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Budget: This is what austerity looks like

By Paul Socolar on Apr 24, 2012 04:01 PM

The District's transformation plan announced today includes a five-year budget plan. The District also published its annual 43-page budget-in-brief document today. Here are 10 details that stand out about this far-reaching plan to bring the budget, which now has a $218 million gap, back into balance:

  1. The good news: The District now projects it wil end the current year without a deficit.

  2. Taking on more debt: Details for balancing the coming school year's budget are not all worked out. Chief Recovery Officer Thomas Knudsen said borrowing will be necessary to close much of the anticipated $218 million gap because most of the plan's projected savings won't come soon enough. And the gap will grow if the city doesn't deliver $94 million more in tax revenue.

  3. The strategy: District leaders say their overall strategy is to bring expenses back into balance with revenues by 2013-14 through "substantial concessions from all stakeholders." Major areas identified for savings include wage and benefits restructuring, reduced charter expenses, school closings, and drastic cuts to facilities maintenance and transportation.

  4. Pay cuts: Wages and benefit savings are an immediate target, Knudsen said. His goal is to cut $156 million in personnel costs off of a $1.2 billion baseline. That would be a 13 percent reduction. Asked whether the goal is to achieve those cuts in 2012, he said, "I would like to, but we're not going to be able to get there this year." Union contracts run until August 2013.

  5. Charters: The budget already reflects a 7 percent reduction in per-pupil payments to charters in the coming year. District payments to charters are determined by a state-mandated formula and based on District expenditures in the prior year. In addition, the District served notice to charters not to expect any increases in per-pupil payments in the three following years.

  6. More charters: The District says it's achieving $149 million in savings by limiting the growth of charters. But at the same time, charter costs in the five-year plan grow from $603 million in 2012 to $874 million in 2016 due to a continued increase in the number of charter seats.

  7. The squeeze: With charter school expenses growing and the costs of the District's debt growing as well, what's left for District-operated schools declines steadily in the years ahead – from $1.5 billion in 2012 to $1.3 billion in 2016. This $200 million decrease means funding for District schools will be 13 percent less in 2016 than it is today.

  8. School closings: Part of that decrease is accounted for by closing 40 school buildings in 2013, and 6 more each year after that, at an average cost saving of $850,000. Starting in 2013, they hope the savings add up to $33 million annually.

  9. Blue-collar blues: The District wants to save an additional $89 million on the operational side. The biggest chunk of that is $50 million in transportation, facilities, and maintenance costs. Current spending in those areas is $224 million. Knudsen said $50 million can be saved by contracting out those services but invited the District's blue-collar union, 32BJ SEIU, to "come back to management and tell us how you can reach that level of savings."

  10. Kids and classrooms: "We have wrung the towel about as dry as we can in terms of academic programs," said Knudsen, promising to spare schools from further cuts. But the numbers don't match that promise, reflecting the personnel cuts the District is determined to make by 2013. Spending on instruction in District schools is slated to drop by 11 percent, or $121 million in 2013 and by 2.5 percent more the following year.

 

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Comments (52)

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 24, 2012 6:01 pm

No, this is what racism and bigotry look like. Read Helen Gym's comment and learn something, likely for the first time.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 24, 2012 6:39 pm

What personnel cuts is the district planning to make by 2013? Teachers? 440? Building engineers?
Who will be left to teach children and WHY do people keep sending their kids to these charter schools? Their models are NOT sustainable (e.g. see Mastery Schools teacher attrition rate and top-heavy administrative staff).
I am a product of the public schools and love them. This is disgusting.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 24, 2012 7:04 pm

MONEY--easy and abundant for the crooks.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 2:22 pm

