Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Dr. Enfield Answers Questions on Questionland Today

Today is the day that Dr. Enfield will be answering questions posted for her on Questionland. She will reportedly answer at least ten questions.

It's not too late to add questions or vote for your favorites.

23 comments:

Charlie Mas said...

Her answers have been disappointingly evasive. She didn't speak to the issues about Teach for America, MAP, alternative education, or the math materials. Instead, she talked around them.

KG said...

How is 18 million more spent on Central admin. than in any other school district if ran by their central admin. more important than elementary school counselors?

dan dempsey said...

Oh she spoke to my question about Discovering Math adoption for High Schools, which had very poor results after year one. She used the three years to get results, with lots of stuff that needs to happen.

Good to know that when materials are adopted .... she believes we throw the first wave of kids under the bus for three to five years. This is complete idiocy. She needs to look at Singapore math results in various schools throughout the nation. Schmitz Park apparently just lucked out with the 5th grade having the highest MSP Math passing rate in Seattle and #3/1089 in state.

She wisely said at least three years to be effective as Everyday is still a flop after three years.

So where is the money coming from for these math special goodies? SPS is blowing it all on MATH testing and various other measures that do not assist struggling kids.

Betty Patu was certainly right with her vote against Enfield as interim Superintendent. This was hardly the cange the district needed as this is NO CHANGE. The CAO who pushed baloney under MGJ, now liberated from MGJ and on her own, is continuing to push baloney.

The WA state constitution will likely never be fulfilled when it comes to article IX and math in Seattle.

"Disappointingly evasive" is too kind a word choice for Dr. Enfield's math answer "purposely deceptive" would be better.

At least "her current purposely deceptive answer" was not at the level of submitting forged evidence to the Superior Court..... so maybe she is getting better.

===========
Sure is great to know that when it comes to instructional materials and practices...."The SPS never ever makes a mistake .... thus nothing ever needs to be fixed." How reassuring.

Charlie Mas said...

It looks like she's done. She answered seven questions.

Charlie Mas said...

You can comment on her answers.

Anonymous said...

Charlie -
I guess that 7 rounds up to 10.

Oompah

Melissa Westbrook said...

"For the current 2010-11 school year, Seattle Public Schools budget submitted to OSPI shows a total Central Administration figure below 7%."

The wrong question got asked. It should have been Central OFFICE because I'm sure that's nowhere near 7%.

She didn't answer the TFA question.

I had asked Communications about summer school being cut weeks ago with a "no answer available." So now we know; there will be no summer school available.

Interesting that she didn't answer the question with highest votes which was about funding maintenance.

KG said...

We know that the district plays shell games with Central as they have in the past and this is a past practice. Melissa, do you have access to all the people that are in central admin. and their $ for each? This so called cut to 7%
is probably false as they do not want to disontinuie their little thiefdom. You will find the people cut in other line items.

SC Parent said...

Her answers demonstrate that she will probably roll right into the permanent Superintendent job. Why can't we just hire Charlie instead?

Charlie Mas said...

Two more questions have been answered, one on the maintenance backlog and one on cutting the central office budget.

Po3 said...

Talk about awhole lot of nothing except the comment around "quality instruction" when talking about math.

Boy if I was a math teacher I would be livid to see that comment...

gavroche said...

How do we know it's actually Enfield answering these questions and not, say, Lesley Rogers of Strategies 360/SPS Communications Dept.?

Whatever the case, these are not public-trust-winning answers in my estimation.

It sounds like more of the same -- same bad SPS policies, new face.

Wonder how that levy vote is coming along.....

Melissa Westbrook said...

This was my reply to the Maintenance answer:

Sounds good,right? Dr. Enfield said;

"Concentrating resources at a single school to complete the entire backlog of work orders enables us to reduce the backlog at a faster rate."

They have slowed the rate, not decreased it. SPS has $530M in backlogged maintenance. Under the proposed budget only "emergency incidents" would be taken care of.

"Our custodial teams now complete preventative maintenance on our existing building systems on a regular basis."

Custodians are not maintenance workers. What they are doing is minimal.

We have $120M new buildings and 80+ year old buildings and we aren't maintaining them much. So you, the taxpayer, get asked for money over and over and yet the district will not take care of the investment.

They let go that Maintenance manager who came up with the zone idea. Interesting.

