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DeVos Admits Latest Nationwide Education Scores Are So Bad They’re ‘Devastating’ – Calls for More of What She’s Been Doing

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Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has just admitted that under her leadership nationwide education test scores have dropped so far they are “devastating.” Her plan: more of what she’s been doing for nearly three years.

DeVos was one of Trump’s first cabinet secretaries confirmed by the Senate. She has been Secretary of Education since February 7, 2017.

“Fourth- and eighth-grade average scores on the ‘Nation’s Report Card,‘ released today, declined since the 2017 assessment, except for an increase in mathematics for fourth graders,” Politico reports, in an article titled, “Test scores slump in ‘Nation’s Report Card.’

How bad is it?

“Two out of three of our nation’s children aren’t proficient readers,” DeVos admits. “In fact, fourth grade reading declined in 17 states and eighth grade reading declined in 31. The gap between the highest and lowest performing students is widening, despite $1 trillion in Federal spending over 40 years designated specifically to help close it.”

That 40-year grasp is illogical. There are few teachers who have been teaching for 40 years.

“This must be America’s wake-up call,” the Secretary continues. “We cannot abide these poor results any longer. We can neither excuse them away nor simply throw more money at the problem.”

DeVos’ plan is to privatize as much of the education system and infrastructure as possible. Her “solution” to “devastating” education test scores is more vouchers, more charter schools, more federal, state, and local taxes being shoveled into the hands of her friends who run those programs.

She calls it “education freedom,” and claims it is “the only way to bring about the change our country desperately needs.”

But even Secretary DeVos admits her plan is not working.

So do experts.

“On the whole,” The Washington Post reported earlier this year, “charters have failed to live up to their promises.”

In fact, charter schools have been proven to perform no better overall than public schools.

“Rigorous research, from groups like Mathematica Policy Research and Stanford University, has found that average charter performance is roughly equivalent to that of traditional public schools,” The Post continues. “A recent study in Ohio, for instance, concluded that some of the state’s charters perform worse than the state’s public schools, some perform better, and roughly half do not significantly differ.”

And every child who is placed in a charter school means a loss of funding for public schools.

Why does DeVos insist on pushing her damaging agenda?

 

 

 

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COMMENTARY

Newsmax Blames ‘Angry CRT Activists’ for Outrage Over District Official Telling Teachers to Offer ‘Opposing’ Holocaust Views

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Americans should not be outraged that a curriculum director of a Texas school district instructed teachers to offer “opposing” views if they have books in the classroom on the Holocaust, suggests Newsmax, the right wing outlet founded by longtime Trump friend Christopher Ruddy.

A Newsmax article published Friday blames “Angry CRT Activists” for what appears to be massive nationwide outrage, saying they are claiming a Texas school is pushing “Holocaust Denial.” The article does not actually mention any CRT “activists.”

It does, however, quote U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, saying he “pounced in a tweet Thursday night.”

This is the Connecticut Democratic Senator’s tweet:

Newsmax does note that the “narrative of pushing books denying the Holocaust was started by Gina Peddy, the Carroll school district’s executive director of curriculum and instruction, who was recorded on audio published by NBC News,” which is part of Senator Murphy’s tweet (above).

The Newsmax piece also mentions this tweet from U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez:

 

Image of Auschwitz by Elsa Gortais via Flickr and a CC license

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COMMENTARY

Tucker Carlson Unleashes Ugly Homophobic Attack on Pete Buttigieg – and Every Parent Taking Paternity Leave

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New dads in Japan can take 35 weeks off with full pay for paternity leave. Spain’s news dads? 12 weeks full pay. Sweden: 11 weeks. Iceland’s new fathers get nine weeks of full paid time off. Canadian new dads get between five and eight weeks. In the U.S., no federal law requires paid paternity leave, although the Family and Medical Leave Act allows unpaid time off.

Unlike 86 percent of Americans who support paid paternity leave, Fox News personality and fascism and white supremacism promoter Tucker Carlson opposes it, apparently, and made that crystal clear in the form of a homophobic attack against U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg Thursday night.

That attack was so broad and so ugly it extends to every man who takes paternity leave, which is unfortunate given that studies show men who take paternity leave are less likely to get divorced, among other long-term benefits.

“Pete Buttigieg has been on leave from his job since August after adopting a child. Paternity leave, they call it, trying to figure out how to breastfeed – no word on how that went,” Carlson said, mocking new dads, fathers in general, men who take paternity leave, and gay fathers.

 

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COMMENTARY

Stephen Miller’s Legal Org Concocts Conspiracy Theory to Demand Inspector General Investigate Merrick Garland Memo

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Former Trump senior advisor Stephen Miller‘s legal group is demanding the U.S. Department of Justice Inspector General launch an investigation into Attorney General Merrick Garland‘s memo that directs the FBI to discuss threats against school board officials.

The Garland memo is exceptionally weak, stating: “I am directing the Federal Bureau of Investigation, working with each United States Attorney, to convene meetings with federal state, local, Tribal, and territorial leaders” to “facilitate the discussion of strategies for addressing threats.”

Nothing more.

After months of coaching and training of “grassroots” activists by right wing groups, including parents across the country, the nation has witnessed countless threats against school board officials and education professionals by parents whose anger is falsely ginned up by Fox news and other right wing media claims over critical race theory, masks, and vaccines.

Miller sees it differently, claiming his group is “demanding an investigation into AG Garland’s memo unleashing federal law enforcement against parents fighting racism/CRT. Letter includes shocking info on origins of the memo.”

Look at that language: “unleashing,” “parents fighting racism,” “shocking info” – all designed to create outrage.

(Also, parents who oppose CRT are not “fighting racism.”)

Meanwhile, in addition to threats, school board officials have been subjected to verbal and even physical abuse – including death threats.

As NCRM has previously reported, school board members and educators in at least nine states this year have been targeted with threats, death threats, and often racist death threats, including in Virginia, Arizona, Connecticut, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Vermont, according to local news reports.

According to Miller, who was one of the architects of Donald Trump’s child separation policy, parents engaging in these threats should not be subjected to legal investigation, but protection.

Miller’s Senior Counselor Reed Rubinstein claims that “the nationwide protests by parents against public school policies and practices—regarding Critical Race Theory indoctrination; anti- religious and anti-family gender ideology; and/or forced online education and mask mandates—are entitled to the most robust federal constitutional protection.”

Rubinstein claims that “the National Education Association, the American Federation of Teachers, and others, have combined to oppress, threaten, and intimidate parents to chill and prevent them from exercising the rights or privileges secured by the Constitution,” offering no reason why they would do this, especially given they have not done it before.

He also claims, again, offering no proof, that in “early September, Biden Administration stakeholders held discussions regarding avenues for potential federal action against parents with a key Biden Domestic Policy Council official (Jane Doe #1) and White House staff (John Doe #1). Stakeholders also held discussions with senior department officials, including at least one political appointee in the department’s Civil Rights Division (Jane Doe #2). Jane Doe #1, John Doe #1, and others in the White House separately expressed concern regarding the potential partisan political impact of parent mobilization and organization around school issues in the upcoming midterm elections.”

 

 

 

 

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