What I do not understand is how anyone in Philadelphia continues to allow the school district to lay off staff that are paid through grant funding for high profile and successful student programing, then use the restricted funds for the upper level staff members and pet projects. It's unbelievable to me that people can bring viable programming to the district and show them how the program would pay for itself after the first year but would say no to that and instead pay thousands and thousands of dollars for programs that don't work because they want to make sure their friends are still employed. And why is it that some politico's wives can be so dismissive of exceptional and extraordinary people in the district who work hard and long, long hours to help kids become self confident and engaged -- all because that politico's wife wants to throw her weight around? It's time to stop playing craps with the lives of children and the future of a city whose leadership seem hell bent on only wanting to hear themselves and their high class friends talk, but aren't willing to really work with low income families -- just their kids. If you don't educate the whole family in some way, you are missing the point, and if you continue to just purport that programming and education should be for children, then don't expect parents to help these kids with their homework and help engage them, because a lot of them come from parents and grandparents who were generations that the district previously dissed. Today's kids and their parents are the dissed generation: Disenfranchised, Disengaged, Disadvantaged, Disinterested -- just DISSED. I'm so sick of it I could just puke and those who call themselves leaders -- where are you in this? Put your money, time and commitment where your mouth is and help the adult caregivers and the children learn. If they KNOW better, they have a better chance to DO better, and the old habits die hard. Give them time to learn and correct their mistakes and they will become your strongest allies.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 25, 2012 2:54 pm

"Money talks and bullshit walks," Joey Coyle, 1987.

These so called leaders simply and truly don't care about the caregivers nor the kids nor the kids' families, almost all of whom are poor, people of color and usually DON"T VOTE anyway. It's a prime example of collateral damage on their way to the money, easy and abundant, that they want more than anything else.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 5:18 pm

I was one of those "poor, people of color' and I did and do vote because my vote is PART of my voice! Anyone who just thinks voting is all they have to do probably wishes on shooting stars and tries to find four leaf clovers for luck, too! The bottom line is that those who were well off and 'middle class' in 2009 are part of the throwaway society they call the working class poor now, and I think that's because Karma had to show a few folks what it feels like to be part of the have nots who are ignored because they are not of the class that feels they have all the knowledge, answers, education and money so they shouldn't have to deal with those who are less fortunate unless they are giving them something for free and walking away. This economy can make a poor person out of a rich one in two shakes of a lamb's tail or a new york minute -- and once they lose all their money, how many of their rich, classy friends will come calling then? There are few who will. If you have enough sense to vote, take your vote a level higher and make your VOICE HEARD by using your words -- write your congressmen/women, write your senators, ward leaders, council people, etc. Wear them out with your letters -- eventually they will hear you because they just want you to stop writing and when the media hears that a constituent constantly writes to be heard and is not, it becomes NEWS and when it becomes NEWS it becomes noticed. But you HAVE TO KEEP AT IT and you cannot give up. Once I wrote a politician and told him what I thought of his welfare reform approach -- I was all for welfare reform, but I wanted it applied in a way that would prevent the stupidity that followed in the first few years of the application of the bill. He wrote me back (actually it was one of his aides, we all know that, but he was still responsible) to tell me that basically it was his way or the high way. He was arrogant and insulting because I identified myself as a former welfare recipient. He thought because I was once poor, I didn't matter. Well, bud that was where you were wrong and when you decided to try and run for that slot that would make you president, it didn't happen for ya, now did it? See some of us poor folks are much more connected than you know and it will take more than you trying to block our right to vote to keep us down...remember, we survived SLAVERY...you think we can't survive YOU? HA HA HA....you are doing damage to yourself by trying to go backwards. We've learned our lessons of the past and we now know how to beat you at your own game because you don't think we're worth your time and effort. But you will find out the hard way, and we're still not going to stoop to the vile and vicious things you say and do when we win -- because we give honor to someone bigger and though your weapons may form, they WILL NOT PROSPER! So for those of you who want to make a change, commit yourselves to it; wear your so called political representatives out -- if you need me to help you write some letters, let me know, I'll help and it will cost you NOTHING. It's all about real change and real change takes methodical planning, efficient application, and consistent follow up and follow through. Don't listen to the talking heads who have a better way to do what every single person before them has attempted to do and failed because they didn't have enough time to apply their strategies. Just know that you have a voice and you have a right to make your voice heard -- if you use it and teach your kids to use it, things will change!

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 25, 2012 5:48 pm

Well Stated.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 25, 2012 5:33 pm

I agree-the people haven't spoke yet but we will and it will be loud. This is abuse 101 and we all know it.

