Monday, October 6, 2014

Grant to investigate school safety and suspensions

On another post Anonymous wrote:

"New Post Please
As if we don't have enough already. Now the government is involved. 3 Million to look into school safety, suspensions... This in todays Post Gazette.

http://www.post-gazette.com/news/education/2014/10/06/Pittsburgh-Public-Schools-to-announce-3-million-research-grant/stories/201410060172

36 comments:

Anonymous said...

More consultants. More outside "experts" who have all the answers.

This will gum up the works even more. But it will make a nice press release, and a nice photo op. So it's all good.

Anonymous said...

Sounds good! All of the grants, proposals, consultants, etc. sound good . . .

The problem becomes WHO is hired to do this? WHO is put in place to implement?

Typically, these are bright young people (usually white) who have taken leadership training and so are assumed to know what experienced practitioners should do differently.

The assumptions are that the young people, the students are the problem and need to be manipulated, conditioned, rewarded and programmed into a system that does not meet their needs emotionally, intellectually, academically or culturally.

Consultants and programs come and go. As soon as the money is gone, the consultants and programs are gone leaving the students in worse places than previously. Just look at the data!

Money, money, and more money for adults who are looking for work but have no defined skills.

There never seems to be any measurable benefit for students who are so 'bottom line' that they are off the chart.

Anonymous said...

The Trib has a better quote that helps the reader see where this is headed:

The grant will help prevent a “revolving door of punishment” for local kids, Lane said, through professional development and community engagement.

“Yes, we have a problem, just like everywhere else,” Lane said. “Adults have just as many choices on how to de-escalate brewing problems as children do in deciding how to react when they're upset.”

Clearly this is to help deal with all the cultural insensitivity that is the root cause of our district's problems. If only we could have more PD on "whiteness" and learn to react better when students are throwing chairs, everything will work itself.

YES! That's what we need! More consultants and more young professionals with no clue how to handle a classroom. Thank goodness for government handouts! Finally we'll get the answers we've been looking for.

Anonymous said...

One of the biggest problems I see is the money. 3 Million from the government today for research will become an unfunded or underfunded mandate tomorrow. Look what happened with the 50 million dollar "gift" from Bill and Melinda Gates. What a mess that has caused. Throw in an agenda supported by Eli Broad and you have all the necessary elements of another disaster. The local school climate will become so bad that even the troubled kids will want out. This can be the propellant needed to advance the need for charter schools.
The article said 15 school districts were given the money. I wonder who they were. Are they in the same trouble as PPS? Did they ever receive Gates money? Are they loaded up with Broad grads? Did those districts ever have a program similar to our PELA?

Anonymous said...

I have never seen heroin, in or out of a bag. I am no judge of quantity and do not know the law.

http://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2014/10/06/Teen-facing-charges-after-allegedly-bringing-heroin-to-Homewood-school/stories/201410060215

how much heroin does a kid have to bring to school to avoid being sent home. yes, apparently he will be charged at a later date, but isn't there a chain of evidence question that has to be considered since the confiscation occurred at school?

Anonymous said...

I am sure the school police will handle this one just fine, if they were called. If school security snatched the heroine, school administrators will do their best to cover it up. If it is a small amount, in-school suspension will be the action taken.
This whole idea of school safety is a joke. If this actor had drugs, he should go to jail. If the race of the fella has any influence on the whole thing, shame on them. It is time PPS calls it like it is. If it looks like a disproportionate number of one race is suspended over another, too bad. If it hurts, it might be the truth!

Anonymous said...

4:22,

You have more confidence in the PPS school police than I do. It has been my experience that they are just as good at covering things up as anyone else.

That doesn't mean it's their decision to do so. The security guards are told to cover things up by the building principals. The school police are told to cover things up by the central administrators.

The public does not know of even half the crimes that are being committed in the schools.

Here's just one example. A number of years ago, a student was found with a gun during a routine morning search. But the student was a star athlete. And no one was hurt. So the gun disappears. And the report disappears.

Anonymous said...

10:29

I have been cross referencing the schools who received the grant with schools that receive Gates money, there is a connection. I have not made it all the way through but so far Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Central Falls are all grant recipients and also Gates schools. In fact, Cincinnati received some kind of award from Gates for their charter school compact. I'll post the rest as I check them.

Anonymous said...

Wisconsin public too, they got the grant too, and apparently their district was also decimated by Gates money. Hmmm...a coincidence?

Anonymous said...

Puget sound, Chicago, Miami dade, pharr san juan alamo school district, & palm beach county are some of the other 15 schools that got this safety grant that have also taken Gates money or use teacher evaluations funded by Gates money.
Too many to be coincidental.

Anonymous said...

5:13
I just want to reinforce your statement that the public doesn't know half of the crimes committed in the schools. I am at that school where the star athlete had a gun found during the morning search and I want to confirm that YES it did happen. Scary.

