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UPDATE: Due to a set of contemptuous replies by one individual and the user who "recommended" these replies, I added the following response at our blog.

"Cause to Save Free Public Education in Michigan, takes prudence over contemptuous attacks"

I truly appreciate ALL OTHER comments, replies whether we agree or disagree on the context of this diary, and those who choose to recommend this diary. Thank you!



The title of this blog should be rightly named "When the threat comes to your community". Really, truly on this we're not kidding. At first, it was just Detroit Public Schools. The Michigan Public School District with all of those "under performing", "under-achieving", "lack of parenting" African-American children that needed immediate assistance from the "saviors with white lab coats" in Lansing, Michigan to "fix" education.

Remember.... No really, remember well. Back in former Michigan Governor John Engler's (R) administration the experimental "takeover" of a public school system supported by local tax payers begun. Let's refresh our memories, shall we and take a trip back to 1999.

April 6, 1999 - World Socialist Web Site Article - Detroit Schools Takeover Approved by the Michigan Legislature

"Following the passage last week, by the Michigan House of Representatives, of a final version of the "school reform bill" aimed at taking over the Detroit Public School system, Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer moved quickly to remove the incumbent school board. In what one newspaper columnist described metaphorically as the "night-of-the-long-knives," the mayor demanded the resignation of the entire outgoing board last Friday, within hours of Governor John Engler's signing of the reform legislation. By the following Wednesday, members of the defunct board had vacated their offices and turned in their keys to the mayor. 

While the new hand-picked board has not yet adopted any policies, its composition confirms that Archer, Engler and the state legislature are moving to tailor the public school system to the needs of big business. 

The seven-member board includes William Beckham, the president of the business-oriented New Detroit and an adviser to former US President Jimmy Carter; Frank Fountain, vice-president of DaimlerChrysler; Pam Aguirre, CEO of Mexican Industries of Michigan, one of the largest minority-owned auto parts manufacturers; Detroit Deputy Mayor Freeman Hendrix; Dr. Glenda Price, president of Marygrove College; and Marvis Coffield, director of a non-profit social service agency called Operation Get Down who also owns a small business. 

The seventh member of the board is Arthur Ellis, the state superintendent of education and an ally of Republican Governor Engler. Ellis previously served as a head of the state Department of Commerce and president of Central Michigan University, a university which has established a series of semi-private charter schools throughout the state. Ellis's presence gives the governor veto power over the choice of a new chief executive for the school system, since the legislation provides that the CEO's selection must be unanimous."
Memories beginning to refresh now, just a bit we hope. Detroit Public Schools since 1999, the decade prior to this one of 2012, has been under one form or the other of Lansing, Michigan version of "Men (and Women) too, riding in White Lab Coats" to save the District from itself. Has this experiment worked? Well frankly not really if one were to take an sociological point of view of the "achievement results".

"Detroit children leave school prepared to enter the workforce or attend college. Education Secretary Arne Duncan has called the DPS drop-out rate “devastating” and told the Detroit Free Press in November 2010 that DPS is "arguably the worst urban school district in the country now.” 

 DPS was also arguably the worst urban school district in the country in 2002-2003 when a widely publicized Gates Foundation-funded study found the DPS graduation rate was the lowest in the country. From 2002 to 2009, the number of DPS students fell by 43.7 percent while the number of charter students (inside and outside the city) increased by 82.3 percent.  Charter school graduation rates vary widely, as can be seen for the class of 2009 in Appendix A.  

For the class of 2003, the DPS graduation rate ranged from 21.7 to 44.5 percent depending on the methodology used; for the class of 2004, the DPS graduation rate ranged from 24.9 percent to just over 60 percent. Michigan State University’s Education Policy Center found 32 percent of the DPS class of 2006 graduated in 4 years using a new, federally-mandated cohort methodology. During the same year, DPS reported a 66.8 percent graduation rate under the old methodology, Retention Rate Calculation. 

In 2007, the state of Michigan began using this cohort four-year graduation rate which incorporates three kinds of students likely to be left out in other methods: students who transfer between public schools anywhere in Michigan, students who leave school (permanently and temporarily), and students who graduate later than their original classmates. Using this cohort methodology, DPS found slow but steady progress from 2007, when 58 percent of 9th graders graduated with their class, to 2010, when 62 percent of 9th graders graduated with their class."

Wow, this is Earth shattering news! Wrong! 

Michiganders have known for years that Detroit Public Schools need a combination of funding, true educational resources, targeted learning plans for at-risk students and support for children who parents either refuse or lack the wherewithal to be involved within the K-12 educational process. Instead of solving the problems with detailed, involved and in many cases complex solutions; the "sugar-coat marketing scheme" of its' "them folks versus our perfect little community, school district, kids, name it" has worked quite effectively.

Little did the "perfect little communities" know that Detroit Public Schools, its' students, parents and resources has been the testing ground for a now two decade long "experiment" moving to the privatization of Public Education in Michigan. Now since tears of betrayal are forming in communities like Bloomfield Hills and more, these state residents as sounding warning bells sighting for an "call to arms" ready to fight "the takeover". Yet, we wonder where were these Michigan residents the last fourteen or so years? Fair question, right?

"Last night I attended a meeting at which Dave Randels, the Asst. Director of Govt. Relations & Pupil Services for Oakland County Schools (that's quite a title!) gave a presentation in which he broke down these bills and what they mean. In short, it would be devastating to the entire Michigan public school system. It's effectively a wholesale corporate takeover of the schools, with the new "statewide district" bypassing all local control, local school boards, and even the state board of education and the legislature itself, reporting directly to the Governor."
Yes, it would and the ultimate plan of this "decade plus long experiment" is rightly called the Michigan Public School Finance Act of 2013 -read on for details-.

Notice the date, 2013 as in NEXT YEAR. In the last General Election on Tuesday, November 6, 2012, Michigan's Republican Controlled State House and Senate via a process rightly called redistricting or "gerrymandering" if you will, ensured that although state voters added more Democratic seats in our state's House of Representatives, overturning the Chamber legislative body itself would not occur.

Flashback to 2010. Many state voters "stayed home" due to anger at President Barack Obama's economy at the time, rise of "The Tea Party" nations -as in more than one-, unemployment running rampant and a litany full of other excuses. Michigan voters staying home assisted in flipping the state House, Senate, Attorney General, Secretary of State and Governor's offices in Republican hands.

Then, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder (R) ran against challenger Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero (D) on his "ten point plan", calling Bernero "the angry Mayor". The next stage of this experiment worked perfectly: divide voters by race and class lines....get into office and do what WE desire. Kind of like what occurred when nearly no one with titles of elected state Republicans and/or Democratic officials, stepped into assist the "takeover" of Detroit Public Schools system in 1999.

Amazingly in Gov. Snyder's "ten point plan" he told Michigan voters -who voted for him in 2010 that is- exactly what he was going to do with Public Education in this state. Reading between the lines -not hard to do with reading comprehension skills taught in K-12 Primary school based learning- Snyder boldly informed Michigan residents he was hell bend on privatizing education in this state.

Too bad the folks in the"those folks versus our perfect little community, school district, kids, name it" areas didn't listen to Snyder's warning.

Question- Is Michigan’s system for funding K-12 and higher education reliable? Do you think the way Michigan funds education needs to be changed:

Answer from Rick Snyder-"The problem with Michigan's K-12 and higher education system isn't a lack of funds; it's that the funds aren't being used well. Michigan is among the top-spending states when it comes to education, yet our test scores consistently rank at the bottom of the pack. There's a clear disconnect between spending and results - just throwing more money at the problem won't solve anything. We need to reform our education system to make sure that programs are working and that we are getting results."
And change he did, full speed ahead after being sworn into office. On March 16, 2011, Governor Rick Snyder (R) signed into LAW Public Act #4 of 2011. Readers can partake in Independent Underground News many articles about impacts of P.A. #4 here.

