE DOE! They “created” a job for Judas of all things.

Delaware legislators also note DE DOE’s charter school framework is still in development and wasn’t part of the original charter agreement between Reach and DE DOE. Fairly good framework I’ll admit but Murphy and Markell are changing the rules on the fly and require charter schools to dance through the hoops!

Delaware Legislators stop further approval of new charter school applications that have not yet be approved until Markell cleans up his DE DOE mess! We need changes in the DE DOE Charter School Office NOW!

The Delaware Department of Education has become the overreaching arm of federal and state “Markell” intrusion! What about The Smarter Balanced Assessment set to replace DCAS? Legislators when did you approve this? YOU DIDN’T! Murphy is about to roll you under the bus with manipulation of  state education legislation! STOP HIM! Ask for explanation as why parts of The Smarter Balanced Assessment will be scored bu “humans” whereas teachers must wait for results!

As for my former Republican Party! YOU SUCK when it comes to education and “PROTECT” Jack Markell! We need good third-party candidates who have the knowledge about these concerning education matters! Education consumes one-third the state budget ! FYI there is RTTT money to pay for digital recorders for charter schools “Debbie”. Enhancing communication does help with parental involvement and improves local control ! And translates into improving student achievement! Seems like the Speaker of The House doesn’t want parents and the community to have greater “control”.

I have issues with charter schools aka the laws that governs them! I do support charter schools as a right of choice! But why use high poverty schools like Reach who is crawling out from a disaster caused by the former school leader? They need help and guidance and with DE DOE shifting to an authoritarian body not one of support via technical assistance, schools like Reach are being victimized by an out of control and of focus Delaware Department of Education that lack capacity and grits they want to sell others! And OMG! The charter school queen Ms. Hospitality needs to take her skills to Motel 6. Her organization takes fees from charter schools like Reach for “professional services” yet drives a knife in Reach’s back when the need the most help! I made an error in a previous referring to Reach paying membership fees to this organization. The money I was referring to was for professional services! So why is a vendor jamming one on the back of Reach! These so-called non-profits want to reform our school system and our legislators better wake their asses up!

Publius, I support charter schools and DE DOE is doing them more harm than any of my rhetoric.

Reach Lawsuit “filed” against Delaware Department of Education #Edude #NetDe @destateboarded @dedeptofed @Ed_in_De Posted on November 26, 2013 by kilroysdelaware

Bill Gates wants your child’s Social Security number and more!

Bill Gates’ $100 million database to track students By Michael F. Haverluck /Wind Education

Over the past 18 months, a massive $100 million public-school database spearheaded by the $36.4 billion-strong Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has been in the making that freely shares student information with private companies.

The system has been in operation for several months and already contains millions of K-12 students’ personal identification ‒ranging from name, address, Social Security number, attendance, test scores, homework completion, career goals, learning disabilities, and even hobbies and attitudes about school.

Claiming that the national database will enhance education, the main funder of the project, the Gates Foundation, entered the joint venture with the Carnegie Corporation of New York and school officials from a number of states. After Rupert Murdoch’s Amplify Education (a division of News Corp) spent more than a year developing the system’s infrastructure, the Gates Foundation delivered it to in Bloom ‒ a nonprofit corporation recently established to run the database.

Read more——————————

Parents really need to wake up! Student personal information needs to be private and not used for tracking! 

“Turning massive amounts of personal data about public school students to a private corporation without any public input is profoundly disturbing and irresponsible,” New York Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Donna told the Daily News. 

Well one thing for sure, proud card carrying capitalist Delaware Governor Jack Markell will handover student personal information for a few political points to the Wall Street money-bags. Delaware legislators need to pass a law forbidding student personal information from being released to private corporation and make it a criminal offense in doing so!  

QTD; Are Delaware’s traditional black public schools better than Delaware’s black charter schools? #netDE #edude

Many of us in Delaware agree with Delaware’s flawed charter school law that allows discrimination by academic ability, Choice school law that only is afforded to those with means of transportation to participate and a neighborhood school law resembling nothing more than reservations for black students creates de facto segregation that is more burdensome to black families than white families.

So the question of the day is, are traditional Delaware black public schools better than Delaware black charter schools? Some might question what I mean by “traditional” black public schools. Answer, those that are mainly city schools where poor parents can’t afford or don’t have reliable transportation to participial in school choice. Delaware’s Choice school law does not provide funding for transportation to and from a school of choice  As for charter schools, the chances of at-risk students getting into a charter school is greater if the the charter schools is designed to serve at-risk students whereas others are more selective based on academic success.

I think we can agree there are two kinds of parents when it comes to education regardless of color! Parents who are engaged in their children’s education and those who don’t give a rat’s ass! Or perhaps a third, parents with pure unintended ignorance that lack skills to engage or effectively advocate for their children! Damn, there might even be a forth! Grandparents raising their grandchildren. One of the first things come to mind about choosing charters is perhaps they are safer environments and have behavior standards that are more strict. In the case of Wilmington Delaware, black charter schools are locate closer to predominantly black neighborhoods in efforts to satisfy the neighborhood concept. No doubt attending any charter school is purely by choice! Therefore, the creation of what appears to be segregated schools by charter is by free will. However, creating charter schools in high poverty areas designed to serve at-risk students struggling to achieve the so-called standards appear to have the so-called bar set lower in contrast to charter schools with specific interest built around applicants academic success. Which is a better school and serves students better, a school that students enter as at-risk and leaves meeting the standards or a school where students leave exceeding the standards? Which group of students is better prepared for college or the so-called global economy? Does sending your child to a charter school provide some sense of status over those who attend traditional public school?

