Monday, August 19, 2013

No One Puts Algebra 2 In A Corner (Math For All Kids) - The Jose Vilson | The Jose Vilson

No One Puts Algebra 2 In A Corner (Math For All Kids) - The Jose Vilson | The Jose Vilson:

No One Puts Algebra 2 In A Corner (Math For All Kids)

by JOSE VILSON on AUGUST 19, 2013
No One Puts Baby In The Corner
No One Puts Baby In The Corner
First, let me say that this Nicholson Baker article already starts off wrong by not discussing al-Khwarizmi’s contributions to algebra, mainly NAMING it.
Secondly, this conversation about math reminds me of the conversation we had about Andrew Hacker’s article last year. Here’s another guy who ostensibly doesn’t have a focus in any math-related subjects trying to reform math by limiting how much math students get. I wonder if he thinks similarly of English, and whether kids should have to read anything above Romeo & Juliet, and not Macbeth or Othello. Or the script to the Leonardo DiCaprio version of the movie. Or the manual to the VCR that once played the movie.
As far as I can see, higher-level literacy isn’t that necessary to the average citizen, either. Or do we not place the same restrictions on literacy as we do on math?
More importantly, I’m inclined to agree with Dana Goldstein on this: those who get higher-order math may fall along socioeconomic lines. Those in the higher rungs of
- See more at: http://thejosevilson.com/no-one-puts-algebra-2-in-a-corner-math-for-all-kids/#sthash.0MJE3u36.dpuf

Students Last: Finnished (stet)

Students Last: Finnished (stet):

Finnished (stet)

Finnish president halts American visits to his country's schools
Helsinki - President Sauli Niinisto of Finland has called for a moratorium on tours of their schools by American visitors.

In a speech given Tuesday at the Presidential Palace, Niinisto cited both uselessness and human fatigue as reasons for discontinuing educational visits. "We are a kind and generous people and we are certainly flattered by your interest in our educational system. However, we have answered all your questions and shared all of our wisdom. It is up to the United States to actually do something with the knowledge it has gained. I believe Americans might say it is time to, 'Put up or shut up.' After all how many times can we tell you that we trust and respect teachers and don't administer standardized tests until students are almost ready for college?"

Finnish schools need a little "me time"
Moreover President Niinisto suggested the constant scrutiny was having a deleterious effect on teaching and learning. "We are exhausted from all your visits to our schools. Last year, just one of our schools hosted more than 200 reporters and 850 U.S. school superintendents. Students are having a difficult time focusing because of all the camera clicking. Teachers have no time to write 

Melendez to Be Hired Under Unusual Salary Arrangement - LA School Report

Melendez to Be Hired Under Unusual Salary Arrangement - LA School Report:

Melendez to Be Hired Under Unusual Salary Arrangement

Waiting for Superman?
melendezThelma Melendez de Santa Ana will be hired as Mayor Eric Garcetti’s director of education and workforce development, pending confirmation by the LA Unified School Board at its monthly meeting on Tuesday.
“First and foremost, Mayor Garcetti wants to make LA students more career and college ready,” said Garcetti spokesman Yusef Robb. “That will require care and attention from Pre-K all the way through to adult job retraining programs.”
As KPCC’s Adolf Guzman-Lopez first reported, Melendez’s $140,000 salary will be paid by LA Unified; the City of Los Angeles will then reimburse the district for the salary, plus another $10,000 in benefits, plus 3 percent. The unusual arrangement, alluded to in the board’s meeting materials, must first be approved by the School Board — which could make for an interesting discussion.
Why the salary switcheroo? Because it will allow Melendez to remain in CALSTRS, the state pension system for certificated employees, including teachers and superintendents.
That may have been a sticking point for Melendez considering that a $140,00-a-year job in Garcetti’s office is quite the pay cut for her — she was making $265,000 over at Santa Ana, plus benefits.
“It’s a cost neutral way to help attract her to this position,” said Robb.
Melendez, 55, should have a number of years in CALSTRS under her belt, including time served as a teacher in Montebello and the superintendent of both Pomona and Santa Ana Unified. Pension benefits are a factor of highest salary earned, years worked, and age upon retiring.
So that means Melendez will, technically, be a district employee “on loan” to the city — assuming the School Board approves the arrangement.
Garcetti is likely to face a certain amount of criticism for the appointment, not so much for the pension gambit, but for the fact that Melendez is considered a “school 

Top of Our List | First Focus

Top of Our List | First Focus:

