Friday, May 22, 2009

Board of Ed to get public input

The Board of Education has scheduled a special meeting for next Tuesday, at which there will be two public comment sessions.

The first public comment session will focus on leveling, which is a proposal to eliminate advanced math classes from the 6th grade next year (Eye piece).  Last week's BoE meeting drew impassioned opposition to this leveling, from teachers and parents concerned about both the advanced students and those needing more time to understand basic math.  

The second public comment session will focus on the recommendations by JCJ Architecture, who have been hired to do a district wide utilization study.  JCJ promised to make recommendations this Spring, which would solve Moody School's overcrowding this coming year.  These recommendations are to be followed in the fall by recommendations for districtwide school buildings use.  The JCJ recommendations will precede a second public comment session.  

Here is the agenda for the meeting on Tuesday, May 26, in the Middletown High School auditorium, from the BoE web site:
6:00 Leveling
7:00 Public Comment
7:30 JCJ Architecture Recommendations
8:30 Public Comment
9:00 Adjournment
The Hartford Courant reports that the JCJ recommendations presented on Tuesday will deal only with Moody Elementary School overcrowding.  The chair of the Board of Education, Ted Raczka, has not responded to my Thursday early morning request for more information to share about leveling  or the JCJ study.  


Eye Spy (Anthony R. Lancia, Jr.) said...

Leveling what a brilliant idea,"NOT".
Come on people do we really feel that this program is going to make our so called less fortunate students any brighter.
This is the foster child of No Child Left Behind and cannot be masked by any other name.
We as parents and so called adults have lost the concept of what our responsibilty is at home, we feel that when we send our children off to school that everything that has happened behind our closed doors is left behind and our children become someone else.
This is the farthest from the truth, no government is going to rectify the problem of less fortunate children, it is the strength of ones will and determination to succeed and this is what needs to be taught at home and will carry on when we ship our kids off to school.
Granted there are many out there that do not,"shall we say"' share the same benefits or have the same income, but it does not mean that you do not have the ability to better yourself. The fact of the matter is that there is more opportunity now then ever.
A child learns more in the first 5 years of their life than most will for the rest of their life. Lets take crying as an example of a natural and learned lesson. A child when born cries to get the basic needs in life, that being fed or having a diaper change, and as time passes this child starts to become programed on limits and just how far they can carry on with crying to fulfill their needs.
There has to come a point where we as adults answer this call responsibly and not let the child abuse it,this becomes difficult when we have children raising children or absent parents.
It should not be the job of the government to raise our kids but in some instances it is necessary.
My point that I try to reveal is that the problem is not in the school system nor can they fix it with all these fancy programs, the problems lie at home and that is where we must start and the rest will follow.
In closing I am dead set against the concept of leveling as this will do nothing but hold back the children that want to learn and have earned their right to excel in their studies.
Do I feel that the students who struggle deserve less,"absolutely not", what they deserve is extra attention as to what is going on outside of school and address the issue at hand and not put a band-aid or blind eye to it.
These children possess a completely differant talent that other children do not have, that have an ability to get what they want when they want and when this is harnessed and taught how to use responsibly they will excell in a differant direction in society and be able to offer something others can't.

NOBO said...

I agree with Eye Spy. Remember, back in the day, when schools had "Special Ed" classrooms? These were for those students who were a step behind the other students. Then we got all PC and decided it was best to integrate these students with the rest of the population.
Along came No Child Left Behind, which ideally was meant to insure teachers actually taught. It became almost impossible to achieve the requirements of NCLB when you had to put on the brakes for the slower students.
If it's going to be a battle between education v. stigma, education will lose every time.Instead of converting school buildings into condos, create a "special school"where these kids can get the attention they rightfully deserve.

Anonymous said...

If I remember correctly, the report of Middletown schools indicated the primary reason there was such an achievement gap was due to the fact that teachers could not focus on those students who needed academic help. How is putting everyone into one classroom going to provide students with the opportunity to get the education they deserve. We are so concerned about stigma that our society has become "one-size fits all" so no one group is singled out. Leveling is not the answer. Showing kids that there are different ways of learning; that not everyone knows everything; and that everyone has something they are good at should be the focus.

NOBO said...

Eye made some good points but the cold hard fact is that the only real solution is to remove these kids from their environment--period. Many cannot make it thru the school day without psych drugs (fact),many live in single parent or no parent households (fact),many bounce around from school to school-city to city- or state to state (fact).Tell me how the school system is going to fix that.