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Broad, Walton, and Their LA-based Nonprofit, Great Public Schools Now

September 25, 2016

Los Angeles is the focus of a major billionaire-funded, astroturf effort to expand the charter sector. And where there is a major market-driven reform push, a new, billionaire-funded nonprofit is often on the horizon. So it is with the 2015-created nonprofit, Great Public Schools Now (EIN 47-4962715, which was actually granted nonprofit status in February 2016). As Los Angeles Times‘ Howard Blume reported in November 2015:

The new organization, called Great Public Schools Now, is based in Los Angeles and will take the next steps in a plan that initially was spearheaded by the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation. A draft of that proposal, dated in June, called for raising $490 million to enroll half the students in the L.A. Unified School District [in successful charters and other high-quality public schools] over the next eight years.

The nonprofit will be run by two executives from ExED, a local company that specializes in helping charter schools manage their business operations. Former banker William E.B. Siart will chair the governing board; Anita Landecker will serve as interim executive director.

Blume continues the Great Public Schools Now story in June 2016, and he notes a suspicious shift in the kinds of schools the Broad-Walton-funded group supposedly wants to expand:

A controversial group that began with the mission of rapidly expanding charter schools in Los Angeles has named its board of directors, come out with a plan and publicly defined its mission as supporting new, successful public schools of any kind.

The board for Great Public Schools Now mostly includes faces and groups that are familiar in the education reform wars of L.A., including representatives from the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation and the Walton Family Foundation.

The chair of the nonprofit is retired banker Bill Siart, the only board member who had been previously announced. …

Nearly all the other board members are widely regarded as pro-charter, even though their backgrounds are diverse. …

The group’s glossy, 16-page plan identifies 10 low-income, low-achievement neighborhoods as areas of focus. Clustered in the east San Fernando Valley and south and east of downtown, they include Boyle Heights, Pacoima and South Gate.

Although the plan is short on specifics, the group plans to announce its first grants Thursday. They could help schools in the targeted areas in a variety of ways. …

The newly released plan differs substantially from a draft obtained last year by The Times. That draft, which was not intended for public release, harshly criticized L.A. Unified and identified charter schools as the path forward, with the goal of moving half of district students into charters over eight years. The draft appeared to have been prepared to give to potential funders.

Critics probably will continue to view that draft as the real blueprint and the document released this week as public relations.  …

Timed with the release of its plan, Great Public Schools Now will launch a six-figure TV and print campaign, including ads in the L.A. Times.  …

While insisting that its focus will be on all schools, not charters alone, the group isn’t disclosing all pertinent details. It declined this week to provide information on its funders and how much money they are providing.

According to its website, Great Public Schools Now has a seven-member board and a three-member team. The board includes Walton Foundation K12 education program director, Mark Sternberg, and Broad Foundation executive director, Gregory McGinty. The team includes California Charter School Association (CCSA) senior VP of governmental affairs, Myrna Castrejon.

The Great Public Schools Now website includes no word on its funders. (There’s a link for funders, but no info.)

As for its “about/mission” page: It seems that Great Public Schools Now purports to expand all sorts of “successful public schools” (charter, magnet, pilot, and partnership schools)– even as it will offer startup grants only for charter schools:

Great Public Schools Now will fund the growth of high-quality public schools in high-need Los Angeles neighborhoods. To help support the growth of schools, grants will fund the identification and development of new charter school facilities, efforts to recruit and prepare public school teachers and provide support and coaching to public school leaders, and efforts to deepen conversations between educators and families to create more collaboration and public participation in creating more high-quality public schools.

MISSION

Great Public Schools Now is a California not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring all Los Angeles students receive a high-quality education by accelerating the growth of high-quality public schools.

Today, more than 160,000 students in Los Angeles and surrounding cities attend schools that are failing to provide them with a quality education. Our goal is to help as many students as possible get the education they want, need and deserve by replicating successful public schools, such as charter, magnet, pilot, and Partnership schools, in high-poverty areas of Greater Los Angeles.

Again, Los Angeles, you don’t get to know where the charter startup money is coming from, though the Broad and Walton presence on the Great Public Schools Now board is clue enough. The Walton Foundation has specific areas in Los Angeles that it will fund for new charter schools. Note that the Waltons offer no option to fund any other type of school besides charter schools.

