Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Gates ... expanding access to high education

Here is an interesting update on More Gates Foundation activity.

My Meeting With Bill and Melinda Gates
By Wick Sloane

Of course Bill and Melinda would want my take on saving the world. I am the nation’s most prestigious obscure columnist on the deadening topic... — of community colleges.

.....“First, our research revealed that a high-leverage intervention point in breaking the intergenerational transmission of poverty is to focus on young people in the critical decade between ages 16 and 26, as they make the transition to adulthood and as (or before) they become parents themselves. Second, our research showed that if one were to choose the single most important lever for improving the life prospects of these young people and their children, it would be to help young adults earn educational credentials beyond a high school diploma.”

Right on, Bill and Melinda.


Anonymous said...

This goes to show you that education and particularly, curriculum are sensitive subjects for both the GOP and Democrats.

While its been profitable for foundations and their supporters, I hope this is a sign that some powerful influences are pulling out of this debate, now that the damage to curriculum and public education is more visible to the public. What institution would want to be aligned with this political wreck?

Interesting that not a single institution proposed something so simple as supporting a school's adoption of Singapore.

B. and supporters will more than lose this election and that should be the beginning of the end. Right. These are idiots out to steal public money, will they continue? Of course, its the only thing they can do well.

Anonymous said...

Its pretty easy and profitable to teach algebra to an 18 year old. You can own a school online and not even pay a teacher. Go gettem Bill. US schools train young adults to be golf caddys, cut lawns, and run cash registers.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Walmart needs cashiers in Mexico now that the dollar is in free-fall and the Peso is lifting off. Haven't you noticed that illegal immigration is at its lowest level in 30 years.

So is it the economics and people just can't afford to live on their low wages here or is it as Bush claims Homeland security?

How about that petrol? Up 70% and record earnings from XOM - largest net profit in DOW history this quarter. You can thank Bush and his banker pals - unemployment around 6% too. Government just passed a new debt limit ($10 trillion). Eventually, all those dollars have to come home. The question is when.

They're building Walmarts in Mexico and leaving empty stores in the US that were paid for with taxpayer dollars given as small business grants (corporate welfare). That's how your government spends your money to stimulate your economy. Just remember that next time you vote.

Anonymous said...

$10 per hour = What a teacher is worth online. That's how the US values its educators. Teachers reduced to a slave's wages.

Educate Online is leading the way in online instruction over the web for Grades 3-9 and has great part-time opportunities for certified or previously certified teachers to teach students from your home via the Internet.

Are you a teaching professional who loves teaching but would enjoy the convenience of teaching from home? This is an ideal opportunity for at home parents, retired teachers, or teachers who are not able to travel to a traditional classroom setting.

Online teaching duties include:

The ability to teach both Reading and Math in one of the following subject combinations:

Reading and Math (Grades 3 - 8)

Math (Grades 3 - 8) and Algebra

Following provided lesson plans to coach students through independent and guided practice exercises

Submit thorough notes on the progress of each student at the end of each tutoring session. Identify areas of weakness necessary to modify the individualized curriculum for that student.

Teach a maximum of three students at a time in our online learning environment
Schedules are flexible and include day and evening hours during the week and weekends. Additionally, each teacher will receive paid training in the comfort of your home on how to use our state-of-the-art online, interactive instructional program.

Compensation is $10/hour for instructors proficient in teaching Math and Reading. We also offer a part-time employee benefits package including medical and dental coverage as well as a 401(k) retirement savings plan!

Anonymous said...

Online education = Walmart

Anonymous said...

Franchising virtual academies - coming to a district near you...

A pyramid scheme -

Teacher satisfaction with k-12 [fully aligned] curriculum
96% satisfaction
4% dissatisfaction



Anonymous said...

"K¹² provides a world-class, comprehensive solution to online learning. Working with K¹² has allowed us to improve the educational experience of our students and attract new students to our school."
Kim Ross, Superintendent
Houston Public Schools
Houston, MN

(population: 1020)
Median age 44!!

Anonymous said...

Here's the data for one of these virtual academies - it ends up Houston is a hub for Minnesota


Minnesota Virtual Academy rated an 18 on a scale of 0 - 100.

Enrollment: 612 students, 5% Title I

MN Center for Online Learning is the secondary school located at the same address.

Enrollment: 89

Rated: 19 out of 100

Very strange looking statistics.

Anonymous said...

This is the WA franchise


Online Public School Casts Net in Spokane: Washington Virtual Academy Now Admits Local Students
Posted on: Wednesday, 28 June 2006, 12:00 CDT

Jun. 28--A school district 300 miles from Spokane is looking to enroll local students in its Internet-based public school.

Steilacoom Historical School District, south of Tacoma, launched its Washington Virtual Academy for students up to eighth grade in Spokane on Tuesday, saying it "will be the largest online school available" in the state.

