Strike March 4th To Transform Education

Teacher and Two Students by Chalk Board in a Classroom ClipartWe’ll Strike March 4th!

How About You?

Educate! Agitate! Organize Freedom Schools on March 4th’s School Strike!

“If any question why we died, Tell them, because our fathers lied.” Kipling

On the Little Rouge School Front This Week:

DPS Teachers Sue Union and Boss: “Washington claims the loan violates Michigan’s Payment of Wages and Fringe Benefits Act, which forbids an employer from demanding a gift from an employee as a condition of employment. “Bobb does not have the right to extort loans from district employees, and the DFT does not have the right to authorize Bobb to waive the minimum protections of the law,” Washington said.–union-over-contract

The Rouge Forum News Latest Edition is Now Available At:

The Call For Papers for the Next Edition of the Rouge Forum News:

Teaching Resources on the History of Haiti:

Martin Luther King Speech: Vietnam, A Time to Break the Silence:

A Surprising List From the CIA: Nations’ Percentage Education Expenditures per GDP (US is 57th):

Chicago Trib Discovers What Substance News Reported for Years: The Duncan Miracle was a Fraud: “ Scores from the elementary schools created under Renaissance 2010 are nearly identical to the city average, and scores at the remade high schools are below the already abysmal city average, the analysis found. The moribund test scores follow other less than enthusiastic findings about Renaissance 2010 — that displaced students ended up mostly in other low-performing schools and that mass closings led to youth violence as rival gang members ended up in the same classrooms. Together, they suggest the initiative hasn’t lived up to its promise by this, its target year.”,0,3877012.story

Stephen Krashen on the LEARN Act: “I do not support the LEARN Act. As described in the Senate Bill, the LEARN Act is Reading First expanded to all levels. It is Reading First on steroids.”

Alfie, “Have They Lost Their Minds?” : “ If you read the FAQ page on the common core standards website, don’t bother looking for words like “exploration,” “intrinsic motivation,” “developmentally appropriate,” or “democracy.”  Instead, the very first sentence contains the phrase “success in the global economy,” followed immediately by “America’s competitive edge.”
If these bright new digitally enhanced national standards are more economic than educational in their inspiration, more about winning than learning, devoted more to serving the interests of business than to meeting the needs of kids, then we’ve merely painted a 21st-century façade on a hoary, dreary model of school as employee training.  Anyone who recoils from that vision should be doing everything possible to resist a proposal for national standards that embodies it.

Grassroots Education Movement in NYC Protest Jan 21:
“We are picketing Bloomberg’s residence because he is in charge of these wrongful closings. We need to bring our opposition to his doorstep.”

Randi Weingarten (AFT) Proposes to Abolish Tenure
(as in Detroit):

Joan Roelofs Analysis of the Relationship of Schools and the Military
(Click under pages, it’s several pdf files well worth the candle):

AFL-CIO Goons Open a College: “the online college would charge about $200 a credit, competitive with community colleges and far cheaper than most four-year colleges and for-profit schools.”

The Perpetual Wars and Booming Inequality Front:

On the Ruinous Debt: “When a nation’s debt exceeds 60 percent of its GDP, its growth rate slows precipitously, the study found. When that ratio exceeds 90 percent, nations’ economies barely grow, and can even contract.”
(“Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.” Wilkins Micawber). The U.S. national debt is at roughly 84 percent of the country’s GDP, and it’s projected to cross the authors’ 90-percent threshold late this year or early next year.
The implication is stark: The authors don’t say that the U.S. economy can’t grow briskly despite even higher debt, but if it does, it would be an outlier in roughly 200 years of economic statistics.

Brother Can You Spare a Job? CSMonitor on Endless Unemployment
: “in the December unemployment report, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said the number of people out of work for 27 weeks or more hit 6.1 million Americans, or 40 percent of all 15.3 million jobless. This is the most since 1948, when the data was first recorded, according to the Department of Labor. On average, it now takes 20.5 weeks to find a new job – double the amount of time in the 1982-83 recession.”

