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Another small sign of a shift

October 16, 2010 pm31 12:40 pm

In the war against public education, some hesitation.

Arlene Ackerman, Superintendent of Philadelphia schools, removed her name from the Klein/Rhee anti-education manifesto. See here and here.

UPDATE:  Here is Ackerman’s own response to the manifesto.

We are still on the defensive, no doubt about it. But between the primary election defeats of charter champions in New York, the voters tossing out Rhee in DC, the testing fiasco in New York State, the pounding on “not the change we voted for” and the voices joining Ravitch on questioning the whole thing, there’s a little counter-momentum, enough to make at least one superintendent hedge her bets.

The manifesto, published in the Washington Post on October 7, was initially signed by 16  (now down to 15), including Klein and Rhee from NYC and formerly from DC, as well as Paul Vallas, Ron Huberman, and superintendents from Houston, Baltimore, Indianapolis, Boston, Kansas City, Rochester and five other districts. The manifesto calls for a more testing and emphasis on test scores and less actual learning for urban youth, partially through deprofessionalizing urban teaching staffs. It also calls for less job security and more temporary teachers, both through weakening work rules and through setting up more non-union charter schools.

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