Gulen's American Empire

Gulen's American Empire
Gulen Empire map from Turkish Newspaper. DISCLAIMER: If you find some videos are disabled this is the work of the Gulen censorship who have filed fake copyright infringement reports to UTUBE

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Harmony Science Academy Gulen School to be INVESTIGATED-Who's Sorry Now





By Mike Ward | Tuesday, June 28, 2011, 06:57 PM
Amid concerns over curriculum and construction financing of publicly funded charter schools, the House General Investigating Committee will look into the state’s growing network of the privately run public schools, officials confirmed this evening.
Earlier this afternoon, legislative leaders said those concerns had played a role in an initial defeat of Senate Bill 1, a key budget-balancing bill, over provisions that provided state guarantees for charter school bonds among others.
When the House on a second vote approved SB 1, there was brief mention by state Rep. Phil King, R-Weatherford, that the House panel would look into the operations of Harmony Schools, one of the largest charter school operators.
Its connections with a Turkish group and its use of teachers from Turkey were among the issues raised in a recent New York Times story about Harmony Schools, an article that piqued lawmakers’ interest, as well.
House General Investigating Committee Chairman Chuck Hopson, R-Jacksonville, said his committee has started a preliminary look-see into Harmony “and all the other charter school operators in the state.
“It’s nothing criminal. We just want to see whether they are spending our (state) money wisely,” he said. “There have been some concerns about (Harmony) building schools without competitive bidding, and about other issues, but we are going to looking at every one of the charters.”
He said the inquiry remained in the preliminary stages.
“There are a lot of people, including some members of the House, who have children in (Harmony Schools) and are very satisfied with them,” Hopson said.
House Education Committee Chairman Rob Eissler, R-The Woodlands, said from what he knows, many charter schools including the Harmony Schools are successful. “There are a lot of people who think highly of them,” he said.
Earlier today, representatives from the Eagle Forum, a conservative group, were lobbying Capitol offices over their concerns about Harmony Schools, among other issues, several lawmakers said.
Before the second House vote on SB 1, several lawmakers said during floor debate that the concerns raised by the Eagle Forum had figured in the initial ‘no’ vote, but it was not clear just which concerns were involved.
Representatives from the Eagle Forum and Harmony Schools could not immediately be reached for comment.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Gulen Schools- Turkish schools ranked the lowest in college graduates.

Wall Street Journal article explores the sagging educational system in Germany and mentions their large Turkish population.  Also note the country ranking included with the article how Turkey is ranked at the bottom in percentage of higher education graduates.
Can someone explain how the Gulen Movement has conned local school districts in the USA that Turkey has some sort of superior education?  BALONEY!!!

