Friday, February 26, 2010

California Charter Schools Association and Market Share - Setting the Table for Vouchers

"Soviet style elections" — Ben Austin in response to parents and communities choosing community school plans over corporate charters.

California Charter Schools Association Charlatans are a vehicle for vouchersYou'd think that the overarching goal of the California Charter Schools Association would be to contribute to the social fabric by providing a quality education to all the students its member schools serve, but instead it's all about market share.

To wit:

"Ultimately the Association gauges its success by tracking the growth in the number of children attending high-quality charter schools in California." — Rick Piercy (Board Chair CCSA 2009) [1]

This imperative of increasing market share — an imperative shared by all the billionaire backers [2] of charters, pressing through their proxies like Ben Austin — is ultimately aimed at union busting and bankrupting public school systems. AEI's Andy Smarick, Ben Austin and Marco Petruzzi's reactionary ideological muse, writes the following in a far right wing journal sponsored by the Hoover Institution and Fordham Institute.

"As chartering increases its market share in a city, the district will come under growing financial pressure. The district, despite educating fewer and fewer students, will still require a large administrative staff to process payroll and benefits, administer federal programs, and oversee special education. With a lopsided adult-to-student ratio, the district's per-pupil costs will skyrocket." [3]

This is of course, the exact methodology that Austin and his fellow CCSA operatives follow in Los Angeles — a right wing roadmap, so to speak. While they've been helped greatly by the policies of the current administration, particularly by Arne "Katrina Schadenfreude" Duncan, these machinations have been in place for many, many years. After charter schools have displaced and bankrupted public schools entirely, the employing class's long time dream of vouchers is in reach.

This dovetails with what celebrated educator and author Jonathan Kozol states is the real purpose behind the so called charter "movement:"

'In the long run, charter schools are being strategically used to pave the way for vouchers. The voucher advocates, who are very powerful and funded by right-wing foundations and families, recognize that the word voucher has been successfully discredited by enlightened Americans who believe in the public sector. So they've resorted to two strategies. First, they no longer use the word "vouchers." They've adopted the seemingly benign phrase "school choice," but they are still voucher advocates.' — Jonathan Kozol [4]

So too, says the Walton Family watchdog site "" which discusses under the subheading The Walton's' Agenda: Vouchers and Charter Schools.

"Since the late 1990's, the Walton's have donated millions of dollars to various causes across the country "including the start-up funding that allowed the national private-school voucher movement to get off the ground more than a decade ago." [5]

Charged with growing corporate CMO charter market share, Ben Austin's Green Dot Public [sic] Schools subsidiary LAPU/Parent Revolution has allegedly just received a large grant from the voucher oriented Walton Foundation. For more examples of millions of ideologically charged dollars flowing into Green Dot corporation and LAPU/PR, see Sharon Higgens' latest expose on the nefarious relations between the charter-voucher camp and their billionaire bankrollers 'The "Parent Trigger" and its connections to the phoney LA Parents Union, Green Dot, Steve Barr, and Eli Broad' [6]


More CCSA market share madness: "Since [Steve Poizner's] involvement in the charter school movement [sic] began, the number of charter schools in California has doubled." ("
[2] Eli Broad, William Gates II, The Walton Family, Reed Hastings, Donald Fisher, Michael Milkin, et al.
Notice too, the paragraph reveals the deliberate charter-voucher intention of not educating special education children. While the CCSA and charter-voucher proponents try to skirt this issue, their own ideological documents shamelessly contain their malevolent tenets and firm commitment NOT to educate every child.

Special thanks to Sarah Knopp and Dr. Danny Weil for pointing me in the market share direction.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Respect the community votes! No more charters in LAUSD!

Here's an awesome video by Social Justice Educator and Activist Jose Lara of Los Angeles teachers holding a candle light vigil as they wait in line to get a number for the February 23, 2010 LAUSD school board meeting.

[Click if you can't view the video]

Privatization specialists Ben Austin (City Ethics Case # 2010-36), Shirley Ford, Gabe Rose and the other corporate charter-voucher cheerleaders clamored for a parent vote. Now they're vehemently trying to undermine and subvert those votes!

