Monday, October 26, 2015

Sunday Leftover: School Test

Don't expect any help from me:

"Faced with mounting and bipartisan opposition to increased and often high-stakes testing in the nation’s public schools, the Obama administration declared Saturday that the push had gone too far, acknowledged its own role in the proliferation of tests, and urged schools to step back and make exams less onerous and more purposeful."

It's not the first time he's abandoned kids.

Looks like you are on your own:

Test isn’t better at gauging readiness, study says

PARCC, panic, and the perils of new math

Then a tutor is in order, no?

Adopt PARCC – and ignore the political noise

I never disagree with the Globe editorial board, and neither should you.

"MIT won’t divest from fossil-fuel firms" by Laura Krantz Globe Staff  October 21, 2015

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology five-year plan mentions several major oil and gas companies whose chief executives recently expressed support for combating climate change, six of whom fund energy research at MIT: BP, Eni, Saudi Aramco, Shell, Statoil, and Total.

Now I know it's a $elf-$erving $cam.

The divestment movement has been gaining momentum on campuses around the country. Last year, Stanford University announced it would divest from coal companies, and Georgetown University recently followed suit.

Related: BDS Success 

Was the last I saw of it.

Other schools, such as Syracuse University and Hampshire College, pledged to divest their entire fossil fuel portfolios.

Last spring, students at Tufts University held a 55-hour sit-in to protest fossil fuel investment, and students at Harvard blocked administrative buildings. At Yale, police arrested 19 students in a campus protest against fossil fuel investment.

It's nice seeing the agenda-pu$hing pre$$ support you controlled-opposition kids.

But most colleges, including Harvard, have rejected the idea of divestment. Harvard says the endowment is intended “to advance academic aims, not to serve other purposes, however worthy.”

MIT has a $13.5 billion endowment. President L. Rafael Reif, in a phone call with reporters, said he did not know what percentage is invested in fossil fuels.

Maria T. Zuber, the school’s vice president for research, said the decision to maintain the stake in fossil fuel companies was not based on concerns about potential financial loss. Zuber also said university endowment managers did not play a role in the decision, nor did the oil companies that fund energy research at MIT.

Some oil companies have come under fire recently for allegedly supporting the spread of misinformation about climate change. MIT’s plan says the college is “not naive about the pernicious role of some segments of the fossil fuel industry in creating the current policy deadlock.’’

I'm no longer going to belabor the point.

MIT overall receives about 19 percent of its research funding, or $128 million, from companies, including about $50 million annually for energy research....


The university has determined that maintaining ties with oil and energy companies is a more effective way to tackle the problem, but the kids say “this announcement is business-as-usual repackaged.”

Divestment activists protest outside MIT president’s office

The protest began around 6:30 a.m., a day after Reif said MIT can more effectively combat climate change by cooperating with gas and oil companies, many of whom fund research at MIT, and by doing more research and education about renewable energy and global warming.

What do you mean all an$wers in my paper are wrong?

"The new Open Agriculture group is another partner at the Media Lab. Launched in the fall this year, OpenAg is led by Caleb Harper, a longtime academic who has been studying how agricultural practices can be adapted for urban environments. For Target, a company with lots of spaces in urban environments and a global supply chain, reasonable questions could include: “Can we grow some of this food closer to where it’s consumed?” and “Can we grow it in a more sustainable way? We want to improve people’s food options. We want to improve the transparency of the food we eat,” said Greg Shewmaker, Target’s entrepreneur-in-residence. Step one for that endeavor is to track emerging conversations about food and eating preferences on social channels. Target’s partner in this effort is the Laboratory for Social Machines led by Media Lab professor and Twitter chief scientist Deb Roy. Though Target has used listened for feedback from customers on Twitter, this is the first time the company will conduct a focused investigation across online media."

That reminds me; it's getting close to lunchtime.

"Students’ vote tally delayed over diversity; Calif. principal says results don’t reflect all groups" by Sudhin Thanawala Associated Press  October 22, 2015

SAN FRANCISCO — A student government election at a mostly Hispanic San Francisco middle school turned into a debate about the democratic process when the principal delayed the results because the winners did not reflect the school’s diverse student body.

Seems familiar.


State officials mum on English High MCAS inquiry

State to release MCAS scores for English High nearly a month after the results were suppressed because of unspecified anomalies.

Newly released English High MCAS scores show major gains

If I were not such a cynic I would suspect cheating in the form of adjusted standards (or worse).

Everett Middle School Principal Lena Van Haren announced the winners Monday, more than a week after results were known. She said in a phone interview she had no intention of annulling the votes, but wanted to first engage all the candidates in a discussion about how to ensure underrepresented groups were heard.

One idea was to add representatives to the student council, she said.

‘‘I apologized to parents for causing any anxiety,’’ she said. ‘‘I was never planning on changing the elections.’’

The school of about 500 sixth- through eighth-graders is 56 percent Hispanic or Latino and 9 percent African-American, according to data on the California Department of Education website. The school is in the city’s Mission District.

Van Haren said African-Americans and Latinos were underrepresented among students who became president, vice president, treasurer, secretary, and grade representatives. Most of the Hispanic or Latino students at the school are native Spanish speakers, but that group was not represented in the winners, she said.

‘‘I feel really strongly that it’s not just about having a diverse student council so it looks nice,’’ she said. ‘‘I, as principal, want to elevate student voices and see how they are experiencing school. If I’m missing certain groups, I’m not going to get a clear picture.’’

AmeriKan democracy is in $uch a state that maybe quotas would be a better option; then the Zionist lobby can take its 2% seat instead of the oversized ass it squeezes in now.

Todd David, whose son, Noah, is an eighth-grader, said the principal undermined the democratic process in the name of social justice. ‘‘I think it sends an unfortunate message to students when you say that the people you elected, they’re not representative of you even though you’re the ones who chose them,’’ he said.

At least kids got it.

The flap started with an e-mail Van Haren sent to parents last week telling them the results were in but did not reflect ‘‘the diversity that exists at Everett.’’ She invited all the candidates to meet with school leadership before deciding the next step.


You kids learn anything about AmeriKan elections and authority there?


Obama’s push to limit testing fuels Mass. debate

Report says some states deserve better education rankings

They have fooled and fiddled with the results as to make them meaningless.

Elite Harvard ‘final club’ says it has admitted 9 women

Speaking of them:

"Wellesley College receives record $50 million gift" by Laura Krantz Globe Staff  October 26, 2015

Wellesley College has received the largest financial gift in its history, a $50 million donation from two graduates that the university said demonstrates a continued commitment to liberal arts, women-only education.

The gift, first announced Friday to students and graduates, kicks off a $500 million fund-raising campaign the women-only college officially launched over the weekend. The school has raised $335 million toward that goal, including the $50 million, officials said Monday.

The gift will help the college strengthen its career services for students and connect them to the worldwide “W network” of Wellesley graduates, who are famous for helping out fellow alumnae. The broader campaign will support multiple programs including academics and scholarships.

College officials did not release the donors’ names, citing their wish for privacy....



Mass. students are again tops in national testing

MIT prof to bring ‘X-ray vision’ device to market

UMass Lowell, Salem State drop SAT, ACT requirement

SAT losing favor as more Mass. colleges end requirement

Boston lags behind Mass. schools in PARCC scores

Call it MCAS 2.0

Education board votes to adopt hybrid MCAS-PARCC test

Sorting through PARCC vs. MCAS

Teachers union says charter school drive violates ethics rules