Friday, January 20, 2006

Giving it up for NCLB


A recent commenter said this:

"What WOULD schools have to give up for 100% of their kids to be proficient in Reading, Math & Science? Sounds pretty good to me. If you have the solution, let's get to it!"

My premise is that in a pluralistic society where the school systems are run as democracies with locally elected lay boards, making the drastic changes necessary to reach 100% proficiency of all students by 2013-2014 under NCLB is near impossible. Most communities are not willing to give up what it would take.

But, let's hear it from everyone...

What WOULD schools have to give up for 100% of their kids to be proficient in Reading, Math and Science?

34 Comments:

At Friday, January 20, 2006, Blogger 1citizen said...

Schools should give up all curricula based on constructivist ideology. By this I mean:

Reading Recovery
Balanced Literacy
Literacy Collaborative
Everyday Math
Dale Seymour Math publications
Any math program recommended by the NCTM
"Child-centered" learning.

A return to instructivist based curricula will solve 80-90% of the problem.

miller

 
At Friday, January 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

...and create just as many.

 
At Friday, January 20, 2006, Anonymous historian said...

Schools would have to give up....



meaningful standards.

:)

 
At Friday, January 20, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just ignore all kids who have already mastered the standards, which in most schools is the majority. That will really help America maintain it's world class status.

 
At Sunday, January 22, 2006, Blogger Mamacita said...

Schools would have to give up a certain percentage of their students, because, as much as we hate to acknowledge it, there are people who are never going to be proficient, and it doesn't matter how hard we and they try, and it doesn't matter what kind of program is used. Some students are NEVER going to 'get it.' Therefore, I believe that the majority of the money and curriculum and the attention should rightly go to those students who ARE capable of 'getting it;' and if a big pile of cash could go to a genuine gifted program, more's the better. I know I'll get feedback from irate SE people for this attitude and I'm sorry, but I'm really tired of seeing our smart kids neglected while scads of money is poured into programs for kids who are NOT going to 'get it' no matter what. Yeah, yeah, I'm a politically incorrect, insensitve person.

 
At Monday, January 23, 2006, Blogger annie said...

...is this a test??? cool, multiple choice:

a) their co-dependent relationships with profits-bound EDU-COMPANIES.

b) their political affiliations.

c) their ties to conservative, and business, and military interest groups.

d) their ignorance when it comes to relevant and current academic research on the implausability of the NCLB and teaching based on meeting it's demands.

e) reconstituted, government endorsed, plastic-enhanced turkey w/ gravy (and similar quasi-edible substances)entrees which are the only "meals" some children eat daily.

f) mmmmmmmmmm....

 
At Monday, January 23, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here I am Mamacita... the SE person. Dump more money into Gifted programs because it will show the most pay off? I have two kids in those programs and sure would be nice to have more money but what they really need to succeed is a well-rounded, comprehensive educational environment that teaches to different learning styles and abilities. Let's see.... where did we learn about those teaching techiniques. Oh yes, from teaching kids with special needs. Diversity is an asset not a liability if you have the insight, strength of character, and intelligence to behold it. A school that provides a fair and balanced curriuculum to all will out succeed any program that favors a perceived elitist group. Perhaps not on standardized tests as we know them but more importantly in the real world.

Perhaps a moral argument is not teaching to your ability level. Let's try one that hits in the pocketbook. These kids you speak of who are not able to "get it" can be ignored, underfunded and marginalized in our educational system. Then tax payers pay more down the road to provide for these people we tossed aside as uneducable. On the other hand, we pay a little more up front to support people who can become productive members of their community. Seems like a no brainer to me.

And finally, yes, I am a parent to one of those kids in SE. As far as her "getting it".... she will probably never score high enough on a standardized test for your approval. On the other hand, I would put my money on her any day over you when it comes to common sense, strength of character and common decency. She "gets it". period.

 
At Monday, January 23, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. This whole exchange just SCREAMS for one simple solution. Why not let parents decide where their kids attend schools? Under that arrangement, the GT parent can seek out a school that gives appropriate attention to GT needs; and the SE parent can seek out a school that gives appropriate attention to SE needs.

