Saturday, May 7, 2011

Broad virus

On a "Start a new post" Need a doctor wrote:

"How to tell if your school district has been infected by the Broad virus.

Toward the end of the posting (which sounds like it could have been written here in Pittsburgh) there are a couple comments about the abject silence of your local newspaper with regard to the Broad Foundation and its connection to your school. Uncanny."


Questioner said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Questioner said...


Especially noteworthy symptoms:

"The production of “data” that is false or cherry-picked, and then used to justify reforms."

"Culture of fear of reprisal develops in which teachers, principals, staff, even parents feel afraid to speak up against the policies of the district or the superintendent."

"Ballooning of the central office at the same time superintendent makes painful cuts to schools and classrooms.

Sudden increase in number of paid outside consultants."

"The district hires a number of “Broad Residents” at about $90,000 apiece, also trained by the Broad Foundation, who are placed in strategically important positions like overseeing the test that is used to evaluate teachers or school report cards."

"Your school board starts to show signs of Stockholm Syndrome. They vote in lockstep with the superintendent."

"Grants appear from the Broad and Gates foundations in support of the superintendent, and her/his “Strategic Plan.”"

"Local newspaper fails to report on much of this.

Local newspaper never mentions the words “Broad Foundation.”"

How did we allow this to happen?

Anonymous said...

I have been asking this question for over 2 years.

Anonymous said...

More and more it is beginning to look like Mark Roosevelt was a puppet for Broad. He brought a name that gave Broad credibility.

Anonymous said...

Many, many, many people have been asking the same question.

Broad and Roosevelt made no secret of their connection. Roosevelt, who had not credentials, qualifications, or experience for the position, relied totally on support from Broad, who, as stated used Roosevelt for their poster 'superintendent'

There was no public outcry because the PR was a facade for the decline of our District. And still there is little outcry of substance because if you follow the money in very large AND very small quarters they take the Broad/Gates money and run.

And who will blame them in this economy.

Anonymous said...

I think there are parents, teachers, etc. in every one of these districts who have seen this all along, but it's very hard to explain to people that it's happening not just here but everywhere.

We're so used to local control of schools, that it's hard to see when that "local control" is being maneuvered, manipulated, marionetted, whatever you prefer by millions from outside the district.

I'd love to send "plants" to both the superintendent's academy and the school board trainings that they run. However it is that they "turn" people, it's effective. For turning them, that is, not for teaching the students, though.

It's also one of my biggest problems with having school board members whose "real" jobs depend on the foundations, the same foundations supporting Broad reforms, and funding A+ Schools.

If you're working at a non-profit that gets funding from these same groups, it seems to me a conflict of interest. We saw it with Heather Arnet, and again with Dara Ware Allen. As well-meaning as they mean, their ears have to be tuned to the foundations' demands, first and foremost.

anony said...

Some get exactly what you are saying 2:21 and your post reminds us to say thanks again to those who created and operate this blog. The research and reporting and attending the meetings that generate the reporting all cost in some form and that this blog is basically a donation to stakeholders should not be forgotten.

Questioner said...

And thank you!

Why is it that our local foundations would be so eager to support the Broad/Gates efforts? Is it just a general mindset that foundations are in a better position to make decisions and set policy than a more participatory process? A preference for power to be with foundations?

Anonymous said...

I think it was a combination of things that led to the situation to education's current situation.

From the foundations viewpoint, who is a bigger pocket than the names associated with these reforms? They need to attract money, too, so they can support their causes. If Gates, Broad, and the Walton family are handing out money, they have to be there.

And as we all know, it sounds good. They're selling things that sound like what everyone wants: excellence, career readiness, everyone performing at some high level, running things with efficiency and a business mind, etc.

It's just that it turns out that having a big idea and piles of cash isn't the same as understanding public schools, education, and the point of both of those things. Remember when education was about creating well-informed citizens instead of just "ready workers"?


Anonymous said...

The "preference" for "making decisions" in the case of schools/education, hopefully, should not be "power", "foundations", the "general mindset," or even the "participatory process."

It must be about educational philosophy and psychology about "how young people learn." That should be paramount and drawn from experience and research.

The rich (Broad/Gates), the powerful (Foundations), or the famous (in this case Roosevelt) are demonstrating every day that Education is not what they do best, unless it is to make money and extend power.

It is not serving the majority of young people who need an education to take their place in the world.

Questioner said...

However, different people can draw different conclusions based on similar experience and research about how young people learn. And research sometimes yields conflicting results. And it is more common than not for executives or representatives (such as the president, government representatives, etc.) rather than researchers to make the ultimate decisions, hopefully informed by a participatory process.

Anonymous said...

Can someone find that list of PPS employees/administrators who have been Broad trained? I can't remember which post it was under but I feel like it should be copy and pasted here.

Anonymous said...

