Thursday, February 28, 2013

Who's Heading the Race to the Top Consortium?

That would be former SPS staffer Jessica de Barros.  Sigh.


mirmac1 said...

Who's next? Brad Bernatek, heading up the mega-data gathering, dissembling effort?

Melissa Westbrook said...

No, Brad is at..now I forget but I think it's another local ed foundation.

suep. said...

Former Broad Foundation trainee and SPS data guy Brad Bernatek is now with an enterprise called FSG, which had a hand in the local the "Race to the Top" $40 million "Road Map Project" deal.

This group of school districts (and many other partner organizations, unions, mayors, community agencies, housing authorities, educators, and parents) actively work together as part of a Collective Impact effort that FSG helped to design and launch.

(Another "Our Schools Coalition" style effort?)

Gates is an FSG funder.

DeBarros was also trained by the Broad Foundation.

Anonymous said...

For a laugh, go on linked in and see if any pro Ed Reformer like deBarros has held a job for more than 2 years in her entire career. These folks job-hop like nothing I've ever seen.

Yet they talk about loyalty and commitment at their EduDrinks parties. (I kid you not, it's a club).

Probably just the booze talking.


Anonymous said...

So how many folks are on this committee headed by Ms. de Barros?

How many are classroom teachers?

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...


HERE is a LINK to the Los Angeles Partnership.

Interesting is that former WS High School principal Bruce Bivins is the principal of one of the small schools at Roosevelt in LA.

-- Dan Dempsey

Anonymous said...

Here is the model used for Turnaround by the LA Partnership.

It would seem that since de Barros was hired by the consortium that they probably like this model.

I wonder if they did much analysis on the results achieved by the Partnership....

Keep in mind the SPS has been abysmal in performing accurate analyses of many academic changes.

-- like Everyday Math
-- Like New Tech Network Schools
-- Like HS Discovery Math adoption
-- Like Writers and Readers workshops.

etc. etc.

I hope the LA Partnership has produced positive academic results.

-- Dan Dempsey

Just Saying said...



Who are the folks pushing Discovery Math? There must be some big bucks behind this math program.

Anonymous said...

About the money....

Key Curriculum Press was publishing both
#1 IMP (Interactive Math Program) (used at Cleveland and garfield for three years via an NSF grant for "Professional Development" and
#2 the Discovering High School series.

Key Press has now decided to not publish any more math books.

It sold "Discovering" to Hart publishing and has been unable to find a buyer for IMP.

The NSF/EHR division has put 100 million + dollars into "Reform Math" programs.

Results do not matter as this is the "in crowd" politically correct agenda.

This is a part of USA education insanity. Constructivist "more hands on" activity centered math programs are loved by administration ... why?

Because the USA is the only developed nation that pushes "one size fits all" through high school.... some states are now requiring for high school graduation => one year algebra, one year geometry, one year advanced algebra, and on class above advanced algebra.

Social promotion into and through such advanced math courses degrades the quality of such classes.
The math situation is unlikely to improve much... because of CCSS.

The Common Core State Standards have many content standards that are OK.... BUT there are 8 standards for Mathematical Practice which are being used to continue the "same nonsense" that has NOT worked for at least the last two decades.

The WA legislators approved CCSS before they were even written.... it was all about the hope of Fed $$$$ and zero about thoughtful analysis.

Randy Dorn was required to submit a CCSS impact report to the Legislators on or before Jan 1, 2011 , which he failed to do.

Nobody cares about legal requirements and certainly not the legislators that write the laws one year and ignore them the next session.

Gates was the original CCSS funder and that is apparently all that is important,

-- Dan Dempsey

seattle citizen said...

Meanwhile, all Seattle schools are busy trying to do PD around CCSS and the Smarter Balance test that will accompany it. It's still unlcear whether Smarter Balance will be an 11th grade (?) graduation requirement, as HSPE is at 10th now. They might ditch the tests as graduation requirements entirely.

But CCSS is taking up large swaths of Pro Dev in schools district-wide.

The bit of CCSS that always cracks me up is this (from the CCSS FAQ sheet, but also in the standards themselves):
"The Standards require certain critical content for all students, including: classic myths and stories from around the world, America’s Founding Documents, foundational American literature, and Shakespeare."

As long as they managed to squeeze Shakespeare in there, I guess they're rigorous and exhaustive, right? Ol' Bill would no doubt be pleased.

seattle citizen said...

Oh, and word has it that the district has purchased a Literacy Design Collaborative product to serve the purpose of "helping" teachers prepare curriculum to meet CCSS standards...in their spare time...

So teachers are using valuable PD time to learn not only CCSS but also LDC. And the new PowerTeacher grading system. And the new Fusion. And the new this, that, and the other thing. Instead of, you know, collaborating? Like everyone wants them to do, and which is a danged good idea?

LDC, word has it, will NOT be "required," but hey, they bought it, principals will no doubt be looking for it (as they are looking for CCSS standards in lesson planning now), so....

Word has it that the LDC program merely packages simplistic teaching strategies and also requires time-sucking effort on planning every little detail of every little minute of lesson, connecting each to every little nuance of every little strand and target of CCSS. In addition, I suppose, to the teacher's own lesson planning. Or maybe in lieu of it? Ka-ching! Expensive dumbing down of curriculum that is more labor intensive!
Unless you can get TFAers to do it for cheap for a couple of years, sweating into the night because, you know, they're so damned dedicated and all.

mirmac1 said...

seattle citizen,

And here I was told the district was investing big $$ in PD to show general education teachers how to work with their ELL and special education students. I'm sure that's another goose-egg. Shakespeare's more important than actually mastering math and graduating HS.

Anonymous said...

Is SSD corrupt?

Need to Know

Melissa Westbrook said...

Need to Know, I don't think so but I think leadership is certainly getting the full-court press from ed reformers and their supporters. I think that the staff is probably exhausted from new directives, new staff at the top and just wondering what it is they are really supposed to be doing.

But corrupt? I hope not.