I’m a mom. I’m also a teacher. I have taught thousands of kids over the last 20 years of my career. When I walk into a school or a classroom I know what’s going on, and how to judge effective and ineffective instruction. I’m highly qualified, says Jennifer Wolfe for Yahoo! News. I’m a mom. I’m not a doctor. I have treated thousands of scrapes, rashes, fevers, itches, lumps and bumps. But when I walk into a hospital I have no idea what’s going on, or how to provide effective care for patients. I’m not qualified. So when I read about the so-called “parent trigger bill” I get pretty fired up. Currently, there are two bills in the Florida legislature that would turn over power to parents . The idea behind this baffles me. The first bill, House Bill 1191 or the Parent Empowerment Act, would allow parents to have the power to fire staff. That means that someone who has a grudge, or wishes to place blame for their child’s poor performance, would have the means to remove principals, vice-principals, and teachers like me from jobs that they are highly trained for……Read More
Podcast Series: Innovations in Education
Explore the full series of eSchool News podcasts hosted by Kevin Hogan—created to keep you on the cutting edge of innovations in education.
California ‘Parent Trigger’ rules: Tentatively OK’d by state board of education
The California State Board of Education unanimously voted today to tentatively approve a set of rules that outlines and gives parents more power to drive change in low-performing schools. The vote isn’t final–the “parent trigger” regulations will be laid out for open comment for 15 days, the Associated Press reports. The board will officially vote on the measure in September……Read More
Parents enact trigger laws nationwide
It’s been seven months since the brave parents at McKinley Elementary School approached Compton Unified and handed in the petitions that sounded off a revolution that has the entire country talking, reports the Huffington Post. Today, they know that, starting this fall, they will get the quality education they fought so hard to get for their children and only a couple of blocks from McKinley Elementary and that this movement is growing rapidly……Read More
At California school, parents force an overhaul
By Marlene Romero’s count, her son has had just one effective teacher in his five years at McKinley Elementary School here. Most of the time, she said, he has merely shuffled through classrooms, struggling in math without ever getting extra help. So when an organizer came knocking at her door promising that if she signed a petition, her son’s school could radically improve, Ms. Romero immediately pledged her support. Now, she is one of more than 250 parents in Compton who are using a new state law to force the failing school to be taken over by a charter school operator, the first such move in the country, reports the New York Times. Voicing enormous frustration with the existing school, the parents handed over the petition on Tuesday to district officials. “We are completely fed up,” Ms. Romero said. “We’ve been told to wait every year and nothing changes.”
When Ms. Romero attended Compton schools in the 1990s, she said, nobody seemed to notice or care when she skipped school for days at a time. She dropped out at the age of 16. “I want my children to be able to have what I didn’t,” she said.
For the last several months, Ms. Romero has helped gather petitions for the school takeover, which is expected to face legal challenges from the school board and teachers’ union, which strongly opposed the new law. Under the law, if 51 percent of parents at a school sign a petition, it “triggers” one of four actions, including takeover by a charter school. In this case, 61 percent of the parents signed the petition. When the State Legislature approved the measure in January, union officials referred to it as a “lynch mob provision.”…Read More