In October 2015, I wrote about the Walton Foundation’s 2016-20 strategic plan. Below is an excerpt that might help clarify the Walton intention in Los Angeles:

Here are excerpts from the Walton report, including what they supposedly learned on their way to buying what they want.

The Foundation seeks to attract and develop talent to staff teaching, school leadership, district and organizational leadership positions through the support of organizations such as Teach for America. … The Foundation supports national advocacy organizations in order to create policy environments that support reform. Key grantees in this area include the National Association of Charter School Authorizers, Families for Excellent Schools, and Democrats for Education Reform. …

The Waltons view their “strategy” as somehow neutral. You know, “We fund all sorts of schools, without bias towards charters… But, oh, yeah, we really prefer charters, as our spending history clearly attests”:

The Foundation sees its strategy as agnostic with regard to sector (public charter schools, traditional public schools, private schools). … The Foundation’s funding history includes a significant amount of support for charter schools, however. In fact, roughly two-thirds of the Education Program’s investments support the growth of a high-quality charter sector in some way. This seeming preference for charter schools is in line with the Foundation’s theory of change that requires change agents, like new, high-quality charter schools, to increase competition in citywide school systems….

The Waltons do not see themselves as buying up democracy in order to shape it into the Image of Walton. And they are concerned about building grass roots support for their imposed reform. It seems that they thought the grass roots support would just happen and would manifest itself in automatic “competition” between charters and traditional public schools. Such competition has not happened; so, the Waltons want to increase their funding (and presence) in three key cities in order to petri-dish their latest strategic plan, which will now include grit and determination:

The Walton Family Foundation’s original theory of change was that expanding choice would spur competition, and consequently create system-wide improvements. The Foundation thought that once choice options reached a critical mass or sufficient “market share,” transformational, system-wide change would begin to occur.40 With over 20 years of learning from grantees and their communities, the Foundation’s theory of change is evolving and expanding. As Marc Holley describes it, “We have come to the realization that choice in and of itself is necessary but not sufficient to drive change at scale. We are more deliberate in thinking about what needs to be in place in order to promote functioning choice.” …

From their perch at the top, the Waltons need to get the parents (the bottom) on their side:

One area where the Foundation has received criticism is in the area of community engagement. It has been accused of having a top-down approach that does not adequately address the needs and desires of parents, local advocacy groups, and community groups. This is an issue the Foundation is grappling with. “The provision of choice, and the publication of data on school performance, has sometimes had little impact, especially in districts where reform lacks adequate local ownership, community and wider civic involvement, and parent engagement,” [Walton Foundation Senior Advisor] Bruno Manno notes. He identifies two levers in engaging local partners and communities more thoroughly: 1) building an active coalition of supporters, and 2) cultivating local advocacy partners. “We need a local and civic base of support for the work that’s going on. The work we support requires a stable constituency to be advocates for schools over time. There is a political dimension as well, the community and families need to understand what options are available.”

It seems that the Walton-funded writing on the Los Angeles wall might well entail expanding charters as the answer to making all Los Angeles schools better. It also believes in bringing traditional school districts around to its market-driven-reform thinking via corporate-reform-group infiltration. Too, it seems that the Walton Foundation believes that grass roots support for its effort is a matter of getting the public mind in line with the Walton charter expansion priorities.

The Walton intentions in incubating and expanding corporate reform fit hand-in-glove with the Broad intentions for Los Angeles. On its website, the Broad Foundation generously tosses around the term “public schools” even as it features KIPP, Success Academies, and Teach for America among its handful of “key grantees.” Furthermore, the Broad listing of current grantees is for the most part a corporate reform festival:

4.0 Schools
Achievement First
Achievement School District
Bellwether Education Partners
Bright Star Schools
Broad Center for the Management of School Systems
Building Excellent Schools
Center for American Progress
Central Michigan University Foundation
Charter School Growth Fund
Common Sense Media
Education Reform Now
Education Week
EXED, LLC
Great Public Schools Now
Green Dot Public Schools
Harvard University

