Teachers, the AFT is killing you... Chicago Teachers Union should not embrace 'Common Core'

Old news becomes news when you notice it for the first time. And it becomes news again when you revisit it a few years later and see new things. The information in the bottom part of this article was posted on Dec. 5, 2006, but curiosity provoked me to revisit it on September 1, 2011. What a Back-to-School slap in the face to teachers.

Take a look at what David Sherman and the AFT are up to in supporting the Common Core in 2011. For starters, see Catherine Gewertz's Education Week blog, Feb. 23, 2011. Attention AFT members: Your money is paying for your own destruction. And if you think this is an exaggeration, read on.

Here is an updated list of Teachscape partners.

If that isn't enough, Teachscape's Online Resouces in literacy, feature the work of: Isabel Beck, Reid Lyon, Sally Shaywitz, Louisa Moats, Catherine Snow, Nell Duke, Don Deshler, Connie Juel, Edward Kame'enui, and Michael Pressley. Here is the claim: These resources offer a foundational understand of reading at all age levels, building the skills of teachers to develop academic English for their students.

AND, thanks to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, there's more: Framework for Teaching Efficiency System: High Stakes Teacher Evaluations

Getting angry yet?

There's plenty more.

For starters, there's Chicago. Hey, Chicago, what are you doing? What happened to that refreshing degree of independence we saw with the last election?

These two snippets from the Chicago Tribune, Aug. 31, 2011, look like business as usual.

"After weeks of public feuding over teacher salaries and longer school days, Chicago Public Schools chief Jean-Claude Brizard and the teachers union came together Tuesday to embrace a more rigorous curriculum for CPS students beginning the 2012-13 school year.

"At a luncheon with civic leaders from the City Club of Chicago, Brizard announced plans to implement the Common Core State Standards curriculum, a national initiative to improve student performance in key subjects such as math and reading by favoring comprehension and analysis over rote memorization. . . ."

And worse. . . The article continues:

". . . Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis said Tuesday [August 30, 2011] that the state standards curriculum adds a "breadth and depth" of instruction that has eroded away in this era of high-stakes testing.

"'We know how important it is for our students to not just skim the surface, but to dig deep and do some really good work,' Lewis said. 'We're very excited about this.'

Lewis said the union recently received a grant from the American Federation of Teachers to develop lesson plans for the state standards curriculum that would be introduced this year, including a component for English Language Learners.

"'We want people to understand, there are no silver bullets, there are no magic bullets (in education),' Lewis said. 'The best way to roll these things out is to work together.'

That sure sounds like the party line — straight from David Sherman, who holds the post of Consultant in the office of the AFT President. Formerly working out of the D. C. office of AFT, how he seem to be working out of AFT Local 943 which has its main offices in Oak Lawn, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. For more about what Mr. Sherman's been up to, see below.

Actually, the day before, on Aug. 30, a press release from the Chicago Teachers Union explained things, announcing receipt of a $600,000 grant from the AFT.

The Chicago Teachers Union Quest Center awarded $600,000 American Federation of Teachers Innovation Fund Grant (08/30/2011)

The Chicago Teachers Union Quest Center has been awarded a grant for $600,000 ($200,000 for each of the next three years) by the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) for their proposal to hire teams of teacher leaders to partner with the Union’s curriculum and instruction experts. THE GRANT WILL CREATE MODEL UNITS OF INSTRUCTION, CLASSROOM PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENTS, AND MATERIALS ALIGNED TO THE NEW, HIGHER AND MORE RIGOROUS SET OF STATE-ADOPTED COMMON CORE STATE STANDARDS (CCSS). [Emphasis added.]

The CCSS identify what students are expected to know and be able to do in math and English language arts. Eight teacher development teams will also train colleagues across the district to tailor the model units to meet the unique learning needs of each classroom and capitalize on the pedagogical strengths of each teacher.

This is the first time CTU has been awarded this competitive grant. The CTU Quest Center is one of only five recipients of the Innovation Fund grants, supported by the AFT and SEVERAL PRIVATE PHILANTHROPIES. [Emphasis added.]