Anonymous said...

October 7, 2014 at 4:22 PM and October 7, 2014 at 5:13 PM. You do not have a clue what Security nor the Police do! If they covered it up why would it be in the paper, on the news and on this sight? No one covers up anything! If anyone covers up anything it is Central no one else! The School Security Officer put them selves in danger every single day making no where what they should and you bad talk them! Are you both involved in the schools? DO you volunteer? All these parents complaining and where I work we do not have one parent on the PTO nor volunteer! SO where are all the caring parents? What is there to hide? The kids receive a terrible education because of the kids out of control in the classes, the kids have autism, depression, mental issues, behavior issues, very needy, molested, raped, no parents, feel unloved, drug problems, drug dealing and more! With all these problems that these kids have what would you like us to do? Please know what you are talking about before you comment rudely! Do you go to work daily and have kids tell you to shut the f@@@ up, hit you, say f@@@@ yourself, hit teachers, run from Security, break things, out of control and more? Why do these staff members have to deal with all of these issues that came from home or their environment? Why in the world are you blaming the schools? AT these schools the kids want help and cry out for it! We can only do so much it starts at home! Do you have any clue that tons of these kids are in foster care, placement, outreach programs and so on! Some kids are raised to steal, lie, stay on welfare, watch parents use drugs, have access to drugs, respect no one. Heroin is sneaked in the schools daily sorry we can not search their under wear! Suburb schools have ten times more drugs in the school then the poverty kids! If you want to make a change get in these schools and do something about it! When Security took this job with the small pay they receive they had no idea that they would be the Officer, therapist, counselor, protector for staff, irate out of control parents, people coming to the school to beat them up for touching their kid that was out of control, paper work, and more being treated like no bodies! Of course School Police was called to this incident, that was a dumb comment! Come join us and come to a out of control school. Break up several fights at one time being punched in your head and face, come join us!

Questioner said...

Very interesting 6:47 - 7:14. So even though the grant is listed as being from the research arm of the Department of Justice, the majority of grant recipients are Gates districts. Could Gates be funding this "Department of Justice" initiative so that to make the Gates influence less apparent?

Questioner said...

There is a connection; see http://acestoohigh.com/2013/08/20/spokaneschools/

"As director of the Washington State University Area Health Education Center (AHEC), Blodgett leads an organization that is as understated as he is. In less than six years, they’ve gone from holding a few workshops for the community of Spokane, to attracting interest and support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA — the largest federal agency you never heard of) to help schools throughout Washington become trauma-informed."

5:13 said...

Oct. 7 at 8:33,

I'm the poster at 5:13.

I'm a PPS teacher. And I'm afraid that you misunderstood my remarks.

I have great respect for the building security guards. In my long career, I have needed building security many times. And they have never let me down. Never once!

The building security guards are underpaid. And they are not appreciated. Without them, our schools simply could not function. If it were up to me, I'd double their pay.

But I stand by my previous post. Security and police are both pressured to cover up crimes. I could provide twenty examples just in my own school.

But I do not blame security. I blame the cowardly administrators.

Anonymous said...

A young man lost his life today on his way to school.

Questioner said...

PG is reporting the shooting took place in the Hill District. Was this the same student who survived multiple gunshots a couple weeks ago?

Questioner said...

http://triblive.com/news/allegheny/6929688-74/shot-district-fatally#axzz3FYklYfqv

Can the school safety funds be spent on the safety of students walking to school?

Anonymous said...

http://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2014/10/08/Man-fatally-shot-in-Hill-District-Pittsburgh/stories/201410080153

The schools can be places where resolutions and preventions to such tragedies can be generated. School administrators and staff must see that as the goal. It can only happen with the right people in place. It cannot happen with folks who do not want to be there and where the turnover further exacerbates tumultuous situation rather than creating safe learning and growing opportunities.

God BLESS the children! And a 17 year old is still and growing, developing and maturing young person.

Questioner said...

No one is going to want to be where gunshots are flying. Most people have family members who rely on them.

Anonymous said...

Morgan Street is not near the school. But, that is not the point. Adults in schools have unique opportunities to change the direction of the lives of young people. This can only happen where adults are strong, caring, experienced, committed professionals who see their role as educators to be the preparation of youth for successful futures. When that is the character of the educators, it happens. Lives change, the young begin to see themselves as having possibilities for productivity and success (in this world) rather than death in the streets.
There are those adults who knowingly and voluntarily take on these challenges and change lives! Just not enough of them, sadly.

Anonymous said...

How is it working with the School Police in the buildings? Is it safer? What do they do in the building?

Questioner said...

Word is that the PG breaking news story originally noted that this is the same student who was shot at near U Prep on September 19, but then this information was removed.

Questioner said...

