Monday, April 09, 2012

Winning The SOC Lottery ...

  
Holding Winners &
District Office Accountable

At last week's Greece BOE meeting, some of the questions raised by this BLOG related to how the school-of-choice lottery was conducted were addressed. According to Carol Pallas, complaints were made by parents who didn't want their child's name or student ID number read aloud as a lottery "winner." Thus the change was made to a random number drawing that was then matched to a student. Of course, "winners' " names were kept quiet. But why would anyone care?

According to Pallas, it turns out that now that the lottery is over, many who "won" slots had no intention of allowing/wanting their child to attend a school-of-choice next fall. So District Office permits them to say "no thank you" after the fact, while others on the waiting lists are then contacted and told their number has come up.

SCATS ~~ This entire arrangement wastes time, keeps suspicions about the fairness of the lottery fresh, gives "winning" parents undeserved bragging rights and serves to cater to a group of indecisive but "involved" parents, falsely labeled as such. It's time to make these Greece parents accountable in the lottery process, instead of "protecting" them for bailing out after winning a slot. The way to do that is to tell everyone:
  • the lottery will draw the names of those who win openings and,
  • winners ARE EXPECTED TO ATTEND THAT SCHOOL in the fall, period.
   

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

This school of choice situation is nothing but a joke.

The idea we are using winners and losers tells just how stupid this program is.

Anonymous said...

It's just a way of placing students in the buildings that the administration wants them in. They try to make it something to be desired hence the lottery and the possibility of being chosen. But what about all the kids in the newly formed school of choice at Apollo? There is no choice there. And those that wanted to be in a smaller Odyssey school are now thrust into a very large school. No matter how you divide it into school within a school it is still a big setting. Nothing wrong with that.
There is no inalienable right to be placed in a particular school in your district. The boundaries of each district in NY are protected by state law and the boards in each decide how to locate the students. We could have 21 k-12 buildings or we could have buildings that each housed a single grade level. Absurd but possible.
They know whatever they do is fine so stop complaining. There is no way any parent can change the system. The board rules along with the superintendent.
And there is no law which protects us from the possible lies or deceptions of the board or administration in this regard. We can complain, but (unless they feel guilty for misleading)there is no penalty.

SCATS said...

To 11:23AM ~~ "Whatever they do" is NOT fine! In fact, they had to admit that the be all, end all weighted lottery for Pine Brook FAILED to do what they claimed they sought to do. I'm not sure I'll ever believe they want to balance demographics in that school.

As long as it's my inalienable right to complain, I'll continue. Thank you VERY much :D

Anonymous said...

You are sounding more and more like Rupert Murdoch and his infamous World news. We all know what happened to that paper. Gossip and more gossip with no facts. Or just the facts according to you which have no accuracy at all.

Anonymous said...

Hey Babs, wasn't it about 6 months ago that a former BOE member asked you, publicly, what the purpose of school of choice is. You never answered the question that night, and to my knowledge, you still haven't. Is it any wonder our district is in the shape it's in, given its leadership?

SCATS said...

To 1:02PM ~~ You might want to try attending a BOE meeting sometime ;)
If that doesn't work, then read Board Briefs where it states: "A weighted lottery was used for Pine Brook Elementary School in an effort to achieve a balance of students that mirror’s our district population. The weighted lottery did not yield the desired balance and therefore, Dr. Pallas recommended using priority assignment in the
future.

Anonymous said...

This is the beginning of the end for the SOC system. The sooner this happens the better off for everyone.I believe the Super will begin to phase them out beginning at the. Elementary level. This issue has served to divide this district for much too long.It's time to be ONE school district again as it successfully was in the past.

SCATS said...

To 9:57AM ~~ I thought so too, initially. I'm no longer convinced of that. There's been too many manipulations to save this thing or that method along the way. The tail is still firmly grasping the dog, as it swings him around.

Anonymous said...

When I went to Greece schools everybody understood that Athena was the richest school, Arcadia was in the middle, and Olympia was poorest. I guess those were the good old days. Can't wait to have them back. Sure is fair.