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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

New Education Directors

From Seattle Parent:

Michael Tolley - SE
Philip Brockman - NE
Aurora Lora - West Seattle
Bree Dusseault - NW
Nancy Coogan - Central

55 comments:

Maureen said...

A quick Google of Bree Dusseault yields (from a CRPE document):

Bree Dusseault was the founding principal of New Orleans Charter Middle School when it reopened in 2007 with plans to serve students in grades four through eight.

Maureen said...

From a 2007 Christian Science Monitor article:

... Ms. Dusseault, the principal at New Orleans Charter Middle, is driven by idealism more than pay. When it opens, the school's population will be largely poor and black. "This is an opportunity for people who like dreaming big ideas to put them into reality," says Dusseault, a multidegreed business onsultant.

Isn't the internet cool?!

Dorothy Neville said...

Then why not assign Dusseault to a region with more poor and black kids that needs more work? Why is she in NW and Tolley in SE? Does she want to work with a more white and affuent student body these days?

ParentofThree said...

I would think Ms. Dusseault was assigned the NW as that sector contains the most alternatives, which are prime pickings to be reorganized under the "charter-like" model, since charters are illegal here.

Salmon Bay, AS1, TOPS, Nova and Center are probably on this list.

Charlie Mas said...

She's already left after being the founding principal of a school that opened just three years ago?

Here's a story about the transition to the new principal. Ms Dusseault was principal there for only one year.

From Firstline Schools

"New Orleans Charter Middle School
In 1998, James Lewis Extension School became New Orleans’ first charter school and was renamed New Orleans Charter Middle School. It was operated by Middle School Advocates, a nonprofit organization. NOCMS became the city’s highest-performing open-admissions middle school. The curriculum combined rigorous classes focused on systematic skill development with project-based learning and a rich infusion of the arts. Each year, over 80% of NOCMS graduates were accepted to selective magnet and independent high schools around the city and over 95% of the students who began as sixth graders remained at the school through eighth grade, countering a citywide trend of high student mobility.
"

Charlie Mas said...

Nancy Coogan has been principal at Olympic View Middle School in Mukilteo.
Here's a story from the Snohomish County News.

In 2008 she was named as the Sno-Isle Region principal of the year.

She recently wrote this article on "Formative Assessment Strategies
to Improve Student Learning".

Rosie said...

I'm sorry, my memory is bad, but I am pretty sure I remember many many comments on this issue from May/June, where folks were absolutely convinced that the District would just recycle the old directors -- which everyone agreed was a very bad idea. Now you attack the fact that they hired someone new from outside? Based on completely unfounded assumptions you're making about who she is and what she thinks?

I remember reading a comment from a week or so ago posted by Melissa where she acknowledged that this blog could come across as "anti-everything." I'm paraphrasing, I don't have the time to look up her exact words. I guess the next time a similar comment is in order, she can add this example to the list.

And from what I could find in a few moments of internet research, it appears that Brockman, Coogan, Lora and Dusseault are all "new" to the position. So the readers of this blog get what they wanted, though of course, you can't tell from the first few comments.

Megan Mc said...

@parent of three, the NW cluster only has Salmon Bay as an Alternative school. AS#1, Thornton Creek are in the NE cluster. TOPS and NOVA are in the Central.

As for the specific assignments, we'll just have to see how it plays out. Is there a job description for this new position?

Charlie Mas said...

Rosie wrote: "Now you attack the fact that they hired someone new from outside"

Ummm. What attack? Which of these comments is an attack?

Ms Dusseault's record in New Orleans appears excellent - as the linked articles will attest. And all of the stories about Ms Coogan are flattering as well.

Where's the attack?

I think the reason you think there are a lot of attacks is because you see a lot of attacks that are not, in fact, attacks at all.

reader said...

Well yes, it sure did seem like attacks. "Wah, wah, they're really not cutting anyone. They're really just playing musical chairs. Wah, wah, how dishonest. We know it's all a shell game." Looks like those old directors aren't going to be directors. And yes, these are complaints.... "doesn't Ms. So-so want to teach more whites?" (Implication: she doesn't like minorities or challenges) "Doesn't MS So-so belong in the NE where she can do the alts?" (Implication: she's here to screw up the alts) "She's only been here and there fo X years" (Implication: she doesn't really do anything)

Rosie said...

