Author Topic: Coronavirus news  (Read 337940 times)

Dave Benke

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3840 on: June 04, 2021, 08:59:34 PM »

More's the pity that the LCMS determined to shut its housing corporation down

Dave Benke

I didn't know that. What happened anyway?

Peace, JOHN

It was deemed by LCMS Inc. not to be viable.  Superior exec and staff, a board absolutely dedicated to affordable housing to be developed through congregations and consortia.  Deemed not to be viable.

Dave Benke

Jeremy Loesch

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3841 on: June 04, 2021, 10:03:05 PM »
Andrew Yang will be the next mayor of NYC.  I'm sure you'll be able to work with him.   

Jeremy
A Lutheran pastor growing into all sorts of things.

Dan Fienen

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3842 on: June 04, 2021, 10:18:32 PM »
Speaking of the race for the next New York City mayor, I just read an article stating that Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers is "incredibly disappointed" that one of the leading mayoral candidates for NYC mayor, Kathryn Garcia has expressed support for lifting the city's cap on charter schools. A cap that current mayor Bill de Blasio apparently strongly supports.


According to 2019 figures, less than half of public school students in NYC can read or do math at grade level. Doesn't that mean that something isn't working in the NYC public school system? I'm not an expert on schooling and certainly not on NYC. Perhaps one of our resident experts on NYC, Pr. Benke or Pr. Austin could give us their take on whether or not charter schools can be a helpful tool in improving the education of the children of NYC? I don't know enough about the public schools there or charter schools to have an informed opinion. Are charter schools a scam to siphon off education dollars without helping the students who need the most help?
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Dave Benke

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3843 on: June 05, 2021, 08:35:57 AM »
Speaking of the race for the next New York City mayor, I just read an article stating that Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers is "incredibly disappointed" that one of the leading mayoral candidates for NYC mayor, Kathryn Garcia has expressed support for lifting the city's cap on charter schools. A cap that current mayor Bill de Blasio apparently strongly supports.


According to 2019 figures, less than half of public school students in NYC can read or do math at grade level. Doesn't that mean that something isn't working in the NYC public school system? I'm not an expert on schooling and certainly not on NYC. Perhaps one of our resident experts on NYC, Pr. Benke or Pr. Austin could give us their take on whether or not charter schools can be a helpful tool in improving the education of the children of NYC? I don't know enough about the public schools there or charter schools to have an informed opinion. Are charter schools a scam to siphon off education dollars without helping the students who need the most help?

Our area in Brooklyn is awash in charter schools.  And for the most part that's a good thing.  What the charter schools bring is competition to the public system, particularly in under-performing  communities.  The charter can also rent space in existing public schools, which brings the competition right into the building.  Because the AFT does not unionize the charters - some of them are unionized, some not - they're crabby. 

But the charters here in NY at least are
a) not parochial, that is, the charter isn't granted with permission to teach religion.  I think that's the same nationwide. 
b) can use the site to have "wrap-around" programs early in the morning and late into the day where religion can be taught, so could have a parochial component (I think this is true in charters in St. Louis, Milwaukee and Arizona, for three)
c) are chartered for a period of time - 5 years in NY - and evaluated by results in terms of re-certification, which is a distinct accountability feature, albeit a potential "teach to the test" issue
d) student-portable, so a charter in Cypress Hills Brooklyn may have a student base from Bed-Stuy who were recruited from 7 miles away.  Public schools are not given that option, are neighborhood-based, so
e) can do possibly a little more cherry-picking.  Public schools have to take what's there, period.
St. Peter's kids through the years have opted for charters or parochial (by now that means Catholic) schools more than public, although for the gifted and talented kids, the best of the best is still public education.  The progressive wing has sought to tear down the specialized gifted and talented schools, which is crazy. 

Dave Benke

John_Hannah

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3844 on: June 05, 2021, 09:02:47 AM »
Speaking of the race for the next New York City mayor, I just read an article stating that Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers is "incredibly disappointed" that one of the leading mayoral candidates for NYC mayor, Kathryn Garcia has expressed support for lifting the city's cap on charter schools. A cap that current mayor Bill de Blasio apparently strongly supports.


