Our month of the gaps continues!

MONDAY, JUNE 2, 2014

Below, we start Week 2: Below, our month-long report, “Our month of the gaps,” continues.

This week, we’ll examine the size of the achievement gaps which help define the challenges facing our public schools.

In recent weeks, some journalists and professors have tried to avoid discussing these gaps, which are often large. This strikes us as an unhelpful approach—but then, what else is new?

Next week, we’ll discuss the challenges these gaps create within our public schools. This week, we’ll try to define the size of these gaps, which our loftiest elites have been fudging.

68 comments:

  1. We are 0h-fer on gaps thus far this month. Two posts. No gap stats.

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    Replies
    1. You'll have to settle for long, meandering, artless posts filled with leading questions that ever remain unanswered, with vitriol aimed at liberals, usually women.

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    2. Or you could go someplace else and use your time more productively, if you feel that way about it.

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    3. Shorter 2:34 - "America, love it or leave it."

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    4. Leaving one's place of birth is a lot different than leaving a blog you clearly have no use for.

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    5. Who says I have no use it? Somerby is an absolute hoot with his parody of a serious education blog, and I always get belly laughs from people who don't get his joke.

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    6. How To Stop A Divorce And Save Your Marriage?(Dr.Brave).

      Hello to every one out here, am here to share the unexpected miracle that happened to me three days ago, My name is Jeffrey Dowling,i live in TEXAS,USA.and I`m happily married to a lovely and caring wife,with two kids A very big problem occurred in my family seven months ago,between me and my wife so terrible that she took the case to court for a divorce she said that she never wanted to stay with me again,and that she did not love me anymore So she packed out of my house and made me and my children passed through severe pain. I tried all my possible means to get her back,after much begging,but all to no avail and she confirmed it that she has made her decision,and she never wanted to see me again. So on one evening,as i was coming back from work,i met an old friend of mine who asked of my wife So i explained every thing to her,so she told me that the only way i can get my wife back,is to visit a spell caster,because it has really worked for her too So i never believed in spell,but i had no other choice,than to follow her advice. Then she gave me the email address of the spell caster whom she visited.(bravespellcaster@gmail.com}, So the next morning,i sent a mail to the address she gave to me,and the spell caster assured me that i will get my wife back the next day what an amazing statement!! I never believed,so he spoke with me,and told me everything that i need to do. Then the next morning, So surprisingly, my wife who did not call me for the past seven {7}months,gave me a call to inform me that she was coming back So Amazing!! So that was how she came back that same day,with lots of love and joy,and she apologized for her mistake,and for the pain she caused me and my children. Then from that day,our relationship was now stronger than how it were before,by the help of a spell caster . So, i will advice you out there to kindly email this wonderful man {bravespellcaster@gmail.com},i f you are in any condition like this,or you have any problem related to "bringing your ex back. So thanks to Dr Brave for bringing back my wife,and brought great joy to my family once again.{bravespellcaster@gmail.com} , Thanks..

      Delete
  2. Religious fanatics who hate science and believe in the sky fairy applaud the vile racist Sterling.

    http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2014/06/01/sterling-raises-eyebrows-while-attending-services-at-predominately-black-church-in-south-la/

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  3. Prediction: "Gaps month" will end when the comments begin to number in the single digits, which will probably be soon. I suspect blogger is just waiting for the next racial incident that he can minimize for months on end.

    "Gaps month" will become the new Chapter 7.

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    Replies
    1. One would also hope that Somerby also monitors his traffic count, which might explain the sudden disappearance of Rachel Maddow. He became so unglued and so off the wall it had driven readers off.



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    2. You think his rants about the heinous Hannah-Jones and Imani Perry are glued and on the wall?

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    3. Didn't help that Rachel was pretty much right about Bridgegate.

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    4. And Gov. Ultrasound, who, we must remember, wasn't found to be "heinous" at all.

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    5. How will comments decrease to single digits when KZ posts 3/4 of what appears here and he replies to his own comments?

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    6. 1:19, this story does have an important racial component to it. I'm at a loss as to why liberals are just not interested. Let some screwball lagging third in the polls state legislature candidate make a stupid remark and liberals, including their media, start dancing like puppets on a string. Liberals simply don't know how to address an issue like educational performance.

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    7. 2:12 how does anyone know you are not KZ making another comment?

