Professor discusses education

first_imgThe United States needs to create stronger public and private education systems, and can do so through decreasing the reliance on standardized testing, according to Diane Ravitch, professor of education at New York University. Her lecture, “Is There a Crisis in Public Education?” was the latest event in Notre Dame’s year-long Forum, “Reimagining School: to Nurture the Soul of a Nation.” Ravitch spoke Tuesday night in the Eck Hall of Law, saying our nation must foster a system capable of caring for the needs of all its students. “Our schools are a reflection of our society,” she said. “They are indeed beset by problems and they need to improve – but they are not declining, and they are not failing.” Ravitch employed a historical perspective, exploring the causes of current challenges to the system’s efficacy and the basis of measures enacted to combat them. She said the No Child Left Behind Act, passed in 2001, is one such key factor. “In the decade before the passage of No Child Left Behind, most states had already adopted testing and accountability systems,” she said. “However, federal and state policy makers just can’t seem to get enough data, they want more.” The focus on collecting data prompts policymakers to look at standardized testing to ascertain the worth of a school, Ravitch said. However, she said tests should have a different purpose. “Tests should be used to diagnose learning problems, except now they are used inappropriately, to judge the worth of teachers, schools and students,” Ravitch said. Because these tests are being used for more than they were designed to evaluate, Ravitch said policymakers and analysts are drawing incorrect conclusions ignoring the real problem. “Poverty is the elephant in the room. Reduce poverty and test scores would be increased,” she said. “The odds are on the side of children who live in affluent and secure communities.” Ravitch said the emphasis on testing impedes the distribution of quality education. “We don’t know how to test the things that matter most,” she said. “The more our nation relies on high-stakes testing, the more our educational sense of priorities are warped.” Ravitch said the use of students’ test scores to indicate the relative worth of each teacher is a case of scapegoating. She said blame is placed on teachers, while ignoring other factors. “Tests are indication of many different qualities [at play in the life of the student], and the teacher has little or no control over many of these factors,” Ravitch said. “Tests are also subject to statistical error, random error and human error. They should be used for information, but not to reward or punish.” Ravitch said the nation’s first priority should be to halt these policies. “We have to stop doing wrong things before we start doing right things,” she said. “The role of the government should be to level the playing field and to make sure that adequate resources are provided for children in poverty. The federal government should not be telling schools how to reform.” Ravitch said the process would be a long one, requiring people to think creatively about possible ways to enhance American education. “It will not happen overnight, good things never do,” she said. “We will need the work of people who have a vision of how to change the lives of children and families … there is a lot of work ahead of us all.” Following Ravitch’s talk, former teacher Susan van Fleet, recently retired from Penn High School in Mishawaka, Ind., said she felt Ravitch’s opinions analyzed the issue of testing accurately. “Speaking as someone who’s been in the system, she has her fingers right on the problem,” Van Fleet said. “Our leaders need to stop not listening … to the people who really understand the facts, not just basing decisions on politics.” Kate Kennedy, administrative assistant at the Center for Research of Educational Opportunity, said she appreciated Ravitch’s analysis of the current state of education in America. “Ravitch put the brakes on, and took a look and what is actually happening. The bottom line is the same between what each Catholic school and public school wants to do: support schools, support teachers, but what is questionable is whether the current methods are serving that goal,” Kennedy said. “Ravitch brought a more historical view, saying this is how school started, this is what we have tried, now let’s look at what worked.” Contact Nicole Michels at nmichels@nd.edulast_img read more

Two face drug charges following Laurel traffic stop

first_imgJerry AbramsTony PursifullLaurel, In.— Two Laurel residents are facing drug charges after a routine traffic stop by Franklin County Sheriff’s deputies.A report from the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department says the stop was initiated for an equipment violation while on patrol Saturday at 6 p.m. in Laurel. During the stop police found about one ounce of methamphetamine.Jerry Abrams, 62, and Tony Pursifull, 44, both of Laurel, were arrested for dealing in methamphetamine and possession of paraphernalia.last_img

