Daily Archives: January 31, 2015

Red Clay continues to lose students to charter schools and Red Clay students gain 59 more seats at Charter School of Wilmington

redcalycharterreport2015

Well here is the lasted report of Red Clay students fleeing Red Clay’s traditional schools. Also as you can see, Red Clay students gain 59 more seats at Charter School Wilmington aka a “Red Clay” school. Earlier this year Charter School of Wilmington’s board of directors made an illegal vote that required a formal charter modification that put Red Clay students last on the enrollment preference. However, Red Clay’s school board aka the charter authorizing authority for Charter School of Wilmington order their board to rescind the “illegal” vote. Sure Red Clay traditional schools lost 59 more students to CSW but the fact remains, CSW was designed by Red Clay to serve Red Clay students FIRST! The Red Clay community needs to keep an eye on CSW board of directors who acted in bad faith! And OMG look at Alonso go !!!   

Yep !! Red Clay’s board does a CYA on questionable meeting at Brandywine PTO meeting

During Red Clay’s regular monthly board meeting held January 27, 2015 the board’s Executive Secretary aka Merv added minutes to be approved from the questionable gathering of the school board at January 7, 2015 Brandywine PTO meeting.  Don’t spill your iced tea Steve! I am just making a recap of the previous posts the illegal board meeting 🙂 LOL! Relax, just joking! However, for the record, Merv did the right thing by adding these minutes and I think the board may be a little more conscious of future meetings of such where the board president Kenny pulled an Obama / Markell, I am the king and I’ll do what I want :).  If we’re ever to regain that so-called local control and free ourselves from tyrant Jack Markell and the overreaching arm of the federal government in public education where even the Delaware GOP seems to support, we the people need to question all actions of the school board who serve at the pleasure of the public. 

Red Clay’s high school student uniform push meets student opposition! Now the question is, do their voices count?

Uniforms Proposed for Dickinson and McKean

Students at Thomas McKean and John Dickinson high schools would be required to wear uniform clothing under a proposal presented to the Red Clay Board of Education at its January 27, 2015 meeting.

Citing improvement in school climates at schools nationwide that have adopted uniform policies, Principals Brian Mattix from McKean and Byron Murphy from Dickinson presented the proposal. (See the full proposal here)

Both schools formed a Uniform Committee several months ago, made up of students, parents and teachers. Surveys at both schools revealed that teachers are highly in favor of uniforms, students were opposed, and parents had a small majority in support of uniforms.

School board members noted that Red Clay has not followed other area districts and adopted a system wide uniform policy, preferring that each school create an individual policy that suits its community.  If approved, most secondary Red Clay schools would have a school uniform policy.

Dickinson’s policy would require students to wear golf or polo style shirts in any color, with Dockers, chino, cargo or suit style pants. McKean’s policy would require students to wear the same style pants but wear shirts in green, blue, grey, white or black. When asked about the colors selected, Mattix said his Uniform Committee would consider amending that rule to allow for any color polo shirt.

“We are not looking to be militant,” said Mattix. “You’ll see that reflective in our policies. We are looking for students to have lots of options that are affordable for families.”

Board members expressed concern whether every family can afford the uniform clothing and that students might be suspended from school for not adhering to the policy. Both schools will establish a clothing bank at their schools, for families that cannot afford the clothing.  Furthermore, these clothing banks would have some uniforms on loan for a student who came to school dressed inappropriately.

Both schools will also encourage the wearing of school spirt wear, which Dickinson Principal Murphy said impressed him when he visited Conrad Schools of Science.   The proposal is scheduled for a vote by the school board at its February meeting.

“Students were opposed”. Does it matter to the school board if high school students aka young adult oppose a uniform policy? “Parents had a small majority in support of uniforms”. Sounds shaky to me!! 

