Concept Schools, Gulen Charter Schools Midwest operations

Concept Schools, Gulen Charter Schools Midwest operations
DISCLAIMER:If you find some videos are disabled this is a result of Gulen Censorship and filing of fake copyright infringements to Utube.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Gulen Charter Schools Censor The Internet, hides behind playing victim while repressing fellow Turkish citizens

A study on Islamophobia in the US, released by the Washington-based Center for American Progress (CAP) on Friday, highlights how a small group of donors fund misinformation experts who promote Islamophobic sentiments and how their misinformation spreads through the media and grassroots organizers like Eagle Forum.

The research was also reported that these misinformation experts are also manufacturing a smear campaign against the Gülen movement, inspired by the teachings of Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, in the US.
The extensive study, titled "Fear, Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America," was conducted through the collaborative efforts of prominent experts like Wajahat Ali, Eli Clifton, Matthew Duss, Lee Fang, Scott Keyes and Faiz Shakir.
According to the research, five experts generated the misinformation and materials used by political leaders, grassroots groups and the media. Those experts are:
Frank Gaffney at the Center for Security Policy
David Yerushalmi at the Society of Americans for National Existence
Daniel Pipes at the Middle East Forum
Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch and Stop Islamization of America
Steven Emerson of the Investigative Project on Terrorism
The research revealed that these misinformation experts have been very influential on Islamophobia groups in 23 states, exemplified by Brigitte Gabriel's ACT! For America, Pam Geller's Stop Islamization of America, David Horowitz's Freedom Center and existing groups, such as the American Family Association and the Eagle Forum.
According to the report, this small network of people is driving national and global debates that have real consequences on the public dialogue and American Muslims.
The research also shed light on the key foundations that endorse these misinformation experts by channeling $42.6 million between 2001 and 2009 to their efforts to spread hate and misinformation.
In the research, these top seven key foundations are listed and ranked according to the amount of founding as follows:
Donors Capital Fund
Richard Mellon Scaife Foundation
Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation
Newton and Rochelle Becker Foundation
Russell Berrie Foundation
Anchorage Charitable Fund and William
Fairbrook Foundation.
The Donors Capital Fund, which is listed at the top in the report, contributed $21,318,600 to groups promoting Islamophobia from 2007 to 2009. The research revealed that this money went to the Middle East Forum, Clarion Fund, Investigative Project on Terrorism and the David Horowitz Freedom Center.
One of the significant parts of the research claims that these misinformation experts have served as source for Anders Breivik who shot and killed 77 people in Norway on July 22.
In the research, it was reported that Breivik cited Robert Spencer, one of the anti-Muslim misinformation scholars, and his blog, Jihad Watch, 162 times in his manifesto. Another member of this "network of Islamophobia" in America is David Horowitz and his Freedom Center website. Spencer's frequent collaborator Pamela Geller and her blog, Atlas Shrugs, were also mentioned 12 times by Breivik.
According to former CIA officer and terrorism consultant Marc Sageman as quoted in the report, the writings of these anti-Muslim misinformation experts make up “the infrastructure from which Breivik emerged.”
Now, it is important to make a distinction and say that even though some of these misinformation experts are of Jewish decent, like David Yerushalmi for example, not all Jewish organizations are in the same alarmist line.
For example, the Anti-Defamation League reviewed Yerushalmi's activities and concluded that he has a "record of anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant and black bigotry.
The research also pointed out that The Eagle Forum, which is classified within the Islamophobia network, has targeted the Gülen movement, labeling it as a threat of radical Islam, although it actually devotes itself to education, global peace and mutual understanding efforts.
Noting that the Eagle Forum partners with Brigitte Gabriel's ACT! for America and Frank Gaffney's Center for Security Policy to push anti-Muslim issues, particularly anti-Shariah hysteria, the study explained: "At its 2011 Eagle Forum conference in St. Louis, Missouri, for example, Gabriel, Gaffney and others in the network revealed a new supposed threat: Muslim Gülen schools, which they claim would educate children through the lens of Islam and teach them to 'hate Americans'."
"Worse, the speakers alleged that President [Barack] Obama's support for charter school reforms was a back-door strategy for using taxpayer money to fund the schools," it added. "Of course, Gülen schools are nothing of the sort. They are the product of moderate Turkish Muslim educators who want 'a blend of religious faith and largely Western curriculum'," the study, nevertheless, maintained.
Now we should also remember a disappointing article appeared in The New York Times on June 7, by Stephanie Saul titled “Charter Schools Tied to Turkey Grow in Texas,” which attempted to defame Harmony Public Schools in Texas.
The research raises the question of whether the article was a part of these misinformation campaigns or not.
As we remember quite well, the article contained an explicitly anti-immigrant bias and suggested that Harmony, one of the most successful charter school programs in the US, is somehow suspect because its founders were Turkish immigrants. Unfortunately, the impressive success story of Harmony students was barely mentioned in the article.
This New York Times article triggered some other biased articles in The Times Picayune of New Orleans, leading the charter of Abramson Charter School to be revoked. The school was run by the Pelican Foundation, which was established in December 2005 and primarily focuses on math, science and technology. Now, they are trying to start a similar smear campaign against Kenilworth Science and Technology School, which also operates under the Pelican Foundation.
Now, I think it is necessary to clarify here that even though these schools are often called Gülen schools, in fact they are quite different. As a reporter, I interviewed some of the founders of these schools and they claim that they have no affiliation with the Gülen movement, which has devoted itself to global peace and education in all over the world. Is it bad to be affiliated with the Gülen Movement? Most definitely not, but even though some of the founders of these schools migrated from Turkey and were inspired by the teachings of Mr. Gülen, they are American citizens and it's their constitutional right to choose to identify themselves however they want.
Mainstream American media, interestingly, remains silent about CAP's research.
* Aydoğan Vatandaş is an investigative reporter based in New York and holds an MA in media studies.

