Education is in the news

The strikes in Chicago are making a bigger impact than I initially gave them credit for. One way I can tell is that a tech news aggregator I follow (remember, I said tech news) has, not one, not two, but 4 articles talking about Education.

The Pro CPS Strike side

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/negotiators-reach-framework-to-end-chicago-teachers-strike-classes-could-resume-monday/2012/09/14/bb3fa52c-fed3-11e1-98c6-ec0a0a93f8eb_story.html

I find it fascinating how Jesse Jackson kinda pops out of the woodwork once in a while. What is most interesting is how the “people” are cast to be on the same side as the Unions, both against the BOE and the City. What they argue is indeed good and worthy – to lift up those schools and districts that are getting the butt-end of the deal in terms of finances. If you take this story as it is, it sounds like the pro-Union crowd is so looking out for kids that they are willing to sacrifice… well, teaching, I guess. I would like to find out what happened after the 19-day strike 25 years ago – was it a good thing overall for the kiddos? Did it help?

The Anti CPS Strike side

http://www.studentsfirst.org/blog/entry/statement-from-studentsfirst-ceo-and-founder-michelle-rhee

http://www.news-gazette.com/news/courts-police-and-fire/2012-09-17/chicago-mayor-court-must-end-teachers-strike.html

Michelle Rhee, the now famous poster child for StudentsFirst, paints a picture of greedy unions and greedy teachers. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel is made out to look like some kind of tree-wielding ogre, reading to smash the impudent unions with the force of Law. No matter who is actually “right”, the Union’s President is quoted as saying “There’s no trust for our members of the board” – a very telling statement if indeed true for most folks. Based on these articles, it seems that the parents (the three or four that were interviewed out of 500,000+ effected parents) are on the same side as the unions.

Is the problem just money?

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CFT negotiations with the board: no new news

After the media blitz last week about the “informational pickets”, I was a bit surprised at the total silence the followed the much-touted Wednesday meeting. I sent emails to board members, CFT reps and others and heard nary a thing. I looked in the media websites and didn’t find anything.

 

Until this morning when one of my gerbils found something in a Friday WICD report:

http://www.wicd15.com/news/top-stories/stories/wicd_vid_5786.shtml

 

Bottomline, no change. That was rather anti-climatic.

 

For the most part, the Unit 4 teachers are amazing! I took a walk last night and saw several teachers working at 8:pm getting ready for the week. I hear parents speaking very highly of this teacher or that teacher. Stephanie Stuart is doing an excellent job of highlighting various staff and the awesome things going on.

 

I still do not really get the point of the informational picket. What did it accomplish? What was it supposed to accomplish? What am I missing?

Slightly OT: Models for Building Local Broadband

There will be a panel at the Urbana City Council Chambers hosted by Brandon Bowersox-Johnson (a proponent of GigaBit Squared – I think) and featuring speakers sponsored by the Urbana IMC (mostly in favor of local ownership):
https://www.broadbandillinois.org/calendar/186

 

Models for Building Local Broadband: Public, Private, Coop, Nonprofit

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