Will public schools continue to exist in the United States?
You have to wonder when you consider the press release below. This morning, billionaire mischief maker, Eli Broad will take time from destroying the economy and reneging on charitable promises, to commit greater violence against public school children in America by awarding his annual bribe prize for the school district that places the greatest misplaced emphasis on deeply flawed standardized testing.
At a time of deep budget cuts in public education, a million dollars is real money. Districts like, Long Beach, CA are addicted to the Broad Prize payola bribe food pellet scholarship money and compete year-after-year at the alter of testing über alles. The Long Beach schools are now so great that Eli Broad and all of his rich friends now send their own children and grandchildren to the Long Beach public schools – I’m only kidding! LMAOROTFL! 🙂
It’s one thing to convince mayors to suspend democracy, seize control of public education and transfer public treasure to private hands (as described in my 2008 GOOD Magazine cover story, School Wars), but Eli Broad’s unchecked power now seems unstoppable. It’s quite likely that Broad will soon turn dozens of Los Angeles Unified public schools into the obedience schools for minority children that he so loves.
Sure, Broad likes to kick-it old skool with his posse, including Bill Gates and Kanye West, but today he wins the VMA of American politics when Federal Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, presents the 2009 Broad Urban Education Prize. That’s right, Duncan will play Pinocchio to Broad’s Gepetto. Since co-opting only one branch of government is so old-fashioned, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi will be there too as Eli Broad’s Vanna White. (She has played this role in the past)
Is the United States Government now a wholly-owned subsidiary of oligarchs like Eli Broad? Should educators throw a tea party?
(Below the press release are some links for additional reading on Duncan and Broad)
Winner of $2 Million Broad Prize for Urban Education to be
Announced, Named Most Improved Urban School District
Aldine, Broward County, Gwinnett County, Long Beach and Socorro
Vie for Country’s Largest Education Prize
For Immediate Release
Monday, Sept. 14, 2009
Contact: Erica Lepping, email@example.com
O: 310.954.5053, C: 310.594.6880
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
Members of Congress
D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty
Philanthropist Eli Broad
300 leading education policy-makers and practitioners
Announce the winner of the 2009 Broad Prize for Urban Education, the largest education prize in the country. The finalists are school districts in Aldine, Texas; Broward County, Fla.; Gwinnett County, Ga.; Long Beach, Calif. and Socorro, Texas.
Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2009
- 9 to 10:45 a.m. ET: Panel discussion with superintendents from The Broad Prize finalist districts, moderated by former USA Today education journalist Richard Whitmire
- 11 a.m. to noon ET: Announcement of winner, with remarks by Secretary Duncan
United States Capitol Visitor Center, Washington, D.C. Enter below East Plaza of Capitol between Constitution and Independence Avenues. Events in Congressional Auditorium.
Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve a seat. Capitol Visitors Center press credentials required in advance through House Radio/TV Gallery, 202.225.5214.
The following opportunities to cover the announcement will also be available on Sept. 16:The $2 million Broad (pronounced brode) Prize for Urban Education (http://www.broadprize.org/) annually honors urban American school districts that demonstrate the greatest overall performance and improvement in student achievement while reducing income and ethnic achievement gaps. The winning district will receive $1 million in college scholarships for high school seniors, with $250,000 in scholarships for each finalist district. The event is sponsored by The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation (www.broadfoundation.org).###
Veteran educator Gary Stager, Ph.D. is co-author of Invent To Learn — Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom, publisher at Constructing Modern Knowledge Press, and the founder of the Constructing Modern Knowledge summer institute. He led professional development in the world’s first 1:1 laptop schools thirty years ago and designed one of the oldest online graduate school programs. Gary is also the curator of The Seymour Papert archives at DailyPapert.com. Learn more about Gary here.