Educational Redlining

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Heights Community Congress (HCC), founded in 1972, is Greater Cleveland, Ohio’s oldest fair housing enforcement organization.  For over four decades HCC has been conducting audits of the real estate industry to expose and discourage racial steering and disparate treatment of African American and white home seekers.  Each September, HCC organizes a home and garden tour […]

Ohio Supreme Court Rules Private Charter School Management Firm Owns Public Assets

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Yesterday Ohio’s elected, Republican-dominated supreme court ruled that a privately held, for-profit charter management company, White Hat Management, owns the equipment and assets of several White Hat Hope Academies and Life Skills Academies that had sought to sever ties with White Hat and hire a new management company to run the schools. White Hat is […]

Ohio Regulator Favors Politically Connected Charter School Sponsors, Resigns When Exposed

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Things unraveled pretty quickly last week for David Hansen, the director of school choice at the Ohio Department of Education.  On Tuesday, the State Board of Education, dominated by appointees of Republican Governor John Kasich, met and discussed why, as Ohio began to evaluate the sponsor-authorizers of Ohio’s charter schools, the test scores of students […]

Ohio Fast-Tracks Emergency Manager for Youngstown Schools and More Districts in Future

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The headline on Doug Livingston’s piece in the Akron Beacon Journal, says it all: Ohio Lawmakers Scrap Elected School Boards and Union Contracts, Usher In Private Control After Barring Opposition Testimony. Livingston explains: “The bill began innocuously in the House as an effort to help communities turn schools into comprehensive learning centers for the neighborhood. […]

New Illinois Analysis: Test Scores Correlate with School’s Economic Level, Not School’s Quality

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States like my own state of Ohio that assign letter grades (A-F) to schools and school districts base these rankings pretty much on the standardized test scores of the students.  Test scores—with high school graduation rates sometimes added to the algorithm that determines the grade—are understood as the way to measure school quality.  The “A” […]

State School Rankings Cause Educational Redlining

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These remarks were delivered as part of a Heights Community Congress event on April 24, Educational Redlining. Let me say how privileged I am that you invited me to participate tonight.  Our children thrived here in the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Schools and I believe our schools are among our community’s most important assets.  And it […]

A Musical Performance: Collaborative Learning, Authentic Assessment, Opportunity to Learn

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Earlier this week my husband and I attended Reaching Musical Heights, a concert that happens in our school district every four years.  It is sponsored by Reaching Heights, the nonprofit organization that promotes equity and opportunity to learn across the Cleveland Heights-University Heights school district’s elementary and middle schools and that rents Severance Hall, the gorgeous, art […]

Richard Rothstein Tells Cleveland Audience: Public Policy Created Segregation and White Flight

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In a 2004 book, Class and Schools, Richard Rothstein, of the Economic Policy Institute, examined social and economic factors in the lives of children and in the community that affect the academic performance of children in school.  Rothstein has been examining economic factors that affect student achievement for years, and his observations have recently been […]

Should the Federal Government Be Determining How States Evaluate Teachers?

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Senator Lamar Alexander, chair of the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, held another hearing this week on the potential reauthorization of the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act, since 2002 called No Child Left Behind (NCLB). The subject of this week’s hearing was federal requirements for evaluating school teachers. While it is […]

Ohio Auditor’s Report on Low Attendance at Dropout Recovery Schools Confirms Long Trend

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Last October, Ohio State Auditor, Dave Yost sent staffers unannounced to 30 charter schools across the state to see if the headcount of students present matched the number of students the schools had declared were enrolled this year.  Yost announced on January 22, 2015 that, “Out of the 30 schools reviewed, seven were identified as […]