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    8. They are worried that the explanation for the gaps may be that there are actual racial differences not related to environment. No one wants to open that can of worms because there is no way to discuss it without being called racist or giving aid and comfort to racists who wish to use such differences as justification for unequal treatment. So it is much safer to ignore racial differences and instead pretend the schools need across-the-board improvement, which entails vilifying teachers and ignoring achievements of kids, as Somerby has pointed out.

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    9. Right. "The White Man's Burden." Nothing racist there.

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    10. 2:45 -- you are speaking in code. Who or what are you calling racist, and on what basis?

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  4. Last night John Oliver called for all trolls to visit fcc.gov/comments and support net neutrality. It is in every troll's interest to keep the internet free so that they can post their garbage unfettered, as Somerby permits them to do here.

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    1. I am not certain that you fully understand the "net neutrality" issue if you think it has anything to do with comboxes.

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    2. Who the Sam Hill is John Oliver?

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    3. It has to do with whether internet performance for everyday people using their computers to reply in comboxes will cost more or become slower than services provided today.

      John Oliver has a new political commentary show on HBO (Sunday evenings). He is a British comedian who previously hosted the Daily Show in Jon Stewart's absence.

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    4. No, that's not quite it. Do some more research.

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    5. Why not just tell us what you think "it" is? Are you suggesting we should be opposing net neutrality?

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    6. I think you should do your own research and know what you are talking about before you make up your mind, one way or the other.

      Obviously, you haven't.

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    7. As John Oliver pointed out, the text of the net neutrality bill is dense and the issue itself is complex and inherently boring. Asking people to do their own research benefits those wishing to infringe on net neutrality because the average person isn't up to doing that research. So, I guess we know now which perspective you are representing with your "criticize others but tell people nothing about the bill" approach. If I were a suspicious person, I would assume you are one of the Maddow trolls, killing two birds with one stone by representing the interests of cable as well as her show.

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    8. "Asking people to do their own research benefits those wishing to infringe on net neutrality because the average person isn't up to doing that research."

      Right. Looking for information in an Information Age only benefits the unnamed "them". Let us instead gravitate to the blogs of our tribal choice and let them do our thinking for us, lest poor dumb us who can't possibly understand such a complicated issue get all confused.

      I tend to lean to another old saying: "The truth will set you free." Of course, finding the truth can sometimes require a little effort.

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    9. This is nonsense. Examining ideas by discussing them with others is a useful way of testing what you believe. No one has time to do sufficient research to become an expert on everything they must make a decision about. We have an election tomorrow, for example. I don't think you know anything about this bill or you would have been willing to share. I think you are just here to criticize.

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    10. "No one has time to do sufficient research to become an expert on everything they must make a decision about."

      Nice straw man, but no one is saying you have to become an expert. You might have to do at least some work beyond reading your favorite blogger and letting him decide for you in order to make your own informed decision.

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  5. OMB (And Now for a KZ Free Achievement Gap Comment Box)

    In respone to both public demand and growing BOBfan criticism we offer the following link:

    http://dailyhowler.blogspot.com/2012/02/very-poor-children-very-big-story.html

    Enjoy the comment box. We hope it answers your many questions/allegations/prayers.

    KZ

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    Replies
    1. Hmmmmm, 18 comments on that post. The first four discussing not the "achievement gap" but arguing why there aren't more comments. The last 14 being advertising bots or satires of advertising bots.

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    2. Also, the post launched a five-post series alternately titled "VERY POOR CHILDREN" and "VERY POOR KIDS" included four "parts" and an "interlude."

      In that series, Bob comments on an NYT story about achievement gaps to say that the mainstream media never talks about achievement gaps.

      This went on for a week. Bob's chops seem to have grown stronger now to the point that he can pick up this same discussion once again and keep it going for a month.

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    3. Bob couldn't number any better back then. There were 5 posts but the last one is called Part 4. It did get 5 comments.

      All told the 5 post series on Gaps got 22 comments excluding spam. This one interlude In Gap Series II, or Son of Gap already has 32.

      So much for the argument that the band "KZ and the Trolls" have driven commenters away with their loud obnoxious music.

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  6. Before determining was lacking in the teachers, schools, curriculum, student body at Miss Dent's public schools, figure out the more consequential deprivations in her life, the existence of which would have likely spared her the outcome no exceptional student deserves. What was lacking that would have made any difference was the presence and involvement of the stellar examples who produced her, one absent and the other an overburdened, semi present single mother of four.

