Monday, January 26, 2015

Thinking of Sending Your Child to a Charter School?

If you are thinking of sending your son/daughter to a charter/community school, please think again.  You need to ask lots of questions and do some research. Here is what I would ask before I would enroll my child in a charter program:

 What is your graduation rate?
 Are the teachers certified in the subjects they teach?
 How many teachers have master's degrees, reading certifications, and math certificates?
 How many children are in a classroom?
 What books or reading materials are provided?
 Who is the publisher of the learning materials?
 Are children seated at desks, or folding tables and chairs?
 Does your school have a library and a certified librarian on staff?
 How many hours per day do teachers work in the classroom?
 Does each child have a computer? If not, how many children must share one?
 Is the principal certified in school administration with a background in teaching?
 How many children are reading at or above their grade level?
 If the school has an excess of funds, what happens to that money?
 Ask for results and reports, and do not go on the word of the 'administrator' in the building.

Please note: I would not send my child to a charter/community school. I would move to a better public school district and give my child the full advantages of a well-funded, public education. Remember that charter/community schools answer to owners/CEO's while public schools respond to taxpayers.

>  Recent information about the attendance records of Ohio's charter (aka 'community schools') schools have made taxpayers upset.  It appears that some of these schools are receiving money for invisible students.   Following an investigation by the office of the Ohio Auditor, attendance records were released from some charters. Here is part of what was discovered-----

The Columbus Dispatch:

....A report released yesterday by Ohio Auditor Dave Yost found significantly lower attendance at half of the 30 charter schools where auditors conducted unannounced head counts this past fall....

....Among those with the widest gap was Capital High School, 640 Harrisburg Pike, Columbus. The school reported 298 students; auditors counted 142, fewer than half.....

....Gateway Academy on Kimberly Parkway North in Columbus reported 100 students but auditors counted 52, with 20 students absent....

Dayton Daily News:

Just 43 of the 153 students listed in attendance records at Dayton Technology Design High School were present when investigators from the state Auditor’s office conducted a surprise, random head count at 30 charter schools across the state, according to a report issued Thursday....

.....Auditors showed up at 8:35 a.m. Oct. 1 at Dayton Technology Design H.S. and found just 43 students in school — well below the 172 estimated enrollment given in July 2014 and below the 153 students reported to Ohio Department of Education by the school to be in attendance on Oct. 1. School Director Karl Perkins told auditors that the headcount would be low because tardy students tend to arrive closer to 9 a.m. and some log onto the computer from home, the report said.

Yost’s team showed up again — unannounced — at 8:55 a.m. on Nov. 12 and counted 60 students at Dayton Technology Design H.S. The audit also noted that the school didn’t notify ODE that it would offer “blended” learning where students take classes in person and online.....

Two Hamilton County charter schools had fewer than 25 percent of registered students in the classrooms when investigators from the Ohio Auditor's Office stopped by for a surprise head count, according to a state report released Thursday.....

....The local schools – Life Skills Center of Hamilton County and Life Skills Center of Cincinnati, which share an administrator and some teachers – are among seven schools whose surprise checks found far fewer students in the seats than the estimates provided.

Reported registration tallies were 64 at Life Skills Hamilton and 127 at Life Skills Cincinnati. But the headcounts, conducted Oct. 1, found 18 at Hamilton and 22 on the Cincinnati campus....

 Read Plunderbund's post on the charter school mess here.

You can download the entire report from the State Auditor's Office here.

If you are concerned about wasted money and corporations getting richer off of your tax money, call your state representative's office and demand an investigation.  I'd like to see a full report on charter school attendance, money received, and graduation rates side by side. It is time to stop wasting our tax dollars on these failing charter schools!!!!

FYI: Those online charter school ads you see on TV are the same ads shown in other states. It is fair to conclude that results are not the same for every student in every state.

Monday, January 19, 2015


...we honor the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  In order to reach his goals, we must continue to come together, and take steps toward peace and understanding.  We still have so much to do.

If you need more information about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., visit the King Center online.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Sad start to 2015

The year 2015 is fresh and new, but the layoffs continue in Ohio.
 There is NO Ohio economic miracle, Gov. Kasich!

> Here is an item that will get you thinking-----


...Tamir Rice was carrying a pellet gun near a recreation center when he was shot and killed in November. Police shot Rice in the abdomen seconds after arriving on scene in response to a 911 call that reported someone who was “ probably a juvenile ” was waving a gun that was “ probably fake ”.

“I don’t have confidence that a [state Bureau of Criminal Investigation] probe into police use-of-force would be a transparent, due-process kind of investigation,” said Jackson, according to Northeast Ohio Media Group . He instead called on the Cuyahoga County sheriff to investigate Rice’s death....

...Jackson’s comments on Sunday were similar to those he made last month after the the Department of Justice released its report on the city’s police force....

What is it about Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine that might cause anyone to think that there would be political motivations behind an investigation? 

> Mike DeWine is against marriage equality and he has spent time and money fighting against it. 

> Mike DeWine is against a woman's reproductive rights, including those that would allow a woman to choose to have an abortion.

> Mike DeWine's conflicts of interest in the investigation of the killing of a man at the Beavercreek Walmart. Plunderbund provided the details.

Considering the Republican control of the state, anything involving civil rights should be investigated by the U.S. Justice Department.