Harmony Science Academy a Gulen Charter School

Harmony Science Academy in Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico are under the Cosmos Foundation. The Cosmos Foundation ran by Turkish Nationals who are known members of the Gulen Movement have abused many state and federal laws. Cosmos is the largest abuser of H1-B Visas for foreign teachers than the largest school district in America. Scratch your head and wonder why the Gulen Movement is getting away with reverse discrimination? Texas money crosses over state lines to support the other Gulen Managed charter schools, this is WRONG!! DISCLAIMER: If you find some videos are disabled this is the work of the Gulen censorship which has filed bogus copyright infringement rights to UTUBE

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Gulen Charter School Sexual Assault & Bribes

Pelican Education dba Cosmos Foundation dba Abramson Science and Technology
The Gulen Charter Schools in Louisana


Abramson Science And Technology another Cosmos Gulen School, SHAME, SHAME, SHAME

Louisiana Department of Education
Post Office Box 94064 | Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70804-9064 | 1-877-453-2721 | Fax: (225) 342-0193

Date: 7/15/2011
Contact: Rene' Greer, (225) 342-3600, Fax: (225) 342-0193


BATON ROUGE, La. - Today the Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) announced it was launching a full investigation of Abramson Science and Technology Charter School in New Orleans as well as reviewing the agency's monitoring process related to this matter.  The investigation, officials said, is due to a report the agency received last night alleging a sexual incident between two students at the school and questioning whether these incidents were appropriately reported to authorities, on top of more than a year of allegations and problems previously identified at the school.

Acting State Superintendent Ollie S. Tyler issued the following note to members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education via e-mail this afternoon.

Dear Members of the Board:

I am writing to alert you about a serious issue involving Abramson Science & Technology Charter School, a Type 5 charter school in New Orleans.  As you may recall, Abramson was placed on contract probation last year due to certain legal and contractual issues and was placed under a Corrective Action Plan.  Related to these incidents was a possible attempt to bribe an LDOE employee.

Last night we became aware of another alleged incident involving two elementary school students that was possibly sexual in nature.  A former Abramson teacher claims to have reported the incident to school leadership and alleged that no action was taken.  In light of this new information, on top of the issues that have been discovered at this school throughout the past two school years, we are immediately commencing a full investigation of the school and re-evaluating our own monitoring processes within the LDOE and the RSD.  We have also referred the alleged bribery to the Inspector General's office for investigation.

Ensuring students' safety is our number-one priority.  Therefore, I am recommending that we invoke any and all authority we have under law to prevent this school from opening until all of these matters can be fully investigated.

Abramson, which serves almost 600 students, opened in the 2007-2008 school year and is operated by the non-profit Pelican Educational Foundation.

