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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:47 PM
Original message
The Gates Foundation: An Established Record of Damage to the School System
Got Dough? Public School Reform in the Age of Venture Philanthropy


..."The sorry tale of the Gates Foundations first major project in education reform has been told often, but its key to understanding how Gates functions. Ill run through it briefly. In 2000 the foundation began pouring money into breaking up large public high schools where test scores and graduation rates were low. The foundation insisted that more individual attention in closer learning communities wouldpresto!boost achievement. The foundation didnt base its decision on scientific studies showing school size mattered; such studies didnt exist. As reported in Bloomberg Businessweek (July 15, 2010), Wharton School statistician Howard Wainer believes Gates probably misread the numbers and simply seized on data showing small schools are overrepresented among the country's highest achievers. Gates spent $2 billion between 2000 and 2008 to set up 2,602 schools in 45 states and the District of Columbia, directly reaching at least 781,000 students, according to a foundation brochure. Michael Klonsky, professor at DePaul University and national director of the Small Schools Workshop, describes the Gates effect this way:
Gates funding was so large and so widespread, it seemed for a time as if every initiative in the small-schools and charter world was being underwritten by the foundation. If you wanted to start a school, hold a meeting, organize a conference, or write an article in an education journal, you first had to consider Gates (Power Philanthropy in The Gates Foundation and the Future of Public Schools, 2010).

In November 2008, Bill and Melinda gathered about one hundred prominent figures in education at their home outside Seattle to announce that the small schools project hadnt produced strong results. They didnt mention that, instead, it had produced many gut-wrenching sagas of school disruption, conflict, students and teachers jumping ship en masse, and plummeting attendance, test scores, and graduation rates. No matter, the power couple had a new plan: performance-based teacher pay, data collection, national standards and tests, and school turnaround (the term of art for firing the staff of a low-performing school and hiring a new one, replacing the school with a charter, or shutting down the school and sending the kids elsewhere).

To support the new initiatives, the Gates Foundation had already invested almost $2.2 million to create The Turnaround Challenge, the authoritative how-to guide on turnaround. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has called it the bible for school restructuring. Hes incorporated it into federal policy, and reformers around the country use it. Mass Insight Education, the consulting company that produced it, claims the document has been downloaded 200,000 times since 2007. Meanwhile, Gates also invested $90 million in one of the largest implementations of the turnaround strategyChicagos Renaissance 2010. Ren10 gave Chicago public schools CEO Arne Duncan a national name and ticket to Washington; he took along the reform strategy. Shortly after he arrived, studies showing weak results for Ren10 began circulating, but the Chicago Tribune still caused a stir on January 17, 2010, with an article entitled Daley School Plan Fails to Make Grade.

..."To justify their campaign, ed reformers repeat, mantra-like, that U.S. students are trailing far behind their peers in other nations, that U.S. public schools are failing. The claims are specious. Two of the three major international teststhe Progress in International Reading Literacy Study and the Trends in International Math and Science Studybreak down student scores according to the poverty rate in each school. The tests are given every five years. The most recent results (2006) showed the following: students in U.S. schools where the poverty rate was less than 10 percent ranked first in reading, first in science, and third in math. When the poverty rate was 10 percent to 25 percent, U.S. students still ranked first in reading and science. But as the poverty rate rose still higher, students ranked lower and lower. Twenty percent of all U.S. schools have poverty rates over 75 percent. The average ranking of American students reflects this. The problem is not public schools; it is poverty. And as dozens of studies have shown, the gap in cognitive, physical, and social development between children in poverty and middle-class children is set by age three."

http://www.dissentmagazine.org/article/?article=3781


Of course if we address the problem of the rich creating massive poverty across this country Gates and his filthy rich friends might have to pay their fair share without the perk of being allowed to socially engineer our children, our country and government to feed their insatiable $needs$. How many millions of our children should we hand these mega rich failures for their next little experiment.
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:32 PM
Response to Original message
1. "richest man in the country who, like a spoiled child carelessly playing with toys, breaks
one after another."

Bill Gates' troubling involvement in school reform

"According to publicity materials put out by the Gates Foundation, it has "improved 2,602 schools, engaged 40 school districts, and reached at least 781,000 students."

...In recent years the Gates initiative has turned districts upside-down, at first establishing as many small schools as possible, creating thousands of new administrator jobs, eating up classroom space, and compelling the neediest kids who were excluded from the new small schools to travel long distances to attend even more overcrowded large schools in worse conditions than before, relegating those schools to failure.

The small schools created in their place, with several schools sharing one building, were forced to fight fiercely over scarce space, losing science labs, art rooms, libraries, and intervention spaces in the process. The same situation is now unfolding in NYC as the rapidly proliferating charter schools are wedged into public school buildings. As a result, the existing public school, with much higher concentrations of English language learners, special needs students, and homeless children, is now in many cases forced to provide instruction and mandated services in hallways and closets.

Such large-scale experiments on children would never be allowed similar fields like public health, where first carefully controlled pilot studies must be performed, with the informed consent of parents, to ensure that the proposed interventions have positive results, and the risk of collateral damage is minimal."