Submitted by Paul Socolar on April 24, 2012 9:12 pm

My understanding is that at this point the "personnel" cuts they are proposing would involve givebacks in wages and benefits on the part of current employees. Then there's a whole separate category of proposed cuts relating to operations (facilities, transportation, etc) - could be givebacks, could be layoffs, could be privatization.

 

Submitted by Philly Parent & Teacher (not verified) on April 24, 2012 9:28 pm

Thanks for providing the summary. These are unsettling times for parents, staff, and anyone trying to live in Philly. New Orleans was wiped out by a hurricane. It feels like we are being wiped out by powerful people disconnected from schools and neighborhoods.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 25, 2012 6:18 pm

First of all, this "plan" is just that, a plan. It's some truth and some fiction mixed with lots of bluster. They'll be hell to pay if they try to force this down our throats so they won't. Having said that, we need to mobilize and that includes Jerry Jordan wherever he is.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 26, 2012 5:30 am

The "cuts" are being masked by under the radar hiring and continued salary increases and promotions with Grants and Accountability.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 26, 2012 6:49 am

Very interesting post. Could you elaborate a bit more?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 24, 2012 7:24 pm

Did Knudsen say that he will not attempt to cancel the contracts using Act 46?

Submitted by Paul Socolar on April 24, 2012 9:34 pm

District officials in recent history have declined to quote or make threats about Act 46 in their public comments, and that was true of Knudsen today. He expressed optimism that the unions would negotiate concessions.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 24, 2012 9:21 pm

He wouldn't dare to tear up Act 46. He's a corporate drone but too smart for that.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 24, 2012 9:35 pm

How about he give his consulting fee back to the children. Now that would never happen because he worked hard to get where he is in his career. He deserves to be paid in full for the job he does....why doesn't the same hold true for teachers, cleaners, building engineers, secretaries, nurses, counselors?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 3:27 pm

Seriously, the PFT needs to challenge ACT 46 again. The law was put out there. It's up to them to get it overturned. Use the resources they have and challenge, challenge, challenge....

Submitted by Mark (not verified) on April 25, 2012 4:32 pm

I agree. But the PFT is colluding with the politicians. The PFT is just as crooked (see: reelection of Jerry Jordan, the passing of the last contract, the silence re: all of this).

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 24, 2012 9:20 pm

How do you propose they create $218 million?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 24, 2012 9:41 pm

Does anyone here care about the kids in Philadelphia who attend the public schools? It would seem like no one is listening to them or their parents. We have some excellent schools where children continue to achieve. Since we have been unable to improve all public school where all children achieve at a high lever, what do you think we have done wrong. We applaud the high performers and punish those who do not. Please consider all of our students.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 24, 2012 11:36 pm

Knudsen seems to be a tool and his plan is mostly management consulting BS, but his main crime is putting lipstick on a pig. The responsibility for bringing out the pig belongs to the Governor, the General Assembly, and, most of all, the US House of Representatives. None of the school district's options will ever be good until it starts getting the outside funding it needs.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 25, 2012 12:37 am

Yes, fund the real schools fairly and stop the charter charade.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on July 1, 2012 8:44 am

Anyone who works for the system knows that Charter Schools are smoke and mirrors. It's our same children with uniforms and facilities that are newer and built to order. Take care of those same children and original facilities and it will be less expensive across the board. Now it's like a giant Privatization movement that will cost a lot more money and has already cost some employees their job. Cry about the budget all you want while you sneak the money into your own pockets and your Private friends!!!! We know the "real deal" here. It's a shame, like usual, the public does not know it.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on July 1, 2012 8:18 am

Ditto---Absolutely correct--hopefully, the Public with the leadership of the CHURCHES, not the politicians, will see the light and demand their rights.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 24, 2012 11:08 pm

13% pay cut? Who, exactly, will be able to afford to work here?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 5:58 am

Knudsen and Nixon have already cut the pay of non-represented employees by 5%, multiple furlough days, and pay towards benefits.Here they come CASA and PFT!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 3:12 pm

Reality is to keep you in check------The PFT will at some point have members walk for a few days to show these people there is no way to run the schools and find thousands of teachers to replace them. Hardline stance is what is needed to give the SRC and Mayor a good wake up call!!!! Go PFT!!!!!