First Focus - Making Childen and Families the Priority






The Minimum Wage: A Children’s Issue

August 19, 2013
by Kevin Curran, First Focus
As the American economy continues to recover, there are many proposed changes that are supposed to better the nation. One recent proposal that warrants further discussion is raising the federal minimum wage. The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25 an hour and was last raised in 2009. The $7.25 minimum wage in 2013 is 21 percent below its value in 1968 when adjusted for inflation.
The federal minimum wage was first introduced in 1938 when President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Fair Labor Standards Act. The only way to change the federal minimum wage is through Congressional legislation. While minimum wage legislation has been passed numerous times over the years, the minimum wage has failed to keep up with an often increasing cost of living in the United States.
A minimum wage employee working full-time (40 hours per week & 52 weeks per year) earns an annual income of $15,080. According to the Census Bureau, the poverty threshold for a three person family (1 adult and 2 children) is $18,498. Clearly, a full-time minimum wage job cannot keep a three person family out of poverty. People who work full-time should not have to worry about not being able to feed and take care of themselves or their children.
The Economic Policy Institute (EPI) constructed the “basic family budget” or the amount of money a family needs to feed, shelter, and clothe itself, get to work and school, and subsist in 21st century America. For a single parent with two children, the basic family budget is $40,273. That is almost triple the amount a full-time minimum wage worker earns. This number is significantly higher than the Census Bureau’s poverty threshold.
A low minimum wage doesn’t just affect workers, but also the children that rely on their parents to provide for them. The child poverty rate in America currently stands at 22 percent; its highest level in 20 years. Effects of child poverty are extremely damaging, especially to children’s health, nutrition, education, housing, safety, and future earnings. When looking at child poverty today, low paid work is as significant as unemployment. Lisa Dodson from Boston College, and Randy Albelda of UMASS-Boston, wrote a paper in 2012 titled How Youth Are Put at Risk by Parents’ Low-Wage Jobs. According to the paper, youth in low-wage families are more likely to drop out of school, become obese, and become parents during their teen years.
There are various ways to go about increasing the federal minimum wage. Proposals have been introduced by a wide variety of people, ranging from President Obama, to economists and academics across the country. Recent bills in the House, introduced by Rep. George Miller, and in the Senate, introduced by Sen. Tom Harkin, have called for a gradual raise in the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10, concluding in 2016 by indexing it to inflation going forward. If this legislation were to be passed, over 30 million Americans would see a raise, and an estimated 18 million children would have parents who will get a raise.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago has found that a $1.75 raise in the federal minimum wage (making it $9 per hr.), as proposed by President Obama in his 2013 State of the Union address, would raise the real GDP by 0.3 percentage points in the short run. Additionally, they found that the $1.75 raise would have virtually no effect, positive or negative, on real GDP in the long run. Economists have tirelessly studied the effects that a higher minimum wage has on employment, and the best research shows that minimum wage increases have minimal, if any, effects on employment. The federal minimum wage has been increased 22 times since the 1930s, and it has yet to destroy the American economy.
Heidi Shierholz of EPI proposed in a 2009 paper that the federal minimum wage should be indexed to 50% of average wages. While a popular proposal is indexing the minimum wage to prices, or adjusting for inflation annually, Shierholz points out that this means the real minimum wage never changes. She states that indexing the minimum wage to average wages is the only way to ensure that a relative living standard would be maintained.
Besides lifting millions of workers and families out of poverty, one of the main arguments for raising the minimum wage is that it would boost the American economy by significantly increasing household spending. Minimum wage workers, who have a high propensity to spend, would only add to the gross domestic product (GDP) with increased household spending. On the other hand, those against the raise of the federal minimum wage argue that these extra costs on employers would mean less jobs and higher prices, thus creating a negative effect on the US economy. As discussed above, this argument does not seem to hold true.
According to the Brookings Institute, President Obama’s plan to raise the federal minimum wage to $9 would only cause about a 7% increase in household earnings for those households that they classify as “bottom-third households” (defined as a household in the bottom third of income distribution). While this may not seem like much, it is still an increase that would make work pay more for lower income families and help ensure parents can more adequately support their children. With the minimum wage at its current level, low wage workers and their families are often forced to supplement their earnings with public assistance support from food stamps or tax credits in order to make ends meet. These programs do so successfully and in combination, keep millions of children from poverty each year. For example, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC) lifted 4.9 million children out of poverty in 2011. But a higher minimum wage would ensure more workers could provide for their families through their earnings alone. Current minimum wage workers would not be the only ones to see a raise if the minimum wage were increased. Many workers just above the new minimum wage would also be likely to see an increase in household income.
According to Gallup, 71 percent of American adults are in favor of raising the federal minimum wage to at least $9 per hour. The current $7.25 per hour minimum wage is not enough to provide a decent standard of living in the United States. More importantly, it is having lasting negative effects on our nation’s youth.
For more information on the impact of raising the minimum wage, please check back each day this week. We will have a post from Heidi Shierholz, economist at Economic Policy Institute, on Tuesday, followed by a joint post Wednesday from Randy Albelda at the University of Massachusetts Boston’s Center for Social Policy and Lisa Dodson at Boston College. Thursday we will have a contribution from Mary Kay Henry, International President of the Service Employees International Union. Friday we will have an infographic breaking down the key figures of the minimum wage debate.