According to 2019 figures, less than half of public school students in NYC can read or do math at grade level. Doesn't that mean that something isn't working in the NYC public school system? I'm not an expert on schooling and certainly not on NYC. Perhaps one of our resident experts on NYC, Pr. Benke or Pr. Austin could give us their take on whether or not charter schools can be a helpful tool in improving the education of the children of NYC? I don't know enough about the public schools there or charter schools to have an informed opinion. Are charter schools a scam to siphon off education dollars without helping the students who need the most help?

Our area in Brooklyn is awash in charter schools.  And for the most part that's a good thing.  What the charter schools bring is competition to the public system, particularly in under-performing  communities.  The charter can also rent space in existing public schools, which brings the competition right into the building.  Because the AFT does not unionize the charters - some of them are unionized, some not - they're crabby. 

But the charters here in NY at least are
a) not parochial, that is, the charter isn't granted with permission to teach religion.  I think that's the same nationwide. 
b) can use the site to have "wrap-around" programs early in the morning and late into the day where religion can be taught, so could have a parochial component (I think this is true in charters in St. Louis, Milwaukee and Arizona, for three)
c) are chartered for a period of time - 5 years in NY - and evaluated by results in terms of re-certification, which is a distinct accountability feature, albeit a potential "teach to the test" issue
d) student-portable, so a charter in Cypress Hills Brooklyn may have a student base from Bed-Stuy who were recruited from 7 miles away.  Public schools are not given that option, are neighborhood-based, so
e) can do possibly a little more cherry-picking.  Public schools have to take what's there, period.
St. Peter's kids through the years have opted for charters or parochial (by now that means Catholic) schools more than public, although for the gifted and talented kids, the best of the best is still public education.  The progressive wing has sought to tear down the specialized gifted and talented schools, which is crazy. 

Dave Benke

I agree with Dave. Same viewpoint from the Bronx.   ;D

Peace, JOHN
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

James S. Rustad

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3845 on: June 05, 2021, 12:53:00 PM »
An unexpected benefit of the coronavirus pandemic - some strains of influenza may have gone extinct.

https://www.npr.org/2021/06/03/1003020235/certain-strains-of-flu-may-have-gone-extinct-because-of-pandemic-safety-measures

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3846 on: June 05, 2021, 12:55:57 PM »
Speaking of the race for the next New York City mayor, I just read an article stating that Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers is "incredibly disappointed" that one of the leading mayoral candidates for NYC mayor, Kathryn Garcia has expressed support for lifting the city's cap on charter schools. A cap that current mayor Bill de Blasio apparently strongly supports.


According to 2019 figures, less than half of public school students in NYC can read or do math at grade level. Doesn't that mean that something isn't working in the NYC public school system? I'm not an expert on schooling and certainly not on NYC. Perhaps one of our resident experts on NYC, Pr. Benke or Pr. Austin could give us their take on whether or not charter schools can be a helpful tool in improving the education of the children of NYC? I don't know enough about the public schools there or charter schools to have an informed opinion. Are charter schools a scam to siphon off education dollars without helping the students who need the most help?

Our area in Brooklyn is awash in charter schools.  And for the most part that's a good thing.  What the charter schools bring is competition to the public system, particularly in under-performing  communities.  The charter can also rent space in existing public schools, which brings the competition right into the building.  Because the AFT does not unionize the charters - some of them are unionized, some not - they're crabby. 

But the charters here in NY at least are
a) not parochial, that is, the charter isn't granted with permission to teach religion.  I think that's the same nationwide. 
b) can use the site to have "wrap-around" programs early in the morning and late into the day where religion can be taught, so could have a parochial component (I think this is true in charters in St. Louis, Milwaukee and Arizona, for three)
c) are chartered for a period of time - 5 years in NY - and evaluated by results in terms of re-certification, which is a distinct accountability feature, albeit a potential "teach to the test" issue
d) student-portable, so a charter in Cypress Hills Brooklyn may have a student base from Bed-Stuy who were recruited from 7 miles away.  Public schools are not given that option, are neighborhood-based, so
e) can do possibly a little more cherry-picking.  Public schools have to take what's there, period.
St. Peter's kids through the years have opted for charters or parochial (by now that means Catholic) schools more than public, although for the gifted and talented kids, the best of the best is still public education.  The progressive wing has sought to tear down the specialized gifted and talented schools, which is crazy. 


