Vicki Boyer's blog

Is K12 Inc Good Enough for NC?

Is a virtual education the same thing as an in-person education? Can profits and education co-exist without short-changing children? And how much will this cost us? North Carolina is going to find out.

In last summer’s General Assembly session, Sen. Jerry Tillman (R, Moore, Randolph) pushed through a bill requiring the establishment in North Carolina of 2 virtual charter schools, knowing that one likely applicant was K12 Inc. And now that the law is in place, there have been only 2 applicants, one of which is K12 Inc.

At the same point in time that other states are finding schools run by K12 Inc to be inadequate to the job of educating students, North Carolina is opening the door to bring those problems here.

Education Tweet-storm!

Arne Duncan opened a can of worms this morning, with a single tweet:

Arne Duncan
Verified account
‏@arneduncan
What if every district committed both to identifying what made their 5 best schools successful & providing those opps to all their students?

Responses include:

Amy Cody Clancy ‏@acodyclancy @KJeskey @BadassTeachersA @arneduncan What if the top 5 schools have less poverty, more parental supp and the money with which to succeed?

Evolution, not revolution, for taxes

Evolution, not revolution, for taxes.

Republican governors in other states seem to be learning from the experiences of Kansas Governor, Sam Brownback. Were the tax ‘reforms’ instituted by Republicans in Kansas too drastic? Many now think so. The $279 million revenue gap, and a credit rating downgrade, experienced by Kansas is changing minds all across the GOP universe. Most still believe in Laffer’s supply-side, trickle down theories, but are beginning to say that smaller cuts over a longer period of time might actually be better for their state.

Freedom of Religion

Today is the anniversary of the passage of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, passed January 6th, in 1786. The Statute was the precursor of the Establishment Clause and Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Remember this the next time you hear the founding of America was based on Christianity. It was not.

Voter registration challenge in Wake

I learn something new every day.

Today, the Wake Board of Elections (BOE) today discussed Greg Flynn’s challenge to Jay DeLancy’s voter registration. Mr. DeLancy leads the Voter Integrity Project, a group dedicated to the proposition that all voter registrations are suspect and probably fraudulent unless it can be determined that the voter voted Republican. Mr. Flynn had reason to send a Registered Mail-Return Receipt Requested letter to Mr. DeLancy and, Lo! and Behold! it was returned. Did Registered Voter Jay DeLancy actually live at that address?? A challenge ensued, with the returned letter as evidence.

Academic standards for NC schools

Today, I sat in on a meeting of the Academic Standards Review Commission, the group that has until December, 2015, to come up with education standards so incredibly high they will put the Common Core to shame. The meeting was held in the Administration building in Raleigh and many of the Commission members had driven in from the far ends of the state. Finding information about the Commission meeting was somewhat difficult. I only found out about this meeting by sending an email to a reporter who wrote an article about their September meeting.

Are 'Women's Issues' Necessary?

What is it that sets women and their 'issues' aside?

Civitas writer, Becki Gray thinks that “Women’s ‘Advocates’ are holding women back.” She has written about this in NC SPIN, October 4, 2014. Ms. Gray seems to think misogyny is over just as the Supreme Court thinks racism is over. Both are mistaken.

Making women’s rights an article of law is not ‘nanny care,’ it is a fitting and proper act of government, whose duty it is to protect all citizens. Women’s rights are just like everyone else’s rights, but not every person wants to admit that, let alone support it and live by it. If even she admits she had to ‘work hard to be seen and treated as an equal,’ than something is wrong with our society’s outlook on women. It wasn’t ‘women’s advocates’ she needed to persuade of her equality.

Best Educated Cities in America

Forbes is reporting that WalletHub has come out with its list of the 10 Most and Least Educated Cities in America, and NC's RTP has something to crow about:

Raleigh, North Carolina, comes in second, with neighbor Durham, North Carolina right behind it in third place. Provo, Utah, and Manchester, New Hampshire, round out the top five.

How long we will remain on the good end of this list could be problematic with all the cuts being made to our education systems and pressure to turn our university system into something less than world class. WalletHub reports:

Deception at a public forum

Nothing should surprise me anymore, but I confess, this did. It seems so many anti-frackers turned up at the NC Mining and Energy Commission public hearings that someone decided Steps Had To Be Taken.

The Asheville Citizen-Times is reporting:

Homeless men unfamiliar with fracking were bused from Winston-Salem to a state hearing Friday on the controversial technique for extracting natural gas, an effort to bolster a pro-fracking turnout, according to an environmental group and a published report.

Rural Wifi investment

For some time I have pointed out that the best way to ensure economic development in our rural counties is to provide broadband wifi services to those areas. Free access would be ideal, but fees for service will most likely be necessary.

A letter to the editor in Saturday's News and Observer demonstrates a need for some kind of program in North Carolina that would bring wifi service to our countryside. The letter writer feels she is "sealed off from the digital age, because broadband service has not been extended to our homes."

We live in an area of Chatham County where there is no DSL or cable and weak cell signals. The best service one can get is satellite or a trip of 10-15 miles to a library when it is open…

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