Hey, there! Log in / Register

Do Globe headline writers actually look at their own stories?

Globe headline

Um, what?

Yesterday, the Globe ran a story about the charter-expansion results in Boston with the headline: In Boston, charter vote reflected racial divide.

Yeah, because black people voted overwhelmingly against the expansion of charter schools. Unfortunately for whoever wrote the headline, the map the Globe ran right under that headline shows that white people voted overwhelmingly against charter expansion as well: From West Roxbury to Roslindale to Allston/Brighton to Dorchester Lower Mills. In fact, pretty much every single precinct in the entire city voted against charter expansion - even in South Boston - except for 14 precincts in the Back Bay and on Beacon Hill. Citywide, the measure lost 62-38.

That's not a racial divide. That's an across-the-board repudiation of the whole thing.

Neighborhoods: 
Topics: 

Ad:
Like the job UHub is doing? Consider a contribution. Thanks!

Comments

Not only are you right, but this is important. It's important to be accurate in journalism, and to talk about race, but not create division where there is (for once) unity.

up
Voting closed 0

The 14 districts that voted in favor of it were all very white and very wealthy, so I guess you could squint really hard and decide that "votes split along color lines!" is accurate when all the yeses are white. On the other hand, yeah, it absolutely implies that white people across the city were in favor of it, when that is clearly not the case. (I'm in that 80%+ dark brown No block down near Forest Hills, BTW, and we're pretty damned white these days)

up
Voting closed 0

Look at all the brown color on that map.

up
Voting closed 0

I didn't see that it actually showed important data like margin or voter turnout which I think would be interesting to know.

up
Voting closed 0

The color shades do give a clue on percentages for and against, but city wide I don't see how it is a racial thing.
There's definitely a color difference here, but it's not black/white.

It's green.

up
Voting closed 0

How do you post a graphic?... in a comment at
http://universalhub.com

up
Voting closed 0

Switch Text Format, below the comment box, to Filtered HTML. Then you can use the img [in brackets] followed by /img after the image URL.

up
Voting closed 0

You have to have the image already posted/hosted somewhere on the Internet. One of these days, maybe, I'll get around to letting registered users host images here (I have the storage space, it's more an issue of still getting some spam accounts slipping through).

up
Voting closed 0

When you post a comment, below the text field is a handy blue link that says "More information about text formats." The link brings you here:

http://www.universalhub.com/filter/tips?nocache=1

It's really useful, I refer to it often.

up
Voting closed 0

The precincts that voted for Q2 (possibly excepting the one in the South End, and the little neck of BU) are in the most affluent parts of the city.

up
Voting closed 0

The correlation seems linked to parts of the city with with school aged children. Not too many kids on Beacon hill or around BU's campus.

Of course there's also a correlation between wealth and children in Boston too -- wealthier areas have less kids.

up
Voting closed 0

If you're around Beacon Hill between 7:00 and 8:00 on a weekday morning, I think you'll find there are plenty of school aged children. They are all waiting for buses to go to various schools (including BPS). Others walk to the Josiah Quincy school in the South End.

It's a myth that Beacon Hill does not have many children living there.

up
Voting closed 0

Probably a correlation between wealth and education.

up
Voting closed 0

...but personally, I voted against Question 2, not the idea of charters in general. I know various other charter parents who voted against it for similar reasons - what 'yes on 2' was asking for was not the right solution.

Of course this result is now presented as a clear repudiation of charters in general vs. this law specifically. I think its a key detail being glossed over in the name of politics and agendas.

up
Voting closed 0

That's very interesting to hear. Could you please tell us what it was about #2 that you objected to?

up
Voting closed 0

I'm not the previous poster, but I voted similarly. I am not opposed to charters in principal, and I don't have school aged children who would be personally affected. My major sticking point and what ultimately decided it for me is the essentially unlimited charter expansion that this was asking for. 12 schools per year every year in perpetuity is not reasonable.