Honest Graft, Per George Washington Plunkett
: “Obama Received $20 Million from Healthcare Industry in 2008 Campaign. Almost three times the amount given to McCain”

Union Bosses Sell-Out on Health Care Tax:
“While politically powerful labor leaders support the plan — which Obama considers crucial to controlling healthcare costs — rank-and-file workers now must be convinced that it is not a betrayal of Obama’s campaign promise to oppose any new taxes on their health benefits.”,0,7559784.story

Wall Street Bonuses to Exceed $145 Billion
(compare to the meager $100 million in Haiti aid from the entire USA): “Major U.S. banks and securities firms are on pace to pay their people about $145 billion for 2009, a record sum that indicates how compensation is climbing despite fury over Wall Street’s pay culture.An analysis by The Wall Street Journal shows that executives, traders, investment bankers, money managers and others at 38 top financial companies can expect to earn nearly 18% more than they did in 2008—and slightly more than in the record year of 2007. The conclusions are based on an examination of securities filings for the first nine months of 2009 and revenue estimates through year-end.”

Come Play on My Yemen Web Says OBL:
“”Any association with the (Yemeni) regime will only confirm al Qaida’s narrative, which is that America is only interested in maintaining corrupt and despotic rulers and is not interested in the fate of Arabs and Muslims,” warned Bernard Haykel, a Princeton University professor.”

Cost of War Update: “These new appropriations bring total war-related spending for Iraq to $747.3 billion and for Afghanistan to $299 billion, with total war costs of $1.05 trillion.”

California Credit Rating Collapses:
“often translate into higher borrowing costs. The latest downgrade leaves California two notches below Illinois, the next lowest among the 50 states, said S&P analyst Gabriel Petek.”

The US Produced Tragedy of Haiti, Again: “ It may startle news-hungry Americans to learn that these conditions the American media correctly attributes to magnifying the impact of this tremendous disaster were largely the product of American policies and an American-led development model.”

Escobar on Yeman:
“The Strait of Bab el-Mandab between Yemen, Djibouti and Eritrea is a key strategic oil chokepoint between the Horn of Africa and the Middle East, linking the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean, through which flows at least 3.5 million barrels of oil a day towards the US, Europe and Asia.”

Thanks to Joel S., AMG, EWR, Nancye, Shelly, Peter, Doug, Connie, Kathy and Kathie, Sarah and Bill, MM, Bob, TLS, Gerry, Sharon A, Dave, Arturo, Dan, Jackie, Marisol, Sandy, Geno, Pat, Candace, Ruth, Lisa, Sherry, Marc, the Susans and Jack.

Good Luck to us, every one, r

3 Responses to “Strike March 4th To Transform Education”

  1. Update from Detroit. The following account describes the Removal of DFT President Keith Johnson by the members present at the Jan 14 general membership meeting.

    DFT members voted overwhelmingly tonight to relieve Keith Johnson from his duties as DFT President until a recall vote is taken at the February 11th membership meeting. The membership also voted for the DFT to join the lawsuit against the $250 TIP “loan”, and urge all members to immediately file State of Michigan Employment Wage Complaint Forms.

    Early in the meeting, Johnson declared all efforts to recall him or support the lawsuit “out of order,” in spite of a clear majority vote that these questions be placed on the meeting’s agenda. When members refused to allow him to continue the meeting undemocratically, he walked out of the room, later returning to try to adjourn the meeting. Refusing to adjourn, the members passed three motions: (1) supporting the lawsuit against the $250 TIP; (2) setting the recall vote for the February 11th General Membership Meeting; and (3) relieving Johnson of “his duties and obligations as DFT President pending the recall vote.”

    DFT members are determined that the question of Keith Johnson’s recall be decided by democratic membership vote and in accordance with the DFT Constitution

  2. Paul A. Moore says:

    The Super Bowl is back in Miami!

    The Indianapolis Colts are back in the Super Bowl.

    The CBS Corporation broadcast the Colts’ 29-17 victory over the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XLI from then Dolphins’ Stadium. CBS cameras will be trained this time on a Colts vs. New Orleans Saints match up in Super Bowl XLIV from the same stadium, now renamed for the Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada. The game is described with Roman numerals to reflect the grandeur and spectacle of it. The Roman Empire had nothing on the NFL.

