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Madfloridian's Journal
Posted by madfloridian in General Discussion
Mon Aug 13th 2012, 01:12 PM
Glad to see this article at In These Times. I think the concert is tomorrow, to be shown on Friday on CBS to promote a film about the Parent Trigger. That's when 51% of parents get to take over a school and run it....that is...they get to run it until the charter company takes over. But gee, they get to help pick the charter school company!

Walmart, Right-Wing Media Company Hold Star-Studded Benefit Promoting Education Reform Film

The world’s largest private-sector employer and the country’s most prominent conservative entertainment company have teamed up to sponsor a fundraiser called “Teachers Rock.” Backed by Walmart and Anschutz Film Group, the August 14 event will feature live performances from musicians like Josh Groban and appearances from actresses like Viola Davis; it will be broadcast August 18 as a CBS special with messages from actresses like Meryl Streep. And it will promote the upcoming feature film Won’t Back Down, Anschutz’s entry in the “education reform” wars.

Won’t Back Down is reportedly a highly sympathetic fictional portrayal of “parent trigger” laws, a major flashpoint in debates over education and collective bargaining. Under such laws, the submission of signatures from a majority of parents in a school triggers a “turnaround option,” which can mean the replacement of a unionized school with a non-union charter. Such laws have been passed in several states, but due to court challenges, the "trigger" process has never been fully implemented.

“It's another Waiting for Superman," says Jose Vilson, a New York City math teacher and board member of the Center for Teacher Quality. "You have these popular actors, who as well-intentioned as they may be, they may not know all the facts, but they’re willing to back up a couple of corporate friends or people maybe they've become familiar with" in "trying to promote this sort of vision."

Parent trigger is one of the model bills pushed by the right-wing American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). Adamantly opposed by teachers unions, parent trigger bills (as I’ve reported for Salon) have often been spearheaded and supported by Democratic politicians. In a Wall Street Journal op-ed slamming teachers unions, Campbell Brown highlighted Won’t Back Down as evidence that “teachers unions have become a ripe target for reformers across the ideological spectrum” and Hollywood “has turned on unions.”


I will remember for a long time the stars who felt it necessary to take part in such a "celebration" of teachers.....with the public schools getting nothing, the unions getting insults, and Teach for America getting the proceeds.

The country's first Parent Trigger school is starting this year in California, Desert Trails Elementary. I guess all the stars in this CBS special will be watching that school very closely. Yeh, that's sarcasm.

1st "Parent Trigger" school begins. Parents get power to hire, fire, and pick the charter company.

Stars like Maggie Gyllenhaal, Viola Davis, Carrie Underwood, Meryl Streep, Jennifer Garner, Matthew Morrison, Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl, Usher, Maroon 5's Adam Levine and James Valentine, and more are pushing this new "parent empowerment". That's the term they prefer rather than "trigger." Do they really understand the full implications?

I doubt it.
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