Alan Singer

Some companies are using bailout funds to make jobs permanently disappear — and those 'human workers are not coming back': historian

The federal Coronavirus bailout contains no restrictions on corporate investment in automation. That may be the most serious long term consequence of the pandemic.

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Historian explains what binds Trump’s extremely rich and economically struggling supporters together

Like many who lean left, even many to the right of center, I find Donald Trump’s contempt for law, disrespect for people, derision of opponents, disdain for facts and truth, erratic and self-serving behavior, and violation of democratic principles of government, frightening. I worry about the future of the nation if he is reelected, and if climate change is as disruptive as predicted, of the world. I fully expect that if Trump loses a close race in 2020 he will declare the election “fake news” and refuse to recognize the result. I have no confidence that Republicans in the legislative and judicial branches would stand up for the Constitution and throw the bastard out.

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This Bronx principal is running for Congress as a progressive Democrat

Bronx, New York school principal Jamaal Bowman wants to join the Congressional "Squad." Bowman, currently principal of the Cornerstone Academy for Social Action, is challenging long-term Democratic Party incumbent Elliot Engel in the Democratic Party primary to represent the 16th Congressional district which includes neighborhoods in the northern Bronx and southern Westchester. Bowman is endorsed by the Justice Democrats, who supported Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in her election to Congress.

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It's 2019 and students are still getting suspended, expelled and arrested for refusing to recite the 'Pledge of Allegiance'

In February, an 11-year-old African American student at the Lawton Chiles Middle Academy in Lakeland, Florida faced criminal charges after he refused to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance and supposedly created a “disturbance in the classroom.” School and police authorities insisted he was not arrested because he refused to say the “Pledge,” but because he refused to leave the classroom when ordered to by a school administrator. Students have the legal right in Florida and the constitutional right in the United States to opt out of participating in the Pledge of Allegiance and flag ceremonies.

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This religious group is asking for permission to deny a secular education in the name of religious freedom

Should a religious group be permitted to deny a secular education to the children of its members in the name of religious freedom? A battle over the right of children to learn, to think, and to be prepared for life in the modern world is now being fought out in the East Ramapo community in New York State.

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Investigative Report: Charter Schools Gone Wild

The just-released Network for Public Education (NPE) report, “Charters and Consequences,” documents charter school scams supported by wealthy “philanthropists,” powerful political interests and an assortment of entrepreneurs looking to make money off of education. Eleven studies look at the charter school assault on public education, from Oakland, California to Brooklyn, New York with stops in Arizona, Texas, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. Operating “behind a wall of secrecy,” the dark side of the charter movement includes “mismanagement, failure, nepotism or outright theft and fraud” and “abuse of taxpayer funds.” The full report is available online. Unless otherwise noted, information in this blog comes from the report.

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Education Publisher Pearson's Global Ambitions Reflects Scope of Privateers Now Upending Public Schools

Powerful forces are at work shaping global education in both the North Atlantic core capitalist nations and regions historically referred to as the Third World.

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13 Questions That Scare Charter School Advocates

The Network for Public Education is challenging the Trump/DeVos anti-public school agenda. According to NPE, “DeVos and her allies have worked for decades pushing charters, vouchers and neo-vouchers such as education tax credits. DeVos even supports virtual charter schools that have a horrific track record when it comes to student success.”

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Why Massachusetts Is Ground Zero in the Battle Over Charter Schools

Massachusetts is probably the most liberal state in the United States and by many measures its public school system is also the best in the nation. According to the 2016 edition of Education Week’s Quality Counts report Massachusetts schools received an overall grade of B+, no state received an A, and the national grade was C. The report grades states and schools on the opportunities students have for success from birth to adulthood, K-12 achievement, and equitable school funding.

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Pearson Targets India to Profit From the Poor

With its North American textbook and testing market shrinking, with profits and stock prices in decline, and with its African and Philippine ventures drawing the attention of critics, Pearson (Mis)Education hopes to restore profit at the expense of millions of poor people in India. Once “innovations” are in place, there is nothing to stop the Pearson virus from infecting schools in United States communities.

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Success Academy’s Hedge Fund Philanthropist Is Raising Money for Trump

According to Forbes magazine, John Paulson is worth over $11 billion. He is the 42nd richest person in the United States and the 108th richest in the world. Paulson made a big part of his fortune betting against low-income homeowners and on the collapse of subprime mortgage market and during the 2007-2008 global financial crisis. Millions were hurt, but Paulson made money.

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How Charter Schools Break the Rules – and Don’t Seem to Care

Charters schools, when first proposed in the late 1980s, were envisioned as a way for public school systems to experiment with educational options. Some still play this role. However over the last two decades charter schools have largely evolved into a way to make money from public dollars, either through for-profit charter school corporations or for well-paid CEOs of supposedly not-for profit charter school networks.

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What's Donald Trump's Plan for American Education?

Other than legal problems with the so-called Trump University, very little attention is being paid to The Donald’s views on education. But the operation of Trump U gives some insight into how the wheeler-dealer-in-chief would address public education in this country if he ever becomes President.

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NYC Public Advocate Launches Lawsuit Against Success Academies

Success Academy is New York City's largest charter school network. About 11,000 children attend its thirty-six schools. The network receives federal and state funding and free space from New York City for all of its schools. But apparently it also discriminates against students with disabilities, at least according to a legal complaint filed by parents and New York City Public Advocate Letitia James.

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How Andrew Cuomo's Education Agenda Keeps Black and Latino Teachers Out of the Classroom

Under pressure from parents and teachers it looks like New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo is backing off on his demand that fifty percent of a teachers annual evaluation be based on student performance on high-stakes tests. Parents are furious because the focus on Common Core aligned testing turns schools into test prep academies. But the Cuomo "deform" package has other prongs and it is too early to celebrate.

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Why Are Eva Moskowitz's Success Academy Charter Schools Suspending Students Left and Right?

Hedge fund billionaires and major politicians like President Obama, Republican Presidential contender Jeb Bush, and New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo love charter schools. For Obama, Bush, and Cuomo they are the miracle cure for what ails American education. Los Angeles is considering a proposal Broad Foundation to turn half of its public schools into charters by 2023. But what is the "miracle" behind claims for higher student test scores at some well-known charter schools? It may simply be "lock them out to drive them out." Let's look at the Success Academy Charter School Network, whose schools would more aptly be named "Suspension Academies."

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