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I'm usually one for cutting staff and administration, especially in harder times, but there really should be one more paid, independent, position. The board should have a full-time staff person whose job it is is to fact-check, get answers to the "hey, we'll get back to you but really never will" questions, and who has the freedom to speak directly to any staff member.Charlie, Melissa, Meg, and many others here, provide that information for free, of course, but are seen as "opposing" viewpoints. They need to feel there's someone neutral who has their best interests at heart and isn't just concerned about petty things, like the kids.stu
It's Reuven, not Rueven, by the way. And good for him.Helen Schinske
I wish he had gone one step further and called them out. Maybe he's doing it privately. I think every official - elected or otherwise - who is now embarrassed over parroted nonsense data should make a phone call to Dr. G-J about this. And tell her (1)she's hurt her credibility and (2) straighten up and fly right. And they would have every right to do so since the district is always asking the Legislature and the city for help.But good for Reuven for stating how this made him feel.
The thing that really worries me about this number is that there was no effective push back to MG-J and Brad Bernatek when it morphed into a measure of college readiness. I think it is a symptom of how disconnected the higher level SPS staff are to the real life of Seattle. Anyone who really had an understanding of the strengths of our District would not have accepted that number. When we discussed it here in September, it took about a day or two for us to figure out that they had overstated the GPA and the credits necessary to be prepared for college and that 17% clearly did not represent what they were saying it did. Did any of the Ed Directors or Principals push back? This organization is being led by people who have no real interest in or knowledge of education in Seattle. Lower level staff who actually understand the schools and students seem to have no effective way of being heard, or choose to be silent. Who all did use it? Carlyle? Schools First? LEV? Are all of them so disconnected from Seattle Schools that they didn't question the number?
I think it is really clear that Representative Carlyle is putting responsibility on the Board to perform their oversight function.He seems to give the superintendent a pass on the lie. In fact, he doesn't even acknowledge that it was a lie. He writes "a mistake was made". This was not a mistake. It was an intentional effort to deceive.
i don't think Reuven gave the super a pass at all. in the language of politics he gave her and staff a thrashing. and he spanked the board too. for him to take time to write a very lengthy piece on the issue is very significant.does anyone think this will affect our district advocacy efforts in olympia? because, hell yes, i do. i think he's saying the same thing, too, in politico-speak.so what burns me is that our kids and our teachers will once again get the brunt of the ramifications here through even less willingness in olympia to fund our schools.
Cascade: Good points, but it also demonstrates Reuven's potential hypocrisy. He'll get behind any Ed Reform issue, swallowing it hook, line and sinker. For he or anyone to retaliate or reduce support because of a fire that he himself fanned the flames of for years, would be the epitome of non-accountability. (And assholishness).If he's distancing himself from the matter after blindly parroting a lie for so long, then it proves the maxim that Victory has many fathers and failure is an Orphan.If he's honest, he'll correct course and fight twice as hard for his constituents, as opposed to brown-nosing the cocktail crowds at McCaw Hall & the Gates Foundation. Ahhhh, what a nice change that would be.
um, seadawg, perhaps you should go to his blog and tell him so yourself. he's sure to see the criticism and perhaps as a thoughtful legislator change course, this being a teachable moment and all.in fact, any reader of this thread should do the same.
Cascade: Been there already. I think Charlie, Dan & Mel have it covered. Piling on probably means it won't get read. Think HMM's blog.
On Facebook Reuven has posted a video of himself citing the 17 percent figure, and then has made a personal comment that it's "embarrasing". Yup, no doubt he is extremely steamed. And it's a pity for the District because he is a legislator who works for our students. I do hope, though, this will be impetus for him to listen to parents, and not just staff/board/monied non-profits when we share data and news regarding the operations of the district and the education of our kids.
Does anyone have th original "doubt" expressed by DeBell any where? I think it would be interesting to show his initial "sounds too low" next to the "story" currently being fronted by the staff and the board, himself included.-ttln
From the Times article:"School Board President Michael DeBell said 17 percent always seemed too low to him. He raised questions about the number from the beginning, was told that staff would look into it, but said he never received a satisfactory answer."Every time I heard it, I cringed," he said. "I knew it was way too low. We were doing much better than that. I couldn't understand why we were putting that kind of data out.""Which is why his interview on Schram was utter BS.
Just read 9-8-10 blog postings pertaining to 17% figure.Here is what Seattle Parent wrote: "Check out the 5 yr Strategic Plan on the SPS homepage (p.14). The 17% rate was from 2006-07, with a "5-year" improvement goal for 40% in 2012-13."Hilarious! According to the district, SPS is right on target!Clearly, this alarming figure was intended to create crisis, pass legislation and obtain Ed. Reform Funding.Wondering how the puppets at Seattle Council PTSA, legislators etc. are feeling. If they were smart- they'd dump Goodloe-Johnson.I give Reuven credit for showing humility.
From Martin-Morris;"We knew what the definitions were and that they had changed over time. We used the University of Washington as the standard. It was public stated that we had adjusted the definition. From my viewpoint whether it was 17% or 46% neither is acceptable to me. It would not havechanged our priorities or the direction we want to go."I have asked for clarification onwhat on earth he meant by"We used the University of Washington as the standard."and for the public disclosure.
While you're at it, Concerned Parent, ask Director Martin-Morris what his benchmark is. I hear that 17% and 46% are too low, but what is his target number?More than that, what is he doing to advance students to that target number?
First Arnold,The original SPS math for 2006-07: 17% with goal of 40%.New SPS mathsystem for 07-08: 49% with goal of 80% for 08-09: 44% with goal of 80% for 09-10 46% with goal of 80%No matter how you spin it, even with their own new math we are not improving after 3 years.
I could try Charlie but I suspectthe response will be "I follow thestrategic plan our Dear Leader haspresented and all will be good"
Lots of interesting comments, containing different points of view, posted there since yesterday.I disagree with "wseadawg". I think well-thought-out comments from this blog's audience could be quite effective. I encourage you to add to the conversation there.
CentralMom: I wasn't telling people not to comment; only that I felt my points were already covered.
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