Category Archives: Reblogged Post

Blog posts from other WordPress sites around the Internet of interest to Mark, or possibly his readers.

Department of Education Will Continue to Spend More Than $1 Million Per Month to Protect DeVos

(Other than to wonder why a Secretary of Education needs this level of protection, there’s really nothing to add to this post from Diane Ravitch’s Blog)

Diane Ravitch's blog

Politico reports that the Department of Education will renew the agreement with the U.S. Marshalls Service to protect Secretary Betsy DeVos, which cost nearly $8 million for six months. This occurs at a time when DeVos has enthusiastically endorsed budget cuts of billions to the Department’s programs. One program that she agreed to cut is a $10 million subsidy to the Special Olympics. Should the Dartment pay for her security detail or for opportunities for students with disabilities to demonstrate their athletic accomplishments? She is a billionaire. Why doesn’t she pay for her own security or ask her brother Erik Prince to send over a detail of his mercenaries?

“DEVOS, U.S. MARSHALS SERVICE TO RENEW SECURITY AGREEMENT: The U.S. Marshals Service and the Education Department plan to renew an agreement to continue providing protective services for Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, a spokesman for the Marshals Service tells Pro Education’s Caitlin…

View original post 144 more words

Lubienskis: Why is Betsy DeVos Pushing Vouchers When Research Shows They Don’t Work?

(Betsy DeVos is an ideologue whose views on education are seriously at odds with reality. Here’s another excellent post from Diane Ravitch’s Blog exposing Secretary DeVos’s penchant for pursuing failed policies.)

Diane Ravitch's blog

Christopher Lubienski and Sarah Lubienski are among the nation’s leading researchers on the subject of school choice. Their book, “The Public School Advantage: Why Public Schools Outperform Private Schools” is must reading. Christopher Lubienski is professor of education policy at Indiana University. Sarah Theule Lubienski is a professor of mathematics education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

They can’t understand why Betsy DeVos and the Trump administration are pushing vouchers when evidence shows that they actually harm children.

This article appears in Education Week.

“For years, voucher advocates have pointed to a series of more than a dozen reports—usually funded or conducted by voucher proponents—that used randomized approaches, similar to those used in medical research, to isolate the effects of vouchers on treatment groups in citywide programs.

“While other researchers have questioned those reports over the last decade and a half, voucher advocates have claimed that these “

View original post 850 more words

DeVos Invites Anti-LGBT Groups to Join Father’s Day Event in D.C.

(I’m not sure what more I could do to make this grim news grimmer; Betsy DeVos is a right-wing zealot who understands very little about education, and even less about diversity and strength.)

Diane Ravitch's blog

The DeVos family foundations have long supported (even helped to found) anti-gay groups. Betsy DeVos’s mother was one of the major contributors to Prop 8 in California, which declared gay marriage illegal. Her family members are on the boards of Focus on the Family and Family Research Council. At her confirmation hearings, DeVos was asked about her connections to these anti-LGBT organizations, and of course she feigned innocence. When asked about her being listed as a member of the board of her mother’s foundation, which is rabidly anti-gay, she claimed she was not on the board. When asked why her name was listed as an officer of that board, she said it was a clerical error. The same clerical error occurred over fourteen years, even though the IRS returns were audited.

The National Parent Teacher Association withdrew from the conference.

A personal note: my younger son is gay. He and…

View original post 343 more words

Tulipmania (again!)

(Here’s a nifty post, with a lot of nice photographs, from a writer named Ellis Nelson, who blogs on her eponymous site. In this passage she provides a nice summary of the tulip craze in Holland in the 17th century. I wish her luck in getting her manuscript, a young adult novel set in the period, published soon.)

ellisnelson

Semper_Augustus_Tulip

This is the Semper Augustus, a remarkable tulip of the 17th Century which fueled the world’s first love for the exotic and magical bulb. My recent visit to the Keukenhof gardens indicates flower lovers still lust after its charm. So do I.

dav

Several years ago, I got caught up in the story of the tulip. Way back in 1554, an ambassador to Turkey sent some bulbs and seeds back home. These found their way into Vienna and then into the Low Counties. It took the careful work of Carolus Clusius (a botanist at the University of Leiden) to cultivate and catalog those bulbs that could tolerate the local conditions and soon tulips were popular. Newly independent Holland had a unique flower and it soon became a luxury item. More and more fantastic species were developed. The most sought after tulips actually suffered from a virus that broke the colors…

View original post 143 more words