Thank you reader. I couldn't have said it better myself.

Maureen said...

reader and Rosie. Do I at least get a pass? I shared the results of my research, but that perhaps counts as instigating?! :)

I am happy that the old Ed Directors are not just being recycled (thanks for reminding me.) TOPS, by the way, was put into the NE region for some reason (with Thornton Creek), so will have Phil Brockman as an Ed Director. I have heard nice things about him so that makes me happy too (although I think it would have made more sense to put TOPS in the Central cluster -- I suppose it had something to do with the School Board Director boundaries? They don't make much sense to me either.)

Rosie said...

Yes, Maureen, you definitely get a pass. You just provided some information. I agree the internet is cool for exactly that reasons - -quick biographical info on the past lives of newcomers to our region.

reader said...

Maureen, I love your post. And, it's great to see the facts, you know, information; and that's exactly what you posted. Thank you. I'm pretty glad too that they recycled a few people. Now if you could only find out what happened to the old ones...

Dorothy Neville said...

While I am sure there was cynical speculation that the old directors might just get recycled, I think a lot of the anger was that the district touted the re-org as part of reduction in staffing.

And changing from a system of directors based on grade level to one of directors based on region is going to solve some issues while possibly causing some others. I think there has been some thoughtful discussion about that. Perhaps some bashing as well, but not all the past discussions have been simply negative bashing.

Speculating over a new hire though. One with a history of passion for helping poor and minority kids being assigned to the NW district? Is that bashing? I didn't mean it to be. Just curious as to how the decision as to which region gets which director was made. Doesn't as first glance seem to be the best fit, but we do not know if Ms Dussealt thinks it's the best fit for her.

And the SE Initiative hasn't been that great a success, has it? At first glance, placing someone new and fresh there might have seemed like a better choice.

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TechyMom said...

I like Nancy Coogan's article. Between her and Kay Smith-Blum, I'm feeling rather optimistic about the experience my first grader will have in Central schools in the coming years.

One thing I'm confused about, though... are these folks by cluster rather than middle school service area? I thought we didn't have clusters anymore?

Anonymous said...
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Dorothy Neville said...

1. Isn't someone who can be successful in the worst of situations only be an asset in the best situations? I would hope that the neighborhood would embrace someone with that skill set.

Very possibly. But it is also possible that someone successful in some situations is not a good fit in others. We will have to wait and see, won't we? But both sorts of speculations are valid to make, I am sure both sorts of speculations have examples to back them up.

2. One of the largest growing pockets of immigrants and poverty is in the NW near Lake City.

Isn't Lake City in the NE? I suppose probably the neighborhood in question cuts across both regions though. You are correct that those issues are growing there.

3. I'm sure SE family appreciate having someone in SE who has familiar with the unique challenges and can jump right in, as opposed to someone who would have to start from scratch.

*Some* families will appreciate having someone familiar with their challenges, but other families might well wish for new blood. My guess is both sorts of families exist. Again, both sorts of speculations are valid, neither seem to me to be bashing. More like armchair quarterbacking, but not "just negative bashing."

(oh, and as for leaving a NOLA school for Seattle, imnsho, anyone would be a fool not to, simply based on climate! :) )

Maureen said...

Anonymous, Lake City is in the North EAST region. NW is pretty solidly middle class and includes part of QA too.

Techymom Ed Directors are not assigned by MS or HS attendance area. It's more random than that. (I keep (mis?) using the words 'cluster' and 'area' and 'region.' Not sure what applies here.) There are nine MSs and ten traditional HSs so it's just as well. They did try to spread out the alts and Options. Sometimes that created weird situations like TOPS in the NE.

I am angry that they implied that the Ed Director rearrangement was part of an actual cut back in central admin--THAT is the thing I complained about at the time. I did hope they would use it as an excuse to move some of the people out (which I think they did though some just got shuffled: Medsker to WSHS as interim principal for example.)

I like Charlie's extra "flare"--it reminds me of living on the East Coast! And the fact is, Ms. Dusseault was principal of that school for less than a year (they decided to become a K-4 and agreed they needed someone with experience with younger kids).