The repressive regime continues in Turkey
The Turkish government goes on arrested those who are in opposition.
 Just a few days ago, ten members of the very popular and opponent National Channel (Ulusal Kanal) workers and Aydinlik newspaper staff were put in jail.The Government's police raided Aydinlik and took 10 people into custody.  The police officers searched the whole TV building and the press agency and captured many documents and computers..
 "The Police based their actions on a recent broadcast about the prime minister's speech."

Because these kinds of operations have been carried on on opponent press agencies, this rationale is not supported by the truth
Those who are under arrest by the AKP government have started a hunger strike.  Many of their friends who are not imprisoned have joined them. ,Those who are imprisoned are facing serious health problems because of the bad conditions
The Turkish police raided one Turkish press office and one Turkish TV office.  As a result, they arrested 10 people.  Other Turkish media will not report this, because they are afraid of a Government clamp down." reporter USA by Pen Macpherson




Saturday, August 13, 2011

"Money" Gulen Horizon Charter School applies for $9.2 million

Charter school seeking $9.2M to expand

County commissioners must approve issuance of the revenue bonds.

By Margo Rutledge Kissell, Staff Writer
Updated 3:17 PM Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Montgomery County commissioners will decide Thursday whether to approve the issuance of $9.2 million in tax-exempt revenue bonds to expand a controversial charter school in Dayton.
Deputy County Administrator Joe Tuss said the county would have no liability for the issuance of the bonds, but commission approval is required under the Internal Revenue Code.
The bonds would be issued by the Industrial Development Authority of the County of Pima, Ariz. Proceeds of the bonds would be loaned to New Plan Learning, Inc., an Ohio nonprofit corporation, to finance the expansion of Horizon Science Academy — Dayton High School at 250 Shoup Mill Road.
Chicago-based Concept Schools runs 19 Ohio charter schools, including three Horizon Science Academies in Dayton. One of the state’s largest operators of publicly financed charters, it was founded by Turkish educators inspired by religious leader and scholar, Fethullah Gulen.
The commissioners unanimously approved the same issuance of bonds in June 2010, but the process is being repeated because the approval expired before bonds could be issued, officials said.
Concept Vice President Salim Ucan said the plan calls for moving students from an elementary school at 545 Odlin Ave. to the Shoup Mill location to create a K-12 campus by the 2012-13 school year.
Part of the school would be renovated to add classrooms, offices, labs and a cafeteria, and a new gymnasium also would be built. School officials also want to purchase 3.26 acres of adjacent property for athletic fields.
Three people — a parent, a grandparent and a representative of the charter school’s sponsor, Buckeye Hope Foundation — spoke in favor of the financing during a public hearing Tuesday before Tuss and Linda Gum, a community/economic development specialist.
Ohio Federation of Teachers President Sue Taylor took a stand against the proposal, raising concerns in a letter to county officials about New Plan Learning and Concept Schools.
“We believe this particular bond issuance requires further disclosure for the specifics surrounding these schools and the related entities,” wrote Taylor, who asked that the county commission table the resolution for further study.
Though Gulen preaches a philosophy of nonviolence, interfaith dialogue and personal success through education in math and sciences, the movement has drawn praise and criticism from both ends of the spectrum.
Teachers’ union officials say the schools misuse the H-1B visa program to import Turkish teachers, bypassing qualified Americans, while conservative bloggers accuse Gulen followers of trying to brainwash kids in the ways of radical Islam.
Ucan said that as publicly funded schools, they are forbidden to push religion.
Former President Clinton and former President Reagan’s secretary of state, James Baker, are among the movement’s supporters, lauding its success in educating kids in tough urban developments.
The Gulen movement and the Horizon schools were the subject of a March 20 Dayton Daily News examination.
Contact this reporter at 
(937) 225-2094 or mkissell

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Horizon Science Academy, Gulen Charter School Turkey lowest in higher education

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!!!
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

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Horizon Science Academy, 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

Gee...sounds like the Gulen Movement should clean up their own backyard before professing to know what is best for American children.   What a scam!!!

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.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Gulen Charter School Chicago Math and Science Academy struggles with union organizing and whether they are truly a "public school"

We have reported on the long Teachers Union battle here before between CMSA (Chicago Math and Science Academy) Salim Ucan seems to have his hands full these days from the Federal Investigation on the school to trying to get that Bond Financing for $93 million to answer questions about the tax payers money used to pay for family member's h1-b visas.   Salim must have his attorney on speed dial.  Good luck Salim you will need it, if you REALLY believe you are a private school then you should not be accepting public money.
For the last several years, politicians around here—Mayor Emanuel included—have been enthusiastically championing charter schools as the next great thing in public education.
But if a north-side charter school gets its way, the pols might have to drop the "public" part of the appellation.
According to the operators of the Chicago Math and Science Academy, a school in Rogers Park, charter schools are not really public schools so much as "public charters."
"The important point is that we're public charters but we're not governmental," said Salim Ucan, the founding principal of CMSA.
It is, to be sure, a subtle distinction, which they've been advancing in a legal case that has forestalled a union-organizing effort by teachers.
Coincidentally, of course.
Before I get into the details, let me break for a refresher on this whole charter school thing. As you may recall from my last primer, charters are basically publicly financed schools with private school privileges. They can limit enrollment to any kid whose parent fills out an application, as opposed to regular neighborhood schools that have to admit everyone who walks through the doors. They reserve the right to toss out, for one reason or another, miscreants, malcontents, slow learners, low achievers, and assorted other knuckleheads (but enough about my high school career). These students then get sent down the street to the regular public school, which has no choice but to take them. And—last but certainly not least—charter schools can hire and fire teachers without worrying about contract niceties like due process.
In Chicago, creating more charters is what's known as school reform.
CMSA was welcomed to town eight years ago by 49th Ward alderman Joe Moore, who now rather sheepishly admits he didn't see things working out this way. "It's really quite sad," he said. "The school had done a lot of good work over the years."
It's an affiliate of an Ohio-based operation called Concept Schools, which was created by Taner Ertekin and Ehat Ercanli, a couple of Turkish-born educators who claimed to have produced extraordinary results with inner-city kids in Cleveland through a highly regimented curriculum heavy on math and science.
They opened CMSA in 2004 in the old St. Jerome's school on Morse Avenue. Five years later, with enrollment rising, the school wanted to move to a bigger site, the old Mega Mall building at 7212 N. Clark. The relocation required a zoning change.
Their consultant on that move was Christopher Hill, a former commissioner of the city's planning department under Mayor Daley. Their zoning lawyer was Gery Chico, Mayor Daley's former chief of staff and school board head (and the guy who came in second in February's mayoral election). Chico's wife, Sunny Chico, was on their board (she's not anymore). Moore's enthusiastic endorsement pretty much guaranteed they got their zoning change.
"I went and visited the school—it was a disciplined, nurturing environment," said Moore. "So I went to bat for them on getting the building and the zoning change. I thought they were good for education in my ward."
By 2010 the school's enrollment had grown to roughly 600 students and they employed about 35 teachers and nine staff. The school had developed a good reputation for educating working-class black and Hispanic kids from the neighborhood.
"Things were going well," Moore said. "And then things changed."
Part of the problem, he said, is that Ucan, the founding principal, was promoted to Concept's vice president. "Salim's a good communicator," Moore said. "After he left, it's gotten worse."
In particular, the school officials have not taken kindly to an effort by teachers to form a union.
"We felt our voices weren't being heard when it came to decision-making issues," said Jen Collins, a teacher at the school.
In addition, the teachers wanted salaries governed by a single school-wide contract as opposed to contracts with individual teachers. "You'd like a sense of what you expect to be making in ten years," said Nicole Bardoulas, another teacher in the school.
