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Topic: Ravitch: New Group to Take Aim at Ed. Reform Trends
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Jerry P. Becker

Posts: 16,576
Registered: 12/3/04
Ravitch: New Group to Take Aim at Ed. Reform Trends
Posted: Mar 31, 2013 4:36 PM
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From Education Week [American Education's Newspaper of Record],
Wednesday, March 13, 2013, Volume 32, Issue 24, p. 4. See
News in Brief

New Group to Take Aim at Ed. Reform Trends

By Michele McNeil

Education historian Diane Ravitch, a fierce critic of current
education reform trends, has launched an advocacy organization that
will endorse political candidates who oppose high-stakes testing,
mass school closures, and what her group calls the "privatizing" of
public schools.

The Network for Public Education [See ] is meant to counter
state-level forces such as Democrats for Education Reform, Stand for
Children, and Students First-all of which promote their own vision of
education reform and support candidates for office, including
financially. That agenda backs measures such as charter schools and
teacher evaluations tied to student growth.

In a news release last week, the Network for Public Education notes
that "wealthy individuals are pouring unprecedented amounts of money
into state and local school board races, often into places where they
do not reside, to elect candidates intent on undermining and
privatizing our public schools."

For instance, advocacy organizations made big donations to school
board races this month in Los Angeles and West Sacramento, Calif.

In the release, Ms. Ravitch, a former education official in the
George H.W. Bush administration, said her new network "will give
voice to the millions of parents, educators, and other citizens who
are fed up with corporate-style reform."

The one thing the group won't do: donate money. Ms. Ravitch said in
an interview that her group will focus on branding people with the
education equivalent of the "Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval" and
directing other groups to donate money to those candidates.

She said the network will distinguish itself from other like-minded
groups such as Save Our Schools and Parents Across America.

"There are all of these disparate groups, and they're not connected,"
she said. "What we want to do is be the kind of glue and use the
social media to create a powerful national movement."
Jerry P. Becker
Dept. of Curriculum & Instruction
Southern Illinois University
625 Wham Drive
Mail Code 4610
Carbondale, IL 62901-4610
Phone: (618) 453-4241 [O]
(618) 457-8903 [H]
Fax: (618) 453-4244

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