Monday, May 21, 2012

Odyssey Ranks 270th

   
Newsweek's 1000
List Ranks Greece Odyssey At 270th
   

54 comments:

Anonymous said...

I wonder how many of the "public" schools on the list hand pick their students via secret lotteries? Tell me where Odyssey ranks among private schools and I might be impressed. Either that, or let Odyssey's students attend based nowhere they live rather than who they know.

Anonymous said...

Next year will be a different story It would take a miracle. The new configuration beginning with the sixth grade is certain to have a negative impact on overal performance of OA as whole next year.

Anonymous said...

The negative impact on Odyssey will be nowhere near the negative impact on the 6th graders forced to attend Olympia at 11 years old. Btw, we still havent heard "why" we need school of choice.

Anonymous said...

Just to clarify:

1. 9/11 was not an inside job.
2. We really did land on the moon.
3. Obama was born in Hawaii.
4. Odyssey does not hold a secret meeting and hand-pick VIP children.

People love conspiracies, though.

SCATS said...

To 2:55PM ~~ Odyssey:
1. chooses students via a secret lottery
2. has irreproducible results
3. provides no known benefit to the Greece Central School District
4. costs more than the other schools to operate

Anonymous said...

We don't need schools of choice and never did. However our Super understands that. She also understands that it is a sensitive situation that has negative implications. She also understands that this has been a desicisive issue in this district for over a decade.With these facts in mind, she knows you can't make it go away over night.So a plan has to be designed to slowly make them disappear as painlessly as possible by applying rational arguments about some of the inequities created by their presence.such as enrollment disparities in the areas of the the demographics of attendees. I believe this to be the case beginning next year.
In my opinion what we are witnessing now is the eventual end of lottery schools of choice. Actually quite clever of DW in her soft methodical approach to making Greece Central one school district once again as is should.You know it's inevitable as resistance to proporsed New attendance zones is non existent.
In my opinion SOC's will non existent in the very near future. In reality, it comes down to existing conditions now taking place in our town and school district.

SCATS said...

To 3:43PM ~~ I'll believe that when I know for sure that Tyrone and Shondelle are sitting next to Justin and Emily daily for ELA at the "new' Odyssey.

Anonymous said...

If what your saying is true 3:43, then shame on her. If she DOES realize that school of choice is unnessicary, she should be ashamed to continue wasting taxpayers dollars just to avoid stepping up and saying so. That doesn't make her "quite clever", it makes her a wasteful coward. When you say it can't disappear overnight, you are completely wrong. The idea that an 11 kid is going to step foot into Olympia in 4 months to start one of the hardest transitions for any student is disgusting. If its taking place because the Supt. is trying to make slow changes, it's down right shameful.

Anonymous said...

If anyone actually read the article you would find out that most of the higher rated public schools actually do use lotteries, entrance exams or other means to fill their enrollment. Charters and magnet schools are included.
I think it is great that a school from Greece is on this list at all.
They should change selection process from a lottery (secret or not) to an entrance exam and create an honors academy for students who can and want a vigorous academic program.

Anonymous said...

2:55 - And the grassy knoll doesn't exist. You missed the BIG one.
Seriously, I suspect the SOC will be a piece of Greece history once (and if) the evaluation of this new program is ever implemented. Like any program that helps the privileged few but it doesn't help the mass of "about 13,500" students that the GCSD needs to be concerned with.

SCATS said...

To 7:22PM ~~ Evaluation of WHAT "new program"?

Anonymous said...

"Tyrone"?? I think I know him... Is it "Tyrone Shoelaces"??

Anonymous said...

5:48 Wake up. have you been living under a rock? Greece Central has now become an urban suburban district. No matter what school an 11 yr old walks into is going to represent a culture shock to that student. It's just the way it is and it 's not going to get better. Besides, I don't think you give our kids much credit for being able to adapt to the realities of their environment. It's you parents that are unable to cope with the transition that is taking place in Greece Those of you who can not accept this fact have For Sale signs in their yards and will move to a more suburban environment Other, and I know a few, have already pulled their kids out and registered them at AQ, Mercy MQ .

Anonymous said...

6:56, show where in the article it says, "Teachers can pull strings to bypass the lottery, regardless of where they are on a wait list", or "BOE members can get a phone call from the Supt. explaining that there kid mysteriously moved up 41 positions on the waiting list". Theres lotteries, and then there Lottie's the way GCSD does them. We still haven't heard a purpose of schools of choice yet...

Anonymous said...

I think 7:22 is referring to the "new, improved SOC"program.

SCATS said...

To 6:14AM ~~ One little nugget of truth you forgot to mention is that Olympia HS isn't just any old school. Olympia HS is the WORST performing suburban HS in the entire county."

How about we sign up YOUR 11 yr. old to take it for a test run??

To 7:01AM ~~ The purpose SOC originally had no longer exists. Today, schools-of-choice provide no benefit to the district & have no known purpose."

Anonymous said...

OK I will bite. Which Greece middle school would you recommend that I send my 11yr old to that would guarantee his safety as well as get a good education?
Something you forgot to mention. The fact that the now defunct Apollo middle school was a virtual snake pit. Some how I fail to see the difference as my 11 yr old would have gone to Apollo next year if it still existed. I know you are going say thet there is a big difference as my 11 yr old would be exposed to 17 yr olds at Olympia.Nothing new for this district given the OA situation. Trust me when I say this, but 11 yr olds at OA had to deal with the same situations as they were exposed to and witnessed inappropriate sexual conduct on the part of the 17 yr olds. They just took it in stride . If you don' t believe this happens a OA try talking to the security staff .

Anonymous said...

It says a lot about the parents that are willing to allow GCSD to create an environment that systematically put their kids in harm's way. I would be causing a ruckus at every BOE meeting until the voices of the parents are heard. But wait, there are no voices of the parents and that is why this farce of a consolidation process is taking place. Everyone from the Super to the building principals are in cahoots with screwing everyone over. I have never seen such a detached bunch of parents that doesn't give a darn about their children's education. If you truly care about your child's education, opt out of the transfer to Olympia. Ask to go elsewhere. Or better yet, ask for a tour of the school during school hours so you can witness for yourself the chaotic environment that exists, that would definitely cause the district to take notice.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't a responsible Supt. or BOE have to state the purpose of school of choice, given the additional spending that they result in? These people are all f'ing nuts! All we hear about is what financial hardships the district is under, but we have a system like school of choice with no stated purpose.

Joe Moscato said...

I have decided to weigh in on this topic. I know I will incurr the rath of Doug Skeet as he and I have argured over this issue in the past.He will disagree with my position as he has previously done on one on one confrontations. The Subject,Middle Schools ,success or failures.So here goes.
I have long held the beliefs that middle schools are a failure with regards to student achievement and development.When I was on the board, I was shocked to witness an overwhelming decline in student performance compared to how they performed as 5 th graders. Some of them simply fell off the charts in one year.Educators nationwide have grappled with this problem without a successful conclusion. Opinions ranged from maturity issues as well as the age of puberty.
What ever the cause,educators nation wide agree that middle schools are a failure. Some states have gone so far as to ban them altogether opting to return to K thru 12 configurations with surprising results
When we moved to Greece in 1960 ,middle schools were grades 7-8 . It worked well then but we were a much smaller school district.
The realities to day are much different.Middle Schools are 6-8.Overall performance at these levels are mediocre at best. We pass on failing students to the next level thru a system of Social Promotion.I some instances this system continues for the entire 3 yr experience. By the time these kids reach the .9th grade, they are totally lost and usually end up as drop outs or worse.
So basically what My position is that until we deal with the middle school problem the overal education of our children will continue to be compromised. OK Doug, your turn with your out dated views and statistics

Anonymous said...

"Today, schools-of-choice provide no benefit to the district & have no known purpose."

Good PR isn't a benefit? How about 90% of kids going to college? Not a benefit? If one kid benefits, doesn't the district?

SCATS said...

To 1:18PM ~~ Guaranteed safety at Odyssey!? Did someone guarantee your kid's safety at Odyssey??? That's quite funny!! Regarding Apollo, don't forget the "snake pit" was in deep doodoo with State Ed over their lousey performance. Watering that down with Odyssey kids seems almost just ;)

To 1:34PM ~~ Those that trult care are selling their homes & heading east.

To 1:59PM ~~ I agree 100%!!

To Joe Moscato ~~ The failure of middle schools is a FAILURE OF THE ADULTS RUNNING THEM, not the students attending them. There's NO TEACHER or ADMINSTRATOR ACCOUNTABILITY. That's the underlying issue with the failure of the American public school system. Thank God the unions are making waves to make things better (full of sarcasm).

To 2:41PM ~~ "Good PR" merely creates the illusion that GCSD has good schools when we don't. As far as 90% of kids going to college goes, tell me how many of that 90% complete college successfully after 4 years? After 6 years? After 10 years? Oh wait! You can't tell me because GCSD doesn't care to find out. The reason is that MANY students should NOT BE COLLEGE BOUND to start with! We may get 90% of them into college but we sure as hell don't get even 75% of them through college in 4 years, not even Odyssey grads ;)

Anonymous said...

If Olympia has been the shit hole that it has been for so many years, how can they justify keeping Sloane as their educational leader? She has done nothing to improve the situation, but rather she has done a great job of masking the problems, but not the state scores.

Anonymous said...

3:43 what would your take be if Tyrone and Emily became good friends and socialized with one and other as a result of having an opportunity be classmates?

SCATS said...

To 5:30PM ~~ Excellent question. In her defense, Olympia began its big slide in the mid- 90's. There are lots of others who did at least as bad as she is. I blame her for not insisting that DO get rid of the students who are attending illegally, since she claims that number is well over 1 in 5 students.

Joe Moscato said...

It is really unfair to blame Chris Sloan for the problems at Olympia. When I was a board member she tried to deal with the trouble makers by handing out long term suspensions one of the few tools available to her to deal with these trouble makers.
As I recall, that strategy back fired on her in a hurry as our newly hired gift to education, Steve Achomovitch came down hard on her, took her to the wood shed and reversed the suspensions. Now I ask you as I did then, what kind of message to you send to those. And future trouble makers?
Simple, it's open season for these types at that School.
The second question I asked of our illustrious leader was this.What message are you sending to administrators at other schools? Again simple! Unless you want to suffer the same fate as Sloan, adopt the three monkey attitude and CYA.
So her again we see an example of a problem that has plagued this district for over a decade,The failure of top administrators to back the decisions made by subordinates making them ineffective in their ability to control their buildings and their students.
Of course I never got an answer from Steve that made sense. However, the disturbing elements in our schools took his position as victory and endorsement of their disruptive behavior and unfortunately it continues today and can only get worse unless building principles receive the support from above.

SCATS said...

The following letter was posted at 1:05AM by Doug Skeet who asked that I post it here.

Joe

The only statement that is true in your posting is the following; “I have long held the beliefs that middle schools are a failure with regards to student achievement and development” That is your opinion and nothing more without supporting data. With your opinion and two dollars I can buy a cup of coffee.

Your second statement, “Educators nation wide agree that middle schools are a failure.” As I have asked you before show me supporting data to support this statement.

Your third statement, “Some states have gone so far as to ban them altogether opting to return to K thru 12 configurations with surprising results.” Please name the states so I can research the data. I have never heard of a state banning middle schools. Please show me the data of “surprising results”. Your opinions Joe, without the data.

Your fourth statement, “Middle Schools were grades 7-8. It worked well then” Again Joe that is your opinion. Worked well? Based on what? Grades? Attendance? In this organization 50% of the students are coming and 50% are leaving. If this organization is so great where are they? Most school districts have eliminated the 7/8 organization. The supportive data is to look into the grade level organization in Monroe County.

You are welcomed to have your opinions but they are not facts or in some cases even true.

Joe, everyone has their own single “Silver Bullet” to solve the educational problem. You have been on this middle school kick for years without ever showing a piece of data. The truth is that there is no single issue or way to solve educational mess. It is a very complex issue of schools, students, parents, curriculum, teacher unions, accountability, and length of school day, length of school year, attitudes and the list goes on.

I really do not have much hope for education to improve in America. That is combined with the fact that I do not have much hope for America to be able to solve her problems. It is really a sad state of affairs. Education is not a priority in America and we do not have the legislators that represent the residents to solve America’s problem. Money and apathy may have ruined both topics. You and I have lived in the “good old times”.

SCATS said...

To Joe Moscato ~~ My questions are:

1 ~ Did Sloane EVER bring the issue of illegal students attending Olympia HS to the BOE's attention as "THE" big problem plaguing her school?

2 ~ WHAT should be done about these illegally attending students?

Anonymous said...

Saying that declining student achievement is due to adding 6th graders to the 7th and 8th is akin to saying as they did in the 40's that ice cream caused polio. More cases in summer , ice cream in summer so.....
Before Greece changed to middle 6-8 schools there were terrible failing scores at the junior high 7th and 8th. Is there data that shows for years 6th graders were exceptional and after they were housed with 7th and 8th graders their scores dipped? Not saying Joe is wrong but saying it is difficult to prove either stance that changing the grade configuration hurt the student achievement. Who is to say that the scores could be worse under different circumstances?

Joe said...

Scats question one. Get real after the pasting she took would any employee go over the the super' head? I think not. Even if she did would it have done any good given that at the time the board majority was in the hands of president Roger Boily, Steve's golfing buddy.
As for number two.The board found out that the Rush Henrietta School District was having huge problem with.
" illegal" and had developed a tougher policy for those applying for a and I quote right from the state application form"APPLICATION FOR A FREE EDICATION "That's right that's what the form is called. I still have one in my files somewhere.Since our policy required a utility bill as proof of residency, we as a board passed a motion that directed ACHROMOVITCH to meet with the Super of R- H to see how they changed their requirements which resulted in a steep decline in that problem. As usual, he ignored the directive and never followed through as it would have required work on his part and did not require bringing a
Consultant.That is still a viable option if someone is willing to ask R- H how they did it successfully.

Charlie Hubbard said...

Problems at Olympia? Problems at middle school? Arcadia and Athena on the state 'need to improve list'?

Show me ONE staff member who DID NOT receive a raise for producing these results. Come on - show just one.
We should never forget this is the public education monopoly - accountability is not lacking - it DOES NOT EXIST.

chubbard005@rochester.rr.com

Anonymous said...

Charlie, your a broken record on the teacher compensation issue. Get it thru your head that aCONTRACT( I know that is afour letter word in your dictionary) is in existence that guarantees raises regardless of student performance There is only 3 ways that will change.
.1 The teachers agree to a contract containing merit based increases Badda Bing Buddy Bang, DOA
2 The state amends the Taylor Law by removing the Tribourgh amendment x@%¥€£~###= political suicide for downstate Pols.
.3 The district files for chapter 11 bankruptcy a la you former employer and gets the judge to invalidate all existing contractural agreements
All not likely to happen so please give it a rest.

SCATS said...

To 1:45PM ~~ Although you may be tired of hearing it, I subscribe to the theory that the squeeky wheel DOES get the grease. I know it may be a very long time coming, but that's fine. I hope Charlie decides to carry on. We need to keep these ideas fresh in our memories ;)

Anonymous said...

Charlie, I can't thinkof one but then again why would the y turn down what is theirs by contract? It kind of looks like we are screwed without Devine intervention. May be that is a possibility.
The Bible tells us about the sinful immoral twin cities of Sodom and Gomorrah that earned the rath of God. Abraham pleaded with God to spare them. God in response said to Abraham " FIND ME TEN JUST MEN AND I WILL SPARE THEM" Try as he did, he could not find ten nor could he find just one. In anger , God went on to level both cities as well as it' s occupants.So Charlie there is a moral to this story. See if you can find ten or just one teacher who will turn down a raise inspite of his or her performance as an educator in our district. If you are successful, maybe Greece Central will be spared the rath of god and the certain Rapture of our school district.

SCATS said...

To 2:59PM ~~ This isn't about people turning down what they've been offered/handed. It's about THEIR SUPERIORS and the POLITICIANS who created these ridiculous situations.

I heard on the news that the average member of Congress can speak at only a 10th grade level. Jay Leno commented that in 10th grade they are teaching at just a 3rd grade level!

Anonymous said...

Scatss your sqeeky wheel in need of grease theory will never work because nobody hears the sqeek but you and Charlie.
The wheel will fall off your wagon before any one greases it.and it obvious won't be the teachers who will apply the necessary lubricant.I'm sorry but Charlie is just one voice crying in the wind.

Anonymous said...

These poor incoming students entering Olympia in September will have even fewer choices of courses than ever before. This school consolidation is such a mess. For example these students will only be able to study spanish as a foreign language. No longer will asl or italian will be offered. Students at arcadia and athena still have these choices. What other programs are being eliminated that we dont know about? Where is the fairness?

SCATS said...

To 4:02PM ~~ Well, they gotta fund the extra cost of retaining Odyssey somehow ;)

Anonymous said...

Scats, it should not be at the expense of students' educational choices. Taking away opportunities from students who have benefited from the taking of asl and italian is just not right. Asl and italian have provided students with many opportunities to use their language skills through plays, field trips, travel to foreign countries and local colleges. In our community that has a sizable number of Italian-Americans and the largest deaf population in the country, this is a shame!