While Cortines is advocating giving away several public schools to private corporations despite overwhelming community support for the local school plans — including my neighborhood school Gratts — the "market share" mindset of the CCSA and the corporate CMO charter-voucher industry has them calling for even more schools! So much for school choice, huh?

I swung past Beaudry and took some photos this morning, but none of them were worth posting. I did see several Green Dot Public [sic] School employees, including Shirley Ford standing on the sidewalk by the news-vans.

More on this soon!

Relevant twitter updates

@JoseDelBarrio LA Teachers begin the day with morning Candle light vigil saying to school takeovers #UTLA #lausd

@avalonsensei Charters could have redeemed themselves by bidding for the neediest schools, but they didn't. So we will fight. #edreform #lausd @itsyolie

@rdsathene Charters, Inc. @gaberose + @parentrev at #LAUSD to convince @itsyolie led Board to ignore parent choice and community votes #edreform #UTLA

@rdsathene Austin, Ford, Rose & @parentrev clamored for parent vote. Now they're vehemently trying to undermine & subvert those votes. #edreform #LAUSD

@rdsathene Did right wing corporate charter charlatan Ben Austin just quote Malcom X. Can he be serious? #edrefom #UTLA #LAUSD

@rdsathene Charter charlatan Ben Austin calls community & parent votes in PSC advisory "Soviet Style Elections" #edrefom #LAUSD

@rdsathene Jose Lara absolutely rocked the #LAUSD board! "Self Determination!" "Don't Balkanize our school district!"#edrefom @JoseDelBarrio #UTLA

Not twitter, but Martin Terrones: "Charter Schools [at LAUSD] promote segregation" -- Margarite Lamotte, LAUSD Board Member and sole voice of reason in a sea of closeted biggots and opportunists.


A.R.E. SCHOLARSHIP: Last week to submit Applications!

"A deepened consciousness of their situation leads people to apprehend that situation as an historical reality susceptible to transformation." — Paulo Freire

privatization = segregation, immigrant rights = workers rightsEducation is a Basic Human Right!

The Association of Raza Educators, A.R.E., believes that education is a human right and that all people, regardless of citizenship status, should have the right to an education. As educators, we often see some of the most deserving students denied that right because they are ineligible for financial aid.

Through its fiscal sponsor, the Raza Education Fund, the Association of Raza Educators will provide undocumented students with an opportunity to realize their dreams of attending college. Each year A.R.E will award undocumented graduating seniors and continuing college students with a scholarship. The number of scholarships awarded each year will be determined by the amount raised and/or donated to the Raza Education Fund.

Scholarship recipients are selected based on their commitment to fighting for social justice. Students are required to turn in an application, and demonstrate how they are actively involved in their community. Scholarship recipients are expected to further the goals of A.R.E.

Deadline: March 1, 2010

ARE Annual Scholarship Information and Applications

Information on the Rights of Undocumented Students

For more information please visit their website at


Sunday, February 21, 2010

Racist Anti-Immigrant Speech by California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) and EdVoice Co-Founder Steve Poizner

Stand against anti-immigrant racism from California Charter Schools Association (CCSA)'s Steve PoiznerCalifornia Charter Schools Association Co-Founder and long time board member Steve Poizner is running for Governor. He spoke at the reactionary right wing Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on Friday, February 19, 2010.

In a speech in which he proposes unconscionable further tax cuts for the über-wealthy and corporations in the midst of a recession, rails against public unions and brags about his plan to neuter labor once and for all, the most vile and venomous portion of Steve Poizner's speech at CPAC was reserved for undocumented peoples. In fact, his hateful rhetoric sounded exactly like speeches by Jim Gilchrist, founder of the vicious anti-immigrant group "The Minutemen." Here's the CCSA founder Steve Poizner tipping his hand (more appropriately his hood), at the event headlined by Glen Beck:

"And last, but not least — sometimes it's unpopular to talk about it on the campaign trail — I don't care. I'm going to be a truth teller. Last, but not least, we have to stop illegal immigration once and for all!