Its' important to remember P.A. #4 -now repealed state law- moved Snyder, Republican State House and Senate leaders along with associated "interest groups", faster than the speed of light to the ultimate plan for "complete takeover" of public education in Michigan.

To drain Michigan School Districts of operational revenue necessary for educating its' youth, Gov. Rick Snyder signed in his first fiscal budget, an unprecedented removal of nearly $1 BILLION -with a big "B" - dollar money shift of state public school rainy day funding, giving  tax breaks to the state C & S based corporations.

"The education budget has been a hot-topic since massive cuts to state based per-pupil funding was slashed to just $300 per student by recent law. These actions were passed by the GOP controlled state House and Senate, and then quickly signed by Gov. Snyder, despite a projected $900 million dollar surplus in the School Aid Fund (Rainy Day Fund), on June 21st.  

Many legislators, school employees and community members believed education would be spared cuts in 2012 budget, with the noted surplus, but it was not. Instead, the Republican-led legislature and Gov. Snyder voted to add college and university funding to the School Aid Fund, which wasn’t the original intend of the fund. In addition, they voted and passed cuts in the amount of $470 dollar per-pupil out of K-12 funding.  

Up to 30 individuals attended the press conference to show their support for K-12 funding. Some of the participants were brought to tears during the Representatives’ statements to the media. 

“We’re here for one simple reason, we’re hear to stand up for our schools now that the K-12 budget has been signed,” said Rep. Brandon Dillon (D-Grand Rapids) at a neighborhood school in downtown Grand Rapids. “These are cuts that are going to impact classroom sizes, quality of our text books, cause layoffs and in general they’re going to diminish the quality of our children’s education.” 

The reality is, these cuts were made only so the governor could finance an 82 percent tax cut for corporations,” said Dillon. “We understand that the governor wants to attract top-notch employers to Michigan but we fundamentally don’t believe that the only way to do that is to cut taxes and to leave our schools holding the bag, trying to figure out how they’re going to balance their budget.”
The fix was against Free Public Education in Michigan, and state voters were blind as Stevie Wonder to where this "experiment" would end. 

Specifically, it would stop right at the back door of the administration building of their school district. Then came the Educational Achievement Authority or EAA into Detroit Public Schools. Its' truly sad and now downright insulting in light of soon to be purposed "Michigan Public School Finance Act of 2013" written by Oxford Foundation Co-Hort, right-wing Republican associated friend and business partner, Attorney Richard McLellan comes to light; along with 2012's state pending lame-duck legislation House Bills 6004, 5923, 6023, Senate Bill 1358, and 2011's S.B. 620.

Yet, Michigan Senate Bill 620 is NOT NEW. Look at the date of this legislation, as it states date of creation of SEPTEMBER 7, 2011, or last year. In case our readers had a case of "inquiring minds want to know" Michigan House and Senate Legislation follow in close number sequences. In other words, Michigan S.B. 620 was introduced first, way first before S.B. 1358 in an elected state Chamber session.

Michigan Senate Bill 620 was precursory legislation drafting "the experiment plan" for Detroit Public Schools Educational Achievement Authority. ROJS Radio LIVE hosts Monica RW and Autumn S. warned on our August 12, 2012 podcast that Governor Rick Snyder's EAA's plans were NOT going to stop within the Detroit Public School District. In fact, where panic is spreading like wildfire in "lesser minority, supposedly well-funded and educated" suburbia schools districts across Michigan; frankly its' probably is a bit too damn late to stop the "finalized outcome".

"The Secretary of State's rights to ask a citizenship questions to voters was vetoed by Governor Rick Snyder (R) in Johnson's lobbied for legislation within the "Safe and Fair Elective Initiative" packages, covered extensively since October 11, 2011 on ROJS News. Still, was Johnson's office to blame for Detroit voters being "frisked" at the polls or Detroit Public School district personnel for that manner? The answer is no. 

ROJS News was contacted by one of our readers regarding these reported situations. On Friday, August 10th we spoke to Steve Wasko, Communication Director of Detroit Public Schools (DPS) about the "frisking" episodes with two voters. We desired clarification on if DPS notified security personnel or contractors working of Tuesday, August 7th Michigan Primary. 

"The issues that were raised earlier this week with regards to some problems with voters attempting to access the polling site at Henry Ford High School, with regards to that, this school is not a Detroit Public School. It is not a member of the Detroit Public School System. It use to be. It now has transferred to a new district, run by the State of Michigan, called the Educational Achievement Authority," said Steve Wasko Chief Communications Officer at DPS.  

"And they would have complete responsibility for that site, including uses of the polling location. My understanding is that issue was resolved after it was raised that morning by staff at of the Educational Achievement Authority. Again, I want to be clear that has no relationship what so ever with Detroit Public Schools," Wasko confirmed. 

Once authenticated by Mr. Wasko that Henry Ford High School was no longer part of the DPS system, therefore would not hold responsibly of ensuring Michigan Educational Authority security staff or contractors were in trained poll accessibility procedures, we contacted Michigan's Educational Authority Lansing office. Our calls as of Friday, August 10th, were not returned.
In this case, neither the Detroit Public School Systems or directly Michigan Secretary of State department was where blame should have been leveled. Instead, focus and questions should have been directed to Michigan's Educational Authority; who starting September 5th unless Detroit's 11-School Board members injunction to stop this is successful, will operate 15 schools formerly a part of Detroit Public Schools system."
What's the EAA and why did a "takeover" of 15 Detroit Public Schools failed to have "them folks versus our perfect little community, school district, kids, name it" Michigan residents up in arms at that point? Not sure but, this is what the EAA did to DPS.

"Gov. Rick Snyder and Detroit Public Schools Emergency Manager Roy Roberts announced an plan to dramatically redesign public education in Michigan's lowest performing schools by including them into a new system that drives vastly more resources directly into their classrooms and offers greater autonomy to help ensure dramatic student achievement increases. 

The Education Achievement System is a new statewide school system that will operate the lowest performing 5 percent of schools in Michigan not achieving satisfactory results on a redesign plan or that are under an emergency manager. 

It is designed to provide a new, stable, financially responsible set of public schools that create the conditions, supports, tools and resources under which teachers can help students make significant academic gains. It will first apply to under-performing schools in Detroit in the 2012-2013 school year and then be expanded to cover the entire state."
The 15 "underperforming schools" taken over in this first "experimental timeline" to privatize public education in Michigan, were the following:

"Since the March 13 announcement of the first assignment of Detroit schools, the EAA of Michigan has executed on a number of efforts to engage parents, students and community leaders. 

These efforts have included Parent/Student Informational Meetings at all 15 of the initial member schools; informational sessions tied to the new “Learning Platform” as well as the creation of a multitude of materials to keep parents and students informed about the EAA of Michigan. The EAA of Michigan has also entered into various strategic alliances with various organizations since the mid-March announcement. 
The nine elementary/middle schools that are a part of the EAA include:
1. Brenda Scott Elementary/Middle 
2. Burns Elementary/Middle
3. Law Academy
4. Mary M. Bethune Elementary/Middle
5. Murphy Elementary/Middle
6. Nolan Elementary/Middle
7. Phoenix Elementary/Middle
8. Stewart Elementary/Middle
9. Trix Elementary/Middle 
The six high schools are:
1. Central Collegiate Academy
2. Denby High School
3. Ford High School
4. Mumford High School
5. Pershing High School
6. Southeastern High School"
Since initial "takeover" occurred within "the failing minority school district with parents that don't care" supposedly of Detroit Public Schools; nearly no one to cared write, report, cover, detail, scream bloody murder, explain or discuss what happened. 