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304066504576341353566196300.html?mod=googlenews_wsj
JUNE 27, 2011
In Search of a New Course
Germany's once-lauded education system is under fire. But fixing it hasn't been easy.
Germany, the birthplace of kindergarten and the modern university, has long been admired for its commitment to education and for good reason: For generations its specialized schools produced more than their share of Nobel Prize winners, as well as the highest skilled tradesmen—high-octane fuel for Europe's economic powerhouse.
Journal Report
Read the complete Germany report.
Today, however, Germany is coming to grips with a much different report card—that of an academic underachiever. Almost one-fifth of Germany's 15-year-olds can't read proficiently, and just 29.8% of young adults have a higher-education degree, below the European Union average of 33.6%. Many students who attend the country's lower-tier high schools don't leave with the skills they need to get additional training in a trade, according to the government's 2010 education report.
For a country whose primary asset is brain power, Germany can hardly afford to lag behind in education. Fearing that large swaths of the future work force may soon be too uneducated to maintain Germany's export-driven economy, much less support its fast-aging population, policy makers have wrestled with a range of reforms in recent years despite deep support within society for the current educational system.
"Being just OK is not good enough for a country with high living standards, wages and technology," says Jörg Dräger, board member responsible for education programs at the Bertelsmann Foundation, a German think tank.
Many policy makers believe Germany's early-selection school system—one of the few in Europe that splits children up at around age 10—is at the heart of the problem. After four years of primary school in most German regions, the smartest go on to Gymnasien, top-level high schools for university-bound students, while average students are directed to Realschulen, a path usually to white-collar or technical trades. Those with the lowest grades go to Hauptschulen, schools traditionally meant to prepare students for mid-to lower-level vocational training but that over time have become reservoirs for immigrant children and others who have fallen through the cracks.
More than in most other developed countries, however, the biggest determinant of a German child's educational track appears to be his or her family's socioeconomic status. Even with similar grades, children with college-educated parents are at least three times more likely to go on to Gymnasien than those from working-class families, according to data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
That's of particular concern as Germany's poorly assimilated immigrant population swells—some 20% of Germany's school children come from Turkish or other immigrant families. While the rest of the system scores average or better in many education standards, "the 20% or so that gets lost is a catastrophe," says Mr. Dräger.
Nevertheless, the three-track system continues to have deep support within society, partly because of Germany's past education and economic success. Most prized—and staunchly defended—are Germany's academically rigorous Gymnasien.
"The idea is that homogenous learning groups are better at helping children perform," says Katharina Spiess, education and family research director at the German Institute for Economic Research, of the early-selection system.
But Germany received a rude shock nearly a decade ago, when its teens unexpectedly scored in the bottom third of a widely watched OECD study, well behind many European peers.
German states, which control the education system, have made modest changes, and academic improvement, since then. In some regions, Hauptschulen arebeing combined with Realschulen, and in most cases, students at the combined secondary schools still have the option of pursuing a course toward a diploma that would allow them to attend a university.
But the collapse of a plan to reform schools in the port city-state of Hamburg last year underscores the difficulty of pushing through bolder reform. There, the city's conservative-Green ruling coalition pitched a plan to extend primary school by two years, waiting until after the sixth grade to divide children into different schools. The idea was to give children more time to determine the best education path, and let poorer and slower learners benefit from mixing longer with faster ones.
The result was a fierce backlash, especially among university-educated parents who feared their children's education would suffer by shortening the Gymnasium phase of it. Voters decisively rejected the plan in a referendum last July, leading to the resignation of Hamburg's mayor.
The defeat has discouraged political leaders in other German states from broaching more radical school reform. North-Rhine Westphalia sought to sidestep a similar battle by allowing individual municipalities to decide whether to form schools that kept children together until up to the 10th grade as part of a pilot project.
That didn't stop protests among some parents and teachers. In April, a judge blocked one of the first moves to form a so-called community school, putting the effort in legal limbo.
Still, many Germans argue its education system needs to become less rigid to adapt to an ever more global economy and give its people more opportunities to broaden their skills.
Sabine Lochner-Zerbe, a 51-year-old mother of two in Berlin, learned firsthand the difficulties of changing education course when as a youth she was sent to Realschule.
"I had the grades, but my father didn't think it was so necessary for girls to go to Gymnasium," she says. After training to become a florist, she realized she wanted to go to college. To do so, however, she had to go back for three years of high school to get the necessary diploma. At age 25, she began her university studies, eventually receiving a physics degree in Scotland.
But her tenacious efforts to pursue a higher degree haven't always been looked upon favorably. "People just view it as indecision," she says.
In Berlin, children already wait until after the sixth grade to take a specific school path. Ms. Lochner-Zerbe's 10-year-old daughter will learn next year whether her primary school recommends her for Gymnasium—"a lot of stress," she adds. "But I think it's better that they have more time than I did."
Ms. Fuhrmans is a reporter for The Wall Street Journal in Berlin. She can be reached at vanessa.fuhrmans@wsj.com.

Gulen Charter Schools in Georgia, Atlanta Public School teachers take a trip to Turkey

Five Turkish schools, three APS teachers, and one week culminated in a great learning experience and international relationship for the district. Bolton Academy teachers Ingrid Arriagada and Claudine Curry recently returned from visiting five Turkish schools for a week. These two teachers first developed their relationship with Turkey through a well-known global learning community called ePals. The largest online international community with half a million classrooms in more than 200 countries, ePals allowed Curry and Arriagada to connect with teachers overseas to expose their students to a new way of viewing the world by interacting with international teachers and students.
On returning to the U.S., Curry and Arriagada receive a welcomed surprise. ePals awarded the two teachers the “Teacher Teamwork-Collaboration Award.” The work that both these teachers have done to expose Bolton Academy to a whole new world is nothing short of amazing.
Through ePals’ international community, Curry and Arriagada have been able to engage in and complete standards-based projects that promote global citizenship with their students. “Through connecting with classes from across the globe, my students and I have celebrated our differences and similarities,” Curry said. Besides Turkey, Curry and Arriagada also have ePals in Hong Kong, Syria, Lithuania, Australia, Kenya, Chile, Spain and the United Kingdom.
Bolton Academy and two other schools in APS – Sutton Middle and North Atlanta High – also will be hosting Turkish students for the week of Sept. 6. Curry sums the ePal experience up saying, “Perhaps we will never travel to all these distant lands. Yet, through the power of technology, we share our humanity; our children learn and grow together.”

FOR A LIST OF UPDATED GULEN MANAGED CHARTER SCHOOLS IN GEORGIA GO TO:
Fulton Science Academys

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Gulen Charter Schools- Turkish Education System Lacks in Many Aspects..

Only 1 percent of Turkish students were found to be at the required level for their age group in science and literature,

Oxymoronish!!!  The Gulen Movement has convinced school districts in the USA that the education system in Turkey is stellar.  Too many FREE trips with staged tours of a few schools, wake up America you've been conned.

