Cancelling the September 4th open forum at Salem

Mostly due to lack of planning, but also because we have some better ideas and really want to get some key players involved. Both Chuck Jackson and I have a strong desire to build on the success of Shadow Wood. I will be calling Carla Jones (“Hi, Carla!”) and pursue a couple different avenues.

Review of May 15th Open Forum

As stated previously about the May 15th Open Forum we held, the attendance was a bit sparse but the discussion was good. Chuck Jackson and I were joined by Andrew Wilk, Summer Curry, Chris Hamb, Karen Roese and Shandra Summerville.

After giving a brief intro and what we are doing and why, we gave Sir Ken Robinson the floor via a 12-minutes RSA video: http://sirkenrobinson.com/skr/rsa-animate-changing-education-paradigms. With a bit of humor, Robinson tells the story of how the current educational model is good for some, not for others; how it can be really boring and has the tendency to squash any creative tendancies in a budding child. He associates “divergent thinking” as a measure of creativity, and asserts that the factory-model, assembly line style is counter-productive in this sense. “We need to wake them up!”

We started our dialog about the limitations placed upon reading. For instance, the timestamp method (as a kindergartner, one is stamped with an implicit date of “delivery” or graduation, ‘Class of ….’) makes it rather difficult for exception readers to advanced beyond their grade level. There is a perception (which I have heard from others as well) that parents of such students opt to patronize schools outside the public school district for this reason.

Likewise, Read the rest of this entry »

Track My Steps (Wake County): Education Inequality Forum

From the news-observer again:

http://blogs.newsobserver.com/wakeed/public-forum-tonight-on-education-inequality-in-eastern-wake-county-schools

Track My Steps is hosting a public forum tonight on the state of education in Eastern Wake County.

Forum organizers say there is a “crisis in public education in eastern Wake County and that they want to “break the silence on education inequality.” The forum will focus on the challenges faced by Eastern Wake students and parents in the areas of early education, student discipline, student/parent rights and resources, course selection/availability and student achievement.

“Eastern Wake residents are calling for education reform in their part of Wake County to create a better Wake County,” according to the press release. “Participants will introduce a plan of action to change the perception of education in Eastern Wake.”

When I read the Track My Steps information, it reminded me a lot of what we are trying to do. I am following up with them to learn more. I also very much wonder about the details of the reform – they seem to have some important folks on board.

Open Forum is tomorrow (7:pm, Urbana Free Library, Lewis Auditorium)

Chambanamoms just put up a note about our forum:

http://www.chambanamoms.com/2012/05/14/champaign-unit-4-open-forums-on-education/

I have committments from several community members including Chris Hamb (of Chrisp Media) and Carolyn Savage (wife of the late Reverend Lundy Savage). I also heard that an announcement was made at Canaan Baptist Church encouraging folks to attend.

I will have lots of pens and notepads so attendees can quickly jot down thoughts, questions and comments that we can sticky to the wall or dry-erase board. The idea being that we will organize these ideas along several themes, and then mesh them in with the ideas from the previous open forum. If attendees express a desire that we take certain topics to the School Board (either Unit 4 or Unit 116), we will do so. In either case, all ideas and topics will be posted here so folks can see how their voice was heard. And they are invited to continue giving us feedback. 🙂

Please join us, and come prepared to share your ideas.

Plan for Houlihans tomorrow

I am thinking that tomorrow (Wednesday, May 9th) at Houlihans, the main purpose will be to drive around and deliver flyers for the next Community Forum on Education. I have contacted a few churches already, but only one has gotten back to me with a green light to post a flyer on a bulletin board. I have also contacted quite a few individuals and asked them to help me reach their own circles of influence.

 

So my plan of attack for tomorrow is to meet up at 11:30, wait until 11:40 and then take off; either deliver flyers or talk to group representatives.

 

If you want to join us, please let me know so I can print out flyers for you. Or if you just want to hang with us, that is cool also. 🙂

May 15th Open Forum on Education – 7:pm Urbana Free Library

We are moving forward with our second Open Forum on Education. I am imploring all readers to tell their friends so we can reach a wider audience. 🙂 We will also be printing flyers and passing them out to representatives from local churches. We kinda goofed with the scheduling as it overlaps the last PTA meeting of the year – my apologies.

 

Here is the flyer (black and white):

https://thecitizen4blog.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/may-15-forum-single-page.pdf

 

If you have other ideas, please let me know.

The plan for Houlihans today

Aside from planning our future open forums, we are going to start looking at talking points we can consistently put in front of the Board at board meetings and make a part of the public record. I am going to fold in things we have gathered from our first open forum (ie, Discipline, Expectations, money/budget, etc) and subsequent forums.

 

I started to look at the budget and quickly got overwhelmed. Just looking through the check register raises a lot of eyebrows, but even more questions. I simply do not have the context to evaluate all this information. I am thinking a dedicated, money-wise and well-versed group of folks would be better suited. Ideas? What can the average joe hope to accomplish by looking over the budget and the many financial reports generated by Mr. Logas and his assistants? Perhaps that is the issue right there. 🙂

 

If you have a bee in your bonnet or a burning question, please bring them to Houlihans today. If you are a shadow reader of this blog and have always wanted to come to a Houlihans Wednesday, maybe today is the lucky day. 🙂