Saturday, November 27, 2010

Teach for America and the Problem of Study Laudering

Two sides to every argument and the following from makes this abundantly clear.

..... the report conveniently highlights two problems: Our field’s pathetic and weaponized approach to research and the problem of “study laundering.”

Pile ‘em up: The two big takeaways of this report from the Great Lakes Center is that retention of TFA teachers is bad and the program’s results are, at best, mixed. There are substantial problems with both findings.

see the link for lots more....

Pointless Waiting
for School Directors to raise any objections to MGJ's apparent misdemeanors and felony

I was actually writing letters to the Seattle School Directors in expectation they would act on the Superintendent's apparent misdemeanors and felony, which misled the Public and perhaps some Public officials.

WOW.... I must be a country boy born yesterday.

OK after analyzing Director Carr's action on TfA. Even naive Dan finally gets it.

The executive summary of the report Seattle School Director Sherry Carr referenced, made some major points. Ms. Carr reported on half of one point (marked with blue below) while neglecting everything else.
The report contained the following:

The evidence suggests that districts may benefit from using TFA personnel to fill teacher shortages when the available labor pool consists of temporary or substitute teachers or other novice alternatively and provisionally certified teachers likely to leave in a few years. Nevertheless, if educational leaders plan to use TFA teachers as a solution to the problem of shortages, they should be prepared for constant attrition and the associated costs of ongoing recruitment and training.

A district whose primary goal is to improve achievement should explore and fund other educational reform that may have more promise such as universal preschool, mentoring programs pairing novice and expert teachers, elimination of tracking, and reduction in early grade class size.

It is therefore recommended that policymakers and districts:

Support TFA staffing only when the alternative hiring pool consists of uncertified and emergency teachers or substitutes.

 Consider the significant recurring costs of TFA, estimated at over $70,000 per recruit, and press for a five-year commitment to improve achievement and reduce re-staffing.

Invest strategically in evidence-based educational reform options that build long-term capacity in schools.

As Director Carr picked only the Blue from the Maroon, it seems she wished to mislead the public.

Director Carr's action reminds me of Director Sunquist's statement about supposedly pouring over "Foundations for Success" the National Math Advisory Panel's final report in search of guidance and then making his decision to approve the adoption of Key Curriculum Press's "Discovering Series" on May 6, 2009. This resulted in a 4-3 Board decision, which was "Remanded back to the Board" for failure to include evidence submitted by the Public in decision-making by Judge Julie Spector on 2-4-10, which MGJ appealed on 3-5-10 with support from Directors Carr, Martin-Morris, Sundquist, and Maier.

At the school board meeting on Feb 3, 2010 Director Sundquist read aloud paragraph 23 from NMAP page xxii:

All-encompassing recommendations that instruction should be entirely “student centered” or “teacher directed” are not supported by research. If such recommendations exist, they should be rescinded. If they are being considered, they should be avoided. High-quality research does not support the exclusive use of either approach.

Yet on the next page, Director Sundquist missed paragraph 27:

Explicit instruction with students who have mathematical difficulties has shown consistently positive effects on performance with word problems and computation. Results are consistent for students with learning disabilities, as well as other students who perform in the lowest third of a typical class. By the term explicit instruction, the Panel means that teachers provide clear models for solving a problem type using an array of examples, that students receive extensive practice in use of newly learned strategies and skills, that students are provided with opportunities to think aloud (i.e., talk through the decisions they make and the steps they take), and that students are provided with extensive feedback.

This finding does not mean that all of a student’s mathematics instruction should be delivered in an explicit fashion. However, the Panel recommends that struggling students receive some explicit mathematics instruction regularly. Some of this time should be dedicated to ensuring that these students possess the foundational skills and conceptual knowledge necessary for understanding the mathematics they are learning at their grade level.

On August 24, 2009 Director Sundquist wrote the following to me:

Dan: thank you for copying me on your message. On page three of your letter you state:

"The National Math Advisory Panel recommends against the EDM type of spiraling. The NMAP also recommends “Explicit Instruction” for those struggling to learn math."

I have read the NMAP report, and I recall the first point about spiraling, but not the second about explicit instruction. In fact, my recollection is that the NMAP was quite pointed in stating that high-quality research does not support the exclusive use of either teacher-directed instruction or student-centered instruction (p.45).

I would appreciate it if you would refer me to the citation in the NMAP that you are using as the basis for your second claim above.

Thanks in advance for any assistance you can provide.

Best wishes,

Steve Sundquist
Seattle School Board, District 6


To which I quickly responded:


The fact that apparently you missed #27 in the NMAP recommendations about instructional practices on page xxiii is disturbing to me. However, it is not nearly as disturbing as the fact that the HS adoption committee did not use the NMAP final report in making decisions about the high school math adoption. The district provided 1200 pages of materials to attorney Keith Scully in the coming court action involving the appeal of the May 6, 2009 HS adoption decision brought by McLaren, Mas [sic Mass], and Porter. The NMAP final report "Foundations for Success" was not among the materials used by the committee.

Thus the people you represent get to spend thousands of dollars to appeal the decision of the board to adopt materials recommended by a clearly stacked committee, which failed to use the most relevant applicable document.

The Central Administration wishes to continue a failing math plan rather than do it right and four board members assisted the administration in doing so. Check the data for Seattle's k-12 Black and Hispanic Students, read NMAP, read Kirschner-Sweller- Clark, read Sweller on Geary, read Hattie's "Visible Learning" ...... Ten years of ethnically discriminatory math practices straight out of the Bergeson administration continue because the board allows it.

27) Explicit instruction with students who have mathematical difficulties has shown consistently positive effects on performance with word problems and computation. etc. etc.


The result:
I have rarely heard from Director Sundquist since.

He did however voice support on 3-5-10 for the MGJ appeal of the Spector decision and now we wait for the 2011 Spring session of Washington Appeals Court Division I.

I referred to Helig's June 2010 Study as peer-reviewed. While it addresses peer-reviewed articles, the study "Teach For America: A Review of the Evidence" is NOT peer reviewed.

More reasons to Fire MGJ and
Recall several School Directors

The peer reviewed study on TfA and my letter to Director Sherry Carr contain more reasons to fire Seattle Schools' Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson and Recall several Seattle School Board directors.
Teach for America a False Promise


On this question, studies indicate that the students of novice TFA teachers perform significantly less well in reading and mathematics than those of credentialed beginning teachers.

From: Teach For America: A Review of the Evidence
by Julian Vasquez Heilig -- University of Texas at Austin
Su Jin Jez, Ph.D. -- California State University, Sacramento
June 2010

Dear Seattle School Director Sherry Carr,

You stated:

"One of the research documents said: If you are looking to close the achievement gap, it is important to invest strategically in evidence based "reform options". I believe that we are doing that through the work in our strategic plan".

This appears to be another example of cherry-picking from a research document.

Thank you for referring me to the research document above to which you referred, the Helig study published in June 2010.

I am really confused as to your motivation in voting for TfA. This seemed like a great amount of effort to do absolutely "ZERO" to address the SPS's ongoing failure to provide proven effective instructional materials and practices with effective interventions for those students struggling in Low Income schools.

Why the Board allows the administration to fraudulently mislead the public on proposals like NTN, and then the Board votes for proposals like NTN and TfA as an answer to under achievement is bewildering.

You and five other directors voted for TfA.

Now you send me a peer reviewed study published in June 2010, which contains numerous reasons to vote against TfA and NOT a single reason for bringing TfA to Seattle.

What can be your justification in voting for TfA? You just sent me the title to a "Peer Reviewed Paper" that clearly demonstrates TfA should NOT be in Seattle? Why did you vote for TfA?

As I said in my testimony another experiment likely to damage students is not needed.

Please explain this.
As things stand without a credible explanation this 6-1 TfA Board decision will likely be appealed in Superior Court.


Danaher M. Dempsey, Jr.

Here is the Executive Summary of
Teach For America: A Review of the Evidence
by J. V. Heilig and Su Jin Jez.


The Board no longer amazes me with its failure to make decisions based on evidence because this has become a recurrent practice.

The abdication of duty on the part of the Board collectively and Directors individually to confront the Superintendent over her frequent deceptions continues and grows worse.

Many members of the Public will continue to seek "Recall" of Directors that so often fail to act in the best interests of the students in the Seattle Schools.

