Thursday, August 21, 2008

Carrick Engineering Magnet

On another post Newbie wrote "I know I am looking several years ahead and won't have a high school student to worry about soon. I watched the school board meeting and feel confused. There was discussion of a program being at Carrick and turning into a magnet in 2009. Apparently Allderdice has an engineering magnet already. Why are some board members worried about kids not wanting to travel to Carrick and talking about magnets needing to be centrally located yet the engineering magnet could hardly be called centrally located? I know many people who love the magnet programs. Location is a bigger issue in high school than in elementary or middle, right? I probably won't watch another meeting. I will read the blog. So thanks. "

We will have to watch the broadcast, but do you mean that the Allderdice engineering magnet could hardly be called centrally located, or the proposed Carrick magnet is not central? Another question is- if the district is moving to theme based schools- why is Carrick remaining a comprehensive school with a magnet?


newbie said...

I am way out of my league and unable to answer. I think they were saying that Carrick is too far south to attract students to a magnet like the one being discussed and the administration said we have too few students to operate two.

newbie said...

To clarify, the Allderdice magnet is engineering. The Carrick is NOT Engineering. It is something else. Or was the Allderdice program an academy? Sorry.

Questioner said...

Today's television broadcast also helped to clarify the issue. On the agenda is a vote to create a Business and Technology magnet at Carrick, building on a non-magnet program now there.

Some board members pointed out that the first notice that the Carrick program would be a magnet is coming just a week before the vote, and that a study of the magnet system in Pittsburgh has been commissioned by the district. They suggested waiting for the study before singling out Carrick for an immediate magnet.

A broader issue raised was whether, given the topography of Pittsburgh, magnets in a location such as Carrick would as a practical matter be accessible to students from throughout the city. Connolly was mentioned as a central but expensive location for vocational programs.

It would seem best to address this fundamental issue of location and determine the optimal overall plan- maybe a good, safe, comprehensive high school for each area plus selected magnets/themed schools in central locations or in paired North/South or East/West locations-BEFORE charging ahead with programs on a piecemeal basis.

Questioner said...

Another issue is whether the program at Carrick should be a 6 - 12 themed school- if the 6-12 format is superior and has been chosen for IB, sci tech, arts and U Prep, why not Information Technology as well?