Is Someone Thinking About Giving Me a Few Million to Start an Education News Network? Not Likely.
No one would be foolish enough to give me a couple million to start an online education news network. I'm the wrong guy for the job, in spades. But it would be nice if someone on the progressive side of education got that kind of money to put together a slick, comprehensive website to cover education news, staffed with serious, experienced journalists.
I don't see that happening. But ex-CNN and NBC anchor Campbell Brown is getting big money tostart an online news network with a privatization/"education reform" slant. It must be nice to have friends in high financial places.
Brown's nonprofit news site is supposed to go live in mid July. She's hired 13 people so far, including a former editor at Time magazine and a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist. It takes a decent chunk of change to pay 13 quality staff members while also taking care of general startup costs. But money isn't really a problem when your funding comes from the likes of Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Walton Family Foundation, among others.
As in the world of politics, there's a financial imbalance between the people supporting conservative and progressive education agendas. In education, the big money is on the anti-union, anti-tenure, pro-charter, pro-voucher side. They have the means to package and disseminate their message. There's just not the same kind of money on the progressive side.
This isn't Brown's only educational venture. She also runs another nonprofit with deep pockets devoted to fighting teacher tenure and seniority laws in court. And she's hardly a lone voice crying in the wilderness. A number of well funded organizations push a similar agenda. For instance, there's Students First, the group started by Michelle Rhee who built her educational reputation on lies and half truths about her successes as a teacher and as chancellor of the Washington, D.C. schools. She raised lots of money before she got kicked out of her own organization. Students First also has a high powered Board of Directors. One of the board members is Dan Senor, who was an aide to President George W. Bush, chief spokesperson for the Coalition Provisional Is Someone Thinking About Giving Me a Few Million to Start an Education News Network? Not Likely. | The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch | Tucson Weekly: