Friday, September 14, 2012

Bullying, Weapons & Fights, OH MY!



Based on a variety of sources & reports, it appears that Greece Schools began the new year facing a wide variety of problems related to school & bus consolidation, as well discipline related incidents.

With 7 full days of school under their belts, bussing issues remain with some bus runs requiring young children to be on the buses for long periods of time. Some routes regularly feature standing room only. Inexplicably, aides were only assigned to buses hauling students with IEP's at the start of the year.

I'm told Olympia HS was on lockdown due to a fight earlier this week, while GPD responded to an elementary student with a weapon on a bus run earlier today. Parents are complaining about: long lag times for teachers to return communications regarding their concerns; students being assigned lunch seats (for no apparent reason); screaming teachers; over-crowded hallways; and general chaos within the buildings.

We can be thankful Babs has it ALL under control!
 

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Scats,

You have been beating the drum for consolidation of schools and reduction of bussing and now when the district experiences during the transition you complain again.
How about you give them more than 7 days to work out the kinks?

SCATS said...

To 6PM ~~ I'm not against the consolidation. I'm having a big problem with the absolutely GLOWING school opening report delivered at Tuesday night's BOE meeting though. A good dose of truth from DO would go a long ways towards establishing some minimal levels of trust among most ;)

Anonymous said...

I wonder if teachers are having a hard time with getting back to parents because they are working well beyond their contractual hours due to this bus chaos. And... assigned lunch seats???? Is this a story? Most classrooms have assigned seats for children. If they want to assign cafeteria seats to children as well- WHO CARES????

SCATS said...

To 10:54PM ~~ Apparently the parents & children care. Why punish the kids if they weren't misbehaving? And don't tell me it's NOT punishment. Allowing kids to socialize with friends is the usual, so this would feel like punishment.

Anonymous said...

Is assigning seats in a classroom punishment??? Nope! Teachers do that on purpose to better manage their classrooms. Obviously, you wouldn't put two children together that you know wouldn't work well together. Tell me... How is this different in the cafeteria when they aren't supervised by a teacher. Maybe you are just hoping for a Karen Klein incident in the lunch room. Should the district not be allowed to assign bus seats either?

Anonymous said...

The lunch seats are a prime example of why we no longer live in Greece. I'm betting that there is a problem with a very small number of students in the cafeteria, and rather than address the 'problem', the school chooses to go about it this way. Back in Greece our kids classrooms were often ruled in this same manner: Even though he was told to, Johnny didn't wear a jacket to school (again) today. As a result nobody will get to go outside for recess after lunch, it would make Johnny feel bad.

Yes it's just lunch seats or playing outside in these cases, but it's the mentality where the innocent pay for the actions of the guilty that drives you crazy as a parent. Hearing you child continuously come home telling their class didn't get to do this, or had to do that, all because of the actions of one or two kids is maddening. And it was always the same one or two kids. The district needs to grow a set of balls, and hold the problem students (and their families) accountable, period.

In our present district we attended a school activity night last week held just for parents. The principal addressed us all in the auditorium first. A short summary, while being very pleasant, he came in and said if your kid is ever caught doing X,Y,Z... these are going to be the repercussions A,B,C...no questions. Everything from their language to the way they dress. He was met with a roaring applause! In 10 years, I never once heard a speech like that in Greece.

Anonymous said...

As far as the bussing issues, here's my thought. School consolidation is not the problem, it's the cosolidation while leaving the school of choice BS in place that creates the mess. If everybody in a given neighborhood attended the same school, like other districts (who by the way are ranked heads and shoulders above Greece) this transportation issue would be eliminated, with a great savings to the taxpayers. But of course, everybody already knows that.

SCATS said...

To 12:45AM ~~ Lunch, recess (on those rare days/times it's ever given) and the like are supposed to be times when kids get to relax a bit during their hectic & often stressful school day. They are kids! (Not little adults.) I think the teachers would be PO'd if they couldn't relax for a few over lunch too, right?

MAYBE overall behavior would be improved if the masses of kids didn't feel constantly punished for the few who don't conform. 6:58 AM's points are VERY WELL MADE!

To 7:04AM ~~ BINGO!! I can't wait to see how we're going to get Pine Brook brought into the fold next year ;)

Anonymous said...

