Archives for the month of: November, 2018

Rebecca Klein, education editor of Huffington Post, writes here about a voucher school in Florida that rejected a black child because it didn’t approve of his dreadlocks.

The good news is that the ACLU and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund are fighting back, saying that the ban by the all-white staff serves no useful purpose.

In August, 6-year-old Clinton Stanley Jr. was kicked out of his new school before he even had a chance to step inside a classroom. Administrators at the Florida school didn’t approve of his hairstyle, which he wore in locs, and said he couldn’t return until he changed it.

Now the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and American Civil Liberties Union are filing a legal complaint with the state’s Department of Education, alleging that the private school’s hair policy is racially discriminatory. The complaint cites HuffPost data showing that it is not uncommon for private schools in the state to maintain hair policies with clear racist undertones.

The school in question ― A Book’s Christian Academy ― is private, but it participates in several of the state’s voucher programs, which provides publicly funded scholarships for kids to attend private schools based on factors like income. Clinton was supposed to attend A Book’s Christian Academy on one such scholarship.

But the American Civil Liberties Union and Legal Defense Fund complaint says that A Book’s policy is illegal, violating federal civil rights laws that schools in state voucher programs are required to follow.

“A Book’s ban on ‘dreads’ – a style that Black students are particularly likely to wear – does not advance any legitimate school objective,” says the complaint. “Therefore, A Book’s policy illegally discriminates against Black students.”

I have recently been bombarded by comments, many from the same person, insisting that Trump had exactly the same punitive border policy regarding family separation as Presidents Obama and George W. Bush.

The Washington Post fact-checked this claim and found it to be false.

The Washington Post Fact-Checker (Glen Kessler and Salvador Rizzo) reviewed Trump’s recent interview with that newspaper and as usual found many distortions, lies, made-up non-facts. For example, it is not Democrats who are blocking Trump’s big beautiful Wall, but Republicans, who quite sensibly refuse to waste $25 billion on Trump’s signature promise.

Yesterday, I participated in a panel discussion at the Washington Post about national issues in education with Robert Pondiscio of the conservative Thomas B. Fordham Institute and Dean Bridget Terry Long of the Harvard Graduate School of Education. This followed a few other panels, including one in which Mayor Rahm Emanuel and his chosen school superintendent Janice Jackson lavished praise on their successful efforts to transform the public schools of Chicago, with nary a dissent.

Our panel did include dissent, since I was critical of school choice and the other two panelists supported it. I was critical of standardized testing, and Dean Long supported it.

Valerie Strauss did a great job moderating and keeping us on track.

In my opening statement, I argued that the key education issue of our time was the defunding of public schools by the federal and state governments. NCLB and Race to the Top had failed, because they emphasized testing and choice. But at the same time that the federal government disrupted schools and misdirected them with mandates, most states pursued a policy of cutting taxes, cutting school funding, and substituting “school choice” for adequate funding. I cited the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities report showing that 29 states spent less on education in the decade after the 2008 recession.

In our discussion of school choice, I said that school choice is the rightwing agenda that has been funded by Betsy DeVos, the Koch brothers, and the Walton family for decades. It was unfortunate that some Democrats joined their crusade to privatize education. I cited the blistering report about charter schools by Integrity Florida, which showed that rightwing money had promoted charters and vouchers and insulated them from any accountability. Furthermore, the money directed to charter schools had undermined the fiscal stability of public schools.

Robert Pondiscio retorted that school choice was not a “rightwing agenda,” it was a “moral agenda.”

In other words, he echoed the religious/moral rhetoric of Betsy DeVos.

He snidely said that both he and I had sent our children to private schools, so why shouldn’t poor families have the same choices?

This, I thought, was a low blow, because my husband and I didn’t ask for public funds to send our children to private schools 50 years ago. In retrospect, I think it was a mistake not to send them to public schools; it would have benefited them. But that is one of many mistakes I have made in my life.

Today, we know that charter and voucher schools do the choosing more often than parents. If you are the parent of a child with special needs, the odds are high that he/she will not be accepted by any charter school unless the disability is very mild and remediable. Furthermore, the public money available for vouchers will NOT enable poor parents to have the same choices as rich parents, since most voucher payments are in the range of $5,000-7,000 and elite private schools are usually $40,000-60,000. So, no, a voucher will not be enough to send your child to the Hill School, where the Trump children went.