Of course, the educrats will argue (as will the parents that they have brainwashed with their mythical horror stories) that all schools in that situation will focus on GT. But existing choice programs - including charter schools and voucher programs throughout the country - prove the absolute opposite! The overwhelming majority of students who seek those programs rank among the worst performing students in the schools they seek to leave! And why do THOSE parents make a choice? Because the local district is not meeting their needs. It's that simple. If the district IS meeting their needs, then they do not seek a choice.

It even works for SE, as long as ALL the dollars appropriated for SE actually follow the kids to the school of choice. If there is demand - at either the GT end of the spectrum OR the SE end of the spectrum - then suppliers will come to that need. Experience bares that out -- with absolute clarity. THAT is the market system that educrats love to vilify; and which people like SUPER just simply don't understand.

Returning to the original question: Choice would also allow parents of students who are not reaching proficiency - and who SUPER, mamacita and others say will NEVER reach proficiency - to seek another school. Where, pray tell, is the moral ground for forcing parents of these students to keep their kids in a school where the leadership says they will NEVER succeed? That's not immoral; it's criminal! (Or it OUGHT to be!)

What is the difference between that and a doctor who tells you that there is no cure for your terminal illness? Nobody in our society would agree that the patient in that situation has no option to seek another opinion or other treatment options. But that is precisely what we do in education. Educrats like SUPER declare that some certain percentage of their kids will never meet minimum performance expectations; and yet, they stand at the door of the school, like some reverse scene from 1963 Alabama, and refuse to let these students leave.

Why?

Where is the moral grounds for that?

Why is there no outrage?

Well, in fact, there IS outrage. It is growing and it will win. It the greatest civil rights battle of our generation. And the bigots of low expectations will ultimately lose -- just like George Wallace ultimately lost. The only unknown is this: will the modern bigots like Super ever do a mea culpe, as George Wallace finally did in his old age?

Only time will tell. Unfortunately, while time ticks on, another generation of kids remains trapped in these factories of low expectations.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous rous said...

Anonymous, please document the places where parents are currently being forced to keep their kids in a school where the leadership says they will never succeed.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

rous,

All you need to do is look at the thousands of comments made by school adminstrators since the passage of NCLB stating that 100% proficiency, as called for in the law, is "unreasonable" or even "impossible." If you say that 100% proficiency is not possible, then you are also saying that some percentage students will not succeed. There is no other way to interpret such comments.

Now, some might say that there are "other things" that measure "success." But whatever those might be, you are either foolish or naive to think those things will carry you through life without also having mastered the BASIC math and language skills that are assessed on our state tests. As noted earlier, these are BASIC skills, NOT advanced skills or even college prep skills. And regardless of whether you go into engineering or music, accounting or art, a technical job or a "people job", your chances of success are almost nil if you do not have a BASIC grounding in math and language.

So, again, if the local public school is unwilling to educate a particular set of students -- or incapable of educating them -- or even if their parents have a different set of priorities -- why not let those children go? "Get out of the doorway, Mr. Modern-Day Wallace, and let them go!"

It doesn't even matter if the failure to educate these kids is the result of inability or intentional disregard. If a doctor could not take care of you, you'd find another doctor -- and society would completely support your right to do so. But in education... no way.

Why is that?

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What would schools have to give up in order for 100% of their kids to be proficient? BASING MAJOR DECISIONS ON ONE TEST!! For those of you who haven't been in school for awhile, go visit an Econ class, a Chem/Phys class. Critics need the opportunity to take the GQE--I doubt that many would pass it. Life is about more than taking 1 test.
Mamacita--there are gifted students who are also in special education. You can't simply lump SE and GT into separate categories. Many students with learning disabilities and other special neds do pass the GQE, do graduate with a diploma, do go onto college. Your idea of giving the majority of the money and attention to those that can do it reminds me of Hitler--separating the weak from the superior, however you define that to be, which in this case is passing a test. Sounds like you possess a white robe and spend your time burning crosses as well.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just for everyone's clarification, there are multiple people posting under "anonymous."

I am not the "anonymous" who equates mamacita to a Nazi or a racist, just because she thinks GT students should have more attention. I do not agree with mamacita's suggestion that some kids will never learn (echoed by SUPER and far too many other educators); but I DO support her ability to criticize the lack of attention given to GT students and her desire to see better support for own GT student. There is nothing that desire that rates as being racist.

