Readers of Friday’s edition of USA Today found out about an issue that Plunderbund readers have known about for some time. It’s nice to know that more folks are now in the loop.
The story, “Turkish Faith Movement Secretly Funded 200 Trips for Lawmakers and Staff,” details the efforts of the Gulen Movement to provide Members of Congress and their staffs with free trips to Turkey that are of questionable legality, based upon U.S. House Ethics Committee rules. The term Gulen Movement describes a number of organizations that follow the teachings of Fethullah Gulen, an Islamic cleric and […]Full Story... →
Will the defendant please rise?
For those who follow the frequent high crimes and misdemeanors generated by the charter school industry, we’ve heard those five words spoken much too often. In fact, there have been so many violations of the public trust by charter school operatives nationally that at least one aptly named website, Charter School Scandals, has been established to chronicle the misdeeds of school privatizers.
But apart from the voluminous information available about charter cardinal sins, a look at some closing remarks made by a defense attorney in a Franklin County Common Pleas courtroom last week […]Full Story... →
It may be too late for federal education regulators to recall the grant from last week of $71 million that went to Ohio for charter schools. The issue going forward for two of Ohio’s congressional delegation, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown and Congressman Tim Ryan, is all about increasing accountability, transparency and community involvement in charter schools while helping to ensure a high-quality education for every child.
Sen. Brown was joined in a call to reporters on Wednesday by Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH-13) to discuss their bicameral legislation that would bring new standards of performance for nearly 400 taxpayer-funded charter […]Full Story... →
Words, words, words. So many to use, even some to weaponize.
Our language gives us countless words to choose from in everyday communication. In navigating the universe of words and how we use them, we know there are some words that provoke, some that confuse, and certainly others to avoid.
According to at least one source on the subject, there are at least a million words in the English language. But whether we accept that figure – or a much lower number as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary, we also know there are many words that shouldn’t be […]Full Story... →
Documents obtained by Plunderbund show that a company owned by one of Ohio’s largest charter school operators is failing to deliver on a major contract with the state. The documents also indicate that former employees of the company, now supervising the project for the state, likely retaliated against public employees who questioned the company’s failures. The company’s owner, William Lager, is one of the biggest Republican political donors in Ohio.
According to an investigation report from the Ohio State University’s Office of University Compliance and Integrity (OUCI), “Employees with the Ohio Technology Consortium (OH-TECH)… reported that a project to implement a statewide K-12 learning management system […]Full Story... →
The Akron Beacon Journal reported last week that another failed charter school, the Next Frontier Academy, closed leaving at least 60 students displaced. It’s the same sad and sorry story we continue to hear about Ohio’s disastrous charter school experiment: misspent state money. unqualified staff and a severe lack of oversight by the state.
Here are the highlights from the ABJ story:
“Like 200 other charters, the school has closed, adding to the $1 billion in taxpayer funding given to failed charter schools. More charter schools closed last year than at any point in the industry’s 17-year history in Ohio” “Ohio Department of Education […]Full Story... →
Should some weird, mysterious set of cosmic circumstances arise and John Kasich gets elected president, he would have every reason to nominate one of the justices of the Ohio Supreme Court to the U.S. Supreme Court in light of how they saved his hide from further beatings.
We know that Justice Judy French, who Gov. Kasich first appointed to the state supreme court and who told voters just last year that electing her would backstop all the other GOP candidates voters might elect, would have some big chits to call in from Ohio’s White House wannabee based on her support […]Full Story... →
It’s pure speculation on how local, state or national news media would treat a Democratic governor whose administration was as complicit in altering, falsifying or obfuscating for-profit charter school data as has been the administration of Gov. John Kasich.
Gov. Kasich’s fast footwork on the issue is needed to keep it from exploding beyond Ohio’s borders. Mr. Kasich is currently concentrating his hopes to be the Republican nominee for president next year by relocating to New Hampshire, a small libertarian-leaning state where he’ll fade fast if he doesn’t place at least third come next February.
To boost his sad national […]Full Story... →
David Hansen resigned from his job as John Kasich’s hand-picked Charter School Czar back in July after it was discovered that he illegally withheld damaging rating data from charter sponsor evaluations. On Thursday, seven weeks later, the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) finally released some public records related to that charter school data scandal.
An initial review of the records by Plunderbund shows that Hansen was actively communicating with representatives of charter school sponsors who would eventually benefit from his data manipulation. It also shows that ODE staff members intentionally avoided sharing the manipulated calculations via printouts or email, potentially shielding those calculations from public records […]Full Story... →
When the FCI Academy abruptly closed this week, nearly 300 students and their parents were left in a lurch. Many showed up for the first day of school on Wednesday to find a notice simply posted on the front door, with no one answering the door or the many repeated phone calls of parents looking for answers. Some have even sought answers and assistance from the school’s sponsor, Education Service Center of Lake Erie West, located two hours north in Toledo, to no avail.
A parent we spoke with today expressed her frustration as she is now […]Full Story... →
John Kasich is a master of making jokes at other people’s expense. His reputation of delivering snide, snarky comments, after nearly 40 years as a performance politician, is legend.
One joke making news Monday is the expectation that Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley will endorse Gov. Kasich for president. This is funny only if backward Alabama, where Republicans dominate state politics even more than in Ohio, is deemed a state whose policies should be bellwethers for the nation. The pending endorsement is framed as an example of Gov. Kasich’s strength stretching “beyond his home state and New Hampshire, and beyond […]Full Story... →