Public School Forum Announces 2016 “Issues”

The Public School Forum of NC (PSFNC) held their second annual “Eggs and Issues” forum last week.  NCSPIN was there, but the video isn’t available yet.

Yes, there were actually eggs (and bacon!) served. The event was held at the crack of dawn, in the middle of the week at Marbles Kids museum downtown again.  This  made it impossible for a parent to attend but perfect for business people.  That’s by design I suspect.

At the forum, the president and executive director. Keith Poston. announced the top ten “issues” that PSFNC will focus on in 2016. There’s a PDF that goes with this list.

  1. Direct Adequate Resources to Public Schools, Teachers, and Leaders
  2. Transform the Profession to Make NC a Teaching Destination Again
  3. Emphasize Quality, not Quantity, in Charter School Growth
  4. Elevate Race as a Focal Point of Public Education
  5. Fix the Broken A-F Grading System
  6. Support the State’s Struggling Schools
  7. Maintain High Standards for North Carolina
  8. Make Evidence-Based Decisions on Expansion of Private-School Vouchers
  9. Expand Access to High-Quality Early Childhood Education
  10. Build Bridges for Students through Expanded Learning

Quite an interesting, yet predictable list. PSFNC has proven to be an extension of DPI over the years. What they both say and what they both do are often coordinated to achieve desired policy, fiscal and politically tied outcomes.

Having said that, here’s their 2016 list, translated:

  1. Keep slamming the legislature about district set budgets, spending & salaries
  2. Spend tons of money on Teacher training programs & do nothing about teacher colleges
  3. Emphasize cutting, not expanding Charter Schools
  4. Make sure that every problem in schools tracks back to race. Everything.
  5. Write more Op Eds about A-F, but offer no alternative
  6. Support the State’s Struggling Schools
  7. Maintain and defend Common Core
  8. Make sure decisions are slow-walked on expansion of Opportunity Scholarships
  9. Expand Pre-K even further, put NC taxpayers on the hook for more Federal mandates
  10. Build an afterschool system for kids

From the photos of the event,  it looks like number one on the list includes stabbing at Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR) some more.

It also looks like the “school to prison pipeline” crowd will get some support from PFSNC. Take a look at this picture, which includes a presentation slide in the background. The slide reads as follows:

  • Apply a “Disparate Impact” lens to racial analysis
  • Create racially and socioeconomically  inclusive and integrated schools
  • Eliminate racial gaps in student discipline
  • Recruit and retain more teachers of color
  • Embrace more culturally responsive pedagogy

A lot of social engineering, buzzwords, BS and Red flags here.  That last one… what does “culturally responsive pedagogy” mean, exactly?

The bullet points above center around the studies with data suggesting that black and hispanic students are disciplined disproportionately.

What these studies never seem to delve into is what exactly these kids are doing, if they deserved said disciplined or what to do about it. Hence we are seeing the rise of the frankly idiotic ‘restorative justice’ movement.

For those unversed in “restorative justice”, it’s like a version of the AA steps — you sit down and hold hands with the people you’ve wronged and ask forgiveness. The point is to ‘repair the harm’ one’s ‘criminal activities’ have caused others. California teachers are being forced to love it.

This list also reads a whole lot like President Obama’s ‘wish list’ for school discipline. This also ties right into the edict handed down in 2014 to school districts by both the US Dept. of Education and the US Dept. of Justice in a joint ‘Dear Colleague’ letter.



Here’s the list of the current board leadership:

  • Michael Priddy, Board Chair (BIO)
    Consultant and Trainer, 21st Century Leadership, LLC
  • Gene Arnold, Past Chair
    Former House Legislator/Business Executive
  • Lynda Anderson, Board Secretary/Treasurer
  • Keith Poston
    President & Executive Director, Public School Forum of NC

Expect to see Priddy’s name might sound familiar if you’ve been paying attention to NC’s making use of the ERATE fund for school connectivity. View the full Board of Directors. Of note on the list is Carolina McCullen, of SAS.

Forum members are a who’s who of Big Biz in education, General Assembly members past and present and of course, the Ann Goodnight of SAS. Of Note are Supt. June Atkinson, NC State Board of Ed chair, Bill Cobey. Other noteworthy members are Andre Peek, who co-chaired the Common Core review commission, Karl Rectanus who ran the NC Chamber’s Common Core campaign (Hire Standards).

Follow the Money
View the list of major supporters, which include BluePrint NC’s biggest funder, Z. Smith Reynolds.  The Z. Smith Reynolds foundation gave PSFNC $80,000 in 2014.

Office Space NGOAccording to the NC Secretary of State, PSFNC is a 501(c)3 that first filed with the state in 1986.

Their registering agent and founding member is John Dornan. Dornan is now writing for another ‘education non-profit’ I’ve written about quite extensively — Education NC.

According to the NC Secretary of State, PSFNC employs a professional fundraising consultant called Moss and Ross.
Be sure to view the Fundraising disclosure form; this contract is not cheap.

Their 2014 IRS 990 filing shows revenue of $1,648,232 dollars. The 2014 990 lists one paid employee, President/Executive Director Lynda Anderson. Anderson was paid a total of $203,600 in that filing. View PSFNC’s 990 forms at Propublica.

PSFNC does some grant programs – NC Teaching Fellows Program and Education Policy Fellowship program. PSFNC also has a program called NC CAP, which focuses on coincidentally focuses on one of their 2016 focus areas: afterschool care.

They also do a lot of lobbying and, in 2015, hired a lobbyist Thomas Bradshaw to represent their interests at the General Assembly. Bradshaw is also on the Board of Directors.



2015 Eggs and Issues

Articles on PSFNC

About A.P. Dillon

A.P. Dillon is a reporter currently writing at The North State Journal. She resides in the Triangle area of North Carolina. Find her on Twitter: @APDillon_ Tips:
This entry was posted in A.P. Dillon (LL1885), Big Ed Complex, BlueprintNC, EDUCATION and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Public School Forum Announces 2016 “Issues”

  1. Ebrun says:

    Good job exposing another left wing nonprofit advocacy group. Does this organization receive any state funding? If so, their activities and the salaries of their executives should be brought to the attention of key committees in the NCGA.


Comments are closed.