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NCLB Outrages

Here They Go Again

Ohanian Comment: I agree with Stephen Krashen that The true reading crisis in the US are policy makers who do not read the research. But the true outrage is that union leaders and professional organizations do not stand up to this. Never have. Never will. . . unless their members break their silence and demand action.

In fact, the IRA Director, Government Relations Rich Long says, "We have made progress." Progress being defined as how big the pots of consulting money will be.

Long once told me, "We never tell Senator Kennedy or Representative George Miller [chairs, respectively, of the Senate and House education committees] anything they don't want to hear."

Got that? It's the NEA version of "We've got to keep a seat at the table." Here is the latest conversation between Senator Murray and NEA President Dennis van Roekel mentioned on the NEA website.

The AFT website notes that the Senate failed to pass Patty Murray's amendment to fully fund NCLB. Oh, and the sole "November News" at AFT is this headline Contract Ratified at Chicago's First Unionized Charters.

The only recent mention of the U. S. Senate on the NCTE website is noting its support for the designation of October 20, 2009, as the National Day on Writing.

These details serve as a reminder of how your union and professional dues are spent.

Murray's bill is S. 2740. Thomas (Library of Congress) has not yet received the text from the Government Printing Office, but you can check back here soon.

From: Rich Long


Sent: Thursday, November 05, 2009 6:56 PM

Subject: Senate introduces LEARN Act

Late today (Thursday, November 05, 2009) Senator Murray (D-WA) introduced the comprehensive literacy professional development bill the LEARN Act. It's number is S. 2740.

We will be putting out a more detailed summary shortly, but basically it provides $2.35 billion for literacy professional development. The money is divided as follows:

$350 million for age 0 - 5 See It's the Poverty, Stupid, Not Pre-K Skills.

$1 billion for K - 3

$1 billion for 4 - 12.

The House of Representatives will be introducing its companion measure within a few days. We have a long haul ahead of us to take this through the legislative process (and thanks to the many of you who have helped put this together), and let me warn you, the legislative process will have many twists and turns and the outcome is never perfect. But what we have right now isn't working. Soon, we will be asking you to consider writing your Senators and Members of Congress to ask them to support this measure.

But for right now, we have made progress.

Richard M. Long, Ed.D.
Director, Government Relations
International Reading Association

The name of the slough was Despond.

--John Bunyan (1628-1688)
Pilgrim's Progress

by Stephen Krashen

Education Week blog Curriculum Matters
posted an announcement
of a new K-12 literacy bill from Sen. Murray from Washington State. They provide a link to Sen. Murray's proposal[pdf file]. Here is my comment, posted on the website:

Here we go again, more of what doesn't work: "Providing students with explicit, systematic, and developmentally appropriate instruction in
reading and writing, including but not limited to vocabulary development, phonemic awareness,
reading comprehension ...". Only briefly mentioned: "the use of diverse texts" but not how they will be used. As usual, no mention of what really works, lots of good stories, read alouds, plenty of access to books, (libraries!!), exciting literature discussions. . . .

The true reading crisis in the US are policy makers who do not read the research.

— Stephen Krashen, Rich Long, and Patty Murray
New Legislation to Demean Teachers


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