It's teacher hunting season!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Fred Klonsky: Chicago Shows What a Teachers' Union Really Looks Like

(March to Chicago Public Schools [CPS] headquarters after 5,000 strong mass rally)
[The protest rally was in preparation for a coming strike authorization vote.] Fred Klonsky reports today:

(Photo of latest mass rally)

“It’s not like the old days,” IEA President Cinda Klickna said to me in explanation of why the IEA wasn’t doing a very good job of mobilizing members earlier this year, canceling a mass rally in Springfield with the bogus excuse of Capitol construction. Recent attempts to take credit for the local demonstrations at many legislators offices are pretty smelly. Yesterday, the young dynamic leaders of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) took a page from the old days and turned out over 5,000 teachers to a mass rally at the old Auditorium Theater. Then they poured out on to Michigan Avenue and marched on the board of education offices on Clark Street. In a pathetic last minute attempt to undermine the rally, the little Mayor of Chicago whispered at a press conference that, sure, teachers should get a raise. But anyone could see through his sorry ass words. The lesson is one that both the Mayor and other teacher unions must learn. Chicago teachers have become a beacon to teachers everywhere. Watch out! The red shirts are coming.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Principal in Sex Harass of Women; Walcott Stood By Him

Two standards of justice exist in the New York City Department of Education (NYC DOE). For staff there are few rights. For principals and other supervisors there is tremendous leniency and forgiveness.
A Regents test cheating scandal or a sex harass case, the accused stays on the job. Demoted maybe, but usually not fired.
Now a clarification, I say for such cases, staff or supervisors, that the claims, the charges must be recognized as allegations, and there should be stronger cases than rumor. There should be due process, and trials outside of the news media. Accused should be innocent until proven guilty.
However, we must also say that there should be a consistent standard. Staff are guilty until they can prove their innocence. We do not find consistent application of standards with the higher-ups in the education field, particularly in the NYC DOE.
Last month, the South Bronx blogger raised this point and he brought renewed attention to the case of "Dr." (from a diploma mill) Mychael Willon, someone with the equivalent of a guilty plea to the charge of lewd acts in a Wichita bookstore. South Bronx reminds us that the DOE eventually let him go from his "LIS" [local instructional superintendent] position supervising principals in the Bronx. "Dr." Willon did get to move to a plum executive position at a private Texas education firm. Now, South Bronx raised this case in the context of publicizing the case of the accused principal John Chase, Jr. It is alleged that he made vulgar comments to female staff about a copy machine's ability to do things for his private areas. Click here for the quotes too vulgar for this blog, from the police report.
Lost amidst other "education news" over the past week was the news that the DOE demoted principal Chase. reported on May 15 that the DOE has moved Chase over to the position of assistant principal at a location yet to be determined.
Take an inventory, there was a police report. The allegations against accused the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) president did not reach the level of a police report. However, his case garnered two days of front page coverage from the New York Post.
More of an inventory of the DOE kid gloves treatment of the accused principal, compared with accused teachers removed from the classroom:
DOE officials say there was no formal disciplinary hearing.
After the report came out in November, Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott let Chase keep his job. The accused principal received a letter of reprimand and was forced to undergo sensitivity training.
Oh, and the Gothamist site reported, May 16, the additional news that
Could this [decision to move Chase over to an AP position some place] have anything to do with the fact the DOE is now investigating NEW claims by a 15-year-old girl that Chase made comments that made her uncomfortable?

Actually, very creepy comments. See the details at Chaz's post, comments that spurred to child to contact the police. For comparable sub-administrator educators, the outcomes are routinely, four-digit fines or suspensions of pay, and feeding of stories to the Post that would make rabid wolves blush.
Remember, when Walcott or another big, or the media speaks, accused teachers are guilty when charged. Chaz gave us Walcott's latest standy-by-your-man. Principles of fair treatment apply to principals:
On the new allegation, he said, “Just because an accusation is made doesn’t mean a person is guilty.”