Yet, there were some exceptions:

"Elder Helen Moore, leader of the Keep the Vote No Takeover Coalition, worked with a national network of public education advocates to bring the meeting together.  Moore said the network had met with the guests in Washington, D.C. and plans to return there this month. 

During the committee session, researchers, educators, Detroit Board of Education members, parents, and community advocates offered passionate, often blistering descriptions of the state of education in Detroit. 

“Not too long ago, a national group got in touch with us from Chicago after they heard about the student walk-outs at Frederick Douglass Academy and Western and Southwestern High Schools protesting the closures of their schools,” Moore said. 

“Twenty different states have joined in,” she continued. “Our assessment after a number of meetings has been that districts with Black and Brown children are being treated the same way nationally. They are being discriminated against.  Here in Detroit, our children’s resources are being stolen by charter schools, the Educational Achievement Authority (EAA), and site-based management. 

Dr. John Telford, newly appointed as interim superintendent of the Detroit Public Schools by the school board, chimed in. 

It is appalling, egregious, illegal and unconstitutional that Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, the state legislature, and the state Supreme Court have colluded to take away our schools, to take away our city.” 

Dr. Thomas Pedroni, Associate Professor of Curriculum Studies at Wayne State University, presented a history of the assault on public education in Detroit... 

“Mr. Cunningham, I have news for the coalition that is destroying our schools,” Pedroni told the federal officials. “You, Excellent Schools Detroit, Michigan Future Schools, EAA, you are the status quo. You defend what has been shown to not work; you defend what fails our kids. You see, the cities in America are talking to each other now. It may be Excellent Schools Detroit here but it’s the Academy for Urban School Leadership in Chicago. 

We’re talking to each other through our coalition. . . and we’re telling you we don’t want your failed blueprint.  .  .  .we are not going to let you do to our schools what you did to them in Chicago and Philadelphia and New Orleans and elsewhere.”
We could go on and on within this long-written factual article but, the end result is the following.

Plans to corporately privatize public education in Michigan has taken nearly two decades. In this time, both Republicans and Democrats has played this game in Michigan, when political parties felt they could reward portions of a "friends, partners and family cash benefit plan" at the expense of Children in our great state, seeking K-12 primary education.

School Districts lacking robust minorities within their "head counts" failed to care, fight or stand up when this "takeover experiment" was in Detroit, Muskegon, Benton Harbor or Inkster Public Schools Districts, just to name a few.

Famous last words of "The Chickens Have Come Home to Roost". Since your suburban school district(s) are targeted to shift tax dollars out of public education, directly into open hands of the "highest corporate bidder", will you care NOW?

Valuable Resources to Follow on the Effort to Private Education in Michigan....Bookmark This!!

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Comment Preferences

  •  No, Henny Penny, the sky is not falling (12+ / 0-)

    . . . on your public schools.  Republicans are falling on your public schools.  Sort of like:

    The Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold,
    And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold;

    I used to be Snow White. And then I drifted. - Mae West

    by CherryTheTart on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 02:45:57 AM PST

    •  The Dems haven't necessarily been much help, (8+ / 0-)

      at least on a national level. See: the canonization of Michele Rhee. But, yes, the Republicans are clearly worse and, if they have any conscience here, I'm not seeing it.

      •  Must agree. Dems not much better. n/t (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        peregrine kate

        I used to be Snow White. And then I drifted. - Mae West

        by CherryTheTart on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:15:54 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Republicans? Conscience? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:


        The GOP can't win on ideas. They can only win by lying, cheating, and stealing. So they do.

        by psnyder on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 06:25:52 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agree, we know the GOP has... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          No Conscience. Parents and children of DPS expected better from Democrats....yet received similar disappointment in most cases.

          Point being, a school district no matter in a financially-well off and/or financially-at risk community should NEVER  experience a "takeover attempt" by the "forces that be" -i.e. Lansing and in some cases local politicians of all stripes (parties affiliation), working in conjunction.

          Focus on the core issues: Improving learning plans for at-risk youth, effectively strategies dealing with parents that lack the wherewithal or internal motivation for participating in their child educational process, outside factors (home life, peers, family history) can affect how a child learns, recognizing learning disabilities in children before third grade & draft productive I.E.P.'s (Individual Educational Plans) focused on assisting the child with Learning.....

          I could go on and on but the Lansing based approach of race and class segmentation between minority and lesser minority populated school districts for decades, has really been an "experiment" leading to the full-scale privatization model Michigan residents are rightfully worried about today.

          The point is, many of these residents should have been equally worried in 1999, when Engler and company took over Detroit Public Schools.

          Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

          by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:16:19 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Former Governor Jennifer Granholm (0+ / 0-)

      Allowed for continuation of Emergency Financial Management at Detroit Public Schools with E.M. Robert Bob and a host of other "E.M." during her 8 year term.

      Former Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer a Democrat, worked proudly with John Engler in 1998-1999 for the first initial takeover of DPS.

      There are list available of other Democrats who supported a "takeover" "emergency financial manager" and/or the "Men and Women in White Lab Coats approach from Lansing, MI" to "save" DPS, Point being, nothing has been done but effectively destroying Detroit Public Schools by all of these so called "saviors", both Republican and Democrat!!

      Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

      by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:00:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I read it. I get it. But... (14+ / 0-)

    isn't there a way for you to boil this down to something folks can understand without all the history and who did what to whom?  

    The longer I live, the clearer I perceive how unmatchable a compliment one pays when he says of a man "he has the courage to utter his convictions." Mark Twain

    by Persiflage on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 03:28:26 AM PST

    •  I live in MI. (11+ / 0-)

      I'm involved in the fight to save our public school system, and I didn't have the stamina to read it all.  Not that I'm criticizing the diarist for taking the time to care.  

      If money is speech, then speech must be money.

      by dkmich on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:21:10 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I appreciated the comprehensive diary (8+ / 0-)

      Sometimes the only way people wake up and change is when the problem reaches its critical mass.

      The writer is correct - by not showing up at the polls in 2010 we let the radical right take over this state.  Until this started to affect the suburban school districts, it was only "those people" who needed to state to interfere in their "underperforming schools".

      Sadly, voters keep putting these clowns back into office.

    •  Persiflage - In some ways, to me, this diary (4+ / 0-)

      encapsulates all that is wrong with certain Democratic messaging.  A whole lot of information with facts and figures but done in such a sloppy and sprawling way that it's just not palatable.

      I totally agree with the ideas here.  I'm not saying the diarist is wrong.  But, by whittling this formless diary down to the basic points, it would get more attention. Sometimes, just giving people a whole bunch of data doesn't get through to people.  And it rarely makes enough people care.

      •  Sloppy? The truth is sloppy.... (0+ / 0-)

        and the history is not important, I guess?

        I'll agree with you on one point, it's a sloppy mess what's be done to Detroit Public Schools and other minority-populated School Districts by Lansing Politicians -Republican and Democrats- that have done NOTHING to address the problem.


        Yet, sadly its ten years plus worth of history that has lead us to this point now. Apologize if it could not be wrapped in "talking point" format but, the history is why Michigan Free Public Education model is threaten TODAY.

        "Using the cliff notes" version of why Michigan is "thisclose" to full board privatization of Public Schools, doesn't work.

        Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

        by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:37:19 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Sorry but the history is important.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The sky has been falling on Education in Michigan for over 10 years. Republicans and Democrats working in cohoots, worked on the failed experiment from 1999 and beyond to "save" D.P.S. and other minority populated school districts..."from themselves" so to speak, and failed.

      Politicians of all stripes and party affiliation in Lansing since 1999 have worked to divide public school districts on a sudo-based segmentation model (addressed in the article above). Residents have fell for this lock, stock and barrel by in many cases agreeing with a Lansing "take over" of D.P.S.  