Submitted by Jacob Russell (not verified) on April 25, 2012 9:02 am

No plans to cut back on prison construction.

The plan is--that's where they want our children to end up.

FIGHT BACK! The banks stole almost a half a BILLION from the school district--SHUT THEM DOWN till they pay it back!

40,000 students walking out with parents and teachers to shut down the banks!

Submitted by A Touch of Sense (not verified) on April 25, 2012 9:51 am

And part of the new plan is to borrow more money rather than creating funding streams and eliminating waste.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 9:51 am

When politicians look at how much should be spent on prisons, they look at 4th grade proficiency. So instead of putting money into funding the education of 4th graders and all kids, it's clear Corbett just expects them to end up in prison....

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 4:40 pm

Minor correction---it's actually 3rd grade reading levels that they look at.

Submitted by Zeeter (not verified) on April 25, 2012 11:16 am

Oh the drama. Oh the horror. They're closing schools built for 2500 students that now have around 500 students. Know how much it costs to maintain a school that size?

It needs to be consolidated. All of it. They are running at 67% capacity now and hope to get up to 85% in two years. Is that so bad?

Yes, teachers will be cut. There will be too many once the schools are closed. Administrators will be cut, as well. They are going from around 1500 people working in the district offices to 200.

This is GOOD for the students. They will at some point have more money spent for their particular school rather than having to split it with some other school.

It is a business decision. Yes. Sorry - running schools is a business, and it is not one that ever shows a profit. Without doing this the district will be at a $1.2 trillion dollar deficit by 2017. Unless you've got a money-making magic wand you should be embracing these cuts. They are good for the students and for once we are putting education above both the unions and the administrators.

Submitted by Ken Derstine on April 25, 2012 11:35 am

Schools are NOT a business. They are a public institution vital to a democratic society. The "profit" in good schools is having an educated population to run the society. Making money is not all there is to life!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on May 2, 2012 3:39 pm

Those that run schools as if they are not a business are probably running them as if they are their own private slush accounts. Good entrepreneurs would probably run the Philly school district better than it has been run, and they surely would not have agreed (or let their legal department agree) to the ridiculously horrific terms of the former Superintendent's contract. Now anyone else who wants to rape the district can use that now historic document as their 'past practice and procedure' for what to ask for from Philly's school board and city government. Was that woman related to the Mayor or something? Things that make you go, Hmmmmmm....

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 3:50 pm

You definitely sound like a Charter School supporter. Yeah that's right----keep spending millions for Charter Schools. In case you haven't heard ACKERMAN cause a $629 million hole in this District--A lot of it on frivilous spending--Charter Schools and millions in camera equipment for a high school that didn't even work properly.

Submitted by ES (not verified) on April 25, 2012 5:35 pm

I'm not sure if you ever stepped foot in a classroom..with your talk of education being a "business". It does have a business end...meeting payroll with the dollars it receives from taxes and other sources. However, the "business" of educating children is not about accounts payable and receivable.

I WAS a teacher for 36 years. Education is being able to communicate information to others...and the best teachers have a gift, like artists and musicians. Their "audiences" are varied. Not all kids learn the same way and need varied approaches. This takes time, patience and LOTS of hours of planning...all of which is done AFTER the school day.

To assume teachers simply put out the information and fill up kids' brains is an insult both to the children and their teachers. I think it is high time for those who believe education is simply a business, to go into a class and see what it takes to keep it going. Many classes now have larger numbers of kids with many outside problems that teachers must deal with, in addition to presenting the regular material.....see what it takes to be a teacher OUTSIDE of the dollars. The additional staff that is now being cut means that the kids have fewer adults to help them in areas that may impede their "regular" learning.

A mind set such as yours is one which dooms the public educational system...something that has succeeded with many great minds in this country of ours. Not everyone can afford private education, nor should they need to. Keeping this a great LITERATE nation means making our public educational system the number one priority....whatever it takes!