IDEA Public Schools
Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP)
Leadership for Educational Equity
Michigan Education Excellence Foundation
Michigan State University – College of Education
National Alliance for Public Charter Schools
National Center on Education and the Economy
National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ)
Noble Network of Charter Schools
Orange County Public Schools
Partnership for Los Angeles Schools
Policy Innovators in Education Network
Progressive Policy Institute
Results in Education (RIE) Foundation
Scholarship Management Services
School of Visual and Performing Arts
Silicon Schools Fund, Inc.
Success Academy Charter Schools
Teach For America

Note that Broad is currently funding ExED, and that Great Public Schools Now has two ExED reps on its board/team: William Siart and Anita Landecker. What this illustrates is the all-too-common corporate reform funding incest. (According to the Walton 2013 tax form, Walton has also given ExED $50,000, and the Waltons loaned ExED $5 million for Los Angeles charter school facility financing.)

Like Walton, Broad expands choice, and it funds corporate-reform-minded organizations that can provide the minions and leadership transplanting necessary to transform a traditional school district into a decentralized, under-regulated, market-fed, billionaire-directed farce.

Broad and Walton are likely the chief funders of Great Public Schools Now. If there were other notable funders, they would also have a seat on the Great Public Schools Now board.

One of the Great Public Schools Now goals is to drum up more “public participation in creating more high quality public schools”– a goal already noted in the Walton strategic plan referenced above.

Given the top-down direction of corporate reform, that “grass roots” support is likely to be fabricated– as is the case in of a charter school rally held in Pacoima on September 17, 2016, and sponsored by CCSA:

The participants leading this rally were logo-shirt-clad, current charter school admin, teachers, parents, and students– not the public outside of charter schools demonstrating to get more charter schools, but those already associated with such schools. The participants were bused to the event, and some students told education activist Karen Wolfe (who produced the included video) that they would be receiving extra credit for attending the rally.

Astroturf.

In order to collect information on crowd members, one principal suggested they complete a CCSA information card. The enticement was participation in a raffle for prizes. The information cards could come in handy to provide *proof positive* that *the Los Angeles public wants choice.*

There was even a charter-principal-led, charter school pledge of allegiance:

Pledge of the Northeast San Fernando Valley Charter Schools

We pledge allegiance to the high-quality public schools in the Northeast Valley, where all students can succeed, where all parents can choose, where hope never expires.

I wonder how many individuals in the crowd were not already associated with CCSA. My guess: Not many.

Great Public Schools Now has a Walton- and Broad-financed “team member” whose job it is “leading our efforts and strategy around Community Outreach and Engagement.” In other words, she is being paid to convince those being acted upon by Broad and Walton to publicly unite behind what Broad and Walton want– even as her employer refuses to publicize its Broad, Walton, and possibly other funders.

I challenge her to do so without the use of logo t-shirts, chartered buses, raffles, or extra credit.

And I challenge Great Public Schools Now to disclose its funders on its website.

fanning-cash-2

____________________________________________________________

Released July 2016– Book Three:

School Choice: The End of Public Education? 

school choice cover  (Click image to enlarge)

Schneider is a southern Louisiana native, career teacher, trained researcher, and author of both A Chronicle of Echoes: Who’s Who In the Implosion of American Public Education and Common Core Dilemma: Who Owns Our Schools?.

both books

Don’t care to buy from Amazon? Purchase my books from Powell’s City of Books instead.

9 Comments
  1. Laura H. Chapman permalink

    It seems that the Walton Foundation believes that grass roots support for its effort is a matter of getting the public mind in line with the Walton charter expansion priorities.

    This is the same frame of mind and basis of a lot education funding at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The “authority” of the billionaires on educational matters is attained by throwing money at organizations willing to serve as adjuncts and agents for their control of public education.

    • A telling word, there: THROW. It is careless, reckless and frightening to see how we’ve entered that state in our worship of gold where massive money “donations” can create such haphazard irresponsibility at all levels.

  2. LAEducator permalink

    If these corporate entities really want to “help public schools,” why don’t they ever actually donate money to REAL public schools?

