Saturday, January 30, 2016

Criteria listed for new superintendent

Anonymous wrote:

Pittsburgh school board is looking for a superintendent with deep education experience, not another Roosevelt! They are also looking for someone committed to diversity and eliminating institutional racism--hallelujah!! "

Friday, January 22, 2016

Keystone exam requirement postponed

Anonymous wrote:

Today's PG 

Keystone exams delayed until 2019
January 20, 2016 2:30 PM
By Mary Niederberger and Janice Crompton / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“School officials are breathing a sigh of relief at the state Legislature’s approval of a two-year delay in requiring students to pass the Keystone exams in order to graduate.”

As PPS searches for an new Superintendent, this article is worth reviewing for one reason and that is to answer the question: Is PPS preparing our students with the basic minimum competency skills to be successful in college or careers? 

The answer is a resounding “NO” for the majority of its 25,000 students! 

PPS district has ranked among PA’s 30 lowest-achieving schools for the last 10 years. Mark Roosevelt became the PPS Superintendent in 2005.

Although Keystone’s and PSSA have been re-configured over the past five year, these tests are the 90% of the same “basic skills” in Reading and Math that Pennsylvania has had in place since 1998.

These are SCHOOL Assessments (PSSA & Keystone) are given ONE time EACH YEAR in Elementary (K-8) and ONE time ONLY in Secondary (8-12) to determine the degree to which schools are preparing students with minimum competency skills.

When students cannot score as “proficient” on these assessments, the SCHOOLS have not met the criteria for which schools exist. A school’s responsibility is to educate its students, all of the students who attend.

PPS has declined in meeting this basic responsibility in the majority of its schools over the last ten years. In fact, more than 7,000 African American students have NOT been prepared by our schools to meet even the minimum “BASIC” skills. PPS is NOT serving/educating in an egregiously devastating manner the needs of its students.

A new Superintendent must have a plan to move PPS students out of lowest 10% in the state of PA. Our children are bright, even brilliant, in every way except for the “academics” that our schools exist to provide!

(POSTPONING teaching and assessing the basic minimum competency skills until 2019 is not a solution!) 

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Questionable workshop at another district

Anonymous wrote:


Looks like one central office alumni is finally being outed as a charlatan. Apparently Dr. Lippert has moved on to become the superintendent of West Allegheny and parents are on the news calling for her resignation following a questionable workshop for students. Here is the link to the story "

Sunday, January 10, 2016

UPrep/ Milliones

Anonymous wrote:

"New Post

University Prep is still ran poorly and nothing has changed. Staff either on medication or quitting their jobs. The school is not safe because of decisions the district and administrators are making. "

Westinghouse/ Wilkinsburg

Anonymous wrote:

"New Post
Westinghouse/Wilkinsburg Partnership: Educational Malpractice or a chance to take charge of two struggling student populations.

Taking charge would be refreshing and the community at large will be looking to the Shirley Biggs and the Johnson Martins to do just that. Hopefully, as mentors and vocal advocates/critics and hands on participants.

Perhaps community activist Fred Logan could continue organizing the forum and panel discussion on an ongoing basis with the the same participants much the same as the Broad/Gates people meet with PPS on a monthly basis. 

Why not? Give them a 'run' for their money.

As Ms. Biggs eloquently puts it, "We're preparing the keepers of our community. That's really the way we need to be thinking about it."

I'm sure Principal LouAnn Zwieryznski would welcome the expertise and relationship building that comes with such dialogue."

Which one of these school districts reminds you of Pittsburgh?

NYT article comparing the progress of two school districts in NJ since 2010, one that is succeeding and one that is not:

"Newark's big mistake was not so much that the school officials empbraced one solution or another but that they placed their faith in the idea of disruptive change and charismatic leaders.  Union City adopted the opposite approach, embracing the idea of gradual change and working within existing structures."

"How to fix the country's failing schools.  And how not to."