I referred to Helig's June 2010 Study as peer-reviewed. While it addresses peer-reviewed articles, the study "Teach For America: A Review of the Evidence" is NOT peer reviewed.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The District is Building
a Pyramid of Lies
around Dr. Goodloe-Johnson's
fradulent statements

Complex lies from the SPS.

MGJ's letter of Nov. 23, explaining the 17% fiasco is framed on the District's News Page HERE.
It follows:

College and Career Readiness of Seattle Public Schools Graduates

In 2008, Seattle Public Schools (SPS) published a conservative data point aimed at determining the percent of students that graduate from SPS ready for a 4-year college. This specific data point is complex and one that districts across the state and the country grapple with as they try to quantify college and career ready.

{{Do all Districts across the state and country misrepresent data like the Seattle Central Administration does? On June 4, 2008 in the Strategic Plan, the SPS did NOT publish a conservative data point aimed at ready for a four year college. A statistic of 17% was presented as "Graduates meeting High School credit requirement for four-year colleges".}}

College readiness measures can be defined in multiple ways: the minimum requirements necessary to graduate high school, minimum requirements necessary to apply to a 4-year college, minimum requirements to successfully enroll in a college or university or meeting the necessary requirements to succeed in and graduate from college.

{{However, when the Superintendent stated in her Strategic Plan on June 4, 2008: "Graduates meeting High School credit requirement for four-year colleges = 17%". She was lying and misleading both the Board and the Public. This is fraud..}}

For additional information, please review this letter to the community from Superintendent Goodloe-Johnson. The letter describes the process of agreeing on the current definition of the measure and sets this topic in the context of our goal of all SPS students graduating ready for college and career.

So does this supposed process of agreeing on "the current measure" ... retroactively make that "the measure" presented on June, 4, 2008 and following?
NO WAY!! ...... NO WAY!!

The "Superintendent" takes lying to a whole new level and the Board is apparently inert or endorsing her fraudulent behavior.

Broad Alum Busted in Seattle Public School Scandal for Lying to Advance Corporate Ed Reform

As reported on Schools Matter, Seattle deception goes big time as we've made it to the East Coast.


Note to Brad Bernetek, Maria Goodloe-Johnson, Susan Enfield, and the Seattle School Board:

"To improve a system requires the intelligent application of relevant statistics."
-- W. Edwards Deming (1900-1993)

Statistics that one makes up to mislead others to follow an agenda are not relevant.
Fraud and Forgery are often found to be Class C Felonies.

MGJ what she wrote and what she should have written.

In the interest of transparency rather than more deception this posting is made.

Unfortunately the Superintendent wrote the following:

November 23, 2010

Dear Seattle Public Schools Community,

In 2008, Seattle Public Schools (SPS) published a conservative data point aimed at determining the percent of students that graduate from SPS ready for a 4-year college. This specific data point is complex and one that districts across the state and the country grapple with as they try to quantify college and career ready. College readiness measures can be defined in multiple ways: the minimum requirements necessary to graduate high school, minimum requirements necessary to apply to a 4-year college, minimum requirements to successfully enroll in a college or university or meeting the necessary requirements to succeed in and graduate from college.

At the time we calculated that 17% of our students graduated from SPS college and career ready, we used a very aggressive standard to determine the percent of SPS students that were college ready based on our understanding of what is needed to be admitted and succeed in college, not simply the minimum requirements to apply. (i.e. graduating high school in four years, successful completion of four years of mathematics, successful completion of three years of science and earning a letter grade of “B” or higher in each of their core classes).

This specific data point sparked significant public dialogue. In 2009, we chose not to include this statistic in the initial release of the district scorecard because we wanted to review it further; we publicly announced it was under review. In 2010, after additional research and discussion, we revised the statistic on the district scorecard using reduced math and science requirements as well as a reduction in the minimum core GPA from a letter grade of “B” to a “C” that are more in line with the Washington Higher Education Coordinating Board (HECB) minimum requirements to apply to college. Further, at the 11/17/2010 board workshop, the district stated that the statistic changed and provided an explanation.

In retrospect, this review should have been accelerated and we should have been more proactive, both internally with staff and externally with key stakeholders, when the original statistic was held back in 2009 and was under further review. In addition, we should have been clearer that this represented a standard more rigorous than the minimum HECB requirements.

Our five-year strategic plan, Excellence for All, explicitly calls out ambitious and aggressive goals for our students because as a district we believe that all of our students can meet these standards. The primary purpose of the plan is to shine a light on an array of student achievement data so that the community could have a conversation about the progress of our students and so that we could collectively act on it. We thought then, and continue to believe now, that it is critical to communicate measures related to high school readiness for college and careers. This measure was of one of ten measures focusing on high school test results and college and career readiness. We have rigorously evaluated this measure and determined, for accountability purposes, that it is more appropriate to align our measure with the more common definition of the minimum entrance requirements as defined by the Washington HECB.

The efforts in which we are engaged are critical to the success of our students. We envision a school system in which all of our students graduate from high school, meet the requirements for, and are successful in, college and are career ready. We remain confident that we will achieve these goals. We also look forward to further communication and discussion on the district scorecard and school reports at our upcoming regional meetings Regional_Meetings_School_Reports, co-sponsored by the Seattle Council PTSA. The first meeting is scheduled for November 29. I also encourage you to email me directly at if you have any additional questions or concerns.


Maria L. Goodloe-Johnson, Ph.D.

MGJ thanks so much for 6 paragraphs of Blah, Blah, Blah, which completed distorted what occurred.

The Superintendent in the interests of complete transparency should have written this:

November 23, 2010

Dear Students, Parents, and others in the Seattle Community,

I misled the Public by publishing fraudulent information on page 11 of my Strategic Plan on June 4, 2008.

Graduates meeting High School credit requirement for four-years colleges = 17%

I shall attempt to continue to try to deceive you, especially in regard to the 17% matter. Just read my 6 paragraphs if you have any doubt.

I have the Board in my "Back Pocket" and a contract with three more years to run.

Go away and stop bothering me. I find public testimonies an annoyance and school activism distasteful.

Everyone Accountable,

Maria Goodloe-Johnson, PhD.

You too can be a Parrot for Baloney.
Training is available from LEV
The League of Education Voters

You can be trained to become a poorly informed "faux activist", which will enable you to parrot refrains for others.


The League of Education Voters announces Workshops for coming January activist training:

As you may know, we’ll be hosting a training on Saturday, Jan. 8th for folks who are interested in learning more about become advocates for education.

* Find out more details here.
* Register here.

We’ve been busy brainstorming a list of possible workshops to present. Here are some of the ones that we are considering now, but we’d love your feedback.

What do you want to learn about?

What information and strategies would be beneficial to you?

Leave a comment below or send an email to our state field director Kelly Munn with your thoughts and suggestions.

* Innovative Schools: Going beyond the discussion of charter schools. How can our schools in Washington really innovate and make significant changes for the better?

* Peer-to-Peer Roundtable on Advocacy: Learn from your peers based on their experiences, successes and pitfalls.

* Keeping Ed Reform On Track: Especially facing this tough fiscal situation, how do we keep moving ahead?

* Achievement Gap: What is it? Why does it matter? How can we make significant strides?

* School Year/Class Size: What about a longer school year? What role does class size really play in learning?

* Media/Blogging/Social Media in Advocacy: How can you be an effective voice for change?

* Community Values in Contract Negotiations: Bringing the community’s voice into contract negotiations.

* Basic Advocacy: Don’t know where to start?

* Budget: We’ll give you the latest figures and forecasts for what cuts might be coming to ed.

* How Do Things Really Work in Olympia ?
Toss out the civics lessons. How do things really get done in the Legislature?

The views below are brought to you by Mike.
(and do not necessarily reflect those of blog management)

Mikes writes:

There probably are things one can learn by attending events like this; but one should attend with a very critical eye. Many groups nowadays (like Stand For Children, and the Parent Revolution) don’t bill themselves with complete honesty. I’m not sure where LEV fits into that spectrum.

Some of these groups are not about empowering parents with the knowledge to find their own solutions (like WTM), but are instead “community organizing” organizations. Generally speaking, community organizing organizations primarily function not as disseminators of empowering knowledge, but rather as “agitators for action.” They want you to sign-on to their agenda.

Just for fun, let’s read between the lines of a few of LEV’s “possible workshops”, and employ some critical & higher-order thinking (analysis & speculation) as to what may be the real message.

