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The Week Ahead: Charters, Turnarounds, and Duncan

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From guest blogger Dakarai I. Aarons

The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools is bringing its 9th annual conference to town next week, and your intrepid Education Week reporters Dakarai I. Aarons and Lesli A. Maxwell will be on the scene to bring you the latest news from the conference, so be sure to follow along on this blog and @educationweek on Twitter for updates from the conference.

Education Secretary Arne Duncan will kick off the conference on Monday with a speech about the need to turn around low-performing schools, a subject he recently discussed in an EdWeek commentary. It's the third of four speeches he is doing on the assurances" that states must make to get a significant share of education stimulus dollars. Duncan has pushed states to lift caps on charter schools, or find themselves in a weakened competitive spot for the funds.

The conference comes on the release of a study this week that found mixed results for the nation's charter schools.

Among the other famous-in-education faces at the conference are D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee, NYC schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein and Steve Barr, founder of the Los Angeles-based Green Dot Charter Schools. He recently appeared before a House committee to tout the successes of his schools, which are being considered a possible model for turning around low performing schools.

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In Miami, we just spent $110 million on "turning around" low performing schools.
They were targeted as "zone schools" as was the model that ex-super Rudy Crew won significant national acclaim for his inititiative. IT DID NOT WORK and he left town in disgrace with many locals still considering ways to charge him for criminal mismanagement of taxpayer monies.

Duncan's "turnaround" program concept is the same as Crew's. Take effective teachers from their home schools - whether they want to leave or not - and throw them into these turnarounds. Yeah they increased their pay by 20%- a huge increase in miami. Educators have never been about more money,just a comfortable living that adjusts with inflation. We are just looking for the right community and students that will appreciate our dedication and hard work.

When was the last time politicians asked for educator input?

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