[ lengthy rabid applause from racist crowd ]

We're going to do two things; and I know there's some people who think it's just a Federal matter, but it's not. The Governor can do a lot about it. First thing I'm going to do is turn the magnets off. There's a lot of state programs that attract people to California illegally, and I'm going to turn those magnets off. And the second thing I'm going to do is I'm going to secure the border. If I have to send the National Guard to the border, that's what I'm gonna do." — Steve Poizner, Co-Founder California Charter School Association (CCSA) (

Lest the CCSA try to deny Poizner's founding, influence, and leading position with the California Charter School Association, he was their co-founder and a board member as late as 2008:

From CCSA Co-Founder Steve Poizner's biography on his campaign site:

"Steve demonstrated his passion for local control of schools by co-founding EdVoice and the California Charter Schools Association - the state's leading charter school organization. Since his involvement in the charter school movement began, the number of charter schools in California has doubled." (

CCSA Co-Founder Steve Poizner on Wikipedia (

"In 2003, Poizner co-founded the California Charter Schools Association.[6]"

A CCSA Press Release from 2008 listing Steve Poizner as a Board Member

A CCSA Press Release from 2005 listing Steve Poizner as a Board Member

I wonder what Poizner's close friends and fellow charter charlatans Jed Wallace, Steve Barr, Marco Petruzzi, Judy Burton, Ben Austin, and all the other CCSA cheerleaders will have to say about this outrageous speech.

In fact, I wonder if any of the corporate friendly opportunists including: Yolie Flores-Aguilar of LAUSD, Monica Garcia of LAUSD, Maria Casillas of Families in Schools, Jarad Sanchez of Alliance for a Better Community, Veronica Melvin of Alliance for a Better Community, Gabe Rose of Green Dot Public [sic] Schools/LAPU/Parent Revolution, or Shirley Ford of Green Dot Public [sic] Schools/LAPU/Parent Revolution will hold a press conference to speak to this incredibly racist anti-immigrant speech by their close CCSA ally.

Updates: Mike Klonsky finds video footage of the vile racist and CCSA co-founder making his infamous speech: @mikeklonsky Poizner running for Gov. in Calif. gives racist anti-immigrant rant at CPAC. Founded Calif. Charter School Assoc.

The UCLA Civil Rights Project and North Carolina studies have already shown corporate charter schools herald the return of Jim Crow. However, CCSA co-founder Steve Poizner may have shown the charter-voucher supporters' true face a little earlier than their right wing billionaire backers might have liked. Anyone concerned with fighting racism and forwarding civil rights needs to join the struggle against the charter school industry.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Two amazing reports on malfeasance in Minnesota charter schools

"75% [of charter schools] had a least one irregularity noted in their financial audit." &mdash Minnesota 2020 (2008 Report)

Defend Public Schools from Corporate Charter Charlatans Like Jed WallaceThese are amazing reports of financial mismanagement and other charter malfeasance from Minnesota, the birthplace of charter "schools."

Checking in on Charter Schools: A Review of 2008 Financial Management Practices

Checking in on Charter Schools - An Examination of Charter School Finances

It should go without saying that any organization with unelected, corporate, and unaccountable boards with access to public funds is a scandal waiting to happen. These reports' findings on charters with financial irregularities are quite telling, and support the contentions of public school advocates that charters are far less accountable than public schools. With the current administration using the Wall Street imposed financial crises to force school privatization (read charters) on the rest of us, we can expect more and more financial malfeasance, as corporate types and their 501c3 counterparts look to loot more from public coffers.

At least we know that it isn't just Barr, Wallace, Petruzzi, Burton, Ressler, and Austin with fast-and-loose accounting.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Advocating Public Education Roundup 10W07

Support Parents and UTLA against LAUSD and Green Dot's corporate charter cash cowsIn LA teachers take on the charters Sarah Knopp and Rebecca Sun, members of United Teachers Los Angeles, report on the fight to stop the privatization of LA's public schools. Andy Libson, a science teacher at Mission High School, and member of United Educators of San Francisco and the Educators for a Democratic Union reform caucus, has some questions for Superintendent Carlos Garcia in Join us in resisting the cuts.

The latest issue of Regeneración features extensive coverage on "The Attacks on Public Education." "Regeneración is a publication of the Association of Raza Educators Press. Its Editorial Board consists of A.R.E. members. The views expressed by the authors do not necessarily represent the views of the Association of Raza Educators. Regeneración is published quarterly, three times per year."

