Friday, May 07, 2010

That Old Detroit Perfume

Nancy Flanagan writes about Detroit, lay-offs, and Teach for America on her blog at Education Week.

Scene: Last fall, at the MI Association of Public School Academies conference. A panel featuring an array of high-profile leadership figures in Detroit is asked about the most effective strategies for fixing schools in Detroit. Surprisingly, nobody mentions more charters. One of the panelists suggests that Teach for America would make a big difference. A former corps member herself, she refers to TFA as the Peace Corps of Teaching.

Q from the audience: Wow, that sounds great! What special training do TFA members get before they come to Detroit? Special classes for working in tough urban districts? Do they student teach here first?

Panelist: Ummm. Well, there's this five-week summer seminar called Institute that's, like, intense. But mostly, they're graduates of top colleges who have to compete to get into the program. They're the best and the brightest!

Sitting at a table with several DPS NBCTs and a Milken winner, I hear one mutter something about also being the cheapest. And--in the end--it is about money, more or less.

Read the whole thing here.

1 comment:

Michael Moore said...

On Friday in a previously prepared decision after hearing arguments about the constitutionality of Georgia's politically appointed fast track Charter approval board, Wendy Sloob said she did not find the board unconstitutional. Curiously, the board is using a 30 year old mandate that the state can set up "special" schools. Back in the day before charters, this meant "special" as in schools for blind, deaf, special ed and so on. The judge now thinks that this should also mean any gated community as well. The decision will be appealed but this decision could lead the way for a new resegregation. I can see developers opening new developments with their own charter school in the gated community...especially in developing areas with schools that have bused minorities to the local school. For urban areas this could spell disaster for public education.