The allegations against Chase involved non-consensuality, harassment by a superior over subordinates, features of a hostile work environment, and plenty of salaciousness. Where was the public media execution of Chase as there has been for countless accused New York City teachers?
Additionally, disturbing, disgusting was Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott's statement that amounts to an instance of "Stand by Your Man," albeit in January. "'We're going to make sure he goes for the appropriate training, but at the same time we have an investment to make as far as leadership is concerned,' Walcott said in January," reported last week. Interesting. Walcott is overlooking the alleged abuse and trauma of women workers, with the justification of standing by "an investment" of leadership.
Let's be clear, there should not be public media trials. We have just noted how the DOE has double standards when it comes to allegations and justice. Yet, the media practices the same double standards. We are not calling for public trial; but we are calling out the outrageous, classist inconsistency in the media treatment of the accused.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Why Post-Scooped Mulgrew Sex Story has Political Relevance --UPDATED

(Go to the bottom of this post for UPDATES; these updates also deal with the political ramifications.) This New York Post salacious story, "UFT ‘sex coverup’: Union chief caught in act at school: lawsuit", is just another media outlet's union-bashing attack on a powerful union official who helps the less fortunate. Not so fast.
The Post's story this morning of United Federation of Teachers president Michael Mulgrew does indeed have great significance.  It moves beyond the level of a salacious tee-hee story to one of great importance.  For the first half of the article it justs reads as sour grapes gloating over an embarrassing story of improper behavior.
However, the story matters a great deal for the integrity of UFT president Mulgrew.  If the facts are indeed true, they raise highly disturbing concerns for the membership.
First the details: an aggrieved teacher at the Frank Sinatra High School of the Arts in Queens alleges that Mulgrew engaged in a sexual act on a shop table in a wood shop of the school campus of William E. Grady Vocational High School --Mulgrew's last teaching assignment, and that he was caught "in flagrante delicto" [Latin, "in blazing offence"] by a school janitor. His alleged partner in the act was a school guidance counselor. So far, just a sleazy story of misconduct and more than a little bad judgment.
Then come the political details. The article reveals that his act partner received a nice union office job on the side. (For the uninitiated, the union office jobs generally come with a second pension and a token appearance at the school.)
One former staffer at Grady High School made comments that cut to the core of the issue:
“The sex thing, it’s between them and nobody’s business,” one said. “The thing that upset me is the patronage job to Mendez — rewarding her with a high-paying job with my union dues.”