1) Innovative Schools: Going beyond the discussion of charter schools. How can our schools in Washington really innovate and make significant changes for the better?

Translation- “We’re not in favor of charter schools, so let’s not talk about that. Come let us tell you what changes we want.”

2) Peer-to-Peer Roundtable on Advocacy: Learn from your peers based on their experiences, successes and pitfalls.

Translation- “We’ve got to convince these parents that these are complicated issues and they can’t be effective advocates on their own. They need to join their voices with ours to help us push our vision of change (Every Child, One Voice).”

3) Keeping Ed Reform On Track: Especially facing this tough fiscal situation, how do we keep moving ahead?

Comment- Moving ahead? Really!?! I thought we were falling behind.

Translation- “Pay no attention to that $13 trillion debt behind the curtain! More, more, more money is always the answer. We must do whatever we can to get more dollars into the hands of educrats.”

4) Achievement Gap: What is it? Why does it matter? How can we make significant strides?

Translation- “We can’t agitate for perpetual change without division and a crisis. Even though we speak against racism, we’ll divide by race, and ‘equity’ will be our crisis du jour. Those kids in the classroom aren’t individuals; they’re simply units of a sub-group. The disparity between these subgroups is a social injustice. The primary purpose of your tax-dollars and the primary job of your child’s teacher is to rectify these injustices.” Questions to consider- What’s the most efficient way to close the achievement gap? Bring up the masses at the bottom, or hold back the few at the top?

5) School Year/Class Size: What about a longer school year? What role does class size really play in learning?

Translation- “Pay no attention to the increased burden being placed on teachers, and ignore your intuition that smaller classes would be better for kids. Yes, smaller classes would afford each student more 1-on-1 direct instruction, but that’s not what kids need. Haven’t you read, students need to take ownership and be responsible for their own learning. Smaller class sizes are just too expensive. What kids need is less time at home with their parents. Even though what schools are doing isn’t working, they need to take your child earlier (pre-k) and keep them longer, to enable what isn’t working to work better. Got that?

6) Media/Blogging/Social Media in Advocacy: How can you be an effective voice for change?

Want to be a ‘squeaky wheel’ ?

We’ll not only teach you how,
we’ll also tell you what to 'squeak'


Too eager to wait for January training ...

Then on Dec 8, 2010

The Parent Revolution: Using Your Voice for Your Kids, Your Community and Our Future

Ben Austin, Executive Director of the Parent Revolution
Trise Moore, Advocate for Effective Family/School Partnerships for Federal Way Public Schools
Wednesday, December 8th at 5:30pm
Aki Kurose Middle School
3928 South Graham Street, Seattle

This event is free.
Childcare is provided.

* Please RSVP as seating is limited.


Who provides the funding for many of these organizations? I hope it is not the Taxpayer. Perhaps if one follows the money, one will find the real authors of the messages.

Anyone know anything about Parents for Student Success.

Hospitals Need Improvement :
....How about Seattle Schools?
Parallel Universes

Dave writes:
All human organizations have their problems and all have difficulties in rectifying them. See below for Medical Practice in Hospitals. While we wait for them to make improvements the best defense is an educated and alert consumer. Ditto for parents with kids in any school, public or private.

It sure would be nice if educated people like Tom Friedman would look a little deeper and not serve as a parrot for baloney like, “Tony Wagner, the Harvard-based education expert and author of “The Global Achievement Gap,” explains it this way. There are three basic skills that students need if they want to thrive in a knowledge economy: the ability to do critical thinking and problem-solving; the ability to communicate effectively; and the ability to collaborate.”

To thrive in a knowledge economy our children, first and foremost, need knowledge. If more people had more knowledge maybe we would see fewer events like the current financial crisis with so many bogus mortgages written. Maybe we wouldn’t have had the Gulf Oil spill. Maybe we wouldn’t have seen two space shuttles destroyed. Maybe the 787 wouldn’t be three years late. Maybe people would see through the bogus claims of Tony Wagner who don’t know how to teach basic math and writing knowledge/skills to low-income kids but would have us believe he and others like him are certain students need the 3 C’s and that they have any idea how to teach those skills. It’s a classic “change the subject” tactic.

Friedman would do better to spend less time rubbing elbows with the elites and more time in early elementary school classrooms so he wouldn’t get snookered by the “Harvard-based education experts” of the world.

From this NY Times article:

(1) Efforts to make hospitals safer for patients are falling short.

(2) Harm to patients was common and that the number of incidents did not decrease over time.

(3) The most common problems were complications from procedures or drugs and hospital-acquired infections.

(4) Medical mistakes caused as many as 98,000 deaths and more than one million injuries a year in the United States.

(5) Among the preventable problems .... were:
A.. severe bleeding during an operation,
B.. serious breathing trouble caused by a procedure that was performed incorrectly,
C.. a fall that dislocated a patient’s hip and damaged a nerve, and
D.. vaginal cuts caused by a vacuum device used to help deliver a baby.

(6) Programs to improve patient safety.....

But instead of improvements, the researchers found a high rate of problems.
A.. About 18 percent of patients were harmed by medical care, some more than once, and B.. 63.1 percent of the injuries were judged to be preventable.

(7) The findings were a disappointment but not a surprise.
Many of the problems were caused by the hospitals’ failure to:
A.. use measures that had been proved to avert mistakes and to prevent infections

“Until there is a more coordinated effort to implement those strategies proven beneficial, I think that progress in patient safety will be very slow,”

(8) An expert on hospital safety who was not associated with the study said the findings were a warning for the patient-safety movement. “We need to do more, and to do it more quickly,”

134,000 patients — experienced “adverse events” during hospital stays. The report said the extra treatment required as a result of the injuries could cost Medicare several billion dollars a year.

The researchers found 588 instances in which a patient was harmed by medical care, or 25.1 injuries per 100 admissions.

(9) Not all the problems were serious. Most were temporary and treatable.

For the most part, the reporting of medical errors or harm to patients is voluntary, and that “vastly underestimates the frequency of errors and injuries that occur,”

(10) “We need a monitoring system that is mandatory,”

The bottom line, he said, “is that preventable complications are way too frequent in American health care, and “it’s not a problem we’re going to get rid of in six months or a year.”

(11) The study made clear the difficulty in improving patients’ safety.

it was essential that hospitals be more open about reporting problems.

“What we know works in a general sense..... Right now you ought to be able to know the infection rate of every hospital in your community.”

For hospitals with poor scores, there should be consequences.

Seattle Schools a parallel Universe

(1) Efforts to improve student learning are falling short.

(2) As students progress through school, the percentage of skill deficient students increases.
{grade 3 math = 15% far below basic.... grade 10 math = 31% far below basic and in addition 7% no score}

(3) The most common problems are compounded by a lack of efficient effective interventions applied in a timely manner.

(4) Failure to provide effective interventions is confirmed by a 30+% drop out rate and high remediation rates for graduates entering post secondary programs.

(5) Among the preventable problems .... were:

A.. those caused by excessive use of minimally guided instruction

B.. an emphasis on process which neglected the learning of significant content and skills

C.. a failure to provide timely meaningful interventions

D.. ongoing failure to make evidence based decisions in regard to instructional materials and practices

E.. Continued use of faulty programs due to a failure to evaluate programs or the disconnection from results when evaluating the success of existing programs

F.. District's failure to realize that for anyone to become an expert in any meaningful activity requires effort and guided practice.

{To effectively think outside the Box ... it helps to know what is in the Box}

(6) Programs to improve student learning were attempted especially efforts to close Achievement Gaps

But instead of improvements, OSPI annual testing revealed:

A.. Large declines in Writing scores (Writers' Workshop has been emphasized)

B.. Continually widening Achievement Gaps in mathematics (except in middle school in 2010)

C.. Special Education Students, Limited English Speaking Students, and American Indian Students seem particularly ill served during the second full year of the Strategic Plan "Excellence for All".

(7) After three years of Dr, Goodloe-Johnson, the findings were a disappointment but not a surprise.

Many of the problems were caused by the Central Administration's and School Board's failure to:
A.. use evidence before making proposals and evaluate proposals through the use of evidence.

“Until there is a more coordinated effort to implement those instructional materials and practices proven to be effective in a coordinated way, strategies proven beneficial, any improvement in student learning will be very slow,”

(8) An expert on student learning who was not associated with the Seattle Central Administrative cabal said the findings were a warning for All Students and Parents. “We need much better instructional materials and practices with timely effective interventions quickly provided.”