The Chicago Teachers Union sold out way too cheaply. And who did they sell out to? The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Broad Foundation were among big funders of this AFT grant. Whatever Bill wants, Bill gets — even from the Chicago Teachers Union.

Dollars to donuts. Chicago teachers don't have an inkling of what they're in for. They would be well advised to read the Publishers Criteria for the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts and Literacy, Grades 3 - 12. This information for publishers — on what to publish — is written by the two chief writers of the Common Core Standards, David Coleman and Susan Pimentel.

Coleman speaks fondly of the AFT: "The AFT teachers took the lead in shaping many aspects of the standards." Coleman's name is all over the AFT website.

I wish that every officer in the Chicago Teachers Union would sit through David Coleman's two hour Bringing the Common Core to Life, presentation at the New York State Education building, April 28, 2011. Coleman points to his alliance with the AFT:

There is no voice in these standards stronger than the voice of teachers who demanded that we focus on what matters most and provide the time for teachers to teach and for students to practice. That includes formal organizations like the UFT in New York City and the AFT statewide and NYSUT, who are deeply involved in this work. . . .

Chicago teachers should definitely watch David's Coleman's presentation to see what their union has signed them up for. For starters, here is a transcript of Coleman's lesson on Martin Luther King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail."

And there's more. The New York State Department of Education is beginning to offer sample lessons, demonstrating how to take the heart and soul out of reading. The Chicago Teachers Union now has money to help them catch up.

Money talks, and it carries a big stick. What Bill Gates wants, Bill Gates gets. And Al Shanker is smiling from the grave. (by Susan Ohanian, 12/5/2006)

The long and short of this is that David Sherman, on the Teachscape Board of Directors, serves as a consultant in the Office of the President of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) in Washington, DC, where he is coordinating the AFT's work in preparation for the reauthorization of NCLB (No Child Left Behind).

(See below for Teachscape partners and other board members.) At the Teachscape website, we learn:

Since its inception, Teachscape has worked closely with the American Federation of Teachers to develop and implement professional development programs that effectively support teachers working in AFT school districts. The AFT and Teachscape have teamed up to co-develop a curriculum of professional development support for new teachers seeking specific guidance in highly effective strategies for classroom management.

Question: How effectively supported do these teachers feel? Oh, and McGraw-Hill has held a financial interest in Teachscape since 2001.

McGraw plans new K-6 support NEW YORK, Sept. 22, 2001

Publisher McGraw-Hill bought an interest in Teachscape, a two-year-old web content provider, and will launch K-6 teacher training and support related to SRA / McGraw-Hill products. Anticipated features include lesson plans, samples of student work and video case studies of exemplary teaching, McGraw said. --Text and Academic Authors Association

The Education Intelligence Agency made some interesting observations nearly years ago. Education Intelligence Agency January 7, 2002

The Interlocking Directorates of Professional Development. The National Education Association is negotiating a deal with Teachscape, a private firm that will provide web-based teacher professional development services. You can be forgiven if your first reaction to this news is "So what?" The deal seems even more logical when you discover that Teachscape already has the American Federation of Teachers as a partner. Teachscape's professional development system includes: video-based case studies that illustrate and analyze exemplary teaching in real classrooms; examples of student work from featured classrooms; study groups that promote professional dialogue and mutual support; tools for self-reflection; and self-assessment opportunities. If this sounds remarkably similar to the requirements for achieving national certification, it shouldn't surprise you to learn that the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) is also a partner of Teachscape.

National certification has been one of the hallmarks of new unionism and the call for teacher professionalism. Indeed, many NEA and AFT officials sit on the NBPTS board. So it shouldn't surprise you to learn that David B. Sherman sits on Teachscape's board of directors. Sherman is vice president of the United Federation of Teachers (New York City) and also sits on the board of the Teachers Union Reform Network, the primary internal union organization in support of new unionism.

Well, it's only natural that these groups cooperate and interact in order to maintain teacher control of the profession and avert a corporate takeover of the essence of public education. They are joined in this mission by Michael Finnerty, president and chief operating officer of Teachscape. What did Finnerty do before Teachscape? He, according to his bio, "served as an officer of Edison Schools Inc. from its inception in 1992. He participated in every aspect of the development of the company, from the conceptual design of product and business plan development to current operations in 21 states, which generate more than $350 million in annual revenue."