It's not clear to me where she has been since 2008.

I just typed that and then remembered my moribund LinkedIn account! Now I know: she was the "Director of Curriculum and Instruction at New Orleans Science and Math Academy" and is currently listed as a "Researcher at The Center on Reinventing Public Education." (CRPE, which I linked to in my first post.)

Have I said lately that I REALLY like the internet?!

Anonymous said...
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Seattle Parent said...

From a July 6th SPS press release, for the West Seattle director:

Aurora Lora is the founder and administrator of the Harriet Tubman Leadership Academy for Young Women, a public all-girls middle and high school in Portland that opened in September 2007. She spent four years through the Teach for America program as a fourth-grade teacher at Ryan Elementary School in the Houston Independent School District. While at Ryan Elementary, she helped her students make significant academic gains and wrote a $40,000 grant to start an after-school program for fourth and fifth graders. She was named “Teacher of the Year” and became the subject of a 100-page book written by Teach for America that is now used as a training tool. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor of Arts in Plan II honors and psychology, received her Master of Education from St. Thomas University, and completed her doctoral coursework and superintendent internship through the Urban Superintendent’s Program at Harvard University.

Dorothy Neville said...

"I went from being an everyday reader of the blog - a faithful reader and commenter - to someone hesitant to even open the page. I can only take so much negativity in a given setting."

Just to give you some feedback...
I'd have to say that I fall into this category as well.

-------------------
Gotta say that sometimes I feel the same way. Sometimes I feel like a rubbernecker while browsing. There's useful information here, useful negative information and negative discussion, but definitely this blog has its share of Unuseful negative blathering. And while I support in principle some of the ideas, the volume and obnoxiousness detracts from that.

So, once again allow me to share my secret. Read the blog through an rss feed, like google reader. The comments have their own feed, so I can stay in Google Reader and quickly and efficiently flip through the comments and read the thoughtful ones, not wasting time on the others.

seattle citizen said...

Umm..."Save Seattle Schools" isn't a hint that this is a watchdog blog of sorts?

Along with lots of interesting information that is not published by the local daily or broadcast on the local news channels, there is lots of watchdogging, "saving" going on here.

Ergo ipso facto, a lot of what is written here is reaction to what is seen as negative things.

Don't shoot the messenger.

Rosie said...

Tim Eyman considers himself a watchdog too. SO does Common Cause. Not sure what you meant, seattle citizen, by saying that

Being a watchdog should mean pointing out facts, and even suggesting the conclusions that one might draw from those facts. Especially facts that seem to have been missed in other forums. I don't think it's a license to smear folks you haven't even met yet, or to find a reason to react negatively to pretty much everything, including pretty petty stuff.

gavroche said...

Dusseault is "a multidegreed business consultant"? How does that qualify her to be a principal?

As for Rosie and reader and all the Anonymous-ers who are complaining about this blog: Instead of whining here about how much you don't enjoy reading this blog, why don't you simply stop reading it? Problem solved!

Seems to me the "attacks" and complaints on this thread are coming from you folks, not the others.

The rest of us are simply trying to piece together information about some new faces in SPS, knowing that SPS itself rarely if ever gives us all the info we need.

If SPS had a better track record of sound decision-making, transparency and honesty, then we all wouldn't need to take such a close look at the "news" and new hires that SPS produces.

kprugman said...

The more obvious question would be why MGJ would add 5 more new directors, unless she needed more weight from the top to direct her reforms.

Presuming her levy passes in November (in all likelihood probably not) there will have to be additional oversight to ensure the teacher evaluations move forward.

If I were a site administrator, I'd certainly be asking a lot of questions, such as how many hours are going to be given over for doing evaluations.

The pool of administrators MGJ is using probably all graduated from UW Center for Educational Leadership. Birsin and Alvarado are both former graduates. The director is the former asst sup from Edmonds.

I would compare this reform to a wrecking ball. Their intent is to tie curriculum (capital expenditure) to teacher performance (teacher salaries).

One would have to be very cynical to push for a reform so that teacher salaries will, without a doubt, go down. Fewer teachers will enter the profession and more will have no choice but leave schools where student performance is lowest.