He implied that it was “moral” to take money away from underfunded public schools so that a small percentage of students could choose to go to a charter school or religious school. If it was the former, it might close in a few months or it might kick the student out because of his or her behavior or disability; if it was the latter, the children might have an uncertified teacher or be exposed to textbooks that justify slavery and teach creation science.

He did not suggest that states and the federal government should appropriate more money to pay for choice. If there is not more money, then the schools that enroll 95% of the community’s children lose funding, cut teachers, have larger-sized classes, and lose electives and the arts.

It would be easier to argue that underfunding the public schools that most children attend is immoral. And that paying professional teachers so little that they have to work two or three extra jobs to make ends meet is immoral. And that denying the nation’s public school children the resources they need to have reasonable class sizes, professional teachers, the arts, and time for physical activity is immoral.

I offered the examples of Detroit and Milwaukee as school districts awash in school choice where students have not benefited. They are both among the lowest performing districts in the nation. No response from my fellow panelists.

I contend that it is immoral, unjust, and inequitable to advocate for policies that hurt 95% of students so that 5% can go to a private school. It is even more unjust to destabilize an entire school district by introducing a welter of confusing choices, including schools that open and close like day lilies.

Why don’t the advocates of school choice also advocate for funding to replace the money removed from the public schools?

PS: Thanks to Mike Petrilli for sending me the link to our panel.

About five weeks ago, I read a story onlineabout a small private school in Louisiana whose students had a 100% college entry rate and were admitted to America’s most selective colleges and universities. It was truly a miraculous school, said the story, because its students were poor black children from adverse circumstances who were all too often struggling in public schools. What was their secret sauce? I sent the story to Gary Rubinstein, who has a knack for detecting fraud, but all he could determine from the state records was that the school was tiny (only 142 students), its graduating class was tiny (class of 2015 had 5 graduates, class of 2016 had 8 graduates, class of 2017 had 13 graduates). The school did not have to supply any data about attrition or anything else. Just enrollment, class size (tiny) and graduation rate. The story implied the superiority of private schools and vouchers. It claimed that poverty and adversity didn’t matter when you did whatever this school was doing, which was not clear from the reports.

But now we know that none of its claims were true.

The New York Times published an expose.

BREAUX BRIDGE, La. — Bryson Sassau’s application would inspire any college admissions officer.

A founder of T.M. Landry College Preparatory School described him as a “bright, energetic, compassionate and genuinely well-rounded” student whose alcoholic father had beaten him and his mother and had denied them money for food and shelter. His transcript “speaks for itself,” the founder, Tracey Landry, wrote, but Mr. Sassau should also be lauded for founding a community service program, the Dry House, to help the children of abusive and alcoholic parents. He took four years of honors English, the application said, was a baseball M.V.P. and earned high honors in the “Mathematics Olympiad.”

The narrative earned Mr. Sassau acceptance to St. John’s University in New York. There was one problem: None of it was true.

“I was just a small piece in a whole fathom of lies,” Mr. Sassau said.

T.M. Landry has become a viral Cinderella story, a small school run by Michael Landry, a teacher and former salesman, and his wife, Ms. Landry, a nurse, whose predominantly black, working-class students have escaped the rural South for the nation’s most elite colleges. A video of a 16-year-old student opening his Harvard acceptance letter last year has been viewed more than eight million times. Other Landry students went on to Yale, Brown, Princeton, Stanford, Columbia, Dartmouth, Cornell and Wesleyan.

Landry success stories have been splashed in the past two years on the “Today” show, “Ellen” and the “CBS This Morning.” Education professionals extol T.M. Landry and its 100 or so kindergarten-through-12th-grade students as an example for other Louisiana schools. Wealthy supporters have pushed the Landrys, who have little educational training, to expand to other cities. Small donors, heartened by the web videos, send in a steady stream of cash.

In reality, the school falsified transcripts, made up student accomplishments and mined the worst stereotypes of black America to manufacture up-from-hardship tales that it sold to Ivy League schools hungry for diversity. The Landrys also fostered a culture of fear with physical and emotional abuse, students and teachers said. Students were forced to kneel on rice, rocks and hot pavement, and were choked, yelled at and berated.