Howard Blume explores the possibility of a parcel tax to help with the budget crunch in L.A. Unified to seek $100 parcel tax hike. In it Wall Street huckster cum public dole recipient CMO CEO Marco Petruzzi has the audacity to discuss "seniority and tenure." It's funny to hear the same people who defend bonuses for Goldman Sachs discuss so called "merit pay" schemes for real working class people like teachers. Given the incredibly low API's of most of his corporate Green Dot schools, and their inability to serve all SWD students, maybe the very wealthy Petruzzi should consider revamping a system rewarding longevity over merit starting with his own massive six digit salary.

Of course, Petruzzi's unqualified comments pale in comparison to everyone's favorite corporate welfare CCSA/CMO leech — Jed Wallace. Here's the comments I typed in response to his extreme right wing nonsense:

Given the astronomical sums of money the CCSA/CMO parasites like Jed Wallace are sucking out of the public trough, it's somewhat surprising that he'd even care to comment on this story. Make not mistake though. When the insatiably greedy Jed Wallace says the CCSA and his band of well heeled Corporate CMO CEOs would "oppose a tax with no benefit for them," he's telling the truth. In the elitist world of Jed Wallace and the charter plutocrats, they believe every tax dollar we pay should go directly into their pockets. Petruzzi, Wallace, Barr, Burton, and all the barons of the lucrative charter charade are laughing at us all the way to the bank!

Are Charter Schools Civil Rights Failures? (Yes! -rds) "A recent study by the Civil Rights Project at the University of California-Los Angeles says that charter schools are a civil rights failure, citing increasingly segregated enrollment as one of many issues. On the other hand, many experts say that charter schools are a success for students and the community at large. The study titled "Choice without Equity: Charter School Segregation and the Need for Civil Rights Standards." Host Michel Martin discusses the study’s findings with Gary Orfield, co-director of the Civil Rights Project who oversaw the research."

More than half of California's school districts have the good sense to avoid caving in to Arne "Katrina Schadenfreude" Ducan's RttT neoliberal privatization RttT blackmail scheme? Bravo I say.

Kenneth Libby points out Imagine Schools completes sale of 7 charters for $61 million: "Just like traditional public schools, right?"

How do you spell conflict of interest? I spell it Scholastic Inc. The suppliers of pre-packaged "banking pedagogy," and favorites of Capitalism lovin' Corporate CMO Charters like Green Dot Public [sic] Schools [1] counts none other than Supt. Cortines on their payroll. Kudos to the Los Angeles Times for actually standing up to this kind of mendacity and malfeasance in Cortines' Scholastic entanglement, it's about time! Now if they would just take on Matt Hill and the other monsters of privatization.

[1] Try reading Scholastic Inc.'s homage to Steve Barr and his corporate empire someday. Be sure to have a receptacle for vomit at the ready.


Monday, February 15, 2010

Response to wild accusations by Yolie Flores Aguilar, Inc.

"[S]ome charters are known to discourage less academically inclined students from enrolling." — Los Angeles Times

Defend Public Schools from Corporate Charter Charlatans Like Yolie Flores Aguilar, Inc.Don't know if anyone caught the evil empress of privatization's comments in the Los Angeles Times that the voting process she inflicted on our communities was "disgusting," but that was the first round of Yolie Flores Aguilar, Inc.'s vicious invective against those who chose public schools over her corporate CMO charter allies.

Ralph Nader once described George W. Bush as "a corporation in the disguise of a human being." The same can be said of LAUSD VP Yolie Flores Aguilar, except for the disguise part. Her assault on our communities on behalf of her billionaire bankrollers and corporate CMO charter companions is probably the most remarkable part of the neoliberal assault on public education. In her amateurish op-ed in the Los Angeles Daily News entitled "Challenge to status quo good for LAUSD students" [1] Flores Aguilar displays her amazing propensity for arrogance and dishonesty that have become her trademarks. Here's the comments I made in response to her drivel.

It's despicable that an elected official can be as obtuse towards their constituents as VP Yolie Flores Aguilar, Inc. has been.

