Posts from May 8th, 2012
May 8, 2012
- Twitter was filled with moving #ThankATeacher messages today for National Teacher Day. (Twitter)
- A former student of beloved children’s author Maurice Sendak, who died today, recalls him. (MakerBot)
- In a recent interview, Sendak praised children’s complexity and was curmudgeonly. (Colbert Nation)
- In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, a compendium of quotations about teaching. (Answer Sheet)
- We’re remembering some of our favorite teachers, and asking readers to do the same. (GS Facebook)
- A city teacher praises a math coach who helped him along by teaching without teaching. (Jose Vilson)
- Mayor Bloomberg thanks one of his teachers for making history come alive and feel relevant. (YouTube)
- A principal asks why the USDOE would hold charter school week during teacher week. (Practical Theory)
- And a teacher laments the evaluation focus of John King’s appreciation letter. (Miss Eyre/NYC Educator)
- Pop star Justin Bieber has graduated from high school, but he’s not headed to college. (People)
- A Pearson vice president says she supports cares about assessment as a mom, too. (Pearson FWD)
- Technologists painted a picture of the computer-aided testing of the future. (Curriculum Matters)
- Bayside High School is holding an open house tomorrow — to recruit students for 2013. (GS Calendar)
- A longtime parent activist and educational advocate is the new head of the city YMCA. (MarketWatch)
May 8, 2012
An embattled Brooklyn charter school facing closure will be allowed to continue registering new students for the 2012-2013 school year for at least the next couple weeks, a judged ruled this afternoon.
Even though the city wants it closed, Williamsburg Charter High School has already registered 60 students for next year, the school’s lawyer, Ellen Eagen, said at a New York State Supreme Court hearing today. The hearing was to determine whether or not to extend a temporary restraining order against the Department of Education’s plans to close the school.
The temporary restraining order allowed the school to hold a lottery on April 30 and begin formally accepting students who have been selected. Had the restraining order expired, the school would not have been able to register any more of the 200 students who applied.
Eagen argued in court that the extension was crucial to the school’s recruiting and admission efforts for next year in the event that the school receives a favorable ruling and is allowed to stay open. If the school stayed open, it would need to enroll at least 200 students to come close to full capacity compared to previous cohorts.
Last month, Chancellor Dennis Walcott upheld an earlier decision to terminate the charter of Williamsburg Charter High School at the end of the school year. The decision was based on the school’s prolonged affiliation with the Believe network and its former founder and CEO, Eddie Calderon-Melendez. Calderon-Melendez was indicted last month for personal tax evasion, falsifying documents and using company money to finance a personal trip to Europe. The school is $5 million in debt in part because of the network’s financial improprieties. (more…)
May 8, 2012
For 18 months, Eric Degiaimo could barely leave his apartment, paralyzed by fear of the outside world. Today, he’s a junior in high school who just celebrated his 19th birthday with friends in Times Square and harbors goals of becoming a musical engineer.
He’s also the recipient of a city advocacy groups’s annual award for students who have overcome great obstacles to attend schools that are right for them.
Eric’s path to isolation and back took him through rough terrain. By the time he was 15, he had incurred a lifetime of trauma while being raised by drug addicts, sexual predators, and a sister’s abusive boyfriends. Eric was kicked, spit on, and his apartment raided by drug dealers. He was forced to panhandle and fake Tourette’s Syndrome so people he lived with could collect disability to pay for their next high. Time and again he was hurt and exploited by the same people who were supposed to keep him safe.
His early life, as he puts it, “belongs in a horror film.”
The experiences made him emotionally fragile, unable to complete even the most mundane social interactions. Riding the subway or going to the store frightened him. A psychiatrist diagnosed him with posttraumatic stress disorder and anxiety problems.
Then named Eric Velazquez, he had been removed from his sister’s custody and placed in a group home when he met a social worker, Angela Degiaimo. The pair felt an immediate bond and within months, Eric had moved into Angela’s Flatbush apartment. Last year, she officially adopted him.
“He just has this loveable thing about him that people are charmed by,” Angela Degiaimo said. “I tell him that we were meant to be a family.” (more…)
May 8, 2012
Responding to a lawsuit filed by the city teachers and principals unions on Monday, the Department of Education pledged today not to make any hiring decisions about 24 schools slated for “turnaround” for at least a week.
Under the turnaround process the city is trying to use, all of the teachers at the schools would be “excessed” and then at least half — but very likely more — would be hired back by a committee of administrators and union representatives. After the city school board approved the turnarounds late last month, the city planned to convene the committees quickly and set them to work.
But under a stipulation agreement registered today in State Supreme Court, the department said it would refrain from telling teachers at the 24 schools that they had been cut loose — or rehired. The committees will begin considering candidates but can make no offers until after a judge rules on the unions’ lawsuit, which charges that the turnaround process violates their contracts with the city.
According to the agreement, the department must respond to the unions’ claims by Friday. Then the unions will respond to the department’s defense by the end of the day on May 15 before the two sides argue their cases before a judge the following day. (more…)
May 8, 2012
- Dealing with NewsCorp’s phone-hacking scandal has pulled Joel Klein from his education job. (Times)
- The UFT and CSA sued the city over school “closures.” (GothamSchools, Daily News, Post, NY1, WSJ)
- P.S. 234′s kindergarten wait list cleared already after the school added another class. (Tribeca Trib)
- Educators at the seven Queens schools set for turnaround fear some programs could die. (Daily News)
- Queens’ J.H.S. 157 students got a science lesson while designing the school’s new playground. (Times)
- The Baccalaureate School for Global Studies is the top city school in U.S. News’ rankings. (Daily News)
- A deal on school reform in Connecticut includes tenure changes and aid for charter schools. (The Day)