HITTING LEFT #111

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Voucher sugar daddies


The gang from Wal-Mart is doing much more for the voucher cause than just instructing employees to vote McCain:

From the OrlandoSentinel.com

A national pro-voucher group called All Children Matter has raised $2.1 million -- nearly $1.4 million of it from the Arkansas heirs of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton -- to elect pro-voucher legislative candidates here this year.

From the St. Petersburg Times

The daughter of Wal-Mart's founder wrote a check for $836,000 in May to a group working to pass two questions on the November ballot to expand school vouchers in Florida. Alice Walton's donation was the largest single check among nearly $12-million raised in Florida in the past three months by interest groups and individual candidates for state offices.

Kette gets it

Eduwonkette has been right on the money lately. She’s one of the few ed bloggers who really gets the significance of the divide between the two new policy formations, the Broader, Bolder Approach and the so-called Educational Equality Project (EEP). Her latest include some stinging exposes of the phony achievement –gap reports coming out EEP-er Joel Klein’s office (she even manages to turn the test-crazy Klein into a post-modernist), plus research by Suet-Ling Pong supporting BBA’s proposition that,

…postulates that school improvement—which includes holding schools accountable for students’ learning and development—can’t do it alone. Rather, investments in communities, families and other social institutions that shape children’s lives outside of formal schooling are critical to moderating the powerful linkage between socioeconomic advantage and children’s learning and development.

Merrow’s table

In answer to Sherman Dorn’s “who’s missing” question, from here it appears that to have a seat at John Merrow’s table , you have to be white (absolutely), not a teacher (definitely), and a member of a right-wing think-tank (most likely). As PreaPrez sez: the panel is so right, “it threatens to fall off the edge of the earth.” Bolder, Broader’s Weingarten and Ravitch make some decent comments about swamp called NCLB, but nothing really new or helpful here.

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Russo, on the other hand, links to an interesting interview with Chicago Teacher Union’s Julie Washington. She went to a charter school conference and came back with some fresh insights.

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