Submitted by Building Engineer (not verified) on April 25, 2012 1:50 pm

Have a PA Lottery just for the School District...the blue collar worker's will buy most of the tickes while the super rich keep skimming from the sweat and hard work of the people they plan to layoff. WE ARE THE MODERN DAY ROME....ABOUT TO COLLAPSE!!! Compare take home pay to the pay they say we make before deductions...kinda makes me sick....with all the inflated prices for life necessities...where is all this money going? GREED in Motion.....there is a storm a coming. I would like Mr. Knudsen spend a few hours in my building covering my shift and look at my pay check...then make his dicisions. Paid Slavery with layoff looming is no way to live the American Dream. GOD save us all. With that said ..I love my job and will keep doing my best...because it really is about the children.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 25, 2012 5:04 pm

JOIN the fight--this isn't nearly over yet. The FOLKS will speak as a hostile mass and these semi persons will feel our wrath.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 1:34 pm

I hope teachers don't get laid off again! We have worked so hard this year, and we get nothing. I don't think teachers should take any form of pay cut! It looks like the teaching profession is being looked at as just a "job" that someone could perform at minimum wage. Until we start paying and treating teachers with respect, there will be no improvement. Yes, you will have college grads to fill up all the charter school positions...but what happens when they have families of their own? it will be an ongoing cycle. Do people realize that begin a good teacher takes time and practice?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 25, 2012 2:30 pm

What I do not understand is how anyone in Philadelphia continues to allow the school district to lay off staff that are paid through grant funding for high profile and successful student programing, then use the restricted funds for the upper level staff members and pet projects. It's unbelievable to me that people can bring viable programming to the district and show them how the program would pay for itself after the first year but would say no to that and instead pay thousands and thousands of dollars for programs that don't work because they want to make sure their friends are still employed. And why is it that some politico's wives can be so dismissive of exceptional and extraordinary people in the district who work hard and long, long hours to help kids become self confident and engaged -- all because that politico's wife wants to throw her weight around? It's time to stop playing craps with the lives of children and the future of a city whose leadership seem hell bent on only wanting to hear themselves and their high class friends talk, but aren't willing to really work with low income families -- just their kids. If you don't educate the whole family in some way, you are missing the point, and if you continue to just purport that programming and education should be for children, then don't expect parents to help these kids with their homework and help engage them, because a lot of them come from parents and grandparents who were generations that the district previously dissed. Today's kids and their parents are the dissed generation: Disenfranchised, Disengaged, Disadvantaged, Disinterested -- just DISSED. I'm so sick of it I could just puke and those who call themselves leaders -- where are you in this? Put your money, time and commitment where your mouth is and help the adult caregivers and the children learn. If they KNOW better, they have a better chance to DO better, and the old habits die hard. Give them time to learn and correct their mistakes and they will become your strongest allies.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 26, 2012 2:23 am

All the unions affiliated with the School District of Phila., are doing hardly anything but being "shocked."

What don't you get? Like that song titled "This Is It" -this in the overdue time to implement a no -- holds -- barred action immediately.

Otherwise, are you going just sit by like a bystander and get bullied by greedy businesses operators, corrupt, greedy politicians, and incompetent, greedy administrators trying to take over to make massive money, and gain power at the expense of the students?

In addition, all STAKEHOLDERS including students, parents, teachers, principals, staff, and people in the community that actually care about children and education need to do the same.

We can win this battle if we stand up and tell ourselves and illustrate to others (who are now making those decisions), I'd had enough and I'm not going take it anymore. Let's be visible, and auditory to the public, and as Pres.Geo. Bush put it -- the "deciders" currently.

Submitted by Building Engineer (not verified) on April 26, 2012 3:01 pm

What takes years to build can all be gone in the blink of an eye. Fear of the unknown future is a tool used by the rich against people who work and care for what happens in the world. They use the media to stir the mix our senses with false hoods and over blown drama. We feed on it. We need to step back, look at the big picture without personal bias and educate ourselves on how we are being manipulated. They(The Greedy) need us..without us they are nothing! We worked hard to get what we have and deserve it. We will hold our ground and fight for what we believe in. Don't let them make you panic. All the unions will stand firm and we will prevail as always. We are America! WE must make our stand NOW! The money is out there. Let's make them break their PIGGY Banks Open and get back what they stole from us.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 26, 2012 4:23 pm

You are so right, especially about the part that the money is out there. Us teachers, cleaners, building engineers, nurses, counselors and secretaries did not cause this mess. We need to stand together and show them that we arent paying their price!!! We all work hard to give our children a home and put food on the table.