IN FACT, let's examine further the suggestion that GT advocacy is racist at all. Doesn't that line of thinking require an assumption that minorities are NOT GT? What better example is there of the president's "soft bigotry of low expectations?" As far as anyone on this list knows, mamacita IS a minority. He/she might even be a poor minority. Yet, the other "anonymous" calls her racist for seeking more support for her GT student.

I think the REAL racist in this exchange has revealed himself.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous rous said...

Rous said: "Please document where children are being forced to attend a school...."

Anonymous said a bunch of things that I'm sure are interesting, but don't answer the question I asked.

Perhaps it will help if I re-phrase the question using caps.

Anonymous, please DOCUMENT
the places where parents are being forced to keep their KIDS in a school where the leadership says they will never succeed.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Rous,

Please DOCUMENT where public schools are letting parents choose the best educational setting for their children.

As for your question: 1) It's been answered; 2) if you want documention, go read the newspaper, an education journal or any other publication where educators comment regularly. You'll find PLENTY of educators who 1) think 100% passage of state tests is "impossible" and 2) oppose letting families exercise choice.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am the first "annonymous" who posted to mamacita. And I agree wholeheartedly with the comparison to Nazi Germany by another poster. It is not her advocacy of
GT programs that raises red flags. It's the insinuation that money spent on SE programs is money down the drain because "these kids" will never "get it". It's a quick and slippery slope from marginalizing a human being as not being able to "get it" to genocide. If you don't believe me, check out the statistics for the abortion of fetuses with anomolies that indicate mental retardation. Mamacita equated that more money should be spent on the academically elite because inherently they are worth more. Assessing a child's worth by their IQ? I find it impossible to excuse that behavior. Pitting GE students against those that will never "get it" is reprehensible.

My daughter in the SE program can read at a grade level only two years below her current grade. She can perform multiple digit addition, subtraction and perform higher level math skills with a caluclator. She is an independent thinker who posseses great common sense and integrity. Yet, she will probably never pass the ISTEP. She is on the road to becoming a contributing, working member of society.

How did this happen? Not by sending her to a specialized school. Not by casting her aside in a segregated classroom. Not by marginalizing her as an SE student that will never get it. She is succeeding because she has been held accountable to high but reasonable standards, educating her in an ethinically diverse and academically diverse typical classroom. The answer is not to offer us a "choice" in schools. The answer is to provide fair and equitable schools in every community where each child can learn to the best of their ability. An ability, I might add, that could never be accessed by one test.

Next, having had the opportunity to speak with many Indiana superintendents.... I have never experienced what a previous poster referred to superintendent remarks regarding SE students who will never "get it". Many have stated that SE students will rarely show AYP as demanded by NCLB because it is based on false assumptions, poor research, and narrow indicators.

Finally, as a parent of a SE student... please tell me what my choices would be. The only other schools within a 50 mile radius of my home (that are not public) are parochial and private schools. These schools wouldn't accept my child if I paid double tuition (accept for maybe the local church school which accepts SE kids if you regularly make large donations). My kid's ISTEP score would horribly skew their precious standards as an elite academic institution. And frankly, I'd take my public school over any of theirs on any day for any of my children.

now known as annonymous one

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

OF COURSE there won't be any documentation of a school telling an individual parent that his or her child won't succeed and then forcing that child to stay in the same school. But that would actually be a great way to add some transparency to all of this. Next time a superintendent, principal, teacher, etc. says that 100% will never pass the ISTEP let's demand that they name names. Of course, they'll hide behind privacy laws to avoid that one. So instead, let's require them to send letters to the parents of those kids stating, "For x reason, I have determined that your student will never reach the minumum math and language skills that are tested on ISTEP."

I'd even support a reduction in the achievement expectations under NCLB by the number of students whose parents get these letters. If half the students in the district get such letters, then only the other half are required to pass the test.

Any takers?

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

SE parent - As you cast your apersions to your local private schools, you need to remember that the SE dollas, which you have clearly stated are important, are legally FORBIDDEN from going to a private school. Nonetheless, private schools do accept SE students and they provide services to best they can without the SE financial support. OF COURSE, they don't have as many SE students as the public schools; but public schools get THOUSANDS of more dollars for every SE kid they enroll. The private schools get zero.