Ninvalle discusses further assistance to Caribbean from AIBA

first_imgPRESIDENT of the Guyana Boxing Association, Steve Ninvalle, is in Eastern Siberia, Russia to witness the finals of the AIBA Women’s World Championship.Ninvalle arrived in Ulan-Ude near the Mongolian border early last week and used the occasion to discuss AIBA’s further assistance to the Caribbean, with the governing body’s top brass there for the tournament.The Championship will conclude today.last_img

The Evolution of Infidelity

first_imgThe BBC News placed a sultry photo of a likely-undressed man and woman about to kiss alongside the headline of a story, “Genes may be to blame for infidelity.”  They report on the speculation by Tim Spector (Twin Research Unit, St. Thomas Hospital) that “if one of a pair of twins had a history of infidelity, the chances her sister would also stray were about 55%” instead of the estimated 23% of women who supposedly are not faithful (how this statistic was ascertained was not disclosed).He stressed that genes alone did not determine whether somebody was likely to be unfaithful – much was down to social factors.    But he said it made good sense in evolutionary terms to get a good mix of genes – and for women to chose a better option if one came along.    However, he stopped short of concluding that there is an infidelity gene.     He said: “There is unlikely to be a single gene for anything like this.  But there are likely to be genes that participate in it, a number of genes working together, it might be things like risk taking or those associated with personality.”A social psychologist is quoted denying that the behavior is genetically based, but more likely based on imitation of the parent.Notice the moral schizophrenia in this story even if you accept the premise.  Alongside the strictly naturalistic explanation for immorality are the words infidelity and unfaithfulness, and the word good, all words loaded with moral connotations.  But if unfaithfulness evolved as a sexual selection strategy, if it “makes good sense in evolutionary terms,” who is to call it unfaithful?  It is certainly faithful to the only one who matters in Darwin’s universe: me, myself, I.  So yes, selfishness makes perfect sense in a selfish universe, because selfishness is the highest good.    Do you see, dear reader, how destructive evolutionary thinking can be in the most intimate matters of the heart?  This article essentially encourages the cheater, saying, “You can’t help it; you are doing just what your genes lead you to do.  In fact, what you are doing makes perfect evolutionary sense and is actually a good thing for #1.” Notice that fellow evolutionists rarely condemn this kind of nonsense.  If they disagree with it, they usually just replace one evolutionary just-so story with another.  None dare call it immoral, even when it involves crime (see 07/18/2003 headline about the evolution of rape).  Michael Ruse once rationalized the genocide in Nazi Germany in evolutionary terms, refusing to call it evil, but instead claiming that such societies are usually “unstable.”  That means that, conceivably, if it were stable, it would make perfect evolutionary sense.  Democracy, on the contrary, is not stable either; “eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.”  So is the Bill of Rights doomed to failure, because it counters the evolutionary pressure of natural selection?  Is that why so many Darwinians in elite universities are Marxists?  Let’s conduct a survey of how many evolutionists cheat on their spouses, to make sure they are not just promoting Darwinism as a pseudoscientific rationalization for their behavior.    So, Mr. Spector, you’ve told us a nice little story about how cheating makes perfect evolutionary sense.  Now tell us about the evolution of broken homes, devastated children and heartbroken spouses.  This evolutionary tale is not just dumb, it’s evil.  Maybe that’s why the British pronounce it evil-you-tion.(Visited 6 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Zuma to take up issues with Mugabe