Submitted by anonymous. (not verified) on April 26, 2012 9:11 pm

Not to sound melodramatic, but America is at a crossroads. The so called Great Recession was caused by the 1%ers due to greed and miscalculation. Those same people are using it against us and we must stop them. This is the time or the time will pass along with our rights and they'll turn back the clock 100 years on us.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 30, 2012 12:42 am

US UNIONS PFT,1201,FOOD SERVICE AND OTHERS NEED OUR UNION PEOPLE TO FIGHT TO BRING DOWN ACT 46 IN A COURTROOM,IT THAT DOESNT WORK PULL A WILDCAT STRIKE,ALL UNIONS I REPEAT ALL UNIONS.WHAT CAN THEY DO? ? I BET THEY FIND THE MONEY REAL FAST.....
TAKE NO PRISONERS! !!!!!!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 30, 2012 12:21 am

SCABS WILL NEVER,EVER MAKE IT INTO THESE BUILDINGS ... I PROMISE. YOU ALL

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on April 30, 2012 12:25 am

SCABS WILL NEVER,EVER MAKE IT INTO THESE BUILDINGS ... I PROMISE. YOU ALL

Submitted by The Janitor (not verified) on May 1, 2012 11:20 pm

Well looks like the golden teet has tarnished. The sdp will always lose money because there are so many coffee pots in 220 ohh 440. Everyone just walks around with a cup of coffee in their hands making 6 figures.Looks like its game over for all unions.The SRC are so uneducated about what is needed.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on May 2, 2012 3:01 pm

“…Outburst(s) of anti-public school, anti-teacher legislation is no accident. It is the work of a shadowy group called the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC. Founded in 1973, ALEC is an organization of nearly 2,000 conservative state legislators. Its hallmark is promotion of privatization and corporate interests in every sphere, not only education, but healthcare, the environment, the economy, voting laws, public safety, etc. It drafts model legislation that conservative legislators take back to their states and introduce as their own “reform” ideas.”

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT, YOU ASK?

“It turns out that ALEC crafted the “Stand Your Ground” legislation that empowered George Zimmerman to kill an unarmed teenager with the defense that he (the shooter) felt threatened. When the bright light of publicity was shone on ALEC, a number of corporate sponsors dropped out, including McDonald’s, Kraft, Coca-Cola, Mars, Wendy’s, Intuit, Kaplan, and PepsiCo. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation said that it would not halt its current grant to ALEC, but pledged not to provide new funding. ALEC has some 300 corporate sponsors, including Walmart, the Koch Brothers, and AT&T, so there’s still quite a lot of corporate support for its free-market policies. ALEC claimed that it is the victim of a campaign of intimidation.”

PEOPLE, the above text was taken (emphasis added by ME) word for word from The Answer Sheet, a column by Valerie Strauss published in the Washington Post today. The article was called “Ravitch: A primer on the group driving school reform” and was written by Diane Ravitch. Be aware of the sources of the propaganda and such that are attempting to flood our thinking and alleging “intimidation.” Stand Your Ground is the backbone of intimidation for people of color and the disenfranchised and those who think that the fight will be fair in the next Presidential election might well want to consider that ole saying by Betty Davis because it is definitely going to be “a bumpy night.”

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on May 23, 2012 3:03 pm

Something you never ever hear about is consultants that the district pays. They pay an enormous amount money to consultants but no one will report it. For example the district has its own law department but hires many law firms as consultants, will anyone step up and make this public? Kristen,the notebook,jeff cole,the great seiu does anyone have the balls, can't hear you. The seiu has a protest about budget cuts and is ready to cave on concessions but nothing about the over 100 million the district gives to politically conected consultants.Cmon somebody step up and look at the law firms connections.

Submitted by BrassBandit (not verified) on July 9, 2012 2:16 pm

Keep on scraping!!!!!!

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