Turkish education system lacks in many aspects, report says

ISTANBUL – Hürriyet Daily News
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Children are not only suffering from the current exam system, but also from an inefficient learning process, as nearly half of students under 15 years old are unable to solve basic math problems, according to an annual education report.
Entitled “Monitoring education system report 2010,” the report released Tuesday said that despite some new policies implemented by the Ministry of Education, imbalanced conditions remain in every aspect of the system and the university exams, language of the education, as well training programs for teachers.
The exams are the most obvious problem, but there are deeper issues in the education system disabling students from reaching information and their potential, said Batuhan Aydagül, a coordinator at the Education Reform Enterprise, or ERG, that prepared the report.
“According to International OECD Program for International Student Assessment, or PISA, Turkey is ranked 32nd in scientific literacy among 34 countries,” said the report.
Only 1 percent of Turkish students were found to be at the required level for their age group in science and literature, the PISA report said, adding that 30 percent of the students are unable to use their skills to answer basic questions in these subjects.
Calling on the authorities to escape temporary solutions on the issue, the report emphasized that one of the problems of the Turkish education system is to find sufficient teachers. Teachers need to be provided with more extensive and improved training and need to be supported regularly in order to reach the most efficient results, the report said.
Experts, while targeting policies of the Ministry of Education, said that despite spending billions of Turkish Liras on education technologies, new policies did not help to improve the main philosophy to develop the structure. “Between 1.5 million and 3 million liras were spent on the project called ‘The Increasing Opportunities and Improvement of Technology Movement,’ or Fatih, however as they settled the technology without researching how these projects could merge with the current education programs,” said Aytuğ Şaşmaz one of the project specialist, during the conference.
Professor Üstün Ergüder, the director of the ERG said education in mother tongue should be allowed as their report indicated some students quit secondary school education due to the language problem.
“Many students cannot be trained in Turkish as they speak Kurdish at home causing these people to quit their education,” said Ergüder.
According to Aydagül, the school administrations should be decentralized to help problems be solved in the easiest way. “Ankara is trying to solve a heating problem in one of the schools dwelling the Eastern province of Elazığ, which is absurd,” said Aydagül.
Professor Ergüder said the central administration straitjackets school administrations by not giving freedom to the school managers or teachers to develop solutions against the problems that they face with.
Urging the Ministry of Education to be transparent on the developments, Ergüder said these reports will improve the structure of the education system.


Monday, June 13, 2011

Gulen Charter Schools Excuses, Excuses, Excuses, letters from Sonoran Science Academy, Horizon Science Academy and Harmony Science Academy

As an American it makes us want to scream the amount of OBVIOUS lying, deception and playing "victim" by members of the Gulen Movement. 

CHECK OUT LETTERS BELOW FROM
Mr. Fatih Karatas,  Sonoran Science Academy Principal

Mr. Salim Ucan, Administrator of Concept Schools

Mr. Soner Tarim, Superintendent of Harmony Science Academy or
Harmony Public Schools

Please take note of the familiar thread of side-stepping denalism of the obvious affiliations of these schools to exiled Islamic Imam Fethullah Muhammed Gulen.  Time to come clean Gulen Followers.  America isn't stopping with the investigations.  Pull your children out of these schools and stop them from spreading until they can be honest.


Comparing School letters to parents from Sonoran Science Academy, Horizon Science Academy and Harmony Science Academy.  Excuses, Excuses, Excuses
Dear SSA Middle/High School Families,


Approximately a month ago, we had a guest from Arizona Daily Star (Mr. Tim Steller) who visited our school and was quite impressed by great things happening at SSA. In addition, he interviewed almost all founders, some staff members, many parents, some students, ADE Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne, and many other individuals.

Well, today, the news article by Tim Steller has been published on AZ Daily Star. As you will see it for yourself, the story raises issues related to immigration and international teachers who have valid (and fully legal) visas and also touches the school's possible affiliation with the Gulen movement.  The reporter merged multiple sources of information he received into an article.

Dr. Yildiz (our Superintendent) had provided our schools' official responses to all questions raised by Mr. Steller during his research.  As a member of SSA family, no one knows our school better than you. Let me reiterate the point that our schools have no institutional affiliation with ANY non-educational organization. Our focus is excelling educational practices and academic success. And what makes SSA great is our hard working faculty, staff and students. We salute and highly appreciate the genuine efforts and enormous contributions of our teachers, regardless of their RACIAL background, to make SSA an excelling school.

The story touches very sensitive topics and raises numerous allegations. Even though it does not make any definitive claims, it attempts to raise suspicions. We shall stand tall and keep doing our best to help our students learn and excel.