Records show glaring faults at school with ties to Turkish charter network
Published: Friday, July 15, 2011, 10:30 PM     Updated: Saturday, July 16, 2011, 6:19 AM
By Andrew Vanacore, The Times-Picayune NOLA.com
Inci Akpinar, the vice president of a company called Atlas Texas Construction & Trading, sat down with an official from the Louisiana Department of Education a little more than a year ago and made him an offer.
As the state official, Folwell Dunbar, recalled in a memo to department colleagues, Akpinar flattered him with "a number of compliments" before getting to the point: "I have twenty-five thousand dollars to fix this problem: twenty thousand for you and five for me."
At the time, Dunbar was investigating numerous complaints against Abramson Science & Technology Charter School in eastern New Orleans, which shares apparent ties to Akpinar's firm as well as charter schools in other states run by Turkish immigrants.
In fact, state auditors had already turned up startling deficiencies at Abramson. The records they kept of unannounced visits to the campus, as well as interviews with former teachers, paint a chaotic scene: classrooms without instructors for weeks and even months at a time, students who claimed their science fair projects had been done by teachers, a single special-needs instructor for a school of nearly 600.
Dunbar -- having declined to take money from Akpinar -- recommended more than a year ago that the state board of education yank Abramson's charter.
But the board ultimately stopped short of closing down the school, giving it a year to shape up under a "corrective action plan."
Until this Friday, the school was set to open its doors for another academic year because of a tweak to board policy that pushed back all charter renewals until later in the year.
But after questioning by the The Times-Picayune, acting State Superintendent of Education Ollie Tyler late Friday wrote to the state board asking it to prevent the school from opening in the fall, citing problems discovered during the original investigation and a new information about an incident between two young students that was possibly sexual in nature.
BESE agreed.
Tevfik Eski, the head of the nonprofit organization that runs Abramson, denied allegations about cheating in science fair competitions and outlined a number of steps the school has taken to bolster special education. He said the school has no association with Atlas Texas. Atlas officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
But records of the state's audit, obtained by The Times-Picayune through a public information request, as well as first-hand accounts from teachers, offer a view inside a school that has drawn widespread concern in education circles around the city.
That an executive from Atlas Texas, a Houston-based contractor, would speak on the school's behalf points to the somewhat opaque connections that link Abramson with other schools and businesses founded by Turkish expatriates. Atlas has won numerous contracts in the past from a Texas-based school operator called the Cosmos Foundation.
Cosmos does not run Abramson, but it has a wide-ranging support contract with the Pelican Education Foundation, the local nonprofit that operates both Abramson and Kenilworth Science & Technology Charter School in Baton Rouge.
Among teachers who have spent time in the building, Abramson has earned something of a black-sheep reputation.
Many have wondered about the foreign instructors at the school who appear to be of Turkish origin. State records and interviews show some had trouble communicating in English, which has led to speculation that the school may be taking advantage of a visa program intended to bring highly skilled workers into the country.
Similar allegations have cropped up in other states where the Cosmos Foundation operates. The group runs a charter network called the Harmony Schools in Texas, where they've encountered unfounded accusations that they somehow promote Islamic extremism, largely because of an interest by some of the group's leaders in the movement begun by a Turkish religious scholar named Fethullah Gulen.
View full sizeAbramson teachers on a school-sponsored trip to Turkey received pamphlets, like this one, on the Gulen movement.
Both Cosmos and Pelican have disavowed any official religious links, though Abramson teachers on a school-sponsored trip to Turkey received pamphlets on the Gulen movement. The literature emphasizes Gulen's peaceful message and a commitment to serve "people regardless of faith."
Abramson opened back in 2007 on the site of the old Marion Abramson Senior High School along Read Boulevard.
Like many high schools before Hurricane Katrina, the old Abramson had struggled academically, finishing its last year in 2005 with a school performance score from the state of 31.2 -- far below what Louisiana considers "academically unacceptable."
The new Abramson, part of a revolutionary post-storm movement toward independent charter schools, was able to produce vastly improved results. Still operating out of a set of trailers where the old Abramson school building once stood, it notched a school performance score of 78 last year.
As the school's full name suggests, Abramson focuses on a science and math-heavy curriculum, and Pelican's website trumpets the success its students have had at science fairs around the state.
Like many of the charter schools that have sprung up in New Orleans since 2005, Abramson has welcomed young recruits from Teach for America, a group whose ranks in the city have swelled.