Dickinson Survey 

80 parent surveys completed  45 teacher surveys completed  540 student surveys completed  74% of parents had students who attended a school with a uniform in the past  51% of teachers have worked in a school with a uniform

Looks like about 86% of the “540”  Dickinson students oppose (see slide 11) 

McKean

Surveys Completed  89 Parents  738 Students (91%)  56 Teachers  69% of Parents responded that they felt uniforms would reduce bullying  66% of Parents responded that they felt uniforms would reduce peer pressure  47% of Parents responded that uniforms would make finances more challenging  Many students who initially voted against, have been more agreeable after Open Lunch Forums with the principal

So the survey was skewed by the principal interference after the vote! Why wasn’t his Open Lunch Forums open the the entire committee included involved parents? Were it the results of the 2nd student vote? About 64% of McKean students originally opposed. So the principal worked it to get 51% yes? WFT.

Folks at the end of the day the student’s voices doesn’t matter! And shame on Red Clay’s board for not reprimanding McKean’s principal for interference in an open democratic process?

The school board should vote NO and respect the rights of high school students aka free thinking young adults. Perhaps the next attempt for a high school uniform policy should includes the same uniform policy for teachers!   

Delaware State Rep Mary-Jane Keeley’s H.B. #39 creates a new cross bar hotel

Delaware marijuana decriminalization bill introduced Jonathan Starkey, The News Journal

Under the legislation, those caught smoking marijuana in a public place would still face a criminal, unclassified misdemeanor charge, punishable by a $200 fine and up to five days behind bars.

(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person who knowingly or intentionally uses or consumes up to a personal use quantity of a controlled substance or a counterfeit controlled substance classified in § 4714(d)(19) of this title in a public place, except as otherwise authorized by this chapter, shall be guilty of an unclassified misdemeanor and be fined not more than $200 and imprisoned not more than five days.

Counterfeit marijuana? Or wait one minute!!!!!! “4714(d)(19) Any material, compound, combination, mixture, synthetic substitute or preparation which contains any quantity of marijuana or any tetrahydrocannabinols, their salts, isomers or salts of isomers;” OK my bad, I was thrown off by the world “counterfeit”! Poor choice of wording in this section of H.B.#39. Perhaps it should read “or synthetic substitute” classified in 4714(d)(19.). However. looking  at 4714 (d) (26) “Synthetic cannabanoid, which means a substance containing 1 or more of the following chemical compounds “, it might be best to include this section of the law in H.B.#39 as those compounds contain “cannabanoid”.

Personally, I think it may wise to include the AG’s office and a review by law enforcement agencies for their weigh-in before any legislative vote. Then there is the issue of “imprisonment no more than five days”.  I think the $200.00 fine is enough for first offense and the five days be added to second offense followed by five more days for each additional offense there after re: usage in public. Do we have enough jail space re: cross bar hotel for these offenders? The law says, $200.00 “and” imprisonment not more than five days!

I don’t oppose decriminalization of marijuana but caution a legislative vote without a real impact study. Business that do pre-employment and random drug screens need clarification prior to passage of this legislation. I am also very concern that the demand for marijuana will increase with decriminalization creating cash-flow for organized crime involved in the drug trade where street violence is a concern. What I am asking is full clarity of H.B.#39 not just a piece of legislation addressing the nagging social question of  decriminalization and legalization of  marijuana. A big question for Governor Markell, what impact of decriminalization of marijuana have on industry where many created zero tolerance policies confronting usage of marijuana? Many applying for jobs where a pre-employment drug screen are required are excluded for employment because of “trace” amount of marijuana and same goes for random drug screens of current employees. Industry stepped up to protect themselves and yes, worker-comp and insurance liability rates. I wonder if Rep Keeley has the blessing of Delaware employers?      

  

Will Delaware State Legislators be sucked into the next phase of common core re: new school ratings? YEP!

Should Delaware schools get letter grades like kids do? Matthew Albright, The News Journal

Delaware is in the process of developing a new way of reporting school performance on its school accountability “report card.” The new accountability system will be split into two parts.