Also I was particularly put off by the special treatment that exempted new charters from the same rules that old charters have to abide by.

up
Voting closed 0

I didn't like the 12/yr - too open ended.

I didn't like that there was nothing specifically addressing the issue of funding and reimbursement.

On the other hand, I'm wary of the attitude prevalent in discussions about BPS which always frame all discussions of public education in Boston from the perspective of just the BPS student. So BLS is supposed to match the demo of the BPS, not the city or if charter schools serve some of the 20K kids that don't go to BPS, then they need to be stopped. Etc...

BLS/AWC parents are the loudest voices to speak against most BPS reforms because at the end of the day, their kids are getting a good education.

up
Voting closed 0

The best part of the Globe is the Sports Page.
The rest of the paper seems agenda driven pseudonews

up
Voting closed 0

Is one of the reasons I don't subscribe to the Globe.

One example - someone told him the no people contacted 375,000 Boston households.

Very interesting - there are only about 275,000 households in the entire city (and nobody contacted me).

He shouldn't even need to fact check that - it's his beat. He should know it off the top of his head.

up
Voting closed 0

Boston's population is 646,000 in 2013. Sure that includes households of 3, 4, 5 people. But it also includes a bunch of singletons and pairs.

And if 4 unrelated young people live in the same apartment but lead separate lives, do you call that one household for political purposes? I wouldn't...

up
Voting closed 0

Let's go to the Census Bureau, which reports Boston has roughly 251,000 households.

Oh, hey, whadaya know, Stevil was basically right. Gosh.

up
Voting closed 0

Not sure if this was the snark you were implying, but it's pretty funny because we used to say that about the Herald. And now the Glob is the same. Actually the Herald is doing more digging into issues at the State House than John Henry's chew-toy. The Spotlight team may still have some integrity but the rest of that rag is cage liner. And given Dan Shaughnessy, I guess I can get my sports reading over at the Herald.

up
Voting closed 0

(excepting Universal Hub, of course :) ) Headline writers don't write the stories - they just take a glance at a story and throw out something aimed at drawing clicks. Drives me nuts!

Back Bay and Beacon Hill? How about "The only Bostonians who want more charters live in rich neighborhoods"?

up
Voting closed 0

Their only rationalization for the resounding rejection is race. Pathetic at best excuse laden at worst. Not unlike the result of another candidate on the ballot saw. Is there racism? Yes. Do some public schools fail minority communities? Yes. Defunding and bleeding to death public education is not the answer. So go back to your Ivy tower and get back to bemoaning the bigots from Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Michigan. You know those same white working class people that told John McCain and Mitt Romney to screw.

up
Voting closed 0

I voted "No." on Question 2, regarding the Charter Schools, because I feel that the public schools are in much more dire need of improvement, and of that money to improve the public schools.

up
Voting closed 0

What the no on 2 people said and the reality on the ground are different things - at least in Boston. This scared people into voting against it on incredibly false information. Consider:

From 2008 to 2016, charter enrollment grew from about 2800 students to a little over 8000 students.

BPS lost about 3000 students over that time

The total budget went UP about 3% a year by $200 million (and there was never a year over year period where it decreased).

The cost per pupil went UP at about twice the rate of inflation

The school budget as a percentage of the total budget ranged from 33.9% to 35.8% over that time (and is currently at 34.7%) i.e. - the city budget is as dedicated to BPS as ever - even though it's shrinking

The total staffing of BPS is at its highest level of the past 15 years (actually probably much longer - but that's all the data I have) with almost 400 more people on staff today compared to 2008

Despite losing 3000 students, there are only 70 fewer teachers budgeted for BPS than there were in 2008

If you voted against 2 for some other reason (like Vaughn) there may be a case to be made -although a lot of those issues the legislature has the power to fix if they become a problem. If you voted against it "because it costs the public schools money" - you've been had.

up
Voting closed 0

Stevil has a problem with BPS (the nature of which he can't seem to explain in any lucid fashion even to quantitative and policy wonk types), therefore ALL public education in the Commonwealth must be destroyed and privatized.

up
Voting closed 0

Debunk a single thing above

We've tripled charter enrollment and at the same time massively increased spending on and staffing in BPS.