Under state law, if more than 50 percent of a public school's workforce signs union cards, the school is required to recognize the union as a bargaining agent and begin negotiating a contract, a process overseen by the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board.
And more than half of the CMSA teachers and staff did so in June 2010, asking that they be represented by the Chicago Alliance of Charter Teachers and Staff. But school officials didn't recognize the union.
Moore says he met with school officials and pleaded with them to recognize the union. "I listened to their side of the story," he said. "They told me they demanded a lot of teachers, like longer hours and making home visits. They said they were afraid they'd lose that if the union comes in. I told them, 'It's too late to keep the union out—they're already in. Work with your teachers.' But they wouldn't listen to me."
Instead, school officials fired a teacher, Rhonda Hartwell, who was advocating for the union.
The union filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the state on Hartwell's behalf. The school eventually settled the case, agreeing to pay Hartwell $40,000 while admitting no wrongdoing.
As for recognizing the union and negotiating a contract—well, that's where things got really tricky. The Illinois Education Labor Relations Board doesn't have jurisdiction in cases involving private or "nongovernmental" schools. Instead, labor issues at those schools fall under the authority of the National Labor Relations Board. And CMSA officials have argued that's the kind of school they are.
On July 29, 2010, they filed a request with the NLRB, asking them to assume jurisdiction in the matter on the grounds that they are a nongovernmental school.
To prove their point, they recited a long list of ways in which they claimed to have no connection with any supervising governmental body, even though in 2009 they signed a five-year charter contract with the Chicago Public Schools.
For instance, they argued that no government owns their "primary place of business," although they don't have to pay property taxes on the site since it's a school. They said nothing in their CPS charter agreement "addresses the pay and benefits" that "must be offered to CMSA employees." And even though CPS and the state pay them about $5.5 million a year to run their school, CPS has no say in how they spend it. "At most, CPS might correct typographical errors, or ask for clarifications if it has questions about certain numbers obtained in the budget report," according to the brief.
I'm sure incoming CEO Jean-Claude Brizard, a charter school advocate, will be happy to know about that.
In short, CMSA is a public school in that members of the general public get to attend (provided they fill out those application forms) and the school receives public money. Obviously, school officials have no problem with that.
But they say they're not really a public school because no government regulates them beyond that charter contract they signed with CPS.
I'm glad that's all cleared up.
The larger question is why CMSA even raised these issues in the first place instead of just recognizing the union and negotiating a contract with their teachers.
I tried to ask Ucan during our short phone conversation, but he said he was too busy to talk and directed me to the brief.
It was there I found a down-is-up and up-is-down section in which the school claims to be looking out for workers in states with weak labor laws. If the National Labor Relations Board doesn't take the case from the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board, academy officials argue, the board will risk "disenfranchising hundreds of thousands of employees" from states "unlike Illinois" that "do not offer public sector bargaining laws that permit public employees to organize for purposes of collective bargaining."
In other words, they're actually looking out for the union rights of charter school teachers in union unfriendly states.
That's not how the CMSA teachers see this, of course. From their perspective, school officials are just trying to thwart their organizing efforts. They note that if the NLRB takes jurisdiction, the teachers will have to start collecting signatures from scratch. "It's already been almost a year since we told them we wanted to form a union," said one teacher who didn't want her name used in print. "The longer they drag this out, the more they think they can break our resolve."
In September an NLRB regional officer ruled against academy officials, saying the school is "accountable to CPS" and therefore "a political subdivision of the State of Illinois"—in other words, a public school. Academy officials appealed the ruling to the NLRB's national office. A decision is expected in the coming weeks.
For his part, Moore says he's disappointed with CMSA officials. On April 18, he sent them a letter urging them to stop their "scorched earth" labor practices.
They did not respond.
"I think they're making a tragic mistake here," Moore said. "They're spending a ton of money on lawyers fighting this thing. It's only going to lead to continued acrimony and demoralization. This is just not a way to run a school." 
E-mail Ben Joravsky at Joravsky discusses his reporting weekly with journalist Dave Glowacz at Subscribe to their podcast at the iTunes Store.