The Landrys’ deception has tainted nearly everyone the school has touched, including students, parents and college admissions officers convinced of a myth.

The colleges “want to be able to get behind the black kids going off and succeeding, and going to all of these schools,” said Raymond Smith Jr., who graduated from T.M. Landry in 2017 and enrolled at N.Y.U. He said that Mr. Landry forced him to exaggerate his father’s absence from his life on his N.Y.U. application.

“It’s a good look,” these colleges “getting these bright, high-flying, came-from-nothing-turned-into-something students,” Mr. Smith said.

This portrait of T.M. Landry emerged from interviews with 46 people: parents of former Landry students; current and former students; former teachers; and law enforcement agents. The New York Times also examined student records and court documents showing that Mr. Landry and another teacher at the school had pleaded guilty to crimes related to violence against students, and police records that included multiple witness statements saying that Mr. Landry hit children. The Breaux Bridge Police Department closed the case after deciding it was outside of its jurisdiction.

“That dream you see on television, all those videos,” said Mr. Sassau’s mother, Alison St. Julien, “it’s really a nightmare.”

In an interview with The Times, the Landrys denied falsifying transcripts and college applications, but Mr. Landry admitted that he hit students and could be rough. “Oh, I yell a lot,” he said. He goads black and white students to compete against one another because that is how the real world works, he said.

In 2013, Mr. Landry was sentenced to probation and attended an anger management program after pleading guilty to a count of battery. Despite the documentation, he insisted that he did not plead guilty or serve probation. Mr. Landry said that the victim was a student whose mother asked him to hit her child, and he said he had eased up on physical punishments.

“I don’t do that anymore,” he said.

A court document recording minutes from the sentencing hearing of Michael Landry’s battery case.
Instead, he calls himself a “drill sergeant” or “coach,” and asks children to kneel before him to learn humility, for five minutes at most, Mr. Landry said.

That is not how the students have experienced it. Tyler Sassau, Mr. Sassau’s brother, said he can still feel the humiliation and smell the stench on his clothes from kneeling last year on a bathroom floor for nearly two hours.

“I wasn’t going to get up without asking him because if I did, I could’ve got something worse,” he said. “I could barely stand when I got up.”

In their defense, the Landrys touted the school’s ACT scores and high graduation and college enrollment statistics.

“We get pushed under the microscope, or under the dagger,” Mr. Landry said, because “it had been just black kids going. Society kept saying all these negative things about us because it was just easy to beat this broken-down school.”

“I really believe that we all thought we were doing the right thing at the time, and didn’t have a choice,” Mr. Smith said. “It was a cultish mentality.”

T.M. Landry produced its first graduating class in 2013, and since then, 50 students have graduated, according to the school’s promotional materials. They have had mixed success in college.

Some alumni, especially those who spent only a short time at T.M. Landry, have been successful. Bryson Sassau did well in his classes at St. John’s, although he had to quit some advanced science and math courses. Mr. Smith also did well, but with debts mounting had to drop out after his freshman year. Another Landry graduate said he feels at home at Brown in his junior year, has maintained good grades and was recently accepted into a program that prepares students to pursue a doctoral degree.

The student in the most viral video, who spent only a short time at Landry, is in his first semester at Harvard. Other Landry students have been admitted to Harvard over the past three years, but the university declined to provide information on their status.

For yet other Landry students, particularly those who spent multiple years at the school, the results after graduation have been disappointing. Some have withdrawn from college, or transferred to less rigorous programs.

Asja Jackson, whose Wesleyan University acceptance video also went viral, decided to leave this month after she said she fell into a depression over her first-semester struggles. She said she “froze and failed” her first chemistry tests and walked out of a biology exam. Her papers, she said, were “childish,” and she was too embarrassed to attend a writing workshop.

She studied and worked through the night, like she had done at T.M. Landry since eighth grade, but she just was not “catching it,” she said. She said she eventually stopped eating, talking to her friends, leaving her room or going to class.

“I didn’t understand why people around me were doing well, and I wasn’t,” said Ms. Jackson, who took the advice of her dean and started medical leave. “I couldn’t tell my friends because they would say, ‘How did you get into the school then?’ There were too many questions that I couldn’t answer.”

At least five T.M. Landry families spoke with local law enforcement, and two more contacted the local education authorities for aid, but little changed.

