SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
*** UPDATED x1 *** The rest of the story

Thursday, Apr 10, 2014

* From Illinois Watchdog

The Illinois House has approved a three-year ban on virtual charter schools, the moratorium coming shortly after a one-year ban expired.

“It’s an amazing story about what they want to do here in Illinois. We are going absolutely backward in terms of education reform and education innovation,” said Ted Dabrowski, vice president of policy at the Illinois Policy Institute.

Much of the political pressure for the ban came from teachers unions, Dabrowski said.

“The school districts in Illinois have massive power. We have 868 school districts, the most in the nation, and they have massive power to keep out charter schools. They want to keep out competition, and so the unions and a couple of the legislators…have worked very hard to block reforms,” Dabrowski said. “There’s a lot of politics as usual.”

* But Dabrowski isn’t just on the Illinois Policy Institute’s payroll. From a June, 2013 Daily Herald story

A controversial push to open the Illinois Virtual Charter School at Fox River Valley in August ended during Tuesday’s state charter school commission meeting, barely 24 hours after the applicants withdrew their pending appeals in a surprise change of course.

School boards in 18 districts from Algonquin to Plainfield refused to grant a charter to Virtual Learning Solutions, a fledgling nonprofit that formed last winter to apply for the school. The applicants appealed to the state commission for a second opinion, launching a process that was expected to wrap up in late July after public hearings and interviews by commissioners.

Then, on May 24, Gov. Pat Quinn approved a one-year moratorium on the establishment of new virtual charter schools, throwing the appeal process into limbo. […]

Ted Dabrowski, a Wilmette resident who works as vice president of policy at the Illinois Policy Institute, took over as president of Virtual Learning Solutions when Sharnell Jackson resigned the week the moratorium became law. He said Monday it was “obvious” the one-year moratorium required his group’s project be put on hold.

Dabrowski had served as the company’s treasurer before taking over as president.

*** UPDATE *** A peevish response from the Illinois Policy Institute…

Rich,

Do you even care about facts? Ted is a VOLUNTEER at that school, no comp, only gives his time because he cares about educating kids who are under served by the traditional system.

You are wrongly feeding the union backed narrative that something is going on that is not. What is going on is the public system continues to fail the poor and minorities and it is the unions that are preventing choices that help the very people they lock into the failing system.

Helping to inaccurately disparage good people who volunteer their time, whether you agree with their policies or not, is appalling. The school is a non profit, and Ted is a volunteer board member. You should have pointed that out, he has no financial interest in that charter or the expansion of charters. To say or imply otherwise is to mislead your readers. Meanwhile, the unions DO have a financial interest, as do local school boards, in blocking charters that would help children.

What a sad commentary.

John


John Tillman
CEO

Illinois Policy Institute
Illinois Policy Action

- Posted by Rich Miller        


31 Comments
  1. - Gabe - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:04 am:

    You know…I’m starting to get the feeling that the folks at the IPI might not be telling us the whole truth.


  2. - PublicServant - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:11 am:

    Thanks for following the money Rich.


  3. - OneMan - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:12 am:

    The whole virtual charter thing was really unpopular with school boards (and based off what people were saying at my local school board meeting, folks in the districts in general)
    in the Fox Valley.


  4. - William j Kelly - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:16 am:

    I am starting to believe that people might be starting to believe that iPi is duplicitous.


  5. - Demoralized - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:24 am:

    What. A. Joke.

    The IPI shows yet again why it’s a worthless organization.


  6. - Judgment Day - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:53 am:

    So, would this ban extension affect a ‘virtual’ charter school that decided to base it’s ‘virtual operations’ around the Khan Academy lesson plans?

    Link: https://www.khanacademy.org/

    If so, that’s just sheer lunacy by the teachers unions. Khan Academy is a proven operation.

    Don’t want the state of Illinois to get a reputation as being a leader in “trailing edge technology”.


  7. - Walker - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:56 am:

    Is IPI any better a source for information than Dan Proft?


  8. - OneMan - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 9:59 am:

    Judgement Day…

    At least in my district the opposition wasn’t driven by the school teachers at all. It was driven in large part by the school board who didn’t want to see money going to a charter operator…


  9. - Obamas Puppy - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:01 am:

    you mean school reformers are trying to make money off of kids? Shocking (sarcasm). I guess local control only matters when it works in your favor.


