Arne Duncan

From Race Men to Debased Men, Obama at Morehouse, Arne Duncan at Morgan State

A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Back in the day, the “race men” and women, graduates of America's historically black colleges and universities imagined it was their duty to stand and lift up the interests of African Americans and their communities as a whole. If the choice of commencement speakers means anything, that's not what HBCU leaders expect of their graduates nowadays. It's not about fighting the power, it's about serving that power.

Melissa Harris-Perry Buries The Lead Story on National Wave of Public School Closings

By BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

When print or broadcast news outlets grab a compelling story, only to distract attention away from what the public needs to know, that's called “burying the lead.” That's what Melissa Harris-Perry did in her Jan. 26 segment on whether the nationwide wave of public school closings were “racist” or not.

Obama Sec'y of Education Says Katrina "the Best Thing to Happen" to Education in New Orleans

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

If obscene utterances were a crime, education secretary Arne Duncan would be jailed for life. Like all disaster capitalists, he views poor people's catastrophes as his own golden opportunities. In Haiti and New Orleans, Black lives were a small price for (someone else) to pay for the chance to create a new order “more advantageous to the rich.”
 
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Obama's Public Education Policy: Privatization, Charters, Mass Firings, Neighborhood Destabilization

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Last weekend in Chicago, US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan delivered the keynote address at Rainbow PUSH's annual conference and education roundtable.  Duncan is the premiere executor of corporate instpired policies that have closed dozens of neighborhood public schools in Chicago without substantially improving educational outcomes and at vast cost to neighborhood stability and the careers of hundreds of good teachers.  But are African American organizations standing up for their own interests, for public education?  Or are we paralyzed because the corporate policies issue from the administration of a Black President?

Obama Ordering States to Close 5,000 'Failing' Schools!... Chicago Lies Go National

by George Schmidt

The corporate narrative that public schools in minority neighborhoods are "failing" and must be replaced by unaccountable but often highly profitable "charter schools" is an inheritance from the Bush era that the Obama administration intends to continue and intensify.  Despite any proof of improved educational outcomes, and contrary to the democratic wishes of the American people the push to discredit and privatize public education appears to be a hallmark of the Obama era.

Did Barack Obama Just Appoint An Underqualified Stooge and Privatizer Secretary of Education?

Black Agenda Report's Bruce Dixon interviews Chicago educator and activist George Schmidt

The short answer seems to be "yes."  Before being appointed CEO of the Chicago Public Schools, Arne Duncan never saw the inside of a classroom as a teacher.  This is probably a good thing, since Duncan does not possess the academic qualifications to be even a substitute teacher.  Worse still, Duncan's idea of improving inner-city schools in Chicago is handing them over to corporate-run charter schools or converting them to military academies.  This, says longtime Chicago educator and activist George Schmidt, is not the change we voted for. 
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