The ideological divide between unions and corporations over public education is real, but THE PURSUIT OF PROFIT NEVER SEEMS QUITE SO BAD WHEN YOU GET YOUR OWN CUT.Teachers should ponder this while they instruct students out of textbooks from McGraw-Hill, which, by the way, is another partner of Teachscape and "has made an equity investment" in it. (emphasis added)

What is Teachscape?

From the website: Teachscape is a technology-enabled professional development services company that provides research-based, data-driven, integrated professional learning for educators. We collaborate with districts to achieve one compelling goal--to raise student achievement through the delivery of rigorous, differentiated instruction in every classroom in every school.

Clients and Partners

Clients Teachscape provides research-based, data-driven, integrated professional development services to thousands of educators across the country through engagements with: Hundreds of school districts

*Statewide initiatives

*Universities for Teachscape graduate courses and for state-mandated professional development courses

*Educational organizations such as The Princeton Review and the AMERICAN FEDERATION OF TEACHERS

Literacy Initiatives

*New York City Department of Education--Collaborating on the development of online intervention resources for the citywide Intervention Initiative to support all elementary schools; also providing on-site professional development support to Regional Directors of Intervention Services

*The State of Ohio--Supporting a State Reading Institute designed to serve all teachers in the state of Ohio. The Institute will provide professional development that focuses on pedagogical issues such as scaffolding student learning and differentiating reading instruction.

*The State of Arizona--Initiating state-wide professional development to build the knowledge and skills of teachers in literacy and other content domains

*The State of California--Providing professional development and support for Reading First teachers focused on implementing the state's newly adopted reading curriculum and materials

*Minnesota Department of Education--Supporting more than 500 teachers in approximately 30 schools through a Reading Academy built on scientifically-based literacy approaches of Reading First

*NEFEC (North East Florida Educational Consortium) --Providing a Rapid Reading Response system to support the work of school leaders, district leaders, and teachers in implementing research-based literacy practices

*The State of Arkansas--On-site coaches working side by side with teachers and administrators in several school districts to increase student achievement in language arts

*Shiprock, NM--On-site coaches working side by side with teachers and administrators in several school districts to increase student achievement in language arts

*Brevard County (Florida) Public Schools--Scaffolding student learning and high yield instructional strategies

*Stetson University, FL--Helping university faculty to integrate online resources about reading and English language learners into their coursework

*Milwaukee Public Schools--Helping nearly 1,000 teachers implement an effective balanced literacy course of study

*York, VA--Supporting online professional studies for teachers in foundations of reading

*Region 9, NYC--Supported study groups focused on balanced literacy approaches

*Region 6, NYC--Worked with teachers in low-performing K-12 schools to help them improve their practice in teaching comprehension and vocabulary development

*Region 6 (originally District 18), NYC--Supported literacy coaches and, through them, teachers in grades K-7

*Region 5 (originally District 27), NYC--Supported literacy study groups, grades K-5

Mathematics Service Offerings

*Seeing Math--A federally-funded initiative implemented in collaboration with The Concord Consortium in various sites in South Dakota, Massachusetts, Texas, and Florida

*Region 5, NYC--Offering mathematics institutes, online graduate courses, and online professional development courses for instructional leaders and teachers

*Region 2, NYC--Providing support for Princeton Review's consultants working in Region 2 schools, K-12; providing coaching support to directors supervising math consultants

*California State University, Dominguez Hills--Serving 800 pre-service teachers in a hybrid online/on-site Mathematics Methods course of study

*Arkansas--On-site coaches working side by side with teachers and administrators in several school districts to increase student achievement in mathematics

*Shiprock, NM--On-site coaches working side by side with teachers and administrators in several school districts to increase student achievement in mathematics

*Former Districts 9 and 31, NYC--In collaboration with the Teacher Center, provided support to improve the mathematics practice of both special and general education teachers under a State Improvement Grant program

