Sunday, November 23, 2014

How independent is A Plus Schools?

From the PG editorial board:

"One good thing about the Pittsburgh Public Schools is that it has an independent group that monitors education quality, performance and accountability. A+ Schools is both an advocate and a watchdog whose leaders come from foundations, corporations, universities, civic groups, government and school families."

- Is A+ Schools really independent?  Thoughts?


Questioner said...

This year, the report does not include SAT scores. There is very little in the report that permits a comparison with results prior to "reform." Coincidence?

Anonymous said...

I really do not believe the A+ Schools is what they purport to be at all.
Reason-Take UPREP for example. Have you heard or read of any serious comments from them concerning this school? Have they questioned why things never really improve there in spite of millions poured into this school? No, you have not nor will you hear anything of any consequence from them.

Anonymous said...

One of their Foundation supporters is the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. This speaks to their "independence."

I iust noticed that Judy Johnston is no longer on their Board. When she was, that certainly showed lack of "independence."

Anonymous said...

Think about the things A+ has passionately supported, TFA, performance based furloughs, RISE type evaluations, blaming all ills on 'teacher effectiveness' to name a few. Now think of all things they have ignored such as U Prep. A+ schools started up with the arrival of the Gates money and Roosevelt.

There are similar "watchdog" groups in other cities that have school districts that get Gates/Broad money. There was a similar group called StudentsMatter that was part if the Vergera case, as well as StudentsFirst, Teembloc, and Democrats for Education Reform.

All these fake groups are funded by millionaire reformers to cherry pick data and influence the public opinion. Much of their "research" serves to turn the public against teachers and unions because they are the only things standing in the way of the reformers complete takeover of public education.

Mark Rauterkus said...

When I saw the first report, years ago, I said, and told them, that the report needs to compare PPS schools to WPIAL schools.

Mostly, a family that departs a PPS school is not going to go to another PPS school. Rather, that family will flee the city. How does PPS stand next to Shaler, South Park, Woodland Hills, Montour, etc.

Anonymous said...

A+ has an agenda and everything they do is to support that agenda. They don't waste time on issues that parents are really concerned about. The only thing that matters is teachers. Unfortunately, they are having a rough time convincing parents that teachers are the only problems facing our students, families and school environments.

SolutionsRus said...

I believe that A+ Schools was once a true watchdog group. But it seems that they have been swayed by the agenda of The Gates foundation and big philanthropy.

You can't be an "advocate and a watchdog". That's an oxymoron. Therein lies the problem.

Hey, A+ Schools, pick a mission and stick to it!

Anonymous said...

Gate has been criticized many time for influencing media & creating fake grass roots groups see below. Sounds a lot like Pittsburgh and A+ schools.

Unduly Influencing Journalists

The Gates Foundation has funded journalists, think tanks, lobbying organizations and governments—including controversial groups such as the American Legislative Exchange Council and the New America Foundation—to push Gates' backed reforms.[85][86][87][88] Gates-funding is not always disclosed in articles or white papers supporting Gates' positions, creating the illusion of broad-based consensus.[89][90] Some have accused the Gates Foundation and its grantees of "astroturfing" (creating fake grass-roots political movements while hiding Gates's role).[90]

Anonymous said...

Challenge--someone from A+ schools- spend a day in UPrep--- if you do that-- you can choose another school to visit in PPS-- dont give us numbers-- tell us how you FEEL after a day at UPREP and then at another school.

Anonymous said...

This is so false! I work in these schools! Quit with the lies!