Ashlee McFarlane, a lawyer at Gerger Khalil & Hennessy in Houston, said dozens of parents, students and staff have left the school and are reaching out to her for help.

“Above all,” Ms. McFarlane said, “they want to protect their children and to finally be heard.”

This is a video of Yong Zhao’s brilliant lecture on education reform at Wellesley College on Bovember 1.

He called it “What Works May Hurt. Side Effects in Education.” He recently published a book explains this paradox. I strongly recommend this book and every other book Zhao has written. He is a truly fresh thinker.

Here is an example. Suppose you discovered a method of teaching reading that is certain to raise test scores but equally certain to make students hate reading. Would you go with this approach?

His lecture is informed, witty, and entertaining.

I hope you will make time to watch this wonderful scholar at his best.

I endowed this lecture series a few years back. All the talks are archived here.

In this post, Jeanne Kaplan tells the 15-year story of “reform” in Denver, which has recently been lauded by Betsy Devos and the Learning Policy Institute at Stanford University as a stellar example of school choice.

She describes how the board was persuaded to choose an insider when Michael Bennett stepped aside to join the U.S. Senate, in order to cover up a shady financial transaction. Kaplan was a member of the school board at the time that Tom Boasberg replaced Michael Bennett.

Now, she says, the board has only one candidate–an insider–to keep the shell game of choice going without asking questions about outcomes for students.

Angie Sullivan teaches in a high-poverty elementary school in Clark County, Nevada.

She sent this letter, pleading for common sense, to every member of the Legislature.

I love Angie for standing up and speaking out.

She wrote:

I’m reviewing the #NVLeg bill drafts.

There are already 69 education related requests.

Have to be honest.

If you have not consulted with Teachers, worked with CCEA, or done some homework – you could be costing the state and all sorts of folks – a lot of money.

Folks who have to implement educational ideas should be asked about them.

“Great ideas” NEED a money line when they become legislative language.

And a data line. Someone needs to be paid to “track” the data and implementation too.

Sorry folks.

Bad news: Staff, supplies, time all cost money.

You are expensive thinkers.

You are not responsible payers.

Be responsible.

Be real about the cost.

The professional skill, the text or materials, and the professional time to plan and implement. It all costs. Demanding we work for free to implement your great ideas – has got to stop. You need to pay folks. We love you all. No means No. It is abusive and not responsible how folks treat Nevada Teachers.

Pay your bills first now. Make sure basic needs are met. The money goes fast.

If you put something on the plate, you need to take something off. Our plates are full. Do not load us up and drown us.

Or you need to pay for additional staff and new supplies and the hours it takes for your “great ideas” to be put into curriculum.

By the way – I usually LOVE those ideas.

I HATE the lack of appetite for raising money to pay for those ideas.

Nevada Legislators are notorious bipartisan spend-thrifts.

While also being sneaky about unfunded mandates – also known as – do it without money.

Your ideas will NOT magically happen for free on a state-wide level. There are no magic wands. The fairy has left the building. Nobody enjoys working for free. I am looking at all of you old-timers who should know better. You know who you are.

No one except for a few courageous souls have shown real Nevada leadership in getting real education money to the classroom level. That is what you should all focus on as a Bipartisan Southern Caucus. That would make a real difference. We are shorted. Someone needs to work on fixing that.

Education Bills need a Money line. They cost.

Education Bills need a Data line. We need to prove they did what they were supposed to do and someone should be paid to track it. Regular reports should be given to see if it worked.

I spoke to some lovely folks the other day who wanted to import some fantastic ideas from Chicago. When I told them they needed a money line and a data line – they told me they did not. Not something anyone should say to me. Ever.

Let me be frank.

The Nevada Legislature funds at the bottom. The Southern Caucus gets routinely shorted. Therefore…

There is zero extra in the inner city Vegas city classroom. We are running in the negative. Subsidizing classrooms by demanding teachers pay from our own teacher paychecks is routine.

You want a civics program, a drug education program, or a charter school for one student in Eureka- you need to cost that out. And your specific community needs to pay for it. Or raise taxes from the community with that specific need. Ask your neighborhood school if they really need your great idea. Go to your school SOT and ask them if they need that – or if they actually need something else desperately.

