Tuesday, July 26, 2011

As The Tax Cap Time Bomb Ticks ...

"We need to move more aggressively on closing a school ..." ~ Lou Alaimo

"I really don't know if now is the prudent time to continue down the path with the Attendance Committee's recommendations." ~ BOE Prez. Julia VanOrman

"There is no way we can maintain the level of choice and level of transportation options ... I don't think we have a choice to do nothing ... Change isn't an event, it's a process." ~ Babs

SCATS ~~ It appears that SCATS'  call to close one or more schools to get the budget under control was on target after all! How wishy-washy can Julia get? I hate to say it but Babs sounds like she "gets it"!! There MAY be hope for Greece Central after all ... time will tell ... tick, tick, tick ...


Anonymous said...

I'd like to know when Julia thinks the 'prudent time' will arrive. (me thinks 'NEVER')

Anonymous said...

Greece is down almost 4,000 students from a high of approximately 15,200 students.
Barnard is the only building closed to students BUT still open for other activites with related operating costs.

Most NYS school districts don't even have 4,000 students. Greece could close the resulting savings of an entire NYS school district.

Some Greece elementary schools are under 300 students with a principal and a half time vice principal. At one time Kirk Road Elementary had just under 700 students and only a principal.

Greece could: 1.Close and moth ball 3 additional elementary schools 2.Moth ball Barnard
3.Move Apollo to Oly
4.Move Odyssey to Apollo
5.Rent Hoover to BOCES
6.Moth ball old district office on Latta Rd.

The above changes don't even touch the school of choice and signature school issues. Of course there are related savings in transportation cost with closing the signature school options and closing at least one SOC at the elementary level.

Instead of acting on the these issues last year, the BOE decided to cut AP classes at the HS, lower graduation unit requirements and allow seniors to leave school when the "required" courses are over. Cut instruction and cut teachers.

This action breaks long held BOE promises to the community, "We will ALWAYS cut cost away from the students and the classroom, to preserve instruction."

Kind of like these promoises:
The check is in the mail.
I will love you in the morning.
I am from district office and I am here to help you.


Doug Skeet
PS SCATS can you(we)show the new Supt. a little respect and not call her babs until she earns it?

Anonymous said...

I hope the BOE listens! It is obvious what needs to be done and should have been done already!

SCATS said...

To 10:50PM ~~ Methinks like you do!!

To Doug ~~ My understanding was that Barnard was TO BE CLOSED under the budget plan the BOE put forth in May. No word has been given about WHAT they plan to do with the property.

Regarding lowered enrollments, LET'S NOT EVER FORGET THAT GREECE BUILT CAPACITY FOR 16,000+ STUDENTS!!We're down to under 12,000. It's high time we CLOSE SEVERAL BUILDINGS TO GET THE BUDGET UNDER CONTROL.

Regarding the name, it's not intended to be disrespectful.

To 9:48AM ~~ I was wondering if Julia will be driven to more uncontrollable sobbing when she has to tell her cronies that their school is closing? After the emotional outpouring over saying the third "goodbye" to Lou Alaimo, we might have to drag her out.

Anonymous said...

Your "intentions" are irrelevant. It's how your behavior is perceived by others that determines what is disrespectful. Judging by most comments on the topic of your choice of name for our new Superintendent, most people agree that it is disrespectful. Your refusal to change your behavior despite feedback from others is very revealing. You may say it is not intended to be disrespectful, but deep down you know that's what you intend.

People who talk loudly on cell phones in restaurants are not intending to be disrespectful, but they are. Kids who wear hats in inappropriate settings aren't intending to be disrespectful, but they are. People who infantilize women with diminutive names may not intend to be disrespectful, but they are.

I don't expect you to change, but clinging to "It's not intended to be disrespectful" is laughable.

SCATS said...

To 10:34AM ~~ Re: "Judging by most comments on the topic of your choice of name for our new Superintendent..."

Your rant is based solely on the comments of A FEW, "the few" who complained. What about the many who said nothing? What about the ones who call her "Barbie"?

In a courtroom, intentions (motivations) DO MATTER. Given that this is a "court of public opinion", the burden of proof is on you. You've failed to "investigate fully."

Anonymous said...

SCATS re - I was wondering if Julia will be driven to more uncontrollable sobbing when she has to tell her cronies that their school is closing?

Only if it's a school-of-choice!

SCATS said...