  10. - SonofSuperAbe2014 - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:05 am:

    Like the idea of virtual charter schools, but have grave concerns about IPI. I understand they are moving their home office to Cicero. Makes it much easier for Dan Proft to commute.


  11. - From the 'Dale to HP - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:08 am:

    If there is a bigger scam than “school reform” in Illinois these days, I’d love to know about it.


  12. - Willie Stark - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:10 am:

    IPI is just a bunch of grifters guzzling wingnut welfare gravy by the gallon. All part of the big con. Blago may have left town on a rail, but a different kind of razzle dazzle machine spins on. Enjoy it while you can, hucksters, it won’t last forever.


  13. - AFSCME Steward - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:20 am:

    “The school districts in Illinois have massive power. We have 868 school districts, the most in the nation, and they have massive power to keep out charter schools. They want to keep out competition, and so the unions and a couple of the legislators…have worked very hard to block reforms,” Dabrowski said. “There’s a lot of politics as usual.”

    It is really convienent for those to push charter schools to blame unions & politics for opposition. The reality is that those pushing these schools treat the word charter as if it were a magic pill that somehow fixed all of the problems present in the education of Illinois’ children. Yes there are some charter schools that are excellent, but there are also union staffed public schools that are as good, or even better. There are also charter schools that are mediocre or worse. Many charter schools cherry pick the students they will take. The expulsion rate is significantly higher in charter schools than public. These facts skew the reliability of comparisons. Except for a handfull of specialty schools, public schools have to take everyone who resides in their district. They have significantly higher rates of special ed students than the charters. I do believe that charters should be an option for parents, however, they are not the solution that some would paint them to be.

    The real issue here is money. There is a lot of money that can be made from charters. Even the non-profits have well compensated CEO’s and other officers.


  14. - Downstater - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:22 am:

    Virtual schools can provide a real impact on improving education in Illinois and other states. These schools should be supported financially.


  15. - Nearly Normal - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:32 am:

    Khan Academy is good for supplementing what the teachers are doing in the classroom. I have colleagues who have used their math materials and find that it appeals to many students and is most helpful for explaining complicated problems and concepts.

    However, not all students function well without an educator present when doing online courses. There are times when they have questions that are not answered through the computer and need a teacher to assist.

    We used the Illinois Virtual School (http://www.ilvirtual.org/home) that offers a variety of online courses. I had students take these courses when they were short a credit or wanted/needed a course not offered in our school.

    Again, most were able to do the work via computer but told me that they would not like to do online all day.

    My question is do we need a virtual charter school when there already exists online courses and materials for students? How about incorporating what we have into the public schools and let those students who would do well online use them?


  16. - Walker - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:42 am:

    Nearly Normal: Wow! Common sense in an education discussion. Thanks.


  17. - Judgment Day - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:53 am:

    Nearly Normal:

    Thank you for the information. I’m just cautious of these ‘bans’ where it turns out to be more for reasons of political ideology than the existence of real problems. I was hoping it was not another case of being a ‘ban’ (see Senator Ira’s causes for examples) trying to ban/restrict something like ‘virtual charters’ just because ‘it’s new’.


  18. - archimedes - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:56 am:

    The Virtual Charter for Fox Valley was poorly designed with presentations to local school boards done by anyone they could send. When asked any question, they said they would have to get back to the Board on that, and never did.

    Virtual schools have a place - augmenting Home Schooling, augmenting regular (ala Kahn Academy) - but replacing regular school at over $10,000 a student is ridiculous.


  19. - CD - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:57 am:

    Don’t forget, one of Scott Reeder’s kids likes to use an iPad so that means we need to support the for profit charter company that Dabrowski is affiliated with. IPI, IPA, ay ay ay.


  20. - MrJM - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 11:02 am:

    Just when I think I’ve become too cynical about the whole charter school racket, it turns out I’ve been naive.

    – MrJM


  21. - wordslinger - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 11:02 am:

    Is there something preventing Dabrowski from starting a private, virtual school? You’d think an IPI guy would want to go the free enterprise route, rather than feed at the public trough.


  22. - Demoralized - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 11:26 am:

    ==Do you even care about facts?==

    That statement is hillarious considering who it is coming from. Mr. Tillman is skilled at the art of providing misinformation.


  23. - Here we go... - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 11:35 am:

    IPI complaining about special interests is like calling the kettle black!

    IPI IS the special interest of the 1%er’s - folks like… Koch,Rauner, Griffin, etc.