More about Gate's ed-reform failure and it's human casualties here-

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/answer-sheet/teachers/bill-gates-troubling-involveme.html
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:34 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. OK Gates' ideas don't work and they join public education that is a failure. What's the answer? nt
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:47 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Schools aren't the problem, growing poverty is.
That problem stems directly from wealth hoarders such as Gates, Walton, Broad and their ilk. Expecting them to fix the schools is insane. The schools do fine when poverty is significantly lowered. They know that.

If Gates was truly brilliant and morally motivated he would attack the problem not one of the symptoms.
He never will because his reform isn't about giving back.
People at least need to know the truth when someone actually reports it.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:19 PM
Response to Reply #4
8. In my state neither money spent per student nor ethnicity correlate with test scores.
Only free lunches do at about .7
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:31 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. The rest of the country is reflected in these studies.
From the link in my op-

Two of the three major international teststhe Progress in International Reading Literacy Study and the Trends in International Math and Science Studybreak down student scores according to the poverty rate in each school. The tests are given every five years. The most recent results (2006) showed the following: students in U.S. schools where the poverty rate was less than 10 percent ranked first in reading, first in science, and third in math. When the poverty rate was 10 percent to 25 percent, U.S. students still ranked first in reading and science. But as the poverty rate rose still higher, students ranked lower and lower. Twenty percent of all U.S. schools have poverty rates over 75 percent. The average ranking of American students reflects this.

We are talking about parents and children living their lives in poverty and the damage caused as a result not just underfunded schools systems.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:44 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. Thanks but poverty may not be the causal factor. nt
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 09:19 PM
Response to Reply #11
17. Poverty is the causal factor in just about every social ill in this country, since when
are public school students exempt.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 11:03 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. What causes poverty? nt
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 03:10 AM
Response to Reply #20
27. Uneven distribution of wealth/capital heavily favoring a very small percentage of individuals.
Gates being exhibit A.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 07:46 AM
Response to Reply #27
29. Again symptoms. What causes uneven distribution? What about middle linebackers that
average $1,175,788, range $310,000 to $9.4 million? See http://www.ehow.com/about_7415423_average-salary-nfl-middle-linebacker.html

What about middle linebackers who don't have a job and wannabe kids who never made a high school team?

Should we blame K-12 schools for the uneven distribution of middle linebacker wealth?

I had data only for test scores, per student spending, ethnicity, and free lunches.
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 05:59 PM
Response to Reply #29
31. You make no sense.
We have a rich problem, that creates poverty which devastates lives, communities and schools.

The shit always travels down from the top not up from the bottom. The cause is at the top, the results wreak havoc on the bottom.

Trickle down, drown it in a bathtub, authoritarian bootstrap dogma at the top.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 06:11 PM
Response to Reply #31
32. "make no sense"? Please prove to the Internet audience that you KNOW why some students do poorly. nt
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 12:28 AM
Response to Reply #11
21. what, in your opinion, may be?
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TheMadMonk Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 02:13 AM
Response to Reply #8
25. I see you managed not to mention poverty there.
Although, since free school lunches are a pretty fair indicator of underlying poverty, you inadvertently managed to confirm the actual premis advanced and not your mendacious substitution of per capita funding/ethnicity for poverty.

All you've managed to communicate here is that in YOUR mind, non-Anglo ethnicity and poverty are very nearly synonomous.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 07:35 AM
Response to Reply #25
28. I had data on test scores, per student spending, ethnicity, and free lunches. It would be stupid
to mention any thing else but feel free to do that.
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spedtr90 Donating Member (459 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:32 PM
Response to Original message
2. What ever happened to mainstream investigative reporting?
REAL investigative reporting, like this article, in city newspapers and on TV?
Articles like this need to be picked up by papers and expanded into stories.
Guess I gotta buy a network..........

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AC_Mem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:59 PM
Response to Original message
5. Not sure about this
Because my grandchildren, who live with me, go to a school who is the recipient of the B&M Gates grant. It is the best school environment that I personally have ever encountered and offers them an outstanding education . The focus is on environmental science and community service. The school is, simply, outstanding and my grandchildren are thriving and getting smarter every single day.

I understand the argument, however from first hand, personal experience, I can't agree that this is a bad thing. Everything that President Obama wants for the education of our youth, this school is providing.

::shrugs::
Annette

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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:01 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. Lucky them. nt
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:02 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. is it providing cheap untrained teachers who work without basic labor protections?
Edited on Mon Jan-17-11 08:03 PM by Hannah Bell
-shrugs-
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AC_Mem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:32 PM
Response to Reply #7
10. I don't think so
My understanding is that over 1,000 teachers applied to teach at this school. The best of the best were selected. And they do have a union.

I'm a devoted liberal democrat and believe that teachers are underpaid and under appreciated. I think they deserve high wages because they are educating those who will be in charge of our future.

But I have to give the truth as I see it - in this instance, at this school.

Yes, we are lucky and it is also hard work. The parents are expected to be a part of the success of this program because it is a COMMUNITY EFFORT from the classroom up.

Having said all that, our city and county school system is in a huge crisis right now (Memphis/Shelby County) and I don't know how the outcome will affect all of this.

