Last night at East High School, noted author and education activist Dian Ravitch spoke, via Skype, to approximately one hundred, twenty-five people on various issues of concern to the education community. Some of her comments are below.

Diane Ravitch: Teacher Tenure
“Tenure is perceived as being a lifetime job and it is not a lifetime job. When teachers get tenure, all it means is that they have the right to due process. If somebody wants to fire them, if their principal wants to fire them they have to show cause, they have to have a hearing and they have to present the evident. I don’t think that’s unjust, I think its fair.”

Diane Ravitch: Privatization
“Privatization is wrong. If you look at the best performing nations of the world . . . they haven’t privatized their schools. They don’t have charter schools, they don’t have vouchers, they have strong public school systems, where their teachers are experienced and respected.”

Diane Ravitch: Common Core
“I am opposed to the overuse of testing. . . I’m a strong believer that the test should be made by the teacher. The teacher has two great advantages, one he or she knows what they taught so they’re testing what they taught. . . When you have Pearson . . . doing the testing, they don’t know what they taught and you have to teach what they test and that’s upside down and backward. . . Testing will only get worse under common core.”

Diane Ravitch: Charter Schools
“While there are some good charters, most of the charters are not good schools. . . they’re chains, it’s a kind of a chain-store mentality where you deliver a standard pack throughout the country. . . the people leading the charters are making a lot of money . . . education money should go to children. . . they’re a ripoff of the taxpayers. . . they use their public dollars to give very sizable campaign contributions . . the legislature creates the charters, the charter takes the money, and makes contributions to the legislature and the legislature writes even more favorable legistion. . . ”

More from Ms. Ravitch tomorrow.

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