Thursday, September 15, 2011

Pinebrook Named National Blue Ribbon School

 
The Blue Ribbon Schools Program honors public and private elementary, middle, and high schools that are either high performing or have improved student achievement to high levels, especially among disadvantaged students. The program is part of a larger Department of Education effort to identify and disseminate knowledge about best school leadership and teaching practices. Each year since 1982, the U.S. Department of Education has sought out schools where students attain and maintain high academic goals, including those that beat the odds.

2011 Blue Ribbon Schools

 “We set high expectations. It’s not enough for them to just be meeting standards. We push them further to exceed standards.” ~~ Beth Boily, Principal
  
SCATS ~~ If everything is copacetic, then why is it that only Greece's schools-of-choice win awards for academic performance?
 

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

District wide we have 38% kids on free/reduced lunch (2009/10). Pinebrook had 11%. Segregating kids based on parents income is WRONG- we do it everyday in Greece. Biggest predictors of success in school is mom's education level and family income. Big deal, rich white kids scored well on standardized test at tax payers increased expense, screwing the kids left behind in higher poverty schools. 10 schools had over 40%. 6 of our schools over 50%....

Are the two Boily's married? When a school board member is married to someone in a union do they still vote on contracts, keeping schools open, etc?

Anonymous said...

Really Beth, if every principal had the "luck" that you have they too would be pushing beyond the standards. But surely you realize that your student population is in no representative of that of Greece Schools. Again the lottery that is the SOC system is highlighted because of its ability to exclude and be selective. Bravo...

Anonymous said...

1:15 It is her dad that is on the BOE ;)

Anonymous said...

It is her father in law. Not her Dad.

Anonymous said...

There is always talk about the inequities of income status between Pine Brook and the rest of Greece Elementary Schools.

I have a question.
If Pine Brook was changed and became a school of kids from the neighborhood in which it is located, would the income numbers look more or less like the rest of Greece schools? It seems to me that Pine Brook sits in a pretty affluent section of Greece. The homes are way above average value. I would suggest that the income and poverty levels would be even less representative of Greece as a whole.
Could the district do more to encourage low income families to apply for schools of choice? Maybe.
Could the district apply a weighted scale for schools of choice to more accurately reflect the entire community? Maybe.
Should schools of choice go be dismantled? Probably.

But remember that the community itself is divided into income sections. Purely neighborhood schools would likely appear even more unequal.

SCATS said...

To 4:46PM ~~ With neighborhood schools you remove the element of "luck" from winning a lottery held in secret ;) It goes to trust ... many will never trust schools-of-choice because of the appearance of impropriety via that secretive lottery over the years. I think people are willing to tolerate differences much more readily if they know that everyone is playing on the same field. We haven't been for 20+ years now. It's beyond time for change.

Anonymous said...

There is an increased cost with SOC which is not there with neighborhood schools. Parkland (66% low income) is 1.8 miles away from Pinebrook. I am glad Pinebrook kids do well, what bothers me is there is no recognition by administration that it is a segregated group, both racially and socioeconomically, and that does effect outcomes.

Anonymous said...

Maybe Pinebrook is on to something. Just in case, lets run a three year experiment. Send a cross section of kids from Parkland to Pinebrookand see if the results can be duplicated. I have my doubts but there are so few real experiments in education these days I think this would be worth a try.

Of course, in the mean time lets stop all the wasted money on bussing that has absolutly no demonstrated value to educational outcomes.

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing they didn't qualify along the "disadvantaged students" line, right?

Anonymous said...

While ANY school that excels is a reason to celebrate. wouldn't it be nice if a totally random, neighborhood school that didn't benefit from the "selection" process of a SOC could qualify for this recognition.
Maybe that should be a "goal" by 2015? How about it BOE?

SCATS said...

To 3:37AM ~~ The less expensive way to try that out would be to swap principals. Afterall, I'm SURE Parkland would win awards after just 2 years with Ms. Boily at the helm (coughcoughcough).

Anonymous said...

This shows that the bussing of the pinebrook kids does have an educational advantage. They are taken from their own neighborhood and their educational scores are better. Therefore it is the bus experience that made them smarter. If they could walk to their school like the parkland kids at affinity they would not do as well on the tests. This is according to a study conducted by the odyssey parents at their last tearjerker.
Maybe if the parkland children were bussed to autumn lane and the autumn lane kids were bussed to parkland they would do better in school because they would "feel special" and think they were going to a school of choice.

SCATS said...

To 1:23PM ~~ I think you might be onto something! Let's bus them ALL & see if everyone does better after being told they are very special ... but not "special ed" special ;)

Anonymous said...

This is one of the 3 private schools we have in Greece that have little to no special ed classes. More important no classes that include special ed kids.
The students for these schools are CHOSEN.
We all know that unfortunately not all will admit that.

Anonymous said...