Handing me a bunch of expensive stuff I cannot use when my students are in such dire straits is heartbreaking.

I can tell by looking at these BDRs. Some folks are really off-target for my community in East Las Vegas. Way off target for my community soaked in poverty and need. It is shocking how off target.

Just like any budget.

There are things we NEED like:

Fully licensed teacher in every classroom – cost $60 million. (Training for severely underprepared Teachers, vacancies, recruitment, pipeline, retention efforts)

School safety – cost $150 million. (School police, psychologists, social workers, and counselors -as well as school training and procedure education) ** does not include building upgrades like gates and locks and security systems.

Updated reading, math, science consumables/textbooks/General supplies – $235 million ($300,000 each year for 349 schools). **This does not include other programs which also need supplies

Read by Three tutoring – (35,000 students x $2,000) $70 million each year or $140 million

Updated district-wide wifi broad band and hardware/software – $200 million ($500,000 x 349 schools)

Adding to Weighted Funding to meet needs of students with language learning, poverty or special education needs costs – $2 billion. Many of our students require sigificant additional support to learn due to circumstances beyond their control. Weighted funding needs to be increased each year and targeted to address the severe need.

The money goes fast when you focus on the basics.

There are things we want – like a photo in the paper with 12 cute kids we helped plant a garden. Love gardens. If you ask me what I need – it is not a garden right now. And I love gardens. I love ours. But I need a box or paper and a copier that works.

Frankly, I want it all. I know it is important.

Love gardens, art, civics, drug education, Native American education, financial planning education, fingerprinting everyone in the school, diversity training, meeting every child’s personal or “choice” needs. Love Love Love. I wish we could have every important thing. I would pull from my own pocket for all those ideas.

But most of those items are “luxury spending” compared to our significant needs.

We need to stay focused on the huge basic NEED.

Taking from thousands of disadvantaged students to pay for your personal pet projects or something that benefits only one small group – has got to stop.

Some kids do not have a classroom with a book and a teacher.

All students need adequate access first.

And unfunded mandates have put us in the hole. For example: Demanding we test but never updating our computer systems.

Folks wonder why we fail when the tests do not run on old systems?

Common sense.

The lights have to come on, supplies need to be onhand, equipment/technology needs to be adequate, and a teacher needs to stand in every classroom. When you do not make basics a priority – the kids suffer.

Pay the bills first.

Previous great legislation is not even implemented anymore because there is no money. Empowerment legislation money is where? Hiding behind a “new and shinier” teacher leadership ideas? That is not responsible either. Best practice no longer funded should be revisited. Not an exciting job but tried and true.

Folks are new and excited.

I want everyone to have a great session.

Listen up: We need money to pay for your ideas.

And your ideas have to be authentic and research based and educational best practice.

Be responsible.

Please call CCEA. 702-733-3063 They have important priority ideas and bills we really need to make sure every child has access and opportunity.

The Teacher,



[Here are a list of the 69 education-related bills that have been filed.]

BDR 34-10
Makes various changes relating to education.
Requested by Senator Harris on 8/11/2017

BDR 34-13
Revises provisions relating to education.
Requested by Senator Harris on 8/11/2017

BDR 14
Revises provisions relating to education.
Requested by Senator Gansert on 8/22/2017

BDR 34-23
Revises provisions governing school safety.
Requested by Assemblywoman Miller on 10/11/2017

BDR 33
Establishes in statute the Nevada Commission on Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Requested by Assemblyman Ohrenschall on 2/23/2018

BDR 15-41
Revises provisions governing school safety.
Requested by Assemblyman Wheeler on 3/5/2018

BDR 57-43
Requires health insurers to provide coverage for certain equipment for children with disabilities.
Requested by Senator Spearman on 3/19/2018

BDR 17-62
Revises provisions relating to the Nevada Youth Legislature.
Requested by Senator Woodhouse on 5/16/2018

BDR 77
Establishes a school in Nevada for children who are blind, deaf or hard of hearing.
Requested by Senator Spearman on 5/17/2018

BDR 34-82
Revises provisions governing charter schools.
Requested by Assemblywoman Titus on 6/4/2018

BDR 93
Revises provisions governing read by grade 3 in public schools.
Requested by Assemblyman Thompson on 6/8/2018