Coincidentally, soon after the alleged encounter, Mulgrew ascended to the position of UFT Vice President of Vocational Schools.
In 2005, soon after the alleged incident, Mulgrew became UFT vice president for career and technical high schools. Around the same time, Camacho-Mendez transferred to the HS of Telecommunication Arts and Technology in Brooklyn, but got a part-time job in Mulgrew’s union office.
She was later given the full-time position of UFT liaison for special education. She gets two paychecks — $22,000 in UFT compensation on top of her $85,000 city salary, although she’s no longer a guidance counselor. In 2010, Mulgrew presented Camacho-Mendez with a UFT award.
“No one ever heard of this woman until Mulgrew brought her on board,” said a longtime UFT rep. “She had no union credentials.”
This article alleges that the school's administration, the principal, participated in the hush-hush. Here's where the story gets political. You cannot be a strong union advocate of teachers when the principal, and now, by extension, the Department of Education (DOE) higher-ups, "have the goods on you." This is why Mulgrew is caught literally, in a compromised position. Compromised positions affect integrity and the ability to fully serve out duties. This is why military and security agencies are expected to treat this issue with vigilance.
Mulgrew demonstrates a profound weakness with his handling of several high-profile matters. First, he has sold out the union by agreeing to the tying of teacher performance evaluations to student test scores. He himself has conceded that the tests are statistically inconsistent. The New York State Department of Education's Meryl Tisch publicly upbraided the makers of the latest test, Pearson, publishers of several tests recently administered to elementary school aged children, for rampant test errors. Yet, scholars have often cited poverty as a greater factor in the appearance of low test scores. For example, see former principal Mel Riddile's "PISA: It's Poverty Not Stupid."
Second, there is the Absent Teacher Reserve matter. ATR teachers are senior teachers. The city Department of Education, under mayoral control --which Mulgrew and Weingarten in principle agree with, only allots so much to particular schools. Thus, the city encourages principals to hire down the pay scale. So, while the media excoriates Last In, First Out, the reality is that principals hire new or relatively new teachers over experienced ones. Where does this leave excessed teachers? The ATR pool. The DOE will create hundreds of ATRs in June with the shuttering and the immediate reopening of the schools with new names and new budget numbers. The UFT's mantra was that it would protect ATRs. Now, some teachers will question this with talk of a buy-out.
We wonder why the lack of real strength on cutting edge issues? Could it be that the DOE had the goods on Mulgrew and this restrained him from going further on some of the most pressing issues for teachers? Could it be that Mulgrew is now of the two percent with his "$250,400 a year [salary], plus benefits," rather than the 98 percent?
Interesting: both the evaluations cave in announcement in February and the ATR cave in this Thursday, came in 24 hours after the Delegate Assemblies, where trouble could brew, in the absence of rehearsed, scripted opponents of statements by those representatives truly defending members' interests.
Many UFT members are snow-under by Mulgrew's scowl when interviewed and by his grandiose acts such as dissing New York Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott to his face with his D rating of the Department of Education's performance. They and UFT-friendly outsiders are saying that "Mulgrew is better than Randi" [Weingarten, Mulgrew's successor]. This Post article furthers the myth, giving Mulgrew the "fiery" label.
But these gestures by Mulgrew are comparatively tame. He needs to go beyond the nyeh-nyeh-ing to Walcott and show the real potency of the union, and have mass rallies.
All of this is why many union members are viewing the union leadership as a royal fiefdom insulated from the mass of the membership, why some members are looking for a UFT caucus with MORE action, real defense of members, rather than empty bluster, to give deeper analysis of the issues, not the Mulgrew clique's brief soundbytes.
Read more of Susan Edelman's story at the Post: UFT President Michael Mulgrew accused of sex-scandal cover-up in federal suit -
See Betsy Combier's Parents Advocate blog for 2005 principal lawsuit query:
She closes her contribution with the clincher,
So, what's the truth, Mike? Why did the Principal of Grady sue you and Ellie Engler in 2005? What was the settlement? The public does need to know.
And why are you on the payroll of the DOE through 2010?
Did you hide your affair and other actions at William Grady, then decide you would not help members put into the same situation? If so, perhaps you should resign.
We go now to the 2005 lawsuit, by a principal against Mulgrew for defamation.
It appears to be retaliation against Mulgrew and other union officials for complaints over alleged principal misconduct in asbestos removal. Mulgrew and company complained of the principal's asking teachers and students to work on the site: [he] "directed students and a teacher to tear down library walls and shelves even though he knew the room contained asbestos, then tried to cover up the incident".Here is the substance of the case between Mulgrew and Grady HS principal Ivor Neuschotz. This lawsuit? It was settled out of court the next year. Was there an I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine quid pro quo, agreement between Mulgrew and Neuschotz to keep hushed about each other's scandals?
2005 a special year for Mulgrew. As we noted before, he had the on-campus fling with his colleague. And in the same year UFT president Randi Weingarten chose him as vice-president of the vocational school division of the union.
So, Mulgrew had the goods on the principal, who kept hush-hush. Again, this cuts to the core of how this is a valid political story. Just how can you go toe-to-toe with opponents when the opponents have you in mutual agreements to keep hush-hush?
Back in 1993 president Bill Clinton was searching for an attorney general. His first two appointees had minor legal problems stalling his appointment for the office.
That episode should be an object lesson that you thoroughly vet candidates for high or sensitive positions. We wonder, why did Randi Weingarten fast-track Mulgrew to the Presidency when he had the Camacho-Mendez affair in his closet? Were there not any Janet Reno-clean candidates that she could have considered?
[This story reeks of double standards. The alleged classroom tryst of two language teachers at James Madison High School, like Mulgrew were caught by a member of the custodial staff. These teachers, in 2009, the year of Mulgrew's moving to the UFT presidency, got assigned to a "rubber room." Mulgrew, when he was supposedly caught in an improper intimate act was on his way to Vice President. The end of their story: termination. The end for Mulgrew: the insulated presidency. The question some teachers might at this point ask: do we have a rubber room president?]
* * *
Finally, the Rubber Room Reporter has linked Gotham Schools' page on Grady H.S. It got a D rating for 2009-2010. It is a mostly male school; yet the top graduates are female. The graduation rate is 49 percent. That is not exactly the model of success in the DOE's eyes. It is the kind of school that might head soon for transformation. Mulgrew's old peers at Grady HS could soon be out of their positions and find themselves ATRs. Don't you think that Mulgrew is relieved that he is a mere mortal teacher?
His track record as a union leader, looking out for his fellow teachers shows a failure of compassion and understanding. The settling for a test score-based evaluation program. The abandonment of teachers whose school becomes a turnaround or transformation school to excessed status. Does he ever imagine if his fate was more like the hapless teachers at James Madison or dozens at Grady?
As Combier asks, "What was the settlement? The public does need to know."
* * *
Our brotherly blogger at Ed Notes added these observations about the story:
For those of us who are challenging his leadership for NOT battling the ed deformers and protecting teachers, this story is meaningless other than it exposes the level of Unity Caucus corruption and how they protect their own while leaving most teachers to hang.
--------UPDATED with comment from Michael Fiorillo
I agree with Norm that UFT collaboration with Bloomberg predates Mulgrew, and is predicated on much deeper corruption and deception, which also includes the self-deception of the leadership and its patronage recipients.
If the UFT/AFT didn't already accept or agree with the outlines of the neoliberal project on education, would this (alleged) tawdry episode be enough to maintain it? Not likely.
On the other hand, John Kenneth Galbreath said that all revolutions are the kicking in of a rotten door, and we all know the UFT structure is rotten, despite the presence of decent, hard working people in the union. That's the destiny of every entrenched, single party state, and that's the potential significance of this story: at a certain point, the superstructure is so internally compromised that it can no longer support itself, and crumbles before a gust of wind.
If this is that gust of wind (doubtful in my mind, but you never know), the question then becomes, who will benefit from the resulting crisis: an invigorated rank and file fed up with years of lies and abuse, or the Overclass, which seeks to use it for its own avaricious ends?

