Monday, June 16, 2014

Australia:  Public school exodus starts as early as year 2

Australian parents are keen to escape the disrupted classes that are a frequent feature of State schools.  So 40% of Australian teenagers go to private High Schools

The stampede from public primary schools to private high schools when a child finishes year 6 is a tradition in parts of Sydney, but principals say the exodus now starts as early as year 2 as parents panic they will miss out on their school of choice.

Census data shows that in some of Sydney's most affluent suburbs, especially the eastern suburbs, as few as 20 per cent of students stay in the public system for high school despite booming enrolments in public primary schools.

The president of the NSW Primary Principals' Association, Geoff Scott, said the exodus from public to private schools had traditionally started in year 5 but principals were reporting it now began as early as year 2.

"It's getting younger and younger and we have parents telling our principals, 'Sorry, we love your school but if we want to get our child into a certain independent school we have been told we have to enrol them in year 3,' " Mr Scott said.

"Parents feel, wrongly we believe, that their children will have a better chance if they go to a non-government school, but this is not based on better teachers or a different curriculum because we know parents are very happy with their local government primary school."

The principal of Waverley Public, Glenn Levett, raised the issue of the exodus in a note to parents on the school's website, where he urged them not to judge the school on NAPLAN results alone, especially because so many students leave the public system before the end of primary school.

"Our year 5 group often becomes a small cohort of students as a number of students move on to opportunity classes or private schools at the end of year 4," the school’s website says. "This is common practice in the eastern suburbs as a majority of students in the area attend private high schools."

Nikki Shepherd, who has twin boys Sam and Alfie, and Carol Wade, who has a son Joseph, both enrolled their children in year 5 at Waverley College this year.

The boys, who were young for their year when they started kindergarten at Coogee Public School, are repeating year 5 at the Catholic college after doing year 5 at Coogee last year.

Ms Wade said she had been very happy with their local public school but felt her son would benefit from more routine and discipline by doing year 5 and 6 at Waverley College.

Both families would have also been unlikely to secure a spot for the boys for year 7 because they are not Catholic.

The acting director of Waverley College's junior school, Greg Harris, said the school had just been through one of the "most difficult" enrolment processes because of the demand for its year 5 intake.

Mr Harris said the school had "well over" 200 applications for 145 year 5 spots next year and one-third of those applicants were non-Catholic.

The trend is not unique to the eastern suburbs.

Inner west mother Elizabeth Luff sent her children to Annandale Public until year 4 but then sent them to St Andrews Cathedral School in Sydney's central business district.

Mrs Luff said she had always intended to send them to St Andrews for high school but thought starting them in year 5 would help them move to year 7 more easily.


This Day in Liberal Judicial Activism—June 14

1985—In Jenkins v. Missouri, federal district judge Russell G. Clark launches his desegregation plan for the Kansas City (Missouri) school district—a plan that will become (according to the description embraced by Chief Justice Rehnquist) the “most ambitious and expensive remedial program in the history of school desegregation.” Over the next twelve years, Clark will (as this report summarizes it) order the state of Missouri and the school district to spend nearly two billion dollars for “higher teachers’ salaries, 15 new schools, and such amenities as an Olympic-sized swimming pool with an underwater viewing room, television and animation studios, a robotics lab, a 25-acre wildlife sanctuary, a zoo, a model United Nations with simultaneous translation capability, and field trips to Mexico and Senegal.”

The results will, however, prove dismal: “Test scores did not rise; the black-white gap did not diminish; and there was less, not greater, integration.”


The Common Core War on Mr. Gradgrind

Here’s a paragraph from a long, not very interesting article in the NYT about a 9-year-old Haitian boy’s struggles with not flunking out of of New York schools:

"The Common Core, the most significant change to American public education in a generation, was hailed by the Obama administration as a way of lifting achievement at low-performing schools. After decades of rote learning, children would become nimble thinkers equipped for the modern age, capable of unraveling improper fractions and drawing connections between Lincoln and Pericles."

“After decades of rote learning …”

Which decades? The 1810s to 1840s? Is Mr. Gradgrind still the most influential educational philosopher of our day?

This reflects a general pattern: liberals have a hard time remembering that they’ve been in charge of a lot of things, such as education and race, for decades, even generations now.


(Mr Gradgrind is mentioned in the sidebar here)

FBI Raids 19 Charter Schools: Why?

(Hint: They’re Run By A Muslim Sect)

An initially puzzling article from the Chicago Sun-Times:

"FBI raids last week targeting Concept Schools included the charter-school operator’s Des Plaines headquarters and a school in Rogers Park.

FBI agents flashed their badges and entered after normal business hours on June 4 at Concept’s offices at 2250 E. Devon Ave. in Des Plaines, Kesha Dunn, an administrator for the O’Hare Lake Office Park that includes the chain’s headquarters, said Thursday.

The same day, agents with a search warrant visited Concept’s Chicago Math and Science Academy at 7212 N. Clark St. in Rogers Park.

“We have no idea” what they were looking for, said Irene Bermudez, a spokeswoman for the school, known as CMSA. “Of course, we cooperated. They were incredibly polite — not like in the movies. We’re conducting business as usual.”

A special agent in the Cleveland FBI office that’s leading the probe said earlier this week that the raids at 19 Concept campuses — in Illinois, Indiana and Ohio — were part of an investigation of an “ongoing white-collar crime matter” but would give no details and would not identify the schools.

FBI agents also sought records from Quest Charter Academy, a Concept school in Peoria, according to administrators of the school. They said the federal agents “disclosed they were searching for information on a federal program called E-Rate,” which provides funding for schools for telecommunications and Internet access.

“The officials also identified certain external individuals/entities in which they were interested,” according to a written statement from the Quest officials. …"

CMSA gets about 92 percent of its $6 million annual budget from taxpayers, most of that through per-pupil funding from CPS.
A reader points out that if you go to the Concept charter schools website, you can read:

"Back in 1999, a small group of educators, engineers and academicians founded Horizon Science Academy Cleveland and Horizon Science Academy Columbus in Ohio. The group, which included Turkish American educators, developed what has evolved into a proven successful school design that Concept implements in all of its schools today. Part of this visionary team was our current CEO, Sedat Duman, and Vice President, Salim Ucan."

In other words, these are Gulenist charter schools under the leadership of Imam Gulen in exile in the Poconos, whom I wrote about in Taki’s Magazine back on New Year’s Day. The Turkish cult is the biggest operator of charter schools in America, taking in over a half billion dollars per year of American taxpayer money.

It would be interesting to know whether the CIA is mad at the FBI for raiding the Gulen cult’s funding sources? Presumably, Imam Gulen is in America for roughly the same reason the Tsarnaev family was in America: Deep Staters like Graham Fuller see Gulen and the Bomb Brothers’ Uncle Ruslan as potential Major Players back home in the Islamic world. But wouldn’t it be better for the CIA to just give Imam Gulen money out of its own budget rather than have Gulen skim it off the education of American children?


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