BDR 105
Revises provisions governing safe and respectful learning environments in public schools.
Requested by Assemblyman Carrillo on 6/17/2018

BDR S-107
Makes an appropriation for educational leadership training programs.
Requested by Senate Committee on Finance on 6/18/2018

BDR 15-119
Revises provisions governing possession and storage of firearms.
Requested by Assemblyman Fumo on 6/22/2018

BDR 122
Makes various education reforms.
Requested by Assemblyman Edwards on 6/22/2018

BDR 43-128
Revises provisions governing safety of children.
Requested by Assemblywoman Spiegel on 6/22/2018

BDR 34-132
Requires that instruction in the founding principles of American government be specifically included in public schools.
Requested by Assemblyman Wheeler on 6/28/2018

BDR 133
Revises provisions relating to cannabis.
Requested by Senator Cancela on 6/27/2018

BDR 14-142
Revises provisions governing certain juvenile offenders.
Requested by Assemblyman Hambrick on 6/29/2018

BDR 5-143
Revises provisions governing criminal procedures for certain juvenile offenders who are also victims of crime.
Requested by Assemblyman Hambrick on 6/29/2018

BDR S-144
Makes appropriations for incentives for employing teachers at Title I and underperforming schools.
Requested by Assemblyman Frierson on 7/1/2018

BDR 34-156
Revises provisions relating to the board of trustees of certain school districts.
Requested by Senator Kieckhefer on 7/10/2018

BDR 5-165
Revises provisions relating to school safety.
Requested by Senate Minority Leader on 7/20/2018

BDR 167
Makes various changes to improve school safety.
Requested by Senator Gansert , Assemblywoman Tolles on 7/9/2018

BDR 54-180
Revises provisions relating to the medical use of marijuana or industrial hemp.
Requested by Senator Spearman on 7/23/2018

BDR 34-243
Revises provisions relating to education funding.
Requested by Senator Kieckhefer on 7/24/2018

BDR 247
Makes certain changes relating to education.
Requested by Senator Gansert on 7/24/2018

BDR 23-251
Revises provisions relating to collective bargaining.
Requested by Assemblyman Wheeler on 7/25/2018

BDR 19-252
Designates English as the official common language of the State of Nevada.
Requested by Assemblyman McArthur on 7/25/2018

BDR 34-262
Eliminates certain training required of teachers.
Requested by Senator Hardy on 7/30/2018

BDR 263
Makes certain changes relating to education, including increasing the salary for all members of the board of trustees of each school district, requiring the school board districts in certain counties to have the same geographic boundaries as the county commission districts, and authorizing public schools, including charter schools, to accept pupils on a part-time basis.
Requested by Senator Segerblom on 7/30/2018

BDR 271
Makes certain changes relating to marijuana, including revising provisions governing the transferability of medical marijuana establishment registration certificates, providing for dual licensing of medical and recreational marijuana facilities, providing for state certification of marijuana products sold in Nevada, appropriating $1 million to study the feasibility of creating a marijuana stock exchange in Las Vegas, appropriating $1 million from the existing 10% excise tax on marijuana for medical marijuana research grants to be given out by the Department of Health and Human Services, authorizing local governments to issue offsite marijuana licenses to marijuana dispensary owners to allow for tasting and sale of marijuana products in certain settings such as coffee shops, revising state laws concerning driving while under the influence of marijuana to provide a rebuttable presumption when a person’s blood level is over the legal limit, authorizing District Attorneys to expunge misdemeanor convictions relating to marijuana from a person’s criminal record, and prohibiting employers, under certain circumstances, from testing for marijuana pre-employment or without probable cause post-employment.
Requested by Senate Committee on Judiciary on 7/30/2018

BDR R-279
AJR: Urges Congress to require the United States Census Bureau to ensure a fair 2020 national census.
Requested by Assemblyman Thompson on 7/31/2018

BDR 281
Revises provisions relating to school safety.
Requested by Senator Hammond on 7/31/2018

BDR 282
Makes certain changes relating to school safety.
Requested by Senator Hammond on 7/31/2018

BDR 34-283
Creates the Program to Develop Leadership Skills for Public School Pupils.
Requested by Senator Hammond on 7/31/2018

BDR 34-285
Revises provisions relating to education savings accounts and education funding.
Requested by Senator Hammond on 7/31/2018