Assailed Teacher: NYC Teachers Want MORE

The blog "Assailed Teacher," has written a powerful piece, accompanying a new United Federation of Teachers caucus' mission statement. (The Movement of Rank and File Educators, "M.O.R.E.," has formed as an alternative to the Unity caucus which has total dominance over the UFT.)

"New York City and its Teachers Want MORE" The blogger has written some incisive comments accompanying each of the agenda points appearing in the MORE caucus mission statement, challenging a different course from that which the dominating Unity caucus has pursued.

The new caucus mission statement and Assailed Teacher's critique, too valuable to edit down, appears thusly:

New York City’s teacher union, the United Federation of Teachers, has been dominated by a caucus known as Unity. This was the caucus formed by Albert Shanker that rolled all of the old, independent teacher unions in NYC into one (hence the name, “Unity”).

And Unity has had a stranglehold on the UFT since Shanker. The UFT is the largest single chapter of the American Federation of Teachers and, it is commonly assumed, as the UFT goes, so does the AFT.

Randi Weingarten’s tenure as UFT president reflects what Unity’s strategy has been for the past 30 years. She took the lead when the teacher-bashing campaign started kicking into high gear. Bloomberg and Klein were floating the meme that teachers were overpaid union bums whose bloated pensions were burdening government coffers. They had fresh ideas for “reform” and bums like Randi were barriers to “progress”.

Instead of fighting Bloom-Klein head-on, she decided to compromise with them on the 2005 contract, giving them much of what they wanted. It is this contract that created the Absent Teacher Reserve crisis and denuded the tenure rights that Shanker had helped institute decades earlier. In short, Unity in 2005 backpedaled on what Unity throughout the 1970s had gained.

Randi is not stupid. She did this because the atmosphere in 2005 was toxic for teachers, much like it is now. The union she led was the bad guy in the public’s mind. Giving back many of the hard-fought rights of teachers might help rehabilitate the reputation of the union, Randi must have thought. At the very least, it would cause the reformers to call off their attack dogs in the media.

Well, none of that happened. Randi gave back those rights and the attacks merely intensified. Meanwhile, Randi catapulted to the leadership of the AFT. I believe she now has her eyes on national office, maybe Secretary of Education. If Obama is inclined to dump Arne Duncan in his second term, who better to mollify the teachers’ unions than Randi? After all, they will not be able to criticize his Race to the Top program if one of their own is on the inside. Although, it is not like the AFT or the NEA have been overly critical of RTTT as it is.