Mary Elise DeCoursey arrived at Abramson as a first-year TFA instructor in the fall of 2009. The school assigned her to teach 8th and 11th grade English courses along with a journalism elective.
But something odd happened around October, DeCoursey said: the teacher next door, who taught a Turkish language course, disappeared.
The instructor never came back but students continued to show up for the course, sitting unattended in the classroom day after day. Several times, DeCoursey said, she called down to the office and was told that someone would be up shortly. No one ever came, a pattern that she said persisted for months.
Meanwhile, the rumors about science projects had reached her as well. One of her students complained that she had finished her own science fair entry only to be handed a different project by school officials -- one "that could win," DeCoursey said.
Nor was there any apparent help for students with special needs, she said.
She was never unaware whether any of her students had the individualized education plans, or IEPs, that are required by federal law, and none of her students was ever pulled out of class for extra help. DeCoursey said the only time the school's special education instructor intervened in her class was after the school's principal asked her which students might be in danger of failing the state's LEAP test. Standardized test results are a major component of school performance scores, which ultimately determine whether a schools is allowed to continue taking in students.
Growing alarmed, DeCoursey and three other teachers who shared her concerns began keeping written records of what they saw, asking students to document similar instances of unethical behavior.
Finally, during a birthday get-together at the wine bar Delachaise, one of the teachers, Charm Baker, broke down in tears over conditions at the school, DeCoursey said. They decided that night to get in touch with the state.
In an email dated Feb. 2, 2010, and signed by DeCoursey, Baker and two others, they wrote to Kenneth Campell, then head of the state's charter office: "Though we are fully aware of the significant amount of autonomy given to charter schools, we are now concerned that this autonomy is being abused to the point that students are being forced to engage in unethical acts."
View full sizeEliot Kamenitz, The Times-PicayuneFour teachers at the Abramson Science & Technology Charter School reported a 'general feeling of fear' among the school's staff because of what appeared to be retaliation against teachers, parents and students who had spoken up about the school's practices.
They also reported a "general feeling of fear" among the school's staff because of what appeared to be retaliation against teachers, parents and students who had spoken up about the school's practices in the past.
Seeming to confirm those fears, the school fired Baker as the state's audit got under way that spring, according to DeCoursey and state records.
But the state investigation appeared to back up much of what the teachers had written in their note.
A team of at least seven people -- independent experts as well as officials from the department of education and the state-run Recovery School District -- visited the school and recorded their observations in written reports.
Though Abramson advertises a special focus on science and technology, state officials found lab materials "still boxed, with most of the instruments still packed and sealed" after two years sitting at the school.
Robert Daigle, an educational consultant who visited Abramson wrote, "It was the cleanest science equipment I had ever seen in my 21 years as a science teacher. I speculate lack of use kept them so clean. And this was in the science lab that all teachers go to for experiments."
Another outside expert who visited Abramson, Barbara Cassara, reported that several students confirmed they had done little or none of the work that went into their science projects: "One child indicated that her mother would not let her participate in the off-campus fair because she had not done the work herself. Another said the teacher did her brother's project."
A group of ninth-graders, asked at random how their grades were, all responded by saying they had straight A's or B's, and said they felt the state's standardized exams were "easy." Asked why, "they said that if you participated in the review, you would know what to do. They described practice on items that were very close to the items on the test."
Another group of students was "very vocal about their outrage over the firing of the 'best' teacher," later identified in the state record as "Mrs. Baker."
The school declined to give its reasons for firing Baker, citing a policy against discussing the conduct of its teachers.
The state audit also turned up a significant lack of resources for special-needs students.
Federal law requires that every student classified with a special need have an IEP, developed through observation and interviews.
Margaret Lang, executive director for the state department of education's intervention services, reported that all of the special-needs students at Abramson had IEP's that called for one hour-long session of special education instruction per week. "This would indicate that this is not an individual decision when all students have similar and very limited special education instruction," Lang wrote. The special ed coordinator told Lang that "instruction was limited because that was all she could do as the only special educator for the K-11 school."
There were also complaints from teachers and students about the difficulty of communicating with some of the foreign staff.
One group of students apparently grew "animated" as they told state auditors that there were "many teachers in the school who did a poor job of communicating material to them because of poor language skills and poor teaching skills." After an interview with one of the middle school math teachers, the state's audit notes, "The teacher has poor English skills and is very difficult to understand."