Ohio Gulen charter schools sparks strong reaction

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Horizon Cleveland Promotional video- Lies, Lies, and more Lies, Gulen Propagandists at it again

Horizon Science Academy -The Gülen Movement: A New Islamic World Order? -

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.

Gulen Movement manipulates Colleges, to open an Islamic College in Chicago, IL

Gulen moves to manipulate colleges in the USA, deciding how, what and by whom education is given to American Children at all levels (even pre school)   Gulen Movement purchases many chairs at local Universities and has their "talks" at local universities and pay $$ money to members of Academia

Chicago News Cooperative

Return of Islamic College Raises New Questions
Published: May 28, 2011

The American Islamic College, closed since 2004 when the state revoked its operating authority, is expected early next month to win approval to reopen.

Supporters see the opening of the Chicago college, founded in 1981 in the Lakeview neighborhood, as an important step for Islamic instruction in the United States. But its detractors point to the college’s ties to a secretive and far-reaching international movement that has been accused of Islamism in some countries and of an overuse of non-immigrant work visas to hire foreign teachers in its schools in the United States.

The movement, led by Fetullah Gulen, a Turkish religious leader living in self-imposed exile in rural Pennsylvania, supports scores of charter schools that have gained a reputation for academic achievement and a commitment to spreading Turkish language and culture.

Yet the Gulen schools have caused widespread concern about possible manipulation of immigration laws and misallocation of taxpayer dollars. Mr. Gulen, an extremely wealthy and well-connected Turkish spiritual and political leader, fled Turkey amid charges of plotting to overthrow the secular government. He was acquitted of all charges in 2006.

The college would become the second Islamic educational institution in the country to offer college-level credit. For Muslims in the area, it would be a rejoinder to those who depict followers of Islam as prone to extremism.

“It looks like a resurrection of the college, which is great,” said Zaher Sahloul, head of the Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago. “It’s very important to have an institution of higher learning run by the Muslim community.”

Top officials at American Islamic College have been linked to Mr. Gulen’s movement. In a cable obtained by Wikileaks, the United States’ former ambassador to Turkey characterized the Gulen movement as a potentially destabilizing influence in Turkey that more secular Turks see as an effort to bring about an Islamic state.

The Gulen movement, called Hizmet (a Turkish word meaning “service”), promotes public service and education and oversees research institutes, universities, media outlets and one of Turkey’s largest banks. The movement seeks to spread Gulen’s influence internationally through an informal network of 1,000 schools in 130 countries.
Hizmet operates more than 120 publicly financed charter schools in 25 states, in addition to a handful of private schools, like the Science Academy of Chicago, run by Niagara Educational Services, a Mount Prospect firm associated with the Gulen movement. Like many of the movement’s American schools, the Science Academy focuses on math and science.

Administrators of the schools often deny any official connection to the movement, which has no formal organization or official membership but operates through a network of followers, according to Hakan Yavuz, a political science professor at the University of Utah and co-editor of a 2003 book on the organization.

“It’s safe to assume that A.I.C. will be influenced by the Gulen movement,” mainly through the selection of the college’s instructors and administrative staff, Mr. Yavuz said.

“It makes sense for them to hire people from the Gulen community,” he said, “as they have much more knowledge and experience in the American education system.”

According to recent news reports, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Departments of Labor and Education are investigating accusations that as many as 100 of the movement’s American schools have used taxpayer money to pay for the immigration of teachers’ families from Turkey and provide other financial support for the Gulen movement.

Federal officials declined to comment.

Ali Yurtsever, head of the executive committee setting up the American Islamic College, denied any connection with Gulen. The school will have to generate its own income, unlike Gulen schools in the United States that are supported by the movement, he said.

Mr. Yurtsever has long been a follower of Mr. Gulen and serves as administrator of Niagara Educational Services. He previously was president of the Gulen-backed Rumi Forum, a Washington research institute whose honorary president is Mr. Gulen.

