ConnCAN yelps response to Sarah Darer Littman’s Commentary piece

Provides stunning argument as to why Malloy does not deserve four more years! Over this past weekend, public education advocate and CT NewsJunkie columnist Sarah Darer Littman published a scathing commentary piece on the Malloy administration, the disgraced Jumoke/FUSE charter school chain and the tens of millions of taxpayer funds being wasted on charter schools in Connecticut. You can read Sarah Darer Littman’s CTNewsJunkie column here – Don’t Let Foundation Money Be A Trojan Horse and the Wait, What? re-post and assessment of the piece here Another MUST READ column on Jumoke/FUSE by Sarah Darer Littman. But as incredible as Sarah Darer Littman’s original piece is, the response from the CEO of ConnCAN, the charter school advocacy group, is even more telling. Wait, What? readers will recall that ConnCAN led the $6 million, record breaking, lobbying effort on behalf of Governor Dannel “Dan” Malloy’s corporate education reform bill that undermined local control and attempted to do away with tenure for all public school teachers, while repealing collective bargaining for teachers working in the poorest school districts. ConnCAN also played a pivotal role in the failed attempt to do away with an elected board of education in Bridgeport, their campaign becoming the most expensive charter revision effort in history. And more recently, ConnCAN’s Board of Directors, and their immediate family members, have funneled more than $100,000 into Malloy’s re-election campaign operation — despite the fact that Malloy has taken $6.2 million in public funds to pay for his re-election effort. Normally, when presenting an attack piece by the corporate education reform industry, some critique is required, but not in this case. In this case, the response from Jennifer Alexander, ConnCAN’s CEO, is so absurd that it stands on its own without any introduction or review… You can read ConnCAN’s full response here: Alexander writes,

Regarding Sarah Darer Littman’s Sept. 19, 2014, op-ed, “Don’t Let Foundation Money Be A Trojan Horse,” the egregious twisting of facts and history buries the important message at the core of Littman’s argument. Sadly, the piece is also a distraction from the real issue at hand, which is improving schools for all children in our state. […] I encourage her to join a real dialogue about how best to achieve these goals. It’s time to move away from tired personal attacks and unfounded conspiracy theories, roll up our sleeves and get to the real work of improving public education. Our kids are counting on it. It is, after all, our responsibility to ensure all kids have the opportunity to achieve their goals. Together, with hard work, dedication, and a bit of creativity, we can ensure Connecticut remains a place where people want to live, work, and invest in their future.

This from the individual and organization that recently sang the praises of Jumoke/FUSE and the man formerly known as “Dr.” Michael Sharpe.  Not to mention their unending efforts to divert taxpayer funds to privately run schools that consistently discriminate against those who don’t speak English and those who need special education services. The message from ConnCAN is loud and clear…..their message is – If you are satisfied with Malloy’s corporate education reform policies, then go ahead and vote for him. If, on the other hand, you are tired of charter schools wasting millions of dollars of our scarce public funds, then Malloy is definitely not the one you want to vote for. Paid for by Pelto 2014, Ted Strelez, Treasurer, Christine Ladd, Deputy Treasurer, Approved by Jonathan Pelto

  • Linda174

    Most Comments to the piece written for Alexander do not support her warped view backed with no facts or evidence. Time to Riccards Alexander, evidently Conncan can’t.

  • Linda174

    And more:

  • Linda174

    Jen admired Sharpe. He was useful until….

  • Mary Gallucci

    Really? The charter-school shill who personally recommended Michael Sharpe, the Jumoke model, and the charter management organization FUSE is now castigating Sarah Darer-LIttman for her well-written and meticulously researched article?
    Jennifer Alexander not only helped shepherd the original Booker T. Washington charter school partnership with FUSE to its stunning and unanimous acceptance by the State Board of Education–garnered in large part *because* the charter school was going to replicate the “successful” (cough, cough) “Jumoke model” by means of the *successful” and visionary leadership of Michael Sharpe and his various family members, colleagues, hand-picked contractors, etc.–she also testified before the SBE and wrote numerous bogus op-eds to this effect.
    I cannot understand why a paid promoter of charter schools gets to place so many op-eds all over the state, spewing the same lies about charter schools and about ConnCAN’s supposed concern for poor children of color.
    How offensive. CT News Junkie should be ashamed. A disclaimer is not enough. Jennifer Alexander is a lobbyist.

  • buygoldandprosper
    • Fed Up in CT

      No he won’t. Danny’s on their side, having been fully bought by the charter school billionaire founders since elected in 2010. And Foley will also be in bed with them, big time, though he doesn’t need their money ’cause he’s got his own stash.