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    1. How do you know her father didn't die the year before her senior year in high school? Widows are single mothers too.

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    2. It's possible her father died but that wasn't mentioned in an article that attempts to identify why a student who appeared potentially motivated enough to excel beyond what the school she was sent to taught her couldn't get into a four year college.

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    3. The author's clear agenda was to blame resegregation. She could have disappeared that detail in service to her narrative.

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    4. Yes her "agenda" (my, what a loaded word) was the effect of resegregation at Tuscaloosa Central, and how quickly that happened when the district was released from its desegregation order.

      Bob's panties have been in a wad that instead of going to Tuscaloosa and reasearching and writing the story Hannah-Jones wrote, she should have written only the story that Bob saw about Tuscaloosa safely from his Baltimore perch -- the story about all those wonderful gains kids at the grade level of his choosing have made in the years of his choosing on the form of the test of his choosing.

      Not to mention all those happy kids playing together as shown in all those wonderful PR pictures on the district's Web site.

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    5. 4:38 sez: "It's possible her father died but that wasn't mentioned in an article that attempts to identify why a student who appeared potentially motivated enough to excel beyond what the school she was sent to taught her couldn't get into a four year college."

      I sez: It's possible you died or just didn't pay attention to comments that identified that a student you were told by Somerby could not get into a four year college had actually accepted a scholarship offer to attend such a college before Somerby wrote a single erroneous word about her.


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  7. I continue to believe that this is not fundamentally about race or ethnicity or famliy income. There are poor kids and minority kids who do very well in school. There are non-poor, non-minorities who do badly. The gap between top and bottom is the problem.

    E.g., if the kids in a school's 4th grade are performing at levels ranging from 1st grade to 8th grade, that's a challenge. How do you keep all the kids interested and progressing? How do you make sure the laggards reach an level of literacy and mathematics sufficient to cope in today's society? How do you deal with kids when the level of support from parents varies widely?

    The school needs to deal with these challenges, regardless of the various students' skin color.

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    1. I continue to believe God picked to wrong rib when he created woman.

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    2. For teh easily confuded I should have said "two" insted of "to/"

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    3. Slavery cannot possibly have residual effects today.

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    4. No living person caused any residual effects. When in history, ours or anyone else's, was there not brutality?
      How else can you explain our insistence on, and continued free exercise of our Second Amendment Rights? It is there to protect what our Creator granted us.

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    5. David, you sound like you think schools should produce exactly the same outcome for everybody (eliminate all gaps), instead of encouraging all students to acquire some minimum level of proficiency for graduation. Do you think gifted kids should be ignored or held back until they reach the same level as non-gifted? Do you think all the focus should be on bringing the bottom kids up closer to the middle? That is what your comment implies.

      You cannot consider gaps without considering why they occur because the reasons for the gaps dictate what you do to address them. If a child is underperforming because of a lack of motivation, that is very different than if a child is underpeforming because of a learning disability, because of emotional or psychological problems, because of difficulties in the home (parental divorce, illness), or because of an abusive parent. You cannot focus solely on the gaps as you suggest because these other factors are important. If these factors affect different groups of children differently, then their group membership becomes an indicator of what approach might be important with them. If a child has a Spanish surname and doesn't talk much in class, it might be appropriate to consider whether the child has language deficits in English, for example.

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    6. "I continue to believe that this is not fundamentally about race . . ."

      I recall the words of former Sen. Dale Bumpers in defense of William Jefferson Clinton during the impreachment trial:

      "When they say it's not about the money, it's about the money."

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    7. AnonymousJune 2, 2014 at 4:38 PM -- You make some reasonable points. If all educators were as sensible as you are, there would be fewer problems in the schools.

      However, some educators are too ready to impose "solutions" based on ethnicity. E.g., consider the disaster of multi-lingual education. This program had so much support that schools were encouraging Spanish surname children to enter the program, even if they already had decent English skills.

      The reality is that immigrant children immersed in English pick it up quickly. (My father, who came to the US at age 10 was one such example.) Many children stuck in the multi-lingual programs never became fluent in English. Sadly, once these programs got started, they developed a constituency of administrators and teachers who kept the program going, even after it was clear just how much damage it was doing.

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    8. To be clear, I'm talking about programs whereby a large portion of the school day was taught in the student's own language.