Reform proponents have nothing to lose whenever a change measure is proposed.

Anonymous said...
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Jan said...

Gavroche: I frequently agree with your views, but disagree with your proposal to Rosie and Reader (that they just go away) -- and I hope they stay and call it as they see it.

Perhaps you have never been guilty of starting from an overly negative position, when viewing the proposals of MGJ, but I certainly have, and I appreciate the feedback.

I have no clue as to whether the new Ed Directors (or the reorganized format) will work well or not, but I am at least cautiously optimistic that perhaps "new blood" will be an asset here. As a parent who did not like Susan Derse's tenure at Garfield, I was relieved to find that, for example, she is not an ed director.

I agree with Dorothy -- changing from grade level organization to geographical area organization will probably fix some problems and create others. Each director will need either to be better "generalists" as they will cover all grades -- or be able to access the expertise they don't have. On the other hand, however, IF you want to make the administration more "accountable" for student learning -- it helps to make the structure more "vertical" -- administrators can no longer say -- we know we are 2 years behind in math in 7th grade, but we inherited the problem from those elementary schools folks. Now -- while there is not perfect continuity among student populations -- the skill sets of the 7th graders are the responsibility of the same ed director -- and he/she should know what is going on (or not going on) in the elementary schools that led to the problem.

Cont'd

(Cont'd)

Jan said...

In fact -- here is real wishful thinking -- maybe the Ed Director at the West Seattle middle schools will finally be willing and able to sit up and notice that the vast majority of the Schmitz Park kids arrive in the middle schools way ahead of their peers -- because they are using Singapore, not Everyday math -- and will help facilitate waivers for OTHER schools -- etc. etc.

For whatever the reason -- this is how the reorg is set up. At this point, I say, we adopt this pony and see how far we can ride it in the direction of real progress in making schools work for the kids who will walk in the doors in 3 weeks.

BUT -- I DO agree with Eric (and others) that cost/staffing is an issue. I WISH that the board would ask MGJ and/or Don Kennedy to report, with specificity, on how these five people work with an overall reduction (both in bodies and in dollars) in central district staffing. I would also like to see the board require a report that puts ALL coaches (other than master teachers who simultaneously teach their own classes of children AT LEAST HALF TIME) as central staff.

I have yet to see ANY feedback from teachers to the effect that coaching is useful or is money well spent. It takes time away from teachers (in terms of time to grade student work, prepare lesson plans, etc.) and takes resources away from children (because the coaches spend their time teaching teachers, rather than children).

Sahila said...

http://www.crpe.org/cs/crpe/print/csr_docs/home.htm

CRPE is an anti-teacher, pro testing, pro charter "think tank" coming out of the UW, funded by Gates and Broad and half a dozen other privatising vulture philanthropists mentioned in Diane Ravtich's Billionaire Boys Club...

http://www.crpe.org/cs/crpe/print/csr_docs/aboutus.htm


So, more infiltration of senior SPS administration, now directly responsible for what goes on at the school level...

I wish we had that follow-the-money, connect-the-dots diagram finished for posting on this blog, so that people could see at a glance what's going on - frankly, I'm tired of posting this info every couple of weeks...

Had to post the Broad influence and alumni map on the SEA facebook page again yesterday, for the benefit of people new to this game or who had not bothered to inform themselves...

Anonymous said...
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Charlie Mas said...

Oh. I see. By expressing curiosity and surprise with a question mark, I'm being negative. Also the use of the modifiers "only" and "already". Okay. I guess I should stick to Mark Twain's rule:
When you see an adverb, kill it.

Personally, I strongly believe that schools need stable leadership, so a principal changing jobs within three years is a red flag for me. I was raising that red flag.

Red flags are questions, not answers. I not presuming that anything is wrong, merely seeking an explanation for an anomaly. I am willing to accept explanations and move on without prejudice.

Was any part of my information about Ms Coogan negative? The part about her being name Sno-Isle Region principal of the year, perhaps or the story about her providing food for students over the weekend, or sharing her paper on formative assessments? I don't think so.

