Lisa Gibes is 50CAN’s vice president of strategy and external relations. She lives in San Francisco, CA.

Here are news and opinion stories educators, advocates, policy wonks and makers are talking about today:

News & analysis:
Turnarounds Take Leadership, Humility

There is a connotation of simplicity that comes with the phrase “school turnaround,” as if it involved a business merely in need of better management and modern marketing. There is also at least a hint of arrogance. (Education Week) 

Are high-risk and district No Child waivers illegal?
An unprecedented set of recent Education Department decisions about No Child Left Behind waivers is at the least an overreach and at the very worst illegal, a chorus of critics say. (Politico) 

Jan McDaniel, former chief at WCCO-TV and Red Cross, joins MinnCAN advocacy board

Jan McDaniel, the former WCCO-TV general manager and a former CEO of the Twin Cities Red Cross has joined the advisory board of MinnCAN, the education advocacy group. (MinnPost) 

PA auditor says charter school got $1.2M in improper tax dollars

Pennsylvania’s auditor general said he found several instances of “significant noncompliance” with laws at the state’s largest charter school, Chester Community Charter School. (Pennsylvania Independent) 

Amid Schools Crisis, Teachers Union Is Under Fire
A School Reform Commission (SRC) meeting descended into familiar chaos on Aug. 15 as the state-controlled board suspended portions of the Public School Code, allowing the Philadelphia School District to ignore teacher seniority in hiring back some of the 3,859 teachers, counselors, aides and other staff laid off in June. (Philadelphia City Paper) 

View Points:
Let’s hear it for proficiency

In last week’s Gadfly, Mike Petrilli proposed doing away with “proficiency” as the fulcrum of school-level accountability. He declared—as have many others over the years—that proficiency levels per se say more about a school’s demographics than its educational effectiveness and what really matters—he came close to saying all that matters—is the academic growth taking place within that school. (Flypaper) 


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