*Touro College--Provided graduate courses in the fundamentals of mathematics

*Region 5, NYC--In collaboration with the Teacher Center, provided support for more than 100 K-8 mathematics coaches in school-based study groups

*Region 6, NYC--Supported schools with low performance in mathematics, grades K-12

Instructional Leadership Service Offerings

*The NYC Leadership Academy--Developed online resources for the Aspiring Principals program

*Various NYC Regions--Through the Council for Supervisors and Administrators' Leaders on Line program, developed online resources on classroom walkthrough and observation for instructional leaders

New Teacher Induction Service Offerings

*Fairfax, VA--Supporting teacher study groups on effective questioning in the teaching of mathematics and lesson design

*Through the AFT--Supporting groups in Texas, Colorado, Montana, New York, Florida, and Illinois to help new teachers become confident and capable practitioners

*Philadelphia--Providing state-mandated induction services for new teachers

*Iredell-Statesville, NC--Supporting initial entry and lateral entry teachers on foundations of effective teaching and elementary and secondary classroom management practices

*Region 3, NYC--Supported new teacher study groups that focused on the essentials of classroom management and on the key principles of effective pedagogy

English Language Learning Initiatives

*California State University, Dominguez Hills--Provided an online/on-site course on English Language Development for pre-service teachers

*San Francisco Unified School District--Provided a university instructor-facilitated course designed for teachers to earn their CLAD certificate

*Santa Clara Unified School District--Provided a university instructor-facilitated course designed for teachers to earn their CLAD certificate

Early Childhood Initiatives

*Miami, FL; Baton Rouge, LA; Columbus, OH; and Prince Georges County, MD--Supporting literacy initiatives and studying effective ways to scale these initiatives with funding through an IERI (Interagency Education Research Initiative) grant

*Houston, TX--Supporting the capacity of pre-kindergarten teachers to provide research-based approaches to early literacy

Other Initiatives

*Faith in the City, Center City Consortium, Archdiocese of Chicago, and Archdiocese of Indianapolis--Providing professional learning programs for instructional leaders and teachers on data analysis/design, high yield instructional strategies, and differentiated content studies

*Western Governors University--Providing competency-based resources to support students in teacher education programs

*New York State United Teachers (NYSUT)--Supporting a high yield strategies graduate course to be facilitated by NYSUT faculty

*West Memphis, AR--Training paraprofessionals in classroom management

*State of Nevada--In collaboration with UNLV, developing adaptations to Teachscape resources for teachers of students with special needs

*White Lake, WI--Providing professional development for a geographically isolated district comprising one school labeled as "in need of improvement"

*Bakersfield, CA--Implementing a comprehensive school reform effort in the district's low-performing schools


In addition to having partnerships with schools and districts across the country, whose collaborations continually inform the company's content offerings and service model, Teachscape works with some of the most respected educational organizations and institutions in the nation. These collaborations produce world-class programs and services for clients. Teachscape partners include:

*Algebra/Geometry Consortium More than 100 school sites across the nation are participating in the Teachscape Algebra/Geometry Consortium. The Consortium provides math educators with the opportunity to better serve students through an instructional management system, resources, and high-impact strategies acquired through this professional assessment system and professional development initiative. This system consistently produces measurable results in schools regardless of size or bell schedule.

*American Educational Studies Association (AESA) Teachscape is a recognized and respected business member and an active promoter of AESA and service agencies nationwide.

*American Federation of Teachers (AFT), AFL-CIO Building an education network that addresses the real-life needs and concerns of classroom teachers requires the support and collaboration of teachers' organizations. Since its inception, Teachscape has worked closely with the American Federation of Teachers to develop and implement professional development programs that effectively support teachers working in AFT school districts. The AFT and Teachscape have also teamed up to co-develop a curriculum of professional development support for new teachers seeking specific guidance in highly effective strategies for classroom management.

*Andrews University Andrews University partners with Teachscape to provide three semester hours of graduate credit for online courses taken by teachers in Michigan, Minnesota, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Texas, and Ohio. Andrews is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), and is approved by the Michigan State Department of Education.