Of every 45,000 students passing through the system approximately 15,000 are so severely effected by “adverse events” during their school years that they fail to graduate. The extra treatment in the form of post high school remediation is costly but the costs rest on the student and/or student's family not the Seattle Schools.

The researchers are finding that the high percentages of students unable to score above far below basic on OSPI annual tests are normally not reflected in those same students' course grades.

Particularly disturbing: Many 8th graders that scored "Far Below Basic" in 8th grade math were placed in the category "Ready for High School Math" on recently issued school report cards.

(9) Not all the problems were serious. Most would have been temporary if treated.

For the most part, the Strategic Plan despite increased spending is a colossal flop, that “vastly underestimates the District's failure to serve students and families.”

(10) “We need a monitoring system that can be productively used. Teacher judgment has been gradually replaced by high tech gizmos yet few if any effective interventions are provided in a timely manner.” The materials used in many k-8 subjects make providing meaningful interventions very difficult. A chaotic spiraling as in Everyday Math makes skill development very difficult.

The bottom line, “is that disruption to student learning may always occur, that's life, but the Chaotic Instructional approach to student learning in Seattle and actions of the School Board and Administration have been noticed by the State Auditor and are the subject of frequent legal action" and “it’s not a problem we’re going to get rid of until Superintendent Goodloe-Johnson leaves.

(11) The results made clear the difficulty in improving student learning under Superintendent Goodloe-Johnson.

It was essential that the school system be more open about reporting problems and stop the frequent deception of the public.

We know works in a general sense..... to improve student learning but the Board and the Central Administration refuse to use practices known to bring about improvement.”

For any ineffective Superintendent who deceives the public and violates laws, there should be consequences.

"What's Up" with the School Board directing the Superintendent? The School Board has seven directors and it has one employee, how can supervision be such a big problem?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Letter about the (17%) Fraud of 2.5 years & MORE LIES

SAO assistant audit manager, Tony Martinez, may have an interest in your response, in regard to the linked Seattle Times Truth Needle article.

by Linda Shaw.

Dear School Board President Michael DeBell,

The Strategic Plan, Excellence for All, at bottom of page 11 in the Table (this is .pdf page 14/55)

SPS Goals 2008 - 2013

Graduates meeting High School credit requirement for four-years colleges = 17%

This was done on June 4, 2008 .... so 2.5 years of Fraud.....

Brought to you by the Strategic Plan.

The Superintendent and Mr. Bernetek have mislead public officials; this is a gross misdemeanor at the minimum.

You now have substantial evidence from the production of the 3-12-2010 NTN Action Report of Forgery, a Class C Felony. Are any directors planning to fulfill their oath of office by taking appropriate action in regard to a Superintendent and some of her Team Members, who mislead public officials in violation of the law?

SAO assistant audit manager, Tony Martinez, may have an interest in your response.

Danaher M. Dempsey, Jr.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Recall sufficiency failure
and Judicial Activism

When people speak of legislation from the Bench they usually think of a Judge that has departed from what the law intends.

It is particularly interesting that the Washington laws, which govern Recall of public officials contain NO MENTION of INTENT. As case law has developed "Intent" has worked its way into how the court judges the sufficiency of a Recall Petition. This is a very convenient development for Seattle School Directors.

If you read the actual laws passed by the legislature there is no mention of intent. Kate Martin and Joy Anderson failed on 11-18-2010 in their attempted recall of The Seattle Directors who violate state laws on a fairly regular basis because Anderson and Martin failed to show intent on the part of the Directors to violate the law. How convenient for incumbents.

How is it that legislation passed by the legislature transforms itself into something other than the legislation passed by the legislature? How do court interpretations become case law that effectively shields Seattle School Directors from accountability for failing to follow laws?

It is time for the legislature to inform the courts that the legislation written has been corrupted by the Judiciary and the law should be enforced as written.

Arbitrary and Capricious :
Evidence not desired

Linked below are the declarations of four Directors submitted to the court on 11-17-2010.

These are the four directors that vocally supported MGJ's appeal of the Spector High School Math Adoption decision of 2-4-2010, which remanded the decision back to the Board with instructions to include all the evidence in decision-making.

It is interesting that Carr, Maier, and Sundquist state:

"I did not believe that considering any additional material would help me reach a decision on this difficult issue."

Right on ... why consider any information from the public even when ordered to by the court.

An interesting feature of these declarations is the use of the words "opinion" and "information". Never is the word evidence used. It seems there is no focus on making evidence based decisions by these directors. WOW!!! could these folks get any more arbitrary and capricious?

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A BIG DATA reporting Mistake

Richard writes:

I'm used to getting bad data from Kentucky's educators, but this time it's the NCES that messed up.

In a new set of web pages that accompanied the recent release of the 12th grade reading and math scores from 2009. the NCES included a graph supposedly showing the proficiency gaps between whites, blacks and Hispanics.

The only problem is they used the wrong numbers! They totally forgot to add in the kids who scored at or above NAEP "Advanced." The result is the black-white gap is understated for 2009 by a significant amount. The real gap is 30 percent larger than the gap shown on the graph.

For all the details, including graphs in living color:

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Those seeking recall
respond to Directors' declarations
but the petition for recall
is ruled insufficient.

Here are the Declarations of each director on 11-16-2010 or 11-17-2010 that were submitted on 11-17-2010:
Maier :: Carr :: Martin-Morris :: Sundquist

Here are the Responses, to the above four declarations, submitted by Ms. Anderson and Ms. Martin, who sought the recall:
Maier :: Carr :: Martin-Morris :: Sundquist

There may be typos etc. as there were only 24 hours to turn this around. Directors submitted on Nov 17, not November 15 as originally required. Anderson and Martin made Nov 15 filings as required. Anderson and Martin's responses to directors' declarations were submitted at the court hearing on Nov. 18th at 3:00 p.m.


Result = Anderson and Martin lost as they failed to show any director intended to violate a law.

There were legal violations taking place but those seeking recall failed to show intent.

Officer I was unaware I was driving 80 mph. Isn't 80 mph the speed limit in this county. --------- No intention and no awareness. What officer would argue with that?

Most every officer would issue a citation given that response from a driver, but that violation would be insufficient to "Recall" a Driver is my guess. Note recall applies to only elected officials.

Thanks to Directors submitting individual declarations on Nov. 17 to the court. There is even more evidence that points to how poorly each of those four directors do their job.


It is quite apparent that these directors consider lots of opinions but fail to evaluate facts and thereby do not produce evidence based decisions.

Of particular interest is that the directors apparently failed to notice the large amount of information that Mr. Dempsey submitted that was non math related.

Mr Maier wrote: (beginning at page 3 line 25)

Mr. Dempsey expressed his opinion that the District should not approve a contract with NTN because in his view the NTN model was not an effective way to teach math [Evidence is of little interest to most directors]. Mr. Dempsey's emails provided some standardized testing relating data in math from a number of NTN schools that he claimed supported his view. I considered the information and opinions submitted by Mr. Dempsey and others before I voted to approve the NTN contract. The services that were to be provided through NTN's Program [sic: should be Project] Based Learning approach were much broader than just the subject of math instruction.

It is clear that Director Maier fails to evaluate evidence or read my emails. What evidence did Mr. Maier use to make his decision to vote for the NTN contract?

(1) There was extensive evidence submitted to Director Maier that concerned poor results at established NTN schools in non-math subjects.

(2) Mr. Maier focuses on opinions. Where is the data to contradict the evidence I and others presented?

(3) Where is Mr. Maier's judgment on the evidence submitted to him? A broad dismissal by way of "data that he claimed supported his view" lacks a judgment from Mr. Maier on the data.

(4) Since in #7 of his declaration, Mr. Maier is confused about San Diego, for there is no NTN school there. So Directors could not have visited it and he is incorrect in believing that I submitted only data related to math, how does he make decisions?

(5) On 2-3-10 Director Maier stated the the NTN contract was about Project Based Learning and that alone would be sufficient for his vote.

(6) It seems likely NTN was just another "Arbitrary and Capricious" approval by a 4-3 vote. This time it involved tampering with evidence and the production of a forged document.

Judge Inveen ruled the petition insufficient for recall but thanked the Activists for bringing issues to light that would otherwise be buried from Public View.

The equivalent of the "Golden Apple" for Martin & Anderson from Judge Inveen,
while Maier et al. deserve Schrammies.

