Saturday, June 27, 2015

Teacher of the Year Admits Molesting Fourth Grader

Former Washington Post ‘Teacher of the Year’ admits molesting 4th grader

June 26, 2015

Victor Skinner Victor Skinner

Victor is a communications specialist for EAG and joined in 2009. Previously, he was a newspaper journalist.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Washington Post’s Teacher of the Year is going to prison.

Giovanni Pena, 31, pleaded guilty to
second-degree sexual abuse of a child Friday in D.C. Superior Court
Friday. Pena is expected to remain in jail until he’s sentenced Sept. 4
as a judge turned down his attorney’s request for bail, WTOP reports.

The Washington Post named Pena Teacher of the Year in 2011.

Pena admitted to inappropriately touching a fourth grade student’s
groin over his pants at Oyster Adams Bilingual School in August 2013 and
June 2014. He also sent the 10-year-old male student pictures of his
genitals trough Snapchat and asked the boy to return the favor, though
the child declined, WUSA 9 reports.

taught fourth grade at Oyster Adams. He had worked there since 2008 and
taught second and third grades as well,” according to the news site.
“Pena was also the track and field coach as well as a mentor with the
student government program.”

The second-degree sexual abuse felony carries a potential 10-year
prison sentence. Pena was also charged with misdemeanor obscenity, which
is punishable by up to 180 days in jail, WTOP reports.

Pena pleaded guilty to the charges as part of a plea deal in which
prosecutors agreed not to “seek any additional charges that predate the
agreement,” according to the site.

Proseuctors told Judge Michael Ryan at a hearing earlier this month
that Pena “was curious if a 10-year-old boy could get an erection,” and
told the child he “wished they were the same age.”

He also reportedly taught the boy about sperm and masturbation, WUSA 9 reports.

Pena’s defense attorney requested house arrest at the earlier
hearing, arguing his transgression happened in the classroom and he
won’t be returning there any time soon. He also said some parents have
submitted letters of support for Pena.

But the prosecution countered at the time that Oyster Adams parents
said they observed Pena with the victim in the past and “were
uncomfortable with their interactions,” according to the news site.

“The stealthy nature of the activity concerns me,” Ryan said in
remanding Pena earlier this month. “I will have a hard time putting in
place additions which would keep him from having access to the internet,
phones and the ability to communicate with a child.”


The above piece appears in full on

Why Students and Teachers Should not be Friends on Social Media

Former Musselman Middle School teacher accused of sending nude pictures to students - Herald Mail Media: West Virginia

Friday, June 26, 2015

Oldham County Schools superintendent Dr. Will Wells suspended - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Oldham County Schools superintendent Dr. Will Wells suspended - WDRB 41 Louisville News

What could it be, a lot of shenanigans occur with these power hungry superintendents.  Many superintendents think they are above the law.  They think they exist to serve the system and not the parents, students, local school boards or taxpayers.  It will be interesting to see how this plays out.

"Far from failing in its intended task, our educational system is in
fact succeeding magnificently, because its aim is to keep the American
people thoughtless enough to go on supporting the system." - Richard
Mitchell, "The Underground Grammarian"

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott picks homeschooler to chair State Board of Education

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott picks homeschooler to chair State Board of Education

Time to get rid of Tenure

Teacher to handicapped student: ‘My people fought so we wouldn’t have to serve white people like you’

June 25, 2015

Victor Skinner Victor Skinner

Victor is a communications specialist for EAG and joined in 2009. Previously, he was a newspaper journalist.

WAYNESVILLE, Ohio – Recent media reports are highlighting the impact of misbehaving educators, revealing a system of tolerance and secret deals that often allows perpetrators to continue in the profession far longer than they should.

The Cincinnati Enquirer
submitted a public information request to 48 Ohio school districts in Hamilton, Butler, Clermont and Warren counties for employee misconduct reports, and the response is eye-opening.

Twenty-eight of the districts reported zero reports teacher misconduct, while six districts reported multiple problems.

“Three reports showed teachers convicted of sexual relationships with students, four had teachers allegedly involved in physical altercations with students, and four listed academic fraud, where teachers allegedly falsified test results or gave students answers ahead of time,” the news site reports.
“Statewide, the Ohio Department of Education resolved 676 investigations in 2014; 449, or 66 percent, resulted in some form of discipline, ranging from a letter of admonishment to license revocation.”

Those cases involved educators like Wayne Local Schools intervention specialist Pamela Bullock, who was investigated and later resigned after four teaching assistants wrote a letter last spring detailing her mistreatment of special education students.

Bullock allegedly threw a marker at one student, removed the safety wheels from the wheelchair of another, and was known for belittling students with racial references.