*Biological Sciences Curriculum Study (BSCS) Cardinal Stritch University Cardinal Stritch University partners with Teachscape to provide three semester hours of graduate credit for online courses taken by teachers in Wisconsin, California, and Arizona. Stritch is accredited by NCATE, the Higher Learning Commission, and is a member of NCA. Stritch is also accredited by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.

* Center for Improving the Readiness of Children for Learning and Education (CIRCLE) Teachscape is working with Dr. Susan Landry and CIRCLE in the Department of Pediatrics at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston to develop online courses supporting the professional development of teachers of early literacy and language development in preschool and Head Start. One of the center's overall goals is to improve teacher professional development in the area of early child development, including pre-literacy, social/behavioral competence, and parent involvement. The center currently runs a major new initiative to enhance the quality of preschool education in the state of Texas. Dr. Landry is a Developmental Psychologist and the Michael Matthew Knight Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. She is also Chief of the Division of Developmental Pediatrics and Director of CIRCLE. The Concord Consortium Teachscape is producing its first set of elementary mathematics courses for the professional development of teachers in partnership with The Concord Consortium as part of the Seeing Math Telecommunications Project (funded by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Educational Research and Improvement). The project includes the dissemination, research, and evaluation of these courses.

*The Concord Consortium is a nonprofit educational research and development group that assists schools internationally to realize the educational promise of technology. The Concord Consortium has become a leader in the development and delivery of online courses, as well as the development of curriculum and new approaches to science and mathematics instruction.

*Houston Independent School District (HISD) Paraprofessional Training The Paraprofessional Series provides required training by offering seven courses that prepare paraprofessionals for their classroom role. Currently, 1,100 HISD paraprofessionals are enrolled in this model, which meets a rigorous standard of quality and includes appropriate assessment of course objectives and learning outcomes. Courses are accessed through the Internet or via video and are aligned to exams developed by ETS (Educational Testing Service) or individual states. HISD was the first recipient of the Broad Prize for Urban Education, a new national education award that rewards students and their school districts for dramatic improvement in student academic performance.

*KUCRL (The University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning) In the mid-1970s, passage of a federal education law required that special education services be delivered to all students who needed them from kindergarten through high school. That law changed the education landscape and planted the seed for what is now the Center for Research on Learning at the University of Kansas. Today, with the passage of No Child Left Behind, the work of the center's Strategic Intervention Model in Adolescent and Content Literacy becomes even more important. To scale the work, and provide another level of fidelity and consistency, KUCRL turned to a development and training partnership with Teachscape.

*Marygrove College Marygrove College partners with Teachscape to provide three semester hours of graduate credit for online courses taken by teachers in Michigan, New Jersey, New York, and Washington. Marygrove is fully accredited by NCATE and NCA, and is approved by the Michigan State Department of Education.

* McREL (Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning) Based in Denver, Colorado, McREL was incorporated in 1966 as Mid-continent Regional Educational Laboratory, a nonprofit organization created to help educators in the nation's heartland bridge the gap between research and practice. Now known as Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning, McREL's research and development work provides teachers and administrators with valuable information about proven, effective approaches to the challenges in education today. By building on research to solve specific problems, McREL develops widely acclaimed pre-K-16 educational products that are used in classrooms nationally and internationally to help educators maximize student learning. McREL has worked with Teachscape on the creation of the online video-based Classroom Instruction That Works series; partnered with Teachscape on the Success in Sight 2006: Learning, Leading, and the Future conference; and is looking to expand its overall development relationship with Teachscape.

*National Education Association (NEA) Teachscape is working in partnership with the National Education Association to develop high-quality professional development that effectively supports teachers working in NEA school districts.

* Northwestern University Teachscape is partnering with Northwestern University's School of Education and Social Policy as part of the Illinois Professional Learners' Partnership (IPLP) grant. IPLP is funded by the U.S. Department of Education Teacher Quality Enhancement program to engage Illinois State University, the University of Illinois, Roosevelt University, Northeastern Illinois University, and Loyola University in reorganizing their teacher development programs. As part of this grant, Northwestern University has been working with faculty at IPLP institutions to integrate the use of Teachscape online video-based case studies of exemplary teaching into their pre-service teacher education courses.