    Family and friends of Rod K. Williams say he wanted to play football someday. But Rod was shot and killed two days before the last Super Bowl in Miami. His corpse was wrapped in plastic garbage bags and left in a Little Haiti-area dumpster. The body decomposed in the shadow of the stadium while the game was played. Five days later the smell attracted attention to the dumpster and the body of Rod K. Williams was finally discovered. No one had reported the 14-year-old boy missing.

    An estimated one billion people kept track of the score of Super Bowl XLI on television or radio. Tony Dungy’s charges beat Lovie Smith’s Bears to claim the Lombardi Trophy. Dungy was lauded after the victory as the first African-American head coach to win a Super Bowl. While Peyton Manning was named the game’s Most Valuable Player, many of the “skill players” on both teams were Black men. They made spectacular plays that shook the stadium. The Bears’ Devin Hester returned the opening kick-off 92-yards for a touchdown.

    Three young Black men who survived Rod K. Williams were probably watching Hester’s electrifying runback. They all played football well enough to dream. Their minds likely wandered to the kind of fame and adoration and glory and respect for themselves one day. And where else had they ever seen such effusive praise for African-American men not much older than them?

    Genarlow Wilson

    If the inmates at Georgia’s Burruss Correctional Training Institute had television privileges, then prisoner #1187055 likely watched Super Bowl XLI. He had played football with some distinction at Douglas County High School. He was the Homecoming King there too. But after a New Years Eve party to bring in 2004, 17-year-old senior Genarlow Wilson, was arrested and charged with sexual crimes. At trial he escaped rape charges but the jury forewoman wept as she read the guilty verdict for aggravated child abuse. His “child” victim had been a 15-year-old female high school classmate.

    455 men have been executed for the crime of rape in U.S. history. 405 were Black.

    Draconian mandatory sentencing guidelines condemned Genarlow Wilson to ten years behind bars in 2005. The State offered a plea bargain after the verdict. He could receive a reduced sentence if he registered as a “sex offender” for life. Under those terms he would have been forbidden contact with his 8-year-old sister until she came of age. He rejected the deal saying, “It’s all about doing what’s right. And what’s right is right, and what’s wrong is wrong. And I’m just standing up for what I believe in.” The prison sentence dashed the hopes of Ivy League schools Columbia and Brown and their football programs for Genarlow Wilson. But it fired a world-wide movement for justice that blocked out racism’s defenses. Genarlow Wilson ran to freedom’s daylight and the arms of his family on October 26, 2007.

    So Genarlow Wilson will watch, or not watch, Super Bowl XLIV as a free 23-year-old man. Maybe he will watch the game at his mother’s home next to his little sister. Then again maybe he’ll watch the game in Atlanta. He’s a “Morehouse man” now. Morehouse College, the iconic institution that helped mold the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, is where he studies history, education and sociology. “Genarlow Wilson is representative of many of our young black men who must overcome incredible obstacles before finding a place — like Morehouse — where they are valued, mentored and given the opportunity to reach their full potential,” said Morehouse President Dr. Robert M. Franklin.

    Myron Rolle

    As he lived alongside Super Bowl XLI, Myron Rolle was basking in the glow of a successful season at Florida State University. It is rare for a first year player to start for Bobby Bowden’s football powerhouse. Myron Rolle had done it. So advanced academically he enrolled at FSU as a sophomore. His success came as no surprise to the people back home in Princeton, New Jersey. They had watched the teenager excel in every facet of life from school and community leadership to the arts and from the classroom to the playing fields. His two-sport athletic exploits earned him “#1 Athlete in the Nation” designation from and his football prowess saw him named “#1 Overall Prospect in the Nation” by and The Sporting News.

    The recruiting battle over Myron Rolle was intense. Football programs from Miami to Michigan to Oklahoma to USC pulled out all the stops. Tens of thousands of dollars were spent around the country to curry favor with him. After all young men like Myron Rolle could mean TV time and a BCS Bowl birth and millions of dollars to a university. Institutions of higher learning are under tremendous pressure to fund their educational mission. The University of Florida alone must find $7 million each year now just to pay Urban Meyer and Billy Donovan, two of their more renowned professors of sports technology.