We have a lot of great academic projects that continue to keep us busy (which is great). We don't let this distract us from our stated goals stipulated in our charter. We aim high and continue to work hard to reach them with your support, our dear parents. With this in mind, I leave the interpretation and judgment of the story to you.

I just wanted to share this news with you. You can read the full article,  or voice out your thoughts if you wish, by visiting this url:

http://azstarnet.com/news/science/environment/article_dec199db-be3f-5519-be3d-f6ad970db1f8.html" target= "_BLANK">http://azstarnet.com/news/science/environment/article_dec199db-be3f-5519-be3d-f6ad970db1f8.html
Go SSA!
Mr. Karatas
Principal
Copy of Sonoran Science Academy First Response by Mr. Yildiz
Now from Salim with Concept Schools dba Horizon Science Academy, Gateway Science Academy, Indiana Math and Science, Chicago Math and Science Academy, Quest Academy, and the other Gulen Charter Schools in the Midwest including the NEW Minnesota School of Science.
Concept’ s rebuttal of recent news stories in Ohio

May 19, 2011

To our Faculty, Parents, Friends and Supporters:

Recently, there have been news stories on local channels in Ohio about Concept managed schools; Horizon Science Academies and Noble Academies. Those stories use Ron Regan’s story on Cleveland’s Channel 5 that aired on Monday, May 16, 2011 as a reference. As often happens with television news, those stories, including Ron Regan’s Channel 5 story, are edited in a way that, in our view, mislead viewers about the operation of Horizon Science Academies in Ohio. As those stories seem to revolve around a few same issues I am writing to set the record straight and clarify any confusion raised by those reports.

First, such reports attempt to sensationalize the repayment by Horizon Science Academy employees of certain immigration fees and expenses as documented in various school audits.

As most people know, charter schools in Ohio are audited annually by the Auditor of State’s Office. Back in 2001 when Betty Montgomery was the Auditor of State, several Horizon Science Academies voluntarily disclosed to the Auditor’s Office certain expenses associated with the immigration of math and science teachers from Turkey who were going to teach at our new schools in Ohio. Horizon Science Academies were founded by Turkish mathematicians and scientists who wanted to raise the bar for math and science education in Ohio. At the time, there was a nationwide shortage of math and science teachers, so we recruited some highly qualified math and science teachers from Turkey. Just as the Cleveland Municipal School District did when it recruited teachers from India in the 1990s and paid for their travel and immigration expenses, so did we. Additionally, we paid these expenses for the spouses and children of our new employees, just like any private company would. The Auditor of State’s Office permitted the expenses for the employees but not their dependents. Audit reports from 2001 show that three Horizon Science Academies, Cleveland High School, Toledo High School, and Columbus High Schools, paid these expenses for 19 employees and some of their family members totaling up to about $13,000. All of these funds were reimbursed at the time the Auditor’s Office made its ruling, not recently as suggested by Mr. Regan and other reporters. Some stories do not even mention the fact that these funds were reimbursed on a timely and swift manner once the auditors brought it to our attention.

Second, these reports raise concerns about hiring out of state teachers and the issuance of H1B visas to some of our employees. These visas are issued to certain workers with skills in short supply in the United States. The Federal Government determines the criteria for issuing these visas. The Horizon Science Academies simply took advantage of a federal visa program at a time when math and science teachers were in short supply. Currently, less than 9% of the workforce in all of the Horizon Science Academies are participating in this government authorized program. Whenever it makes sense, Horizon Science Academies hire Ohio teachers and support staff.

Third, Mr. Regan’s report on Channel 5 Cleveland, which is used as a reference in other stories, included an interview with a disgruntled former employee named Mary Addi who was terminated in 2009 after she was discovered working a second job on company time. She later filed a complaint with the Ohio Civil Rights Commission, which was investigated and denied.

Upon being released, Marry Addi and her husband, who was an H1B employee at one of our schools, Horizon Science Academy Denison, filed a complaint to US Department of Labor in 2008. Since then Department of Labor has been auditing/investigating this complaint in a particular school, Horizon Science Academy Denison. We hereby underline one more time that there is no federal Investigation on our schools or Concept as the news stories suggests.

Fourth, such reports raise concerns about the Horizon Science Academy in Dayton, which is leasing its facility from an Ohio limited liability company that is owned by a Turkish businessman who was willing to take a risk on the development of this property as a school, when Dayton area banks and others were not. The Dayton school leases the property for $3.78 a square foot, which is a bargain compared to medium grade office space in Dayton, which is leased for $10 a square foot or more. News stories that make this sound like hundreds of thousand of dollars go oversees is nothing but part of an agenda of sensationalizing their stories.