Once thing traditional schools are losing to charter schools is real advocates that can make a different for all students and the community! Back in William Hicks Anderson days there were no charter schools and the fight was to change the traditional schools. So today, we have a generation of parents who are content with segregated charter schools as long as the school can help their children meet the standards. More and more black students are attending college but those just meeting the standards of K-12 will struggle and that goes the same for white students. I don’t know how to say this but I feel schools that are designed to serve at-risk students are dumbing-down the curriculum. All schools have programming within to serve at-risk students via supplemental services but a school designed to serve at-risk students seems like a flawed plan. It appears society has determined at-risk students are a level of special ed students. If a K-5 black charter school can’t have all students reading on or above grade level they aren’t any better than a traditional school! But we’re back to contrast! If a black charter school can’t do any better than a traditional black schools what difference does it make? The feel good sensation my child attends a charter school is good for parents but what value is it for the child? Don’t get me wrong, there are predominantly black charter schools exceeding the standards but keep in mind there a exceptions to all rules!

There will come a day of awakening! I might not be putting into it into words correctly but deep down I feel minorities are still being undeserved even by the charter school movement! The white charter school reformist of yesterday were crafty enough to set laws ensuring specific interest self-serving to the status quo at the same time allowing minorities the flexibility to create their own charter schools. However, in contrast (word of the day) the analogy goes like this, ships built with steel haulls are stronger that ones build with wooden haulls. Is there really equal equity between white and black charter schools? Is there really racial diversity among the groups steering education reform including charter schools? Rich white man are controlling the direction of public education that allows Wall Street ed companies greater share of the $$$ pie! Where “is” the minority voice of the “community” when it comes to shaping education reform? The word public in public education shouldn’t be tainted by color but the reality is one color might have greater say over the other! Calling out the NAACP guards because Christina School District doesn’t want to give teacher bonuses for the job they are getting paid to do at the same time not rallying for the sake of overall justice for racial disparities in education is a civil injustice in itself!

DE DOE & SBE turning a blind-eye on the New Moyer charter re: transparency #netDE #edude @dedeptofed @destateboarded

The old Maurice J Moyer Academy was taken over be the Delaware Department of Education who in-turn hire K12.Inc to operate Moyer for SY2010-2011 and 2011-2012 until a permanent solution was found. The “New” Maurice J Moyer  was approved to start this school year 2012-2013 the fiscal school year for all public and charter schools starts on July 1 of each year. So for The New Maurice J Moyer it was July 1 ,2012. My concern here is purely transparency nothing else. Go visit The New Maurice J Moyer Academy website and try to find the board approved FY2013 budget, who the CBOC committee members are, CBOC meeting dates. agenda and minutes, the board of directors meeting dates, agenda, minutes, IRS990 forms and no monthly finanical reports. 

What a wonderful for a “new” Delaware charter school to start, IN THE DARK!

I have a hunch the Delaware Secretary of Education Mark Murphy will be selling The New Maurice J Moyer to Pencader parents and students! Good old Delaware Department of Education, setting up parents and students for another let down! Never forget, some of Pencader shortcomings led right back the Delaware Department of Education and the Delaware State Board of Education sits around with their thumbs up their asses and doesn’t do a damn thing about theses school websites that create stealth school operations closed to public view! The public shouldn’t have to file FOIA because the Delaware Department of Education and Delaware State Board of Education turns a blind-eye to schools that can’t adhere to transparent even when mandated by legislation. 

No Cindy and Publius I am not picking on another charter school or the charter school movement! You both come in trying to save Pencader that was on it’s death bed but you did nothing before as Pencader slipped into the dark-side of transparency. Will you put up the same fight for The New Maurice J Moyer Academy? Publius if you were in here just to try to save Pencader and not to address the transparency shortfalls damaging public education shame on you!  

To the state legislators who visit Kilroy’s Delaware, go to Moyer’s website and see for yourselves! Also, there are other charter schools lacking in transparency and even some public school districts. We need uniform laws with “$$$ fines” to the schools and district who fail to comply. Government cannot be it’s own watchdog! Give the people the tools and we will flush out those who capitalize on public education and set roadblocks for real parental and community involvement 

Wake up Moyer parents and own “your” school!  

Positive Outcome Charter School community review #netDE #edude

Positive Outcomes Charter School on deck for community review @ DELAWARE PUBLIC / CHARTER SCHOOL REVIEW blog

Go  to the above highlighted link and read my review and do yours. Comment section here on Kilroy’s is close but open at DELAWARE PUBLIC / CHARTER SCHOOL REVIEW blog