More on Redistricting

See today’s articles in the High Point Enterprise for more coverage (main article here and sidebar here).

An excerpt:

Southwest Guilford High currently does not offer a specialty program, but the themes work in the same way magnet programs func­tion at the middle and elementary level – to attract students.
“There’s nothing at Southwest that would attract students, and quite frank­ly there is no space,” Superintendent Terry Grier said during Thursday’s dis­cussion on choice options for students. Members of the Guilford County Board of Education forged through a lengthy agenda on Thursday, not reach­ing discussion until after 11:30 p.m. on a proposal to create attendance optional zones in High Point. Board member Wal­ter Childs made the motion to table dis­cussion until more board members were present.

Sounds like another installment of Grierisms! What a boneheaded remark.

E.C. 🙂


SMOD Coming to Central?

A supporter wrote in to say they hear that HP Central may be heading towards uniforms next year:

I understand that Revonda Johnson, principal of Central, is advising students and parents that Central is going to SMOD next year. Do you have any information on this? I remember that last year she mistakenly said that Central was going to a traditional schedule. Has she jumped the gun again?

If any of my Central spotters have any info to share, please pass it on.

E.C. 🙂

Many teachers see failure in students’ future: USA Today

This is a damning article from the USA Today this week: nearly one in four teachers say children will not be successful in college. According to a poll released by the National School Boards Association, even more say students today are “unmotivated to learn.”

Skip the article and go straight to the survey and report here.

An excerpt from the USA Today article:

The results were surprising even to the study’s author, Brian Perkins, a professor of education law and policy at Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven, Conn.

“I anticipated that there would be some teachers who feel that way,” he says. “What I did not anticipate was the number who responded that they didn’t think students would be successful.”

White teachers seem to have the bleakest view: 24.5% predict failure in college, higher than among black (22.1%) or Hispanic (17.6%) teachers.

Administrators paint a rosier picture: Only 7% predict the same for their students. But 15.6% say their students “are not motivated to learn.”

E.C. 🙂

Other Briefs From Last Night’s Meeting

See again complete coverage in today’s HP Enterprise and N&R.

Debate on Middle School Scheduling, here’s an excerpt from the Enterprise:

School officials are propos­ing scheduling changes for the district’s 20 middle schools, hoping to lengthen class time in core subjects such as math and English and limiting time in elective courses such as art and music.
School officials think the changes could boost academic performance among middle school students.

The Board is preparing to ask the County Board for a Certificate of Participation to help rebuild EGHS, see excerpt:

The Board of Education voted Thursday to authorize Chief Finance Officer Sharon Ozment to seek $53 million in financing through a certificate of participation for the construction during the commissioner’s meeting April 19.A certificate of participation, a type of loan that carries more expensive interest rates than a bond, does not require public approval.

The district would use $8 million in insurance funds fronted by the state Department of Public Instruction until the two agencies reach a final settlement on the high school.

“If this was any other kind of project … I would have voted no,” board member Anita Sharpe said after the vote. “I believe $53 million is too high.”

E.C. 🙂

Full Redistricting Coverage

First off, some mail from a High Point supporter:

 Mr. Huey,

I always look forward to hearing the speeches you make at the School Board meetings.  Thank you for your persistence in advocating for all children in this county.

Tonight I gave you a standing ovation from my living room in front of the TV.

Thank you for speaking on behalf of the families of High Point.  You spoke eloquently and from the heart and you captured the essence of what many of us have tried to say over the years.

I found it interesting that both Joe Alston and Bernita Sims spoke proudly of Andrews and yet want to deny other children the opportunity to attend school there.  It seems hypocritical to me, but of course I don’t pretend to understand the politics surrounding that view.

Thank you again and God Bless you and your family

Thank you for the kind words.

First, my remarks from last night, you can find them here.

Complete news coverage yesterday (N&R article, N&R Editorial, HP Enterprise)

Complete coverage today (N&R article, HP Enterprise)

As written, I support this proposal. It’s not full reversal of redistricting but it’s a start.