Florida has actually changed this by allowing SE money to follow the student. Parents LOVE the program because their students are excelling. Indeed, with all due respect, if your own SE child is only two grade levels behind, then it is really a shame that your local school district has convinced you that he will never pass ISTEP.

Do you realize that our high school exit exam, for example, is based primarily on 8th grade standards? To graduate from high school in Indiana a student must get correct answers on 40-45 percent of test questions, where 30 percent come from basic/pre-algebra and 70 percent come from our 8th grade standards or lower. So all you need to do is correctly answer a portion of the 8th grade questions and you will do well enough to pass. By my calculation, that's four grade levels behind, not two -- so your child really does have a chance to pass.

Finally, with all due respect, I've just read mamacita's post for the fourth time; and I really don't see what she is saying that you are not also saying. BOTH of you have said that some SE students will never pass ISTEP. She used the slang phrase, "never get it," but her overal message was exactly the same.

Frankly, I just disagree with both of you. But I don't think either of you is a Nazi or a racist.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did mamacita suggest that your SE child should be shipped off to a guarded camp, worked to the bone and gassed? Did she suggest that he ought to be lynched?

Let's just stop with the ridiculous name-calling. How offensive. How freaking ignorant. You all ought to be ashamed of yourselves. I really hope none of you are teachers.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Blogger Indiana Public School Superintendent said...

The Super never said, "Some kids will never learn." The Super asked what schools would have to "give up" to get to 100% proficiency on a single test.

To call this bigotry is quite a leap.

If people would step back from the fray and look at this issue, you might find that the very comments made here kind of prove my premise.

In a pluralistic society, where schools are governed by elected political officers, the sacrifices necessary to get to 100% are too drastic for most of them.

Someone says, "give up some of the special ed funding" and then someone says, no give up the "GT funding" because most of them are already proficient and in the end society says, "keep them both." There are no throw away children.

Again, this is why school boards find it easy to add a program but near impossible to eliminate one in a political model.

Ultimately America will have to decide whether or not a "cutting edge, performance-driven agenda" that requires quick decisions (you know - get those specs down to a thousandth of an inch) can be accompished in a political governance model like we have now.

I think ultimately schools will continue to make steady progress towards proficiency but realism tells me 100% is an excellent and noble mission but not real practical as a law.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous rous said...

Can someone, anyone please tell me where the schools are being forced to be in any kind of a school? Anonymous wants to answer my question by veering off into some discussion of whether or not someone thinks some child will succeed or not. I guess that means that they can't think of any school where parents are being forced to send their children.

So how about the rest of you. Outside of a court placement, exactly where are parents being forced to send their child to any kind of school?

I find it interesting that the "school choice" proponents always use terminology which suggests parents are "forced" to send their children to poor schools because they don't have an "education welfare"/voucher check in their hands. As of yet, on this site and others, I have not had anyone identify those schools.

Maybe they are out there. Fine. Just identify them.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those are some fine comments, SUPER. Now why not go on record and say that for those kids who cannot reach proficiency you will support allowing their parents to take the funds that taxpayers have given for their educations to choose another school where they might reach proficiency? Just as the second opinion in a medical situation might result in the exact same diagnosis as the first, why would you not let them at least seek the second? Or even the third? Or the fourth? Sometimes those diagnoses really are wrong! And maybe, just occassionally, yours are too.

And if letting all the money follow the kid is just too much for you to swallow, then how about letting just a small percentage of the funds (a small percentage of the federal funds, which are a small percentage of ALL funds) to be used, at the parents' discretion, to seek tutoring or choose another school within your own district (if any options even exist)?

Back to how this all got started, that last paragraph is all that NCLB does. Please tell me, SUPER, where is the "mandate" in that? Where is the unreasonable accountability?

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

rous,

Here's a link with a directory of public schools in Indiana: http://mustang.doe.state.in.us/SEARCH/search.cfm. And here's a site where you can download, among other things, free/reduced lunch rates: http://mustang.doe.state.in.us/SAS/sas1.cfm

Now, choose any of the schools that have a high free/reduced lunch rate and you'll find a similar percentage of kids in that school that have never had a choice of what school they attend. And more than likely, it is also a school that is full of kids that are failing.