Fifth, some of those reports raise concerns about borrowed money that was repaid to individuals overseas. When our first school opened in Cleveland in 1999 there were financial challenges. The State of Ohio does not provide any facilities funding for charter schools and banks as a rule will not lend to start up charter schools. After attempting to obtain funding in Cleveland, the founder of Horizon Science Academies, Taner Ertekin, reached out to businessmen in Turkey to find short-term non-interest bearing loans. The school paid the loans back. A portion of the loan ($36,000) was paid back via wire transfer. The Auditors never raised any questions about the loan. Instead, the Auditors questioned the method of repayment. We provided the loan documents to the Mr. Regan at Channel 5 Cleveland. It is ridiculous to present this repayment of a non-interest bearing loan as “practice of spending Ohio school tax dollars overseas” and is far from objective and true journalism.

There are 17 Horizon Science Academies and 2 Noble Academies in Ohio. Together they educate about 5000 students each year. More than 95% of Horizon Science Academy students graduate from high school 100% of those students are accepted to college. Our results speak for themselves with Blue Ribbon Awards, “Excellent” and “Excellent with Distinction” ratings, demand by parents and students, and most importantly 100% college acceptance for many years.

Charter schools including ours are high regulated with increased accountability and autonomy. Annual audits by the state auditors and ongoing reporting and oversight is in place. All of the Concept managed schools are not-for-profit organizations with transparency. All of our records and documentations are available for public review. We take pride in the diversity of our community and are proud of every single of our employees, as they are the ones making unprecedented differences in urban communities. What has made successful is our uncompromising focus on our students not on adults as a diverse community. We assure everyone that we will continue doing so and not let anything take away our focus from student achievement.

Should you have any concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to contact me via e-mail, ucan@conceptschools.org or phone, 224 388-9953 (cell).

Sincerely,

Salim Ucan

Now from the king of lies Soner Tarim, of the Gulen Movement. Excuses, Excuses, Excuses from Arizona to Ohio from Maryland to California, from Chicago to Texas. How nice Soner offers a phone number too!!  Same shit.  Gulenists all say the same lies and same excuses.
To the Harmony Public Schools Community:
A disappointing article on charter schools in this week’s New York Times attempts to put Harmony Public Schools in Texas in a context that is not accurate, necessitating this brief response. Many of us at Harmony Schools cooperated extensively with the Times on this story over the last several months, providing documents, interviews, tours and dozens of detailed responses to specific questions in good faith.  But, as sometimes happens, the end result was not entirely what we had hoped.
Specifically:
  • Repeating an old story, the article alleges connections where there are none. As we told the Times reporter repeatedly, Harmony Schools do not teach religion and have no affiliation with Fetullah Gulen or the so-called Gulen movement  yet the article repeatedly states and implies that such an affiliation exists, based on a composite of innuendo, circumstantial evidence and rumors.  This approach is disappointing, but perhaps not surprising, since the absence of a connection is not “news.”  The facts are clear:  We do not teach religion at all and we are not affiliated with any movement.
  • The article also questions whether “the schools are using taxpayer money to benefit the Gulen movement.” Since we have no affiliation with the Gulen movement, it is absurd and inaccurate for the Times to suggest that taxpayer funds are benefitting them.  At Harmony Public Schools of Texas, taxpayer funds are used solely to support operations and educate students, and we do so at a superior level and a lower cost per student than non-charter public schools.
  • With regard to contracts and purchasing, we use a bidding or procurement process set out by the state of Texas, and Harmony Public Schools do not discriminate on the basis of gender, national origin, ethnicity, religion, or disability in its programs, employment, admissions or selection of vendors. A range of factors, including price, product availability, and demonstrated ability to deliver are evaluated in selecting vendors, and all the criteria for “best value” have to be met, not just low price.
  • Finally, the article contains a clear anti-immigrant bias, and suggests that Harmony, one of the most successful charter school programs in the country, is somehow suspect because our founders immigrated to America from Turkey. As you all know, Harmony was founded by Turkish-Americans who saw a need and an opportunity to help Texas schoolchildren in the fields of math, science and technology, and we are proud of our heritage and of what we have accomplished. Importantly, our schools have become more diverse every year, and we will continue to diversify as we continue to grow.
The bottom line is that Harmony Public School operations and business practices in Texas are overseen and audited by the Texas Education Agency and, like every other state charter school in Texas, Harmony follows and complies with all applicable state laws and regulations. As we told the Times, at no time during our 10-year history has the Texas Education Agency found Harmony Schools to be out of compliance with state regulations.
Sadly, the impressive achievements of Harmony students - the real measure of success for any school – were barely mentioned in the article, despite being provided to the Times.
We have sent a brief Letter to the Editor to the Times, and we encourage you to post your comments on the article on the Times website at: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/07/education/07charter.html
Finally, if you have any questions or concerns about Harmony Schools or issues raised in the Times article, please contact me directly at 713-343-3333, ext. 205.
Sincerely,
Dr. Soner Tarim, CEO/Superintendent of Schools


Till then we remain watchful.....