REMINDER: BLOG Administration is not posting comments related to the identity of SCATS or those who comment on here. That topic was put to bed 5 years ago, since no one can prove anything.

BLOG Administration is not going to debate a numbers name game that also can't be proved. Try to pretend to stay on topic, please.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else think it interesting that Lou Alaimo made his comment about needing to "move aggressively on closing a school" his parting shot? Why didn't he suggest that during the budget review? Did he have to wait until he was out the door to utter the truth? Just wondering........

SCATS said...

To 11"41AM ~~ I suspect he worried about his job security. That sort of truth is hard for GCSD to swallow when the BOE wants to keep schools-of-choice open, regardless the costs.

Anonymous said...

It's going to be a long painful year for Julia as BOE President. Schools must close. Extras must be cut. Staffing must be reduced. Is she going to be strong enough emotionally to meet these challenges? I'm not seeing it. She's already talking about including clergy on a committee again. Didn't that bring trouble to the district last time around?

Speaking of committees, how many were named last night? 15? 20? I couldn't count they were rattled off so fast. I hope this new super keeps a tight rein on things.

Anonymous said...

SCATS--your whole argument of (and I am not quoting you directly): "a few complained but what about those who did not and what about those that call her Barbie" worries me. You are feeding right into a major problem of society right now: pass the buck mentality. I feel like you are trying to gloss over the wrong you are doing with the disrespectful name calling (Babs) with pointing your finger at what others do or don't do. It would be nice if you actually owned up to the fact that yes, what you did may not have been meant to be disrespectful, but it was and still is certainly seen that way.

Anonymous said...

It is just a diminutive form. Maybe we don't have that kind of close relationship, but it is not meant negatively for most.


SCATS said...

To 1:24PM ~~ I find it disturbing to see the amount of rhetoric over a nickname that has no ill will associated with it, but a LACK OF CONCERN OVER WHERE THIS DISTRICT IS HEADED!

The real problem in Greece is people like the one you see in the mirror, 1:24PM. You are quite willing to speak up and blast the messenger for any nit-picky thing you can create (this is an example of a "created issue" if there ever was one), BUT LACK THE CAJONES TO CORRECT THE EDUCATIONALLY INSUFFICIENT MESS WITHIN GREECE CENTRAL!

I also find it rather telling & oh so typical that I've been blasted for being so negative, yet when I come out and state that maybe the new Super actually "gets it" after all, no one has even nice word to offer ;) My skin is VERY thick, but the phony issue of names stops here. That discussion HAS ENDED.

SCATS said...

To 2:51PM ~~ Of course it isn't meant as an insult. I said that from the gitgo, but the folks who pretend to be so "educated" that they transition into a discussion of Othello in their comments ignore the reality of anything they do not like, even when it's explained to them ;)

Anonymous said...

Can anyone provide a list of all the committees and the board members assigned to them that was read at last nights meeting?

Anonymous said...

It would be really interesting to see the cost impact of Mr Skeet's proposal. I suspect that if implemented, his proposal would cover the cost of AP courses and a lot of educationally sound improvements for our district. It has to cost real money to keep a school building open: admin, teaching staff, support staff, additional bus routed to take students to that school, maintenance, etc.
While we are considering which schools to close, let's realign the schools and return to a K-6 or K-8, plus HS plan. Many other districts are returning to it and finding that it wasn't so bad as it was made out to be.

Anonymous said...

Scats: Did you catch the portion of Alaimo's talk that dealt with the specifics of the tax cap? He mentioned pension rate increases and something about capital improvement projects. What were those guidelines he explained?

SCATS said...

To 5:57PM ~~ I started to try to write them down. I was soon overwhelmed by the sheer number of them.

To 8:07PM ~~ I'm sure the impact of Skeet's idea would be huge. Sadly, our district is filled with folks who throw up roadblocks at every turn. There were attempts to do that to the new Super last night when she asked for some info. Same old, same old ...

To 8:12PM ~~ Yes, I heard it and started taking notes. However, there were parts I didn't understand well enough to be able to explain them, so I left it out of my posting. I'm sure they will be revisiting these parameters often.

SCATS said...

Some of you (all three of you who read this BLOG wink, wink) really need to move on. The discussion about Babs is over. It is no more disrespectful than calling Katherine Middleton "Kate." Babs is a diminutive form of the name Barbara. Some great people go by that name, including Barbara Walters & Barbara Streisand.