I do disagree with District actions sometimes and say so. You can choose to see that as negative, but that pre-supposes acquiesence as the default state. I don't presume either agreement or disagreement. You could just as easily say that the District disagrees with me and they are being negative. Actually, it would be more precise in the vast majority of cases to say that the District's actions disagree with their rhetoric, stated policies, or stated goals. It is the District who is being negative in all of those cases as well.

This is a tricky thing to argue - it's almost impossible to deny being in denial or to refute the accusation that you are contrary.

Yogi Berra said, rather famously, that he didn't really say all of the things he said. In much the same way I'm not nearly as sarcastic or negative as people make me out to be. This medium has no tone of voice, so a lot of the sarcastic tone is in the reader's ear, not in my writing. Given the presupposition that I am sarcastic or negative, the reader adds the sarcastic or negative tone that they believe should be included. Seattle, for all its virtues, is practically an irony-free zone. While I will acknowledge that sarcasm is, in fact, my native tongue, I have learned to speak the deadly earnest local dialect.

People who have met me in real life and have heard my voice are often surprised by my gentleness and sympathetic nature. No, really. They are particularly surprised if their image of me is built from their reading of selected blog posts. I can only hope that I get the benefit of more sympathetic readings following such a meeting.

For some reason, my work is often read as if Steve Allen were reading a letter to the editor. Really, a flatter, gentler tone is appropriate.

Anonymous said...

I think Charlie Mass is way out of line on here. His comments make sweeping generalizations and assumptions with no information from which to draw. His comments should be removed. They are wrong and only perpetuate divisiveness. Charlie and Dorothy also serve up their entry with a little racism. Way to go! It's ugly.

seattle citizen said...

anonymous 8:46 -
Why is Charlie wrong? I don't see it. He's raising valid issues along with information he's bringing. I too am curious why a principal leaves after one year.

Where is he wrong? Wrong facts? Wrong questions? Wrong attitude?

And if he's wrong, why not just correct him with YOUR ideas, your opinions? Must you waste our time bemoaning wrongness? Maybe you want to kill the messenger, for he brings ill tidings? Why? Why the many (I'm assuming it's one "anonymous") posts about how terribly wrong it all is?

Do you merely want his voice silenced?

seattle citizen said...

oops, it's anonymous 8:56, not 8:46. I was wrong.

Charlie and Dorothy are being racist?! Where? That's a heck of an accusation. I know sometimes I am racist, and am glad when people let me know. I'm sure Charlie and Dorothy would welcome your detailing of their racist words.

Otherwise, that's a deeply disturbing accusation to throw around..."a little racism"? I don't see it. In these comments.

Anonymous said...

As a note of interest, the supe brought Michael Tolley with her from Charleston.

It's interesting to see that the central area was the most affected by school closures in the last round.

I do believe that he is there to do her bidding as is our CFO, Don Kennedy, another import from Charleston.

I think more is going to be happening in the SE area and I don't think that it will be good.

It will be interesting to see what unfolds.

Rosie said...

In my world view "debate the issues" means taking positions oppositional to one another. If that is not, in fact, the purpose of this blog, if it, instead, intended to be an amen chorus, then please change the description to include something like "only the views of those who are anti-Broad, anti-LEV, anti-existing Board may be expressed."

As to the charge of rascism, when someone suggests that a person who has previously led a school that was "largely poor and black" should be assigned "to a region with more poor and black kids that needs more work," (See Dorothy Nevill's comments from 8/17 @ 1:02 pm) it certainly seems a reasonable conclusion to draw that the poster believes that a person who has previously focused on one racial category of students needs to stay with that group. Especially when the next line in the post is "Does she want to work with a more white and affluent student body these days?" Now maybe that is not what Dorothy meant, but to be surprised that someone would interpret it that way seems a bit disingenuous. It puts the world in stark black and white terms. It suggests that Ms. Dussealt is motivated by the race and financial position of the student population. Yes, there are other ways to interpret her comment, but to see it as rascist and income-ist (to define a term) strikes me as a pretty reasonable first cut way to react.

Dorothy Neville said...

Ah, I should have used more words, I thought I was more clear. I was responding to the words Maureen quoted, that she was driven by idealism and concluded, perhaps erroneously, that that was related to her working with a poor and black population.