BDR 289
Revises provisions governing the care of children by volunteer families.
Requested by Assemblyman Frierson on 7/31/2018

BDR 54-294
Establishes conditions for the performance of certain surgical procedures.
Requested by Senator Parks on 7/31/2018

BDR 305
Revises provisions governing early childhood education.
Requested by Assemblywoman Monroe-Moreno on 8/1/2018

BDR 34-308
Revises provisions relating to Nevada Promise Scholarships.
Requested by Senator Denis on 8/1/2018

BDR 309
Revises provisions relating to data privacy.
Requested by Senator Denis on 8/1/2018

BDR 310
Revises provisions relating to education.
Requested by Senator Denis on 8/1/2018

BDR 43-320
Provides for the issuance of a specialty license plate memorializing the historic Westside “Moulin Rouge” to assist with scholarships for low-income high school graduates interested in pursuing the arts.
Requested by Assemblyman McCurdy on 8/1/2018

BDR 321
Revises provisions governing education.
Requested by Assemblywoman Diaz on 8/1/2018

BDR 323
Revises provisions governing taxation.
Requested by Assemblywoman Diaz on 8/1/2018

BDR 324
Makes various changes relating to education.
Requested by Assemblywoman Diaz on 8/1/2018

BDR 368
Makes an appropriation for educational programs relating to history, law and civics.
Requested by Senator Woodhouse on 8/2/2018

BDR 34-383
Revises the eligibility requirements for the Governor Guinn Millennium Scholarship Program.
Requested by Committee to Conduct a Study Concerning the Cost and Affordability of Higher Education (A.B. 202, 2017) on 6/4/2018

BDR 34-384
Creates a state-funded grant program for university students.
Requested by Committee to Conduct a Study Concerning the Cost and Affordability of Higher Education (A.B. 202, 2017) on 6/4/2018

BDR 34-385
Revises the eligibility requirements for the Silver State Opportunity Grant.
Requested by Committee to Conduct a Study Concerning the Cost and Affordability of Higher Education (A.B. 202, 2017) on 6/4/2018

BDR 34-386
Establishes a long-term stakeholder group to develop a statewide vision and implementation plan for Nevada’s educational system.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-387
Revises provisions relating to review of the equity allocation model used to calculate a basic support guarantee for each school district.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-388
Revises provisions relating to the licensure and employment of veterans, military personnel and their spouses in Nevada’s public schools.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-389
Creates a task force to study the creation of a tiered career pathway for educators.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-390
Revises provisions relating to school discipline.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-391
Authorizes variable-length renewal of charter contracts.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-392
Provides for the separate regulation of online charter schools.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-393
Extends the English Mastery Council and expands the duties of the Council.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-394
Provides flexibility to school districts to award credit for coursework completed by pupils experiencing homelessness or in foster care.
Requested by Legislative Committee on Education (NRS 218E.605) on 8/9/2018

BDR 34-397
Revises provisions relating to the education of certain children from Nevada who are patients or residents of certain hospitals or facilities located in another state.
Requested by Senate Committee on Finance on 8/14/2018

BDR 31-398 – SB26

Revises provisions governing school finance administration.
Requested by Clark County School District on 8/14/2018
Revises provisions governing school financial administration. (BDR 31-398)
AN ACT relating to school districts; excluding certain money from collective bargaining negotiations and from consideration in determining the ability of a school district to pay compensation and monetary benefits; and providing other matters properly relating thereto.
Introduction Date:
Friday, November 16, 2018
Fiscal Notes:
Effect on Local Government: No.
Effect on the State: No.
Existing law requires each local government employer to engage in collective bargaining with the recognized employee organization, if any, for each appropriate bargaining unit among its employees. (NRS 288.150) Existing law also establishes a process for the resolution of an impasse in collective bargaining through fact-finding, arbitration or both, but imposes limitations on the money that a fact finder or arbitrator may consider in determining the financial ability of a local government employer to pay compensation or monetary benefits. (NRS 288.200, 288.215, 288.217, 354.6241) Under existing law, for certain governmental funds of a local government other than a school district, a budgeted ending fund balance of not more than 25 percent of the total budgeted expenditures, less capital outlay, is not subject to negotiations and cannot be considered by a fact finder or arbitrator in determining the ability of the local government to pay compensation or monetary benefits. (NRS 354.6241) This bill establishes that for a school district, an ending fund balance of not more than 8.3 percent of the total budgeted expenditures, less capital outlay, is not subject to negotiations and cannot be considered by a fact finder or arbitrator in determining the ability of the school district to pay compensation or monetary benefits.
Primary Sponsor
Senate Committee on Government Affairs

BDR 23-405
Revises provisions relating to collective bargaining.
Requested by Senator Atkinson on 8/23/2018

BDR 34-415 – SB57

This article in Chalkbeat, sad to say, illustrates the inherent bias of a publication funded by the charter industry’s magnates.