This explains why Randi was recently quoted praising Joel Klein as a man of “integrity”. She seems to feel bad that Joel Klein’s parent company is embroiled in a wire-tapping scandal. “It can’t be fun for him” she explained in a Clinton-esque display of feeling other people’s pain.

Can she feel the pain of all the teachers who are suffering under a contract she negotiated seven years ago?

So, while I recognize that it was the UFT and Unity that had earned the few rights we have left as NYC teachers, I also recognize that it was Unity who gave most of them back. As symbolized by Randi, Unity will do what is good for Unity.

I have been in contact with teachers in urban school districts across the country and they all sing the same song about their unions: they are collaborators in education deform. Los Angeles, Chicago, Newark and all points in between have produced teachers who feel sold out by their unions.

We might not mind so much if there was some give-and-take. Randi collaborated to improve the union’s image, not to mention her own, but it has not stopped the screws from being put to us in the court of public opinion. Randi still comes off as a shrill union hack on the television screen and teachers are still lazy bums living high on the hog.

Then the Chicago teachers made their move. They deposed their collaborator caucus and replace it with the Caucus of Rank-and-File Educators. They got rid of all the bloated union salaries at the top; the sinecures occupied by burnouts who have not taught since the Reagan Era. Maybe this is why they are now able to stockpile money to prepare to sustain their members in the case of a strike?

More importantly, they have drawn a line in the sand against their dictator mayor, Rahm Emmanuel, and his Bloomberg-esque plans for ed reform. They have learned that collaboration gets teachers nowhere. Now is the time for resistance.

It is time for teachers in America’s first city to take cues from the second city.

That is why the Movement of Rank-and-File Educators has been formed. Caucus elections are coming up within the next year. There will be a new box to check, next to which will be the acronym MORE.

NYC teachers, when the new evaluation system gets put into place by the start of 2014, the one that will determine your career and the future of your students by value-added, high-stakes testing; the one that will force you out of the system with virtually no due process if the results of those tests are found lacking; the one that will have principals check little boxes on observation reports which judge you on your bulletin boards and the way you dress; never forget who negotiated that system: Unity.

It was Unity whose brass sat in a smoke-filled room with ed deform officials for days hammering out that system. It was Unity who then turned to us and promoted it as the greatest thing since sliced bread. Their line was, “if you think this is bad, you should see what they’re doing in Tennessee.” In other words, this is the best we could hope for in the age of ed deform. In other words, we collaborated so as not to look like barriers to “progress”. In other words, it was Unity business as usual, the same business that saw Randi sell us out in 2005.

Contrast this to MORE. MORE represents that era, hopefully not too far in the future, when people’s patience with “compromise” comes to an end. Compromise has been the Trojan Horse that has destroyed public education over the past 10 years.

No more Trojan Horses. It is time for us to launch a thousand ships against education reform instead.

Or, for now, we will settle for 9:

MISSION STATEMENT (as adopted April 21, 2012)

A – Who we are and why we are forming

1. We are members of the UFT and members of school communities and their allies.

In other words, this is MORE than a caucus. It is a movement in which everyone who has a stake in public education is welcome.

2. We insist on receiving professional dignity and respect, and we insist on a strong, democratic union emerging from an educated and active rank and file. We oppose the lack of democracy and one-party state that has governed our union for half a century. It has conceded to our adversaries’ agendas and has collaborated with their attacks on us, leading to the terrible situation we find ourselves in.

Unity domination means collaboration. This collaboration has been carried out by Unity in an undemocratic way in order to achieve undemocratic ends. It is perfectly in step with the corporate coup that has seized this country over the past three decades. MORE is perfectly in step with the coming backlash against this corporate coup.

3. We insist on a better educational environment for ourselves and for the students whose lives we touch. Because of this resolve, we have established the MORE Caucus, which will educate, organize and mobilize the UFT membership.

Teachers, through the denuding of tenure and the exaltation of high-stakes testing, have been silenced. This has hampered our ability to speak up for the children, mostly poor and minority, who we teach. In an era when third world poverty is becoming the norm in America’s inner-cities, this is a scary prospect, one that must be resisted at all costs.

B – For an improved contract

4. It is time to end the UFT’s concession to the language and assumptions of the so-called reformers and the wave of concessions and givebacks that result from conceding these assumptions. We must be prepared to take collective action, if necessary, in defense of our interests, and to achieve a decent contract.