      Meanwhile, what nearly all residents of Michigan have failed to understand is the "take over" model was not MEANT to stop at Detroit and later Benton Harbor, Muskegon, Inkster along with other high minority populated districts. Instead, the ultimate plan was FULL TAKEOVER of Free Public Education in Michigan for "for-profit Incorporated model for sale to the higher bidder" with all P.S. (Public Schools) in the state.

      This is the shorten version of what happened and the reason why Michigan's Children rights to a Free Public Education is threaten, right now.

      Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

      by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:27:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not really... (0+ / 0-)

      but feel free not to read this diary.

      Without history, what's occurring now appears as if the "for-profit corporate education model" just popped up, out of the blue in Michigan. Or in the last couple of years since Gov. Rick Snyder was elected, Governor. Nothing is further from the truth.

      Gov. Rick Snyder and his associated interests have moved this effort in fast forward mode but many politicians -Republicans and Democrats- over the years have helped this horrible effort, right along.

      Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

      by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 02:13:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I recc'd your diary because I think what you have (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        surelyujest, kayla9170

        to say is important.  I merely suggested that the length and supporting detail made it difficult to digest.  A preamble that concisely stated what has happened, the results, and why we should be concerned would have been useful to YOUR cause and to gain the attention required of others.

        I'm a big fan of the history of how and why things happen(ed)...but in this case I wasn't sure reading along why I should get into all the detail ... but I did.  

        Now, you've chosen to get all in a lather over a polite suggestion.  What does that tell you?

        The longer I live, the clearer I perceive how unmatchable a compliment one pays when he says of a man "he has the courage to utter his convictions." Mark Twain

        by Persiflage on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 05:24:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Appreciate the Recommendation.... (0+ / 0-)

          and will take prudence to the length in future diaries. Not sure what the lather comment means but either way, I'll make the first PEACE offering.

          Enjoy your evening

          Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

          by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 05:59:07 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Somewhere above you suggested (0+ / 0-)

            I needn't read your diary...because of the comment I made earlier...above all this.

            The longer I live, the clearer I perceive how unmatchable a compliment one pays when he says of a man "he has the courage to utter his convictions." Mark Twain

            by Persiflage on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 06:05:28 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  An Olive Branch has been offered (0+ / 0-)

              Feel free to accept it or not. I have to prepare my program for tomorrow. Thanks, again and have a nice evening.

              Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

              by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 06:29:07 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Emperor Snyder needs to go. n.t (5+ / 0-)

    If money is speech, then speech must be money.

    by dkmich on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:07:34 AM PST

  •  World Socialist Web Site are liars (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Too bad that's one of your first links. As soon as I see that, I stop reading.

    They are compulsive liars of the Soviet "Pravda" era. Absolute bullshit 24/7/365.

    Your diary may or may not be important, true, relevant, whatever, but when you cite to WSWS you immediately discredit yourself no matter how important your diary may be.

    •  Not that I'm disagreeing with you. (6+ / 0-)

      ...but generally, if you're going to attack a source, you need to at least briefly establish why they are liars (preferably with an example.)

    •  So we should avoid a site when the article... (0+ / 0-)

      Of mention is indeed FACTUAL due to a "Soviet Pravda Era" whatever that frankly I know nothing about. Okay...

      Damn the children, I guess. The "Soviet Pravda Era" or whatever it is, would be more important...

      Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

      by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:41:14 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's coming in Wisconsin too. (9+ / 0-)

    And, like Michigan, Wisconsin has been undermining public education in our biggest city for decades (via vouchers in our case, the "Milwaukee Parental Choice" travesty).

    I've just co-founded a parent group in Wisconsin to push back against the ALEC special needs vouchers that are going to be rammed through in Wisconsin, possibly even in the budget.  Any Wisconsin folks following this, please drop by and "like" Stop Special Needs Vouchers on Facebook!

    Sorry for the Wisconsin hi-jack here.  But this is truly all part of the same nefarious campaign.

    If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. - Bishop Desmond Tutu

    by AnnieJo on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:44:47 AM PST

    •  As an outside observer, it seems OK to me. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AnnieJo, kayla9170

      The "divide and conquer" strategy advocated by Scott Walker knows no boundaries. ALEC is everywhere hoping no one notices anywhere.

      "The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

      by Lily O Lady on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:22:40 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  from one who has been there and is there (0+ / 0-)

      As a parent of a special needs student, I ask you this question.

      When you have a child needs the following...
      - control over their work schedule
      - frequent rest breaks (which may require lying down to rest for a bit)
      - an environment with VERY low sensory stimulation (low lighting, low noise, minimal odor, minimal physical contact)
      - ergonomic work environment
      - tendency to miss many more days than state mandated maximums due to illness

      How do you propose to meet these needs in a public school setting?

      This is a serious question.  

      Frankly, I don't care if it is the top performing school in the land.  I just care about keeping on grade level and eventually making our way out of the rigid, bureaucratic (tempted to say fascist) hell of a public school system, where educational "professionals" who do not understand this disease and have no idea of the challenges we are dealing with feel that their opinions should be the law of the land.    Don't get me wrong.  Our system is great for the average child.  It fails miserable for many kids who aren't average.

      I yearn for the day that we can move into the more flexible environment of college, where we have flexible  scheduling choices, and choices of internet courses or on-site courses, etc.  The day that we get that high school diploma will be like busting out of prison in the fresh air and sunlight.   I don't understand why we cannot offer such choices to the 9-12 children.    I am convinced that it is the future of high school education.

      If public schools refuse to offer these choices, charter schools will.

      I have solved this problem by transferring my special needs daughter into a virtual charter school, where I have, by choice, NO accomodations, so that the stress of dealing with teams of know-it-all-but-really-don't educational-professional-clueless-fools is totally REMOVED from my life.  It was like a thousand pounds lifting off my shoulders.  It felt like I could fly, and my daughter says she feels the same way.

      Charter schools, virtual schools, have saved our my daughter's education.  It's not perfect.   But, if this option was not available, we would be homeschooling.  There is no other choice.  And, we have to work for a living.   Where would we find the bandwidth for yet another full-time job as homeschooling teacher?    If we have to homeschool due to my child's disability, then the public schools have failed in their legal obligation to help children with disabilities like my child.  With this charter virtual school, my daughter gets the public education she was promised, in the environment that she requires due to her disability.

      This is what some parents mean when they say "choice".   It's not really choice.  It's necessity.  It's when all the available options AREN'T WORKING AT ALL, and parents have to find SOME WAY to education their kids.

      Seriously, in complete earnest, what do you propose as a solution to this problem, other than the solution that we found?

      •  Seriously? (0+ / 0-)

        How were children with Special Needs taught before "Charter Schools?"

        The answer to this question would be, at least in Michigan, by the Intermediate Educational Public School District within a county or locality.

        So, the Intermediate School District hires Para-Professionals who work along side certified public school teachers, focus on providing education to children with special needs.

        And this model worked well for years, and frankly still does, without the For-Profit Corporate Model coming into play.

        But yes, it was "charter schools" that saved the day for children with "special needs"......


        Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

        by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:59:16 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  By homeschooling (0+ / 0-)

          That's what I hear from other parents in this situation.  We are not served by our public education system.  We have to make do on our own.

        •  No, it has not worked (0+ / 0-)
          And this model worked well for years
          No, it has not worked.   It may work for some kids who can cope with the environment and have other special needs, but the kids with problems with the learning environment are not served and are forced to drop out and do homeschooling.  

          It hasn't been working.   I'm asking, with great seriousness, how public schools can provide the environment and the flexibility in scheduling work time, that is needed for these particular children with special needs?   Just because the schools have not, so far, been able to help our kids, does not mean that it is OK to keep on not helping our kids.  