Annette
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:55 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. gee, i wonder why the city & county are in crisis. it couldn't have anything to do with the
financial crisis sponsored by the same class who's trying to sell you on their education vision, could it?

of course it couldn't.
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AC_Mem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 09:03 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. Is there a reason for your sarcasm toward me?
You might want to get your facts straight before coming in for the attack.

I have a right not only to my opinion on this one school that is helping my precious grandchildren, but also to put you on alert and ignore. I live in Tennessee - you think I don't know how bad it is? Get a grip, okay?

bye bye
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 09:12 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. i see no personal remarks whatsoever directed at *you*. get a grip yourself.
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 09:14 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. And someone else's precious grandchildren are being educated in hallways. As a result of Gates
Edited on Mon Jan-17-11 09:14 PM by ipaint
ed reform. Enough so that his small schools experiment was abandoned by non other than B+M leaving many school districts in ruins. The strings on the deal in Memphis was that the union had to go along or no dice. It seems the county is also having a problem with exorbitant salaries that go along with a large increase in the number of administration and supervisor positions created with the 90 million grant.

As I said lucky for your grandkids, for now. Not so lucky for many, many others.

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AC_Mem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 09:23 PM
Response to Reply #16
18. I understand fully
And thank you for being civil. I feel bad for everyone who is a victim, but truth is truth. I guess we are very lucky in this instance and who knows what is going to happen if the school system crumbles on itself.

I live in Tennessee but wanted to move to Orlando to be near my son. That is, until Grayson lost and it was taken over by the GOP. Now I wonder if I'm better off here!!!! ugh! There isn't even a lesser of the two evils!!!

Peace,
Annette
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ipaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. Florida is in for a world of hurt with a teabagger senator and a criminal govenor.
12% unemployment, higher in my county and no light at the end of the tunnel. If you are middle class and comfortable you probably won't notice or can wait it out but for those of us on the bottom it is hell.
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AC_Mem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 11:15 PM
Response to Reply #19
33. Unfortunately the middle class isn't really comfortable any more
Every time I go to the store I am reminded of this.

$100.00 is the new $25.00 - I can't afford to have my already stretched standard of living reduced. As much as I want to be near my son, I'm going to give this a little more time...if I see the GOP do what I believe they are going to do (disaster!), I'll feel better about people reacting to it by straightening out the vote next go round.

There I go, hoping again!

:)

p.s. I have just got to say, it takes ALLOT to get to 1000 posts!!!! :) but i'm trying...
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Scruffy1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:56 PM
Response to Original message
13. K&R
I downloaded the whole article for reading at work tonight. I trust this private school educated rich boy quite a bit less than the distance I could throw him.
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Starry Messenger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 12:30 AM
Response to Original message
22. k&r
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Tatiana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 12:39 AM
Response to Original message
23. It kills me how a great number of education "reformers" have never gone to public school themselves.
They don't have any idea of the environmental, social, and societal factors that affect educating a student.

Bill Gates, an extremely wealthy college dropout, actually suggests that schools can be reformed by increasing class size, especially at the secondary level. This person has no background, no experience, no professional training in regards to public education. Why in the hell should anyone listen to him?

Oh yeah, cause he's one of the richest men in the world. And apparently, some schools and school districts are willing to submit themselves to his crazy, unproven or debunked ideas to get their hands on that B&MG Foundation $$$$$. It's sad.

Maybe Gates sincerely wants to improve schools. His arrogance and attack on teachers' unions lead me to believe otherwise.
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RandomThoughts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 12:49 AM
Response to Reply #23
24. Could be either way.
Edited on Tue Jan-18-11 12:50 AM by RandomThoughts
I do know there are groups that want the working class not educated. If you have an unjust society then education is a problem.

The attack on unions is a consistent move by those that want empire, even if they feel it is for the best, that is a step or two missing in the thought by an error of superiority.

There are groups that think the 'best people' should have children and be educated to succeed to have children and be in positions to pass on knowledge.

That is the creation of two societies in HG Wells the time machine.


On a side note, both online dating sites that have tv commercials have a thread of eugenics in them. Although I agree helping people find other people they can enjoy time with is a good thing, the restrictions and selectivity of that process is a different thought for promoting people of same types by some persons standards having families.

One commercial had the mountain top, and the 'stretch' from big brain box doctrine, and even used a concept about 'real sponsor' using a term used in some groups.

The other spoke of not finding people in 'random bars'

I figure they are part of the intelligence that want some people to go away, and what they think of as best to propagate, thinking they can control direction of society. However that would be the worst, those that do those things, picking who should have families.


On a side note, Bill was funding inoculations for childhood diseases in many countries, if the intent of those actions were what they were reported to be, that shows a lack of thought on eugenics. Could have been for some other reason.

However I know he has not corrected the beer and travel money due to me, and he has the capability to do that, so there is either a filter to blame, that has to be removed, or he chooses not to correct that issue.
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 02:19 AM
Response to Original message
26. k&r
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Reader Rabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 07:47 AM
Response to Original message
30. K&R
I wish the mainstream media would report this kind of information. Sadly, they are either lazy, complicit, or both.
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