  3. Jack permalink

    I’ve been posting a riveting video on the Ravitch blog, one showing pro-public-school parents confronting a shill — proselytizing for Eva Moskowitz’ SUCCESS ACADEMY — who accosts parents and children as the enter and leave their public school, P.S. 261. I even discovered the on-line job listing for the job that this “Shill-Meister” is doing. Please indulge as a I post some of this here:

    ==============
    Eva from Success Academy has the audacity to send her winged monkey recruiters to lurk outside traditional public schools — some of them upscale, well-regarded schools with top-notch faculty — and accost parents bringing their kids to school. They then tell them every lie, scare tactic, and phony promise they can, to get contact info, so they can poach these students.

    There’s a great video of public school parents and students at a more upscale part of New York City confronting one of Eva’s Shill-meisters. The recruiter appears to be losing an argument to what looks like a 4th or 5th grader (which I guess is a credit to the school that it produces such brilliant students who can debate off-the-cuff with adults like that.) A renown teacher, Jamie Fidler, is in this debate as well.

    I finally got around to making a transcript of this… riveting stuff:

    x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x
    ( 00:29 – 1:22 )

    ( 00:29 – 1:22 )
    PUBLIC SCHOOL CHILD: ‘So you don’t have to prove it when you say that it (Success Academy) is ‘the best elementary school in New York State’ ?”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “No, I don’t have to prove it. I have- ”

    PUBLIC SCHOOL CHILD: “So how can you just rely on somebody’s word?”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “Someone else rated it. I can’t … I can’t re-run every experiment that’s done. I can’t re-run every rating system.“

    TEACHER/PARENT JAMIE FIDLER: “No, but- “

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I have to accept- ”

    PUBLIC SCHOOL CHILD: “Can you each time just research people who says who your quoting pro-noy(?) ?”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “Boy, everything I say -?”

    TEACHER/PARENT JAMIE FIDLER: (to the CHILD) “Yeah… That is SUCH a GOOD point.”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “So everything I run into. .. I can’t… I have to … I can’t just accept an outside expert’s … conclusion?”

    TEACHER/PARENT JAMIE FIDLER: “Well, if you make a statement like it (Success Academy) is ‘the best school in the state’, you kinda need to be able to back it up with SOMETHING.”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I’m repeating… Yes, and they-“

    PUBLIC SCHOOL CHILD: “You can’t even tell us WHO is saying this (i.e. Success Academy is “the best school in New York State.) You can’t even tell us WHERE YOU GOT THAT, or where it can be found?!”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I assume if you went to the web, and googled what I just said, you can come up with the report, which you could criticize yourself.”

    PUBLIC SCHOOL CHILD: “But you DON’T EVEN KNOW WHO DID that report.“

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I have NOT read that report.”

    TEACHER/PARENT JAMIE FIDLER: “I mean I could say that Rick Santorum is best candidate for president, but that doesn’t mean it’s true. Right? So, you know -”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “But, but you’re saying that an opinion -“

    TEACHER/PARENT JAMIE FIDLER: “ “If you’re making an assertion, you need to have SOMETHING – You need to be able just- “

    VIDEO CUTS OUT
    x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

    Here’s an earlier post about this:

    This is how you handle those SUCCESS ACADEMY (or other charter school) recruiters.

    A couple years back, Eva’s winged monkey recruiters had been lurking outside traditional public schools in a more upscale New York City neighborhood where Eva was about to open a school, accosting parents with a sales pitch to ditch their public school for one of Eva’s test prep factories.

    Unlike the uninformed lower income immigrant community folks and were duped, these folks knew what these recruiters were all about.

    The parents and teachers then got in the face of one of them, with the confrontation captured on video: (is he wearing one of Success Academy’s L.L. Bean’s backpacks?)

    I’m urging parent leaders Karen Wolfe and other acttivists, and teacher union leaders to like UTLA President Alex C-P to play this video to every parent and teacher, respectively
    that each of them can get to watch it.

    In Los Angeles, the Broad Plan will unleash
    hundreds of these paid recruiters t
    o accost parent and student at
    our traditional public schools., in an effort to
    poach the students attending public schools.

    Get lost, you money-motivated charter shills!!!!

    One of the teachers / parents here was Jamie Fidler, a nationally
    renown teacher who came into prominence in the documentary
    AMERICAN TEACHER (a mixed bag of a film, but that’s
    another story).