          •  I disagree.... (0+ / 0-)

            My children did not have severe special needs per say, but my daughter has a reading disability and son has ADD. With my Daughter, it was my former Second Grade Teacher years before (who she was BLESSED to have as her 2nd Grade teacher years later) who recognized the disability and encouraged me to test her. I THANK GOD for following my former teacher advice.

            Specifically, my Daughter received assistance she needed up to twelve grade (and in undergraduate education now) to succeed. Now, this was not without my deep involvement, pressure (in some cases) and research of Michigan Public Schools Policies and Procedures, ensuring my child received ALL THE SERVICES she was entitled too.

            With my Son, I had to be just as vigilant. Frankly even more so because as an African-American male, some instructors in K-12 would easily dismiss him based on symptomatic issues associated with his ADD, Race and Stature (he's a tall/big Young Man).

            The point is, you as a PARENT and TAX PAYER must remain vigilant. Know the Public School Procedures and Guidelines in your state as it pertain to Special Education. Don't be afraid to challenge "authority" when your child is being segmented based on a disability.

            Also, my biggest problem with the "segmentation model for children with disabilities in at-risk public school districts" are how they parents are taken advantage of by the lack of knowledge on how the "system" works. In many cases, this is not because these parents "don't care".

            Many times, parents are not educated about important resources on how the Public School System is responsible for providing EVERY CHILD with an equal, free and appropriate education up to the Twelve Grade (and in some cases beyond if necessary). It never entered my mind to pull my Children out of Public School and place them in a "Charter" or "Home School" environment.

            Sure, it was a fight. I struggled and was bewildered at times with SOME educators and their treatment of my Children with learning disabilities.

            Yet, in turn, I had no problem taking the debate to the next level (and up to Michigan's Department of Education in one case with my Son against one Public School District), ensuring my kids received the educational tools required.

            Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

            by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 09:03:15 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Not a problem (0+ / 0-)

              I am vigilant.

              I am aware of how the system works.

              I did go through the process.  

              Believe me.  The folks who know me would assure you that I have no trouble getting things done.

              However, the school did not HAVE a suitable environment for my child.   They want to work with her, but they don't have options for meeting the requirements that I mentioned above.  

              The closest they came up with was homebound.  But, homebound is a farce.   It's like doing school by carrier pigeon.   There was no way my daughter was going to get a high school education that way.  The school knew it.  I knew it.  The school said they could not continue.

              At the end of the day, there were no options that met the need of my child.   I believe the school would have provided it, if they had it.  But, they just don't.   Their solution is to put her right back into the environment, the bright lights, loud noise, smells, people bumping into her (that HURTS.  She can't even wear pants some days because the fabric on her legs hurts), rigid schedule.  The only accomodation was just to cut back hours a little, but they also didn't explain how she was going to get a full education with only half the school.  the half school in that environment was torture.   And, her brain still works, so there's no reason she can't do a full day's work, if her physical requirements are met.  

              At the end of the day, the school simply does not have an effective homebound program, and could not meet my daughter's physical requirements within the school.

              I went through the process, and the process failed.

              Believe me.  I sat on one side of the table, with a principal, school counselor, home bound instructor, home bound supervisor and nurse on the other side of the table, and I got what I came for -- homebound.  I am no wilting violet.  It's just that homebound was not providing an education.

              There is a point at which it becomes inefficient to try to reform the entire school system.   When there is a charter alternative that meets my child's needs, and my public school does NOT meet my child's needs, then it is not appropriate to put my own child's needs last in order to try vainly to reform a system that has failed.  At that point I vote with my feet, hoping that vote will be counted, and the need for improvement will eventually be recognized.

              There is another way to look at it, however,   My school district chose to allocate funds to pay for the charter virtual school that we are attending.    My school district DID meet my needs by making this option available.

              My school district made a good choice.  I still love my district for my more "typical" child.   I think we have a great superintendent who is fiscally responsible and did NOT have to lay off teachers in the economic downturn.   He saw a need and he filled it.   He filled it with a charter, and if that's what works, then KUDOS to him.  I'd be just as happy if my virtual school was run by the state, but either way, I needed a virtual school, I have one...

              Problem solved.  

              •  I hear the frustration. It sounds like (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                DFWmom, kayla9170

                you've been fighting the good fight for your daughter for many years.

                It also sounds to me as if her situation might be one in which the public school is, in fact, legally obligated to pay for that virtual charter, upon admitting that they cannot meet your daughter's needs and that there exists an option that CAN.

                I don't have Michigan connections for this, but I do know an attorney in Wisconsin who works on cases that sound a lot like your situation, and has been repeatedly successful in forcing school districts to pay for private placement, when indeed they are unable to meet the student's requirements.

                Here's how he described it in an article about Wisconsin's special-needs vouchers (which he strongly opposes):

                “Embedded in the law is the ability to either voluntarily or legally force school districts to pay for private schools, at significant expense,” says Spitzer-Resnick.
                I'm not a lawyer, but I think this is based on federal rather than state law.  Might yet be worth looking into for you?

                There are definitely things that can be improved in the public school system.  But in Wisconsin, the proposed special needs vouchers would make things worse for many more people than would be helped.

                If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. - Bishop Desmond Tutu

                by AnnieJo on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 01:09:11 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  private schools (0+ / 0-)

                  Private schools have the same learning environment issues as publics schools.  They still have a "school" environment, and rigid class scheduling and attendance requirements, etc.   When you miss class due to illness, or needing a break, it puts you behind, so in this environment, it is a constant game of catchup and stress makes this condition worse.   On-site schools just can't deal with kids missing class all the time, leaving class to go lie down and take a nap, etc.    I haven't found an option that solves all these problems except the virtual school.  Believe me, I've looked.    

                  I do believe that homebound programs need a major re-vamping.  Done correctly, they would probably merge into something like virtual learning with a "learning coach" provided by the district.  

                  We have private virtual schools, which I have considered, as they do allow kids to accelerate, but they are expensive, and I don't need it, because I have our virtual chater.   We might have had to pay for it out of our own pocket, if it weren't for our charter, unless we'd sued like you suggest.

                  •  If I have it correct.... (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    The Public School District is providing your family a voucher for your child to attend the privatized virtual charter school environment, right?

                    If that is the case, the district (via local tax dollars) are still paying to provide the Child with a free public education, due to circumstances beyond the Public School System control to meet conditions necessary for your Child to succeed.

                    Still this is NOT the case for every Child. Although your situation is different, I still have yet to see an need to destroy the entire free public education model to promote robustly a "for-profit corporate charter school model". Sorry!

                    But I'm glad your Child is now receiving the Educational Environment necessary to foster his or her success.

                    Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

                    by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 01:54:49 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  No, you do not have it correct (0+ / 0-)

                      We did not receive a voucher.

                      Our school district chose to participate in a statewide program to provide virtual school to students whose districts choose to participate (which is most of them).     Students in the district and apply to the charter school, and go there without paying anything.    Acceptance is unconditional, but there are a limited number of seats funded under the program, and previously enrolled students get first availability.    A separate school district is set up in our area, in this case Texas Virtual Academy, to serve students for the districts in our area which choose to participate.   There are different charters serving districts in other areas.  There's a one in Houston, for instance.   By paying to "opt in", our district makes it possible for our students to attend a virtual school at no cost, funded under our public school system.

                      This is different from a "voucher" system, because the state has a larger role in regulating the charter as a public school district, and because choices are limited.   We can't take a voucher and go to any school we choose.  We are given the option to transfer into this charter because our school district participates in this charter program.   If we choose to go to some other private school, we would have to pay for it ourselves without any assistance.  

        •  Out of sight, out of mind (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          It's easy to ignore our kids, and focus on the "typical" child.

    • THANK YOU!!! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Please HIJACK on.

      Children with special needs (and I had two children with learning disabilities during K-12) is another factor in the "segmentation" model.

