Wednesday, July 28, 2010

New teacher orientation

From the PG:


Questioner said...

The article quotes the director of the Pittsburgh Project as saying that when there is an unresponsive parent it is

"most likely because there's a problem in that household. That's when it's critical, he said, that a teacher have a list of community resources -- like a church or community group or friends and neighbors of the student in question -- they can turn to for some guidance."

- But, wouldn't confidentiality requirements prevent a teacher from discussing a particular student with a church or community group or friends and neighbors of the student?

Questioner said...

Tribune article about the same orientation session:

Old Timer said...

As an "old timer", that is such Ivory Tower gobblety-gook that it numbs the mind. "Community resources"????
I've been to homes that had a deep stench of weed filtrating out. I've talked to parents who were high on meth or something else. I've talked with "parents" whose homes were used for...various business transactions.
"Community resources"????
Here's a clue to the Ivory Tower board types who pop in here: with these sad cases, YOU WILL GET NO GUIDANCE! You will have to reach the child yourself in order to make a difference. In some cases, your efforts will pay off and in some cases, the horrible living conditions a child comes from will pull him into a direction you cannot touch.

What outrageous baloney.

Anonymous said...

Maybe they can share best practices and facilitate meaningful dialogue.

Arrrgh ... foundation-speak drives me up the wall!

Anonymous said...

They should drive Mark Roosevelt & all his cronies around to these different parts of the city and talk to community members.
They are extremely out of touch with the communities. They are Afraid of the communities.

The scary part of the article is that the district expects the teachers to take the role of social workers & guidance counselors. They are cutting people in these positions. In the new joke of a contract there is a new position created called a behavior specialist. The education requirment is a GED. Let's save money cut social sevices positions that require masters degrees and hire para proffessionals and put more resposibility on teachers.

Literacy is a major push in the district but on the other hand they have been cutting libraries and library staff.

Mark Roosevelt is a politician, snake oil sales man. He says one thing and does anouther.

The biggest question parents need to ask is why is the Ivory Tower expanding, more and more layers of
management and more and more teacher positions cut. We need more people working directly with children than coporate types working at the Ivory Tower. We have to many chef's in the Kitchen.

Derrick Lopez had that joke of a Coaches meeting. Whats wrong with athletics in the city. He needs to drive around the surounding suburbs and see their facilities. Then look at all the city facilities. There is no comparison. Plus sports programs start in middle school not High School.

Sorry about the Rant, Tirred about being depressed about the PPS.

P.S. You want educational reform, smaller class sizes, I guarantee PSA score would increase. Here is another hipocracy in the PPS. The CAS & AP classes have madatory class size limits. So lets put our most needy & disruptive students in classes of 36. While down the hall there are CAS classes with 12 students in them.

Parents, question every move this district makes. Everything is a Illusion with Roosevelt's PR machine.

Anonymous said...

While waiting for my son to finish his judo class last night, I took an hour-long walk along Brownsville Road in Carrick, past Concord Elementary, Roosevelt and other schools. Forget driving the supt and his cronies around. Take them on a walk in the early evening. Eyes will be opened.

Anonymous said...

I see the political hack Roosevelt is applying the progressive communist approach of 'it takes a village to raise a family.'

Old timer, I agree with your statements except when you give Roosevelt and his cronies a pass on the politics of all this nonsense. Our government today is so top heavy; like corporations,to blame all this on business practices is a laughing joke.

More people today are employeed by either local,county, state, or federal government than ever before. If it is not all politics, then why are the majority of teachers registered as Democrats or Independents. I'll tell you why. They are registered as Democrats out of fear. The fear of not being able to secure employment or not having job security, period.

The fact that teachers fear for their livelihood if they speak out against anything is proof enough that the political regime has a strangle hold.

What is happening here in Pittsburgh is not a local problem. It is a National problem. If we do not take a stand at the local level, then we are doomed as a Nation.

Anonymous said...

To July 29 8:59 Anon

The comments you made about Carrick struck me right in the heart, because I grew up there and went to one of those schools.

To July 29 12:26 Anon

You are right, as teacher & democrat, I was fooled by Obama.
I do have friends that are republican teachers who call me a closet republican. Education as a whole was used as political cannon fodder to get the health care reform passed. The Race for Top money is a way for the federal goverment to control local school districts. Sadly it is the school districts who have no tax base that have too persue this money. What we need is a program like the one instituted under the Eisenhower administration in the late 50's. The National Defense Educational Act. Money was pumped directly into the schools, not to think tanks and more useless layers of management. Race for the Top has way to many strings attached, very similar to Gates money.

The (Elite) are trying to control public education (Broad, Gates, Walton) This is way to much power, for a small group of people to have. The canned curriculum, which is terrible, is a way to control what people know and what they do not know. The contol of information is very 1984ish, George Orwell's.

I have to teach the canned crap, but I still will teach my students to question everything from a liberal arts point of view.


If my grammar and spelling are terrible, sorry I am on Vacation.

Anonymous said...

I voted for Obama knowing that I didn't trust that the people chosen to lead in education would be who I'd want. Having a functioning, rather than bankrupt and torturing, government seemed like a better deal than having the same type of education reforms AND the bankruptcy and torture.

For school reform, the right and the left have aligned and that turns out to be a truly unholy alliance. :-p Unfortunately, I think that many on the lefter half of reform truly believe they are helping the poor and minority kids (in a sickening, condescending sort of way), while those on the right are just happy to see that they've gotten the "left" to go along with destroying public education.

Anonymous said...

Duncan is a mad man. As an active parent I had hopes that Superintendent Roosevelt would buck the system and say we will try to innovate on our own. Then again I always held out hope that someone in goverment would refuse the money to build an underwater tunnel, too.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 3:18,

I cannot begin to unravel your twisted thinking.

