Monday, March 2, 2015

Sharing an article 03/02/2015


Image result for debt collectors
In this economy, it is not uncommon for people to have a lot of debt. In fact, the economic system in the U.S is based on debt (essentially). No one I know wants to owe money, and most people want to pay their debts.
Collection agencies, they are a necessary evil and they have a job to do; however, it seems like some collection companies take great pride in doing everything they can to disrupt your life and scare you into taking a bad deal. There are rules to the business, and many collection agencies are not above breaking them.
“Feds Fire 5 Debt Collectors”
“WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Department of Education said Friday it will end contracts with five companies that collect defaulted federal student loans after finding they made “materially inaccurate representations” to struggling borrowers.”

“The agency said it was winding down its debt-collection agreements with Navient-owned Pioneer Credit Recovery, as well as Coast Professional, Enterprise Recovery Systems, National Recoveries and West Asset Management.”


Image result for debt collectors
Things that make you go hmmm…

Dr Flavius A B Akerele III
The ETeam

Monday, January 26, 2015

Stories worth reading January 26 2015


Educators we still have some work to do:

“Racial Profiling on Campus?”


“$25,000 Settlement for Student Stopped for Arabic Flashcards”


And the story that never ends but should have ended long ago:

“Rave Reviews for Film on Sex Assaults on Campus”



Let us remember our campuses should be safe places of learning, and students are not the enemy.

 

Dr Flavius A B Akerele III

The ETeam

Monday, January 12, 2015

Grade Challenges



I get my fair share of grade challenges, especially from my graduate students. It is not uncommon for several students to email me at the beginning of a class saying “professor I need an A”.  However, those same students are usually the ones who are absent and not turning in work, and then they get surprised when they do not get the grade they want. Of course they challenge the grade, and while there has not been a successful grade challenge yet, the process is still time consuming and I think some students are hoping I will just cave.

Looking at a blog today: “A Student Is Challenging Her Grade, But My Computer Ate My Records. Help!” (https://chroniclevitae.com/news/858-dear-forums-a-student-is-challenging-her-grade-but-my-computer-ate-my-records-help?cid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en#sthash.QLrb2Ner.dpuf) , I realize this is more common then I had hoped.

How do you deal with grade challenges?

Dr Flavius A B Akerele III

The ETeam


Monday, January 5, 2015

The continued problem of punishment



I have written about punishment before, about the inequity between the rich and the poor. Punishment does not always equate to justice and often creates more poverty.
Case in point: "How Driver's License Suspensions Unfairly Target The Poor"
This is an interesting story which demonstrates quite clear some of imbalances within the justice system.
Why am I an educator writing about this? Because I believe this is an educational issue across the board, from the school systems, law enforcement, court systems, and the government. How often have we heard and seen those in privileged position be excused for something a poor person would get hard time for?
This issue needs to be examined because the imbalance seems to be getting worse.
Punishment is not always justice.
Dr Flavius A B Akerele III
The ETeam


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Not every teacher is supposed to be a superstar


It is a known fact that in a workforce you have your top 10% your so-called high performers or superstars, you have your bottom 10% your under performers or not making the cut. However, we often do not talk about the most important category of workers and that is the middle 80%. The 80% are the people who most likely will be there 20 years from now, they are the ones who consistently get the job done, who are there day in and day out. While they might not stand out, they are the category we should be nurturing because they are what make your organization run.

Most teachers fall into this category of the 80%, think about it, it is true. Have you ever watched those teachers of the year award shows? Have you ever seen what these award-winning teachers have to do to get to that level? Have you seen the sacrifices they made and the extra time and money they put in? What truly makes this group superstars is their ability not to burnout so quickly!  Do you remember Jaime Escalante of “Stand and Deliver” fame (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jaime_Escalante)? As good as he was, he had a serious heart attack and suffered serious illness while teaching, and eventually died due to cancer complications and in extreme financial difficulty. Tell me, is this what we expect from our superstar teachers?

Teachers are human, not superhuman despite the popular myth. Teachers have families, financial woes, worries, and problems just like everyone else. Why then are they being held to such a high superhuman standard and police officers are not? Why are we only trying to recruit superstar teachers and not acknowledging the many good teachers doing the job? Superstars eventually fly away, but part of what makes 80% good is that they stay.
During this Christmas season, please remember the good teachers who struggle to get the job done; and who while they might not stand out, they are having a major impact on our lives. Superstar teachers are not the panacea for education, the middle category is.

Dr Flavius A B Akerele III

The ETeam,


Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Stop the unnecessary divisions using stats!


Stats can be used to prove almost anything if you want them to depending on how you present them.

Let us look at Bill O’Reilly’s “big revelation” on his show recently. Let me also start by saying United States is more than just “black and white”, the way he presented his numbers are designed to do nothing else but perpetuate “black and white” divide. He missed the opportunity to help heal and took the low road and continued to spew hate and fear, so shame on him.

The FBI Crime stats, are based upon voluntary reporting by law enforcement agencies and the FBI themselves cannot really confirm their numbers.  So, keep in mind there are many unreported shootings.

Let us break this down the way number should be:

2013 Blacks committed 5375 murders, these are people convicted of murder

2013 Whites committed 4396 murders, these are people convicted of murder

  • What is missing here is the number of whites accused of murder who were acquitted.
  • Whites are acquitted at a much higher rate, enough that it is statistically significant
  • The conviction rate of blacks is several times higher than whites
  • Blacks are accused of murder at a much higher rate than whites (instead of things like manslaughter)

If you add in these numbers, you will see a much different statistic

2013 123 Blacks were killed by police with a gun

  • This does not include those who were chocked or beaten which would increase the number of deaths of both groups, but especially blacks

2013 326 whites were killed by police with a gun

  • Population of the U.S is approx 300 million, 63% white 13% black. Statistically, blacks are killed at a much higher percentage than whites

Police killings of Blacks down 70% in the last 50 years. (really?)

  • This not a relevant stat because it used to be virtually legal to kill blacks up until the 70s, and the introduction of video cameras has further decreased  previously wanton murderous behavior. The fact that he is applauding blacks are being killed less by police means he is an idiot

What is missing from here, is the fact that citizens of the United States are being killed by the people who are supposed to protect us, and these public servants are not being held accountable for their poor performance. If schoolteachers made these kinds of errors in their job, there would be a virtual lynching of them.

This is not a racial post, this a factual post, as an educator when I see BS being used as statistical data, I have to call it out. Lives are not entertainment for a show and every life is precious.
Law enforcement needs not just training, but training that brings them back into the community they serve instead of a being perceived as a separate occupying force. Do police walk the beat anymore? Do they introduce themselves to the neighborhood without ulterior motives? Why do they view their jobs as combat and not a public service? Since when have citizens become the enemy?

Dr Flavius A B Akerele III

The ETeam