None of the public school supporters have ever said:

"that their special needs children or English learners will not be served"

What we have said is that they will be under-served. Let's take Ms. Flores Aguilar's country club buddies and fellow elitists from Green Dot Corporation as a key example. Green Dot's exclusionary schools have an average of 7.4% Special Education students compared to 11.3% for District schools. The frightening part is that their corporate CMO is actually far better in terms of their Special Ed and SWD percentages than most of the other corporate CMOs bidding to take over and privatize public institutions.

I welcome all readers to familiarize themselves with the Modified Consent Decree exposing corporate CMO charter-voucher school discrimination and exclusivity. Very telling is the statement that children with disabilities are "significantly underrepresented" at CMO run charter schools. The executive summary of the report (, and the data tables from the report ( Charter school operators are concerned special education programs for children cut into the massive salaries for their executives. Until these corporate run schools are obligated legally, ethically, and morally to educate every child they shouldn't get a penny of our taxes or the buildings we paid for! As social justice activists, public school advocates, and progressives, we implore charter schools and other outsiders to stop putting EXECUTIVES and CEOs before children!

Of course, Ms. Flores Aguilar, Inc. is intimately familiar with these documents and all the other statistical data proving how CMO corporate charters do everything in their power to avoid educating every child. She's also aware of how the CCSA and the individual charters have fought every attempt to change their discriminatory practices -- to the point that they're trying to get reactionary State Senator Romero to change the law and make it legal for them to discriminate. The fact that VP Yolie Flores Aguilar knows all this, but then goes on to say anyone discussing it is dealing in "fear tactics" speaks volumes to her character.

I think we'd be challenged to find anyone more disingenuous, dishonest, and beholden to corporate interests than LAUSD Vice President Yolie Flores Aguilar. Her disrespect towards parents, students, teachers, and taxpayers goes beyond the pale.

One last thing. Telling the truth is not a fear tactic. We in the social justice community understand Ms. Flores Aguilar is frustrated that many parents and community members have seen through her attempt to increase CMO market share, and in turn the massive salaries of the insatiably greedy CMO executives. We understand that she doesn't want people reading documentation of the major shortcomings of the various CMO corporate charter schools. In the end however, we will speak truth to power. Her "shock doctrine" tactics are unconscionable, and her high handed attacks on our communities on behalf of her corporate handlers will not be forgotten.



Austinwatch - Green Dot Ben Austin Watch 10W07

"You know, I'm amused. I can't tell you how many foreign leaders who are heads of center-right governments say to me, I don't understand why people would call you socialist, in my country, you'd be considered a conservative." -- President Barack H. Obama (CNN's State of the Union 2009-09-20)

Report Green Dot's Ben Austin on the City Ethics Commission Complaint Form OnlineDespite all of Ben Austin's constant lies and accusations that hard working public school teachers are child molesters, [1][2] are a "special interest," [3] and aren't accountable to parents and communities, [4] those same parents and communities voted overwhelmingly for school plans drawn up by teachers and parents.

As soon as the corporate CMO cavalcade realized they weren't able to buy off the population despite busing in outsiders into neighborhoods to vote for corporate charters, the CMO/CCSA spokesworms started with their usual campaign of fear and lies. The same slime that smear teachers began complaining they weren't able to steal the community votes: "Educated Guess: Cheating has made PSC voting process has been turned into 'farce,' Cortines should 'shred the ballots'" [5]. Generalisimo Pinoche would have been proud of a statement like that.

Remember Austin claims to speak for all the parents in Los Angeles, despite the fact that he has no school age children himself, and despite the fact that his little astro-turf Green Dot spin-off has no significant grass roots base. Let's be generous to the highly paid LAPU/PR employees and say that they have 4,000 parent members. In a city of 9,862,049, they represent less than half of a one hundredth percent of the population (0.04%), an infinitesimally small figure, and certainly not a groundswell of parents even by Austin's standards of hyperbole and Ayn Rand fantasies. What's more, with no board for parents to drive LAPU/PR policy, little to no parent fundraising, and the fact that Green Dot counts parent participation in their LAPU/PR front group as part of their "community service" requirement, claims that LAPU/PR is anything but a vehicle for the Billionaire/DLC/DFER agenda are specious at best.