*SRA/McGraw-Hill SRA/McGraw-Hill, a division of McGraw-Hill Education, has partnered with Teachscape to provide a new online teacher training program tailored for SRA (Science Research Associates) products. The user-friendly training program will provide another level of support to educators who teach reading using SRA's Open Court Reading program at the elementary school level. The new Internet-based program will allow teachers to receive continuous training and support for McGraw-Hill programs, at home and at school. The SRA/McGraw-Hill/Teachscape online product will enable teachers to: Review video-based case studies of exemplary teaching by using SRA/McGraw-Hill curricula

Access lesson plans, assessment strategies, and samples of student work to help teachers incorporate the teaching strategies set forth in the video case studies into their daily teaching

Develop a deeper understanding of the research base for SRA/McGraw-Hill curricula through interviews with experts and content authors

Interact with teachers who have taught SRA/McGraw Hill curricula

Share ideas and have questions answered by experts online


*SRI International Teachscape's innovative and highly interactive Web site was developed in partnership with SRI International (formerly known as the Stanford Research Institute), which has one of the world's most renowned centers for the design and implementation of learning technologies. Dr. Roy Pea, now Professor of Education and the Learning Sciences at Stanford University and Executive Director of Stanford University's new Stanford Institute for Learning Sciences and Technology, led the SRI team working with Teachscape. A member of the Teachscape Board of Directors, Dr. Pea continues to serve as Chief Scientist at SRI International's Center for Technology in Learning.

*Stanford University Stanford University has partnered with Teachscape to deliver Web-based professional development for teachers who work with English language learners (ELLs). Teachscape is currently producing courses that offer specific strategies to support ELLs. These courses are authored by Dr. Kenji Hakuta, Vida Jacks Professor of Education at Stanford University. Dr. Hakuta teaches courses on language development, bilingual education, and research methods. His research is in the areas of psycholinguistics, bilingualism, language shift, and the acquisition of English in immigrant students. He chaired the National Academy of Sciences committee on developing a research agenda on the education of limited-English-proficient and bilingual students. Dr. Hakuta is the author and editor of several books, including Mirror of Language: The Debate on Bilingualism (1986) and In Other Words: The Science and Psychology of Second Language Acquisition (1994). He recently chaired a committee of the National Research Council, which issued the report Improving Schooling for Language-Minority Children: A Research Agenda, published by the National Academy Press. In 1979, Dr. Hakuta received his Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology from Harvard University.

* State of Arkansas Teachscape has collaborated with the Arkansas Department of Education to build a statewide initiative focused on student achievement and assessment, as well as a comprehensive accountability system. Included in the program are customized conferences, performance assessments aligned with the Arkansas Curriculum Frameworks, a capacity-building training model, a targeted video series, and live satellite meetings.

*University of Southern Colorado, Pueblo Teachscape Board of Directors Mark Atkinson,Chief Executive Officer Michael Finnerty, Director Michael Finnerty served as the President and Chief Operating Officer of Teachscape from December 2000 through September 2004. Prior to joining Teachscape, Mr. Finnerty served as an Officer of Edison Schools Inc. from its inception in 1992, participating in every aspect of the development of the company, from conceptual product design and business plan development to current operations in 21 states generating more than $350 million in annual revenue. Mr. Finnerty brings to Teachscape a strong background in finance and operations management. As Edison's Chief Financial Officer, he oversaw all capital finance, accounting, payroll, banking, and risk management. At Edison, he moved into the role of Executive Vice President for School Operations, where he managed the role-out of Edison programs to client school districts and Charter School Boards, to create and operate Edison Schools. Prior to his career with Edison, Mr. Finnerty served as Chief Financial and Administrative Officer at Yale University. Before that, he served as Budget Director for New York's Governor Cuomo and Chief of Staff for New York's Governor Hugh Carey. A graduate of Manhattan College, Mr. Finnerty holds a master's in Public Administration from New York University.