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    9. Please name the educators who impose "solutions" based on ethnicity. Please indicate whether these solutions are final.

      Please list the schools that place in bilingual programs those children who speak English fluently but have Spanish surnames.

      Please document how many children in bilingual programs never become fluent in English.

      Please detail the damage you claim these programs are doing outside your own head.

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    10. deadrat -- read this article from the NY Times. Here are some quotes:

      ...giving parents of children who speak little English the right to move them into a range of new classes that emphasize instruction in English rather than in native languages....the board reversed the long-standing policy that assumed that students who spoke little English should be placed in bilingual classes Many wise parents wanted their children in English language classes, but they weren't permitted this option until this modification

      In the last three years, voters in California and Arizona overwhelmingly decided to effectively end bilingual education in those states, requiring all public schools to teach their classes in English and shortening transitional programs for immigrant students. I recall the reporting when Calif made this change. By then, even Latino leaders had realized the harm done by bilingual ed and were pushing to end it.

      A Board of Education study commissioned by Irving S. Hamer Jr., the Manhattan representative on the board who is chairman of the subcommittee on bilingual education, showed that just 45 percent of the students who entered the bilingual programs in middle school and 15 percent of those who entered in high school achieved sufficient English proficiency to leave those classes during their school career. I think this speaks for itself. Hundreds of thousands of unlucky Hispanic immigrant children never became proficient in English because of this well-meaning program.

      It would be funny, if it weren't so tragic, that a program that did so much harm to Hispanics was developed In New York State in response to a lawsuit by Aspira, a Hispanic civil rights group.

      Being the son of an immigrant, I feel pretty passionate about this issue. It's lucky for my father that schools in 1920 did what they could to help immigrants learn English rapidly.

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    11. The point of bilingual education is to keep kids from falling behind in other subjects while learning English.

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    12. These were political decisions not academic ones. Teachers were unhappy about the dismantling of bilingual education in California.

      You can teach kids to swim by tossing them in the deep end but that isn't the best method. It can be hard on the kids and leave scars. The nuns used to hit any kid caught speaking Spanish on the playground. That technique produced a lot of monolingual non-native English speakers who might have been bilingual -- an advantage in California. And it left emotional scars

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    13. I don't know about swimming or corporal punishment. But, my understanding is that if a kid is thrown into an English-speaking class and is given appropriate instruction in English, he will learn English rapidly. Wikipedia says, In the 2009 U.S. Supreme Court decision, Horne v. Flores, the majority opinion stated, "Research on ELL [English language learners] instruction indicates there is documented, academic support for the view that SEI [structured English immersion] is significantly more effective than bilingual education. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Structured_English_Immersion

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    14. "if a kid is thrown into an English-speaking class ...."

      Alito made this conclusion based upon the results of the 2002-2003 school year and cherrypicked from a study encompassing eight years.

      Here's Breyer:

      And, most importantly, there was evidence that the optimistic improvement in the number of students completing the English-learning program was considerably overstated. See Tr. 37 (Jan. 18, 2007) (stating that the assessment test used in 2005 and 2006, when dramatic improvements had been reported, was significantly less “rigorous” and consequently had been replaced). The State’s own witnesses were unable firmly to conclude that the new system had so far produced significantly improved results. Tr. 112–113 (Jan. 11, 2007) (stating that “at some point” it would be possible to tell how quickly the new system leads to English proficiency (emphasis added)).

      You couldn't avoid mendacity if you life depended on it.

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  8. Susan Rice, said on ABC that Bowe Bergdahl "served the United States with honor and distinction" and that "Sergeant Bergdahl wasn't simply a hostage; he was an American prisoner of war captured on the battlefield"

    Technically he did serve with honor the day he signed up since he didn't serve with dishonor that day, and technically he served with distinction since desertion is an act distinct from normal service, and technically he was captured on the battlefield if we consider locations to which deserters desert to be included in the battlefield.

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    1. That said, for ourselves, we don't know.

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  9. All of our children see race. They see the differences in the way we are depicted and treated. They see the gaps in our socioeconomic conditions that are so highly influenced by race. When we don’t talk to them about race and inequality, the only way they have to make sense of it all is to assume that there is a greater human value for those who by accident of birth are white

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    1. the only way they have to make sense of it all is to assume that there is a greater human value for those who by accident of birth are white

      They would assume that society places a greater human value on people unlike them.. But, that doesn't mean that they have to accept that society's value system is objectively correct. In fact, many people found that sort of situation provided extra motivation to succeed.