Frankly, I'd argue that a lot more families don't have choices, but I'll go ahead and stoop your level and dismiss those all families above free/reduced lunch level who, I am certain, you think can pick up and move to any district they want or can choose (and afford) a private school at any time they so like. Gosh, we are a mobile society, right? So I guess if we can't afford private school, then we can just get up and move. That's the choice you're talking about, isn't it?

Well, certainly you won't make the same argument about families that qualify for free/reduced lunch. (That's 185 percent of the poverty level -- about $38k for a family of four -- for those of you who don't work in education.)

There! I've finally done your work for you, Rous. You happy now?

I doubt it.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous rous said...

Anonymous, actually, I am happy. Fortunately for me, my happiness has nothing to do with your willingness to answer my question. However, aside from that, I did check out that website. It was really cool! I din't know there were websites like that.

I thought I would look at school data from the two largest cities/schools in Indiana, Indianapolis and Fort Wayne. It appeared that both offered magnet schools. It also appeared that Fort Wayne offered school choice even without having to move. The Indianapolis website referred to options, but it wasn't as clear as Fort Wayne. But clearly there were choices available as far as I could tell.

It was also interesting that as I clicked on different schools' data that some reported Istep results that consistently exceeded the state average and some that were below the average. I don't know about you, Anonymous, but if my child were in one of those schools that consistently scored below the state average, I would do whatever I could to get them into a different school. What responsible parent wouldn't? In Fort Wayne, I wouldn't even have to move!

But even if I did have to move, would that be the end of the world? Is it ridiculous beyond belief to expect parents to get off of their rear ends and make sure that their child has the best opportunity possible?

What school my children would attend was a prime factor in my housing decision. The same thing was true for most of my friends. Some made considerable financial sacrifice so that they could be in the school district that would give their children the best opportunity for success.

In addition, I don't buy the argument that money is that much of a factor. When the most transient populations are the ones most highly correlated with free lunches, mobility wouldn't seem to be a barrier. I would guess that there are a lot of people who move for a lot of reasons that are not nearly as important as their child's education. Even if it is a hardship, what would be more worth the effort?

I don't buy the idea that if you give people education welfare checks that they will magically begin to make better decisions with that money than they did with their own money. If you believe that, I would encourage you to go to a supermarket in a low income area the first week of each month and observe the purchasing patterns.

Neither do I buy the idea that parents are hapless victims of a government school monopoly that need to be rescued by do-gooders who want to take my tax dollars and reward bad decision making.

It is interesting how the politics of income redistribution and victimization are re-framed when it suits a political agenda.

Obviously there are people out there who are willing to buy that line of thinking. I'm just not one of them.

Finally, I guess I will just have to assume that since you can't tell me what schools parents are forced to send their children to, there must not be any.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay, rous, I give. The world really is fine. You are right. The only people in bad schools are the ones who are just too darned lazy to get off their butts. Heck, those poor folks move around all the time anyway, so they should just move to a decent district. I am SURE that there is affordable housing in the assigned service area of every decent school out there. So these lazy slobs should just MOVE! Stop their belly aching! It's all for a good cause!

You are absolutely right, rous. Those poor people are irresponsible with every handout that we, the altruistic class, give them. Just look at what they buy at the store. All junk. Look at the health care they choose. Quacks. Look at the houses they buy. Dumps.

I guess you're a lot like me, rous. When we got our government vouchers for education, we made GOOD choices. That school down the street looked just fine, so we took it! And whatever concerns we did have, we took care of that before we moved in.

If other people would make good choices like us, then the world would be so much better. Instead, we have all these stupid poor people who just aren't willing to do anything for their kids. Maybe they NEED someone to tell them what school to choose. They sure could use some food advisors too, cause those grocery choices are atrocious!

Oh yeah, and let's not forget those magnet programs! Not only do we give these poor folks education vouchers, but we sugarcoat them with so many flavors!

I had a friend -- just this fall -- who was helping an Indianapolis kid make a choice. (My friend is another member of the altruism club.) That kid had something like SEVEN schools to choose from! And a couple of them actually had about 50 percent of the kids passing ISTEP! And ALMOST 50 percent of the kids graduating!