No more Randi Weingartens who, because she has an eye on national office, shares in the data-driven discourse that frames all the discussion around education. Instead of self-aggrandizers who use the union platform to enrich their prospects for power, we need a union that believes that what happens to one of us happens to all of us. Instead of corporate unionism that celebrates individual gain, we want MORE social justice unionism that celebrates solidarity,

5. We seek a contract with retroactive pay, that is not obtained by selling off what few protections remain. We insist on defending tenure, due process rights, pensions, and an immediate end to the arbitrary denial of tenure to probationary teachers. We oppose any teacher evaluations based on standardized tests.

When Randi gave away many of our rights in 2005, she tried to soften the blow by saying that we had received raises. Yet, these were merely cost of living increases that we had been forgoing for years. There was a time when COLA was just part of the deal and did not have to be bought by giving up something of ours. It was an abandonment of one of the hallmarks of public-sector unionism.

And these give-backs put us under the thumb of administrators, from principals on up to the mayor, so that they could lay the ground work for corporate ed deform: ending tenure, perpetual probation for new teachers and high-stakes testing.

C – For quality curricula

6. We stand for a union that recognizes that teacher working conditions are student learning conditions and that, after parents, teachers are best situated to understand the needs of young people.

In the world of education reform, non-educators like Andrew Rotherham and Salman Khan are looked to as experts. People from elite universities who have never taught a day in their lives or spent an hour in an inner-city area have set the standard for what poor children should be learning.

Teaching is a profession to which people dedicate their lives, at least this is how it should be. Just like you would not take medicine that an economist prescribes for you, children should not have to attend schools where the major policies are determined by educrats with no education experience at all.

7. We insist that high stakes tests no longer deprive New York City’s children of exposure to foreign language, science, social studies and the arts. We insist that curricula taught in our schools be mindful and respectful of the needs and backgrounds of our students, that they nurture in them the potential for active, reflective citizenship, and is committed to racial and gender equity, democracy and economic justice.

High-stakes testing is for public school students. Those are the students that just so happen to be disproportionately poor and minority. Staking everything on exams for a limited number of subjects limits the curriculum. Art, history and English are fading away because math and science are seen as the subjects that will “prepare kids for the 21st century”.

The result of this is that the poorest students will never be exposed to the subjects that would cause them to think critically about the world around them, especially the world of oppression and poverty in which they remain mired. Narrowing the curriculum narrows the horizons of children and is a perfect recipe for the perpetuation of what can be deemed a lumpenproletariat.

D – Our communities, our schools

8. We reject the corporate takeover of the public schools, and the wave of school closures in the city, which have particularly affected poor communities with high proportions of people of color. We insist on a moratorium on the opening of new charter schools. We seek to end the cuts to education which have led to increasing class sizes as well as inadequate social, health, guidance personnel and services.

Most of the school closings past, present and future have been accompanied by more charter school co-locations. This means that buildings that were once totally dedicated to public schooling are being eroded away to make room for corporate charters. At the same time that public schools are seeing their budgets slashed and vital programs jettisoned, more and more public funding has been made available to charter schools. When you consider that charters skim the best public school students of a community and are able to expel the ones that give them the most problems, it means that more resources are going to kids that do not need it as much as the kids from whom they are being taken.

This is the latest form of segregation. Charters segregate based on family background and ability within communities that are already segregated by race. It is hyper-segregation.

9. The schools should be the people’s schools. We stand for democratic governance and popular control of our school system that fully reflects the needs, aspirations and diversity of those who make up its parent and student body. Mayoral control, which is inherently undemocratic, must be abolished, and be replaced by an elected people’s board of education which represents the interests of teachers, students, parents, and community.

The people who sing the praises of school “choice” are the same people who applaud big city mayors around the country who dissolve popularly elected school boards in favor of corporate-style, CEO management from the top. It is telling how the whole movement for “choice” has seen a new generation of educational leaders who exercise more power over public education now than at any other point in our history. When is the last time any Secretary of Education exercised as much power as Arne Duncan?

The term “choice” is a subterfuge that masks the fascistic manner in which education reform has been instituted.

MORE is where the real education reform is.