This wouldn't first time Austin has lied or made outrageously false accusations.

Recall in his recent LA Times Op-Ed [6], where Austin was immune to the usual Op-Ed fact checking. He blatantly lies when he says "50% of kids in L.A. public schools aren't graduating." The Los Angeles Times has recently printed the truth about this outrageously erroneous statistic.

Another example of Austin's inability to tell the truth is when he attacked me over my groundbreaking expose of LAPU/PR's nefarious "organizing" methods on the affluent side of Los Angeles. [7] Unable to refute any of the factual information in the piece, Austin used his considerable rhetorical skills to draw attention away from the truth by trying, unsuccessfully, to discredit me. Let's look at some of the things he accuses me of:

...opponents of reform who tend to communicate in the language of personal invective and childlike imaginations...

opponents of reform have said some surrealistic, bizarre and mean things

Really Mr. Austin? I have a "childlike imagination," and have written "surrealistic, bizarre" things about your Walton, Broad, Gates Foundation funded astro-turf group? I suppose I'd understand your sentiments if I was the only one who ever made the accusation...

Vindication! Unexpected voices from Emerson.

In November, the very conservative Jewish Journal featured a cover story entitled Healing the World, One School at a Time. In this excellent piece, the author speaks to precisely the same issues I discuss in my piece Code Words and Green Dot's Pandering to Westside Racism. Here are some quotes:

"There are people who think, 'The school is too black, the school is too Mexican,' and all of a sudden you see a lot of ugly things about people," Ritter Simon said. "Prejudice still exists. For a lot of people, that's a very uncomfortable zone."

Of Emerson, Bollinger said, "We heard horrible things -- that there were gangs, there was bullying, that it wasn't a safe place and the scores were so bad you couldn't get a good education.

The issue raises tough questions about race and class that many find difficult to face, parents said.

Puts things in perspective, doesn't it? Bear in mind this is the very right leaning that just printed a fact free fluff piece on how great Ben Austin is, and how he single handedly created LAPU/PR (obviously the journalist never read the infamous "Annenberg Document." which unequivocally proves LAPU's existence years before Mr. Austin jumped on that cash cow).

While I found Austin's comments about me laughable, it's still good to know that I was dead on in my article. Suddenly the surreal and bizarre are mainstream, and my alleged childlike imagination was actually the factual writings of a community activist unafraid to speak truth to the power of wealthy elite like Austin. While I could have easily written a polemic that went through point by point discrediting Austin's attack on me, I feel the Healing the World, One School at a Time piece proves my point sufficiently and vindicates me entirely. If Austin and his ilk want to avoid accusations of unsavory organizing tactics in the future, maybe they should stop their unsavory organizing tactics.

With Austin, it's always about the money. I'm not the only one following the money when it comes to Mr. Austin. Check out the massive figure quoted by Kenneth Libby at the end of this article: Can Ben Austin Speak for Parent Revolution without Speaking for Green Dot?.

Right Wingers Funded Austin's Campaign?

Right Winger Ben Austin's Campaign Contributors for his LAUSD Run, courtesy of the Los Angeles City Ethics Commission. This is a list of ideologically charged individuals who contributed to Green Dot's head school privatization and hostile take over expert's aborted LAUSD school board run for District 4. Some will argue that things would be worse had he succeeded in getting elected. Given the reactionary performance of Yolie Flores Aguilar, Inc., it's hard to say that's the case. Maybe we can thank all these Gen. Pinoche/Ben Austin fans by having a "thank a fascist day," where we contact these right wingers on the list and thank them for contributing towards the destruction of public education. Bear in mind, these campaign contributions were supposedly returned to the plutocrats that made them. I've included a copy of the document below the notes here for people who don't want to follow the link.