One of the issues about charter schools in Arizona is that they do not have to have certified teachers (and they pay their teachers less). One charter high school offered all their classes online, the "teachers," in the school were primarily to help the students if they had difficulties getting connected to the online class.


Charter schools do not offer ESL courses, so the new, immigrant youth are excluded. They do not offer special education class, so that group of students are excluded. By pulling some of the best students out of the public school system, that decreases the revenue those schools receive from the state. It results in the public school having the more expensive students (those needed ESL or special ed) with fewer funds to provide for them.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Dave Likeness

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3847 on: June 05, 2021, 02:02:24 PM »
The public school system in many urban areas needs to have competition from Roman Catholic,
Lutheran, and other religious schools   Competition can also come from charter schools, and
home-schooled families. The voucher system in some states allows for parents to choose the
school their children will attend. Yes, competition is good  because it forces everyone to pursue
better educational standards.  Children should be able to get a first class education regardless
of their zip code.

DeHall1

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3848 on: June 05, 2021, 02:10:15 PM »
One of the issues about charter schools in Arizona is that they do not have to have certified teachers (and they pay their teachers less). One charter high school offered all their classes online, the "teachers," in the school were primarily to help the students if they had difficulties getting connected to the online class.


Charter schools do not offer ESL courses, so the new, immigrant youth are excluded. They do not offer special education class, so that group of students are excluded. By pulling some of the best students out of the public school system, that decreases the revenue those schools receive from the state. It results in the public school having the more expensive students (those needed ESL or special ed) with fewer funds to provide for them.
I just checked 3 random Charter schools here in the Kansas City area.  The ones that post their staff on their website (one doesn’t) have ESL teachers.  All teachers appear to be certified, and most have post-graduate degrees.

Of course, the KC Missouri* public school system is....not that great.  They lost accreditation in 2000 (the first school system ever to do so), and have struggled with accreditation since- gaining and losing provisional accreditation multiple times.  I know the expectation was that they would lose it again in 2020.

I can see why parents would choose Charter (or private) schools over the public school system here.

*Sorry- took it for granted you all knew I was referring to the KCMO public school system. 
« Last Edit: June 05, 2021, 02:26:31 PM by DeHall1 »

Dan Fienen

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3849 on: June 05, 2021, 02:46:07 PM »
I personally have no dog in this hunt. My son long ago left the halls of academe, and I have no grandchildren entering. I no longer pastor a congregation with a school and don't have a member with school age children. A couple of congregation in my circuit have schools, but that is not my concern.


It sounds to me that this is a complicated topic with no clear definitive answers. Some public education systems and especially some public schools do an excellent job of educating children. I dare say that there are excellent teachers in all schools as well as mediocre teachers, at best. Some public education systems, for whatever reasons fall down on their task and ill serve their communities and the children entrusted into their care.


The idea of alternative schooling as competition to spur public schools to strive for excellence and as an escape from failing schools sounds like a good idea. Monopolies of any sort unless carefully monitored and regulated often become expensive and complacent settling to get by because there is little competition and little incentive to do more than just get by. They are the only game. Public education can do that. Teachers unions can be a needed, even necessary voice advocating for teachers and the children they teach. Or they can become an entrenched special interest group protecting their own interests at the expense of those they serve. Protecting teachers from unjust criticism and retaliation can become protecting members at all costs.


I have some personal experience with parochial schooling. They generally did better than public schools. Part but I don't think all of that may be because they can cherry pick their students, farm out the special education needs, be able to more easily remove disruptive students, and have religiously motivated and dedicated teachers. They also in general have parents that are more involved in their children's education than may be the average in public schools. That involvement is a major predictor of educational success. I saw a 60 Minutes segment on the schools on Army bases. They were said to be generally very successful. One factor in that success was that the parents' bosses (Army brass) would order them to be involved in their children's schooling. An option not generally available to typical public schools.