The online school provides home-based students with curriculum and materials, including online resources, textbooks and assessments administered under the supervision of a certificated teacher.

The district is sponsoring the state-funded academy through a partnership with K12 Inc. The for-profit company provides online curricula to virtual schools in 15 states, including Idaho.

"This is the future of schools," said Rep. Gigi Talcott, R-Tacoma, who was in Spokane for the academy's launch. "The way we learn has changed. ... Students are living with technology every day."

Who owns k12, Inc?

Delightful pic of former sec. of education


Some public-education advocates are questioning $4 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Education (ED) to launch an online charter school in Arkansas that benefits the for-profit education company founded by conservative icon William J. Bennett. They say Bennett's firm might have profited unfairly from his political connections, and they claim the federal funds are being used to subsidize education for home-schooled students at the expense of public schools.

Full boat Bennett

Some public-education advocates are questioning $4 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Education (ED) to launch an online charter school in Arkansas that benefits the for-profit education company founded by conservative icon William J. Bennett. They say Bennett's firm might have profited unfairly from his political connections, and they claim the federal funds are being used to subsidize education for home-schooled students at the expense of public schools.

Anonymous said...

Gigi Talcott - WASL alternatives

Students would have to fail the WASL twice before they could take an alternative.

Although other Education committee members echoed Santos’ view, they agreed to recommend passage by the entire House. The measure already has cleared the Washington Senate.

Committee members also recommended passage of a companion measure requiring a two-year study of possible options to the WASL test.

Republican Gigi Talcott, from Lakewood near Tacoma, said the study goes hand-in-hand with the WASL alternatives bill.

“If we were only doing a study this year, this would be a huge disappointment. But we have made great progress in making pathways for the class of 2008 that hopefully will make it to the governor’s desk and into the students’ lives,” said Talcott.

Anonymous said...

This is a comparison of online students (first number) with Washington students (second number) performance on the WASL.


Math scores are 12 points lower, while the other scores are above the state average.

This gives you some idea of how much teachers are having to supplement instruction in the classroom. The K12 inc. curriculum is based on Core Knowledge, developed by E.D. Hirsch.

2006-07 WASL Scores45
Online pass rate
(Insight School program)
Washington state pass rate

Anonymous said...

K12 inc is listed on the NYSE (LRN) earnings -1.12 per annum. As an IPO it opened at 18 per share and is trading around 25 per share.
Watch and learn, grasshopper!

Anonymous said...

Here's the founder, Ron Packard

Packard founded K12 Inc. in 1999 with the vision to provide every child access to an excellent education regardless of their geographic, financial or demographic circumstances. Since then the company has grown to become the leader in K-12 curriculum and online school programs.

Before starting K12 Inc., Packard served as a vice president of Knowledge Universe and CEO of Knowledge Schools. Previously, he worked for McKinsey & Company as well as for Goldman Sachs in mergers and acquisitions. He holds a B.A. in Economics and Mechanical Engineering with honors from the University of California at Berkeley and an M.B.A. with honors from the University of Chicago.

McKinsey and Goldie....

LRN shares are 41% held by private investors, who's identity is not available.

Anonymous said...

Statement By Ron Packard, Founder and CEO of K12 Inc., On Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle Signing SB 396 into Law
Posted on: Tuesday, 8 April 2008, 12:00 CDT

K12 Inc. (NYSE:LRN): Yesterday, Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle signed into law SB 396 which makes online public charter schools a permanent part of Wisconsin education law. The following is a statement by Ron Packard, Founder and CEO of K12 Inc.:

"This is a great day for the children, parents, and teachers who use the K12 program in Wisconsin's online public schools. This new law makes online public charter schools a permanent part of the Wisconsin education system and eliminates the uncertainty created by the December 5, 2007 Court of Appeals decision.

I commend the Wisconsin Legislature and the Governor for working together to ensure online public school options can continue benefiting Wisconsin children.

Anonymous said...

And what do you know- Gerald Bracey has something to say about all this -


Knowledge Universe and Virtual Schools:
Educational Breakthrough or
Digital Raid on the Public Treasury?
Gerald W. Bracey

Anonymous said...

K12 inc is a division of knowledge universe -
this was written by GBracey and he is right on with his comments.

The Creation of Knowledge Universe
Brothers Michael and Lowell Milken, together with Oracle founder Larry Ellison,
created Knowledge Universe in 1996, initially investing $1.5 billion in the enterprise.
Michael Milken has stated that the idea for something like Knowledge Universe actually
came to him when he saw the devastation of the Watts riots in Los Angeles in 1965.
Returning to the University of California at Berkeley, he changed his major from
mathematics to business, the story goes, and decided to dedicate himself to social
progress through the development of what came to be called “human capital,” a concept
put forth by a friend, Gary Becker, who would later (1992) win the Nobel Prize in