This leads up to 100% pure choice for almost every student in this county and it puts power in the hands of the parents, who know what’s best for their children. And in the long run, that’s the way it should be. This is NOT a repeat of the GCS High Point Lottery Scheme, in which GCS SOLICITED your choice of High Point school and then MADE your choice. And let me say this, this has nothing to do with race, as some are making it out to be. This was pure politics from the start, mainly to cover up GCS’ lack of leadership to plan for growth in High Point by failing to build adequate middle and high schools.

The NAACP’s Joe Alston and High Point city councilman Bernita Sims spoke after me, both of whom denounce the proposal and urged its rejection. I respect their opinions, but I respectfully disagree. They seem to think this is a gang-up on Andrews. Nothing is farther from the truth. It is, again, the lack of leadership and proper oversight from downtown, that has allowed Andrews to fail. I’ll say it again…GCS and Central Office allowed Andrews to fail. This has nothing to do with race or money; this is politics at its worse.

One more thing on Alston…I taught English to Alston’s son while I was at Andrews. He is a good student, I enjoyed having him in class. And I feel if Andrews was given the necessary supplies it needs to operate like a school, honor roll students like Alston can succeed even more.

Next point, Dot Kearns and Walter Childs publicly denounced the proposal yesterday. Childs called Andrews a “model school.” Doctor C., I’m taking up a collection to buy the teachers at Andrews printer cartridges so they can print their progress reports because they can’t seem to get supplies down there. Again, it is the constant state of politics and poor oversight that has allowed Andrews  to operate in the state it is in now. There are excellent teachers and staff and student at Andrews, and if given the TLC that it needs from downtown, things can grow and blossom there.

Let me remind you that Kearns has not announced if she will run again next year. Neither has Childs, whose term also expires next year.

Hooray for Garth for introducing this. Darlene Garrett supports this. Amos Quick seems as though he’s interested in studying the issue. This is definately worth watching in the weeks to come.

E.C. 🙂

Hold Your Comments on Redistricting

I have received several e-mails this morning regarding my thoughts on tonight’s GCS Board meeting in which the subject of redistricting will be introduced. To be fair and respectful, I’m asking you to hold your e-mails and comments until after the meeting, as I’m going to do the same. This is to give respect to those who will be addressing the issue tonight. But after the meeting and tomorrow, I will make my thoughts known.

Comments are Closed on this post.

E.C. 🙂

2150…954…And Counting

2150. That’s how many visitors have come to the main Website, since Dec. 1, 2006.

954. That’s how many of you have visited this Web site blog since I moved this over to its separate server last month.

Many of you are just simply curious onlookers, wondering exactly what I will say next or think of next.

Thank you.

Because it is you that continue to make this effort a true grass-roots effort. Because of you, we’re hearing that traffic and participation over at the News & Record’s Chalkboard Blog is waning a bit. I could be wrong and we don’t want to contribute to that, for they have been doing this a lot longer than I have and have been successful. So Morgan and Jennifer, please continue the blog efforts there at the N&R.

But as you know by now, I seem to take more controversial stances on issues involving our children and our schools…simply because it is our schools and our children we are talking about. And I make no excuses. Many of you are hungry to hear my opinions and my stances on policies and issues involving our children. I appreciate that. And we now have a wider audience as well because of the local and statewide feeds; remember that we have visitors from the Triangle to Charlotte, from the West to Down East and places in between reading this blog and commenting in real time.

That speaks to the technology of 2007.

I’m a person that puts it in perspective. We always seem to take two essential groups for granted in life. Our children and our most seasoned citizens. That has to stop. And with the children of Guilford County, the buck stops here with me.

I’m always giving words of thanks and expressions of gratitude because this is not a one man show; it will take the efforts of all of you to make the election next year a success. I simply want to be a public advocate for our children’s behalf. And when it is successful (notice I didn’t say ‘if’ but ‘when’), the efforts will not stop there. As I said before, I will pledge to fulfill my duty to make the best and the right decisions involving the children of this county. I will be humbly responsible to all of you, for it is you I’m asking for support.

So thank you again. And I’ll keep saying thank you. Keep reading. Keep commenting. Keep participating. And above all else, keep supporting what is right and what is needed in our schools. For it is our children who are our future.

E.C. 🙂