In celebration of my 3000+ blog posts I’ve decided to use Perry’s response comment as the 3000th blog post. I started blogging way back in 2007 but got pissed and discouraged and deleted my blog only to be encouraged to come back. So the + = all the post I deleted.
Indeed, “kavips rocks.” Let us face the fact that forced busing to strive for integration is not working in Delaware.
Therefore, going back to the old neighborhood school approach, with money infusion from the State, makes a lot of sense for reasons already stated. Moreover, RTTT, while it lasts, should be focused on the inner city schools.
We should look at this as a long term investment which will probably take at least a generation before significant improvement occurs. A corollary result will be the eventual rebuilding and refurbishing of the inner city.
I also favor reducing Delaware to one school district, one superintendent, with three sub area districts each with an assistant superintendent, one per county.
This is the way the Fairfax County School District in Northern Virginia is organized, as mentioned in previous posts on Delaware Liberal. FCPS has about as many students as our entire State, organized with the neighborhood school approach. The result: high quality schools, very few private schools, and no charter schools.
I confess to not understanding the history of Delaware K-12 schools and their problems and challenges, but I see a terribly fragmented system in the northern part of our State, as described in posts here and on DL, with a plethora of charters and privates to further complicate attempts to focus on improving our public schools, as Pandora and Kilroy and several others have made their top priority.
I congratulate these people for trying to come up with a better plan for the future of our public schools. I hope Governor Markell and his DOE are paying attention!
My family has been in what’s known as Red Clay School District for 100 years going back to the good old days when teachers classroom authority was respected even in racially divided school system via segregation. Parents of all nationalities and ethnic backgrounds want the same quality education for their children .Desegregation did have an impact on our community and some want to blame desegregation for all of the problems in our public schools. That is not the case! The problems we have are a direct relationship to poor leadership of our education system starting at the top and the real victims are teachers whom many of us value and children whom many of us love. There are those in Red Clay who want to move Red Clay back to those wonderful neighborhood school days which sounds wonderful! However, as Red Clay continues to recreate that dream by building new schools, Red Clay only builds those schools in the suburbs. To this day Red Clay buses Wilmington students to and from middle and high school schools in the suburbs. Obviously we know Wilmington has a high concentration of African-American and Latino /Hispanic students whom a fair share are high poverty. Red Clay does not have “traditional” middle or high schools in the city of Wilmington. Therefore, Red Clay has forced busing via assigned feeder-patterns even at that if one were to examine those assigned feeder-pattern they would see inequity in school assignments. Red Clay seems to claim they have to adhere to the Neighborhood Schools Act which freed district students from force busing (as it was called) but in reality kept some student trapped on the bus. They hide behind the law as justification for the referendum request for “another” new school in the Pike Creek / Hockessin area! However, their excuse for not affording neighborhood middle and high schools to Red Clay city residents (students) is, they have new schools called charters. Charter schools have selective admission practices that even Governor Markell called ,”creaming and skimming of students”. I feel Red Clay isn’t owning up to the spirit of the Neighborhood Schools Act and their own plan submitted to the Delaware State Board of Education which was approved. Since that plan Red Clay made some changes in various schools and to their Choice school policies. Honestly, some of us are questioning those policies with serious concerns!
Red Clay does not provide the data as to the financial operational pressures of an additional school via a capital referendum. Once the school is built it needs heat, maintenance, custodial staff, cafeteria workers and ongoing maintenance which will come from existing operational and minor capital funds. In another words, Red Clay will need an “operational referendum” sooner than later. Red Clay has entered a financial cycle of deficit spending.
Red Clay’s plan for this new school has many unanswered questions and has raised concerns to the extent of civil rights concern. If Red Clay uses it’s tactful resources to get it’s way they could be stoking another court intervention. There is a perception that may be well founded that affluent parents has greater voice in changes suiting them than less affluent parents who many are of high poverty status. Affluent parents tend to dictate their needs whereas with less affluent parents their needs seem to be dictated to them. Again, I said, “there is a perception”. I asked that on this Tuesday February 28, 2012 you join others and say “NO” to Red Clay dream list of adding another school in the suburbs.
I do ask that you support the separate question for needed repairs and upgrades to existing Red Clay schools. We have that responsibility as a community to maintain what we have. So please vote for repairs and upgrades for existing Red Clay schools and NO to a new schools. You and I know in these hard economic times every dime counts. Those comments of the Referendum being equal to a cup of coffee a day is getting old! Over the years we’ve paid for the coffee, coffee pot and the stove it’s cooked on! For many of us we actually drink less coffee to make ends-meat. So once again join me in supporting those repairs and upgrade and in saying no to a school not needed.