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Chesapeake Science Point Public Charter School - A Gulen Charter School mean prinicipal escorted off campus by police

SEE FOOT NOTE BELOW: Where Principal Jon Omural landed a job after being ousted by the Hanover police.
Mean Turkish Gulen Prinicipal was escorted off this campus by police



County Takes Over Charter School
Police Remove Director From Hanover Campus
By Daniel de Vise
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, March 30, 2006

At the root of the dispute, sources said, is a clash of cultures and genders among the school staff.
A charter school in Hanover has effectively ceased to exist as an independent entity following the removal of its director earlier this month by police at the request of the Anne Arundel school board.
Public school officials closed the Chesapeake Science Point Public Charter School on Monday. The campus reopened Tuesday with a new bell schedule, three new teachers and a changed lesson plan. Two administrators imported by the school system are running the school, and its founders say they have been shut out.
An investigative report on the ouster of Jon Omural, the school's director, is due to be made public at week's end and may help settle the issue of whether the school board's actions were justified.
In a news briefing Tuesday, Superintendent Nancy Mann and School Board President Konrad Wayson said intervention was necessary to correct mounting problems at the privately run public school. Their investigation began with a union grievance and uncovered evidence, they said, of teacher harassment, seesawing class sizes, spotty attendance by students and teachers, and unkept facilities.
"We had some teachers who didn't understand that they had to be there the entire day," said Ken Nichols, acting deputy superintendent of schools. "The part-time teacher was teaching more hours than some of the full-time teachers."
The unrest at Chesapeake sets back the struggling charter education movement in Maryland. Charter schools have been slow to spread in the state; a dozen of them have opened in Baltimore, two in Anne Arundel and one in Frederick County. Many of them have squabbled with the school boards that granted their charters, including the Knowledge Is Power Program, an established, successful charter-school network that opened near Annapolis last fall.
Chesapeake's founders allege, among other things, that the Anne Arundel school board has played favorites with KIPP, whose middle-grades operation has been allowed to function without interruption. Mann, the superintendent, contends that KIPP's experienced leaders "knew what to do" and dealt with a handful of start-up problems "immediately."
Founders of the Hanover school contend the school system has been against them from the beginning. They say that the complaints against Omural are petty, and that the remaining concerns were trumped up to justify a hostile takeover.
"We don't have anyone in the school as of today," said Al Aksakalli, a member of the charter school's board. "If they want to make this work, they have to let us in."
At the root of the dispute, sources said, is a clash of cultures and genders among the school staff.
Chesapeake was founded by a group that included several Turkish-American scholars, some of them professors at local universities. The director and four teachers were Turkish-American men, while the instructional leader and three remaining teachers were native-born American women.
The three female teachers filed a grievance two months ago with the county teachers union, alleging mistreatment by Omural. They said Omural allegedly retaliated against them. Among other things, the teachers accused Omural of denying them access to the Internet and of treating them as if they were of an inferior sex. Kisha Webster, the dean of students, said Omural narrowed her duties after she spoke out at a meeting of the charter school's board. School leaders deny that.
Webster abruptly resigned in February, telling students in hand-delivered letters that she had "no trust and definitely no respect" for Omural and describing him as "inept." On March 3, representatives of the teachers union met with school system officials and described deep "relationship problems" between the director and the female teachers. "The picture that was painted was fairly vivid," Nichols said.
On March 6, three police cars arrived at the Hanover campus to relieve Omural of command. The school board imported a retired educator as acting principal. A subsequent investigation found teachers being assigned too many students, working erratic hours or assigned administrative duties, Nichols said. The rented classroom space allegedly required three days of cleaning because it was so dirty, he said.
"The only thing they did was buff the floors," Aksakalli said.
The three teachers who filed the grievance were replaced. They were "insistent that they no longer be at the school," Nichols said.
Founders of the charter school say the case against them doesn't amount to much. They consider the allegations against the Turkish-American leadership by the non-Turkish teachers trivial at best, prejudiced at worst. They point out that most of the parents remain loyal, even after the disruptions of recent weeks. Eleven students have withdrawn since Omural's removal, leaving enrollment at 108 at the middle school. Aksakalli says the school still has a waiting list. A handful of parents have complained to the school board; board members concur that most seem satisfied with the academic program.
School founders say the school system used the union grievance as a pretext to dismantle the school, essentially locking out its independent board, canceling after-school activities and clubs and installing a new class schedule that more closely resembles that of a standard middle school.
"We've asked for a meeting at least 15 times in the last two weeks. They're not giving us an appointment," Aksakalli said. "They're not telling us what the charges against Jon [Omural] are. We don't have a list; we don't have anything."
 FOOTNOTE:  JON OMURAL NOW WORKS FOR ERBU TV, THE FAMILY GULEN CHANNEL AS A PUBLIC RELATIONS MANAGER. 