Oh, and yes, keep in mind after the Japan earthquake - the district has a fair number of buildings that are have no seismic upgrades. Good luck, kids!

No, it's more important to build a "data warehouse" and pay for Teach for America recruits. Those are more important than basic maintenance to protect kids and staffs in our schools and respect the investment the public makes in our schools.

zb said...

"Instead, she talked around them."

If I ever meet an administrator who didn't do this, I think my head would probably explode from the novelty.

But, Enfield did seem particularly persistent in her efforts to avoid direct answers. I'm thinking of the Ross Reynold's interview -- he can be pretty insistent in asking questions, and she managed to keep repeating the party line (which wasn't a bad one) and thus avoiding answering.

I guess if they don't actually lie, though, we can read between the lines of their evasion and get something useful out of it.

Bird said...

I really didn't expect different sorts of answers for the whys and wherefores.

The answers are politic, I wound be very surprised if they were anything else.

At least there was a bit of real information in a couple of the answers.

There are 74 academic coaches that don't teach students directly. There will be no summer school this year. (An interesting pair of answers. Hm, now where could we get money to fund summer school? Maybe we should just revise the job description of academic coach, so that they will now teach summer school as part of their work.)

She weirdly didn't answer the TFA question. Hard to legitimately duck a yes or no question without looking bad.

I'd really like to know the answer on that one.

Charlie Mas said...

With a response to a question about academic coaches, Dr. Enfield has now answered ten questions.

I wouldn't expect any more.

Peon said...

Not only has summer school been cut but so has night school. Our school counselor said there were no options for credit retrieval in HS any longer. He is recommending BYU online, or summer school in Shoreline or Bellevue. SPS has cut all credit retrieval options at a time when they say they will be focusing on struggling students and closing the achievement gap.

I wonder how this will affect the drop out rate. If kids have no options within SPS to make up failed classes, and can't afford online classes, or summer school in another district ($300 per class or so), they may very well feel hopeless and dropout.

emeraldkity said...

My daughter did not fail any classes in middle school- however, with placement testing for math in 9th grade, she placed well below grade level. She also participated in a program ( ACE) intended to bring students up to grade level in math & reading & taken along side of regular math & english courses. So the bulk of her freshman year was taking math & english courses, ( along with Spanish, history & biology- however remedial programs are few & far between in the district high schools)

She was catching up but was still behind sophomore year and the summer before junior year she took a summer school advanced algebra class & passed it, which enabled her to register for chemistry in the fall ( she received an A in chem).

Without the summer school class, she would not have been able to get to grade level math until sr year & she would not have been able to take both chem & physics.

Summer school was only held at Franklin & Ingraham that year- both difficult to get to by bus from many areas.

However ,they were each easier to access from Seattle than Interlake is, which is apparently what the Seattle school district is recommending for students.

How does cutting summer school make any sense in a district that claims to want to reduce the achievement gap?
Along with elementary school counselors, they are cutting funding to the supports that at risk students need.

dan dempsey said...

"How does cutting summer school make any sense in a district that claims to want to reduce the achievement gap?"

The District claims all kinds of stuff. They've never been very good at building trust with those claims. Looks like it is just more of the same.

The building trust campaign in the district is mostly spin and little if any substance. How many folks will be fooled into increased trust in the district?

Melissa Westbrook said...

No summer school.

No career/college counseling.

No direct intervention for struggling high schools students.

All these things should be funded by a district that claims students should graduate college or career ready.

dan dempsey said...

Melissa,

Apparently the SPS believes that funding lots of MAP testing etc. will increase learning and make the kids ready for anything.

There is absolutely no data that indicates this testing is in anyway appropriate or will increase learning.

Students will not be guided from NWEA tests. For an action to be formative it needs to happen often and be useful.

This is just more BUNK from the SPS.

NWEA MAP fits with all the Ed reform Bunk. Obviously 30 senators believe in Bunk. False belief and spending money on pointless purchases will not result in any increase in student learning.

============

I am still waiting for an evidence based explanation for voting for 1443 from any Senator.

Charlie Mas said...

This was a huge disappointment.

Dr. Enfield was not nearly as honest or candid as she should have been.

This did not help build trust.

TechyMom said...

I wonder if WAVA is an option for credit retrieval? It's free, isn't it?