Monday night the Board of Education will meet with city officials to discuss upcoming contract negotiations with the teacher’s union. [Board of Education Agenda, 9/26/2013] The Bridgeport Education Association’s (BEA) three-year contract with the district will expire in 2014, and negations are due to begin sometime this fall. Last time around, the teacher‘s union agreed… Continue reading BOE Meets to Discuss BEA Contract
After the endorsed slate lost in the Democratic primary, Mayor Finch offered an olive branch to the victors, inviting them to meet and discuss educational issues. The challenger slate—Dave Hennessey, Howard Gardner and Andre Baker—refused the mayor’s offer. Instead of politely refusing, however, their Working Family Party backers flung baseless accusations about the meeting invitation.… Continue reading Challenger Slate Rejects Mayor Finch’s Olive Branch
“It ends here. We know there is nowhere else to go.” Norman Pattis, the attorney representing Carmen Lopez and Deborah Williams-Reyes said this during Monday’s arguments to the state Supreme Court. He’s right. Monday was the last stage in a long process, and now it is up to the Supreme Court to determine whether they… Continue reading Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Vallas Case
Last week Andre Baker, Working Families Party and Democratic candidate for Bridgeport’s school board, told the Connecticut Post that he would be willing to work with Superintendent Paul Vallas. [Connecticut Post, 9/12/2013] That may not be the case, according to an article posted on The Atlantic’s website Tuesday. [The Atlantic, 9/17/2013] According to the Working… Continue reading The Atlantic Reveals WFP Looking to Oust Vallas
The challenger slate, Howard Gardner, Dave Hennessey and Andre Baker, won Tuesday’s Democratic primary in a landslide. Many, including the Connecticut Post, are calling this victory proof of a growing anti-Vallas, anti-Finch consensus. I’m not certain we can assume that much, considering turnout was an anemic 11-12%. Most likely, Tuesday was the result of a… Continue reading If Elected, Would Garner, Hennessey and Baker Oust Vallas Before Year’s End?
Are Bridgeport public schools failing our children? Critics of education reform tend to blame poverty and external factors as the main reasons students perform poorly in urban school districts. I do not want to discount poverty as a factor, which is certainly an issue that affects school performance. However, it’s clear that we could be… Continue reading Park City Prep Charter School Model for Success?
Teach for America has been hot-button issue in Bridgeport as of late. The district’s move to slightly increase the number of Teach for America (TFA) teachers employed became controversial at last month’s Board of Education meeting. A lot of the fear stems from the perception that TFA teachers are less effective in the classroom because… Continue reading Recent Study Concludes TFA Teachers Have Positive Impact on Student Achievement
Charter school critics often point to high suspension and expulsion rates as the reasons charters tend to outperform their traditional public school counterparts. Anti-reform advocates have claimed that charters get rid of challenging students (English language learners, Special Ed, etc.) during testing by suspending or expelling them, which in turn artificially raises test scores. A… Continue reading New Study by CER: Are Expulsion Rates Really Driving Charter School Success?
Unofficial results show the challenger slate winning Tuesday’s Board of Education Democratic primary by a 1,000 vote margin. The challenger slate beat out the endorsed slate almost 2-to-1 despite the endorsed slate’s initial 841 absentee ballot lead. Turnout was very low; roughly only 10-12% of Bridgeport Democrats voted in Tuesday’s primary. The challengers, Andre Baker,… Continue reading Challenger Slate Leads BOE Race in Unofficial Results
For Bridgeport’s Board of Education, ending a school board meeting on time is a historic event. Generally meetings run at least an hour over the time allotted; however, Monday’s board meeting was shorter and quieter than usual— most likely due to the absence of three of the board’s more outspoken members. Board Chair Reverend Kenneth… Continue reading Bridgeport School Board Meeting Ends on Time