Note the Board did it again on 11-17-10 with the approval of TfA .... based on happy fairy-tales and total disregard of evidence.

The representative for the directors at the recall hearing, Lawrence Ransom, stated that the directors were being abused by a stream of litigation. Kathleen Martin responded that the directors continually abuse their constituents with their failure to make evidence based decisions. ....humm... looks like more litigation is likely as the directors just refuse to use evidence and continue making "arbitrary and capricious" decisions.

-- Dan

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Directors respond to Recall Sufficiency Hearing for 11-18-2010

Check it out HERE.

My TfA letter written to Seattle School Board

Here is the letter:

Here are excerpts from the letter.

If this TfA action is for the benefit of Seattle's students then closing of the achievement gaps is the only possible reason provided for bringing provisionally certified teachers with very little training into classrooms.

Please note that the CAO disclosed that the District has no centralized plan for effective Interventions.

The average of All students and the average of most every ethnic group declined on the 4th grade and 7th grade OSPI annual test of Writing. The District is completely failing to serve the needs of far too many students in writing. Is "Writer's Workshop" being examined as a possible cause?

Math scores are still abysmal in grade 4 and getting worse for many groups of educationally disadvantaged learners.

The Board's decision to illegally approve the non-competitive bid NTN contract, in which the Superintendent and CAO misinformed both the Public and the Board with the bogus action report of 3-12-2010 is further evidence of the disregard for so many educationally disadvantaged learners in the District.

Project Based Learning and Problem Based Learning have been devastating for most educationally disadvantaged learners in mathematics.

The District had NO Community engagement of the TfA contract. The vendor’s engagement can hardly be the District's engagement.

Note: the filing of the evidence in the NTN appeal apparently lacked the Actual Anderson memo sent to the Board. This memo was obtained through public records requests.

The Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson should be fired with cause for the misleading action reports she and her CAO produced in regard to the proposal to have the Board approve the NTN contract. The Action Reports used on 2-3-2010 and the 3-12-2010 Action Report used on 4-7-2010 each had serious flaws that would mislead any member of the public that read them. The 3-12-2010 Action report was fraudulently produced by referencing a memo as sent to the board, when in fact the memo sent to the board was NOT referenced in construction of the memo.

The Board might also begin thinking about the District's defense in various class action lawsuits about the disparate impact on members of various groups of the failed education practices of Seattle Schools.

Tonight is an opportunity to begin to end experimentation on Low Income and Special Education students. Do NOT miss it. Reject the obviously discriminatory TfA contract proposal.

Why only marginally prepared provisionally certified teachers for low-income schools, when both low-income and non-low-income SPS schools lack Highly Qualified Teachers in the same ratio 1 out of 200?


Danaher M. Dempsey, Jr.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Teach for America: Testimony 11-17-2010

Is there any evidence the Board and the Superintendent listen?

WELL .....

Here I go again ..... Another Seattle School Board testimony.

Directors, I am Dan Dempsey

Is teaching a profession?

Last Board meeting testimonies of those opposed to TfA were filled with evidence and data, while those supporting TfA told isolated stories.

Writers are taught to use evidence and logical arguments to make points persuasively; BUT the Board regularly dismisses logical arguments and is persuaded by fairy-tales.

Board decision-makers often ignored logical persuasive arguments based on peer-reviewed research and extensive studies, instead preferring bogus research based on cherry picked data and anecdotal yarns.

"To improve a system requires the intelligent application of relevant data." (--W. Edwards Deming) No wonder Seattle's Math and Writer’s Workshop produced such poor results. Check the data and Look at your selection process.

TfA is another bizarre proposal:
Based on a non-existent shortage of highly qualified teachers and Stretching the law on conditional certification to supposedly deal with achievement gaps.

Please remember Cleveland’s unmonitored three-year school wide damaging math experiment. DO NOT perform another unproven experiment on low-income students.

Valid relevant research shows TfA will not close achievement gaps in Seattle.

2007 …. Everyday Math was adopted. Directors believed Administrative fairy-tales that Everyday would eliminate the math achievement Gaps in 5 years. The GAPS expanded.

2009 …. High School Math adoption: the Board excluded 300 pages of evidence and refused to obey a court order to include it, and the math achievement GAPS expanded..

In most organizations the rise of Info-Tech greatly thinned the levels of middle management. Front-line workers now have access to research and if needed, can make data based decisions. Yet in the Seattle Schools, a bloated inefficient Central Administration puts forth bizarre expensive proposals, apparently based only on politics, which lead to decisions that adversely effect the performance of teachers and the learning of students.

Treat teaching as a profession. Look at medicine or automotive.
Training in school and experience in the field are required.

Rank beginners with little training are NOT allowed to work as registered Nurses or Doctors. No one hires a total neophyte to rebuild an auto engine.

Reject the Teach for America contract proposal. Low-Income students deserve much better.

To improve Board decision-making and narrow Seattle's achievement GAPS, ...
tomorrow at 3:00 PM in Superior Court,
there will be a Recall hearing for Directors Sundquist, Carr, Martin-Morris, and Maier.

Thank you,

Once again little evidence of listening. Vote to Approve was 6-1.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Seattle School Board Recall Update
Wanted 32,000 valid signatures of Seattle Voters


The Directors have responded HERE.

The Recall Sufficiency Hearing will be
Thursday, November 18th 2010
at 3:00 PM in Judge Laura Inveen's courtroom W-864
of the King County Courthouse.

Briefs (see below) were filed by the persons seeking the Recall of each of four Seattle School Directors. These briefs deal with the sufficiency of the charges brought against each School Director in the Ballot Synopsis (see below) produced by the King County Prosecutor. We expect to have petitions approved at a superior court sufficiency hearing and then to print petitions and begin gathering signatures for the recall of each of four Seattle school directors after Thanksgiving.

To force a Recall election a minimum of 32,000 signatures for each director to be recalled must be gathered from voters registered in the City of Seattle and submitted on or before April 30th 2011.

A single voter may sign all four petitions.

Below are the Ballot Synopses from the Prosecutor's Office and the Briefs to filed by those seeking Recall.

Steven Sundquist
Ballot Synopsis

Harium Martin-Morris
Ballot Synopsis

Sherry Carr
Ballot Synopsis

Peter Maier
Ballot Synopsis

A recall election occurs 45 to 60 days after the validation of the required number of signatures need for recall. A recall election has only one candidate and the voter is asked to vote either for discharge from current office or retention of the previously elected official.

The Current terms of these four Directors will end in November unless they are Recalled and Discharged from Office. The Primary election for these four positions will be in August 2011. Candidates for office need to declare in early June. If a Director is recalled the balance of their term will be filled by an appointed director.

Summary of the possible Forgery in Seattle Schools $800,000 New Tech contract approval

Summary of the possible Forgery:
Essential background:
On 1-29-2010 the Superintendent received two memos from Eric M. Anderson, a Gates Data Fellow, in the Seattle Schools' Research, Evaluation, and Assessment division. Dr. Anderson is a real statistician and knows statistics well.

One of his two memos was more complete than the other. It analyzed 8 schools that someone else had given him to analyze. This memo was forwarded to the School Board on 2-02-2010. I shall refer to it as the Authentic Memo.

The other memo was not sent to the School Board. I refer to it as the Draft Memo, as it was less complete and was not sent to the school board.

The Superintendent claimed to have written the Action Report of 3-12-2010 using the Authentic Memo but this was untrue. She used the Draft Memo and thus deceived the Public and perhaps the Board as well.

RCW 9A.60.010 Definitions
The following definitions and the definitions of RCW 9A.56.010 are applicable in this chapter unless the context otherwise requires:

(1) "Written instrument" means: (a) Any paper, document, or other instrument containing written or printed matter or its equivalent; or (b) any access device, token, stamp, seal, badge, trademark, or other evidence or symbol of value, right, privilege, or identification;

(2) "Complete written instrument" means one which is fully drawn with respect to every essential feature thereof;

(3) "Incomplete written instrument" means one which contains some matter by way of content or authentication but which requires additional matter in order to render it a complete written instrument;

(4) To "falsely make" a written instrument means to make or draw a complete or incomplete written instrument which purports to be authentic, but which is not authentic either because the ostensible maker is fictitious or because, if real, he did not authorize the making or drawing thereof;

(5) To "falsely complete" a written instrument means to transform an incomplete written instrument into a complete one by adding or inserting matter, without the authority of anyone entitled to grant it;

(6) To "falsely alter" a written instrument means to change, without authorization by anyone entitled to grant it, a written instrument, whether complete or incomplete, by means of erasure, obliteration, deletion, insertion of new matter, transposition of matter, or in any other manner;

(7) "Forged instrument" means a written instrument which has been falsely made, completed, or altered.

