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Current Issue

The race for City Hall

Jobs and schools promise to be top issues in next year’s city elections. The mayor’s education agenda faces its toughest test in the African-American communities that gave him strong support in 2011.

In the News: Public ed measures on many ballots

The Washington Post has a roundup on some of the important races around the country that matter to public education.

Through Twitter feeds, Facebook pages, and text messages, districts are giving parents news and information about their children's schools.

Florida voters appear to have pretty soundly rejected an amendment to the state constitution that would have prohibited state government from discriminating (specifically in terms of financial aid) against religious organizations, including schools with religious affiliations. (Education Week)

A referendum to enshrine collective bargaining rights in the Michigan state constitution failed to pass last night, according to reports from the Great Lakes State. Unions poured hundreds of thousands of dollars in support of the referendum, with Michigan Education Association reportedly spending about half a million, so a defeat comes as a big disappointment to them. (Education Week)

California voters weighed in on a ballot measure Tuesday that would raise taxes by $6 billion annually over seven years, bringing an end to an acrimonious, $123 million battle between Gov. Jerry Brown, who said the money was necessary to save the state’s public schools, and conservative opponents in and outside the state. (The New York Times


Anonymous wrote 2 years 2 weeks ago

Idaho rejects "reforms"

Idaho rejected a number of "reforms," while giving Romney a landslide.

Anonymous wrote 2 years 2 weeks ago

Idaho laws

Thank you, Diane.

Anonymous wrote 2 years 2 weeks ago

The Money Behind Charter Referenda, by Diane Ravitch

Cracking the Story about Money Behind Charter Referenda
November 7, 2012

Some investigative journalist is going to win major prizes for breaking open the story about the money and the motives of those promoting privatization of public education.
Motoko Rich drops tantalizing hints in her story in the New York Times. We learn that the charter referendum in Georgia was funded by “out-of-state donors, including Alice Walton, the daughter of the founder of Walmart, Sam Walton; Americans for Prosperity, the Tea Party group founded by the billionaire Koch brothers; and several companies that manage charter schools. Supporters of the amendment outspent opponents by about 15 to 1.”
The Georgia amendment was based on ALEC model legislation.
In Washington state, “Donors included Ms. Walton, the Bezos foundation, and Bill Gates and Paul Allen, the co-founders of Microsoft. They raised millions of dollars to promote the ballot initiative…”
Also involved, we learned, was Democrats for Education Reform, the Wall Street hedge fund managers organization, and Stand for Children, which stands for equity investors.
Who coordinates these fund-raisers? Who else is involved? How do they manage to present themselves as liberals and supporters of “the civil rights issue of our era” in alliance with far-right groups? And why are they so intent on privatization when the evidence is clear that charters don’t produce better education than public schools?
And how can the Obama administration support a movement tied to the far-right that worked to defeat him?

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