While the school employs foreign teachers, there is no evidence that Abramson or any other school associated with the Cosmos Foundation has ties to Islamic extremism.
Teachers who traveled to Turkey on an Abramson-sponsored trip brought back written materials about the Gulen Movement. But none of the teachers who spoke for this article described any trace of the movement's teachings in the curriculum at Abramson. And there is no mention of Gulen in records that came from the state.
One of the pamphlets brought back by an Abramson teacher describes the movement as "neither an Islamic nor a religious movement." Instead it "centers its works and efforts on high human values and the human person."
Still, Dunbar, the state's academic advisor for charter schools, described a series of bizarre encounters as he and others carried out the audit that suggest a network of associations at Abramson extending beyond Louisiana.
When his team made its initial unplanned visit to the school, they were told the high school students would be leaving for a field trip. But students "indicated that they did not know about the trip," Dunbar wrote, and "a few teachers said it was put together at the last minute. Team members suspect that it was done because of the review."
On a follow-up visit to the school, Dunbar was told that representatives from both the Cosmos Foundation and Atlas Texas had arrived and wanted to meet with him.
"They proceeded to shower me with compliments, to the extent that it made me feel uncomfortable," Dunbar wrote. Akpinar, the vice president from Atlas Texas, even contacted Dunbar after the meeting to see if they could get drinks that evening.
"I declined," he wrote.
After persistent requests, Dunbar said he agreed to meet her at the Starbucks on Magazine Street, where Akpinar offered $25,000 to help "fix this problem," Dunbar wrote. He recalled explaining that it would be a conflict of interest for a state official to take money from the school.
She responded that he would "only need to advise them," adding, "You are the only one who can help us."
Dunbar concluded in the same memo that the state board of education should revoke school's the charter. He suggested the state bring in another charter operator for the lower grades and disperse the high school students to other campuses.
"Later in the day I joked with my wife, 'I might need to enter a witness protection plan,'" Dunbar wrote. "In retrospect, I'm starting to think it's not all that funny."
A spokeswoman for the state education department said Dunbar reported the incident to the New Orleans Police Department, which couldn't find "hard evidence" to substantiate the incident.
Ultimately, the state decided to renew Abramson's charter for one year, contingent on the school carrying out a detailed corrective action plan. (A typical renewal lasts anywhere from two to 10 years.)
The school would have come up for review again this summer, but the state board of education altered its policy on all charter renewals this year. Instead of considering applications in the summer, the board will conduct reviews after school performance scores are calculated in October. The idea is to make sure the latest scores are available and, if necessary, give the state more time before the beginning of a new school year to find a different operator.
State officials have followed up with numerous site visits, and the school claims to have bulked up its special education staff.
But after Friday's sudden shut-down, it appears families will have to find a new school for their children, with little more than a month left until classes begin.
In recent interviews, several teachers who worked at Abramson this past year said problems have continued at the school, in particular around students with special needs.
Genevieve Redd, a first-year Teach for America recruit at Abramson this past year, described making several failed attempts to get help for a student she suspected of being abused, an account the school disputes.
Redd said she encountered a 5-year-old student from her kindergarten class in a school bathroom, poised in what appeared to be a sexual position with another student who had stripped naked.
But she said she hit a wall when she took the incident to the school's administration. She said the dean of students told her to give the child "the benefit of the doubt," while the principal remarked that "we all know he's goofy, anyway." She said they told her to throw away the page-long write-up she had prepared on the incident and simply log it as a minor classroom disturbance. The dean of students, she said, promised to handle contacting the child's parents and the authorities but never followed through.
When she caught her student pulling the same classmate into a supply closet, Redd said, the school's guidance counselor finally called Child & Family Services and the parents, but neither were aware of a previous incident.
The principal at the time, Cunyet Dockmen, has left the school. But the current principal, Andrea Estavan, refuted Redd's version of events, saying the school contacted the police and the child's parents immediately after the first incident. Estavan said the school decided not to renew Redd's contract because of poor classroom management, speculating that her allegations are retaliation.
Patrice Yarls, the dean of students, recalled a slightly different version of the incident. Yarls said that after questioning the students after the first encounter, the administration felt unsure of what had happened. She said the school did not call police after the first incident and could not remember whether parents had been contacted.
Redd claims that she left the school on amiable terms after Dockam explained that she would be let go because of budget cuts.
Andrew Vanacore can be reached at avanacore@timespicayune.com or 504.826.3304.

