Did Arne Duncan Run The Chicago Public Schools–Or Did he Run Them Into the Ground?

Arne Duncan is also on Heloise’s list of bad picks from The Obama.  I have a personal bone of contention when I talk to other CPS teachers who tell me that Duncan is simply NOT legally qualified to evaluate a classroom teacher!  That means he cannot walk into a classroom and fill out legal papers that say that this is what this teacher is about in this particular classroom/discipline.  But despite that missing in his credentials he has fired teachers whole cloth, and closed schools where black and browns are the huge majority.  If you close more schools your good numbers will naturally go up, do the math.  He’s got an ax to grind but does he have real solutions to add to education other than fixing the NCLB laws?

What? That’s right he has no education education and is not qualified to evaluate a qualified classroom teacher.

He has closed dozens of CPS in favor of you guessed it–Charter Schools. The darling of Republicans. His bio is shocking. When teachers asked to see his vitae they were stonewalled and never saw it. Here is a glowing bio that just tells you he climbed the ladder on the back of Mayor Dailey. http://www.cps.k12.il.us/AboutCPS/people/Duncan/duncan.html

That’s all sweetness and light but he has detractors too

“To make him secretary of education is one of the biggest mistakes Obama has made,” said Johnny Holmes, an advocate trainer for the Chicago group Parents United for Responsible Education. “He is not an educator. He is a person who went to school.”

Duncan’s name surfaced repeatedly at an Obama post-election gathering last Sunday of supporters in Chicago’s South Side, where the president-elect worked as a community organizer and where his wife, Michelle, grew up. Education was the most discussed topic at the gathering. At the time Duncan was just rumored as Obama’s choice.  from http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1208/16639.html

“This is not a time to play homeboy favorite,” one attendee said. “That would be the first big mistake the president-elect would make.”

These are the comments made, mind you before he was selected. Obama was over the moon about this man’s credentials to do what? I think he has fine sycophant credentials. Another Harvard egg head does not a secretary of education make. But wait a minute Bush did the same damn thing: picked a black man from Houston Paige to serve as SOE. It was a big mistake too, and he did not last long.

Here’s why teachers HATE Duncan

He has also backed paying kids for good grades, and a gay-friendly school environment. Obama said he was impressed that Duncan has championed charter schools, even when it wasn’t popular, adding that he shared with Duncan a deep pragmatism.

Charter schools are campus killers. They kill out public schools that are far better than any charter school I’ve ever seen in Texas.  The corporate model of school is wrong headed and won’t work. Public school teachers are better than private/Catholic school teachers and far superior to the Charter school model.

From Truthout http://www.truthout.org/121708R

Barack Obama’s selection of Arne Duncan for secretary of education does not bode well either for the political direction of his administration nor for the future of public education. Obama’s call for change falls flat with this appointment, not only because Duncan largely defines schools within a market-based and penal model of pedagogy, but also because he does not have the slightest understanding of schools as something other than adjuncts of the corporation at best or the prison at worse….vastly expanded draconian student expulsions, instituted sweeping surveillance practices, advocated a growing police presence in the schools, arbitrarily shut down entire schools and fired entire school staffs. A recent report, “Education on Lockdown..”

Listen we’ve got the goods on Arne and it ain’t good, it’s ugly. I too believe in toughness on truants and kids who just want to disrupt education process. But that won’t get kids educated. The whole model has to incorporate venues that give students stuff that they can succeed at. Obviously for poor black and brown kids succeeding at acting or being good is just not one of them. It is a way to exclude them each and every time.

Arne Duncan is in the dungeon as far as REAL educators are concerned. We don’t like what we see. It looks and smells like cronyism. Too bad Obama, we were expecting better.



About heloise8

Meaning of "trough" -- Trough is the bottom of a transverse wave. And generically means a low point or a place to fill. Venus is related to this meaning. Veins are to be filled, and venusian people are loving. The left is more venusian than the right, hence The Trough--where Heloise helps the great and the small. Heloise the politico from Blogcritics.org. Physics preacher, blogger, gardener, beach lover, book lover, writer, author.

Posted on February 3, 2009, in Fiddler On The Roots, President Obama and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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