Robert Finzi, Co-Managing Partner, Sprout Group

Janet Hickey, Co-Managing Partner, Sprout Group

Andrew Kaplan, General Partner, Quad Partners Roy Pea, Director, Stanford Center for Innovations in Learning at Stanford University

Roy Pea, who co-founded Teachscape in 1999, is a Stanford University Professor of Education and the Learning Sciences and Director of the Stanford Center for Innovations in Learning (

James Regan, General Partner, Harbourton Enterprises

DAVID SHERMAN, OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT, AMERICAN FEDERATION OF TEACHERS. David Sherman currently serves as a consultant in the Office of the President of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) in Washington, DC, where he is coordinating the AFT's work in preparation for the reauthorization of NCLB (No Child Left Behind). Mr. Sherman has been a public school teacher in Spanish Harlem, Brownsville, and Fort Greene (Brooklyn), communities in and around New York City. For several years at Public School 307 in Brooklyn, he served as a Title I reading teacher. He also served as a teacher on special assignment at the central headquarters of the New York City Board of Education, where he became the Director of the Office of State and Federal Programs. In 1980, Mr. Sherman was hired by Albert Shanker to develop an "educational arm" for the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) in New York City, for whom he launched the UFT Teacher Center, the Dial-A-Teacher and parent outreach program, the Peer Intervention Program, and others. He was the union's liaison to the school system and over the years collaborated very closely with district and community organizations in launching the Chancellor's District (an early national model for turning around low-performing schools) and the New Vision schools (the nation's first small schools initiative), among others. Mr. Sherman became the UFT Vice President in 1991 and remained in that position through 2004. He also served as a member and co-chair of the New York State Title I Committee of Practitioners, and was appointed to the U.S. Department of Education's Negotiated Rulemaking Committee on Title I and NCLB during both the Clinton and Bush administrations.

Marshall S. Smith, Program Director, Education, William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Marshall (Mike) S. Smith has been Program Director for Education at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation in Menlo Park, California, since 2001. Prior to that, he was Acting Deputy Secretary and Under Secretary for Education in the Clinton Administration. During the Carter Administration, Mr. Smith was Chief of Staff to the Secretary for Education and Assistant Commissioner for Policy Studies in the Office of Education. While not in government, he was at different times an Assistant Professor at Harvard, and a Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Stanford University, where he was also Dean of the School of Education. A member of the National Academy of Education, Mr. Smith has authored numerous publications on topics ranging from computer content analysis to early childhood education to effective schools and standards-based reform.

Jane Swift, Partner, Arcadia Partners Jane Swift joined Arcadia Partners in May 2003. In addition to her work at Arcadia, Ms. Swift speaks professionally on women's leadership, education improvement, and work-family integration, and she recently completed a fellowship at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. Ms. Swift, who is currently a Director at Teachscape and the Brigham and Women's Hospital, served as the Governor of Massachusetts from April 2001 until January 2003. She was the first woman to do so and the first governor to give birth while in office. As the Chief Executive of the nation's 13th largest state, she was responsible for overseeing a $23 billion annual operating budget, and for setting strategic direction for 13 cabinet agencies and divisions. Ms. Swift focused on improving the state's education system and directed a review of early education programs and services, and also spearheaded improvements to the state's adult education and training programs. She successfully implemented many critical but controversial components of the Massachusetts Education Reform Act, which, as a state senator, she helped write in 1993. Combining statewide curriculum frameworks with rigorous standards and a superior assessment system, the Massachusetts law has been recognized as one of the most successful reform acts in the country. Ms. Swift received a B.A. in American Studies from Trinity College and has received six honorary doctorates, as well as numerous awards.

Joanne Weiss, Partner & COO, NewSchools Venture Fund Joanne Weiss is Partner and Chief Operating Officer at NewSchools Venture Fund, where she focuses on investments and management assistance to portfolio ventures in the Performance Accelerator Fund and oversees the organization's operations. . . .

Lots of interesting appointees listed in this memo, including the very busy fellow, David Sherman.

PRESS RELEASES Education Department Names Negotiators for Title I Rules Development

FOR RELEASE: February 27, 2002 Contact: News Media Contact: Melinda Malico (202)401-1576 Program Office Contact: Susan Wilhem (202)260-0826

U.S. Assistant Secretary of Elementary and Secondary Education Susan B. Neuman today announced the 21 members of the negotiating committee that will help develop new rules related to standards and assessments under Title I (Part A) of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.