Folwell Dunbar, an Honest American Politiican (we need more of this)

Tevfik Eski, the head of the nonprofit organization that runs Abramson Science & Technology Charter School, denied allegations about cheating in science fair competitions. This science fair at Abramson was photographed in January 2010.

l Abramson teachers on a school-sponsored trip to Turkey received pamphlets, like this one, on the Gulen movement

Mary Elise DeCoursey, a BRAVE American teacher

Four teachers at the Abramson Science & Technology Charter School reported a 'general feeling of fear' among the school's staff because of what appeared to be retaliation against teachers, parents and students who had spoken up about the school's practices

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Gulen Schools- TURKEY: Who Is Fethullah Gulen? - FoxNews 110627

Harmony Public Schools fdba Harmony Science Academies start the Public Relations and Marketing RANTS

Here we go fellow Americans
The Gulen Movement has started their idle defense against the investigation (as if this will save their pathetic schools)

Texas Senate honoring Fethullah Gulen for his ongoing and inspriation contributions to the promotion of global peace and understanding.  As well as taking over American Education and stealing American tax dollars.

Harmony School of Political Science, New Gulen Charter School seeks donations

Good Luck trying to fill that school with American students!

If any of you Americans want to donate to Gulen's new Political Science Academy here is their website where they shamelessly ask for donations.


Albuquerque School of Excellence, Turkey trip for officials by GUESS WHO?

 Mayor Berry invited ASE 8th grade students to be involved in the blueprint planing for Albuquerque for the next 25 years.

Thank you Mayor Berry for hosting us

The Turkey Trip

N.M., Turkey get tight as lawmakers get gratis visits
Roundhouse Roundup
By Steve Terrell | The New Mexican
Some Roundhouse regulars' heads were turned in January when they saw the flag of Turkey flying above the Capitol in place of the New Mexico flag. Bloggers Notes: The Flag of Turkey is actually the Islamic Symbol, you silly stupid Americans have no clue do you?

I jokingly suggested in my blog that the state was trying to fix the state budget problem by renting out our flagpoles to other countries. But the truth is that seven Turkish congressmen were in town to meet with the governor, legislators and other state officials.

Turks seemed to be everywhere during the session. During the past two sessions, there have been "Turkish-New Mexican Friendship Receptions" in Santa Fe with host committees that included several state officers and legislators.

And in recent months, the Turkish-New Mexico connection has grown stronger. State Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino, D-Albuquerque, who recently got back from a 10-day Turkish trip with several New Mexico journalists, said Wednesday that he's just one of several legislators who have traveled to Turkey courtesy of a private group.

Sens. Dede Feldman and Cisco McSorley, both Albuquerque Democrats, are currently in Turkey, Ortiz y Pino said. And another Albuquerque Democrat, state Sen. Eric Griego, even took time off of his campaign for Congress to make the trip.

Earlier this year, another group of lawmakers including Rep. Debbie Rodella, D-Española, went, he said. And last fall, Ortiz y Pino said he made his first trip there along with Senate President pro-tem Tim Jennings, D-Roswell, Sen. George Muñoz, D-Gallup, and others.

Raul Burciaga, executive director of the Legislative Council Service, confirmed Wednesday that the state isn't paying for any of the Turkish trips. Legislative leaders in recent weeks have been talking about cutting back on out-of-state travel because of the budget crunch.

So who is paying? The cost of the travel isn't readily available. Because the state isn't paying for it, lawmakers don't have to file travel vouchers or other records with the state, Burciaga said.

The group that instigated the Turkish trips is the Turquoise Council of Americans and Eurasians, which on its website describes itself as "a leading independent and an umbrella organization committed to advancing the interaction among American and Turkish, Turkic and Eurasian people to promote and encourage continuing good relationship and understanding through its affiliate organizations regardless of their ethnic origin, religion and other preferences."

The council "brings people together by hosting public programs and private events featuring leaders and experts with diverse views on a wide range of global and regional topics through task forces, executive forums, luncheons, conferences, studies and leadership dialogue."

Phone calls to the Houston-based group weren't returned Wednesday.

The group plans to build a Turkish cultural center in Albuquerque, which would be affiliated with the Raindrop Turkish House in Houston. The Turkish community in New Mexico is relatively small — only about 500 people, according to information on the council's website.

"They approached us about a couple of years ago about sending trade delegations," Jennings said in a telephone interview Wednesday. "A lot of people think that everyone in the Middle East hates America. They wanted to show us that's not true." He said he learned that Muslims, Christians and Jews live together in Turkey without strife.

Jennings said he and other legislators were allowed to go wherever they wanted in Turkey. "It wasn't like the government only allowed us to see what they wanted us to see."

Ortiz y Pino said the main motivation for the Turks wooing American legislators and journalists is that Turkey is trying hard to join the European Union. But the senator said a Turkish journalist told him even if Turkey doesn't get accepted in the EU, the effort has been worth it because of the reforms undertaken by his nation in seeking membership.

Ortiz y Pino said there's a lot to be learned from Turkey. "It's the world's third-fastest-growing economy," he said.

