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Edspresso LIVE! – Education Nation, Day 1

(Ongoing updates throughout the day – as technology allows – after the jump…)

8:25AM-
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All in the family

duncannea(originally posted on Politico‘s The Arena blog)

Unpopular positions? Tough love? The teachers unions want you to believe they are being punished by the president’s policies. It makes for great copy and provides cover for both the unions and the Education Department as they manipulate Capitol Hill for a second multi-billion dollar bailout. But the truth is, it’s all in the family.

The administration’s education policy, including the “Race to the Top” initiative, has been easy on unions and their members. States have received money for saying they are going to factor performance into evaluations, when in reality to make meaningful performance pay work, you must either require performance to trump local union contract provisions or change the contract itself. Additionally, districts have been paid money for saying they will turn around failing schools. No one in the status quo is hurting or being forced to change very much because of what the president is saying. The talk is good and strengthens reformers’ hands, but the teachers unions won’t feel any discomfort until someone or something cuts into the lock they have on how schools operate and how policy is crafted.

Read the entire post over at The Arena

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Excuse me. There's egg on your face.

eggonfaceThere is no more dedicated charter school foe than Gwinnett County Schools in Georgia. For years, they have targeted Ivy Preparatory Academy, a unique all-girls school in Norcross educating more than 300 students.

First they denied Ivy its charter. Then they fought the state board which overruled their rejection. Then they fought the constitutionality of the state board. Then they cried foul over a funding allocation process they say robs their kids of a quality education. That’s a lot of billable hours, no matter how you look at it. No big loss for a district with a $2 billion + annual budget, I guess.

But in this battle, David just keeps getting one up on Goliath. On the latest round of state tests, every girl at Ivy Prep passed the reading and language exams. To add a cherry on top of that, no traditional public school in Gwinnett County had multiple grade levels ace the tests, but its other charter school, New Life Academy of Excellence, did.

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