    They kept protesting, and Eva’s winged monkeys were
    never seen again.

    HAPPY ENDING

    Oh and again, here’s Jamie Fidler — a career teacher, like her father, who’s in it for decades— refuting the propaganda vilifying career unionized teachers:

    Oh, and don’t forget the end of the “mic check” that sent Eva’s Shill-meister running for the warm comforting bosom of Lady Eva:

    (I just figured out what they’re calling him … “the SUCCESS ACADEMY Flier-Man” ? The mic check reference him as a ” charter school fireman”)

    x x x x x x x x x x x x
    ( 2:11 – 2:46 )

    ( 2:11 – 2:46 )

    Mic Check Leader: “.. told this charter school flier-man. .. ”

    CROWD: ” … TOLD THIS CHARTER SCHOOL FLIER-MAN … ”
    ..
    Mic Check Leader: “.. that he should NOT be soliciting … ”

    CROWD: “THAT HE SHOULD NOT BE SOLICITING … ”

    Mic Check Leader: ” … in front of OUR public school.’

    CROWD: ” … IN FRONT OF OUR PUBLIC SCHOOL!”

    Mic Check Leader: “Our students …

    CROWD: “OUR STUDENTS …

    Mic Check Leader: ” … have told you that also!”

    CROWD: ” … HAVE TOLD YOU THAT ALSO!”

    Mic Check Leader: ” … and now these cameras.. ”

    CROWD: ” AND NOW THESE CAMERAS … ”

    Mic Check Leader: ” … are here to help us tell our story.”

    CROWD: ” … ARE HERE TO HELP US TELL OUR STORY.”

    Mic Check Leader: “.. mic check!”

    CROWD: ” MIC CHECK!”

  4. Jack permalink

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “What’s wrong with solicitation?”

    ANOTHER PARENT: “Children are NOT commodities!”

    — public school PARENT telling off one of Eva Moskowitz’ shills who stands outsidide accosting parents as they pick up and/or drop off their students ad P.S. 261
    ————————————-

    That two-line exchange sums up the market-based school reform.

    Here’s PART 2 of the parents, teachers, and kids confronting Eva’s Shill-Meister.

    First, here’s the title card, which I have transcribed here:

    x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x
    ( 2:46 – 2:57 )

    ( 2:46 – 2:57 )

    TITLE CRAWL:

    “Teachers at P.S. 261 said that they first tried asking the man handing out fliers to leave, but to no effect. Then on Thursday, parents, teachers, and students gathered in front of the school to confront him and ask why the Success Acadeny school was superior to their own.

    “The conversation did not go well — he was hired to hand out fliers, not to defend the school’s existence — but it energized the parents and teachers.

    ” ‘We can still fight in our little ways.,’ Ms. Fidler said.”

    ( 2:58 – 3:51 )

    ( 2:58 – 3:51 )
    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I didn’t make the rating (that he claims says that Success Academy is ‘the best elementary school in the state.’) Someone ELSE did.”

    ASIAN PARENT: “You don’t even know his name (the name of the guy who made the rating).”

    TEACHER/PARENT JAMIE FIDLER: Look, the point is .. is that we have no reason to believe you.”

    OTHER PARENT: ‘You’re passing out fliers for something you don’t know about. That’s kind of embarrassing.”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “Well then it would be my expert (?).”

    OTHER PARENT: ‘Would I ever stand out on a corner and hand out fliers with something that I know NOTHING about? ‘That’s kind of like despic- That’s like DECEIVING to the people to whom you’re handing out literature.””

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I don’t know NOTHING about it. I know that the students do well in (Success Academy) schools.”

    ASIAN PARENT: “I’m sorry, but the students to well in OUR school as well. “

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: (sarcastic) “That’s terrific.”

    ASIAN PARENT: “So there is NO REASON why you should be POACHING OUR STUDENTS! ”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: (sarcastic) “I’m, I’m… totally in favor of GOOD SCHOOLS.”

    ASIAN PARENT: “This is solicitation! It’s like anybody who’s trying to SELL A CAR!”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “What’s wrong with solicitation?”

