Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Editorial about Westinghouse

On another post Anonymous wrote:

Please check out today’s PG Editorial Page:
Beyond sugar and spice: Real school reform doesn’t rest on gender stereotypes by Susan Frietsche and Sara Rose.
From the eid

"Westinghouse needs to change, and innovation and improvement can't stop just because this one aspect of the reform program at Westinghouse has failed the test.

The children have had enough false promises. Fortunately, the focus can now return to real reform ---"

Concerning the actions of PPS, not only does the whole scenario at Westinghouse get curiouser and curiouser, but more and more disingenuous, egregious, and unconscionable as it pertains to the education of Westinghouse students.

Perhaps WAA can find out what the PPS agenda really is at Westinghouse. What are the plans? Is PPS turning it over to the Homewood Children's Village?

Dear Heaven, help us find a viable solution for these students, poste haste!!! (PPS and HCV do not have the where-with-all to provide a solution.)


Anonymous said...

That was my first thought when Lopez got his new position.

Anonymous said...

A few weeks ago Linda Lane spoke about being disturbed about some of the content in the"single gender training". It is stunning that she did not know about the foundational model for the program until recently. Obviously, she did not know about it. Yet, she let the program go forward.
And by the way, what happened to the Social Justice curriculum?? Shame on you Linda Lane!

Anonymous said...

The training she was talking about was last summer -- how is it that she didn't stop it right then or at least question it?

Truth is that anyone with an internet connection can quickly tell that the main proponents of single gender education as a type of reform or remediation have NO research basis for that.

Are there good single gendered programs around? Sure! But look at the other components that go with it. Usually go hand in hand with small class sizes, personalized attention, and...tuition fees. Not something thrown together over the summer after no evidence of it doing any good for the two (three?) years it had been tried before that at Westinghouse.

Anonymous said...

Linda Lane depends on her contingent of Assistant Superintendents, Chiefs of This or That, and Directors.

Sad to say, however, these people were not chosen for competence, experience or expertise necessary for the positions (roles and responsibilities) that they currently hold. Based on their answers to questions, comments, power points, and DECISIONS, they definitely DO NOT HAVE the SKILLS, REQUIREMENTS, or BACKGROUND needed to create or facilitate reform in our school system.

Anonymous said...

Additionally, the training was not required and many teachers did not attend. Also, some of the 80% of NEW teachers were not yet assigned. It may not be of consequence, however, since even according to Dr. Lane the training was flawed.

Clearly, Central Office, was again ill-equipped to make the necessary plans, decisions, and PD or training that are critical to opening a new school. This is not work that they had ever done before and given that we have all of these inexperienced PELAs and Directors, they made good scapegoats.

So, where are we going from here? Does ANYONE KNOW??

Questioner said...

Yes and then the next year scores went back down to pretty much where they were before the PSSA score.

But Shealey can't have it both ways- either kids were suffering under Crenshaw despite the year of AYP (in which case confidence in her return may not be warranted), OR things were looking up during those years (in which case the ACLU would have been justified, if there were any basis for a civil liberties legal action, in not acting at that point).

Old Timer said...


The PPS are led by individuals who clearly have no clue about education. They know how to hide and look busy. They know how to google information about what other urban districts are doing.They know how to write grant proposals. They know how to intimidate teachers.

They know nothing about children.

They care nothing about parents and families.

They manipulate public discourse thanks to media inadequacy.

I'm a firm believer in one having to answer for his misdeeds and this is no different. It actually heartens me to think that these people will have to answer for their selfishness one day, selfishness that costs children an education and serves to keep them where they are in life.

I'm ashamed to be a PPS teacher in wake of what has happened at Westinghouse. We are all Westinghouse and I know of no teacher whose heart does not hurt for the families and kids who were so excited to go to a new school, full of new hope.

I know of no teacher who does not empathize with the plight of teachers who are being shown the door or subject to incredible stress thanks to incompetent administrators.

Any teacher will acknowledge that we all must feel for what has happened to the kids, families and teachers at Westinghouse.

I doubt that anyone in central administration, other than paying more lip service.

Shame of you, Dr.Lane. And shame on your lieutenants, who ALL should have been at that school to make sure it opened in solid fashion or at least was quickly fixed.

You should all be ashamed of yourselves.

How do you sleep?

Questioner said...

Imagine what most board members would have said if the Westinghouse episode had been on Dr. Thompson's watch.

Anonymous said...

I just watched Nov legislative meeting. I thought fot a few fleeting moments Sumpter grew a spine, but then he bailed.

It is a joke watching that Motley crew.

Anonymous said...

Sumpter is a rubber stamp for the status quo. He has never questioned beyond anything that he has been told by the Roosvelt/Lane gang.

South Hills Stan said...

Don't forget that Sumpter went to the Broad Academy for Board members.

He no longer represents us.

A Word from Bellefield said...

Q, Dr. Thompson had his faults, but he would never have tolerated the Westinghouse opening without schedules.

I guarantee you that a capable administrator - I'm guessing Dr. King - would have been dispatched to restore the learning environment.

On top of that, Dr. T would have been in the hallways of Westinghouse PERSONALLY and no, not to witchhunt teachers.

Dr. T would have had the best old school principals gather together to build a master schedule and student schedules by hand if they had to.

The Westinghouse situation was reason enough to fire Linda Lane.

Anonymous said...

As a professional at Westinghouse during Dr. Thompson's term as Superintendent, he was immediately on the scene, visible and in charge, making certain that ANY problem was solved ASAP.

It is inconceivable that the current problems at Westinghouse were not solved from Central Office in a week's time or less.

Unfortunately, Central Office, has NO ONE with the skills necessary to solve problems in our schools.

Truly, it takes educators with depth of experience and years of success in administration at this level.

(At least, one such educator who can mentor the young and unexperienced, must be on site. It was a little late when Rhonda Taliaferro was sent in to handle the problems. There is no excuse for this to have occurred---NONE.)

Anonymous said...

5:56 - The principals that were let go were scapegoats. The ultimate responsibility for the debacle at Westinghouse lies with Dr. Lane and Dr. Otuwa, who is the Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Schools. Neither of these two ladies have experience, let alone expertise at the Secondary level. Thus, we are likely yet to see more problems that they are not capable of solving.

Perhaps, CO can contract more consultants to administer our schools. Consultants appear to be the only venue for spending money; it never gets to educating live kids in schools.

Anonymous said...

To ALL: My apologies for resorting to sarcasm. Lest someone take it seriously, consultants are NOT the answer!

However, we MUST get to choosing the people with the experience, the knowledge, the commitment, and true caring and concern for ALL of our students.

Anonymous said...

The ultimate responsibility for the debaucle at Westinghouse falls on Llinda Lane. She needs to resign and get someone in there who understands high schools.