    IPI serves their special interest masters with an extremely low rate of return on the investment.

    At least you get what you pay for with labor!


  24. - Union Thug - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 12:17 pm:

    Pretty disingenuous story here from IL watchdog. The charter commission itself recommended an extension of the moratorium to develop polices to govern them. Its crazy that groups can publish stories like this and get away with it. Here’s the article on the commission recommending the extension:

    http://beaconnews.suntimes.com/news/schools/25703175-418/commission-recommends-virtual-charter-ban-extension.html

    As for Dobrowski, he’ll need to wait a few more years before the big pay day.


  25. - From the 'Dale to HP - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 12:33 pm:

    “What is going on is the public system continues to fail the poor and minorities and it is the unions that are preventing choices that help the very people they lock into the failing system.” So IPI and Tillman are all for allowing kids from Waukegan or Rodgers Park to go to school in Winnetka? I mean if you want choice, let anyone go to any public school, anywhere.


  26. - Pete - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 12:34 pm:

    at Union Thug…

    “The charter commission itself recommended an extension of the moratorium to develop polices to govern them.”
    ________________________

    This sounds like the Ethics reform bill that everyone voted for, but lingered in committee because it just wasn’t strong enough.


  27. - Larry the Cable Guy - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 12:35 pm:

    Don’t disparage Ted the Disparager? Now that there’s funny.


  28. - the Other Anonymous - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 1:09 pm:

    The problem with peevish comments is that it piques the interest of people like me.

    Virtual Learning Solutions was incorporated only in January 2013 as an Illinois Not-for-profit. However, it is not a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization. There is a difference between the two, and to the extent that IPI paints VLS as some sort of charitable, do-gooder organization the tax status belies that claim.

    Plus, if you look at how money flows to privately owned charter schools, any compensation received by Dabrowski might not necessarily flow through VLS. Usually the organization getting the charter has a management contract with a for-profit entity, and compensation flows through that entity.

    I’ll accept that Dabrowski does not receive compensation from VLS, and that he may never receive compensation from them. The real question is whether any entity will be giving him compensation as a result of his involvement in VLS.


  29. - justsayin' - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 1:42 pm:

    Let’s see. IPI takes $500,000 plus from Rauner and helps in its own “501c3 way” his campaign. IPI’s board member is Rauner’s co-finance chair. IPI’s sister group Dan Proft’s IOP - all those people are involved in Rauner’s term limits group. Ted Dambrowski of IPI is the head of VLS and IPI was lobbying on behalf of virtual schools last year. Proft’s partner, Eric Kohn, was treasurer of VLS. VLS stood to receive millions in taxpayer dollars. IPI also sponsors Proft’s radio show on WLS. Ethical? Pot isn’t just calling kettle black. Pot is screaming at kettle.


  30. - Old and in the Way - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 8:56 pm:

    In the interest of honesty and accuracy Illinois does not have the most school districts of any state. Texas has nearly 1,000 districts. If IPI can’t get this right what does it say about the rest of their info? Come on man…..


  31. - ArchPundit - Thursday, Apr 10, 14 @ 10:44 pm:

    ===If so, that’s just sheer lunacy by the teachers unions. Khan Academy is a proven operation.

    Okay, what does that mean? Show me a study where the Khan Academy provides the primary educational content for a school virtually and where it is shown to have ‘proven’ results.

    Khan is a good enrichment program–my daughters have utilized it when they are ahead of the rest of the class to keep from being bored. However, that doesn’t mean it should be the basis for a virtual school. Enrichment and an entire curriculum aren’t the same thing.

    ===Virtual schools can provide a real impact on improving education in Illinois and other states. These schools should be supported financially.

    Really. Show me the studies that demonstrate this. Or are you confusing some virtual education plans with an entire virtual curriculum. Where do these claims even come from that virtual schools are some magic bullet?

    ===Thank you for the information. I’m just cautious of these ‘bans’ where it turns out to be more for reasons of political ideology than the existence of real problems. I was hoping it was not another case of being a ‘ban’ (see Senator Ira’s causes for examples) trying to ban/restrict something like ‘virtual charters’ just because ‘it’s new’.

    Let’s just try a random idea and hope it works. What a fantastic way to create public policy. I heard this great idea from the grifter down street-let’s throw money at it. Wait, I’ve heard that story before…Gary Indiana…Gary Indiana….It’s kind of catchy.