      In other words....providing resources for these children is "too expensive" in comparison to "Your child" without "special needs", and to fix this we must have the for-profit incorporated educational model....."educate this children".

      Frankly, its' B.S. yet, many parents fall for it!

      Let me know if I can do anything to cross promote (for free of course) your cause. We have podcast averaging 10-15K live and archived listens nationwide per month.

      Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

      by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:52:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  kayla9170 -- off to send you a message (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        now that I've got my kiddos home from school.

        Lovely offer re cross-promotion.  We should talk, for sure!

        If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality. - Bishop Desmond Tutu

        by AnnieJo on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 02:02:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  People at the local level tend to care a lot (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    moose67, Abelia, Smoh, kayla9170

    about their schools - at least in less poverty stricken areas  -e.g., the 70 to 80% of American schools that are not "failing" (contrary to the general buzz out there, most schools in this country are not an abysmal failure).

    In more poverty stricken areas it seems people have more urgent concerns (such as surviving from day to day!) to seem to care about their public schools.  That's probably the origin of the seeming apathy mentioned in this diary.

  •  The Oxford Foundation (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dkmich, kayla9170, madhaus

    is part of the problem . . . not the solution. This is plain to see, specially if you read Diane Ravitch's personal blog

  •  Instead of criticizing the diarist for the length (13+ / 0-)

    the diary or the one link you don't like, perhaps we should be evaluating for content!

    Is s/he wrong?  Making shit up?  If not, then theses comments should be expressing something a little more akin to gratitude for the effort and unity against a common foe who means our children harm.

    •  My thoughts exactly (16+ / 0-)

      This diary took an incredible amount of time to put together an I cannot fathom why peope are actually complaining about the length of it.  It is baffling that people actually want less information about what is taking place.  I don't even live anywhere near Michigan and I found it fascinating.

      For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives, and the dream shall never die--Ted Kennedy

      by sobermom on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 05:32:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I Agree (11+ / 0-)

        And find it notable that no one has discussed the diarist's central premise, even though they took time to quibble about length, sourcing, and who to blame:

        That when this problem (noted in another recommended diary) affected only some people's children -- the children too often that nobody cares about, ever -- there was no systematic hue and cry.  It is only, as usual, when it hits their own far more privileged and homogeneous world that they suddenly give a hoot.

        Of course, it is precisely because they can't debate the central premise that they spend so much time nitpicking.  It's an unfortunately common reaction to diaries like these.

      •  Not so much the length... (4+ / 0-) the fact that it is virtually unreadable.

        (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
        Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

        by Sparhawk on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 05:51:31 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  This commenter claims to be a Left Libertarian (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Abelia, Smoh, kayla9170

          in his sig line.

          What does left libertarian mean in terms of public education at all? Cannot say for certain, but this is the lens he looks through to view the necessity of public education at all.

          The diary is long and skimmable and bookmarkable. Seems thoroughly researched.

          As a Michigander, I am concerned about the issues of the diarist. It is calling me to action.

          •  What does my political... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            soros, 2thanks

            ...orientation and potential opinion about this issue have to do with the simple fact that this diary is barely readable?

            Secondly, being a left libertarian doesn't necessarily mean anti-public-education. I just tend to be pro-cost-effective-solutions.

            (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
            Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

            by Sparhawk on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 11:01:19 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Libertarian means in just.... (0+ / 0-)

          Government is the problem, not the answer to situations faced in a society. Libertarians for the most part believe that the U.S. Department of Education should be eliminated. Libertarians generally question why the State has any authority to regulate Education.

          This is why I'm not a Libertarian.....

          My Father, RIP, was the FIRST in our family to receive a High School Diploma in the segmented South in 1959. He graduated Valedictorian of the "Colored" class at his school. Dad continued, attending undergraduate education on academic and athletic scholarships; receiving an Associate Degree and Certification by the U.S. Department of Labor as a Tool & Die Skilled Tradesman.

          One thing my Dad told me many times is that, "Education is something NO ONE can take away from you," and I believed him, until now.

          For his legacy, I received my Bachelors Degree and soon a M.B.A. to come in September 2013. My Daughter (who has a Learning Disability) will receive her Bachelor's Degree in December 2013.

          I want ALL CHILDREN, regardless of Race, Class, Financial Status, Area, Disability or Status to equality receive a FREE PUBLIC EDUCATION up to the Twelve Grade of study, and beyond if necessary.

          The question I would implore you to answer is, do you?

          Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

          by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 09:23:48 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I want all children to have a... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kayla9170, soros

   education. I am agnostic on the public/private or union/nonunion question as I'd prefer to run the numbers and go with whatever provides the best educational outcomes at the most reasonable cost to taxpayers.

            (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
            Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

            by Sparhawk on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 11:06:35 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thanks for answering the question.... (0+ / 0-)

              I don't believe that public financing (i.e. tax dollars provided by the citizenry of a locality supporting operations of a local public school district) should ever be used to support privatized for profit educational organizations, except in extreme cases (i.e. the public school district cannot accommodate the physical needs of a child).

              For situations of this nature, I only support extending financing to privatized -non-profit- organizations with a proven academic record to verify these schools must meet the educational, and physical needs of the Child.

              Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

              by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 02:04:52 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  where does this free education exist? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            I've never heard about such a thing... could you elaborate?

            To you, I'm an atheist. To God, I'm the loyal opposition.” ― Woody Allen

            by soros on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 02:05:05 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  You never heard of the right to a free public.... (0+ / 0-)

              education, up to the twelfth year of instruction? Really?

              "The Section 504 regulation requires a school district to provide a “free appropriate public education” (FAPE) to each qualified person with a disability who is in the school district’s jurisdiction, regardless of the nature or severity of the person’s disability."

              F.A.P.E. Section 504 from U.S. Dept. of Education Website

              Zone Legislative Report September 2007


              The right to a free public education is found in the various state constitutions and not in the federal constitution. Every state has a provision in its constitution, commonly called the "education article," that guarantees some form of free public education, usually through the twelfth grade.

              Not only does the federal constitution confer no right to education, it does not even explicitly empower the U.S. Congress to legislate on the subject. Most federal education legislation is therefore enacted under the "spending clause" of the Constitution, which gives Congress the authority to tax and spend for the general welfare.

              Nevertheless, once a state decides to provide an education to its children, as every state has, the provision of such education must be consistent with other federally guaranteed constitutional rights, such as the Fourteenth Amendment's right to equal protection under the law and the First Amendment's right to the free exercise of, and the non-establishment of, religion.

              Therefore, even though the U.S. Constitution does not, in the first instance, require that an education be provided, it nevertheless has had a significant effect on American education.

              Any treatment of education and constitutional rights must begin with the Fourteenth Amendment, which guarantees every citizen equal protection under the law."

              Report Link

              Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

              by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 02:23:20 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you! I appreciate this... (0+ / 0-)

        Again, without history, its' nearly impossible to understand why Michigan faces nearly end of the Free Public Education Model sadly, today!

        Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

        by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 08:01:27 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  As the author of the diaries you're referring to (6+ / 0-)

    ...I applaud you for EVERYTHING you've written, with only one quibble.

    "Now since tears of betrayal are forming in communities like Bloomfield Hills and more, these state residents as sounding warning bells sighting for an "call to arms" ready to fight "the takeover". Yet, we wonder where were these Michigan residents the last fourteen or so years?"
    Your entire diary is based on the premise that the residents of the snootier, whiter, richer districts have completely ignored the destruction of the poorer, black districts for years, and are only now giving a rat's ass when it comes to bite us in the ass.

    You're probably 100% correct about this in general.

    However, for ME, the reason that I didn't pay attention before and do now has nothing to do with where I live--it has to do with the fact that I DIDN'T HAVE A CHILD BEFORE, and now I do.