EBRU TV Honored at 2010 NAMIC Visions Awards for Achievements in Television Programming Diversity


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SOMERSET, N.J., April 27 /PRNewswire/ -- EBRU TV, a bright new face in multicultural cable-television, was honored with a 2010 NAMIC Vision Award at a luncheon ceremony held this Thursday.  Presented by the Southern California chapter of the National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC), the coveted awards recognize the television industry's creators, networks and business leaders demonstrating a commitment to producing multi-ethnic and cross-cultural original programming that reflects the rich diversity of the global viewing audience. Nasuhi Yurt, EBRU TV's Vice President, expressed elation at his bridge-building channel's success.  "From our inception, EBRU has been committed to celebrating cultural diversity in the US and abroad.  It means a lot to be honored among so many other distinguished broadcasters working toward the same cause!" Among those awarded were industry leaders HBO, NBC/Universal and Nickelodeon.  Taking home the prize for EBRU TV, winning the "Best Lifestyle" program, was World in America with its episode "Guyanese-Americans." Produced by Yurt and Usame Tunagur, the series profiles the struggles and contributions of immigrants and ethnic communities inside the United States.  The NAMIC Vision Awards ceremony took place on April 22 at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, CA.  Since 1994, the annual event has recognized original programming displaying positive imagery of people of color. Entries are judged by panels of peer professionals working in major media outlets across the United States. EBRU TV, headquartered in Somerset, NJ, is the only TV network geared towards American audiences with diverse backgrounds, especially Euroasian and North African backgrounds. It broadcasts 24/7 and offers a wide range of programming such as news, sports, lifestyle shows, drama series and kids' programming. EBRU TV is available on RCN basic cable in Boston, Chicago, New York City, Pennsylvania's Lehigh Valley, Philadelphia and Washington, DC on Channel 53. For more information on EBRU TV, visit: www.ebru.tv.  Much of EBRU TV's high-quality programs are provided by Everest Production Co., contacted at www.everestpro.com.
MEDIA CONTACT:
Jon Omural
VP, Business Development & HR, EBRU TV
732 560 0800 (office)
SOURCE EBRU TV Back to top RELATED LINKS http://www.ebru.tv EVIDENTLY THIS SCHOOL HAD MANY SHORTCOMMINGS BUT HAS BEEN MYSTERIOUSLY ALLOWED TO OPERATE.

http://washingtonexaminer.com/local/chesapeake-point-charters-fate-school-board

Chesapeake Point Charter?s fate up to the school board

By: Josh Kowalkowski 02/23/08 5:00 AM Examiner Staff Writer
The fate of Chesapeake Science Point Charter School now rests with the school board. One month ago, Superintendent Kevin Maxwell gave the Hanover school until Feb. 23 to "cure" several shortcomings at the school, including hiring and retaining a qualified special education teacher and submitting plans on how it utilizes program spaces. "I think it?s certainly fair to say there?s been significant progress in the last month and increased communication with the school," said school system spokesman Bob Mosier on Friday. School system officials are now analyzing the progress to determine what the school has actually accomplished. The school, which opened in 2005 and enrolls 218 sixth- through ninth-graders, has been on probation since the 2006-2007 school year. Maxwell will now formulate a recommendation for the school board to consider on March 5, ranging from keeping the school on probation to closing the school. Regardless of the decision, the school will remain open at least through the end of the year, Mosier said. School spokesman Spear Lancaster remains optimistic that the school has addressed the school system?s concerns. The school, for instance, has hired two part-time special education teachers for about five students with special needs. "We?ve got them pretty much covered," he said. Besides improving special education, the school needed to provide plans on how they utilize their current building, and submit documents for a new facility they hoped to attain to expand to ninth and 10th grades. Lancaster said next year?s plans to acquire a new building or even expand the building, however, were abandoned for cost concerns. The school will now only enroll middle school students in sixth through eighth grade next year, thus eliminating the need for building documents. Parents share Lancaster?s enthusiasm at the school?s potential for staying open. "It was a wake-up call to the Chesapeake Science Point governing board," said Cheri Winterton, of Severn, parent of a sixth-grader at the school. "Now, it?s time to go back and focus on the education at the school." jkowalkowski@baltimoreexaminer.com