      Group after group in America were poorer and/or were looked down upon by society, yet over time they managed to outdo the majority at education and at earning. E.g., Nigerians, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, Kenyans, Jews, gays, Mormons, Cubans. These people were motivated to work harder because they were looked down on.

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    2. The shorter David in Cal: My experience universal. Bootstraps good. Gav Nigerian Jews good. native-born black Americans bad.

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    3. The Dinkster's tried-and-true formula for improving academic performance of "those people": they will perform better if we keep them poor, downtrodden, and viewed with contempt.

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  10. My father, born in the United States, spoke a foreign language until he was six years old and went to school. All instruction was in English; he fondly remembered the teacher who helped him. He graduated at the top of his elementary and high school classes. After my grandmother died, the family made the decision to speak English exclusively. He spoke American English like a native, but unfortunately forgot his ancestral language. Anyway, it was a regional variety, not a national language.

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    1. As a child, born in the United States, I went to an all white school that was not segregated because no black people lived in the district due to deed restrictions. My parents both spoke English, but were already on their second marriage and divorced when I was in fourth grade. I fondly remember my fourth grade teacher. She was Mexican American and took it upon herself to teach the kids she had (she had the "accelerated" 4th grade class) Spanish as a second language. She had no materials since it was not a district sanctioned instructional item.

      With no father in the home I managed to excel in school, but no colleges came calling to recruit me in my "segregated" high school. I only applied to one college. They accepted anyone with an 1000 or higher on the SAT if you were in the top half of your class. If you scored below not you had to work your way in by passing summer school. Tuition was $ 4 a semester hour. I graduated with honors and went on to a post graduate degree.

      My parents are long dead. My fourth grade teacher was fired.

      I can speak Spanish. White privilege.

      Delete

  11. How To Stop A Divorce And Save Your Marriage?(Dr.Brave).

    Hello to every one out here, am here to share the unexpected miracle that happened to me three days ago, My name is Jeffrey Dowling,i live in TEXAS,USA.and I`m happily married to a lovely and caring wife,with two kids A very big problem occurred in my family seven months ago,between me and my wife so terrible that she took the case to court for a divorce she said that she never wanted to stay with me again,and that she did not love me anymore So she packed out of my house and made me and my children passed through severe pain. I tried all my possible means to get her back,after much begging,but all to no avail and she confirmed it that she has made her decision,and she never wanted to see me again. So on one evening,as i was coming back from work,i met an old friend of mine who asked of my wife So i explained every thing to her,so she told me that the only way i can get my wife back,is to visit a spell caster,because it has really worked for her too So i never believed in spell,but i had no other choice,than to follow her advice. Then she gave me the email address of the spell caster whom she visited.(bravespellcaster@gmail.com}, So the next morning,i sent a mail to the address she gave to me,and the spell caster assured me that i will get my wife back the next day what an amazing statement!! I never believed,so he spoke with me,and told me everything that i need to do. Then the next morning, So surprisingly, my wife who did not call me for the past seven {7}months,gave me a call to inform me that she was coming back So Amazing!! So that was how she came back that same day,with lots of love and joy,and she apologized for her mistake,and for the pain she caused me and my children. Then from that day,our relationship was now stronger than how it were before,by the help of a spell caster . So, i will advice you out there to kindly email this wonderful man {bravespellcaster@gmail.com},i f you are in any condition like this,or you have any problem related to "bringing your ex back. So thanks to Dr Brave for bringing back my wife,and brought great joy to my family once again.{bravespellcaster@gmail.com} , Thanks..

    ReplyDelete


  12. Hello, my name is Miss faith, I'm from USA. I want to inform you all that there is a spell caster that is genuine and real. I never really believed in any of these things but when I was losing Garvin, I needed help and somewhere to turn badly. I found consultant.odia spells and i ordered a LOVE SPELL. Several days later, my phone rang. Garvin was his old self again and wanted to come back to me! Not only come back, the spell caster opened him up to how much I loved and needed him. Spell Casting isn't brainwashing, but they opened his eyes to how much we have to share together. I recommend anyone who is in my old situation to try it. It will bring you a wonderful surprises as well as your lover back to you. The way things were meant to be." you can contact the spell caster on ogbonispelitemple@hotmail.com he's very nice and great.

    ReplyDelete