Trib reports it is the same student:

http://triblive.com/news/allegheny/6929688-74/shot-eric-district#axzz3FYklYfqv

Did student services do anything to address this issue? Yes it took place outside of school (although the second shooting could easily have happened near school like the first); and no doubt the learning environment is suffering- permanently in the case of the victim.

Anonymous said...

It's completely inappropriate to place the death of a child on the backs of teachers. We can affect an environment, we can build relationships, but WE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR KEEPING THEM ALIVE!

This madness has to stop.

Questioner said...

It was completely foreseeable that another attempt would be made on this student's life and that the student was in danger. Did any of the adults in the building consider notifying CYS?

Questioner said...

In addition, the safety of staff and other students was threatened because this second shooting could easily have taken place near the school like the first one.

Questioner said...

Not sure if reported, but a bomb threat at Brashear today; either the school safety or the learning environment money should be put to use to determine the best way to handle these threats

Anonymous said...

October 8, 2014 at 12:18 PM I will tell you this(the Security handle everything in these schools and then the police show up). Not one person interviewed Security to see if putting a police officer in the building was needed or would work. I will tell you this. The police do not attend calls in the school and do not handle issues(the security still handle everything) These schools are in need for a lot more security! For what they do they are so under paid and get no respect! When doing anything that has to do with safety an intelligent professional person would ask security what needs to change and what is needed. Just as always the blue collar worker has the answers but the white collar worker keeps making mistakes. They took man power out of these schools for a police officer that does not answer calls and does not care to have a re pore with the kids! WAY TO GO! GOOD JOB!

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:29 is correct. The teachers cannot keep kids alive out in the community. And while we are on the subject-- they cant "make them come to school"-- yes they must call home-- but there is no rule -- like for inoculations- that a home number exist-- or that students give their number to the school. The little ones are trained to NEVER give that number--How is that the teacher's fault? This situation is tragic yes.
But this is NOT a teacher's responsibility.

Anonymous said...

The police were aware that this boy was targeted and his family was also aware and I would assume that his family made the decision to send him to the same school in the same neighborhood. The student was obviously in real danger.
This did not happen at the school or near the school. As a society, we all have let children down by glorifying guns and violence.

Questioner said...

The September 19 shooting occurred very near to the school and today's shooting could easily have occurred in the same place. We don't know whether the family requested a transfer; others have reported trouble obtaining security transfers. And we don't know if other students at the school are suspects, or if there were school related issues; PPS has stated that it will have no comment.

Anonymous said...

These police officers need to not be in these schools unless they are going to go to the calls and help the security! I think that their should be several security officers in charge that can handle all situations. Then hire the city police in case we need them. They have so much more experience than the school police and the kids laugh at school police. A raise OMG they have not had a raise in years! You think the word security officer is demeaning and why should they deserve more pay? These security officers adore your children and are out for their best interest. Security has so many faces with the job and it can be extremely stressful! The next safety meeting needs a security guard to share their thoughts. Please non of our bosses we will get abused and harassed if they know something came from us. Its all wrong and we need two guards per floor and it would help to have a set of handcuffs, this way he cant harm anyone. Security have nothing but their hands and they need handcuffs! If a group of kids are out of control kicking in the face, we could use mase but they do not give it to us. If a man came in the building to shot or steal a child mase can stop them. But we have nothing to protect others. SO many security officers are planning on leaving because the stress and the money. the police make $47,000 and security make $34,000 a year and layed off in June , July and August with famalies!They do have one security officer that works 12 months a year who is hurt and can not break up fights anymore. This district does not put people first and learn from the people that do the job! The people in charge do not have a clue what should be done. They did have to give the police something to do but in the schools they are hiding not coming to calls, complains about the kids, and are miserable. So now the high school is down a valuable security guard that should had never been moved! We need security and the Pittsburgh Police! The kids fear the Pittsburgh police and laugh right in school polices face.

Anonymous said...

I'm a PPS teacher. Every last thing the poster said at 10:08 is true.

The building security guards do a great job with what little they have.

The school police contribute next to nothing to safety because they are never in the buildings. They typically show up only after a fight is over, and the building guards have already restored order.

As the poster at 10:08 suggested, it might be better to replace school police officers with Pittsburgh police officers. I suppose that could be worked out. I know that other districts in the country contract to use local police or sheriff's deputies.

But central administration would never go for that. They can hide school police reports. They couldn't hide city police reports.

Anonymous said...

why wont they hire more police and security instead of investigating them.Brown and novicki wont and will not protect the police and security jobs unless they are family.They will rite you up just for sneezing.We need more security and police because things are out of control and it starts with them two.The police and security don't want to work for Brown and i can't wait for his release when they hire a new chief because he does not have the 4 year degree required for the chiefs job and if he gets it then all police and security should protest.Teachers need a degree for there jobs.

Anonymous said...

Well said 10:08 1 security guard per 500 students does not make sense.They will not hire more security because the money that they had went to hire an assistant chief for what purpose i don't know and does he have the credentials to be chief .