    Here’s what you do–you do an actual study of the methodology involved in the curriculum before you hand a bunch of grifters money to try it out.

    Online education can be very useful, but especially at the primary and secondary level as enrichment or in blended settings. Even in post-secondary education we are moving towards blended settings. We do that based on evidence and not some random idea that a right wing think tank thinks is awesome because their funders tell them to think that.

    == You’d think an IPI guy would want to go the free enterprise route, rather than feed at the public trough.

    No, no you wouldn’t. Not if you have been paying attention.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* Reader comments closed for the holiday weekend
* Can't anybody play this game?
* Radogno: Pass the grand bargain by the end of this month or forget it
* Question of the day
* CMS warns comptroller over draining special funds
* *** UPDATED x3 *** ISBE to vote on settling Urban League school funding lawsuit
* *** UPDATED x1 - FY18 bills filed *** Get out your checkbook, Mr. Mayor
* Midway contract criticized
* Bob Michel passes away
* Another day, another Rauner campaign ad
* Clearing up a little confusion
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Madigan orders committee to take up Thompson Center sale issue
* Yesterday's stories

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............
<


Loading


* Bustos will remain in Congress after considerin.....
* Evanston stands to lose funds under proposed st.....
* Proposed bill would use money from emergency ca.....
* Illinois schools adapting to new 'asthma emerge.....


* Groups, individuals helping white extremists shed hate
* EXCHANGE: Cervical cancer survivor pushing for screening
* Illinois State University seeks public input on its future
* Thousands of demonstrators across US say 'Not My President'
* UIS provides shuttle between campus, downtown Springfield
* Deadline looms for Dakota Access pipeline protest camp
* Illinois schools adapting to new 'asthma emergency' law
* No charges against student who distributed racist pamphlets
* United aircraft blows tires before takeoff from O'Hare
* Hundreds protest Trump at Chicago 'Not My President' rally

* AFSCME strike authorization vote outcome to be revealed this week
* Cheri Bustos won't run for Illinois governor
* Illinois bill would rein in pro athletes' worker comp claims
* GOP criticizes Illinois comptroller for buying used $32K SUV
* Effort to privatize economic development questioned
* State budget impasse still hurting schools
* DHS moving into former Barney's Furniture store
* Madigan says House will consider sale of Thompson Center
* Bustos, other Dems demand Rauner pay domestic violence money
* State budget gap could be more than $7 billion

* Kraft Heinz withdraws $143 billion Unilever bid
* Like our roundup? Share it around.
* The 50 priciest​ home sales of 2016 are here
* Rauner finally weighs in on budget to Capitol laughter and groans
* Springfield's incapacity a threat to all small businesses, including mine


* Police investigate break-in at Portage Park car dealership
* Apartment fire leaves Westmont building uninhabitable
* No injuries reported in fire that destroyed 2 Naperville homes
* No injuries reported after barricade situation in Austin
* Man shot in vestibule of Gresham building
* Dear Abby: He keeps insulting wife about her past
* Georgia Nicols horoscopes for Feb. 21, 2017
* 17-year-old boy shot in Hermosa
* Man critical after Rosemoor shooting
* Police: Man shot dead in Altgeld Gardens


* Petcoke piles gone, but another dangerous pollutant discovered in the air
* Woodlawn sees another chance at revival in Obama library
* Sanctuary movement: Houses of worship consider offering refuge to immigrants
* Morning Spin: Does Illinois' official seal get the state's birthday wrong?
* 1 killed, 8 wounded in shooting attacks in Chicago
* Man threatening suicide in South Austin prompts SWAT response
* Police standoff ends on Far South Side
* Obama library: Latest stories, photos, commentary
* Boys basketball bits: No easy choice for No. 1
* Trump taps Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster as national security adviser


» Hundreds Protest Trump At Chicago 'Not My President' Rally
» Report: Chicago's African-American Men More Likely To Be Unemployed, Undereducated
» Citizenship Ceremony Held For 25 People At City Hall
» With Eye On Farmers Markets, Lawmakers Target Regulations
» Chicago Aldermen Consider Crackdown On Street Performers
» Gary’s Disappearing Public Schools
» Why Was Rauner Budget Proposal Greeted With Confusion?
» Syrian Family Reunites Three Weeks After Travel Ban
» Man Charged In Shooting Death Of Chicago Toddler
» State Week: 'Balanced' Is In The Eye Of The Beholder