The same day Bullock allegedly threw a marker at a student’s head and “a racial comment was directed toward the same student,” the assistants wrote in their letter, according to the Enquirer.
“After applying a bandage to the student’s leg, (Bullock) said, ‘Anything else, your highness? … My people fought for years, so we wouldn’t have to serve white people like you.’”

And then there’s the repeat offenders, who slip through the cracks in the system, aided and abetted by school administrators and union representatives who negotiate secret deals that exchange a letter of resignation from a misbehaving teacher for a letter of recommendation for employment elsewhere.

The Enquirer reports:
In central Ohio, Columbus City Schools fired Jeffrey Poulton after he engaged in a romantic relationship with a teacher during school hours, according to state records. Poulton then got a job with North Fork Local Schools in southeast Ohio, but he was let go after one month.

From there, he went to Tennessee, where he resigned after he was suspended for alleged inappropriate communication with a student.

The kicker: North Fork Principal Mark Bowman gave Poulton a glowing recommendation for the Tennessee job. He rated Poulton “above average” in every category, saying he would rehire Poulton and that he was “great to be around — a plus in any system.”

Ohio officials took Poulton’s license March 10, citing the Columbus incident and an allegation that Poulton had a romantic relationship with a student back in 2009 — before the Columbus firing, before North Fork, and before Tennessee.
“Passing the trash,” or “the dance of the lemons,” as it’s known in the education world, is central to a landmark teacher tenure case in California – Vergara v. California.

reports the state’s attorney general and Gov. Jerry Brown are appealing a ruling last year that struck down tenure laws that protect misbehaving teachers.

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan hailed the ruling as a “mandate” to fix the broken system, while California’s teachers unions continue to argue there’s no evidence California’s teacher tenure system harms students.

But attorneys for the nine students who sued California over the tenure laws submitted evidence showing only two out of 275,000 teachers in the state are dismissed each year for poor performance.

“You don’t need a lot of adjectives and adverbs to be able to figure out that’s a broken system,” Marcellus McRae, attorney for the students, told reporters in a conference call, according to Reuters.

Instead of firing teachers that need to be fired – a very difficult, time consuming and expensive endeavor under California’s current tenure system – school officials more often simply shuffle bad teachers from one district to another in the “dance of the lemons.”

“And the schools most often on the receiving end of these ‘lemon’ transfers are schools serving predominantly poor and minority students,” McRae argues.

In the original Vergara v. California ruling by Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu, the judge found that California employs between 2,750 and 8,250 grossly ineffective teachers, meaning that California’s tenure system unfairly protects between 2,748 and 8,248 bad teachers – after deducting the two bad apples dismissed annually in The Golden State.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Poorly Educated People

Sadly our schools are teaching children how to be good victims and what to think, they are not teaching them how to think. Read more at Louder with Crowder.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Wo Po asks, Why are American schools slowing down so many bright children?

Public schools were designed to stamp out individual thinking, that was Dewey's intent.  Sadly, public schools are successful at this, they are not successful at teaching reading and math for the most part.  Public schools teach students what to think not how to think, they teach students to obey authority.

The following piece appears in full in the Washington Post.

Why are American schools slowing down so many bright children?

Columnist June 21 at 12:40 PM
Vicki Schulkin, a Northern Virginia parent, knew her son Matt was bright but did not think this was a problem until some of his teachers began to bristle at the erratic working habits that sometimes accompany intellectual gifts.

“In fourth grade, his English teacher told me early in the semester that he didn’t belong in her high-level class because he wasn’t completing all of his homework,” Schulkin said. That teacher changed her mind after he showed great creativity in a poetry assignment, but other instructors were less understanding.

In fifth grade, while Matt was doing SAT math problems in his head, his math teacher refused to acknowledge that he might be gifted because he wasn’tfinishing assignments that he found boring and repetitive.
At the Belin-Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development at the University of Iowa’s College of Education, this is old news. In 2004, it published an extensive report, “A Nation Deceived: How Schools Hold Back America’s Brightest Students,” with research showing that children like Matt were poorly served.

Now the center has done a follow-up, “A Nation Empowered: Evidence Trumps the Excuses Holding Back America’s Brightest Students.” Its 345 pages have encouraging stories about gifted children like Matt being allowed to accelerate their learning. But authors Susan G. Assouline, Nicholas Colangelo and Joyce VanTassel-Baska remain frustrated with school administrators and legislators impeding students who would do better in more challenging classes.
“Only nine states have policies explicitly permitting acceleration of gifted students,” they write, noting that only one state, Louisiana, prohibits it. “Sixteen states prohibit early entry to kindergarten.” Colangelo told me that the District and Maryland, Virginia and several other states let local districts set acceleration policies.