RCW 9A.60.020 Forgery
(1) A person is guilty of forgery if, with intent to injure or defraud:

(a) He falsely makes, completes, or alters a written instrument or;

(b) He possesses, utters, offers, disposes of, or puts off as true a written instrument which he knows to be forged.


The Action Report of 3-12-2010 stated that it was based on a memo sent to the School Board on 1-29-2010. There was no memo sent to the Board on 1-29-2010. The only Eric M. Anderson memo sent to the Board was on 2-02-2010, which contained 8 schools and the paragraph:

Since the data is mixed, the primary question is whether Seattle Public Schools believes strongly in the Research based NTN learning model. Success will more than likely depend on the quality of program implementation. Knowing ahead of time that the NTN model does not guarantee strong results only enhances the degree to which the burden falls on the district and the schools to achieve success.

The Superintendent did not use that memo sent to the School Board. She used an earlier Draft Memo that was never sent to the School Board to write the action report statements on page two of the report. The evidence submitted to the Court to satisfy RCW 28A 645.020 (RCW 28A 645.020 requires the complete transcipt of evidence used by the Board to make an appealed decision to be submitted to the court within 20 days of the appeal filing and that filing is to be certified to be correct) included the Draft Memo, on which the Action Report was based, masquerading as the memo sent to the Board.

The reason for the substitution of Draft Memo in place of Authentic Memo is likely because an $800,000 bid was being sought without competitive bidding and if the authentic original memo had been used to construct the Action Report, the public and the Board would have been fully aware that the product and/or service for which a "sole-source" purchase was sought was clearly a substandard product and/or service.

In addition, Eric M. Anderson was provided a list of schools by someone on which to base his analysis. This list did not include established New Tech Schools: Welby in Colorado or BizTech in Portland, which are extremely poor performers.
Also only 10 of 41 New Tech schools were STEM focused and none of the six schools in California were STEM schools. The memos apparently assume that all NTN schools are STEM focused when only 25% are STEM focused. The original Action Report used on 2-3-10 (in a contract approval abandoned by the District as the action report failed to match the approved contract) incorrectly stated that 2/3 of NTN schools were STEM focused.

Here is the

Initial Brief filed on October 25, 2010
in the appeal of the NTN contract approved by a vote of 4-3 on April 7, 2010, with Directors Carr, Martin-Morris, Sundquist, and Maier voting for approval. Directors DeBell, Smith-Blum, and Patu voted against NTN contract approval.

Linked here is: Public records request confirming that the "Draft Memo" used by Dr. Goodloe-Johnson in constructing the Action Report of 3-12-2010 was NEVER sent to the Board.

Authentic Anderson Memo LINK HERE

Draft Memo that masqueraded as original LINK HERE

It appears that the Superintendent and perhaps her Chief Academic Officer
under RCW 9A.60.020 on Forgery
(1) Are likely guilty of forgery as, with intent to defraud,

(a) one or both of them perhaps falsely made, a written instrument: the School Board Action Report of March 12, 2010, by using a memo other than the memo sent to the School Board.

This forged report likely facilitated the purchase of an $800,000 contract for services, which had been portrayed incorrectly by that School Board Action Report.


Additionally, the Superintendent, in failing to properly quote what are the most damning parts of the Anderson Memo forwarded to the Board, seems to be guilty of violating RCW 9A.76.175.

RCW 9A.76.175 Making a false or misleading statement to a public servant.

A person who knowingly makes a false or misleading material statement to a public servant is guilty of a gross misdemeanor. "Material statement" means a written or oral statement reasonably likely to be relied upon by a public servant in the discharge of his or her official powers or duties.

It is the Superintendent's duty to make truthful, complete statements to her supervisors (the Directors), and a crime to make false, misleading statements to same.

Shakedown: The Current Conspiracy against the American Public School Parent, Student, and Teacher.

The above shakedown is similar to but not the same as

Shakedown: The Continuing Conspiracy Against the American Taxpayer (Hardcover)
by Steven Malanga.

In his book Mr. Malanga speaks of how the Government has financed an entire "Cottage Industry of Activists" for causes that advocate for what he sees as the Shakedown of the American taxpayer. I see that he makes a strong case and do not disagree with him.

I think a similar case can be built around

Shakedown: The Current Conspiracy against the American Public School Parent, Student, and Teacher.

This shakedown is financed by foundations and other forces (often business related) that finance the faux grassroots organizations that pose as pushing for Better Public Schools, while neglecting the significant data that shows what they advocate for is very ill advised.

The Obama/Duncan "Race to the Top" is a perfect example of this Shakedown. It is founded on attempting to define problems and then mandate particular actions as the solutions to these problems. The real problem with "RttT" is that while the problems defined may in fact be real, unfortunately the changes advocated are NOT solutions.

We now have an increasing number of privately financed faux grassroots organizations pushing for what "The Billionaire Boys Club" desires.

Four Seattle School Directors have become "textbook like" examples of voting for proposals, which have no rational basis for selection. Their reasons for voting to approve are regularly based on anecdotes, while they ignore the evidence, which frequently shows the extremely poor performance of the programs for which they vote.

My investigation into this bizarre behavior by school directors began on May 30th 2007 when the School Directors voted for Everyday Math because they trusted their hired "education expert professionals" choosing to trust the Chief Academic Officer at that time Carla Santorno and the Math Program manager Rosalind Wise. This was a classic example of to hell with the data, we prefer to believe in fairy-tales.
See fairy-tale and the facts at end of article.

Things are now substantially worse with the Seattle's Superintendent Dr. Maria Goodloe-Johnson (hired July 2007) and the four directors elected in Fall 2007.
{Note State Audit report had a huge number of findings showing a wide variety of failings (July 2010) and then the Board by a vote of 5-2 extended the Superintendent's contract from two more years to three more years.}

On Feb. 4, 2010 the Board was found to have excluded evidence in making the HS Math Adoption decision of May 2009 to buy $800,000 worth of math textbooks and spend $400,000 on professional development for faculty in the use of these defective books. The District then refused to reconsider the decision using all the evidence and appealed the ruling to Appellate court. This appeal will likely be heard in Spring 2011. The Seattle high school students are now in their second year using these books. Tenth grade testing on the Washington State Math High School Performance Exam demonstrated that the year to year change in scores for Black, Hispanic, and Limited English speaking students was worse than the state average change for each of those categories of students (by the amount below the state). Black student math pass rate was 12.50% ( -1.90% ), Hispanic student pass rate was 24.20% ( -2.80%), and Limited English Speaking student pass rate was 7.00% ( -5.40%)> .

As if defying a Superior Court Order to use all the evidence in remaking a flawed decision was not bad enough, things have now apparently eroded to "Forgery".

The Superintendent and the Chief Academic Officer apparently produced a School Board Action Report (see page 2 of report) by using a "Forged" memo as source material. This Action Report was for the $800,000 New Tech Network contract. When the contract was appealed, the District apparently submitted the "Forged" memo in place of the actual memo, and in the process apparently did not submit the actual memo on which the Action Report was supposedly based. The Board did not certify the evidence submitted to the court was correct as required by state law.

This seems to be typical of what is going on in the Current Conspiracy against the American Public School Parent, Student, and Teacher.

Since there are apparently no forces with vast resources advocating for the American Public School Parent, Student, and Teacher, the only solution is self-defense.

Immediate steps to take:
(1) Oppose the TfA contract proposal at the Seattle School Board meeting on Wednesday November 17 at the JSCEE at 3rd and Lander at 6:00 PM.
You can express your opposition by writing to the school board at

(2) If we are successful in the "Sufficiency Hearing" for the Recall of four school directors on November 18th, please join in the effort to gather at least 32,000 valid signatures of Seattle registered voters on the recall petition. Here is the current form of the recall synopsis.

If you would prefer a Republic where the citizens interests are protected by laws, it appears your action is needed to oppose the current ruling oligarchy. So get moving or don't.

The fairy-tale if you adopt Everyday Math the Math achievement gaps at grade four on WASL testing will be eliminated in four to five years. -- Carla Santorno spring 2007 referring to WASL data looking at GAPS 4th grade math from 2005.