I never did hear if he made it through the lottery for his 1st, 2nd or 3rd choices. But what the heck, if he didn't, then his fat, lazy mother can just get off her butt and move to Zionsville or Carmel or someplace like that. I'm pretty sure that the Metro bus goes up there so she can make it to both of her jobs. Do you think I should check on that to help her out? We do need to keep that altuistic spirit, now don't we, rous? (Mental note: check to see if Carmel bus runs past midnight to cover late shift.)

You are so right, rous. You and me. We're among the smart, hard working class. Has absolutely NOTHING to do with money. We just make good decisions. Those poor parents... well, they're just lazy. And by god, YOU ARE RIGHT, they eat like crap too! And they dress bad! And their yards look bad! And when they're waiting for the Metro bus, well... they make the streets look bad!

Not you and me, rous. We make GOOD decisions! Nobody ever told US where to send our kids. We just moved to the neighborhood where there were smart choices to be made.

Sorry to waste all your time today, rous. But THANK YOU for setting me straight. I feel MUCH better about things.

Got to go now. I've got some grocery shopping to do. And thank GOODNESS, I don't go to one of the groceries where welfare moms buy all that junk food with their food vouchers. That just grosses me out...

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Blogger Mamacita said...

Um, before all the name-calling began, I made a comment about how I thought it was unfair that GT kids got nothing, while the majority of the money went for remediation programs, etc. My own children spent the majority of their elementary years out in the hall, tutoring the slow students. They were taught virtually nothing, because all the time and energy was spent in trying desperately to get these other children caught up. I believe that were it not for the push for standardized test scores to be high, our slower students might have more of a chance to be taught slowly and with patience. Now, the teachers don't have the time, plain and simple, to be both slow AND fast, for both kinds of children, so they're chosen 'slow.' Vouchers? I'm all for it. Public schools need to clean up their act, and allowing parents to send their kids to the school of their choice might just be a way. Transportation? That would, of course, be the parents' responsibility, and whatta you bet many of them would not want, or be able, to go that far. I am not a Nazi and I resent the implication of racism. I teach remedial adults all day, and most of them are a direct result of the public schools' failure to recognize their needs and give them the slow and compassionate instruction they so desperately needed when they were ten. Why must the needs of ANY cluster trump out the needs of another? Yes, I'm all about the GT education. I saw what the school's slow pace did to my kids. But in working with my adults, at the community college level, I also see the failure of the system to aid them, too. So, who are we actually helping then?

Why are people commenting anonymously? Are they ashamed or embarassed to identify themselves? I don't usually respond in any way to anonymous notes. If someone has something to say, let him/her sign their name.

 
At Tuesday, January 24, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you, mamacita. Whether people agree with you or not, the implications of racism, etc. were outrageous and undeserved.

As for the anonymity of posts, it is SUPER who has set that tone. I would gladly identify myself -- as I suspect would others -- if the host would identify himself. Unfortunately, the public official who runs this post wants the ability to bash the governor, the president, Republicans in general and others without the scrutiny of those he serves. So be it.

I actually participate elsewhere using both my first and last name. The tone is definitely better that way. And you don't get hosts and other participants who toss out unsubstantiated claims against real people.

 
At Wednesday, January 25, 2006, Blogger Mamacita said...

It is the prerogative of the webmeister to use any name he/she chooses. The webmeister posts, and the commenters comment. He/she is the host and we are the guests. We don't have to come here. Anyone who doesn't approve of the webmeister's methods is free to comment elsewhere, more to his/her liking.

AS for me, I like the Super, whoever he/she might be. I do not dictate to someone how his/her blog is set up. That's not my business.

I just think it is more courteous if the commenters signed their names/gave a point of contact, particularly when the commenter is finding fault or arguing.

 
At Wednesday, January 25, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No disagreement here. Completely the prerogative of the host. Agreed! This has nothing to do with "approval" or disappoval. But if the host remains anonymous, then I see no reason why the guests should id themselves. Particularly, as you say, when the commentator, including the HOST, "is finding fault or arguing" -- as the host does regularly with positions taken by tht governor and others.