    ASIAN PARENT: “This is solicitation.”

    OTHER PARENT: “”Children are NOT commodities!”

    ASIAN PARENT: “This is solicitation!”
    — (mimicking EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER)
    ” ‘Would you like to apply to our school?’ as you have a flier in your hand.
    It’s a solicitation!”

    OFF-CAMERA PARENT: “When we can’t even afford copy paper!”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I don’t see anything wrong with solicitation.”

    PARENT: “Exactly!”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “What’s wrong with solicitation?”

    ANOTHER PARENT: “Children are NOT commodities!”

    ASIAN PARENT: “This is solicitation.”

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: (to ASIAN PARENT) “I don’t see anything wrong with solicitation.”

    TEACHER: “We don’t have any of that paper (for solicitation fliers) in our school, and you want to know WHY? Because we don’t have the budget for it. But if we had a multi-million-dollar (advertising) budget that was funded by Wall Street and hedgefunds as they (Success Academy) are, then maybe we can have them (public school’s version shill-meisters) out there (at charter schools.) You’re talking about here’s like competition, like your best choice in a playing field that is not really even.”

    VIDEO CUTS OFF

    I think every voter in Massachusetts needs to see this video.

    Do the parents in Massachusetts REALLY want creeps like Shill-meister descending on the traditional public schools, lurking and annoying the sh#% out of parents and students?

    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: (to ASIAN PARENT) “I don’t see anything wrong with solicitation.”

    • Jack permalink

      I really find this video …

      … so disturbing on so many levels.

      I know Eva’s shills have a Constitutional right to be there and talk to people… you know… the whole concept of freedom of speech in a public space, and all o’ that, but shouldn’t the space outside a school — where parents escort their children on the way to and from school — be off-limits to this bullsh#%? Shouldn’t parents and students be free from this type of high-pressure sales and marketing? Has Eva no freakin’ shame?

      It should be like the area where people traverse to and from a church, synagogue, mosque, or whatever place of worship. For example, do Christians — the ones who aren’t psycho, that is — hang outside a synagogue or mosque, and harass people as they enter or exit,:

      “Your place of worship sucks. Your religion is all a total lie. Come on over to our place of worship, and find out all about Jesus, and how he died for your sins”?

      Or perhaps religious competition within Christianity — of within the same denomination of Christianity — would be a better comparison. Would Baptists hang out and bother Catholics as they enter or leave a Catholic church, in an attempt to lure them away from their current place of worship?

      Or do Catholics representing one parish annoy those entering the church of a neighboring parish.

      “Hey, our church Blessed Sacrament Church is so much better, or more true to Catholicism than your lousy, mediocre church, St. John’s. Our priests are so much holier, and that leads to our parishioners lead more Godly and holy lives. Here, take this flier, then come on over and hear what we have to offer.”

      The other thing that hit me:

      Could you imagine of parents or representatives of P.S. 261 fought fire with fire, and then showed up outside Success Academy Cobble Hill (or whatever Success Academy hired Eva’s Shill-meister to bother parents outside P.S. 261), and then engaged in the same high-pressure proselytizing?”

      Imagine them passing out fliers and saying stuff like:

      x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x
      “Almost all of your kids’ teachers at Success Academy are totally unlicensed and uncredentialed. Come over to P.S. 261, and your children will not only be taught by fully credentialed teachers, but many of those teachers are National Board Certified, and are highly acclaimed.”

      OR

      “Don’t let those claims of high test scores mislead you.

      “Your students are being turned into ‘little test-taking machines’, as one Success Academy executive bragged to NEW YORK MAGAZINE, because Eva and her untrained staff are giving children the educational equivalent of steroids, in the form of massive, toxic test prep — hours each day as the days for testing approaches — which, in turn, results in a narrowed curriculum devoid of anything creative — the arts, P.E., music, dance, critical thinking, creative thinking … again, all to achieve these worthless high test scores, scores that in the long run don’t mean a damn thing in terms of a child’s long-term success in school, or in life.”