So I wondered why someone driven by such idealism would choose to work or be placed in the region of our city with the least such problems. And is, in fact, sometimes characterized as full of whiny middle class white folk with an overblown sense of entitlement. It's a different environment and has different challenges.

William said...

Questions...
Wouldn't the district's proposal be more acceptable if SPS Admins and Principals were evaluated with the same test scores percentages as they are proposing for teachers? Last year Goodloe-Johnson lauded her $5000 as a merit bonus, but that is only a small percentage of her more-than-the-governor salary. What if she was evaluated the same percentage based on the district average? Would she roll hers then? Would long time SPS educators and current district negotiators like Brockman, Terrell, and Thomson be so enthused for merit evaluations if their own salaries and evaluations were based on the average of student test scores for the entire district.

And... why did the district negotiate for a year and half, developing a plan with SEA, and then change at the last minute. While the SPS team was negotiating, which SPS admin(s) had time to develop and create from scratch a new and last minute proposal? The Broad positions? Was the past year and a half of negotiations a ploy, setting up the last minute switch? Why would the board condone this type of behavior. Makes me wonder if the SPS proposal wasn't already roughed out.

And...what is the school board doing? It is well established that Goodloe-Johnson is not well received in Seattle. Her personal quirks and rudeness aside, the board appears to be using her to break the teachers and then are hoping for her leave because there is so much negativity to her presence. Unfortunately, there will be so much negative stigma/taint left on those admins remaining that we will again have to replace them with new people, and they will have an entirely new solution to enhancing student test scores.

reader said...

Nice try. Same comment though, and more thinly veiled racism, endemic to the blog. Here's the tenor of the commentary repeated over and over: "What's good for us... isn't good for them. They need the remediation, to get their stupid, ignorant selves up to grade level. Of course we still love them though, because we don't put value judgements on people, no matter how stupid they are. But, we need the good stuff. Nothing can be good for everybody, right? I mean if it's good for us, it will be way too advanced for the dummies, likely related to the hurricane people in NOLA."

Rosie said...

Dorothy -- that makes complete sense and is a very interesting thought/question.

The problem with this form of communication is that it's so one-dimensional. It leads us to make conclusions and assumptions about people and their thoughts based on so little info. Thanks for clarifying. It paints a whole different picture.

seattle citizen said...

What I find to be racist is the grouping of children into little categories (using merely the little checkboxes on registration forms) for the purpose of "measuring" them and finding them deficient.

"You're 'African American'? Ach, what a pity that your 'group' does comparitively poorly on our wonderful tests! There's a 'gap', you know! But WE can fix it. Oh, what, you're actually an Ethiopian who moved here last year? Well, you're all Black, and that means you are all part of a group that isn't doing so well. Wait, what? Your mother was a Scot who married a Kenyan in Ethiopia? Well, no matter, you're African American to US, you're one of 'them.'"

Racist through and through.

Now, income...income is a different story: It's effects (particularly generational poverty or generational wealth) are a little more concrete.

Melissa Westbrook said...

I see no attack about coming from the outside. What I see are people finding out where the directors are coming from. No one has said one thing about what any of these directors thinks. Interesting how people hear/read what they want to.

(Also, they have kept some of the old Directors so yes, they are being somewhat recycled.)

I never said this blog was "anti-everything". Show me the paraphrase or don't attribute to me.

gavroche said...

Jan said...

Gavroche: I frequently agree with your views, but disagree with your proposal to Rosie and Reader (that they just go away) -- and I hope they stay and call it as they see it.


Jan, I didn't tell them to "go away." I merely question why a person would continue to read something (blog, newspaper, magazine, whatever) that they disagree with and don't like -- especially when that then prompts them to repeatedly post comments about how much they don't like reading the blog they are reading. (!)

Whether this is some form of masochism, or a love of public complaining, it's rather tedious and doesn't really advance the discussion in a meaningful way.

It also diverts the discussion from the subject at hand (here, the new Ed Directors) to the messengers (us) and medium (this blog). I sometimes wonder if that is intentional...