It makes good business sense to support a district capital referendum when school leaders have made a strong and common-sense case for the additional funding. We believe that the Red Clay Consolidated School District has made such a case and we urge you to vote for the referendum on Feb. 28. Both of us live in the Red Clay district and will vote for both the renovations and the new school. It’s not only the practical thing to do; it’s the right thing to do.
Long regarded as an innovator, Red Clay has launched some of the most successful and high-profile schools in the state, from approving the Charter School of Wilmington to creating magnet programs at Cab Calloway School of the Arts and Conrad Schools of Science.
OK now that the Kool-aid speech is over let’s get to a real concern.
Our goal is to help the children of Shortlidge and Warner elementary schools improve their academic achievement and the ability to practice healthy behaviors. With a whole child approach, the pilot program consisted of professional development for teachers and securing a host of supports for children and their families. The pilot eventually became part of Delaware’s successful Reach to the Top application made to the federal Department of Education.
Help Warner and Shortlidge children practice healthy behaviors! WTF does that mean? There we go with Race to The Top a plan! Warner parents and Delaware didn’t have meaning participation is the design of the grant application. It was only after the application was submitted by the Delaware Department of Education and after Red Clay school board was boxed in the corner to vote for the RTTT MOU with the exception of Becnel did parents become part of the conversation. DOE Dan told Red Clay to sign or else the local taxpayers would fund RTTT programingrthat was aligned with state regulations. Red Clay failed to follow Title 1 Section 1118 on Race to The Top and the Tech for America program. We hear the call for high effective teacher in out poorest schools yet Red Clay puts recent college graduates who are not education majors and puts them through a five week summer boot camp. Come to this event to hear the truth about how parents rights were high-jacked Title 1 Conference Education Forum by Friends of Title 1, March 3, 2012
It seems the letter writers aren’t concern with the social issues and the civil rights ramification associated with Red Clay’s desire for a new school in the Hockessin area. Do they support the one way force busing for city kids to Red Clay clay middle and high schools? I think the Academia Antonia Alonso proposed dual language charter school that will be located a few blocks from Red Clay dual language school Lewis is testimony to the fact Red Clay cannot connect with the social and ethnicity of the community. Perhaps Red Clay sees some of it city schools as a burden and with their praise of existing charter schools as neighborhood schools Red Clay is saying the it knows best for Wilmington’s children and ethic culture!
It’s kind of ironic that the title of Fred and Karen’s letter is “Those ’empty’ classrooms hold hope for children’s future”. If the there were empty seats why does Red Clay want to build a new school? Seems like they are saying empty seats must be reserve with high poverty minorities and new seats must be build for the more affluent white counterparts who refuse to be bused into the available Red Clay seats with in Wilmington. Is their two school district within Red Clay where the boundaries start and end at Wilmington city limits?
I support the referendum question that provides repairs and upgrades to all Red Clay schools that include city schools but I will NOT vote for the new school that continues the Red Clay divide of the haves and have-nots! We are one Red Clay community and Wilmington children deserves equity!
The pilot eventually became part of Delaware’s successful Reach to the Top application made to the federal Department of Education.
It’s called Race to the Top! I know. I need a proofreader but come on you’re educated and I’m just the town idiot with a GED and a pocketful of college credits
If Gov. Jack Markell is successful, Delaware students will begin learning a second language much earlier than Moore — as early as kindergarten. The effort is meant to help Delaware graduates be more competitive in the workforce.
State plans call for 20 schools over the next five years to launch immersion-language programs for students in kindergarten and first grades. Four first-year programs were selected this month. They will start instruction in languages identified as being key in the workforce: Mandarin Chinese and Spanish. In 2012, about $1.9 million is budgeted for the program. Another $1.9 million is in the governor’s proposed fiscal 2013 budget.
This is insane! How is teaching kindergarten and elementary students a second language going to help them meet the standards? Diverting money from helping at-risk students is just another wrongheaded Jack Markell agenda. Poor parents have enough problems trying to help their children with English homework
How about taking that new found money and restoring the money you robbed from local traditional and charter school transportation funding? How about restoring the Minner Reading and Math teachers?
This so amazing that here we are with public schools failing where charter schools are the save all answer because student are failing to meet the proficiency of state standards in English and Markell pisses away more money.
Looks like Jack Markell is part of the master plan to create a two class system in Delaware! Do you really think at-risk students in kindergarten and elementary school need a second language Jack ?
Experts say the best time to learn a second or third language is as a child
So why is the Delaware Department of Education failing to teach children their home language of English?
Why not take that $1.9 million dollars and give it to the school districts and charter schools to buy digital recording equipment to record their board meeting so parents, community, legislators and Delaware DOE can hear what’s really going on! And guess what there will be $$$ change!