Anonymous said...

anonymous 8:11

Why, that's too bad! It didn't seem hard to me.

Current education reform, same as old education reform = bad.

Rest of administration priorities (health care, financial reform, etc.) different from last administration priorities = good.

Anonymous said...

As an active parent I had hopes that Superintendent Roosevelt would buck the system and say we will try to innovate on our own.

You don't get out of Broad and then "buck the system." Roosevelt IS the system, all the Broad superintendents are the system, as are the Gates recipients. He's not going to bite the hand that's feeding him -- that's always been clear.

Questioner said...

That's probably part of the idea behind the Broad approach- it doesn't matter if your superintendent leaves for a different position because he or she can just be replaced with other Broad superintendent who will take the same approach.

Anonymous said...

This link has a wealth of information, and so many hyperlinks that are very informative.

Once you start reading and clicking you begin to realize we are far from alone. I do find it strange that Pittsburgh is not viewed as a major player in this, we get a few mentions.

Pittsburgh is a major player, if not the most important one. I think addressing this nationwide and participating on a national level might be helpful.

Just look at The Broad Foundation website. Mr. Roosevelt is the poster boy.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Anon 3;45 for the websites. You're absolutely right, they provide a wealth of information; very scary information. Education has been taken over by the radical progressive elites.

And, like I said Anon 10:45, twisted thinking. I would also like to add uninformed, limited thinking.

Anonymous said...

Education has been taken over by the radical progressive elites.

Snort! Do you consider the Walton family (Walmart) and Broad or even Gates to be radical progressive elites? Elites, I'll give you that.

I can't really imagine ANY true radical progressives encouraging all standardized test based teaching (I was going to write "learning" but the more you teach to the test, often the less learning you achieve). Any system based on once a year tests as the be all and end all of education will never be either radical or progressive.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:27,

Check out the staff and board members of the Broad Foundation for yourself. Their background experiences come from groups like Americorp, Teach For America, and other well known progressive groups.

Sometimes the truth is difficult to see when we have blinders on.

Anonymous said...

How is current education reform, a la Broad, Gates, Walton different than the original conservative agenda of NCLB?

That's the same point that's been made here -- there is currently little difference between the actual results of the left and right in education reform. The left may be throwing more money at it, but the right is delighted to see that the left is doing their original work.

Who is profiting from all of this? Not the students or the public schools. The testing companies, the test prep companies, the companies that sell test prep and "standards aligned" computer software (most of which look like they were made at the same time as Atari was all the rage)companies. The companies running charters. The companies selling "new and improved" curricula... The companies selling hardware to schools. That's where the money is going.

So, again, what we're seeing is an unholy alliance between rather addled lefties who are convinced they are riding in and saving the poor little children and the greedy righties who want the money that is flowing out of public education and into private companies. When the public education system has been dismantled...well, that's been a right wing goal for at least 30 years.

Anonymous said...

When the emphasis shifts to "show me results"___all children educated to their potential and beyond__ instead of "show me the money"___ the debate will be finished!

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:09,

I agree that the NCLB mandate is destroying education. However, once again you have your facts wrong. The NCLB policy was conceived during the Clinton administration by the Secretary of Education hand picked by Clinton himself. During the Bush's administration, it was enacted within the first 100 days of his first term. Unfortunately, Bush kept Clinton's Secretary of Education.

Apparently Anon, you are a thin skinned liberal who wants to shift the blame with half truths. I only put my 2 cents in when the truth is distorted. I research the topics before I speak.

Anonymous said...

This floored me.

I want to get involved, I want everyone to wake up, but I don't know how. Not enough people read this blog, and so many parents/communities have given up they don't get involved.

Kathy Fine said...

These kinds of posts do nothing to further the discussion regarding out public schools. First of all, Clinton was far from a liberal in his years in the white house. And if the plan was bad under Clinton, then Bush should have amended it and he did not. So there is plenty of blame to go around.

We can all agree that a world class public education will benefit all; students, parents, teachers and our community. So let's concentrate on sharing information and ideas and rallying around our children.

I know that what we have witnessed over the last 5 years has been frustrating, but bitterness and name calling will only further divide us and make us less able to present a thoughtful and reasonable front.

bystander said...

"Merit pay schemes have long been criticized by teachers' unions and education advocates for driving teachers to narrow the curriculum to cover only what is assessed on tests--and for pitting teachers against each other for a limited pool of money, thus breaking down teacher collaboration and creating disincentives for educators to share effective teaching techniques."

The passage from the article cited matches one of the first arguments made by a parent during a presentation by Dr. Lippert on EET and RISE for the Excellence for All Parent Steering Committee meeting. This was a long time ago when the ideas were only in the discussion phase in PPS.

Anonymous said...

Kathy, I agree that bickering doesn't help but you need to understand that government is the problem. A child's education is ultimately the responsiblity of the parent,...not the government. Until we get politics out of education, then you parents will not make any headway.

Anon 2:54 and others who want to get involved, here is my suggestion. Call your state rep's and fed rep's and demand that the Department of Education to be abolished. You don't want your tax money going to these political hacks, whether they are left, right, or amberdexterist (sp?)!

Mark Rauterkus said...

To get politics out of education is like getting voting out of democracy. Or, how about politics out of government.

Politics is part of life in the USA. Not so much in China.

My call is NOT to get politics out of our life -- as that is impossible. Rather, politics is a tool, a process, a way, a function of what occurs. Rather, we need BETTER politics, more insightful levers of power, more efficient and much wider networks of influence.

Anonymous said...

Yes, politics is in everyday life. However, I am talking about the politics of the federal government. It is not the fed's duty, or should not be.