CURMUDGUCATION blog:  Should We Close Schools for Low Performance?

Posted by Peter Greene 26 Aug 2016 

Over at Rick Hess’s EdWeek blog, guest blogger Deven Carlson (Poli Sci, Oklahoma U) considers the question of whether or not schools that show low performance. In the process, he illuminates some of the deeply flawed premises under which reformsters operate.

He opens by noting that school closure has been a popular policy approach since the days of No Child Left Behind.

The logic of closing low-performing schools is clear: Shutting down bad schools will remove students from these contexts and facilitate their transition to a better school. Improved academic outcomes will follow. In addition, the resources that had been devoted to the closed schools can be reallocated to those that remain open, which may contribute to their improvement.

The path of that logic is clear. But clarity doesn’t equal correctness. I can take nice clear pictures of a KKK rally; they’re still wrongheaded dopes.

Read more here:

How the party of John McCain became the party of Donald Trump – from Utne Altwire

One Saturday afternoon in June, a few thousand Donald Trump supporters wearing T-shirts with slogans such as “Italian Lives Matter” and “I’m the infidel Allah warned about” streamed into the Arizona State Fair Grounds in Phoenix, to hear the newly minted Republican nominee speak at a venue known locally as the “Mad House.”

Walking among the rallygoers, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio was greeted by a succession of cheers from the crowd, a reception befitting a man whose immigration raids and birther task force had foreshadowed Trump’s rise.

On stage, former Gov. Jan Brewer, an immigration hardliner who clashed with … View original story: How the party of John McCain became the party of Donald Trump – Utne Altwire

How many people are better off than their parents? Depends on how you cut the data says the Brookings Institution

Two studies, using the same data set, produce results on absolute mobility that are 20 points apart. How does this happen? Dimitrios Halikias and Richard Reeves offer a number of possible explanations.

Few questions dominate politics more than the question of whether the next generation will be better off than the last; it is almost the definition of progress. That is why estimates of absolute mobility—i.e., the likelihood a child will be financially better off than their parent was at around the same age—are so important.

But these estimates can vary quite drastically. A new Urban Institute report finds that 63 percent of Americans have a higher income than their parents did. But an earlier, much-cited report from Pew painted a much rosier picture, with 84 percent surpassing their parents’ income:

Read the full report here: How many people are better off than their parents? Depends on how you cut the data. | Brookings Institution

Michigan’s public colleges spend millions to subsidize athletics MLive report says

Comment: Division I athletes are no better than indentured servants but then of course many receive tuition waivers along with being “well fed” I suppose. Oh nevermind. Deleveraging, merging, collapsing already underway in slow motion. Massive institutional debt, uncontrollable enrollment bleed, continuing state cuts, flat economy, etc. are going to take out the weaker players. Just be patient. One day there won’t be 13 public universities in Michigan anyway. And not nearly as many unpaid athletes either. – JLS


From the report:

Michigan’s 13 public universities that offer NCAA-level sports spent $140 million last year to subsidize their athletic programs.

The dollar volume spent to fund athletics at EMU, WMU and CMU raises questions about how much Michigan taxpayers and students should pay for college sports.

The institutional funds used to subsidize athletics are made up largely of state allocations, tuition and students fees, and are the main pool of money that pays for academic programs.

And while EMU, WMU and CMU officials say they won’t move to a lower, and less costly, NCAA division, the schools also don’t clarify for students how much their athletic subsidy represents on a tuition bill.

Educators at EMU and WMU say they are increasingly concerned about the money flowing from tuition payments to athletic offices. They’re joining national voices that question college sports funding across the U.S.

Malcolm Getz, an associate professor of economics at Vanderbilt University, said students are often “kept in the dark” when it comes to how universities fund college athletics and the degree to which colleges are subsidizing sports.

At a time when average student debt is north of $25,000, “That should be a real head scratcher,” Getz said.

Read more here: Michigan’s public colleges spend millions to subsidize athletics | Michigan News –