Attempts to contact Mr. Gulen through his Web site and through Mr. Yurtsever were unsuccessful.

School officials say the college will present what Mr. Gulen has long stood for: a more moderate form of Islam than the extremist version that has often dominated public debate in the United States since Sept. 11, 2001.

The school plans to offer more than a dozen courses in the fall and hopes to attract up to 400 local and international students in the next few years.

The college was established 30 years ago by the Organization of the Islamic Conference, a Saudi Arabia-based association of more than 50 predominantly Muslim countries. In 2004, the Illinois Board of Higher Education revoked its operating authority, citing a failure to comply with state regulations.

Now, after spending $500,000 from the Islamic Conference to renovate its library, dorms, mosque, and 1,000-seat auditorium, the college is reopening under new management. It is led by Mr. Yurtsever, a mathematician with a Ph.D. from Ege University in Turkey who taught at Georgetown University.
College officials expect to receive authority to offer for-credit courses from the Illinois Board of Higher Education on June 7. The college has applied for full accreditation, which would allow it to confer four-year degrees.

Mr. Gulen, 70, has lived in the United States since 1999, when he left Turkey. In a widely circulated video from that time, he advised his followers to “move within the arteries of the system, without anyone noticing your existence, until you reach all the power centers.”

In the United States, Gulen schools often import Turkish teachers using H-1B visas, which allow American employers to temporarily hire foreign workers in specialty jobs.

The federal government places a strict limit on the number of H1-B visas it issues, and corporations often complain the cap restrains their ability to transfer highly qualified workers from foreign countries. Yet Gulen-backed schools received 839 H-1B visas in 2010, a 65 percent increase from 2007, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Teachers unions and education reform groups in several states have spoken out against the spike in foreign-born teachers at Gulen schools. “There is no reason to bring teachers in from other countries under the guise of lack of staffing,” said Jenni White, president of Restore Oklahoma Public Education.

Mr. Yavuz, the political scientist, said he did not see the movement as a danger, “but I don’t see it as productive. “

“I think their main goal is to improve the image of Islam in the U.S.,” he said, “but even there, I don’t know if they can be successful.”

John Benjamin’s comment posted on 5.26.11 --  FBI Investigation of Gulen Schools (a.k.a., Harmony Science Academies in Texas:

  • In order to understand Fetullah Gulen (FG) movement (FGM), one needs to understand the history of modern Turkey. Ottoman Empire was the flag ship of Islam for centuries. After the fall of empire at the end of WW1, Modern Turkey emerged from the ruins of Ottomans as a muslim but a secular country owing this revolution to M.K.Ataturk, a military general and a statesman. The transition from an Islamic ruler/leader figure to a secular image had some reactions within Turkey and abroad. Radical Islamists have been trying to make Turkey the leader of Islam again after the death of Ataturk in 1938. Turkish Military has been the protector of Secularism for years.
Fetullah Gulen, A Turkish Imam, figured out ]that he needed] to destroy the secularism and bring down the modern Turkey targeting the leaders of the future… Kids! FGM has been providing secret study houses for mostly boarding school kids, picked the talented ones to train them in the selected universities. FGM has taken its time to proceed and reach today’s scale of operations. Secularism in Turkey is about to be demolished by the existing Islamist government whose members are mainly the secret members of the Gulen movement. We will all see a transition of Turkey, a Nato Ally, from being a secular country to another Islamic republic in the middle east very soon.

Why the US government is reaching out and providing opportunities to Gulen movement is because the US government is failing to deal with radical islam. The US goverment is under the impression that the FGM is the answer for moderate Islam since FG pretents to promote dialog among the faiths.

This is a fatal mistake. Because in Islam, there is no Dialog, there is no moderation. Kur’an states and Muslims believe that every human being needs to convert to Islam sooner or later, otherwise, they all deserve to die. This is not a joke, nor a foolish statement. This is what all kids who receives Kur’an training before they reach the age of 12 believe.

As Gulen Schools slowly but surely moves forward in their operations in the US, the main idea is to bring up more gradeuates of FGM who may in the future become the leaders of te US. Fetullah Gulen’s next school, The Harmony School of Political Science in Austin TX, being built is just a clue to prove my point.

This movement needs to be stoped. The US parents need to be warned, educated and made aware of the danger awaiting their children.