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View Diary: on "parent triggers" in public schools (90 comments)

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  •  Unfortunately, I live in Fauquier County (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ohkwai, ManhattanMan, Focusmarker

    where the public schools are not so good.  Because the School Board and the county are run primarily by Republicans, our teachers are the lowest paid of any of the surrounding counties. The majority of our teachers are relatively inexperienced and once teachers get a few years of experience under their belt, they leave for higher paying jobs in Prince William, Loudouin or Fairfax counties.  In order to keep their pledge of "no new taxes" the Republican Board of Supervisors and School Board just eliminated all Middle School Sports and all Middle School and High School Orchestra ensembles.  

    Of course they are very high on Abstinence Education and pay a remarkable amount of money for abstinence programs.  They also like to keep students motivated by fear.  For example, my daughter's 11th grade AP Language teacher gave the students the most recently released AP language test as a benchmark.  OK--no problem with that.  Then he counted it as a test grade for the grading period.  When I asked him the pedagogical purpose of this insanity, he said that the English department had decided that students needed to be motivated (because, as everyone knows, the AP students are slackers).

    The American History teacher (and high school football coach) told the students in his class last week that he hated both candidates for President.

    Most students who want any hope of doing well on the math section of the SAT have math tutors (who cost from 65-100 dollars per hour).  

    Anyone who wants to see what happens when radical Republicans control the school system in a county, move to Fauquier County VA with your school aged children.  You will be tearing out your hair in frustration with the rest of us soon enough.

    While I agree with everything you said about the movie, Teacherken, I can also sympathize with parents who are at their wits end over how their public schools are run.  I don't want to takeover my child's school, I want to see a Board of Supervisors and a School Board who care more about children's education than they do about saving their rich Republican pals a few bucks in local taxes.  

    What our public schools need are motivated engaged parents who vote and candidates who care more about the quality of public education than about ridiculous tax pledges or running schools like businesses.  

    Feminism is the radical notion that women are people. ~Cheris Kramarae and Paula Treichler

    by Tchrldy on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 06:14:53 AM PDT

    •  It sounds like you guys... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gramofsam1

      ...could benefit from Parent Triggers and Charters.

      If parents in Fauquier County had more power to choose, they could demand more progressive education.

      They could start Charters that teach real science and have arts and sports -- and use County money to pay for them.

      Anti-reformers love to complain about charter schools run by right-wing creationists. But what about when the right-wingers win elections and take over the Public Schools?

      In that case, Charters become a lifeboat.

      •  I don't think charter schools are the answer (5+ / 0-)

        Parents need to vote out Republican County Supervisors and School Board members who consistently vote for austerity on the backs of our children to placate their Republican pals. Parents need to demand that our children's teachers be paid a livable wage so we can attract experienced teachers who can explain math to the entire class so all students can understand the concepts rather than just those students who have tutors.  After school tutoring programs should be the norm in our communities with both paid staff and volunteers.  These things will only happen if parents get involved both in voting for county supervisors who are willing to put their money where their mouth is and getting rid of the tea partiers on our school board.  

        Feminism is the radical notion that women are people. ~Cheris Kramarae and Paula Treichler

        by Tchrldy on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 08:13:05 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It sounds like they could benefit (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mostel26

        from organizing a better slate of candidates for school board and getting them elected.

        It would probably be easier, cost less money, and bonus, would help all the kids.

        Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

        by elfling on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 10:40:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  There's a relevant response inside... (0+ / 0-)
        Anti-reformers love to complain about charter schools run by right-wing creationists. But what about when the right-wingers win elections and take over the Public Schools?

        Groucho says it all...

        •  Don't be snarky. (0+ / 0-)

          Did you not just read Tchrldy's comment?

          This actually happens. Haven't you heard of certain states mandating semi-creationism, abstinence-only sex ed, climate denial, ect.?

          Public Schools are run by elected officials. Tell me (for example) which of the 47 Republican Senators you would trust your child to? Jim Inhofe? Rand Paul?

          •  Chicken Little. (0+ / 0-)
            Anti-reformers love to complain about charter schools run by right-wing creationists. But what about when the right-wingers win elections and take over the Public Schools?

            In that case, Charters become a lifeboat.

            Senators don't create local school policy, local school boards do. Local school boards generally reflect the local population.
          •  It is the responsibility of the people (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Mostel26

            to choose good representatives for their government, and this includes schools.

            It is an easy matter in most places to run for school board.

            And even where it is not, the organization required to affect a school board is less than that for a parent trigger.

            Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

            by elfling on Fri Sep 28, 2012 at 09:35:23 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  I'm still stuck on the AP teacher... (0+ / 0-)

      He gave the AP practice as a benchmark. I get that. I do that as an AP Lang teacher myself, but doesn't this fool realize that all he's done is penalize kids for all the things they didn't know because he hasn't taught them that yet? If they knew everything, they wouldn't be in the class.

      Yeah, I'd have a conversation with an administrator if this were my child.

      "If they give you ruled paper, write the other way" Juan Ramon Jimnez

      by Teiresias70 on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 02:31:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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