      Charter school parasites and the blood-sucking billionaires behind it all — these are THE REAL BEDBUGS OF CT! (Worthy of their own TV farce, but certainly not worthy of our votes in Nov.)

      • skygirl

        I believe Foley at least said there was no reason for well performing school districts to have to go through the same crap as underperforming ones. Not sure if that’s true though.

        • Mary Gallucci

          Would it make you feel better? Worse schools for the poor? More test prep? Greater segregation? Then he’s your great white hope.

        • R.L.

          Sounds like you’re describing Malloy to a tee.

  • msavagee

    First of all, as one commenter on CTNJ pointed out, Alexander doesn’t even address the issues that Sarah brings up. Sarah’s piece is about Gates money, Jumoke, Sharpe, etc. Alexander isn’t even intelligent enough to compose a response to the issues–she just spouts off the same mindless drivel. Blah, blah, improving education for all children in our state, blah, blah, give all kids the opportunity to achieve their goals. Yeah, we get it–we’ve heard it a thousand times from dozens of different people. As Mary said below, you’re nothing but a lobbyist, Jennifer Alexander.

  • jrp1900

    The mentality displayed by Jennifer Alexander is somewhat disturbing. She does not trouble herself to refute ANY of Ms Litman’s central argument. Instead she trots out the tired old platitude of the reformers that it’s all about “improving public education,” as public schools are privatized, private companies get richer and poor children are still underserved.

    It’s obvious that Ms Alexander has no facts at her disposal to refute anything Ms Litman wrote. Indeed, it is quite likely that the charter school shenanigans are worse than Ms Litman claimed. We are now getting a clearer picture of what went down at FUSE and Jumoke, and it is not very pretty. Michael Sharpe had a $12,000 bathroom remodeling done in his FUSE-owned apartment–at the taxpayer’s expense. One wonders what does this kind of expense have to do with the education of poor children. Mr. Sharpe was living very well and the children at Milner were still lacking basic resources. If Jennifer Alexander had any integrity she would be pondering how she came to support Michael Sharpe in his wheeling and dealing. And she should ask herself: is there something wrong with the charter school movement that millions of dollars given by the State to companies like FUSE do not get spent on living, breathing children, but end up in real estate schemes, conflict-of-interest business deals and the like? But Jennifer Alexander would prefer not to think of these hard matters. So, instead she throws mud at an honest reporter like Sarah Darer Litman.

    Jennifer Alexander, in her bland indifference to the truth, shows all the characteristics of a cultist– a person who believes because they believe…

    • msavage

      Good point, JRP–maybe not just a lack of intelligence sufficient to confront an intelligent argument such as Ms. Darer Littman’s–maybe something else at work here. Some kind of mental disconnect.. An ability to gloss over the hundreds of thousands of misdirected dollars a la FUSE/Sharpe and launch right into the familiar argument suggests as much.

      • R.L.

        You’re giving her too much credit. Maybe Alexander is just in on the scam. Greed = mental disconnect.

        • speaking up

          “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.” — Upton Sinclair

    • cindy

      We need to get these people out before they find a way to make up the facts they need.

  • buygoldandprosper

    I don’t care…it looks like a Greenwich Aryan Nation commercial, but he is still better than Danny:

    Write in Pelto or vote for LazyBoy. whatever makes on sleep at night…

    • Mary Gallucci

      Pass the airsick bag.

    • Mary Gallucci

      Tom Foley thinks he’s Sarah Palin–Papa Grizzly with his telegenic family.

  • realsaramerica

    I graded Jen Alexander’s op-ed as I would one of my MFA students. She didn’t do well:

  • buygoldandprosper

    Another Malloy official in trouble…one day, if we are lucky, Danny will be facing charges of some sort.

    “Victor Diaz, 36, the former deputy commissioner of the state Department of Motor Vehicles and former president of the city’s chapter of the NAACP, was arrested Tuesday on sexual assault charges.
    Diaz is being held on a $1 million bond.
    Police say the charges relate to sexual assaults reported on a minor earlier this month.
    Diaz abruptly resigned from his position at the DMV Sept. 9.
    Diaz was arraigned Tuesday.
    Scot X. Esdaile, state president of the NAACP, declined comment Tuesday.
    Diaz and his cabinet had been removed from their leadership positions in the NAACP years ago when the state office took over the city’s troubled branch a year ago.”

  • buygoldandprosper

    Speaking of the air sickness bag!
    Why is it every time the man is up for election he reminds us of what a slow leaner he is? Are voters really that stupid now?
    Vote for Danny Malloy at your own risk…

    • buygoldandprosper

      This ad was bought by…NYC and California and “other” money…

    • R.L.

      He’s hoping that we’re slow learners as well.