    One day when Myron Rolle was a senior in high school he got a cell phone text message. Florida Governor Jeb Bush wondered if he could hangout with the young man on his next visit to Tallahassee. The text message might seem contradictory until the importance of FSU football to the former governor is taken into account. After all, Jeb Bush engineered the demise of all affirmative action programs in Florida’s colleges and universities and drove minority enrollment to modern record lows. Jeb Bush fashioned a standardized test into a weapon. He dropped the FCAT like a cluster bomb on tens of thousands of 9 and 10-year-old Black children, nipping their potential self-confidence in the cradle. He lobbed it like a grenade into inner-city high schools and smashed the hopes of a thousand Myron Rolles. They got a piece of toilet paper called a certificate of completion rather than a text message. Then again, none of them was 6’2” and ran the 40-yard-dash in 4.53 seconds like the governor’s young friend.

    Myron Rolle returned from Oxford University to play in the Senior Bowl last month. Going into Super Bowl XLIV he is a Rhodes Scholar, the first major-college football player of his generation to win what is considered the world’s most prestigious postgraduate academic scholarship. He plans to play on a Super Bowl winning team some day. He also plans to be a doctor and open a clinic for the indigent in the Bahamas. His pal in Tallahassee, Jeb Bush, is now the former governor of Florida and a former member of the board of Lehman Brothers. While still governor Bush put Coleman Stipanovich in charge of making decisions for the multi-billion dollar Local Government Investment Pool and the Florida Retirement System.

    The now resigned Stipanovich made $1.5 billion in bad investments, $842 million of them purchased through now bankrupt Lehman Brothers. The pension fund now holds $756 million in worthless paper related to the housing market meltdown, almost 8% of its cash holdings. The state’s short-term investment fund is faced with similar losses. Jeb Bush won’t be losing any sleep over it though because the vulnerability has been dumped on Florida’s 1.1 million current and retired state workers, hundreds of school districts and local governments, the state-created Citizens Property Insurance, and the state treasury.

    Darnarius Green

    Around the time of Super Bowl XLI Darnarius Green met Miramar High School head football coach Damon Cogdell. He began participating in Miramar’s spring practices, traveling each day from his home school to the one across the county line. He was a good enough football prospect to be recruited.

    Although he was only 16-years-old Darnarius had already been arrested four times on gun related charges. President Bush and the Congress allowed the ban on the sale of assault weapons to expire in September 2004 and they were easy to come by. At most parties of the day young men like Darnarius would pose for pictures brandishing guns and later post them on mySpace pages. In the three years prior to Super Bowl XLI scores of children and youth of color had perished violently in South Florida, the victims of such weapons. In 2007 the hometown of the Chicago Bears recorded 31 murdered children during the school year. Arne Duncan, then-CEO of public schools, expressed disappointment. “If that happened to one of Chicago’s wealthiest suburbs — and God forbid it ever did — if it was a child being shot dead every two weeks in Hinsdale or Winnetka or Barrington, do you think the status quo would remain? There’s no way it would,” he said.

    When Darnarius Green left his home one night he asked his little brother to pray for him. He got into a van with others and drove away. Ironically, Coach Cogdell was driving by Opa-Locka’s Bunche Park moments after Darnarius was found there. The Miami Herald reported that according to police, “It was unclear if that is where he had been shot or where his body had been dumped.”

    The Damon Cogdell coached Miramar High Patriots made an historic run to the school’s first ever football State Championship this season. The team will be honored as part of Super Bowl XLIV festivities. Chicago recorded a new record number of school-aged children killed, including the brutal beating death of 16-year-old honor student Derrion Albert on the sidewalk outside his school, Christian Fenger Academy High.

    The year before Super Bowl XLI Hurricane Katrina devastated the city of New Orleans, killing an estimated 1,600. Over 700 residents are still unaccounted for. Most of the lost were without the means to escape. Those who did leave are scattered across the country in a Diaspora that still endures. In a very real sense the New Orleans Saints will play hard in Super Bowl XLIV to heal the city. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan was recently quoted as saying Hurricane Katrina was “the best thing that happened to the education system in New Orleans…”

    Paul A. Moore
    A Miami Public School Teacher
    Reporting from Super Bowl XLI to Super Bowl XLIV

  3. […] Check Out Miami’s Paul Moore on the Superbowl: […]