Thursday, August 18, 2011

Let's Change What Greece Central Is Known For

Babs' Focus Group Tries To Reinvent The Wheel Instead of Recognizing What We Have & Where We Are As A Starting Point For Change!

"What do we want the Greece Central School District to be known for?" 

Here's some of what we already ARE known for:

1 - Latest suburban  "School Start" date in the county!
2 - Among the shortest suburban school years in the county.
3 - Among the shortest suburban school days in the county.
4 - Cut electives during the last two budgets!
5 - Maintains as many schools for under 12,000 students as we did for almost 15,000 students.
6 - Among the poorest performers on NY State tests in the county.
7 - Lowered graduation rates.
8 - Drop-out rates rising.
9 - Budget growing out-of-control/budget defeats commonplace.
10 - No accountability metrics for most employees to aspire to.
11 - Lack of meaningful goals that state what we want to do, how we're going to get there and some method for determining when/whether or not we've met our objective!
12 - Infighting among Board of Education members.

"What ideas and opportunities are there for improvement?"

See items 1-12 above!


Anonymous said...

Ice Cream Socials.

Anonymous said...

Several things you didn't mention, Scats,







SCATS said...

To 2:29PM ~~ I wasn't trying to be thorough, but just wanted to touch on the major things. Thanks for the additions though. They are all valid.

Anonymous said...

Anyone commenting actually go to the meeting? What was it like? Cooperation or contention?

Charlie Hubbard said...

Let us not forget the employee contracts that are not only worthless from a productivity standpoint but that cannot be paid for within the 2% property tax cap unless the state sees us grabing our ankles and feels sorry for us.

Let us not forget how contract approval was done in violation to board policy which requires disclosure of cost for each section of the contract 'prior' to voting. Remember the teamsters contract that 'increased' employer paid health insurance from 90% to 95% reguardless of cost or cost increases.

Let us not forget how the Comptrollers audit from 2008 and school board accepted identifies that contracts should identify the 'benefit to the district' - this has yet to be done.

SCATS said...

To 3:50PM ~~ Contention among the dozen attendees when they included current & retired employees? I don't think so ;)

Anonymous said...

Who were the attendees generally then SCATS? Was it the employees or did the general community actually attend?

SCATS said...

To 4:18PM ~~ The district website said attendees were required to register to attend, so I don't believe there was any general audience. Today's D&C states: "About a dozen parents and former and current district employees attended."

I don't think Babs got the numbers of participants she had hoped for, since I saw what amounted to a press release/ad yesterday on a TV website still seeking participants.

Anonymous said...

We have two urban developments in the town of Greece. We have parents that don't care and kids that don't want to be in school and our teachers are suppose to teach them. You can't teach them if they aren't there and you can't teach them if they don't want to learn. Our town is a mess.

Anonymous said...

West Irondequoit starts Sept. 1.

Anonymous said...

Charlie: What do you propose the district do when the teachers' union will not negotiate in good faith? How do you solve a labor dispute when the district doesn't have the power?

Should they violate Triborough and let the courts decide? Lock the teachers out? What's a realistic solution if the district has to work within the law?

SCATS said...

To 8:12PM ~~ Our town is in a bigger mess than most know or realize too. Shopping at the "new" Mt Read Wegmans has become a completely different experience since the Dewey Ave. Wegmans closed. There are unsupervised kids running around & creating all kinds of havoc in the store, something that NEVER happened until the past month. I can tell you these kids are not "minority" kids and they aren't from the developments you mentioned either. They are kids from white middle class homes where the parents have failed. I can't wait until the new Walmart opens because I'm pretty sure their parents are "People of Walmart" wannabes.

To 8:16PM ~~ Thanks for pointing that out. I misunderstood when I read the news item and I will correct it ASAP.

To 8:26PM ~~ I think it's time to try going to court. It strikes me as odd that avoiding court is only a "goal" in dealing with the union.

Anonymous said...

Greece Central-
Be An Athletic Supporter

(Hey, Hilton ain't using the slogan any more)

Greece Central graduating some of the oldest students in the area, and half of them CAN read their Diploma!

We're proud of our schools in Greece. They are still standing even though we hired Crista to build them.

Greece has tough Union Teachers! Tough as baby crap and twice as nasty.

You want your love trophy to graduate you damn well better DONATE.

Read the bulletins we send you, after all it cost you plenty of money for us to print them.

Greece Central, preparing today's children to be tomorrow's Inmates.

The First District in Monroe County to bus Graduates directly to the Welfare Office to sign up. Not every kid is college material!

Oh, it's almost too easy.

Anonymous said...

1. I want all of our students meeting specific academic standards before being passed on to the next grade.
2. I want parents given the option of a) manditory summer school for students on the bubble of passing those standards or 2) the student is held back by default.
3. I want graduation rates improved every year and but I do want that diploma to have real meaning.

Anonymous said...

8:12 What are the 2 urban developments in Greece? There is one at Affinity which is located at English Rd and Fetzner. Where is the other.

SCATS said...

To 4:10AM ~~ Halting "social promotion" is a very good one to add to the list!

To 8:51AM ~~ There's one out behind Sam's Club.

Anonymous said...

4:10 - all the IEP students too?

Anonymous said...

In response to what's a district to do about contract costs and tax caps, there is only one outcome. The salary tells us what we must pay an employee. The cap tells us how much we have in total to spend. Therefore, we have fewer employees to meet both demands. Layoffs coming if there is no contract relief.

