Saturday, July 20, 2019

Ravitch: Leaks Reveal How Billionaires Shaped Hillary’s Education Agenda

Ravitch links to great article by Jake Jacobs. I know a number of teachers who could not pull the trigger for Hillary due to anger at Democrats for supporting ed deform. If the Dem party waffles on charters and testing and blaming teachers, I bet the unions will still endorse people like Biden whose connection to horrible Obama ed policies hasn't been raised seriously yet. I want to see him defend Race to the Top "let's blame teachers and their unions." This time faced with Trump they may hold their noses but the lack of enthusiasm will help Trump. Still, until recently even the left of the party were weak on education though Bernie seems to have moved the most.
This is an article you must read in full. You might even want to read the underlying document to understand how fully the Democratic Party sold out to the billionaires who oppose public schools.... Diane Ravitch
Diane Ravitch watchers - and I have been one since her conversion to rational education policy about a dozen years ago -- would see her evolution from cautious support for the Democratic center towards real reform policies -- on issues like testing and charters and so many others. But she has also taken on Randi and the unions and here she goes after the Democratic Party.


Leaks Reveal How Billionaires Shaped Hillary’s Education Agenda

 

 

Alternet published an expose of documents from Hillary’s 2016 campaign that reveal the names of the billionaires who shaped her education agenda. The documents were leaked by Wikileaks.
The education portion of the document runs 66 pages, mostly concentrated on K-12 policy, and captures specific input from billionaire donors looking to overhaul and privatize public education.
You will recognize the names: one is Laurene Powell Jobs, widow of Steve.
One of the most connected “thought leaders” discussed is Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs, and the head of the Emerson Collective, a prominent education reform advocacy group. Powell Jobs who has been close with the Clintons since the late '90s, also sat with Betsy DeVos on the board of Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence in Education. She set up billionaire “roundtables” with Clinton’s campaign advisors through 2015 while donating millions to Priorities USA, Clinton’s main PAC.
Another is Bruce Reed, who had been Biden’s chief of staff but was then president of the Broad Foundation. Reed pointed to New Orleans as an amazing success story, where the public schools were replaced by charter schools, the union was crushed, and the teachers were fired and replaced mostly by TFA.
Notes taken by Clinton aide Ann O’Leary were made in interviews with Powell Jobs and Bruce Reed, President of The Broad Foundation (and former chief of staff to Joe Biden). According to the notes, the “experts” were calling for new federal controls, more for-profit companies and more technology in public schools — but first on the menu was a bold remake of the teaching “profession.”
(Ann O’Leary is now Gavin Newsom’s chief of staff in California.)
Imagine: The billionaires and policy wonks had prescriptions for remaking the teaching profession, even though none had ever been a teacher.
But they did more than talk. On June 20, 2015, O'Leary sent Podesta an email revealing the campaign adopted two of Powell Jobs' suggestions, including "infusing best ideas from charter schools into our traditional public schools.” When Clinton announced this policy in a speech to teachers, however, it was the one line that drew boos.
“Donors want to hear where she stands” John Petry, a founder of both Democrats for Education Reform (DFER) and Success Academy, New York’s largest network of charter schools, told the New York Times.  Petry was explicit, declaring that he and his billionaire associates would instead put money into congressional, state and local races, behind candidates who favored a “more businesslike approach” to education, and tying teacher tenure to standardized test scores.
Clinton’s advisors warned her that wealthy donors like Petry, Whitney Tilson, or Eli Broad could walk if she didn’t support charter schools. Broad would indeed threaten to withhold funding from Clinton when she criticized charter schools for excluding difficult students. John Podesta and Ann O’Leary would publicly correct Clinton, reaffirming her commitment to charters.
This is an article you must read in full. You might even want to read the underlying document to understand how fully the Democratic Party sold out to the billionaires who oppose public schools.
Also see Diane's:

Tim Slekar Interviews Carol Burris about Charter Scandals

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