Fwd: [Schools Matter] Children Hungry, Schools Broke: Corporate Reformers Blame Sc...
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- Subject: Fwd: [Schools Matter] Children Hungry, Schools Broke: Corporate Reformers Blame Sc...
- From: James Horn <email@example.com>
- Date: Sat, 28 Nov 2009 10:13:23 -0500
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Yesterday the Washington Post had a story of increasing hunger and
school children, realities that until last fall were largely not seen
because they were real for the invisible children that constitute the bottom
quintile of school children who have been repeatedly thrown away for
Schools throughout the Washington area are feeding an unprecedented number
of poor students as unemployment continues to rise.
One in four students in Fairfax County qualifies for free or reduced-price
meals this fall, up from one in five three years ago. In Montgomery County,
29 percent of students were deemed eligible for meal subsidies in October,
up from 26 percent in October 2007. In Prince William County, the
eligibility rate increased from 29 to 33 percent, and in Prince George's
County, from 46 to 52 percent.
As the lunchroom poverty barometer rises, schools are solidifying their role
as centers for social services.
"If basic needs are not met, children cannot learn," said Karen Thompson, a
guidance counselor at Guilford Elementary School in Sterling. "If we have
children coming to school hungry, that is our first concern. We also have to
make sure they have shoes, warm clothing. Have they slept? Do they have a
place to live?"
Although poverty rates increased only slightly in Loudoun
>in the past year, the rate at
Guilford Elementary, in a working-class
neighborhood near the Fairfax border, rose sharply, to about 68 percent,
Principal David Stewart said.
Many parents who work as housecleaners, construction workers or landscapers
have lost their jobs, or their hours have been cut. The school and the
community have responded.
Guilford officials always keep a supply of winter coats to give to children
in need. But this year, they also have dozens of pairs of shoes donated by a
At Guilford and scores of other schools in the region, churches and
charities are donating backpacks or providing boxes of food for children to
take home on Fridays so that they will have something to eat over the
weekend.. . .
And now the same capitalist charlatans who ran the national and world
economies into the ditch want control over public schools and universities.
Not only do these public institutions offer new corporate revenue streams,
but the control and brainwashing of the next generation becomes more
critical for insuring another few years of governance by multinational
corporations. Having already redirected the purpose of schooling to the
needs of the global economy, and having taken over the federal role in K12
education, the corporate reformers now seek to achieve corporate control of
school operations, themselves. And eliminating publicly-elected school
boards and teacher unions constitute Priority One in this phase.
That is why we see sleazy equity managers like Tom Van der Ark spend their
time blaming school boards and teachers for the system of privilege that has
produced income gaps unknown in this country since the Gilded Age. If there
could be a more disingenuous and transparent attempt at manipulating public
opinion, I have not seen it. From
. . . .The primary reason we have a federal law like NCLB is that school
boards (and state boards) allowed generations of chronic failure. They cut
bad employment deals and asked for more money when things didn't go well.
Teachers that could went to the suburbs. Most low income and minority kids
were getting left behind. Anyone committed to equity could see things had to
NCLB reflected a consensus that 1) measurement and transparency would help
us understand the problem, 2) that a basic template for school
accountability would ensure that things would get better for underserved
students, and 3) the federal government should play a bigger role in
ensuring equity and excellence.
There were a bunch of technical problems with the bill in 2001 and they
never got fixed. But the biggest problem is that 8 years later states and
school boards have continued to allow chronic failure--they basically
ignored the federal demands to intervene. . . .
Priceless. So now the Oligarchs led by Gates and Broad and the Waltons want
the American people to believe this bullshit, and to turn over their public
schools to be run by the same corporate crooks who have destroyed the
economy and the middle class. Don't count on it, Bill and Eli.
The closing paragraph from the WaPo
As poverty rates escalate, many school systems are also dealing with the
most severe revenue shortfalls in more than a generation. School boards are
likely to face proposals to cut teachers, social workers or counselors to
balance their budgets.
Dianna Sosa, a social worker at Hutchinson Elementary in Herndon, said the
effects of increased unemployment are clear there. More students at the
Fairfax school are being referred to her office because of non-academic
concerns, and she is meeting with more families to connect them with
emergency housing or other services. "It's a really stressful time," she
Posted By Jim Horn to Schools
11/28/2009 08:40:00 AM
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