Gulen Charter Schools: A New Islamic World Order? - CBN.com




SAYLORSBURG, Pa. -- Fetullah Gülen has been called the world's top public intellectual and the face of moderate Islam. He has held court with Pope John Paul II and received praise from former President Bill Clinton.
"You're contributing to the promotion of the ideals of tolerance and interfaith dialogue inspired by Fetullah Gülen and his transnational social movement," Clinton told audience members during a video address at the World Rumi Forum in 2010.
Yet others have branded Gülen a wolf in sheep's clothing and a modern day Ayatollah Khomeini. CBN News recently took a closer look at the the life of the reclusive imam who directs a global Islamic movement from the Pennsylvania mountains.
Master Teacher or Deceiver?
Gülen's story takes him from a small town in Turkey to founder of a multi-billion dollar Islamic movement bearing his name.
Despite a grade school-level education, the Turkish imam leads a worldwide following of some 5 million devotees. They refer to him as "Hoca Efendi," or master teacher.
"What is the endgame of this movement, which constitutes a multi-billion dollar budget, which constitutes thousands of high schools all around the world, to universities, NGOs, markets, banks?" Turkish journalist Tulin Daloglu asked, voicing a question many have raised.
Gülen claims to represent a moderate brand of Islam compatible with the modern world. He emphasizes interfaith dialogue and the pursuit of science.
Yet one expert told CBN News there's much more to the story.
"It's not just a religious movement; it's the Fetullah Gülen movement. They call themselves that. So it is, you can say, a cult. It is a highly personalized movement," Ariel Cohen, a Middle East analyst with the Heritage Foundation, said. Cohen has been tracking the Gülen movement closely.
"This is clearly the world according to the Koran, the world according to Islam, the world according to Fetullah Gülen," he told CBN News. "But what he's talking about is not the caliphate, is not the sharia state--he calls it the New World Islamic Order."
Far from Mainstream?
Cohen said some in the U.S. government and academia support reaching out to Gülen's followers as a way to counter al Qaeda and other jihadist groups.
"The idea being, just like people who say that we should have a good relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood, that these are 'mainstream Islamists,'" he explained.
But according to leading French-Turkish scholar Bayram Balci, Gülen's ideas are anything but "mainstream" for a Western society.
Balci writes that the movement "serve(s) to accomplish three intellectual goals: the Islamization of the Turkish nationalist ideology; the Turkification of Islam; and the Islamization of modernity."
"And therefore, (Gülen) wishes to revive the link between the state, religion, and society," he writes.
Critics claim Gülen wants Islam to play a more active role in societies, breaking down barries between mosque and state while also promoting Turkish nationalism and identity.
Country Club for Islam
The Golden Generation Worship and Retreat Center, the worldwide headquarters of the Gülen movement, is located not in Ankara or Istanbul, but on 25 scenic acres of the Pocono Mountains in rural Pennsylvania.
CBN News toured the compound with a staffer but were not permitted to film or to meet Gülen. The 70-year-old leader is in poor health and rarely gives interviews.
Gülen came to America in 1998, reportedly to seek medical treatment. Since then, he's directed his global empire from Pennsylvania. A federal judge granted him a green card in 2008.
Shortly after he left for America, a series of secretly recorded sermons featuring Gülen aired on Turkish television. In one of them, he told his followers:
"You must move in the arteries of the system without anyone noticing your existence until you reach all the power centers...You must wait for the time when you are complete and conditions are ripe, until we can shoulder the entire world and carry it..."
"You must wait until such time as you have gotten all the state power, until you have brought to your side all the power of the constitutional institutions in Turkey … Now, I have expressed my feelings and thoughts to you all in confidence. Know that when you leave here -- as you discard your empty juice boxes, you must discard the thoughts and the feelings that I expressed here."
After the tapes aired, Turkish authorities indicted Gülen on charges that he was plotting to overthrow the secular government of Turkey. The charges were eventually dropped.
Targeting America's Youth
Meanwhile, the Gülen movement continues to expand its influence through the construction of schools worldwide, including in America.
Currently, there are about 125 Gülen schools spread out over 25 states. One school in Philadelphia receives some $3 million annually in taxpayer money.
"They work through the education system. Their main tool is educating kids," Cohen told CBN News.
Gülen charter schools have nondescript names, like "Truebright Science Academy," and focus heavily on math and science.
Many of the teachers hail from Turkey. Federal authorities are reportedly investigating whether some employees kick back a portion of their salaries to the Gülen movement.
Classified documents released by WikiLeaks show that U.S. officials have concerns about the Gülen schools.
"We have multiple reliable reports that the Gülenists use their school network (including dozens of schools in the U.S.) to cherry pick students they think are susceptible to being molded as proselytizers," U.S. Embassy officials in Ankara said in a 2005 report.
"And we have steadily heard reports about how the schools indoctrinate boarding students," they said.
Meanwhile, in its birthplace of Turkey, the movement continues to grow. Gülen followers are said to make up at least 70 percent of Turkey's federal police force, ostensibly devoted to their master teacher half a world away in the Pocono Mountains.

*Originally broadcast on Jun 1, 2011.