So if you begin noticing an influx of Turkish coffee, tobacco and bathhouses into New Mexico — and if Istanbul suddenly develops a hunger for green chile and tortillas — you'll know why.

Contact Steve Terrell at 986-3037 or sterrell@sfnewmexican.com. Read his political blog at roundhouseroundup.com.

Who are these NM State Legislature that took the FREEBIE trip to Turkey?  They are not without controversy, surely they have all accepted the famous campaign contributions from the Gulen ran front groups. $$$$$$

Senator Debbie Rodella with her controversial husband,

Ousted Rio Arriba County magistrate Tom Rodella is causing a new set of problems for Big Bill. The husband of Dem State Rep Debbie Rodella claims the Guv knew his background was checkered with all kinds of wrongdoing when he appointed him to the bench in March. Rodella embarrased the Guv when he was recently forced to resign because of his checkered past. The story was breaking fast Wednesday night in the Espanola's Rio Grande Sun. Here's an excerpt.

"Gov. Richardson knew about the problems in Thomas Rodella's past when Richardson appointed the former State Police officer to be a judge March 31, Rodella said Tuesday, flatly contradicting numerous statements from Richardson's office. "I answered all the Governor's questions as pertained to the investigations in my State Police career," Rodella said. "I answered them truthfully. He did know."

A former wife filed a suit against Rodella in the 1980s, accusing him of repeated violent abuse. After he married his current wife, now a state representative, Rodella was repeatedly investigated by State Police for a variety of infractions, including ticket-fixing. Richardson knew about it all, Rodella said, and knew about it before Rodella ever applied to be a Rio Arriba magistrate." Reports the Sun.
Senator Pro Tem President Jim Jennings,

Senator George Munoz, nothing of substance here except Georgie Boy wanted to increase the hunting licenses available for people of NM.  Wow, impressive.

Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino, nothing much here

Senator Dede Feldman, an former adjunct professor at UNM

Senator Cisco McSorley, says "NO" TO UNM Golf Course redevelopment, but 'YES' To medical marijuana and 'YES" To FREE Trip to Turkey.


In Harmony
Ahmet Cetinkaya was a teacher in Turkey and then Texas before heading the new Albuquerque School of Excellence, a charter that is one of a growing number of Turkishrun schools around the country.
The Albuquerque School of Excellence, which opened this year in an old grocery store near Tramway and Lomas, uses curriculum, training and other resources from Harmony Schools, a chain of Texas charter schools where Cetinkaya taught. The school serves students in grades 1-8, with a focus on math and science. Harmony Schools, with a reputation for high test scores and graduation rates, are run almost exclusively by Turkish-Americans. Although the schools have caught the attention of journalists and parent groups, educators caution against thinking of
them as a united network, since they belong to different chains with no connection. Harmony Schools in Texas, for example, has no formal connection to the Sonoran schools in Arizona. Both are Turkish-run charter systems.
"I'm not sure I'd call it a movement," said Nelson Smith, senior adviser and former head of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. "There are several states where there are a number of schools that are Turk-led. If I could characterize them as a group, they seem to be high-performing and well-run, with a math and science flavor."
The School of Excellence aims to fit that mold. Cetinkaya leads tours of the school with pride, showing off the building, which has been brightly painted and remodeled to accommodate the 220 students enrolled this year.
Parent Marianne Hund said she researched the school before enrolling her two sons. She is excited so far about the education they are getting, and said the success of Harmony schools in Texas gave her confidence in the new school.
"They don't have to reinvent the wheel; they're going off something that has been invented and tested, and that meant a lot to us as parents," she said.
Hund belongs to a small co-op of School of Excellence
parents who commute from the East Mountains, and she said the parents and students in that group are happy with the school staff and want their students exposed to people from other countries. Still, Cetinkaya said he has fielded questions from parents concerned about the school's ties to Turkey, and about Internet-fueled rumors that the schools are connected to Fethullah Gulen, a prominent, controversial Turkish thinker who has pushed for more dialogue between the Western and Muslim worlds.
No concrete links between Turkish-American charter schools and Gulen have been documented, and Cetinkaya said his school has no links to Islam or Gulen's philosophy. He acknowledged, though, that most Turkish educators have read Gulen's books and may be influenced by his thinking. Gulen is controversial in Turkey, but is widely known as a Muslim thinker who condemns terrorism and promotes tolerance.
"Gulen is really wellknown in Turkey. He has many books and is on TV," Cetinkaya said. "Most people have probably read his books."
Hund described herself as a devout Christian, and said even if staff are inspired by a Muslim thinker, that isn't a problem for her. "I think you have to look for real experience with real people and then make your own assessments," she said. "My experience with the people running the Albuquerque School of Excellence is that they bring grace, patience, creativity and respect for all people to the table."
Cetinkaya came to the United States on a work visa provided by the Cosmos Foundation, a nonprofit that supports Harmony Schools. He initially came to Albuquerque in April to help recruit for the School of Excellence, and stayed on as principal when Harmony officials asked him to do so (and when he got a taste of the weather). Cetinkaya is relaxed but firm in debunking rumors that have sometimes surrounded Harmony schools. He said his school offers both Turkish and Spanish language classes, but in no
way pushes Islam or any other aspects of Turkish culture. On his staff of 19, three are Turkish, including Cetinkaya. He said especially in the early stages of a new school, he makes it a point to keep the school's doors open and allow parents to visit at all times. Transparency is necessary, he said, to dispel parent fears. "Being a Turkish-American BLOGGER NOTE:  Cetinkaya is not American and merely has a work visa and starting a new school, it's a question parents have," he said. Part of the school's central philosophy is encouraging participation in academic competition, including robotics contests and geography bees. In robotics class, the theme for this year's national contest is medical technology. Students are charged with building and programming robots that can simulate sophisticated tasks like placing a cast on a limb or applying just the right pressure to a nerve. Tyler Collins, an eighthgrader at the school, eagerly shows off the tasks the team will need to complete and the progress they've made so far. Collins, 13, hopes to become an engineer and is excited about the robotics competition. "I've been wanting to mess with robots," he said. "This is a good time to start my engineering."