7:04am
It is about consolidation.
It is about keeping some K-2, and 3-5 schools.
It is about combining bus runs to these schools.
It is about pine brook and west ridge sharing busses.

It is not something you pin on schools of choice alone.
I find it funny that everything is about schools of choice.

SCATS said...

To 12:48PM ~~ In Greece, "School Consolidation" has become synonymous with protecting Odyssey & Pine Brook at all costs. They can try to fool us, but some of us know much better. Example: At the "new" Odyssey, grades 9-12 have been essentially untouched by the changes. Grades 7 & 8 were already in place at Hoover Dr. for the most part. Except for the incoming 6th grade, those who were in Odyssey last year have RETAINED their old school.

Anonymous said...

Ok 12:48, now do what the board and supt. have never been able to do: explain how school of choice benefits the district students. Since we won't be hearing any more from you, have a good day!

Anonymous said...

Oh people please don't complain!!! BABS will hire yet another person to put a committee together to assign seats or look into the busing issues and then we end up paying more then just to have left it alone. She will keep passing the buck on and on and on or keep hiring people to pass the issues to. She will never be seen or take care of anything to put her name to it.

Anonymous said...

1:46pm
You have all the answers.
What's the fix? How does GSCD become a top tier educational district again.
And please don't say "get rid of schools of choice.".
How about some real ideas instead of the constant whining.

SCATS said...

To 10:03PM ~~ Until you get a BOE with a completely different mindset & clean house on DO & the classrooms, IT CAN'T HAPPEN.

Anonymous said...

10:03, while I'm not smart (or ambitious) enough to try and fix all your district's problems in one fell swoop, I am able to see the forest through the trees. You have a system that has unnecessarily cost Greece taxpayers millions and millions of dollars over the years, and nobody can show or explain how it benefits the district. What other ongoing financial expense can you point out where no proof of fairness or academic success is required? Enrollment has decreased since the 90's, yet the number of bus routes has more than doubled, all the while the academic results have continued to tumble downward. Yet you feel people need to show more proof the system isn't working? The fact is (and you already know this), there is no one answer fix to Greece's issues. But that doesn't mean you stop taking steps toward bettering the district, which is exactly what ridding Greece of SOC would do.

Anonymous said...

Greece has always been a knee-jerk reaction to the "squeaky wheel" state of mind district. What better way to solve any problems or perceived problems than to sequester all the "squeaky wheel" parents into specific schools. Make them feel special by using the term "choice". Not quite "prime" but better than the rest.
These parents by their need to oversee and be "involved" are the ones that will apply for spaces in these special "shut them up" schools. After their children are in these schools they will be less likely to complain within the building lest they get asked to "choose" to leave. This is after all a school of choice and if you don't like it you can leave. But they won't. Not anymore than the sports parent or stage parent will jeopardize their offspring's future with a complaint about a bullying coach.
When was the last time any parents complained about anything in this district. Previous to schools of choice the involved parents were scattered across the district and occasionally made a stink about supplies and equipment or staff/coach choices or long bus runs or inequality between schools or test scores. Now all those types of parents are in one place at each level. There will always be the vast majority of parents or residents or citizens that go along with the way things are just so long as you don't bother them personally. The standouts that did complain were usually placated with some bonus for their child or a better job in the district or town. This is a much easier and efficient way to deal with parents. Keep the possible malcontents contented and the rest can just go along. Seems to be working. So SOC are not for the students or the betterment of education. They are for the ease of operation of the administration.

Anonymous said...

1:46, I have shared your thoughts for a long time. Remember years ago when neighborhoods were able to discuss what is happening at the school (this kid has been doing this, this teacher has been doing that, ect.)? These discussions, which are often a valuable tool while raising kids, can't take place in Greece. Your district has been divided up by school of choice, and as a result conquered.

Charlie Hubbard said...

to 1:46 - you are right on the money. There was at one time a 'need' for schools of choice - it is now a 'want'. The worst part is because we are so divided the focus is on what (I) can get for (my) kid rather than improvements district wide.
One example - we no longer require our kids to know how to 'write' yet who cares. For sure the school of choice parents are afraid to speak up so administration thinks it's ok with the community and wooooow look how 'progressive' we are in Greece. In the mean time taxpayers and our kids are getting cheated.

chubbard005@rochester.rr.com