No Delaware is in the process of supporting another Common Core like push seeded by Arne Duncan. Delaware Liberal and Delaware Way unknowingly exposed an A,B,C,D,F national agenda Posted on by kilroysdelaware.

Once again Delaware state legislators will be baited in to another scheme to push a national agenda that will damage Delaware schools.

The first section includes the measures required by the federal government, including the percentage of students proficient in math and reading on the state standardized test; “college and career readiness” items like SAT scores, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, dual enrollment or trade certifications; and graduation rates.

The second half will include other measures the Department of Education will include based on input from parents and educators, which could include things like school climate surveys, staff attendance, parent attendance at conferences, drop-out rates and progress in closing achievement gaps.

State officials say they want to create a more nuanced system than previous accountability systems like the often-maligned Annual Yearly Progress, which relied mostly on scores on standardized tests.

The Delaware Department of Education over and over demonstrated they lack the capacity to be effective partners in education and for the most part , parents don’t trust DE DOE and knows DE DOE is nothing more than a bunch of Markell political puppets. 

The Department of Education is still working on a design, but officials say one of the chief requirements is that the system needs to be clear and easy for parents to understand.

“This is about providing relevant and transparent information so our families can make the school decisions best for their children,” Secretary of Education Mark Murphy said in a news release

Let’s start with transparent school board meetings and transparent credit-card expenditures by charter schools! It seems all the decision for “families” are made without families! We had a rating system of Superior, Commendable, Academic Review and Watch. What part of “Superior” confused parents? The change is all about creating a “diversion” to kick the can of failure within the Delaware Department of Education and Markell down the road.

Federal rules require states to include some kind of rating system, and Delaware has gone through several incarnations. In the past, the state had school ratings of “superior,” “commendable” and “academic watch,” and a system that named some schools Partnership Zone schools, some Focus schools, and some Reward and Recognition Schools.

There it is, “federal rules”. 

“I do believe the terminology that has been used over the past 10 years or so has changed numerous times, and it has not always been relevant or understandable,” said Mark Holodick, who is chief of the school chiefs association and who, as superintendent in the Brandywine School District, will see his district and its schools rated. “Moving to a transparent, equitable and fair framework is critical.”

Mark were talking about DE DOE and Arne Duncan! Fair and transparent !!!!!!!!! Get real!

Holodick says it’s important that, whatever formula the state comes up with, it factors in the communities and student populations the schools serve. Inner city schools, where teachers help students battle poverty, hunger, and other problems, should simply be rated “worse” than schools in affluent suburban neighborhoods.

“We know the most challenging work, the most difficult work, is that in our schools with high needs populations, and this framework has to strongly consider that,” Holodick said. “What you don’t want is to have a system that is simply aligned with socio-economic status.”

So D’s and F’s for inner city school and A, B and C for suburban schools. At the end of the day without needs based funding we’ll have new labels with the same underlining problems.

The most recent label state officials have assigned is to six inner-city Wilmington “Priority Schools,” which they have targeted for a turnaround. Many teachers in those schools have complained that state and federal officials continue to place labels that make parents believe schools are failing and demoralize students and staff.

“There seems like there is this constant desire to have some kind of metric to rank and rate,” Jenner said. “And I just don’t see the point.”

Well hello Ms Jenner!!!!!!!!!!!! I agree!!!!!!!!!

Bill Doolittle, president-elect of the state PTA, sits on the working group that is developing the system. He agreed that it would be unwise to judge a school based on a letter grade alone, and emphasized that the report card parents receive would include detailed figures to give parents more information.

“Certainly we want parents to look deeper than just a certain letter,” Doolittle said. “And I think that’s the intent of the overall process here, to give parents more information.”

If you this the letter grading is unwise, why is PTA working with state? Why not just say “NO”. Bill the fucking intent is Markell pushing a national common core everything agenda! What next Bill, the same common method of ranking colleges??