Here are those Gaps in grade 4 math by ethnic Group.
Group Score minus White Student score shows how far below the ethnic group is below the white group each year. Everyday Math went into use for the 2007-2008 school year.
So what do those Gaps look like after three years of EDM use?

Note American Indian Students have a larger gap after three years of Everyday Math use.

American Indian Students
-30.30% .... 2004-05 WASL
-28.60% .... 2005-06 WASL
-30.50% .... 2006-07 WASL
-30.20% .... 2007-08 WASL
-32.20% .... 2008-09 WASL
-36.90% .... 2009-10 MSP

Asian/Pacific students had a sharp gap reduction in 2009-2010.

Asian/Pacific Islander Students
-19.10% .... 2004-05 WASL
-9.70% .... 2005-06 WASL
-13.10% .... 2006-07 WASL
-11.40% .... 2007-08 WASL
-14.90% .... 2008-09 WASL
-6.50% .... 2009-10 MSP

The Black Student Gap is larger and completely unacceptable.

Black Students
-46.50% .... 2004-05 WASL
-44.70% .... 2005-06 WASL
-47.80% .... 2006-07 WASL
-46.30% .... 2007-08 WASL
-49.70% .... 2008-09 WASL
-49.50% .... 2009-10 MSP

The Hispanic Student Gap lessened in 2009-2010 but certainly shows no indication that it will be eliminated as Ms. Santorno claimed.

Hispanic Students
-42.20% .... 2004-05 WASL
-36.40% .... 2005-06 WASL
-36.30% .... 2006-07 WASL
-40.40% .... 2007-08 WASL
-40.60% .... 2008-09 WASL
-32.70% .... 2009-10 MSP

Limited English Speaking students are completely ill served by the Discovery/Inquiry method advocated by Seattle. This is a clear indication of a complete failure to serve the needs of Parents, Students, and Teachers.

Limited English Speaking Students
-53.80% .... 2004-05 WASL
-48.40% .... 2005-06 WASL
-56.20% .... 2006-07 WASL
-56.10% .... 2007-08 WASL
-57.40% .... 2008-09 WASL
-56.70% .... 2009-10 MSP

Low Income students slightly improved in 2010.

Low Income Students
-42.10% .... 2004-05 WASL
-36.70% .... 2005-06 WASL
-39.80% .... 2006-07 WASL
-40.20% .... 2007-08 WASL
-42.60% .... 2008-09 WASL
-37.80% .... 2009-10 MSP

Myth Busters .... Myth Busted ....
Achievement Gaps in fourth grade math will not be eliminated in grade four math, despite the Board's belief in EDM fairy-tales..


I have reported this apparent fraudulent activity of forgery to the audit managers at the State Auditor's Office in Seattle and to the Governor's Office in Olympia for possible referral to the Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna.

I suggest that at some point in the future it may be possible to end the Seattle Superintendent's contract abruptly with "Fired with Cause".

Commission of Class C Felony "Forgery" would appear to be adequate cause for immediate dismissal. From RCW 9A.20.040 if the maximum sentence of imprisonment authorized by law upon conviction of such felony is less than eight years, such felony shall be treated as a class C felony for purposes of this title.

Let us see how the next few months play out.

There is always the gross misdemeanor of misleading a public official in the exercise of their duty. Every person convicted of a gross misdemeanor defined in Title 9A RCW shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail for a maximum term fixed by the court of not more than one year, or by a fine in an amount fixed by the court of not more than five thousand dollars, or by both such imprisonment and fine.


It seems we have a system in which NO VENDOR is LEFT BEHIND
and the changes in performance of students is hardly noticed.

As a friend said:
"American Education is like a Bad Divorce, the kids are just used for leverage for something the adults want."

-- J. L. Anderson

Summary of the possible Forgery: LINK HERE

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Moving Forward with Common Core Standards
....... but Why?

Selections from the above article by Sarah Fine follow:

If there remains any doubt about the momentum of the Common Core State Standards Initiative, let it be abandoned once and for all. Thirty-six states and the District of Columbia, which collectively educate three-fourths of all school-age children in this country, have pledged to adopt the core. Intellectual gatekeepers have given the standards a resounding pass. Plans for implementation have begun. For better or worse, the boulder is on its way down the mountain, gathering strength and speed as it goes. ......

There is, though, one element of the core standards that could force teachers to narrow their instructional practices, and it is an area that remains as yet largely unexplored: assessment. .......

In the era of high-stakes standardized testing, however, what counts is what is most easily measurable. ..... This dramatically narrows the possibilities for innovative classroom teaching, and, based on my observations, accounts for much of the antipathy that teachers and administrators feel toward standards initiatives such as the common core. ......

The standards themselves do not confine teaching to the realm of the scripted or undemocratic, but without serious reflection and rethinking, they will.

Seattle Schools Score changes from '09 to '10 by groups
Were promises fulfilled?

How are the Seattle Schools stacking up when compared with the State?

I thought since Dr. Goodloe-Johnson has completed her third year in Seattle and is spending over $10 million dollars on Academic Coaches for teachers each year, inflating the number of Administrators in the Central Administration and spends 9% of total budget on Central Administration it would be time to assess whether her plans produce results better or worse than the rest of the state.

To do this I constructed a spreadsheet of scores for both the State and the Seattle School District and looked at the score changes from 2009 testing to 2010 testing.

I should point out that I find the District's lack of emphasis on academic content appalling and I have regularly pointed out the District's preference for practices that DO NOT work especially in grades k-4 and for limited English speaking students.

So here we go.... check it out.

Seattle Change minus State change
Reading grade 10

White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
0.00% .:. 0.00% .:. -3.20% .:. -4.60% .:. -5.60% .:. -9.30%

Seattle Change minus State change
Math grade 10
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
2.20% .:. 2.90% .:. 0.20% .:. -1.90% .:. -2.80% .:. -5.40%

Seattle Change minus State change
Writing grade 10
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-0.10% .:. 4.00% .:. 0.10% .:. 1.70% .:. -3.50% .:. -4.10%

Seattle Change minus State change
Science grade 10
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
0.60% .:. 3.60% .:. 0.10% .:. 3.20% .:. -0.90% .:. -0.30%

Averages of above 4 values for grade 10
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
0.68% .:. 2.63% .:. -0.70% .:. -0.40% .:. -3.20% .:. -4.78%


Seattle Change minus State change
Reading grade 7
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
0.80% .:. 2.80% .:. -0.90% .:. 7.40% .:. -0.50% .:. -2.10%

Seattle Change minus State change
MATH grade 7
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
1.70% .:. 0.30% .:. 5.70% .:. 8.10% .:. 2.20% .:. 3.90%

Seattle Change minus State change
Writing grade 7
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-5.20% .:. -1.10% .:. -3.40% .:. -1.70% .:. -4.90% .:. -14.00%

Seattle Change minus State change
Science grade 8
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
3.30% .:. 9.10% .:. 3.40% .:. 2.60% .:. 11.60% .:. 0.90%

Averages of above 4 values for grade 7 and 8
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
0.15% .:. 2.78% .:. 1.20% .:. 4.10% .:. 2.10% .:. -2.83%


Seattle Change minus State change
Reading grade 4
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-0.60% .:. -11.50% .:. 1.30% .:. -1.30% .:. 0.20% .:. -2.40%

Seattle Change minus State change
Math grade 4
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-1.60% .:. -6.10% .:. 4.10% .:. -3.20% .:. 3.20% .:. -3.20%

Seattle Change minus State change
Writing grade 4
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-6.20% .:. -9.10% .:. -7.80% .:. -4.20% .:. -0.80% .:. -7.50%

Seattle Change minus State change
Science grade 5
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-1.30% .:. -10.30% .:. 1.60% .:. -0.60% .:. -1.70% .:. 1.50%

Seattle Change minus State change
Reading grade 3
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited Eng
-2.60% .:. 1.10% .:. 1.40% .:. -1.10% .:. -1.60% .:. -4.60%

Seattle Change minus State change
Math grade 3
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
0.90% .:. -8.10% .:. -0.80% .:. -0.10% .:. -0.50% .:. -5.30%

Averages of above 5 values for grades 3 and 4
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-2.02% .:. -6.74% .:. -0.36% .:. -1.98% .:. 0.10% .:. -4.60%

The Strategic Plan put forth by Dr. Goodloe-Johnson made claims that large improvements would be made. Clearly that is not happening. Things are worse for the SPS over the last year when District Change and State Change are compared in grades 3 and 4.

