Here is how Barack Obama redistributed the wealth while Executive Director for the Chicago Annenberg Challenge - ridiculously bad.
Paul Vallas*, who actually made all of the school improvements in the Chicago Public Schools and then was forced out by Mayor Daley, recently explained just how Barack Obama and his boss Billy Ayers pread the wealth to radical community groups like ACORN, while they had their elbows up to millions of dollars:
Posted: 4:51 am
October 20, 2008
Chicago's former schools chief has flunked the education foundation headed by Barack Obama and founded by 1960s terrorist Bill Ayers - saying it failed to monitor projects and funded school "reform" groups that campaigned against boosting academic standards.
"There was a total lack of accountability. If you went back and asked, you'd be hard-pressed to find out how the money was spent," said Paul Vallas, the city's school superintendent when Obama chaired the Chicago Annenberg Foundation from 1995 to 1999.
Annenberg spent $49.5 million, mostly on grants to 211 public schools that partnered with community-based groups. But despite collecting millions, those schools performed no better than other public schools, a study found.
Ayers, a professor of education at the University of Illinois and an ex-Weather Underground bomber, wrote the grant that won the Windy City funding from the national Annenberg Challenge. He was a key adviser to the Chicago Annenberg board.
While much debate has centered on Obama's relationship with Ayers, there's been virtually no discussion about how the Annenberg schools performed.
"Very little of the money found its way directly into the classroom," Vallas said.
Most frustrating, Vallas said, was that Annenberg under Obama and Ayers funded groups that fought his mission, under Mayor Richard Daley, to impose uniform standards and stricter accountability in low-performing schools.
Many of Vallas' goals were later adopted by Mayor Bloomberg in Big Apple schools.
"Many of the school-reform groups viewed greater accountability as an infringement of local control. Some opposed ending social promotion and grade retention," Vallas said.
Obama defended the foundation's performance, saying it dispensed its funds to help struggling programs and train teachers.
Hey Joe! Watch your wallet!
Paul G. Vallas is currently superintendent of the Recovery School District of New Orleans, Louisiana.
He first gained fame as CEO of the Chicago Public Schools (CPS). During his tenure from 1995 to 2001, he led an effort to reform the school system, and his work was cited by President Bill Clinton for raising test scores, improving relations with the teachers' union, balancing the budget, and instituting several new programs included mandatory summer school, after school programs, and expanding alternative, charter, and magnet schools.
The position of CEO of the CPS was created by Mayor Richard M. Daley after he successfully convinced the Illinois State Legislature to place CPS under mayoral control. Vallas had previously directed the budget arm of the Illinois State Legislature and served as budget director for Daley.
Controversy plagued Vallas towards the end of his reign as CPS CEO. Following criticism from the mayor, and the election of a union president who ran on an anti-Vallas platform, Vallas resigned in 2001 and ran for Governor of Illinois as a Democrat. Vallas placed second in the Democratic primary, losing narrowly to now-Governor Rod Blagojevich while running ahead of former state Attorney General Roland Burris.
Following the election, Vallas was appointed CEO of School District of Philadelphia. In Philadelphia, he presided over the nation's largest experiment in privatized management of schools, with the management of over 40 schools turned over to outside for-profits, nonprofits, and universities beginning in Fall 2002.
In 2005, Vallas considered challenging Blagojevich again for Illinois governor in the Democratic Primary but decided against it. He then signed a two-year contract (2007-2008) as superintendent of the Recovery School District of New Orleans, Louisiana.
On April 28, 2008 he appeared before the City Club of Chicago and on Chicago news shows discussing a possible run for governor in 2010.[