First, Beth Boily was at Parkland at one point and there was no ribbon winning. Second... compating "scores" at Parkland and Pinebrook is very hard to do since Parkland is a primary school and does not have published state test scores. It is hard to base it on Brooksides scores because the population of these schools changes quite often. There are people moving in and out of the apartments quite regularly. The primary schools do have scores based on district benchmarks and end of year goals. Parkland students actually have done VERY well on these scores in the past few years.

SCATS said...

To 9:33PM ~~ Maybe the fact that Parkland did so well is a testament to the summer reading program ... ?

Anonymous said...

Hmmm Scats.... I guess we will have to wait until this years scores to determine that but you never know. Only you could think of a way to make fun of people trying to do a good thing. It is a church program that comes in and offer lunch to these kids. They invited teachers to be involved and come read with kids. Many of these children would not pick up a book all summer. Teachers VOLUNTEERED and went if they wanted to. No one asked for publicity or put it in the Greece Post and the disticts best kept secret. The volunteers that came to serve the children lunch and the voluteers that came and sat with the kids to read came because they care. I guess that is hard for you to understand.

SCATS said...

To 11:13PM ~~ Excuse me, but I don't understand your slam: "Only you could think of a way to make fun of people trying to do a good thing."

PLEASE SHOW ME WHERE I DID THAT!! I merely asked a question. You are hearing things that aren't there, not even between the lines. Rather closed-minded of you ;)

Anonymous said...

There was a previous thread where you put down a schools reading progam that was in the paper. Honestly, I don't remember which Greece school it was. There were comments about whether reading instruction was given or if teachers were just simply reading aloud to these children. There was also comments about how teachers don't do anything for free. Well.... I say, what difference does it make if they are reading to a student or having a student read to them. Both are beneficial and necessasy (especially for young, developing readers). The other comment of teachers not volunteering was way off. I would be confident in saying that more than half of the Parkland teachers voluteered their time this summer reading with their students.

Anonymous said...

What is the summer reading program? Do they give them a list and have them write book reports? Is it only at Parkland and Pinebook? Why don't they do it at the other schools?

SCATS said...

To 11:53PM ~~ First, we need to refresh your memory about what actually happened ;)

I looked back through June-August BLOGS & there was NO BLOG/thread about a "reading program" that the newspaper covered. What happened was, SCATS was criticized on a thread about a different subject for NOT BLOGGING about the bus caravan that a few teachers boarded with books and then visited with students from Longridge to read to them. I called it a PR effort, not a "volunteer" effort. It was NOT A READING PROGRAM! There was no ongoing effort.

As for teachers doing things for free, I will be addressing that throughout the school year. In fact, I've already started with a recent BLOG that showed how much $$ the BOE approved for stipends & coaching fees ;)

Regarding Parkland's teachers & their summer program, congrats to them if it was totally a no-strings/no cost attached program. (Even the Longridge caravan cost taxpayer's something.) However, as the district's smallest school, Parkland has the fewest teachers out of the 20, so they number less than 1/20th of the total teacher population, a miniscule number in the greater scheme of things.

Anonymous said...

Kudos to Pine Brook's teachers, parents and especially students. The administrators had nothing to do with this award. Interesting how it becomes theirs though.

Anonymous said...

who wrote the application and who paid for that... just so an award can be given out to make us "feel" better about a handful of middle class/upper middle class kids doing well... it is all PR. How many programs that help large numbers of kids had to be cut in the last few years so that SOC could be maintained as is????? News flash- teachers do their job with the easiest demographic of kids to teach- wow!

Anonymous said...

To 7:07pm - Your assumption that instruction at any level or in any subject area is "easy" might be a bit off base. You should be a teacher. I would be willing to bet you would be a great one....maybe even a "Blue Ribbon" winner. So, go on and change your major and make your own parents proud! Teaching is easy, obviously. By the way, I am definitely NOT a teacher. No way.

Anonymous said...

You couldn't pay me enough to be a teacher and put up with the cr@p that they do!

SCATS said...

7:07PM's point was that the school-of-choice kids ARE easier to teach, because those schools have less diverse populations, fewer special ed students etc. It's a VALID ARGUMENT ;)

Anonymous said...

what's that I hear, SCATS? An admission from you that diversity and special education status may just have an impact on ACHIEVEMENT? Or are you just saying that they are "harder to teach" which, of course, has no bearing on their achievement outcomes. This is a change in tune from your usual mantra that diversity, SES, etc. should not factor in to achievement levels.

SCATS said...

To 8:48PM ~~ You are reading way too far between the lines. School-of-choice students are pretty much all the same, no challenge for a talented teacher there ;)

Anonymous said...

No reading between the lines, SCATS. I'm responding to this:
7:07PM's point was that the school-of-choice kids ARE easier to teach, because those schools have less diverse populations, fewer special ed students etc. It's a VALID ARGUMENT ;)

Guess it's only a VALID ARGUMENT when YOU make it.

SCATS said...

To 7:03AM ~~ Like I said, you read TOO deeply. You missed my point completely! (Perhaps by design ....)