      OR

      “Check out this video … (projecting the Charlotte Dial “rip-and-redo” video on a portable laptop, then showing it to the parents)

      “This callous b-word of a teacher, Charlotte Dial — and almost all Success Academy teachers — have never been licensed or credentialed in any state. She’s following Eva’s bogus, untested, and abusive teaching techniques that involve abuse and humiliation of children as young as four… as, incredibly, this is what Eva & Co. believe is the proper way to educate children, the same stuff that educational experts have studied and universally condemned.

      “Come over to our school P.S. 281, and spare your child from such despicable educational malpractice!?

      OR

      “Also, come over to P.S. 261, and your children won’t have to wear those godawful orange and navy blue Success Academy uniforms, those ugly duds that Eva makes you pay L.L. Bean through the nose for, and which Eva gets a taste of the sales. Your kids can wear whatever he or she wants, expressing their individuality through their wardrobe — among other avenues of self-expression — … just like Success Academy Board of Director Campbell Brown’s kids get to do at the rich kids’ private school, Heschel, that her own kids attend. This school’s run by hypocrites. Leave it, and come over to P.S. 261”
      x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

      First of all, unlike Eva and her minions, the folks at P.S. 261 — BOTH the parents or those who work there — have too much class and too much concern for the harmful impact such outrageous shilling would have on the SUCCESS ACADEMY children to ever go and lower themselves into the same goopy, gunky slime that Eva and her Shill-Meisters inhabit, and thus engage in this type of activity, with a total disregard for the well-being of the children involved.

      But just for sake of argument, what if this did happen?

      Eva would use her pull in NYC city government, and those parents or school representatives would end up in handcuffs, with Eva and her connections within government and the police working out beforehand some underhanded way to trump up some bogus charges for which to arrest them.

      Yet, Eva sees no problem with Success Academy folks doing the same thing at traditional public schools.

      My mother, now retired, was a 50-year career teacher — 35 years full-time, then another 15 subbing until she couldn’t do it anymore.

      I told her about this situation captured in the video — high-pressure salesmen accosting parents, attempting to get them to switch to a privately managed school — and she absolutely cannot believe what I’m saying.

      Now, in her 80’s, she started teaching when Harry Truman was still President — Fall 1952 — and she can’t believe that what Eva’s Shill-meister in the above video is permitted, or that Eva and he doing it believe that they are “the good guys” in this situation. She thinks the whole competition between schools over children — like Burger King trying to steal away McDonald’s customers — is crazy as a soup sandwich, and will lead to a disaster of epic proportions.

      “What’s wrong with solicitation?” Shill-meister asks.

      Sweet Jesus!

      ———————————–
      Michael Fiorillo
      September 23, 2016 at 3:03 pm

      Parents and teachers at these schools should surround these shills and harangue them until they leave; make it impossible for them to do their job, and show Evil Moskowitz there is aggressive pushback from the public school community to roll back her deceptive schemes.

  5. Jack permalink

    As promised, here’s the title of the actual Success Academy job — and the actual on-line job posting — that “Shill-Meister” was carrying out at Success Academy:

    “Community Organizer”

    … which, after the poor slobs start working for Eva, quickly morphs into…

    “Parent / Child Annoyer”
    (as seen in this video)

    … upon orders from Eva, of course.

    Here’s the actual job posting:

    https://www.themuse.com/jobs/successacademycharterschools/community-organizer-e3cff4?utm_source=Indeed&utm_medium=cpc&utm_content=Job%20Individual&utm_campaign=NYC%20Jobs

    It’s says that Eva’s looking for for someone who …

    — has experience with “2+ years canvassing”, which is sort of what the guy was doing with his clipboard outside P.S. 261 in the video;

    — reports “directly to the (S.A.) Associate Director of Enrollment” … enrollment, of course, meaning of course, the process of recruiting students to “enroll” in one of Eva’s schools;

    — can “develop comprehensive outreach plans that carefully consider the needs of each community and fits into a larger Enrollment strategy” … which, translated, means come up with whatever sleazy tactic and slick pitch which or whatever that will lure students into enrolling in S.A. … again, accomplishing this by any means necessary;

    — “enjoys collaboration and will work with Parent Engagement Managers to schedule, host and facilitate events and identify further opportunities to reach (i.e. recruit) prospective families”;

    — “has a positive, ‘can do’ attitude and will identify opportunities to gain deeper insight into creating more efficient and streamlined processes” … whatever that last part means … faster, cheaper ways to lure in suckers, I guess.

