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Opinion & Essays - Sep, 1999 Issue #61 

Report from the Annual Conference of

[I visited Madison, Wisconsin on July 29-31, 1999 to visit this year’s AEPP Conference, EDVentures ’99. (Contact: Chris Yelich, Ex. Dir. 920-206-1474 cyelich@aepp.org). The AEPP is aiming to be the trade organization for private education. At the present time the main source of their membership seems to be Charter Schools (many working with at-risk kids), learning centers and some education investors, most of whom are focusing on government out- sourcing for services. Although members come from throughout the US and Canada, the Midwest is especially well represented at the present time. For those of us who attended who are more familiar with the IECA and NATSAP Conferences, that is, Judi and Alan Robinovitz, Tim Brace, Elliot Sainer, John Powers and myself, this conference was significantly different. Though they discussed many of the same problems with which we are familiar, they used a different slant, reflecting somewhat different experiences. The leaders of AEPP are interested in reaching out to Educational Consultants and Parent Choice private schools and programs and are talking about these interests being represented in the program next year. I found my time at this conference worthwhile, and I intend to remain involved. Anyone wanting more information on this organization can contact Executive Director Chris Yelich. –Lon)

Comments Overheard at EDVentures ‘99:
This whole discussion is still about other people’s children.’ ‘The Echo Boom demographics show probably an increase in percentages of children at-risk, as well as an increase in absolute numbers.’ ‘There are significant increases in the numbers and needs of at-risk children.’ Services for adjudicated youth are becoming more oppressive through stripped down services.’

‘There currently is some, and needs to be more, consolidation in this fragmented market.’

‘There is an increase in out-sourcing by public schools for counselors, special Ed Teachers, etc.’

‘KidsOne estimated 9 million children are in one of four at- risk categories. And, there are 2 million latchkey kids every day in the US.’

‘This is a $60 billion industry with a slow movement toward blended care.’

‘The Internet is going to democratize education.’

‘Distance learning is tearing down the walls on everything.’

‘Charter Schools often are going to at-risk/drop-out students to avoid competing with public schools.’

‘You can’t open up a system of choice, without something to choose from.’

Copyright © 1999, Woodbury Reports, Inc. (This article may be reproduced without prior approval if the copyright notice and proper publication and author attribution accompanies the copy.)

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