Good education is most likely a major factor if we wish to break cycles of generational poverty, failed families, and criminality. I suspect that whether or not things like charter schools can improve community education depends on a lot of factors including the rules under which such schools are formed and operated, and the quality of the public school system in that area. One size will not fit all.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2021, 03:50:11 PM by Dan Fienen »
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Dave Benke

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3850 on: June 05, 2021, 06:41:00 PM »
It's an interesting discussion because if you check out best high schools in the country, for example, the weight is toward charter schools in Arizona.  So there's some cherry picking going on there if those with language differential have a tougher time (if English isn't the first language) getting in/through. 

As to Lutheran and Catholic schools taking up the banner in cities, Dave, there may be 10% of the Lutheran schools in large cities compared to 30 years ago.  And there have been tons of school closings in large cities by the Roman Catholic system as well.  In other words, the trend is completely in the other direction.  The charter schools actually make it far more difficult, because they are tuition-free to the family/parents and are a fair alternative.

So a better answer would be charter schools run by Lutherans, let's say, with wrap-around options for the religious aspect.  The group that has done a lot in that area is the Eagle Charter group, and here's a link to their AZ and Missouri centers.  My last involvement with them back when I ran the world from the Atlantic District podium was that they were WELS folks.  In addition, Grand Canyon University which is specifically Christian was founded by a (former?) Missouri Synod rostered teacher. 

The incredible emphasis inside the LCMS toward ordination as the route to school leadership propelled some of our non-ordained besties out into worlds separate from their home denomination.  And the world's a better place for it.  But we could and should learn more from them.

Dave Benke

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3851 on: June 05, 2021, 07:48:49 PM »
The public school system in many urban areas needs to have competition from Roman Catholic,
Lutheran, and other religious schools   Competition can also come from charter schools, and
home-schooled families. The voucher system in some states allows for parents to choose the
school their children will attend. Yes, competition is good  because it forces everyone to pursue
better educational standards.  Children should be able to get a first class education regardless
of their zip code.


Yes, competition is good - if it is a fair competition. An issue I remember from my Wyoming days was whether or not the school districts in wealthy counties (those that had mines) needed to share their wealth with the districts in poorer counties to create more equalized education opportunities throughout the state.


Hmmm, the question just came to me: Does competition among churches create better congregations? Is the competition among congregations always fair? (I'm thinking of one congregation (not Lutheran) whose members went door to door to convince people that their congregations were wrong. Pastors from different denominations complained about how they had lost members to that one congregation by their tactics.)


While it's a different topic, one thing we would do in some of the ministerial groups I was in was to talk about members when they began attending a different church and assure one another that we were not out to "steal sheep."


Hmmm, another thought: could congregations offer signing bonuses if someone wanted to join them like they do in pro-sports?
« Last Edit: June 05, 2021, 07:55:04 PM by Brian Stoffregen »
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3852 on: June 05, 2021, 07:59:02 PM »
Oh, another issue with parochial schools are athletics. My brother officiated football for a number of years in Oregon. The Catholic schools always did very well because they recruited from all over the place to try and get the best players.


The Catholic high school in town has won the state championship. One of our members - a vary large member - attended there to play football.


Does that give them an unfair advantage? Is that what competition should be about?
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Dave Likeness

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3853 on: June 06, 2021, 04:44:08 PM »
In the state of Illinois, we have 4 classifications for boys basketball high school  state tournament
and 8 classifications for boys football high school state tournament.

The Catholic high schools in Chicago and its suburbs are a force to be reckoned with.
They can recruit athletes from across their city boundaries.  They win their share of
state tournaments,  About every 5 years there is a petition to limit the Illinois high
school tournaments to public schools but it never passes.  However, recruitment is
also evident in the public high schools.  The most common ploy is to get the father of
the athlete a good job in their city and it works. 

Bottom Line:  Sports is the Toy Department of Life....... quote from Howard Cosell

James S. Rustad

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Re: Coronavirus news
« Reply #3854 on: June 12, 2021, 01:32:41 PM »
Study shows hydroxychloroquine treatments increased coronavirus survival rate by almost three times