[1] LAPU's Ben Austin Creating Hysteria Again
[2] Is Green Dot's Ben Austin projecting when he discusses pedophiles?
[3] The irony of a guy, who works for billionaires, and himself grosses more than five times that average pay of the hard working women and men who teach in our communities to call teachers a "special interest" isn't lost on astute readers. Here's one of the many times the pathological liar from Franklin Canyon accused our working class brothers and sisters of being "special interests"
[4] Because KIPP and Green Dot are so accountable? KIPP hucksters managed to steal a fat six figure sum, while Barr pilfered a cool $51K. Remember, the so called "charter movement" is funded and spearheaded by right wing billionaires and supported by a cheerleading squad of hedge fund managers like white supremacist Whitney "we need a lot more well-off, well-educated white folks" Tilson, so its no wonder these folks have Goldman Sachs style morals that have an upside down notion of accountability. For examples of Austin and Rose discussing accountability, just scan their astro-turf blog amid all the charter school endorsements where they keep saying the "teacher" (really teacher parent) plans have no provisions for accountability. While laughable and false on its face, reactionary tools like Rick Salen, Bill Grundfest, and Jaemin Yi seem to buy into this false line of reasoning.
[7] Code Words and Green Dot's Pandering to Westside Racism
[8] So I Guess We Touched a Nerve

Right Winger Ben Austin's Campaign Contributors for his LAUSD Run


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Political Success is Civil Rights Failure (Charter Schools Study)

Click if you can't view the video.

Gary Orfield, co-director of the Civil Rights Project at UCLA (Feb 11 2010) talks about new Study, titled "Charter Schools' Political Success is a Civil Rights Failure"

INTERVIEW ON DEMOCRACY NOW by Amy Goodman & Juan Gonzalez:


Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Community School Choice: Teacher and Parent Plans. NO to greedy corporate CMO charters!

Everyone should visit UTLA's School Choice Parent/Teacher Advisory Voting Guide (Feb. 2nd & 6th)

"[S]ome charters are known to discourage less academically inclined students from enrolling." — Los Angeles Times

Vote for teacher parent plansThe corporate CMO charters and their billionaire backers have spent millions of dollars trying to degrade our communities and teachers. While the entire process inflicted on us by Yolie Flores Aguilar, Inc. is anti-democratic and biased towards those with the most financial backing, the next few days will allow communities a modicum of input. The facts are, corporate CMO charters, and charters in general, under-serve SWD, Special Needs and Special Education children, and English Language Learners. These are not fear tactics, as the wealthy charter backers keep claiming — they are well documented facts. Since they can't refute these facts, they just keep carrying on and on about unions are trying to scare people. The unions aren't trying to scare anyone, except the charter operators who are scared when the truth shines on their discriminatory practices.

I'm not in a union, and am not paid by a union, but unlike those pushing privatization, I read. I read things like the recent documents from the Modified Consent Decree exposing corporate CMO charter-voucher school discrimination and exclusivity. Very telling is the statement that children with disabilities are "significantly underrepresented" at CMO run charter schools. The executive summary of the report, and the data tables from the report. Charter school operators are concerned special education programs for children cut into the massive salaries for their executives. Until these corporate run schools are obligated legally, ethically, and morally to educate every child they shouldn't get a penny of our taxes or the buildings we paid for! As social justice activists, public school advocates, and progressives, we implore charter schools and other outsiders to stop putting EXECUTIVES and CEOs before children!

Before voting on any plans, look at the percentage of Special Ed, SWD, and ELL students Camino Nuevo, Celerity, Alliance, Green Dot, and other charter schools serve in comparison to Public Schools. The difference is staggering! These organizations should be ashamed of themselves, especially Green Dot, which gets millions upon million in extra funding from billionaires and millionaires like Broad, Gates, the Waltons, Fisher, and Hastings, but despite all that extra funding that public schools will never get, Green Dot's exclusionary schools have an average of 7.4% Special Education students compared to 11.3% for District schools! Shame on you Green Dot. You want to claim the mantle of how education should look? Educate every child! It's that simple.

Those are facts, not scare tactics. I defy any CMO corporate charter supporter to refute them with documented evidence to the contrary! These outsiders have no ties to our communities!

Everyone should visit UTLA's School Choice Parent/Teacher Advisory Voting Guide (Feb. 2nd & 6th) To learn the details on the process and which teacher/parent plans should they should vote for. Remember the teacher/parent plans include educating every child! As a community member in proximity of Gratts ES, I'll be voting for the community plan written by teachers and parents instead of outsiders backed by big money.