Comprised of education practitioners including state and local education administrators, teachers, school board members and also parents, the committee will come to Washington, D.C. in mid-March to negotiate the substance of draft regulations.

Title I is designed to help disadvantaged children meet high academic standards. The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, signed into law on January 8, 2002, amended the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 and provides support for federal education programs including Title I programs operated by school districts. The U.S. Department of Education (ED) asked for advice and recommendations on Title I regulatory issues from state and local education administrators, parents, teachers and paraprofessionals, school board members and others, in a Jan. 18 Federal Register notice. The law requires that ED select participants from among those who submitted comments, a total of more than 100 individuals and organizations. The law requires that ED use a negotiated rulemaking process to develop draft rules on standards and assessments, to commence after the comment period closed (Feb. 19) and before proposed regulations are issued for public comment in the Federal Register.

To assemble a diverse negotiating group representing a wide range of interests, all geographic regions, and the views of parents and students as well as educators and education officials, ED asked more than 70 organizations to submit nominations along with their comments on regulatory issues. ED also received nominations from individuals and organizations that participated in five focus groups held to solicit advice. A list of the negotiators and the interests they are to represent follows the press release.

The group will meet five times, on March 11-13 and March 19-20, 2002, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at a location in Washington, D.C., to be announced. The meetings are open to individuals who wish to observe the process. The negotiating committee will review and revise draft regulations already developed by the Department. The final proposed rules they prepare will be available for public comment when published in the Federal Register by May 1, 2002.

ED also considered but decided against including in the negotiations issues pertaining to adequate yearly progress (AYP). AYP and other Title I issues will be addressed through the regular rulemaking process, including input already received during focus groups and four planned regional meetings. ED will announce the dates and locations for the upcoming regional meetings. Neuman has stated that the department will use nonregulatory guidance to address most issues and will issue regulations only if necessary.

Department officials developed this process and scheduled negotiated rulemaking promptly, and officials hope to issue the regulations as quickly as possible. The Federal Register notice and the draft regulation can be viewed now at:

The Federal Register notice will also be available later this week at:

Negotiators for Negotiated Rulemaking Sessions NCLB, Standards and Assessments under Title I, Part A State administrators and state boards of education: Judy Catchpole, superintendent of public instruction, Wyoming Department of Education (DOE)

Jim Horne, secretary of education, Florida DOE

Dr. Bob Harmon, assistant state superintendent for special programs, Washington Department of Public Instruction

Rodney Watson, assistant superintendent, Office of Student and School Standards, Louisiana DOE

Lou Fabrizio, director, Division of Accountability Services, North Carolina DOE

Rae Belisle, chief counsel, California State Board of Education

Local administrators and local school boards: Charlotte Harris, senior director of program development, Boston Public Schools

J. Alvin Wilbanks, superintendent, Gwinnett County (GA) Public Schools

Beverly Carroll, Alachua County, Fla. School Board

Nelson Smith, managing director for new school services, New American Schools; formerly executive director of the DC Public Charter School Board

Principals and teachers: Avis Cotton, principal, Dardanelle Middle School, Dardanelle, Ark

Enedelia Schofield, principal, W.L. Henry Elementary School, Hillsboro, Ore

Patricia Fischer, Title I teacher, Hooker Public Schools, Okla


Representing students (including at-risk students, migrant students, limited English proficient students, students with disabilities, and private school students):

Minnie Pearce, parent, Detroit.

Arturo Abarca, teacher, Helitrope Elementary School, Los Angeles Unified School District

Maria Seidner, director, bilingual education, Texas Education Agency

Dr. Alexa Pochowski, associate commissioner, Kansas DOE

Myrna Toney, director of migrant education, Wis. DOE

John R. Clark, assistant superintendent, DOE, Diocese of Allentown, Penn

Tasha Tillman, parent, Colorado Springs, Colo.

Business interests: John Stevens, director, Texas Business and Education Coalition

U.S. Department of Education: Susan B. Neuman, assistant secretary for elementary and secondary education

Joseph F. Johnson, director, Compensatory Education Programs


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