Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Greece BOE Needs Fundraiser To Buy A Clue

I listened to the Greece school board study session Tuesday night and learned how little our school board understands about their jobs! After they asked dozens of questions of the interim supt., and only about half were actually answered, one board member who sounded puzzled by it all wondered aloud, "Is this plan going to be implemented all together, or a la carte?" O'Rourke gently reminded him that it was the school board's job, not his, to decide that! Clearly, these folks have no idea what they are doing or what they want.

A friend pointed out to me that O'Rourke is NOT earning his salary. He had no answers to most questions, but reminded the BOE that they should act on this by June. Under former Supt. Steve Walts, it would have been unacceptable to not have the answers! He would have demanded them of staff right then and there.

Another friend lamented that"schools of choice were put into place to alleviate boundary changes – we are now proposing boundary changes ‘to keep’ schools of choice."

Common sense died in Greece Central long ago. Who wants a candy bar? It's only two bucks and the proceeds are for a great cause!


Anonymous said...

SCATS said it. Greece would be comparatively better off if Steve Walts was still here.

Anonymous said...

Greece has had 4th grade instrumental music for 50 years or more which has been a critical element in the superior music programs and enrichment of student lives that have characterized music in Greece schools. Now there is a plan to gut that fundamental first step in developing the potential of our kids.
But rather than simply lobby for the reinstatement of music programs, those of us who are involved in music have been encouraged to make suggestions on what can be cut elsewhere in the budget to save music.
There are three obvious answer: administrators, busing and closing excess buildings. All three of these choices will not impact the educational opportunities of 12,000 kids. Protecting the budgets for those three items while gutting music and other programs isn't directly analogous to the "burning of the books 70 or so years ago. But surely the mentality that is behind the current budget proposals displays the willingness to spend funds on politically favored outcomes of the "few" at the expense of the future opportunities of the "many". As long as 5 or 6 buses go down the same street to pick up kids of the same age, buildings designed for 500+ kids are open with barely 300 kids, and only two administrative positions are reduced through retirement, then the BOE is "criminally culpable" for the educational damages inflicted on our youth.

SCATS said...

To 5:58AM ~~ Please don't put words in my mouth! I was relating the observation of a friend.

To 8:29AM ~~ Do you find it at all disconcerting that the teacher's union had NOTHING TO SAY about any of this at the most recent BOE meeting?

Anonymous said...

To Scats, 9:42: The incompetence and inaction of the teachers union reflects on their leadership. I do not believe it should be interpreted as condoning the cuts that directly impact the kids in the classrooms. But it sure would help matters if they got some "skin" in the game. Maybe the wage freeze is the next step. There seem to be no winners anywheres in this ugly scene. Except perhaps the NY taxpayer...but at what true cost if the execution of the cuts is done incredibly badly.

Anonymous said...

This should be posted in every school!

Love him or hate him, he sure hits the nail on the head with this!

Bill Gates recently gave a speech at a High School about 11 things they did not and will not learn in school. He talks about how feel-good, politically correct teachings created a generation of kids with no concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the real world.

Rule 1 : Life is not fair - get used to it!

Rule 2 : The world doesn't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3 : You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won't be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn both.

Rule 4 : If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss.

Rule 5 : Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your Grandparents had a different word for burger flipping: they called it opportunity.

Rule 6 : If you mess up, it's not your parents' fault, so don't whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7 : Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now.. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent's generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8 : Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools, they have abolished failing grades and they'll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9 : Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do that on your own time.

Rule 10 : Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11 : Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.

Anonymous said...

Steve Walts is doing well where he is.

SCATS said...

To 2:49PM ~~ That's hysterical! He's used Keith Imon to become "a school PR professional's superintendent"!

I love how it goes on to say he "led a major re-branding effort for the district and has not been afraid to break new ground in aggressively marketing the schools and garnering corporate sponsorships. He is a leader committed to proactive communication that is integrated into all programs and initiatives as a key component of providing a "World Class Education" for all the students he serves."

For all of his "new initiatives and rebranding efforts, he's hanging onto his old slogan - "World class education" LOL

Anonymous said...

9:42 SCATS: I stand corrected.

SCATS friends believe that Greece would be comparatively better off if Steve Walts was still here.

1:04 - The text is actually a pared-down version of an op-ed piece that appeared in the San Diego Union-Tribune on September 19, 1996. It was written by Charles J. Sykes, best known as the author of "Dumbing Down Our Kids: Why American Children Feel Good about Themselves, but Can't Read, Write, or Add." Drastically edited by person(s) unknown, it began making the email rounds under Bill Gates' name in February 2000 and is still, as of this writing in 2005, far more often attributed to Gates than to Sykes — which is unfortunate, but, like the man said: Life isn't fair; get used to it.

SCATS said...

To 6:44PM ~~ Thanks ;)

Anonymous said...

My son goes to a high performing "eastside" elementary school with a student population of 550. There is one principal and no AP.

A Greece Teacher

Anonymous said...

Does everyone understand that elementary schools will start 30 minutes LATER? Less school for more money, plus the extra money for childcare before work? Let's keep the school day intact if we are paying for it. More education for the money please. What is a deputy superintendent? How many do we need?

Anonymous said...

High performing eastside schools don't have to deal with the same behavioral issues that we do in Greece. Some of our elementary schools need as much help as they can get.

Another Greece Teacher

SCATS said...

To 10:29PM ~~ They have to keep the Deputy Supt. around so he can be "Acting Supt" when O'Rourke leaves later this month dfor the cancer they've been keeping "secret." However, Nadolinski is retiring at the end of the year. It's not clear to me if he will be replaced or not.

To 10:32PM ~~ I'll bet those east side schools have a teaching staff that doesn't pass the buck at every turn, too ;)

Anonymous said...

Those high performing schools (that happen to be on the east side) have leadership that create a school environment that promote teacher effectiveness and student engagement.

Anonymous said...

ask any teacher about those 11 rules we can't teach and they will agree with every single one. Why do we teach the way we do now? NCLB, NY State Ed, and all the administrators that have bought into the feel good crap (this includes Steve Walts by the way). The teachers would gladly go back to some "old school" methods that still work just fine.

SCATS said...

To 7:51AM ~~ I suspect those high performing east side schools wouldn't hire many of the teachers Greece keeps, too ;)

To 11:31AM ~~ What total BS!! WHY CAN'T YOU TEACH ANY OF THOSE RULES?? I know for a fact that Greece teachers use the "life isn't fair" slogan fairly often, usually as a defense for doing the indefendable, especially as it relates to their subjective grading practices.

And rule #8 came about because teachers & school administrators wanted to do away with recognizing students for excellence in academics! Now we have 4.5GPAs and one-third of a graduating class recognized as valedictorian/salutatorians ... UGH! You should be ashamed!

Anonymous said...

What did my AP do today....sat in their office on their laptop computer.

SCATS said...

To 6:48PM ~~ Maybe he/she was reading SCATS ;)