    I know that may not seem like much of an excuse, but yes, I admit it: I didn't follow K-12 educational issues very closely until I had a child. Should I have? Of course. But you know what? There's only so much time in the Goddamned day.

    I have a 6-year old son. The moment my wife and I learned we were going to have a child, you bet your ass we started paying attention to school issues--and, in fact, that was the primary reason why we moved from Berkley (a nice city with a decent-but-not-fantastic public school system) to Bloomfield Hills (known primarily FOR it's excellent public school system) in the first place. I grew up here and had the benefits of the local schools, and wanted my son to have the same experience.

    After we arrived I became heavily involved in the Bloomfield Hills High School debacle, which I wrote about, in detail, in a couple of diaries earlier this year.

    So, fine. I didn't pay attention before, and now I am. What the hell else do you want me to say?

    But don't try to suggest that I'm one of the people who shrugged it off as long as it "only affected poor black people" or whatever.

    •  It's not only that (7+ / 0-)

      Until fairly recently it really wasn't clear what the goal of the corporatization movement was. It didn't start out as a left v. right issue. (as Diane Ravitch described in her book, there were things about the school reform movement to appeal to people of all political leanings.) Even now that most people who are paying attention are concerned about the loss of local power and the funneling of local dollars to private corporations, there's still a lot of confusion about what's best for kids and schools. Many of my friends who call themselves very liberal are suspicious of teacher's unions and resentful of teacher tenure. I think headway is being made - my FB page was pretty unanimous in supporting Chicago Teachers this past year - but the messaging has been unclear.

      And I think that shows that on "our side" people are trying to be thoughtful and open-minded. We don't want to continue to support a system where kids who live on the wrong side of the street go to a crowded, unfunded school.

      The problem is (from my POV, anyway) that there are 350 billion public dollars sitting on the table and the corporatist/privatization interests (hello Michelle Rhee) are absolutely ruthless about getting their hands on it. It's hard to fight against that kind of focus with "thoughtful and open-minded."

      •  Thank you for this comment.... (0+ / 0-)

        And I believe that the clarity about what was the true mission of their "for-profit incorporated educational model" was muddled for a reason.

        Its' easier to divide the masses with an "us against them folks" model. Sadly, this has worked for centuries purity based on a sociological point of view.

        What better way to "experiment" or "test model" the ultimate plan than start in "high head count" minority populated Public School Districts. Then, those with dollar driven corporate interest, could explain the "test models" everywhere.

        I wish we would have ALL cared about what occurred within Detroit Public School District in 1999. Maybe, just maybe....we would NOT be where we're at, right now.

        Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

        by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 10:02:43 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  First, I appreciate your diary.... (0+ / 0-)

      And don't take my words as criticism of your approach to this important subject. Instead, what has been going on in Michigan has been a wake up call to everyone, regardless if one has a child in state public schools, or not.

      Specifically, the point is we ALL SHOULD BE concerned and vigilant about how Children are educated in OUR state. Why? First, economically, wages and jobs. Businesses generally decide where to build, culture and grow in states' were the educational system is STRONG, not weak.

      What's has occurred in Detroit, Benton Harbor, Inkster, Pontiac and other high "head count" minority populated School Districts in Michigan since 1999, has been a tragedy for EVERYONE. And yes, the "Chickens are coming home" now to roost" for Districts like yours.

      None of this is fair nor, right and that why WE HAVE TO CARE....always, continually and regardless to if our child attends one of "those" school districts, or not.

      One more point, my kids attended an suburban based school district(s), during their K-12 Education. I previously attended Detroit Public Schools for 3 years 5th-8th grades before my Father "relocated" me to suburbia from my Mother's custody at the time. This was in the 1980's.

      I learned first hand how Children in urbanized school districts are "segmented" by others. The comments I heard when arriving back to "suburbia" about previously attending an D.P.S. school were shocking, applauding and down right insulting.

      Little did they know, my LOVE for instrumental music came from a Caucasian Educator at Durfee Middle School on the West Side in Detroit, Michigan. He taught me how to play the violin.

      After moving back to suburbia, where they had no violins....I changed my instrument of choice to the flute. I received a partial music scholarship to attend college, based on that D.P.S. educator encouraging me to join orchestra in 5th grade.

      The moral of this long-winded story is that I care now, then and always about the education ALL CHILDREN receive in OUR STATE. My kids were EDUCATED in this state. Since for now, they both still live here....if they have Children in the upcoming Grandchildren will be educated in this state.

      We MUST remain vigilant because what impacts a child any Michigan Public Schools does impact US....all residents of this Great State....whether WE have a Child in the Public School System....or not!

      Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

      by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 09:50:36 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Don't use foul language brainwrap, it gives (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      the diarist a sad :(
      Now go back to counting your money, or whatever you rich spoiled Bloomfielders do all day.

  •  This makes me physically ill. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    2thanks, kayla9170, madhaus

    These insane bastards care nothing for our children.  They are, indeed, creating a serf class.

    Cats are better than therapy, and I'm a therapist.

    by Smoh on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 06:57:04 AM PST

  •  Yes NEARLY noone cared. I did. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brainwrap, Eclectablog

    you offer some info here I wasn't aware of kayla, but if throwing anger at those who actually did give a shit, and you can certainly include me on that list, you aren't helping, you are alienating those who were involved (including me).  And don't think for one second you are in possession of all the facts, because none of us are.
    I could, indeed, argue that I know from deeply personal experience something about this that I hope to god you yourself NEVER do.  If your child was the victim of a sex crime at the hands of a school choice student in a Michigan public school classroom, would YOU care now?

    •  First, I deeply apologize... (0+ / 0-)

      if your child was a victim of a sex crime in a Michigan Public School Classroom. That is indeed a tragedy and hopefully, this situation was property handed in our state judicial system by appropriate authorities.

      Yet, I will not apologize about caring on how ALL CHILDREN regardless of Race, Class, Area, Disability, Economic Status and Gender are educated during primary K-12 Education in our state. And yes, I'm a bit angry when any Child is left behind or a district is used as a "test model" to further a mission of expanding the "corporate based for-profit school model" in Michigan.

      The point of this article (and its' many factual previous links) is that ALL of US must come together (and I deeply hope its' not too late) and stand against the "segmentation" model of public education. This is why we're at this point, were a RIGHT for Free Public education is truly threaten in our state, now.

      Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

      by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 10:10:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  If your intention was for all of us (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        to come together you have failed to facilitate or inspire standing together with language that clearly seperates and casts blame.  When I say you are not in possession of all the facts, you seem to be far less aware of what is happening in my community and my school district than I--one of the people living in a "wealthy" (cough) suburb you seem so angry at--am of yours.  I, and many, many others, have made it our business.
        Whether intentional or not, your anger in this diary laid blame on those like the diarist whose warning call was sounded to inform people of the unexpected activity in Lansing yesterday--committee hearings which even the MASSP, the MEA, and just about every educator, leader and journalist has said was not expected to happen until February.  
        But putting aside the immediate, your diary spoke of historical groundwork and what you deem as a decade of rampant apathy.  Presumption speaks volumes.  Your wanting to protect K-12 public ed. for all MI children is admirable.  Your information is appreciated.  Your anger, blame, one sided view of the problems, ignorance of the needs or circumstances of others, and lack of willingness to accept what help and insight others have actually offered isn't.  

        •  But....its not a one sided view.... (0+ / 0-)

          History is history. You're angry (rightfully) that what occurred in Detroit Public School Districts since 1999, along with Benton Harbor, Inkster, Muskegon, Pontiac and a host of other high "head count" minority communities for YEARS, is now threatening EVERY public school district in Michigan, including yours.