 
At Wednesday, January 25, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Throughout history,
people with physical and mental disabilities
have been abandoned at birth,
banished from society,
used as court jesters,
drowned and burned during The Inquisition,
gassed in Nazi Germany,
and still continue to be segregated, institutionalized,
tortured in the name of behaviour management,
abused, raped, euthanized, and murdered.
Now, for the first time, people with disabilities are
taking their rightful place as fully contributing citizens.
The danger is that we will respond with remediation and
benevolence rather than equity and respect. And so, we offer you
A Credo for Support

Do Not see my disability as the problem.
Recognize that my disability is an attribute.

Do Not see my disability as a deficit.
It is you who see me as deviant and helpless.

Do Not try to fix me because I am not broken.
Support me. I can make my
contribution to the community in my own way.

Do Not see me as your client. I am your fellow citizen.
See me as your neighbour. Remember, none of us can be self-sufficient.

Do Not try to modify my behaviour.
Be still & listen. What you define as
inappropriate may be my attempt to
communicate with you in the only way I can.

etc. etc. etc.

Dedicated to the memory of Tracy Latimer

(c)1996 Norman Kunc and Emma Van der Klift

SE parent (so that Mamacita is not confused that I am another annonymous person)

If you doubt the comments you make are prejudiced or bigoted about kids with special needs, then substitute any minority group in the place of SE kids, such as hispanic, black, jewish.... then say the comment. If it still sounds open minded, then you probably aren't being bigoted. Achild's value should not be predicated on his/her IQ or ISTEP score any more than it should be predicted by religion, ethnicity, skin color, gender or socioeconomic background.

 
At Wednesday, January 25, 2006, Anonymous historian said...

Anonymous, you could differentiate yourself from others, and still remain anonymous. Just an idea. Pick something that helps define yourself, and differentiates you from other people who wish to remain anonymous, as well. Be "Indyguy", or "HoosierFan", or "Superbloggerisanonymoussoamiarenticool".

Just semantics, not politics. :) (by the way, you can do this by selecting "Other" in the "Choose an identity" area when posting comments...

 
At Wednesday, January 25, 2006, Blogger Mamacita said...

Name-calling usually happens only when someone is losing an argument. No logic? Resort to name-calling.

I generally debate only with people who identify themselves.

As for the labels. . . . if you knew me, you'd know better.

 
At Wednesday, January 25, 2006, Anonymous rous said...

Anonymous, do you find it ironic that as someone who seems to come at issues from the right side of the political spectrum you find yourself in the position of criticizing me for expecting personal responsiblity while your solution appears to be to provide handouts?

 
At Thursday, January 26, 2006, Blogger annie said...

WOWWWWEEEEE, Supe, i see you've got an infiltration of the "america--do it my way or leave" club ( formerly known as: "love it or leave it."

I think the anonymity stimulates a lot of grandstanding and theater when, in fact, in real life, nothing much occurs ( that is if you think action counts)

but the name calling is so off course. amazing how much time is wasted when so much needs to be done.

my best to you--i understood your point. there is nothing anyone or any one school could do or change to erase mental retardation, learning disabilities, economic boundaries, giftedness, wealth, poverty, etc, etc, etc...

isn't that a silly idea to consider? about as silly as much of the premise and policy of the act...

 
At Thursday, January 26, 2006, Blogger Indiana Public School Superintendent said...

That's what I like about you Annie- you call 'em as you see em! You should e-mail me and let me know how your east coast parent project is going!

It's hard to even have a civil discussion about what to give up to get to 100% proficiency on a high stakes high standards state test.!! And...we haven't even debated whether or not this is a great idea for society or not!

I think the rambling tirades make the point clear. There is no consensus in most communities on what to give up. Larry Lezotte calls it "organized abandonment" which he says schools seldom do. The reason in my opinion? The governance structure is based on a political model which is not designed to initiate or manage rapid change.

The political model creates and encourages school boards that are generally saddled with a serious case of "risk-aversion" when small packs of angry patrons pack a board room - especially when they happen to be the neighbors! :-)

The positive side to this? One political science expert said it this way, "In a democracy, a decision made by the people will always be superior to a technical expert." The reason? Because it's a democracy and the will of the people is important. Not just decision making by the elites.

And...as one of our frequent posters reminded me, "I work for the people in the community."

 

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