Tuesday, March 27, 2012

WHERE is the PUBLIC Discussion??

We've been scammed again!

If you've lived in the Town of Greece for any length of time, then you are likely aware of one or more instances where the community has been misled by the powers that be. Guess what? It's happened again!

It turns out that the publicly held lottery to determine who gets to attend a school-of-choice in the fall was a complete sham! Yup, we were lied to again and the evidence is all over the GCSD website.

February 21st they posted:

Public Lottery to Be Held the Week of March 12
Officials have asked a retired Brockport administrator to host the Greece Central School District's public lottery sometime the week of March 12. Names will be drawn in public for open spots at the district’s open enrollment schools – Pine Brook and West Ridge elementary schools and Odyssey Academy.

March 9th they posted:

Public Lottery Set for Friday, March 16
Greece Central School District Officials today announced that the public lottery for Pine Brook, West Ridge and Odyssey will be held on Friday, March 16. The date was selected to ensure that all families had adequate time to read and complete the applications.
Officials have asked a retired administrator to host the lottery. Student ID numbers will be drawn in public for open spots in kindergarten and grade 6 at the district’s open enrollment schools.

March 13th they posted:

Public Lottery Time and Location Announced
Greece Central School District Officials today announced that the public lottery for Pine Brook, West Ridge and Odyssey will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, March 16 in room E46 at Apollo Middle School, 750 Maiden Lane. Numbers will be drawn in public for open spots in kindergarten and grade 6 at the district’s open enrollment schools.

In reality, it seems they drew numbers so that the "winners" didn't know they had won ... until contacted by District Office. How is this better than previous lotteries done in secret? The answer is that it does not!

When and where was the PUBLIC DISCUSSION to reveal how this process evolved from one of drawing names to one of drawing meaningless numbers?

If you watch this video of our recent Town Board's Resident's Forum, you will learn that the Greece Central School District has become as secretive as the Greece Town Board.

That's NOT good government for any of us!


Anonymous said...

Hey Babs, thanks for bringing such an open door policy to Greece! This is sooo much different than it's been in the past. Our BOE knew exactly what they were getting when they brought in this version of the hick from French lick.

Anonymous said...

Scats I'm not sure about your take is on the way the lottery was handled. Question ? Was numbers pulled in public as was last advertised ? If so it' s not a matter that it was held as scheduled. The question is really the format of process right ?Numbers vs names was utilized. I fail to see the problem here at all. Since each applicant would be assigned a number corresponding his or her name,I see nothing wrong with the method. The Charter School lottery is held using numbered balls. Each applicant was given two numbered balls. One was held by the applicant the other was placed in number selection device with all other applicant.When activated the air bubble device would randomly pop up a numbered ball. That corresponded the second ball held by the winner. In my opinion there was no deception here at all. If all applicants had attended the drawing, everyone there would no if they were winners or losers so would others in attendance whose number assigned to his name was picked or not The only disqualified for my rationale would be if those picking the numbers did not immediatley announce the numbers picked in order of selection. If they simply picked numbers in public and did not disclose them at that time, then they screwed up and are guilty as charged.

SCATS said...

To 2:11PM ~~ The questions here are building up as time goes on. First of all (and second and third),they told us names would be drawn. OK fine, but then without any discussion, they said they'd use student ID#s. Again, without any discussion, they said they would draw numbers. WHY NO DISCUSSION? What precipitated so many changes in such a short period of time? It casts suspicion upon the entire process!

As if that weren't bad enough, it's my understanding that the applicants weren't given their numbers BEFORE the lottery was held. If that's the case, who knows HOW DO matched those drawn numbers to the list of names? It was done out of the public eye and then the "winners" were notified, along with those on wait lists, according to what I'm hearing.

This method removes ALL credibility from the process, if it had any to begin with.

Anonymous said...

This whole district is a freaking joke! Why is it other districts seem to get things right at least most of the time, and here in Greece it's always a mess. All this crap associated with school of choice and lottery and we've never once heard why it is even necessary. DO and the BOE claimed these lottery schools were going to get into line with district demographics, yet people believed there would be a fair lottery? How would that be possible? "For every name picked from the white bin, we'll select 2 names from the black bin, two from the brown bin and one from the yellow?" That doesn't even touch the financial background demographics. It's a freaking mess! All this for what?

Now I'm hearing parents discussing what things will be offered if there child ends up, based on where they live, having to attend Odyssey rather than Olympia in years to come. Does their kid get the chance to play football or participate in activities that were not offered at Odyssey prior to now. If they will now be offered at Odyessy, we can expect greater expenses in those areas, right?

All this, and we have never been told why school of choice is needed. My husband and I have already decided we will be going private or making a move in the next year, not because things are SO bad right this minute, but because there is no concrete direction for the future. Rather than expose our family to the uncertainty, we're opting out!

Anonymous said...

2:11 There is nothing wrong with using numbers. However unlike the charter school you reference lottery applicants were not told what their number was. So if you attended or watched the pod cast it was meaningless as you would have no idea if your child "won" a spot at the time of the drawing. See the difference?

I can tell you as a parent that applied to a SOC, and have since asked DO were the LOTTO numbers provided prior to lotto drawing and subsequently informed NO they did not give parents the corresponding number to student id/name prior to drawing... GCSD DID NOT hold an open public lottery!

Anonymous said...

What I have a hard time understanding is why it is so hard to do the right thing? The people who work for GCSD get paid by the taxpayers and therefore should be held accountable for their actions. When an employee of the taxpayer is unable to answer simple requests there should be a process to compel them to answer, if not they are in breech of their contract and should be terminated immediately. The BOE is set up to monitor them and if they fail they should be recalled. What does it take to recall the members of the BOE? Does anyone know? The reason why this district does what it does is that it is not held accountable to the people that voted them in. I have always heard of their impetuous attitude, but never was it so apparent than in the podcast of the lottery. It really was a farce that unless the people of Greece rebel I can't believe this district having any form of survival. Who in their right mind as a parent would trust anything that they do.

Anonymous said...

Yet another not disclosed meeting in Greece! Apparently there was a transition meeting for Olympia this evening. There was not one place in the website was this posted. I checked Olympia, Apollo, OA, and the consolidation page. What is going on that there are private meetings for a select few? This is absolutely disgraceful!!!!!

Anonymous said...

To 9:50 pm, it was not a consolidation meeting at Olympia last evening. It was an Agency Fair for Special Education students that are aging out of the district. They have it every year. All different agencies that can assit the students with sheltered workshops and the such gather in one place to assist the families. The flyer was right on the homepage of the website, why does everything the district does turn into a big scarry secret. Sorry if you're disappointed.

Anonymous said...

11:33 I am aware of the agency fair and yes it was on every school web page. However several OA parents have said that they too had a mtg that was NOT related to the AGENCY FAIR. KWIM?

Anonymous said...

The OA transition meeting is next week. It's been mentioned in the morning announcements, which are emailed to parents daily.

SCATS said...

It seems rather clear here that the district's "efforts" to communicate about meetings are a HUGE failure!

Anonymous said...

If it is on OA announcements that means that it is exclusive To OA. I do believe that there are other schools in transition and have yet to hear of any meeting for those schools. OA is moving hardly an issue of transition!