Albuquerque School of Excellence Charter Application

And Texas citizens thought they were so special to be home of Gulen Charter Schools...


Turkish Olympiad-A Gulen "show": Another Gulenist sponsored contest. GENIUS Olymp...

Turkish Olympiad-A Gulen "show": Another Gulenist sponsored contest. GENIUS Olymp...: " http://turkishinvitations.weebly.com/genius-olympiad.html 'GENIUS' Olympiad - a Gulenist competition in NY July 6, 2011 by C.A.S.I.L.I.P..."

Friday, July 8, 2011

Harmony Science Academy, Gulen Charter Schools, Public Risk and Political Gain

Harmony Science Academy, OOpsie!  Now Soner Tarim, Cosmos Foundation et al want to re package the Harmony Science Academies as HARMONY PUBLIC SCHOOLS.  Good Luck with that strategy.

Charter Schools, Public Risk, Political Gain and the Gulen Harmony Science Academies.
Stunning, jaw dropping hypocrisy! The conservative Republican Texas legislature, in Senate Bill 1, passed in June, will guarantee the bonds sold by the private owners of charter schools. Privately owned charter schools, for example, Harmony Charter Schools, will be authorized by the state of Texas to sell bonds to construct new school buildings. The state will guarantee them by giving charter schools access to the Permanent School Fund. Isn’t this the Wall Street model …. privatize the profits and socialize the loses. Newly minted AAA rated financial instruments will be bundled to hedge fund managers and other “investors.” Hundreds of thousands of dollars will be made by bond rating agencies and financial institutions that put these bond offerings together.
Remember the rating firms that provided AAA ratings, paid for by Wall Street, for worthless mortgage backed securities. The Texas taxpayer will now be on the hook for this private sector school financing scheme. The relevant section of SB 1 states, “Senate Bill 1. Sec. 45.052.  GUARANTEE. (a)  On approval by the commissioner, bonds issued under Subchapter A by a school district or Chapter 53 for a charter district, including refunding bonds, are guaranteed by the corpus and income of the Permanent School Fund. There is more. Harmony Charter Schools is the largest charter school chain in the state boasting of 36 schools. Don’t let them tell you charter schools are public schools, they are not. Public schools don’t have the luxury of “encouraging” a child to leave because they might jeopardize the school’s test scores. Charter schools game the system by inflating their successes through a process called “dumping”. The Texas Education Agency (TEA) acknowledges that Charter schools “dump” low performing students and students with special needs. They push these students out of their school. Dr. Ed Fuller has been quoted saying, “It’s not hard to be ‘exemplary’ if you lose all the kids who aren’t performing”. Harmony schools “lose” an extraordinarily high number, about 50 percent, of their students in grades 6 through 8 according to Fuller, a University of Texas-Austin researcher. Charter schools do not out perform our public schools. They create havoc. Charter schools that have closed still owe the state 21 million dollars because they exaggerated their enrollment numbers. Besides their “dumping” policies, Harmony Charter schools have been associated with the Gulan Islamic movement. Harmony does not teach Islam in the schools, but their Gulan associations are undeniable according to University of Oregon’s Joshua Hendrick, Ph.D. His research extensively studied the Gulanists and their worldwide operations.