The authors list 20 forms of acceleration, including early kindergarten admission, grade skipping, Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate and early graduation from high school or college. The research shows that many biases against acceleration, such as the fear that children will feel awkward with older classmates, are unfounded. But resistance tograde skipping still rules many schools.
Teacher training programs have not done much to alter that. “It takes more to change teacher ideas about acceleration than a weekend or week-long professional development seminar,” the authors say.
Parents who want their children accelerated have to go to great lengths to make their case. In doing so, they are called “pushy” by educators who dismiss their arguments as nonsense fed by mother love.

That was the reaction Schulkin got at her son’s elementary school. “I wasn’t even asking to have him accelerated,” she said. “I had to fight and advocate for him all the way through. It always broke my heart that there had to be kids . . . who didn’t have parents able to constantly stick up for them.”

Sunday, June 21, 2015

F.A. Hayek on Free Thought vs. Free Action

F.A. Hayek on Free Thought vs. Free Action

Union launches personal attack against dissident teacher, releases confidential information

My Turn: Freedom of choice is the future of education | Concord Monitor

My Turn: Freedom of choice is the future of education | Concord Monitor

It is always nice to see a public school teacher who understands what is in the best interests of the children and does not have in mind to protect union jobs and a broken system.  The below piece appears in full on the Concord Monitor. 


My Turn: Freedom of choice is the future of education

The United States spends more per pupil on
education than any other country in the world. But our public schools
have failed our children. U.S. companies are dependent on
foreign-educated programmers, engineers and gene splicers, while the
“labor participation rate” of the U.S. population is only 63 percent. We
have millions of potential jobs, and millions of unemployed U.S.
citizens without the skills for those jobs. The gap is caused by schools
that don’t work.

Meanwhile, the $67 billion U.S.
Department of Education is launching yet another leviathan program to
force all children to learn exactly the same things in the same way at
the same time. Do all children really learn the same way, and develop at
the same speed? Are all children going to have the same career? Does an
economy really need 330 million clones, or is diversity what makes Adam
Smith’s “division of labor” work?

Nevada’s Republican legislature and
governor have decided to go directly against Common Core conformism and
give all their state’s children a chance to succeed in their own way. On
June 2, Gov. Brian Sandoval signed the first universal school-choice
bill in the United States. The bill’s principal sponsor was Sen. Scott
Hammond, a Las Vegas Republican and Nevada public school teacher.

Under the bill, a low-income family can
receive $5,700 per year per child for an “Education Savings Account.”
Any Nevada family above the low-income level can receive $5,100 per year
per child.

These amounts will sound low to New
Hampshire residents. We spent $16,246 per pupil in the 2013 school year.
But Nevada’s public schools cost only $8,339 per pupil in 2013, and the
average Nevada private high school spent only $8,664 per pupil this
year. So a $5,100 ESA will make many private schools affordable to
working Nevada parents.
Nevada’s legislature has left the maximum
amount of flexibility in the plan. In addition to traditional private
schools, parents can use their ESAs to pay for custom-designed
educational programs for each child. The ESA can fund tutoring, Internet
courses, AP, CLEP, university entrance or other tests. Parents can use
it for curriculum materials. It can even be used to pay for dual-credit
courses at Nevada colleges.

The Nevada plan will let every parent in
Nevada use every educational resource. Instead of walling off students
from the resources of the colleges in their own towns, and from the
massive education resources of the Internet, Nevada is opening the
school walls and bringing in the whole world.

For those who stay within the walls, the
Nevada plan raises the per-pupil funding for public schools. Every child
that takes a $5,100 ESA is leaving $3,239 behind to contribute to the
public system. Many parents will choose to add some of their own money
to their ESA funds in order to use a particular school or other
educational resource. Nevada’s Republicans are using school choice to
pump more money into better education, instead of just making an
outdated bureaucracy bigger and more expensive.

School choice is nothing new
internationally. The Netherlands has had its school choice program since
1917. About 70 percent of students in the Netherlands go to a wide
variety of private schools. Sixteen percent of Denmark’s children go to
private schools. Sweden has had school vouchers for more than 20 years.
So have Australia and New Zealand.

Unlike the United States, Canada scored
above most of the European countries on the PISA tests. Parents in
Canada have had publicly funded school choice since the 1800s. In the
province of Alberta, less than half the students go to the
geographically closest school. Canadian parents can choose their school
for the best fit to the child, not for the convenience of the

This is what Nevada has done. It has
given power back to the parents and opened a limitless world of
opportunities for their children. We in the “Live Free or Die” state
must do the same. Adding more bureaucracy and centralized control to
schools is just subsidizing failure. Diversity, innovation and freedom
of choice are the future of education, and of the world.

"The United States has more than 600,000 manufacturing jobs vacant
because there aren't enough qualified people to fill them." Referenced
in Samuel L Blumenfeld & Alex Newman, Crimes of the Educators How Utopians are Using Government Schools to Destroy America's Children