    Here’s full text:

    x x x x x x x x x x x x x x
    “Community Organizer — Success Academy

    “We are seeking a motivated, goal-oriented Community Organizer to create and maintain positive working relationships with community leaders and organizations on behalf of Success Academies. S/he is a self-starter committed to educational choice, education reform and the development of exemplary schools.

    “Reporting directly to the Associate Director of Enrollment, our Community Organizer should be someone who…

    ” – Has 2+ years canvassing and organizing experience in political or issue campaigns;

    “- Can develop comprehensive outreach plans that carefully consider the needs of each community and fits into a larger Enrollment strategy;

    ” – Is a skilled relationship builder that can identify community organizations and leaders to establish and nurture relationships to help build awareness of and partnerships with Success Academy;

    ” – Enjoys collaboration and will work with Parent Engagement Managers to schedule, host and facilitate events and identify further opportunities to reach prospective families;

    ” – Has a positive, ‘can do’ attitude and will identify opportunities to gain deeper insight into creating more efficient and streamlined processes; and

    ” – Is fluent in English and Spanish.

    “To join our team, please upload a cover letter and resume that outlines your candidacy. Your cover letter should explain in detail your qualifications for the position. Resumes without cover letters will not be reviewed.”
    x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

    Keep in mind these are your and my tax dollars paying for all this, money coming from the majority parents and citizens which all polling says support the survival of public education and support teachers as professionals, but in this instance, have no say in the way Eva is using this tax money — to pay her salary, to fulfill her goals and to serve her motives which again, are anathema to what the public actually wants regarding education.

    Those same parents and citizens may be firmly opposed to the privatization of public education via the expansion of Eva’s (and others’) privately-managed “public charter schools,” and who are also opposed to the de-professional-ization of teaching that goes hand-in-hand with this privatization of schools … as the less professional, less-trained, and less qualified “the help” is required to be, the less you have to pay them, and the more the bosses can pay themselves, and also, the more money they have on hand to these expand privately-managed charter schools.

    That’s why I’m only semi-sympathetic to Shill-meister.

    BOTTOM LINE: he’s just a hired shill, or a carnival barker trying to get suckers or marks to come in the tent where the more qualified and seasoned hucksters (Eva’s “Parent Engagement Managers”) then take over and try to close the sale…

    … or perhaps he’s a hunter of humans; if you will, who will, per Eva’s orders, will bring in his catch of the day … in the form of signatures and contact information from strangers whom he Eva orders him to accost and annoy outside schools, or on playgrounds, or wherever parents will likely be hanging out.

    At the end of the day, Shill-meister’s one and only commitment is merely to get paid — first, last and always — while, as to the negative long-term effect that the way he earns his living has on the future survival of democratically-governed and truly public education,

    … OR …

    … as to that harmful impact that his efforts have on the profession of teaching — turning teaching from a respected, decently-compensated profession such as doctors, lawyers, engineers, etc. … and then degrading it to that of a low-level, poorly-compensated, dubiously-trained service job like fast food, office temping, retails sales, etc…..

    … well, he couldn’t give two sh#%’s about ANY of that.

    All he cares about is whether, after he does what he was hired for, Eva’s checks will clear.

    Near the end of the video, he cluelessly opines:
    ( 3:24 – )

    ( 3:24 – )
    EVA’S SHILL-MEISTER: “I don’t see any problem with solicitation… what’s wrong with solicitation?”

    A lot, you money-motivated douchebag!

    You know, as I re-wartch the video …

    … it’s interesting to see how civil, calm and polite the parents are towards Eva’s Shill-Meister — way more than I would have been in that situation. The only one who shows a little anger is ASIAN PARENT at the very end, and, again she’s just demonstrating her understandable frustration at Shill-meiester’s inability to grasp why they object to what he’s doing.

    “This is a solicitation! This is like someone SELLING A CAR!”

    The off-camera ANOTHER PARENT put it best:

    “Children are NOT commodities!”

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  1. Ed News, Friday, September 30, 2016 Edition | tigersteach

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