"The district, which first denied to SW that it is scaling back tours, later conceded that it is doing so after being told about principal remarks like Carter's. "We believe that as the new assignment plan is implemented, the need that families feel to visit multiple schools will probably decrease," said spokesperson Patti Spencer-Watkins."
The ink on the plan is barely dry. The Board hasn't voted on the transition plan. So I'm thinking the district is just a little ahead of itself except, of course, if they want to give parents the impression that they have NO choice in schools. That, of course, is wrong.
"Some tours will still happen, although they have been confusingly renamed "visits." But many schools will only offer one or two, instead of four or five or more, as used to be the case. The district has made this change quietly and without explanation."
It's interesting because this month's Schoolbeat reports:
"Daytime school visits will also be offered and a schedule will be published soon."
So what I was told was that the principals met with Dr. Goodloe-Johnson and she either said no tours or maybe tours but only after Open Houses. No matter what she said, her message was to minimize tours. Unfortunately for her, some principals either:
- didn't get the message and have scheduled the regular 3-4 tours plus the Open House
- realized what NOT having tours would mean to them and the school secretaries i.e. lots of confused and upset parents calling them daily
"which first denied to SW that it is scaling back tours, later conceded it is doing so..."
There have been tours in this district as far back as I can remember. Not all schools had them but usually only because they had no PTA or parents to do them.
Dr. Goodloe-Johnson is certainly within her rights as Superintendent to say "no tours or just one". However, she is being disrespectful to both staff and parents by NOT announcing this outright. If it's so important to the SAP and yet it is totally different from what has been done in the past, wouldn't you think it would be announced?
No, she wants this SAP to roll out her way. To me, this is a throwdown to the Board. They should tell her, in no uncertain words, that again, she has the right to decide how the plan rolls out AND they don't want to micromanage every detail but she has to do it with transparency and in consideration to what has gone on in the past.
If they do not let her know this (and I would prefer in public so that we all know it happens), then she will take this as a sign of weakness from the Board. I know I will because that means that she will treat parents with disrespect and a lack of consideration. I plan on mentioning this at the Board community meetings this weekend (Carr, DeBell and Sundquist).
You better believe she walked through several schools looking for a place for her own child. Everyone deserves that option and if not, at least the notification about any change.
(Update: one odd thing. I've done a little spot-checking of Open Houses at various schools. What is odd is that some schools are advertising them as open houses for current families while others as open houses for visitors. It could be one busy night if both groups show up.)