Anonymous said...

Scats,seeing that DO isn't doing anything about getting rid of the extra students maybe it is why Sloane is eliminating programs to help absorb the cost of these extras. Word on the street is that ASL and Italian language programs have been eliminated from Olympia. No more enrichment courses just plain ole AIS (academic intervention services) to help the extras. 

SCATS said...

To 4:28PM ~~ You missed my sarcasm, sorry. God forbid we promote academics within Greece Central.

Charlie Hubbard said...

I'm glad so many see the 'true' problem within our taxpayer funded public education monopoly.
At this point I can 'hope' that other elected officials will speak out. Heven forbid if our school board was to speak out.
I can tell readers EVERY elected official in this area is well aware of the 'true' problem within public education - those who may claim otherwise can be put in the catagory of 'hypocracy on steroids'.

There is a second item I would hope those who care about our kids would think about - after 13 years in the system do you think our kids are confussed when they reach the real world and are hit with this 'new' word called 'merit' replacing the 'old' word called 'entitlement'????

Anonymous said...

Scats, it wouldn't suprise me if it was true that they would fund Odyssey. It seems that OA gets what ever it wants. How about asking how many support staff have been added to OA as compared to Olympia?

SCATS said...

To 7:14PM ~~ Added since when? I think it's a great question, but I doubt we'll be given a straightforward response. They know that revealing the truth will anger many.

Anonymous said...

With the addition of students in the new buildings, there has to be an increase in personnel. I know that OA has added staff to accomdate the influx of new students when at Olympia no one has been added. Three new grade levels and what support staff has been added? So, the question is two fold. First, if no one has been added then it means that they were over staffed and kept these people in nice chushy jobs. Second, if they are properly staffed then it is sad that you add three grade levels and no help. Either way it sucks over there. I would hate to be a student in that school.

Anonymous said...

Scats, and you hit the jackpot! The truth is that they will never tell you what their true intentions are. Eliminating the programs and they will never tell you why, just that it has to be done. Only when it is done and the damage has happened, does the truth come out. By that timeBabs will be long gone along with all the culprits.

Anonymous said...

All 11th graders at OHS that got below an 85% on their English Exam have a mandatory retest. I asked if this was for the student or to make Olympia look better......guess what the answer was.....it was for Olympia!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

As a student I would opt out! They can't force you take a retest. What is this all about?

Anonymous said...

Was it a state test? I doubt that a state test can be retaken. As for it being a district test,then it would have no relevance whatsoever to making Olympia look good. Unless it is just for their own narcissistic appreciation.

Anonymous said...

Olympia no longer needs other services with the addition of the AVID program..... The manic urban education bullet that has cost more money and new traing and yet another curriculum to get those " in need" on track.

Anonymous said...

How many of the teachers have been given professional development in the AVID methodolgy? The program is only as good as the people that know what it is all about. I have a feeling that nothing has been done at the school in regards to training.

Anonymous said...

Greece needs to understand that Babs will fluff her staff up. She will hire her buddy's and her buddy's kids and they will only be people who will bow down to her and fudge grades and make it all wonderful. Actually she already has! When she talks she pretends that she understands and will help but in all reality she is finding out how far you will go or what your plan is.She will use phrases like "people have said" or "they have told her" don't believe her. She has been known to threaten people if your "not on board" so jump ship now or your screwed.

Anonymous said...

I attended the meeting in which Babs and the principal could not keep from laughing and joking. I am all for having a good time but not with people who are your employees. It just sends the wrong message. There is definitely a conflict of interst at play when the Sup is hanging out after work drinking and having a good time on our dime.

Anonymous said...

The constant dumbing down of our education is reason to fear the remedy fron NYS. When you start with the elimination of programs that kids like you take away the excitement of learning . "Such stories are becoming increasingly common across New York State. Poor school districts are being forced to cut electives, remedial tutoring, foreign languages and other programs and services to balance budgets. Many schools in less prosperous areas face what the state commissioner of education calls “educational insolvency.” The obvious losers are students, who will be less prepared for graduation, college and their careers. But ultimately, all New Yorkers will suffer as the lack of skilled workers becomes a long-term drain on economic activity across the state."
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/26/opinion/the-danger-in-school-spending-cuts.html?smid=pl-share