As to how things look when the scores from all 14 grade level scores are averaged:
White, AmIndian, Asian/Pac I, Black, Hispanic, Limited English
-0.58% .:. -1.60% .:. 0.13% .:. 0.310% .:. -0.40 .:. -3.71%

So How did it go overall?

Pretty much the same as the state except for American Indians very slightly worse and for Limited English speakers worse.

Clearly achievement gaps are not being closed.
Teach for America is hardly the answer. Using instructional materials and practices that are known to work is the answer
..... but the Superintendent is apparently light years beyond that. She needs to be fired with cause for several reasons. The #1 reason has to do with her actions in regard to the New Technology Network $800,000 Contract.

November 18, 2010 the Recall hearing for Directors Sundquist, Carr, Martin-Morris, and Maier will take place in Judge Inveen's courtroom in the King County Courthouse Room W869 at 3:00 PM.

Given the disappointing results from grades 3 and 4 coupled with my Special Education analysis and the disappointing results for English Language Learners one really must question the "Empress's New Clothes". A faulty foundation in grades k-4 will not produce later success.

It is time to put an end to Dr. Goodloe-Johnson's succession of failing experiments.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Special Ed Report Card on MGJ's Plan of differentiating instruction
reveals a colossal failure to serve
Special Education Students

The Special Education practices of MGJ in regard to class size does not matter and more students need to be mainstreamed does not appear to be serving students particularly well.

The test score gains made from 2006 to 2007 the year before MGJ's arrival were spectacular when compared with the poor showing last year of score changes measured from 2009 to 2010.

On Tuesday 11/8/2010 in Seattle, WA the SPS will issue school report cards for each school.

Given the level of chaos created by Dr. Goodloe-Johnson's inclusion of Special Education students into classrooms without adequate academic support, I thought a statistical analysis of SpEd students and All students results might provide some insight for the District as a whole.

I first ran a comparison of change of scores from OSPI's 2009 testing with 2010 testing for all students in 20 separate tested grade levels and subject areas for Special Ed students. I then did the same for All students. Upon finding those results very unimpressive for Special Ed students I then repeated the calculations for the changes from 2006 to 2007, which was the last year of testing prior to Dr. Goodloe-Johnson's arrival. MGJ says class size does not matter, well she seems to be oblivious to something that matters as the results were substandard.

The results are shockingly different under MGJ's leadership.
Last years changes in 20 areas showed SpEd students generally performing worse than all students in change of scores. In 10 cases SpEd students scored at least 1% worse than All, while in only 3 cases did SpEd students score at least 1% better than all.

The year before Dr. Goodloe-Johnson's arrival was markedly better for SpEd students.
In 20 areas SpEd students scored at least 1% better than All students 17 times, while scoring worse than All students only twice.

When the changes are match up for all 20 cases
the SpEd Students change was better in all 20 cases in 2007 than in 2010.

In 19 of those case the differential was greater than 1%.
In 13 of those cases the differential was greater than 5%.
In 5 of those cases the differential was greater than 10%.

Here are those Special Ed minus All differentials:

.:..:..:. 06' to 07' .:. 09 to '10 .:. Change differential
.:..:..:. Change .:. Change : Superiority of 07 over '10

Gr. 3 Read : 5.40% .:. -6.30% .:. 11.70%
Gr. 3 Math : 4.40% .:. -2.40% .:. 6.80%

Gr. 4 Read : 9.10% .:. -3.30% .:. 12.40%
Gr. 4 Math : 3.50% .:. 0.10% .:. 3.40%
Gr.4 Write : 6.40% .:. 2.20% .:. 4.20%

Gr. 5 Read : 8.50% .:. -1.60% .:. 10.10%
Gr. 5 Math : 4.90% .:. -2.80% .:. 7.70%
Gr.5 Science: 6.90% .:. 0.80% .:. 6.10%

Gr. 6 Read: 10.80% .:. 0.20% .:. 10.60%
Gr. 6 Math : 3.20% .:. -0.90% .:. 4.10%

Gr. 7 Read : 5.70% .:. 2.30% .:. 3.40%
Gr. 7 Math : -1.60% .:. -2.50% .:. 0.90%
Gr.7 Write : 8.90% .:. -8.80% .:. 17.70%

Gr. 8 Read .:. 6.70% .:. -0.40% .:. 7.10%
Gr. 8 Math .:. 0.40% .:. -2.00% .:. 2.40%
Gr.8 Science: -1.30% .:. -3.30% .:. 2.00%

Gr.10 Read : 9.80% .:. 1.80% .:. 8.00%
Gr.10 Math : 4.60% .:. -4.00% .:. 8.60%
Gr.10 Writ : 8.90% .:. -0.30% .:. 9.20%
Gr.10 Sci. : 8.10% .:. -0.60% .:. 8.70%

Why does the School Board continue to follow Dr. Goodloe-Johnson's pathetic Strategic Plan?

Once again we are in the midst of a failed experiment and the School Board does nothing other than continue to fail the students they are charged with providing an adequate education. Dr. Goodloe-Johnson inflates both spending and central administration and produces horrible results. Check the data above and remember her words:
"Assessing every student and placing them according to ability sounds like tracking and discrimination…and we’ve moved light years away from that."

What utter hogwash doth this lady utter.


Find out how the District's scores compare with the state's scores HERE.

A comment below informs me that this is not a measure of the ICS Special Ed model as ICS has only been implemented k-2.

What this does measure is the state of special ed in the third year of Dr. Goodloe-Johnson's leadership.

WA POST: Montgomery County and Arithmetic etc. "Basic Math at last"

Montgomery County schools to push basic math to prepare students for Algebra

By Michael Birnbaum
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, November 5, 2010; 12:00 AM

"Elementary and middle school students will no longer skip grade levels in math in large numbers. Instead, they will spend extra time on fundamental mathematical concepts that will better prepare them for Algebra I in the eighth grade and advanced math topics in high school. The school system aims to increase the number of high school students taking courses such as calculus and statistics."

and also ...

"Some students were placed in classes, and perhaps they weren't as prepared as they should have been," said Frieda Lacey, deputy superintendent of Montgomery schools, who sat on the work group that wrote the report. She said it was better to tackle topics in greater depth.

She called Montgomery's previous push for greater math acceleration an "overcorrection." But she also said the school system would not abandon accelerating students altogether.

So my question is: Has someone actually figured out that Arithmetic Skills are fundamental to Number Sense and understanding mathematics? or is this just the next deal in the cycle of churning pedagogical hit and miss changes?

NCTM and the Common Core Standards
Bye-Bye Local Control

NCTM reports on two task forces. For more on their vision concerning interpretation & implementation of CCSS (work of 1st task force), watch for their upcoming publication "Making It Happen."

The 2nd task force brought together reps from NCTM, NCSM, AMTE, and ASSM. The report from their task force gives insight into their vision of whom should have authority to make changes to the CCSS going forward. From page 5 of the report;

"2. Create a process to support short-term fixes, medium-term adjustments, and long-term review and modification of the CCSS, as needed. Base changes on expert advice and empirical evidence, and insulate the process from excessive political influence."

I wonder, will input from parents and/or groups like "Where's the Math?" be looked upon as "expert advice", "empirical evidence", or will our concerns be cast as "excessive political influence?" Full report at:

Teaching moved Off-Shore :
London ==> Punjab

British Kids Log On and Learn Math -- in Punjab

Once a week, year six pupils at Ashmount Primary School in North London settle in front of their computers, put on their headsets and get ready for their math class. A few minutes later, their teachers come online thousands of kilometers away in the Indian state of Punjab.

Ashmount is one of three state schools in Britain that decided to outsource part of their teaching to India via the Internet. The service -- the first of its kind in Europe -- is offered by BrightSpark Education, a London-based company set up last year. BrightSpark employs and trains 100 teachers in India and puts them in touch with pupils in Britain through an interactive online tutoring program.

The feedback from pupils, the schools and parents is good so far, and BrightSpark said a dozen more schools, a charity and many more parents were interested in signing up for the lessons. The one-on-one sessions not only cost about half of what personal tutors in Britain charge but are also popular with pupils, who enjoy solving equations online, said Rebecca Stacey, an assistant head teacher at Ashmount.