AIR.org joins the Turnaround for Children Inc. coverup; refuses allowing response to taxpayer-funded blog

$377,000-a-year David Osher

So Turnaround for Children Inc. now has another Teddy Bear kissing its face.

David Osher, the $377,000-a-year vice president of American Institutes for Research, published a glowing piece on Turnaround on AIR’s “Great Teachers and Leaders” blog.

http://www.gtlcenter.org/blog/building-positive-relationships-truly-disadvantaged-schools

And guess who posted his lapdog piece on her website: Pammy Cantor, president of Turnaround for Children!

“Luckily,” Osher writes, “…Turnaround for Children, helped put the South Bronx school on the right track.”

Oh, really?

Apparently he missed this report of the South Bronx school’s test-score results since Turnaround went into that school.

south bronx

So, what to do?

We have submitted an op-ed to AIR to point out what a fraud Osher’s piece offers the reading public – to say nothing of the donors who blindly think their money is helping at-risk kids in poor school districts.

(Here is our response: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hlpbN5nB9O7A4aytAduqil_NG19INWntVj4Ylnd6iq8/edit?usp=sharing)

But AIR has ignored our emails.

We have filed initial appeals of their ignorings, pointing out that their website says they are taxpayer funded:

The Center on Great Teachers and Leaders is based at American Institutes for Research and funded through a cooperative agreement by the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education at the U.S. Department of Education.

We are patiently awaiting a response from:

pat gurin mug

Patricia Gurin, $50,000-a-year AIR board chair

Her website:

http://www-personal.umich.edu/~pgurin/

We have also filed a complaint with the Inspector General’s Office of the U.S. Department of Education:

Inspector General Tighe:

I am interested in your opening an investigation into lack of public editorial access to The Center on Great Teachers and Leaders of the American Institutes for Research.

AIR has refused to respond to or print my response to a blog article it posted on its website that praises the work of Turnaround for Children Inc. in spite of publicly documented evidence that Turnaround for Children’s involvement in at-risk schools is not only not as successful as claimed, but simply is falling short of its publicized goals.

AIR’s Center on Great Teachers and Leaders website says: “The Center on Great Teachers and Leaders is based at American Institutes for Research and funded through a cooperative agreement by the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education at the U.S. Department of Education.”

Because this is a publicly funded endeavor, it is required to provide access to anyone wishing to offer competing editorial viewpoints.

By failing to do so it is in violation of the tenets of the agreement with the DOE.

Its website further states: “The contents of this website were developed under a cooperative agreement (S283B120021) from the U.S. Department of Education. Information presented in this site does not necessarily represent the policies of the Department of Education and does not imply endorsement by the federal government.”

Even though the agreement “does not imply endorsement by the federal government,” that disclaimer is insufficient to excuse or insulate the American Institutes for Research from offering editorial space to opposing viewpoints.

The Inspector General

Inspector General Kathleen Tighe

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3 thoughts on “AIR.org joins the Turnaround for Children Inc. coverup; refuses allowing response to taxpayer-funded blog

  1. My research on the Turnaround for Children School and five others took place between 2005 and 2008. Ted Cohen’s assertions relate to a school and a timeframe that I did not study nor mention in my blog post.

    David Osher, PhD, American Institutes for Research

  2. John Adams once famously said, “Facts are stubborn things.”

    To wit, test data in wake of Turnaround for Children Inc.’s work are disastrous.

    But PhD $377,000-a-year Osher apparently missed that in his “research.”

    Maybe next time.

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