Former Teacher to Lead Fight against All-day Kindergarten
By Ed Vogel
Review-Journal Capital Bureau
February 19, 2007

CARSON CITY — Former teacher Joe Enge is about to become a thorn in the side of Assembly Speaker Barbara Buckley, D-Las Vegas, and anyone else who wants the Legislature to require full-day kindergarten classes in every Nevada elementary school.

“Why spend $186 million on a program that has a limited and only a short-term effect?” said Enge, a conservative education reformer from Carson City who grew up a fan of Ronald Reagan. “At that age, kids can handle only so much and retain it. Kids need to be with their families. It is critical for a 5-year-old to bond with the mother.” Read more

I read the R-J this morning and saw the article featuring your position on all-day kindergarten. Your views coincide with mine, and I have been writing legislators about it since before this year’s session. I have attached my letter to them for your info.

The real problem, of course, is not education, per se; it is a problem in society whereby parents do not exercise their responsibilities, and the school system aids and abets this irresponsibility by instituting programs such as all-day kindergarten. In middle school and beyond, teachers are unable to maintain discipline and adhere to standards because the parents, as well as the school administration, are not supportive of the teachers’ efforts and will not take a firm stand. Read more

Frustration and wrath were demonstrated by Assembly speaker Buckley, Assemblywoman Smith, and Senator Titus when Dr. Richard Phelps and I pointed out the fatal flaws of the APA Education Adequacy Study Wednesday morning.

Nevada taxpayers paid a Colorado consultant $225,000 for a study that used questionable methods to determine an inflated conclusion; Nevada was short $1.3 billion for “adequate spending” in the 2003-2004 school year and a great deal more would be needed to become “adequate” in successive years. Read more

(Source: Milton & Rose Friedman Foundation Press Release 2-12-07)
Gov. Huntsman signs Utah’s universal school voucher bill

First program in nation to achieve Milton Friedman’s vision

INDIANAPOLIS—Today, Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, Jr. signed the nation’s first ever universal school voucher program into law. The program will allow nearly every family in the state to have a choice in their child’s education, becoming the first program to achieve Nobel laureate economist Milton Friedman’s vision for universal school choice. Read more

(Reprint of Sen. Bob Beers 2-12-07 Newsletter)
Last week, the Las Vegas Review Journal reported that the Clark County School District has “proven” the effectiveness of all day kindergarten with a “longitudinal” study that found reading aptitude was 3% higher amongst children. If they took out the results of the non “at-risk” children, and just looked at “at-risk” children, the improvement was 8%.

What, then, was the percentage improvement amongst non “at-risk” children? Beers asked the Legislative Counsel Bureau staff to ask the Clark County School District. Read more

The Nevada Senate Committee on Human Resources and Education heard testimony Monday in Carson City that the Clark County School District has left the state holding the bag for “at least” $5.7 million for incorrectly billed Medicaid charges in 2003-2004. There may be more in question for the period following. Charles Duarte, Administrator for the Division of Health Care Financing and Policy, testified CCSD did not follow the plan by making inappropriate charges, which included debt service on capital projects when asked by Sen. Cegavske if the charges were fraudulent.

While Duarte did not say it was fraudulence, he did leave the impression of gross incompetence among the CCSD staff responsible. The CCSD spokesperson explained it happened before his time and they followed the Medicaid billing procedures as they understood them. The spokesperson said the responsible staff members were removed from their positions, but admitted to Sen. Cegavske in her follow up question they still work for the district.

The state of Nevada will have to make up the shortfall with the federal government until the CCSD figures out how to pay back the money. The school district claims it now “has a handle” on what Medicaid charges are and are not allowable.

(Source: Bob Beers Blog
Sen. Beers exposed the myth of Nevada spending the least amount for education to a voter in his reply below:

Good news, Diane! We are, in fact, not among the lowest states in our nation in education funding! That is fiction perpetrated by our professional educrat community (coincidentally, paid above the national average for educators and administrators, and well above our surrounding states), who claim we are amongst the lowest in operating costs per student. They accomplish this by having their accountants misclassify a chunk of operating funds as capital funds (in educrat talk, it’s actually “non-current” funding). Since you’re a CPA, you’ll understand this allegory: if you misclassified your current assets as long-term assets, you’ll drive your current ratio into the basement, but still have a business that is plenty liquid.

The National Center for Education Statistics, run by the US Dept. of Education, can’t be buffaloed as easily as parents who don’t have the time to untangle our educrat’s deceptive rhetoric. They rank us around 35th of 51 states in education funding.

• Startling Conclusions of Rand Study
• It’s Not About the Statistics & Reports?

Startling Conclusions of Rand Study
Chuck Muth and Jim Clark have made reference to the 2006 Rand study refuting the benefits of All-Day K. Not only does the Rand study School Readiness, Full-Day Kindergarten, and Student Achievement: An Empirical Investigation confirms the benefits of All-Day K evaporate, but may even produce negative behaviors and mathematics performance. Its summary states: Read more

Clark County School District released Monday their “study results” for All-Day K. This highly regarded bastion of academic analysis surprised no one by releasing figures the same day as the start of the 2007 Legislative Session that support their very political and self-serving contention. I don’t think they could have been more transparently biased and obvious if they tried. All one has to do to analyze their assessment information is to ask two simple questions. Who wants the money and who did the study? Read more

• Is Speaker Buckley Sexist?
• Titus & I Agree
• Las Vegas KVBC Airs Interview
• What a Deal

Is Buckley Sexist?
Assemblywoman Barbara Buckley said after being made speaker of the Assembly in a local interview to News Carson City that, “Women legislators do tend to focus more on education, healthcare, day to day issues because that’s reflective of their day to day lives when not in session.” So does that mean men tend to not focus or even care about education, healthcare and are focused on irrelevant issues? In other words men are out of touch.

If a male public figure made such a blatantly sexist statement to the press, he would be put in the stocks in front of the Legislative Building facing Carson Street and forced to take hours of sensitivity and diversity training. You would think Nevada’s first female speaker of the Assembly would know better than to stereotype men as inattentive. Then again most men missed it as they were not listening while reading the paper on the couch. Read more