Under the radar of the American public, the Gulan Islamic movement has been quietly advancing its presence in the United States through the establishment of charter schools by their acolytes. Texas politicians are well aware of this movement. Gulanists continue to build their political cover by targeting, influencing, and giving gifts and trips to Turkey to our politicians. Fethullah Gulan, left Turkey under threat by the Turkish government for his attempts to establish an Islamic government and some consider him the contemporary Islamic version of American evangelist Billy Graham. The Gulan movement goes beyond charter schools. Their public relations strategy incorporates the establishment of “cultural centers” and “interfaith dialog” centers. They are extremely well funded and politically connected. Cosmos Foundation, Inc., owners of Harmony Schools hired Jennifer Sarver, of BursonMarsteller, one of the world’s largest public relation firms. Karen Hughes is Global Vice-Chair of BursonMarsteller. This is a very expensive and high powered public relation effort. Followers of the Gulan Movement operate banks, educational institutions, media, and business networks in more than 100 countries around the world.
The Cosmos Foundation, Inc. which operates the Harmony schools filed for 1,157 visas applications (H1-Bs) since 2001. It has brought 731 administrators and teachers from Turkey using H1-Bs surpassing all other secondary education providers nationwide. Immigration of teachers from Turkey under the H1B visa program is allowed if a qualified American teacher cannot be found. Questions abound regarding the qualifications of these Turkish teachers as well as Harmony’s sincerity in attracting and hiring qualified American teachers. All the principals of Harmony schools just happen to be Turkish men. Contracting, maintenance, and a plethora of vendor contracts (food service, uniforms, books, furniture, etc.) which by law should go to the lowest bidder are in question. It has been reported that local Texas businesses have been shut out and bids awarded to Turkish owned firms. Large capital improvements and new building construction projects will be financed by Harmony bond initiatives, awarded to Turkish construction firms, and insured by the state, meaning … you. These contracts represent tens of millions of dollars.
Here’s the right wing Republican plan: Put the public school system under relentless attack for political, ideological, and financial gain. Selectively target public schools in the inner cities where poverty is the norm and low performance is a problem and portray every public school in the same light. You know the propaganda is coming when they start talking about “government run schools”, “competition”, “choice”, and “21st century skills”. A recent New York Times article by the conservative David Brooks uses the language of the propagandist when he speaks of the school “reform movement” or the “reformers”…. a detestable perversion of the English language in the context that they use it. These right wing extremists corrupt the language; undermine our traditional public schools for profit and political advantage.
Thomas Jefferson once wrote, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and will never be”. Texas state government has seen to it that we rank almost at the bottom of the nation in public school funding (48th). Our public school teachers, staff, and administrators deserve better by virtue of their performance and the indispensible value they add to our community. Let me be clear. I am not in any way against privately funded faith based schools. However, Harmony Charter Schools and other charters, funded by taxpayer’s dollars, by their own doing, have raised serious questions about their practices at many levels not the least of which is the promotion of a particular religion and culture directly or indirectly. Finally, the Texas taxpayer should not bear the risk associated with the creation and issuance financial instruments for the private sector…. never, never, never.
Michael Hight is a retired pharmaceutical executive. His education includes a Bachelor’s degree in microbiology, with graduate studies in political science and additional courses in business management abroad. He can be reached at mich...@sbcglobal.net.