Jorge Cabrera spent three years working as a community organizer for an education reform group in Bridgeport, CT. Now Cabrera is speaking out about a movement that he says is obsessed with charter schools, averse to real debate and in thrall to Ivy League leaders -- even if they've never led anything.
House Republicans ironically named their No Child Left Behind reauthorization bill the Student Success Act, which attempts to gut our public education system and take vital funding away from the neediest students. This bill is paving the way for the privatization of education through the expansion of voucher programs.
The notion that we can judge success after one or two years is simple ignorance. Test scores can be valuable to students, but education is far more than a few dozen tests in Math and English. Education is not naturally a part of politics, and when politicians get involved in the details, they inevitably make a mess.
Focusing especially on low-income and immigrant students who might easily get lost in the shuffle (or worse), Mr. Barth has designed systems that provably enhance academic performance, with the rather pleasing side effect of strengthening communities and improving the odds for potentially at-risk youths residing in them.
At a time when stark achievement gaps remain unresolved, when increased funding in education is more badly needed than ever, and when too many schools are seeking to exempt English language learners from their accountability systems, H.R. 5 threatens to exacerbate the educational inequities that have long held back Latino students in our schools.