Linda Lane

Jacob House 2010-2012 Pittsburgh Public Schools Pittsburgh Public Schools  University of Michigan  M.B.A. 
Eddy Jones 2007-2009 Pittsburgh Public Schools Pittsburgh Public Schools  Carnegie Mellon University  M.B.A. 
Pierce Kilduff 2010-2012 Pittsburgh Public Schools Pittsburgh Public Schools  Boston College  M.B.A. 
Amy Malen 2008-2010 Pittsburgh Public Schools Pittsburgh Public Schools  University of California, Berkeley  M.P.P. 
Marni Pastor 2008-2010 Pittsburgh Public Schools Pittsburgh Public Schools  Harvard University  M.B.A. 
Cate Reed 2007-2009 Pittsburgh Public Schools Pittsburgh Public Schools  Carnegie Mellon University  M.P.M. 

Anonymous said...

PPS has had three that went through the Broad Superintendent's Academy: Mark Roosevelt, Linda Lane and Paul Gill.

They also have a number of Broad Residents: Jacob House, Eddy Jones, Pierce Kilduff, Amy Malen, Marni Pastor and Cate Reed.

Mark Rauterkus said...

Jacob House is a Broadie, and he is the "master mind" for the sports reform efforts that goes to the PPS Board on May 10th.

Anonymous said...

Not including Linda Lane that is well over 700K of the budget spent on a private employment agency. Add in Lane's salary, Roosevelt's sweet deals and all the multiple moving, life insurance crap and it easily exceeds a million.

This is our reality, the news does not report it other than from a capitalists wtg, teachers suck viewpoint.

Real reporters should be ashamed of themselves.

Anonymous said...

why Broad virus not in school dist
Upper St. Clair,Mt. Lebanon also
Central Catholic,Oakland Catholic or schools in more of a low economical area such as Duquesne,Clairton,Mckeesport
Woodlawn Hills school point is what is the qualification
to be with Broad/Gates do anyone have any info to how they get involve with schools dist(s) like PPS that something we need to know
than we might i said just might on
how to deal with Broad Staff also
i was shock to see now involve with
sports if so true how will the WPIAL respond!!!!!!!!one way is to give them money in which a lot of schools don't have money due to budget cuts keep a eye out on this one

Anonymous said...

Why PPS and Broad?

More lucrative, , more power, more national recognition, more prestige, more money and opportunity for expanding consultant contracts, Broad residents, trainees,national networking, etc.

Ultimately, PPS is much more nationally advantageous to Broad!

Anonymous said...

Thomas Sumpter had some training with Broad.

Anonymous said...

It might be worth noting that Jones and Reed are PPS grads.

The list is shorter than expected.

Anonymous said...

It might be worth noting that they are Schenley grads.

Anonymous said...

Is it relevant that Jones and Reed are PPS graduates?

Other than they were well-educated in another day and administration . . .

What is important is that they were TRAINED (and the accurate word is trained) by BROAD. There was a reason for that . . . they have risen quickly to positions far more lucrative that the average PPS staff and as we have witnessed they have an unwavering "fidelity" to the Broad/Gates agenda.

Anonymous said...

None of the Broads appear to be particularly creative, except maybe with marketing...

Anonymous said...

Except for a big photo staring you in the face, there is no mention of Mark Roosevelt on the Broad website, that I can find.

Anonymous said...

Depth of experience cultivates creativity. It is difficult to be innovative or creative in a field (education) where experience is as shallow as with the young Broad people.

They have been positioned, first, at the top of the administrative pyramid withOUT any substantive background, where they need it most. They are being programmed to fail in PPS. Having graduated here is an advantage, but not sufficient to bridge the gap and be creative LEADERS instantaneously .

Anonymous said...

Roosevelt recruited Lisa Fischetti to do the P.R. Her budget for 2007 was 1.5 million. It has increased each year since that time. Does anyone know the latest budget for P.R. in PPS?

Fischetti worked in a senior position at Ketchum for five years, 1999 to 2005. (Ketchum has a national reputation.) She also has/had her own P.R. firm.

Amazing what can happen with expensive P.R. to cover the reality!

Anonymous said...

The entire board has had "Broad Training". This is old news.

The city does not care, many communities do not care, The press and media simply kiss up and never dare to think or report anymore. I think many people are so numbed by PPS and the ongoing circus. It no longer matters since it seems that it is expected to fail. They are just going to "Promise" you might get some college money if you fit in and yet are still undereducated.
It is sad.

Anonymous said...

If Jacob House (a Broadie) is heading up the sports reform committee, that's like having the fox guard the hen house. It will be very interesting to see what is presented to the Board. I wouldn't be surprised to see sports eliminated. Money will be the excuse.

A family locating for business purposes to the Pittsburgh area, asked about schools. They have a young son who is an excellent student and athlete. They want an excellent safe education plus an excellent athletic situation for him. I advised them to locate and enroll in a suburban school. They already had done their homework and knew a PPS school was not an option they would opt for.