State board of ed: Give us the redistricting bottom line number; Matthew Albright, The News Journal
What’s in the plan?
The WEIC plan is almost 200 pages long and proposes a swath of sweeping changes to how the state manages and funds public schools. Here are some highlights:
• In Wilmington, the Christina School District would give all of its schools and students in the city limits to the Red Clay School District, a move commission members say will create a more unified vision for the city’s schools.
• WEIC originally wanted Colonial, which operates no schools in the city limits, to give its Wilmington students to Red Clay too. But it relented after protests from the Colonial School Board.
• Schools statewide would get extra state funding if they have high concentrations of students in poverty or learning English as a second language. That’s a move to close the large, long-standing gap in academic performance between at-risk kids and other students.
• Property taxes could be re-assessed, something that hasn’t happened since the 1970s or 1980s, depending on the county. WEIC leaders say the long out-of-date assessments have played havoc with the local money school districts raise through property taxes and caused some folks to pay more than their property is really worth.
• The state would take steps to better coordinate the work of nonprofits that serve youth, tying them more closely to the work going on in school buildings.
This radical “harmful” change isn’t needed and is too costly!
I didn’t waste my time attending any of these bullshit Governor Markell inspired meetings! Markell the so-called change agent has done more to damage Delaware’s public education than all governors before him combined! Sorry to say this but here goes, having Delaware’s Governor Jack Markell leading the charge on public school reform that addresses the needs of black children, is like inviting the KKK to each and every black child’s christening. The only race the won Race to The Top is the white Wall Street race! Again, why is it a bunch of white male billion and millionaires are setting the agenda to reform public education for the benefit of black children? Every time there is a movement to reform public education to improve education for black children it ends up with more administrators and more consultants and never tangible means to effectively reduce class sizes such as more teachers and paraprofessionals ? Governor Jack Markell owns the Delaware Department of Education and the Delaware State Board of Education including Heff! Right now its all a pony and dog show and at the end of the day Governor Jack Markell wins! A major victory for his white Wall Street profiteers feeding of the backs of our high poverty children.
Wilmington’s problems are Wilmington’s problems! And the answering are within the Wilmington community. Red Clay does not have the capacity or will to do what is right for black students! Harsh but true! They created Conrad a all Choice magnet school that caused the shifting of feeder-patterns sending Alban Park and Robinson Lane children whom most are minority and high poverty to schools further from home. And the sick part of it all, buses carrying them drive right past Conrad. Red Clay shifted high concentrated pockets of poverty student to other schools like Skyline without putting resources in place. Conrad wasn’t “turned around”! What happen was, out with the blacks in with the whites!
As I stated before, my family has lived in what is know as Red Clay for over 100 years and the racist are chameleons blending in the background within the system. The inception of charter schools was seeded to appease affluent white parents. The Neighborhood Schools Act is a masquerade party to justify building new suburban schools serving predominately white children while not building traditional middle and high schools in Wilmington. Wilmington Red Clay propriety owners are building schools for white suburban students while their own suffers. Red Clay, “we had to build those schools to be compliant with The Neighborhood Schools Act.” Yet fuck the black kids in Wilmington. Why do Wilmington leaders want to hand their children over to Red Clay?
Per the WEIC data, Christina’s School District Low Income “City” ELA academic proficiency performance was 38% whereas, Red Clay’s was 41%. Such radical change because of 3% variance? Math , Red Clay 36% and Christina 33%. Where is the fire??
If you want to use the analogy Wilmington Christina’s black students are “trapped” in failing schools, one must say the same about Red Clay.
The fallout from the Neighborhood School Act that leaned in favor of white students created de facto segregation in Wilmington. The issues at hand are race driven and we need to defuse de facto segregation.
The best solution to defuse de facto segregation is addressing the flawed Choice school law. Transportation or lack of is a major hindrance for Wilmington’s children of poverty. The cost to add preferential Choice transportation for Wilmington children wishing to choice out of the city is far less complex than WEIC. Also, Wilmington’s middle and high school student should get preferential Choice seating over in district suburban students and their siblings. Changes in the Choice school laws adding preferential Choice transportation will ease de facto segregation.
As far a WEIC going forward! Lets be clear about one thing, Charter School of Wilmington has been leasing “unused” traditional school space at the old Wilmington High School. So if WEIC moves forward that space is now “needed” for Red Clay’s traditional city high school students. The Red Clay lease with CSW isn’t a 99 year lease. CSW needs to move! Why build a new city high school when one is already in place! Furthermore, once Wilmington High returns , Dickinson and McKean will be way under capacity. We could combined both schools and move CAB into the other. This could help create a 6-12 traditional school configuration at Wilmington High School. As for those narrow minded people thinking current Christina city elementary students will be transferred to Red Clay suburban schools, you better think twice! It won’t happen!
Governor Markell held the door open for the Race to The Top, Common Core Standards and The Smarter Balanced Assessment Wall Street laced Trojan Horse that harms black students. So why trust this CAPITALIST with re-engineering public education for city kids under WEIC. Yea yea I know, all the stakeholders were at the WEIC table! But look who built the table! Jack Markell and some of his greenback seeking crew from Wilmington.
The success of every child black, white and all shades is between starts with parents willing to engage and hold “their” child accountable as do our Asian parents! Will Wilmington parents be more accountable with the Red Clay . Christina merger? Hell NO!