A reader writes in response to an earlier post about Ohio charters:
This is sooooooo true. One charter Academy in Toledo is a good example of this. It is run out of Lansing MI and is housed in a closed Catholic school building. There are little people cutouts hanging from a chart high in every classroom. Most are red. Red denotes did not pass the test. Yellow almost passed. Green passed. In the classroom I saw, the math people were all red. For reading, there were three yellow and one green; the rest were red. I think this was supposed to motivate the students, but it didn’t. The children stood at the beginning of the day and recited the school motto, which was about doing your best at all times. It sounded impressive. Once the day started, there was total chaos. Little to no learning happened. And no one seemed to care.
My niece taught at a charter in Cleveland for a year. Money was taken out of her paycheck for medical insurance, and when she needed medical care for a pregnancy, she found out that money was never given to the insurance company. When this was investigated, it was found that the head of this charter had had another charter shut down a year earlier. Yet he was allowed to open a second one. When a legislator was asked about this, his answer was that there was nothing that could be done. Really? If it were public rather than charter, a lot would have been done.
Ohio’s education system has gone to hell in a hand basket. Since our governor’s first unethical plan of action failed- SB5- he wrote things into his budget bill. Teachers are being evaluated according to student test scores and 15 minute walk-throughs, as a form of supervisor observations. They are scored in one of four categories, with only those in the top category getting any kind of a raise. Teachers in some districts have been told only 5% of teachers in the state will be allowed in the top category (the raise getting category), and none will be from their school. If this flies, I’m sure it will then eventually bleed into the private sector. To use their terms, when those of us in the public sector can no longer afford to buy the products made by the private sector, who do they think is going to buy their products?
Counting the days until we vote for governor again.
The scariest part is that Romney’s campaign looks a lot like Kasich’s did. If he gets in, what happened to Ohio will happen to the nation.