I don't agree with everything on this blog either. Or everything I read on other blogs or in newspapers. So what? I still think this is a valuable source of info and I appreciate the fact that it fosters discussion of issues that are important to my kids and public education in general.

I guess my view on this can be boiled down to: let's quit the whining about the imperfections of this or any blog, and advance the discussion. If you have an opposing view, great -- state it and make your case.

Sahila said...

and then of course you have the people who complain about those of us who are 'fixated' on what's really going on in the district - those of us who dig into the background of individuals, groups, organisations, those of us who publish references/research to support our opinions, statements etc - the people who are pissy about that, NEVER, EVER post references/data/stats to support their own views or to prove our research-based statements wrong...

Which leads me to the conclusion that they are (naively or fully intentionally and purposefully) acting as agents for the forces attempting to take complete control of public education....

Rosie said...

Melissa, I can't search all your past comments. I have no memory of what the original post was that led to your comment. But in the last 4 - 6 weeks, I recall very clearly that you posted a comment that I recall being along the lines of "sometimes I think about the criticism that gets leveled against this blog that we're always complaining about things." (I'm paraphrasing.) Then you gave 3-5 examples that might certainly seem to support the thesis that this blog comes down against X, then when Not-X is proposed, it comes down against Not-X as well. Then you explained that that's not the intent here, that you, for one, try to remember to call out the good when you see it.

Maybe with this further information, you'll remember the comment and maybe even the post that caused you to write it. I actually really liked that comment.

Sorry that my paraphrasing of that comment makes your react so strongly. Sorry if I got the timing wrong, and it was more than a week or two ago.

Again, though, others seemed to agree with me. Clearly a small minority of the posters on this blog, but I'm not the only one, at least on this point. (See, e.g., reader @ 2:35, Dorothy @ 4:43 and Jan @ 7:29 (Jan does not agree, but she's open to the potential that the criticism might be valid.)) Shoot the messenger, since you really seem to find me annoying, but the criticism remains.

Melissa Westbrook said...

"I remember reading a comment from a week or so ago posted by Melissa where she acknowledged that this blog could come across as "anti-everything."

"I recall very clearly that you posted a comment that I recall being along the lines of "sometimes I think about the criticism that gets leveled against this blog that we're always complaining about things."

Those are clearly two different statements. The first one I never said. I might have said that a criticism of this blog is that we complain and don't offer solutions (which is not true; we frequently do).

Look, quote me if you want to but you better be sure of what you are saying because it is wrong and unfair to put words in my mouth and claim I said them. I won't say this again.

Teachermom said...

When I want the "rosy" view of SPS, I need only to read SPS press releases, e-mails and mailings sent to teachers, and the Seattle Times.

For a different perspective, I come here. There is something rotten in Denmark, and I want to know what it is and throw it out, not cover up the smell with air freshener.

Rosie said...

I just checked my original post @1:47 on 8/17,, where immediately after the quote you included in your 1:11 on 8/18 pm post I say "I'm paraphrasing." Sorry you didn't notice that.

You and I are both guilty of reading each others' post too quickly and responding in haste.

I, for one, will commit to trying to read more slowly, and wait a little to respond to you.

reader said...

especially when that then prompts them to repeatedly post comments about how much they don't like reading the blog they are reading. (!)


So what? It's the internet. Duh. That's life in the big league. You seem to post and repost the same old same old. Your view is to "quit whining" ??? How strange. You're one of the biggest whiners of all. Get a life.

seattle citizen said...

meanwhile, back to the subject of education...

Some board meeting, eh?

emeraldkity said...

I was wondering who Bree Dusseault was ;).
Since she was a 1st year principal- in 07, she must have made quite an impression to be given the role of education director just three years later in a city far away from Louisiana.

emeraldkity said...

Aurora Lora was a first year principal in PDX last year- My daughter worked in Portland Public schools, I'll ask her what she knows of her.

I am a little concerned ( ok a lot), that the Ed directors seem to be coming from outside the district.

I don't feel that is the way to find the best administrators- what does it say to people who have put in decades of work within the district?

Phil Brockman is the only one who has been here ( Don't count Tolley cause he came with Maria )

Energy Audit said...

They are the names of the new education directors. I was aware of them that education directors are going to change now.