Monday, July 27, 2009

Minneapolis board to discuss 'self-governed schools'

The MPS Board meeting on Tuesday, July 28 (6:00 pm at the 807 NE Broadway building) will discuss proposals for four new "self-governed" schools, one of which would like to exist at Edison. Here's an excerpt from an article published today in the Star Tribune about this new initiative:

The Legislature approved "self-governed" or "site-governed" schools this spring, in a bill that drew little notice at the time. Proponents say it could end up being the most important educational reform that Minnesota schools have seen since the 1991 law permitting charter schools.

"It's a big deal," said Jon Schroeder with Education|Evolving, a Minnesota education group promoting the new schools.

Sort of like charter schools, self-governed schools are designed to be innovative. But they don't take per-pupil revenue away from school districts the way charter schools do when students leave for them, and districts have control over the types and numbers of self-governed schools that can be set up within the district.

The full article can be found at the Star Tribune website.

This will impact our NE neighborhood. If possible, try to make it to the meeting. PEN will a part of this conversation.


Sunday, July 26, 2009

Edison Football Team hosts Clinic at Waite Park

Earlier this summer, the Edison football team hosted a clinic for elementary-aged kids at the high school football field. It was a big success, so another clinic has been scheduled. This one will be at Waite Park, and is open to any NE kid who is interested in learing some football skills.

Thursday, July 30 (6:30-8:00) for kids going into 3rd-8th grade.

Hosted by the Edison Football Team. Clinic will be held outside on the football field at Waite Park.

To register e-mail Larry at or call Waite Park Recreation Center at 612-370-4959.



Thursday, July 23, 2009

Dr. Green’s tenure to end June 30, 2010

Minneapolis Public Schools’ Superintendent William Green announced today that he will not seek an extension to his contract beyond June 30, 2010.

Dr. Green chose to inform the Board of Education a year in advance to give members ample time to choose his successor and ensure a smooth transition.

“Serving the Minneapolis Public Schools’ students, staff and community has been one of the greatest honors and I hope you will feel, at the end of my term, that all of our students’ educational experiences have been as enriched as I have been in serving them,” said Dr. Green.

“As a student of history, I have observed that a leader must feel the pulse of time and sense when it is time to begin to make room for a new kind of leadership. If a leader doesn’t sense when the time has come for him to pass the reins on to a different leader, the institution suffers. To do that would go against my commitment to this organization. I love the Minneapolis Public Schools’ family, in all of its richness, diversity, commitment, hard work and potential.”

At the end of his term, Dr. Green plans to return to teaching and writing as a history professor at Augsburg College in Minneapolis. He is a tenured professor and has been on leave from the college while serving as superintendent.

The school board process and timetable for selecting Dr. Green’s successor has yet to be determined. Details on the superintendent selection process will be released in the coming weeks.

To read Dr. Green's announcement in its entirety, see:


Youth Voice Summer Program for Middle School Students

Any interest in Hip Hop Dance, DJ, Graffiti Art, Fashion Design and Spoken Word?
Come join the YouthVoice Summer Program!

When: August 3rd to August 21st 2009
Where: Redeem Center for Life, Peace Palace, 1800 Glenwood Avenue North
Time: 11:00 – 4:00 Monday – Friday
Cost: FREE! With bus transportation provided! Lunch and snack provided each day. Field trips to a water park, the University of Minnesota and more!

Questions?: Contact Jeri Ezaki at 612-668-3809

The YouthVoice Program is a partnership between Minneapolis Public Schools Community Education Program, Sanctuary CDC, Redeemer Center for Life and the Urban 4-H Program of the University of Minnesota.


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Why the Achievement Gap? This ex-Edison student will tell you. She now attends a Charter...

By Karen Romero , ThreeSixty
July 21, 2009

I think one of the most important reasons for Minnesota’s big racial gap in graduation rates and test scores is the economic situation in many families. Like the majority of the Latino immigrant students I know, I have to work after school to help my family here and in Mexico. Consequently, I don’t have enough time to study or to do my homework in the evening.

I came to Minnesota two years ago to be able to go to continue my education because in Mexico my parents couldn’t afford to pay for the books, uniforms, transportation, and other things Mexican students pay for...

To read this article (and please do), go to the TC Daily Planet website.


Thursday, July 16, 2009

MPS Board Meeting 7-14-09

The MPS Board Meeting on Tuesday, July 14 chiefly concerned K-8 preliminary Changing School Options (CSO) revisions to the recommendations that were presented to the board by MPS district personnel. The final recommendations are due at the end of August, but there has been continual discussion about the desired changes to the original recommendations throughout the summer. For a look at the latest set of possible recommendations, click here and download the three links under item "II. Changing School Options - Revised Plan and Variations."

We urge all PEN members to take a look at the progress that the district has made. There is a significant ripple effect to the closing of any MPS school, and all of the current K-8 recommendations have at least five schools closing, and other changes to magnet schools and attendance boundaries.


Athletic Opportunity for NE Students

One of the primary focus topics on the 2008-2009 PEN calendar was about athletic opportunities for NE students. Together, we identified a gap in what was offered by the schools and the Parks/Rec Centers at around the upper elementary/middle school age range. This lack of competitive sports offerings prior to the beginning of Edison's wide range of high school athletics seemed to be the cause of many NE families choosing to look outside of the neighborhood for more competitive athletic opportunities. Jenny Arneson has been searching out ways to fill this gap and has found a fantastic opportunity for soccer players.

Minneapolis United Soccer Club (MU) operates a city-wide soccer program that allows kids to expand their soccer playing experience. This group is for soccer players who are looking to play soccer beyond the Parks/Rec opportunities or NE/SE soccer.

Teams determine their own practice location, but play games in many locations throughout the city. Try-outs are happening now for the younger ages!

Thanks, Jenny!


Monday, July 6, 2009

National Report Finds MN Charter Schools Fall Behind Public Schools

"A Stanford University report finds that charter schools across the nation – including Minnesota – fall behind public schools in the quality of education they offer. The report found 17 percent of charter schools reported academic gains significantly better than public schools, while 37 percent of charter schools showed gains that were worse, and 46 percent demonstrating no significant difference...."

To read the rest of this article, go to the Twin Cities Daily Planet website.


Friday, July 3, 2009

Bridging the Achievement Gap

The high schoolers in Claire Hypolite's chemistry class are clustered in little knots of desks, heads down and pencils flying as they grapple with packets of homework problems. They toss solutions and gossip back and forth in English, Somali, and Hmong while they work. Watching this entirely generic classroom scene, it's hard to believe more than 80% of these kids were failing this class only a few months ago.

Claire Hypolite came to Edison High School in Northeast Minneapolis eight years ago after completing her student teaching at North High and a doctorate in chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She discovered she loved teaching while working as a teacher's assistant in graduate school, tutoring undergraduate students, and teaching English in Japan.

Read the full article at the Minnesota 2020 website