Celebrating DACA’s First Anniversary

By Wendy Cervantes
August 15, 2013
Today marks the first year anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an  Read More »

Keeping Kids in Nursing Homes: Florida’s Practice of Institutionalizing Children with Disabilities

By
August 8, 2013
By Brianna Gross  Read More »
Categories: None

Hunger and Obesity: Efforts to Combat the Problem through SNAP Pilot Programs

By
August 8, 2013
By Anthony Eleftherion Read More »
Categories: None

Diverse Children: Improving Outcomes for America’s Non-Majority Child Population

By Wendy Cervantes
August 2, 2013
This week First Focus and the Foundation for Child Development hosted a congressional briefing in cooperation with Congresswoman Judy Chu (D-CA) and the Congressional Read More »

Public Pre-K by the Numbers

By Kevin Lindsey
July 29, 2013
Too much time and too many limited school resources are spent helping kids who are behind at the start of their academic careers catch up, rather than challenging all students to meet their full poten Read More »

Our Ebook Adventure

By Ed Walz
July 26, 2013
First Focus just released our first-ever ebook — a digital version of our new Children’s Budget 2013. Read More »
Categories: None

Public Benefit Asset Limits: Consequences for Children and Families

By
July 16, 2013
By Anthony Eleftherion, First Focus Intern Associate Read More »
Categories: None

Private Pre-K by the Numbers

By Kevin Lindsey
July 16, 2013
As noted in a recent paper, private pre-K is often out of reach for many familie Read More »

Kids’ Advocates: Start Talking Tax Reform

By Ed Walz
July 10, 2013
Willie Sutton, when asked by a reporter why he robbed banks, famously answered “Because that’s where the money is.” Children’s advocates should be getting involved in the growing conversation about co Read More »

Nite Cap 8-19-13 #BATsACT #RealEdTalk #EDCHAT #P2 #Cheats4Change


James Baldwin said it best: 

"For these are all our children, and we will profit by or pay for whatever they become."


A BIG EDUCATION APE NITE CAP


TODAY

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A Scandal That's Exposing Ugly Truths About the School Privatization Agenda | Alternet #CHEATS4Change
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Associated Press Propaganda: What the AP Survey Really Shows | deutsch29
Associated Press Propaganda: What the AP Survey Really Shows | deutsch29: Associated Press Propaganda: What the AP Survey Really ShowsAugust 18, 2013On August 17, 2013, the Associated Press (AP) announced that a survey they conducted in June and July 2013 found that not only do parents really like standardized tests– they approve of the high-stakes usage of such tests and believe that the number o
inBloom’s actual Dear John Letter to John White: (It’s not me, it’s you) | Crazy Crawfish's Blog
inBloom’s actual Dear John Letter to John White: (It’s not me, it’s you) | Crazy Crawfish's Blog: inBloom’s actual Dear John Letter to John White: (It’s not me, it’s you)Posted on August 18, 20130 Sometimes life hands you stories that are simply better than any cheap fiction you can pick up from a newsstand or checkout line. Take for example this on-again-off-again “data sharing” relationship betw
Teachers pay more out of pocket for their kids - NBC News.com
Teachers pay more out of pocket for their kids - NBC News.com: Teachers pay more out of pocket for their kidsFile photo of school teacher Liza Gleason shopping for back to school supplies at a Target store August 13, 2008 in Daly City, California. Teachers are paying more of their own money for supplies and even clothes and food for schoolchildren.A second-year pre-kindergarten teacher at Salem El
Nite Cap 8-18-13 #BATsACT #RealEdTalk #EDCHAT #P2 #Cheats4Change
James Baldwin said it best: "For these are all our children, and we will profit by or pay for whatever they become."A BIG EDUCATION APE NITE CAPTODAY8-18-13 Seattle Schools Community ForumSeattle Schools Community Forum:Arson at Madrona Elementary SchoolThe Times reports an arson-based fire at Madrona sometime Sunday morning.  It was reported by someone who drove by the school and reported seeing




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