Here are the facts: Charter Schools in New York State derived their political power from their alliance with hedge fund managers, Wall Street, the Republican Party, and Governor Cuomo (who relies on hedge fund managers and Wall Street for campaign contributions). In the midterms, the Republican Party and a group of Democrats who voted with the Republicans in the State Senate, were ousted.

Consequently, the Assembly and the State Senate will be controlled by progressive Democrats who are opposed to charter schools. In other words, the charter sector benefitted financially by their partnership with reactionary Republicans (and a half dozen Democrats who voted as if they were Republicans).

So Chalkbeat gives its readers an article posing the dilemma of “progressive charter leaders,” who don’t want to suffer because of their longstanding success at working with the Republicans who lost.

The article doesn’t explain in what ways these charters are “progressive.” Are they non-union, like most charters? Are they integrated? Do they take the kids with the greatest needs? Or are they just lobbying to keep a modicum of power in Albany?

The article uncritically states that there is a “waiting list” of 80,000. Where did that number come from? Was it audited? By whom? Or was it simply manufactured to claim a need that may or may not exist?

The new class of state senators ran against Democrats and Republicans who were funded by the charter lobby. The new Democratic leader of the State Senate is Andrea Stewart-Cousins. She was the target of a vile, racist attack last year by billionaire Daniel S. Loeb, who at the time was chair of the board of Eva Moskowitz’s Success Academy charter chain. He said Senator Stewart-Cousins, who is African-American, had done “more damage to people of color than anyone who has ever donned a hood.”

Charter schools aligned themselves with the Trump-DeVos-Walton-Koch view of school choice. Elections have consequences.

Journalists should strive to avoid advocacy. That’s the realm of the editorial and opinion pages. Not journalists.

Mike Miles, former superintendent of Dallas public schools and former superintendent of a Colorado district, was turned down by the Colorado Springs school board when he applied to open a charter school in a former Macy’s department store in a large shopping mall.

Miles led the Dallas district for three tumultuous years, during which time there was a sizable teacher exodus and stagnant test scores, which he had pledged to raise. Miles is a military man who attended the unaccredited Broad Superintendents Academy.

“The district’s board rejected Miles’ 210-page proposal 6-1 on Wednesday night and relinquished charter authorization, which means Miles will need to petition the Colorado Charter School Institute, a state authorizer, for approval to open in the fall of 2019…

“District administrators and members of the District Accountability Committee raised numerous concerns about the proposal at a Nov. 14 board meeting, including the governance model, finances, not providing transportation for students and the location being in close proximity to marijuana dispensaries and alcohol outlets such as a Hooters restaurant.

“It would be in both of our respective interests” for D-11 to relinquish exclusive chartering authority and permit organizers to apply to CSI, D-11 Superintendent Michael Thomas said.

“I believe the conditional requirements and expectations that would need to be addressed would not be able to be done in a timely fashion,” he said Wednesday, in issuing a recommendation to deny the application.

“Miles agreed to the relinquishment, Thomas said.

“Board member Teresa Null cast the sole opposing vote, saying sending organizers to the state authorizing body won’t remove the concerns of D-11 representatives who reviewed and analyzed the application.

“We do not think this charter school can be ready for our students by next year, and going to CSI is not going to change that dynamic — they’re still not going to be ready,” Null said.

“Among her personal concerns: “They want to put a playground in a parking lot.”

“Coperni 3 would be the second school in a charter school network Miles is building under the name Third Future Schools. The first school in the network, Academy of Advanced Learning, opened in the fall of 2017 in Aurora, as part of Aurora Public Schools.”

The discussion at the Washington Post occurs from 4-6 pm today!