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Information is power. Our mission at Portside is to seek out and to provide information that empowers you -- that empowers the left. Every day we search hundreds of sources to connect you with the most interesting, striking and useful material. Just once a year we appeal to you to contribute to make it possible to continue this work. Please help.

 

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How the Ruling Class Remade New Orleans

Thomas Jessen Adams Jacobin
The language of social justice has been used to sell intensified neoliberalism in post-Katrina New Orleans. On the tenth anniversary of the failure of the federally maintained levees, the keynote speaker at the annual Rising Tide Conference on the Future of New Orleans was DeRay Mckesson, a standard-bearer for Teach For America and the New Teacher Project — education “reform” organizations that played a crucial role in the destruction of the black middle class.

The True Cost of Teach For America's Impact on Urban Schools

Rachel M. Cohen The Amercan Prospect
Why are school districts paying millions in "finder's fees" to an organization that places people without education degrees to teach in urban schools—even where applications from veteran teachers abound?

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Students to Teach for America CEOs: You Are ‘Complicit’ in Attacks on Public Education

Ari Paul In These Times
USAS is the country’s largest student labor organization. The group’s main gripes with TFA and its Peace Corps-like model for American education, bringing college students—most from elite universities—to teach for a short period of time in some of the country’s poorest school districts, are that it is inadequately training teachers and promoting a for-profit, anti-union education reform agenda.

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Building Not Rebulding Public Education

Lois Weiner Jacobin
Adapted from a longer piece in the current issue of New Politics (see link below). Fighting corporate education reform is less about restoring the old system to its former glory than building a just one for the first time.

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7000 New Orleans Teachers Laid Off After Katrina Win Court Ruling

Danielle Dreilinger The Times Picayune
An appeals court has decided that the School Board wrongly terminated more than 7,000 teachers after Hurricane Katrina. Those teachers were not given due process, and many teachers had the right to be rehired as jobs opened up in the first years after the storm, the court said in a unanimous opinion.

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Charters Get Kids Cubicle Ready

Samantha Winslow Labor Notes
From Silicon Valley, the Rocketship chain of charter schools is hoping to expand across the country. It’s backed by some of the biggest names in the tech world and claims high test scores. But what are these schools preparing kids for? And what are the real costs of Rocketship's low-cost model?

Teach for America’s Mission in Chicago

Kenzo Shibata Jacobin Magazine
TFA is in crisis mode. With the organization losing true believers within its rank-and-file, it doubled down on recruitment and doubled down on marketing. It’s just a shame that none of this has anything to do with improving teaching and learning.

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Teach For America's Civil War

James Cersonsky The American Prospect
The summit, billed as “Organizing Resistance Against Teach for America and its Role in Privatization,” is being organized by a committee of scholars, parents, activists, and current corps members. Its mission is to challenge the organization’s centrality in the corporate-backed, market-driven, testing-oriented movement in urban education.
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