East Falls Local

East Falls for All's!

Category: Schools (Page 1 of 4)

DIG THIS: East Falls Squash Star Rises this Summer

Annnnnd they’re off! Team USA’s left for the 2017 World Junior Championships in New Zealand this July 19 – 29. Big cheers for East Falls’ own Elisabeth Ross (lower left), putting her training to the test across the globe!

Catch updates on USASquash.com, or watch the live feed from Tauranga where the best Junior squash players on the planet match skills & drive for the title of World Champion. Competition is fierce, but so are Fallsers — bring it home, E! We couldn’t be more excited for Elisabeth, making history in a sport that’s so connected to our past.

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Candid Cameras on Career Day

Our first Career Day at Mifflin did not go as planned — but what fun would that have been? We got schooled on social media when the kids turned our cameras on each other.

As bloggers, our goal for our first Career Day wasn’t just to teach the kids about blogging. We also wanted to get a blog post out of it, so we brought every recording device we owned (and one we borrowed!) in the hopes of getting enough pics and videos to showcase our experience.

With the exception of a stationary cell phone/webcam, Mifflin’s kids provide all the content in this post. They filmed and photographed each other, they interviewed each other using some questions we gave them, and also some they made up as they got comfortable talking on camera.

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YOU’RE INVITED: A Reality News Experiment at Mifflin

What do you get when you arm a classroom full of grade school students with cameras and interview questions?  We don’t know either, but this Wednesday we can all find out together when we take Mifflin Career Day to Facebook Live.

What kind of job is blogging? We like to say we’re not journalists but “reality reporters.” That is, we write about our experiences living and working right here in the neighborhood — like our little own East Falls reality show.

Our plan for Mifflin Career Day, then: create a blog post in real time, by interviewing and recording the kids while they interview and record us and each other. While the whole thing is recorded live on Facebook.

And introducing… THE  KID CAM!  

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Love Thy Neighbor

Fun Facts to warm your heart about St. James School in nearby Allegheny — from free community dinners to the most historic “Mannequin challenge” ever. 

(Image from St. James School’s Facebook page)

St. James the Less church and cemetery is a National Historic Landmark — it’s the country’s first pure English Parish-style church, and one of the finest examples of 19th Century American Gothic architecture.

Totally accidental, btw. The congregation here asked their English counterparts for the church plans they’d all discussed and agreed upon. Instead of those, someone sent entirely different plans, whoops.

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3 More Losses of Public Space

Education is not a game, but you’d never know it from the way the SRC played every trick in the book to turn Germantown’s Wister Elementary over to Mastery Charter. Local educator Robin Lowry helps us document & learn from their fight to stay public this year. 

GAME OVER text wister RESIZE POST

It is over.  The fight to keep Wister Elementary public has been lost. Cooke and Huey also lost on April 29th. Regardless of 7 months challenging the SRC’s credibility, use of bogus enrollment and achievement data, conflicts of interest by SRC members, lobbying and bullying by Mastery Charter company, repeated testimony that schools were starved of resources and supports to create a narrative of failure, and the questionable records of the winning charters, the fix was in.

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Kids At Play: An Indoor Gym for All Abilities

Your kid will have a blast at Kids At Play, a fantastic local resource for families with special needs children — or not. This indoor “multi-sensory playground” packs thrills for all skill levels with zip-line, ball pit, swings, slides, and more. Plus, support & education, too. Only in East Falls!

EastFallsLocal Kids at Play collage

For the uninitiated, Kids at Play looks like a McDonald’s play place on steroids. But marketing director Julia Singer Katz explains much more is going on than all the jumping and laughing around us — kids of different abilities are having fun together.

No one knows who has “special needs” or what those might be, everyone is simply enjoying the colorful, exciting space side-by-side. For many families, such normalcy can be a real treat.

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Myth Making in Public Education

Repeat a story often enough and it becomes Gospel. Local educator Robin Lowry lays out for us how public school teachers are taking the heat for a bum system designed to fail in nearby Germantown. 

In K-12 Ed, privatization-for-profit measures are often comically lauded as educational breakthroughs.  These “research-based” strategies are hailed one year, only to be scrapped the next.

Teachers view such Reforms like  The Emperor’s New Clothes:  “Yes, your Highness what a fantastic coat!” Cause, wow, is New Math ever amazing.  And Block Scheduling — oooh, so modern, how did we live without it? Ha.

Of all the stupid Education myths pushed by politicians, though, the worst by far:

“Charters are beating the pants off us Public Schools!”

Uh, don’t think so. Not even close.

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Waiting & Wondering at Wister

What’s going on with the staff at Wister? For Robin Lowry, it’s like Sitting in Limbo… 

Welp. We don’t know where we’ll be next year. Wister? A new school? Quit? Go into Forestry?  (That’s what I dream of on a bad day.)

The District walked back it’s decision to keep Wister “District controlled.” Mastery now gets to put in an application.  Only Mastery even bid — no surprise to anyone living in Germantown.  Parents on the Evaluation Committee didn’t like what they saw on the Mastery Tour other than what money could buy: shiny new everything. Parents keep asking why Wister can’t have those resources NOW?  Good question.

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MAILBAG: Did Someone Say Facts? Public vs Charter continues…

A reader emailed us his disappointment that we’d print commentary from a local public school teacher who is fighting against a charter overtake. We disagree that there’s no place for conversation in community news, and present Robin Lowry’s passionate rebuttal with insightful links. 

eastfallslocal rebuttal feature image post

LETTER to the EDITOR (excerpted slightly for brevity)

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Charters Say They’re Public Schools. Are They?

If there’s no difference between charter schools and public schools — why do we make a distinction in name? Charters love to say they’re public, but should we believe them? 

Eastfallslocal collage a closer look at charter schools

The answer is an artful obfuscation. Charters say “yes,” public school supporters say “no.”  This is no clearer example of this than what has happened here in Germantown as the School District of Philadelphia and the SRC infiltrators attempt to privatize Philly schools along the lines of New Orleans schools.

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