first_img5 August 2009South African President Jacob Zuma indicated on Monday that he would be contacting Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe to discuss tensions in that country’s unity government, following a meeting with Zimbabwe Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.“Given this situation, I will be contacting President Robert Mugabe on the matters raised by Tsvangirai,” Zuma told reporters in Johannesburg after meeting with Tsvangirai.Zuma said he would also contact other Southern African Development Community (SADC) leaders to “brief them on how we can continue working together to make quick progress in Zimbabwe.”Tsvangirai told reporters that it was “five months since the formation of the unity government, so I was updating Zuma, as the chairperson of the Southern African Development Community, on the progress and areas of slow progress.”Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change claims there has been a recent crackdown on its members.While the issues that Zuma and Tsvangirai discussed were not mentioned, Tsvangirai said he was pleased by Zuma’s willingness to intervene.Zuma said he was confident that agreement on outstanding issues would be reached, adding that former president Thabo Mbeki, who mediated the agreement of the unity government, had also been briefed on the situation via a letter.Zuma said the problems in neighbouring Zimbabwe were “weighty”, but could be resolved. Tsvangirai had “indicated few deadlocks that we still need to look at, but I am confident that they will be sorted out.”The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has claimed a recent crackdown on its members, following the arrests of several lawmakers which it says are aimed at robbing the party of its slim parliamentary majority.Key appointments, including the appointment of Zimbabwe’s central bank chief and attorney-general, have been referred to the SADC for regional mediation.Tsvangirai is frustrated by the lack of progress in resolving the thorniest issues in the agreement, after Mugabe apparently refused to budge on his re-appointment of Gideon Gono as Reserve Bank governor and Johannes Tomana as attorney-general.The MDC also says scores of party legislators, students, activists, lawyers and ordinary party members have been arrested or are missing, while there reports that farm invasions are continuing in the country.The MDC holds a slim majority in Zimbabwe’s parliament, but some MDC members of parliament are awaiting trial or have been convicted of political crimes and have been suspended from parliament. The MDC says the claims against its members are politically motivated.The MDC joined Mugabe’s ruling Zanu-PF party in a fragile coalition government set up in February, nearly a year after disputed elections, in an agreement brokered by the SADC.The unity government was created to end the violence that erupted after disputed election results led to a political deadlock, crippling the country’s economy and prompting millions of Zimbabweans to flee into South Africa.Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

South Africa continues to create jobs

first_img13 March 2012 After rising by 5.0 percent in January, employment in South Africa registered an annualised growth rate of 1.5 percent in February, according to the latest Adcorp Employment Index, released on Monday. The index is regarded as the most representative barometer of employment trends in South Africa. During the month, the economy created 24 000 jobs, slowing from the 80 000 jobs created in January. Most of the jobs were created in the informal sector, about 22 000 or 91.7 percent of the total, Adcorp reported. In the formal sector, employment growth was strongest in the manufacturing sector, with 5.3 percent, the construction sector, with 4.7 percent, and the wholesale and retail trade, with 3.5 percent. This was the first time in more than 12 months that job growth in the production-oriented sectors exceeded job growth in the consumption-oriented sectors. Mining employment, however, continued to shrink, with a loss of 3 000 jobs in February. High-skilled employment – that of senior managers and professions – reported the strongest growth in terms of occupational categories.It grew 5.3 percent, whereas low-skilled employment, trades and elementary workers, reported the steepest decline. It registered -1.3 percent. About 68 percent of all South African workers were employed by small businesses employing fewer than 50 people. Against this backdrop, 440 000 small business closures were observed over the past five years, according to Adcorp, while the number of new business start-ups had fallen to an all-time low. Adcorp noted that the small business sector was the most important originator of jobs in SA.Sapalast_img read more

South Africa, India ties ‘bearing fruit’

first_img20 March 2012 South Africa’s relations with India continue to yield positive results, SA High Commissioner to India Harris Majeke told a business seminar hosted by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in Chennai, India on Monday. The five-day seminar, part of and international Investment and Trade Initiative (ITI) led by Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Elizabeth Thabethe, kicked off on Monday and ends in Mumbai on Friday. “This gathering serves to reinforce the longstanding friendship that both India and South Africa have shared since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1993,” Majeke said. Billions in trade, investment “We have been able to build quite a diversified economic and political framework, with bilateral trade between our countries growing from US$4-billion to $11.1-billion over the 2005 to 2011 period.” Majeke said India ranked among the top 10 investing countries in South Africa, with investments estimated at over $6-billion to date. South Africa’s investments into India have also been growing steadily, with investment now amounting to $250-million. Majeke said initiatives that were being undertaken to step trade and investment up further. These included the establishment of an India-South Africa joint ministerial commission, the India-South Africa CEOs Forum, and the signing of trade and various other agreements. South Africa and India also cooperate on defence matters and small enterprise development.SA, Indian business delegations “We are also in the process of negotiating a preferential trade agreement between our countries,” Majeke said. “This will further accelerate trade flows, and extend the range of traded goods, which will deepen the mutually beneficial trade and investment ties between our developing countries of the South,” he said. The seminar is being attended by over 100 South African and Indian businessmen and women. Sibongile Sambo, managing director of SRS Aviation and part of the 45-member South African delegation attending the seminar, said she had already managed to negotiate a potential deal with an Indian aviation company this week. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

Rain or Shine banks on Cruz, deals Star its 1st loss

first_imgBrace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Read Next Cruz came off the bench and fired 18 points, three rebounds, and three assists in the win.Rain or Shine, though, had to gut it out in the end as the pesky Star refused to die late, trimming what was once an 11-point lead, 88-77, in the final 1:29, to as low as five, 92-87, after an Allein Maliksi floater with nine seconds left.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutCruz had a chance to seal the game shut in the end, but uncharacteristically muffed both freebies and even fouled Malcolm Hill with four ticks remaining.Luckily for the Elasto Painters, Hill could only muster a split as Gabe Norwood secured the rebound to end the game. View comments J’Nathan Bullock also poured 18 markers, 11 boards, five assists, and two blocks as his side remained unbeaten since his entry for first-choice import JD Weatherspoon.Fresh from their stint with Gilas Pilipinas in the 2017 Fiba Asia Cup, Norwood contributed 15 points, 11 rebounds, and four dimes, while Raymond Almazan had 13 markers and 14 boards in the victory.“Finally, we were able to beat Star this season. I thought we’ll never win against them (this season),” said coach Caloy Garcia, as his side rose to a 4-2 record. “It’s all defense. It started in the first half, the energy was there, the effort was there. I just told the players that when they’re inside the game, what I look is more efficiency than you being tired. Everybody who played today came out strong.”From a 28-all deadlock, Rain or Shine unfurled a 24-4 tear abridging the second and third quarters to erect a 52-32 edge at the 7:31 mark of the third period.However, the trio of Hill, Paul Lee, and Ian Sangalang brought the team back to as close as three, 75-72 with 5:23 remaining before Cruz went on a tear of his own for the Elasto Painters late.ADVERTISEMENT “We’ve been playing a lot better,” noted Garcia. “I told the players since we made the trades that we became the number one defensive team based on the stats. I think it’s about defense, the effort is there. When we play good defense, our offense comes. But we still have lapses during the game.Hill topped Star with 26 points, 20 rebounds, and three assists, while Lee got 17 markers, seven boards, and three dimes.The Hotshots saw their four-game winning run halted as they drop to a 4-1 slate.The Scores:RAIN OR SHINE 92 – Bullock 18, Cruz 18, Norwood 15, Almazan 13, Ahanmisi 10, Matias 5, Borboran 5, Daquioag 5, Tiu 3, Ponferrada 0, Yap 0, Maiquez 0, Trollano 0.STAR 88 – Hill 26, Lee 17, Sangalang 11, Maliksi 10, Jalalon 8, Barroca 4, Ramos 4, Simon 3, Melton 3, Reavis 2, Brondial 0, Pingris 0, Dela Rosa 0.Quarters: 15-15, 41-30, 68-56, 92-88. Martinez bags silver, Perticheto wins bronze in figure skating Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa MOST READ SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games LATEST STORIES Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Jericho Cruz. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netJericho Cruz took charge late for Rain or Shine as it dealt Star its first loss with a 92-88 squeaker in the 2017 PBA Governors’ Cup Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.The energetic guard fired 10 of the Elasto Painters’ final 17 points as they doused the Hotshots’ rally in the fourth quarter and stretch their winning run to three.ADVERTISEMENT UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspensionlast_img read more

Tabora hopes to help bring back interest in bowling with PSA recognition

first_imgRead Next READ: Krizziah Tabora wins 53rd Bowling World CupThough Tabora can be seen as this era’s torchbearer, she knows that one victory won’t be enough to cement her legacy. So she remains hungry to continue representing the Philippines in every tournament she joins in, including the Asian Games in August in Indonesia.“We’re preparing for that,” said Tabora, who is aiming to bounce back from her forgettable run in the 2017 World Bowling Championships last December.“There’s always going to be pressure, especially after I won in the Bowling World Cup. I admit that I was pressured in the World Championships and that’s why I wasn’t able to perform. But we’re preparing for the next challenges,” she said. “In bowling, you can’t say who will perform well in any tournament. It’s really unpredictable, so you have to be prepared.”ADVERTISEMENT Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View comments Ancajas: Next Manny Pacquiao hasn’t been born yet John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Families in US enclave in north Mexico hold sad Thanksgiving Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university PLAY LIST 01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City AFP official booed out of forum LOOK: Iya Villania meets ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’ cast in Mexicocenter_img Pussycat Dolls set for reunion tour after 10-year hiatus MOST READ Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Google honors food scientist, banana ketchup inventor and war hero Maria Orosa LATEST STORIES Krizziah Lyn Tabora is nothing but grateful for all the accolades coming her way after winning the women’s championship in the 2017 QubicaAMF Bowling World Cup.“Until now, I can’t believe that I’m one of the awardees. I thought after the World Cup, that’s already the best award I could get, but I’m surprised that I got a prestigious award like this,” she said after being recognized as one of the three Athletes of the Year in the SMC-Philippine Sportswriters Association Awards night on Tuesday.ADVERTISEMENT READ: A night of sports heroesKrizziah Tabora. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netTabora was only the sixth bowler to be bestowed the honor following legends like Paeng Nepomuceno, Bong Coo, Ariane Cerdena, CJ Suarez, and Biboy Rivera, and the first since Rivera in 2010.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutThe 26-year-old believes that this distinction could help her bring the public’s interest back to the sport of bowling.“This honor is big not just for me, but for Philippine bowling as well. We’re putting bowling back to the people’s consciousness because of my win and I hope we could continue growing because of all of these,” she said. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. last_img read more

Reader question: What’s a good framework for a fundraising plan?

first_imgToday, I’m answering another reader question. Beth asks:Can you provide a basic (simple) framework to create a fundraising plan (or resources to do so) – for a brand new nonprofit and their completely new to fundraising staff? Thanks!Here’s what Network for Good recommends in our Fundraising Campaign in a Box. (You can get the whole free kit here. It has worksheets, templates, etc.)1. Figure out what you’re trying to accomplish.Any campaign worth its salt is about getting results. What results are you and your organization looking to achieve? When you’re planning your outreach, remember these three tips:There is no such thing as “the general public”…Instead, you need to segment your communications to be effective and targeted.Some audiences are more important than others. Think about your goals and who holds the key to your success. Lack of participation from primary groups can cause your campaign to falter or fail.2. Determine how you’re going to accomplish your goals (tell a great story).So – you have groups of people and actions you want them to take. How are you going to tell your story in a compelling manner? What themes, messages and ideas are you going to take from your arsenal of content to encourage action? Need inspiration? Read How to Tap into the Heart and Soul of Your Organization When You Write.3. Determine which communications channels you’ll use.There are a variety of online and offline channels that you can use to send the right message to the right audiences. Examples of online channels include your website, search marketing, email marketing and social networking. Offline channels include things like direct mail, paid advertising and public relations.4. Decide which resources you need to get the job done.Ensure that you have all of your tools and resources in place to make your job-and the jobs of your audience(s)-as easy, effective and cost-effective as possible.Is email an important part of your plan, but you’re still communicating with supporters via Outlook? (eek! Stop what you’re doing and read 5 Steps to Choosing the Ideal Email Service Provider)Is your website well-branded and easy to use, with a clear way to donate?Is your website set up to take safe, secure online donations? (I of course recommend Network for Good!)5. Determine who will execute your campaign steps.Accountability will make or break the success of a campaign. As much fun as it is to pass the buck, now is as good a time as any to decide which members of your organization, board or volunteers are responsible for the different portions of your campaign.6. Lay out how you will measure your success.In the case of holiday fundraising, this could be as simple as a dollar sign with a number after it. But take a moment to consider what other goals you may have. Wow your organization’s Board and leadership with conversation rates, list-building, website traffic and any other number results into which they can sink their teeth.7. Set your timeline and benchmarks.One of the defining features of a campaign is that it has a defined start and end. Now that you have planned out the ‘who, what and why’ questions of your campaigns, it’s time to determine the when. Continue to build your campaign plan by setting ownership and deadlines for the associated activities. Begin with the end in mind – if your campaign will run from 11/1 – 12/31, work backwards to be sure that all activities will happen in a smooth manner. Don’t use magical thinking to set deadlines! Run activities in parallel if you are worried about compression time-wise.Good luck!last_img read more