          Reading the tea-leaves did you believe, purely on a economic profit based model point of view, the cause of "for-profit corporate educational system" would cease at  "less financially well off" school districts?

          Throwing on my business hat here, corporations foster were the revenue resources are based. In the case of "Michigan public schools takeover", corporate C.E.O. types knew FULL WELL if they begun this "test model" in YOUR community serious problem would exist (media attention, parents ready to remove elected officials from local, state offices, etc.).

          Eureka moment! "Let us "test model experiment" in the "poor, normally high minority populated" public school communities," they cried.

          By the way, I switched from corporate product test model matrix, to the corporate public school test model experiment going full force in Michigan since 1999, but the methodology is all the same.

          Many parents in "poor, normally high minority populated" communities like Detroit, then Benton Harbor, Pontiac, Inkster and more lacked resources, education or the know-withal on how to fight against the "takeover".

          Others believed since the "Men and Women in White Lab Coats" said they were coming to "save" their Children from those "unionized teachers with tenure who were the reason their Child wasn't learning".

          Humans dislike admitting failure. With much, SOME parents failed with doing a honest, open SELF-EVALUATION process on what ways THEY should have interactively participated in the Child's learning process. Easy scapegoats: Deny reality, blame someone else, or ignore the real issues altogether.

          Add Vouchers, Charter Schools (who are all perfect, you know....not) and a new shiny building in the mix, the first phase of this test model is working, well.

          Next, flood media resources of all the bad P.R. (Public Relations) on why Detroit, Benton Harbor, Inkster, etc... schools localities are the worse ever, due to "those people and their Children". By then, one has effectively divided the electorate based on RACE and CLASS lines.

          In suburbia, parents are secretly (many times openly) thinking, "I'm glad my kids don't have to attend school with", "those Children" in, "That District" where ,"They Can't Learn", because of "whatever".

          Basically, 14 years of this in Michigan....pitting poorer minority populated school districts, against well-financed less minority populated ones, has directly caused this problem.

          Hyoer-Profit focused C.E.O.'s explored the opening. Now they hope to expand the model across Michigan's entire public school system. End of story.

          Sometimes the truth hurts but, it's still the truth!

          Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

          by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 03:10:09 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Correction.... (0+ / 0-)

            Should have said, "Hyper-Profit focused C.E.O.'s..."

            The "p" is located near the "o" on a qwerty keyboard and I hit the wrong key....

            Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at the ROJS News blog at and our weekly radio show on Michigan Politics at

            by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 03:13:58 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well, it "appears" as though you've got this all (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              "figured out".  Good on you.  Glad you don't need "our" "concern".
              Again, presumption.
              I went to Federal Elementary School.  You know, the one that sat right under the smokestacks of the incinerator at Van Born and Inkster, a mile from the airport.  Debris from the worst plane crash in metro Detroit history landed in the trees in my backyard.  
              I was born in Detroit, and have never lived more than 20 miles outside of the city limit.  Most of my family still live in Wayne County in Dearborn, Inkster, Ecorse, Redford, the entire westside.  
              And I come from a mixed racial family.
              However, my own personal history aside, your very long and completely baffling response "said" a lot but answered little and didn't acknowledge the hostility I am trying very hard to tell you is in your language, both in your accusatory diary and strange response to me.  So before you presume to chew me out as some sort sacrificial low information, self-absorbed, spoiled suburbanite, do your fucking homework.  I know more about these issues and this state's history than most people.
              And if you think you got a line on anger kayla, I could tell you a story that would make your head spin.

              •  No offense.... (0+ / 0-)

                But you lose me when the debate comes too....

                "So before you presume to chew me out as some sort sacrificial low information, self-absorbed, spoiled suburbanite, do your fucking homework"

                Specifically, the word that began with letter "F" and ends with letter "G".

                First, I have no idea where you live or have lived. But, earlier you did write this:

                "I--one of the people living in a "wealthy" (cough) suburb you seem so angry at--am of yours.  I, and many, many others, have made it our business."

                Then you switched to this:

                "So before you presume to chew me out as some sort sacrificial low information, self-absorbed, spoiled suburbanite"

                Sorry, I'm a bit most people who would be, reading the above information.

                I don't write diaries, articles, blog post, replies or host our podcast based on seeking attention (or rec's per say... for that purpose...but if they article is rec'ed, that's a nice gesture...but this is not my purpose for writing). Since I don't know you, I won't assert an assumption on the intent of your personal demeanor.

                Yet I do express in my writing, what I feel. As a lifelong Michigander I  knowledge on the RACE and CLASS lines that do exist in this STATE. No matter how you try and deny them.

                In fact, they exist a bit in your replies (read up).

                The truth RACE and CLASS lines is why our Public School System is on the brink of Total Privatization as we speak. This is a fact, its' known and to deny the obvious is an futile effort. Yet, you have every right to do so.

                I prefer to live in reality, myself. Have a wonderful evening.

                Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

                by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:36:37 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Correction..... (0+ / 0-)

                  "I acknowledge RACE and CLASS lines that do exist in this STATE"....

                  Forgot the "ac" and eliminated the "on the"....

                  Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

                  by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:39:34 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Your entire diary and responses to me are (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  chock full of race-baiting and racial implications (read up), which is something I never thought I'd encounter here on this site.
                  Yet, this kind of hostility and presentation is exactly what I'd expect from ROJS.
                  And, just a suggestion, you might want to present a more coherent message.  

                  •  Suggestion..... (0+ / 0-)

                    Learn how to have a debate, without using foul words, then talk to me...but, I'm not sure if that's possible....

                    "chock full "

                    What the heck?

                    Bye....don't have time nor energy to STEP IN THE MUD with you.

                    Again, have a nice evening....

                    Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

                    by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:48:07 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                •  Wrong. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  First, I have no idea where you live or have lived.
                  We know each other.
                  Does that surprise you?
                  And after re-reading this diary again I am even more appalled at your flagrant hostility and outright race baiting.
                  But like I said, that is exactly what I'd expect from ROJS.
                  •  You might ROJS News... (0+ / 0-)

                    But its highly doubtful you know me.

                    Personally, I make a point of not associating with individuals who engage in foul-composed confabulation, like you did above (READ UP).

                    I've been on D.K. since 2008, will stay on D.K. and will write diaries as I wish on D.K. Learn to co-exist or avoid.

                    Either way, you stay in the MUD by yourself.

                    Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

                    by kayla9170 on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 07:54:09 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Don't flatter yourself. It is hardly news (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:

                      you do and yes, we have met.
                      The only reason it is even relevant is that I have personal and very unfortunate experience with your true character and it is showing very plainly here in this diary and your incoherent postings in these comments.
                      Stay the fuck away from me.  
                      I do know you and I will get you banned from this site if ever so much as blink my way again.  Take your race baiting mumbled bullshit back to your bizarre friends on facebook.

                      •  What the Heck? (0+ / 0-)

                        "Stay the fuck away from me."

                        Ummm....this is MY daily. LOL!!! So sad!

                        Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

                        by kayla9170 on Sat Dec 01, 2012 at 07:30:06 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Diary----Correction (0+ / 0-)

                          STILL LOL!!!

                          Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

                          by kayla9170 on Sat Dec 01, 2012 at 07:30:57 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Diary -- Correction (0+ / 0-)

                          Still this is SO, SO sad and frankly down right insane. But if the shoe fits....

                          Michigan based Citizen Journalist Owner/Podcast host at Independent Underground News at and our weekly radio show Independent Underground LIVE at

                          by kayla9170 on Sat Dec 01, 2012 at 07:33:09 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

  •  What can I say? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I voted for Virg Bernero over the Republican. I understand that most of the problem is due to poverty. I routinely make it known to my representatives that I'm opposed to idiotic education legislation. I live in one of Michigan's better school districts. My district supports school of choice and so do I. It has worked very well for us.

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