* Their View: Editorial: Remembering Bob Michel
* Kathleen Parker: Meet Rick. Meet the football. Hike!
* AFSCME strike authorization vote outcome to be revealed this week
* Cheri Bustos won't run for Illinois governor
* Illinois bill would rein in pro athletes' worker comp claims
* Their View: Why aren't Illinoisans blocking traffic in front of their Capitol?
* GOP criticizes Illinois comptroller for buying used $32K SUV
* Bernard Schoenburg: Dems eye Rodney Davis, who expects the challenge
* Effort to privatize economic development questioned
* Bernard Schoenburg: Dems eye Davis, who expects the challenge


* Grandview man dies in weekend motorcycle crash near Muscatine
* Rick's Six: Great weather, 3rd trial for Liggins, and Bustos not a candidate
* Commentary: The world is laughing at America
* Take center stage in Oscar Wilde classic
* Motorcyclist killed in accident was family man preparing to retire
* Restaurant owner’s newest now abierto (open)
* ‘Scandal’ a stretch, but SUV purchase doesn’t really say ‘priority’
* Commentary: The horror of waiting for the ICE agents to come knocking
* Gas prices fall, but still top last year
* Photo: Winging it


* Coyotes score 3 in 1st period, hold on to beat Ducks
* Dawn Patrol: Opponents of homeless plan speak out
* Constable: Mattresses rarely made presidents' day
* 'Ghost Adventures' host recalls suburban paranormal experiences
* Construction on Glen Ellyn police station ahead of schedule

* US Representative Randy Hultgren visits ne...
* Hultgren guides STEM scholars through pres...
* Hultgren criticizes immigration ban, Roska...
* Group upset with Trump wants Town Hall mee...
* Hultgren updates work on heroin, opioid ab...
* McHenry County Progressives meeting featur...
* US Rep. Randy Hultgren talks veterans' iss...
* US Rep. Randy Hultgren reflects on busines...
* Some Republican Congressmen Reject Trump's...
* GOP congressman appears to distance himsel...

* Durbin breaks silence on Trump's travel ba......

* Dem Sen Duckworth: 'This Is Not the Presid......

* Trayvon Martin’s parents on their book Rest in Power, Brown Girls premiere, and more things to do in Chicago this week
* Hundreds gather for ‘Not My President’ rally outside Trump Tower, and other Chicago news
* My Chocolate Soul Finds Its Home On Broadway
* Construction Updates On Maryville (Now "811 Uptown") Online
* SportsMonday: Now It's Northwestern's Turn
* Cheerleading's Peculiar Path To Olympic Sport
* Ill. '18 gubernatorial dreamer pool starting to winnow itself down to size
* Bit Bash's Filthy Pixels, Taco Fest 2017, and more things to do in Chicago this week
* Chicagoetry: Lope
* The Weekend In Chicago Rock


* Governor Takes Bill Action
* 2017 Budget Address
* Rauner, Lawmakers Move to Protect Taxpayers from Inmate Legal Bills
* Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs Announcednew pilot program titled Tiny Boots
* Governor Rauner Attends Illinois National Guard Deployment Ceremony

  
* Overcast 3 Update Brings Redesigned UI to Podcast Player App
* Meitu’s new phone includes a dual pixel front camera and AI-powered beautification
* Tag Heuer Connected Modular smartwatch with Android Wear 2.0 could land in March after all
* Xiaomi will release even more mid-rangers and high-enders this year, Pinecone SoC coming this month
* Amazon Fire TV Stick With Built-In Alexa Coming to the U.K.
* New 2GB Verizon prepaid plan takes place of deprecated 3GB plan
* LG G6 yet again teased with waterproof design, fingerprint scanner, and yes, full-metal body

* This is not a typo: Soto throws to Soto during BP
* Garcia driven to reclaim outfield spot
* Garcia driven to reclaim outfield spot
* Bourjos enticed to White Sox by weather, opportunity
* Bourjos enticed to White Sox by opportunity, locale
* Renteria expects bright future for White Sox
* Top pick Burdi White Sox closer of future?


Main Menu
Home
Illinois
YouTube
Pundit rankings
Obama
Subscriber Content
Durbin
Burris
Blagojevich Trial
Advertising
Updated Posts
Polls

Archives
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005

Syndication

RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0
WordPress




Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller