California Educator

May / June 2017

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Public schools in Union City, New Jersey, are pre- sented as an alternative to privatization . W hen a court case forced the state to adequately fund public schools, students thrived, even those living in poverty. In fact, New Jersey 's public scho ol s now have the narrowest achievement gap in the country between poor students and those who are not. Charter school operators intentionally focus on poor neigh- borhoods, Backpack points out, taking resources away from where they are needed the most. " You go into a wealthy community and you w on't see charter schools," observes Rhonda Brownstein, former exec- utive director of Education Law Center, which advocates for Pennsylvania public schools. "Why? ey don't need them. ey're happy with their pub- lic schools because they 're well-funded." Charter and voucher sup- porters claim their goal is to help poor children succeed, but the creators of Backpack feel otherwise. "What we learned making this film is that the movement for free-market 'reform' has largely ignored the larger challenges that need to be addressed — child poverty, racial segregation and unequal funding," say the film's creators in a statement. In the epilogue, in what may have been an unanticipated add-on after the election, we see privatization proponent Betsy DeVos appointed U.S. secretary of education. It's noted that in her home state of Michigan, test scores dropped drastically after $1 billion was spent on charter schools. "What does this mean for America's future?" we are asked at the end of the film. e answer is far from certain, and the battle to save public schools is just beginning. To find a screening near you, or to request a screening, visit or ere is a charge for screenings, determined by type and size of the venue. " The movement for free-market 'reform' has largely ignored the larger challenges that need to be addressed — child poverty, racial segregation and unequal funding." — From the creators of Backback Full of Cash Actor and activist Matt Damon, whose mother is a teacher, narrates Backpack Full of Cash. 44 20062 School of Education Attend an information meeting on June 22 at 6 p.m. at any APU campus location. Register today at Teachers See the Possibilities In Jennifer Swanson's high school English class, seniors master material that prepares them for college and careers, gaining writing and communication skills to benefit them throughout their lives. Azusa Pacific's School of Education prepares educators like Jennifer to see and cultivate the potential in every student. Graduates go on to make a lasting difference as creative, collaborative professionals and dedicated advocates for those they serve. Advance your calling with a master's or doctoral degree, credential, or certificate from a top Christian university and join a mentoring community of educators who will help you make an even greater impact. Programs available online and at locations throughout Southern California 6 Arroyo High School, Expository English Class, Teacher: Jennifer Swanson '96, M.A.Ed. '99

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