Charlie Hubbard said...

to 8:26 (anonymous)
'You' say the teachers union is not negotiating in good faith - based on what? Have you seen anything in reference to the positions? Demands?

Have you once heard the 'benefit to the district' identified with a contract?
Have you once heard or seen the dollar figures for each part of a contract identified prior to approval? How about the total cost?
Heres an idea why don't we just throw the GD policy book in the garbage if we are not going to follow it - what say you?

I mentioned the healthcare cost in the teamsters contract now at 95% - what is that cost? Year 1, year 2, ect.

You brought up Triborough - what is this costing us? We love to 'talk' about this and other mandates - what are we doing about it? If Triborough is costing taxpayers $$ and is a mandate - why are we not putting presure on our local state officials for relief. If every school district identified these type of things maybe just maybe we would see some action OR we can do what we have been doing - nothing.

In conclusion you ask me what I would do and my answer is today the same as it was 4-5 years ago - put the facts and positions right out there for the public to see. If nothing else taxpayers could see the position of those that are 'suppose' to be representing them.

Most of all and I want to make this very clear - the give/aways have got to stop. Taxpayers have a right to SEE something for thier money. In the area of accountability it's time to start acting like the real world.

Anonymous said...

Charlie: No. I didn't say the teachers were bargaining in good faith.

And, you didn't answer my question at all.

Let's break it down again.

The district and the teachers have an expired contract.

They need to agree to a new contract.

The Board of Education wouldn't accept the contract offer the teachers approved.

Until a new agreement is reached, the district is bound by Triborough to adhere to the terms of the expired contract.

The question is, given these FACTS, what can the district do to force wage and benefit concessions?

Anonymous said...

BTW - 11:54's answer is getting much closer..

Anonymous said...

What else was covered at the meeting? Was "Let's Change What Greece Central Is Known For" the only topic?

SCATS said...

To 2:02PM ~~ I think 11:54's response is on the money. I also think it would be most interesting to legally challenge Triborough.

To 2:18PM ~~ The other question discussed was posted on the BLOG's front page: ""What ideas and opportunities are there for improvement?"

Charlie Hubbard said...

to 2:00 - assuming you are also the poster of 8:26 my message is very clear - your trying to be cute and very disingenuous.
I have zero tolorance for that as you no doubt know.
Therefore we are done. Take an honesty pill, give it time to work, THEN give me a call.

Anonymous said...

To 8:26 and 2:00. The administration could do as many state agencies have and present the facts to the union leadership and let them decide if they choose to take concessions or let their comrades be let go when the programs that are not mandated are cut. It is very simple to let go teachers that are working in non-mandated programs. This has been explained many times before what these are. Even Triborough does not save the jobs dissolved by program cuts.
The union can then decide if they are in this only for the fewer employees that will remain or for the greater number of employees and the students if they take wage concessions etc.

Anonymous said...

Really, Charlie? That's the best you can do? Storm off in a huff?

I'm disappointed.

All I asked is what you think the district should do to secure a fiscally equitable contract from the teachers, given the constraints of the law.

How is that "cute?"

To me, it seems like a straightforward question.

And, mea maximua culpa, I misread your first response as accusing me of saying the teachers WERE bargaining in good faith.

I'm saying they're not, and you're demanding proof of that. You must think they are bargaining in good faith?

Given how long it's taken to continue at impasse, I think someone has to be bargaining with no intent to reach an amicable agreement. So, I'd submit that the lack of a contract agreement shows bad faith on someone's part. And since the teachers have the most to lose here...I submit that they're the ones who have no intent to reach an agreement that cuts their steps, wages and benefits and imposes accountability measures.

SCATS said...

To 12:32AM ~~ Truce fellas. It appears there's been some miscommunication between the two of you. Take a deep breath ... ;)

Anonymous said...

The teacher's union should be presented with the same choice as the state employees unions were - you can take layoffs or you can take no raises for the next 3 years, unpaid furlough days and an increase in the amount you contribute to your health care insurance. Time to pony up like everyone else.

Anonymous said...

SCATS; I am intrigued by your suggestion to challenge Triborough in the courts. What would be the basis of the suit? And where would we get the finances to fight it.? I don't mean these questions as reasons not to proceed, as I said, I am honestly intrigued by your suggestion.

Anonymous said...

Obviously 12:32 is more interested in sparring with Charlie than in listening to what others have to offer.
There is the option of asking for concessions from the unions starting with the principals and exempt employees at the top to provide an exemplar. That is what the teachers unions are waiting for. If there are no union wage freezes or other concessions then there is no choice but to cut programs within state and federal requirements. Look up previous posts on scats through the search and you will find what is not state mandated that takes up 20% of our operating budget.

Anonymous said...

To 8:35 but not from scats
To challenge triborough the district would have to NOT give the step increases that happen automatically even under the stalled contract. If they did not get the increases the union and the employees would be the ones to sue. Then the district would defend itself and see what happens. It requires a little bravery.

Anonymous said...

Anyone go to last nights's Part 2?

Anonymous said...

to 10am - I went. Mostly school of choice types were there trying to keep things as they are. Does Gary Elling have a real job?

Anonymous said...

Who is Gary Elling? What was covered? Any disucssion on where Babs is taking all this? Any announcements?

Anonymous said...

i was there. The supt said a principal has resigned. But would not say who. Any idea who it is?

Anonymous said...

wouldn't it be something if it was sue meiers?