As Upton Sinclair once said - It's difficult to get a person to understand something when his (her) salary depends on not understanding it.

Since you are not in public education, I can't explain your difficulty comprehending simple concepts of arithmetic and financial analysis.

up
Voting closed 0

This to me is the hidden issue with the charter question - according to these stats, roughly 5000 kids who were not in BPS did opt into public schools when offered a charter seat. We can't know if they would have opted into BPS absent a choice but I don't think the population of K-12 kids in the city has changed much over that time period.

So these are Boston families opting into the public education system, just not BPS. Altruistically, it's a good argument that BPS needs to improve its offerings to meet the needs of more Boston families. Cynically, it's an argument that we can't afford to educate all 75k kids in the city so need to work to make sure plenty opt out. You definitely see this with the BLA fight.

up
Voting closed 0

The total budget went UP about 3% a year by $200 million (and there was never a year over year period where it decreased).

The cost per pupil went UP at about twice the rate of inflation.

The BPS has been chronically underfunded for what it is (an urban school system with a mostly low-income student body). Increasing it's budget and expenditure per pupil, at a rate significantly higher than inflation, is one factor in improving the schools. If you argue that BPS's budget increases should be limited to the inflation rate, you are dooming the system to a future of little improvement.

Despite losing 3000 students, there are only 70 fewer teachers budgeted for BPS than there were in 2008.

As a result, there has been an decrease in the student/teacher ratio. That's the right direction to move if the Boston public schools are to improve.

up
Voting closed 0

Probably the last time BPS could have been called underfunded. Hell, even the head of the teacher's union called the budget barely sufficient just a few years ago. In English that means "damn we signed a good contract."

Much ails BPS. A shortage of money and bodies hasn't been on that list this century.

up
Voting closed 0

Massachusetts is usually at the top of the national rankings (and our schools usually rank up there with those in Scandinavia and Northern Europe).

That's why I voted "no": Our schools are doing extremely well - even the urban ones. We don't need to "save" or "fix" our schools by multiplying for-profit entities that employ under qualified people to save money for a profit margin. We need to resist cuts to arts and supplies and services and maintain the gains that came from changes in the funding formulas in the 1990s and the minimum standards of the 2000s - we don't need kleptocrats from Arkansas "fixing" them.

For more information:
http://learninglab.legacy.wbur.org/2016/01/07/massachusetts-education-ag...

https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2014/07/22/massachusetts-kids-are-but-...

up
Voting closed 0

This example is not unusual for internet journalism websites. It is fairly routine for editors to craft a succinct headline geared more to exciting a potential reader's interest, whether or not it reflects what the underlying story is about. Getting the clicks, on counting readers, is more important than journalistic integrity these days apparently.

up
Voting closed 0

Question 2 loss shows racial split on charters

Subhed: Ballot measure failed in city precincts with low-achieving schools

up
Voting closed 0

It only succeeded in precincts that don't have public schools at all.

up
Voting closed 0

And here are my 2 cents.

First, the article was fairly well written. No, it was not a statistical analysis of the results, but talked to both sides about the aftermath in a balanced way.

My quick read from the map is that the extremes on either side were seemingly opposite sides of the ideological chasm on this. Yes, the precincts without public schools whose children most likely don't attend charter schools either supported this, but the brownest of the opponents were not necessarily the heart of nonwhite Boston. Gentrified Jamaica Plain seemed the most against (or at least least supportive) question 2. Looking out our way, the precincts closest to the man whose website this is were very much against, and while it is a diverse area, just down the hill/on the other side of the tracks in Hyde Park, precincts with a lot more black and Hispanic residents were, um, less opposed to the measure.

So yeah, the headline writer should have actually read the article or at least looked at the map before writing what they did.

up
Voting closed 0