Polski3's View from Here

Quote of some personal revelence: "Is a dream a lie, that don't come true, or is it something worse?"

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Student Performance......

Dennis Fermoyle, over at FROM THE TRENCHES OF PUBLIC EDUCATION has THIS to say.

"5. I believe too much of the blame for students who perform poorly is placed on the public schools themselves, and too little is placed on the parents of those students, the neighborhoods in which those students live, our culture, and especially the students themselves. (Public education critics view this as whining, but it's important, because as long as education reform ignores that and focuses solely on things going on inside the schools, any improvement is going to be limited.)

6. I believe that when education is a priority to the parents, the chances are good that the students will take their own education seriously. On the other hand, if parents don't make their kids' education a priority, the chances are that the kids won't either. (I recognize that there are exceptions to this, and that when parents care and the students don't, sometimes it is at least partially our fault.)"

Bravo Dennis. Well said.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Teacher Day 2008

Teachers, how was your "National Teacher Day?" Over the course of a week, the teachers union spent some dues money on memo pads and some of the cheapest quality ball point pens I have ever seen. We got a wood pencil from the retired teachers. Our school PTO, which is new this year, provided "the staff" with a luncheon featuring salad, cheesy potatoes, green beans, rolls and tri-tip. There were some cupcakes for dessert and sodas and bottled water to drink. Nothing what-so-ever was said about Teacher Day by the district or administration.

How was YOUR Teacher Day ????

Angry Parent UPDATE

Thank you for the words of support and suggestions for dealing with my youngest son's situation. After a discussion with my wife, we decided it would do no good to talk to the principal again, at this point. He won't be there in the future anyhow; he is retiring. This course of action is not usually in my nature, but as my cooler-headed much better half said, "lets just get him through the last few weeks." However, if I encounter the principal, I will say something about it. Hopefully my son will learn a lesson about dealing with persons in authority such as this teacher. And, my son will not be attending that school next year. He will either go to another nearby school offering as much of a GATE program as this school district offers, or maybe to another nearby school which has been designated as a new "Science and Math Magnet School". I have reservations about the still to be determined method of selecting which students will be allowed to attend this new magnet school. If it is based on grades and test scores, he is a shoe-in. If it is based on "ethnicity", his admission will be denied ( he's not Hispanic enough, Korean, African-American or from a war torn, poverty-wracked household ). The new magnet school will also have a new principal, someone whom I have been acquainted for some time and am not too sure of this person's leadership ability or ability to deal in a non-confrontational manner with parents or teachers. But, my son is hoping to go to this new magnet school, so we will apply. Oh, and for the second time in his five years of attending this school, my son was selected as his class "Student of the Year!". I asked him if there was much competition in his class for it. He rolled his eyes ( being a teen is just around the corner---yikes!), and said, in a drawn out voice, "No, not REALLY."

Math Fight

Our oldest son is a seventh grader at the top of his Algebra I class. The local high school math departments have decided that they will offer Geometry to students after successful completion of Algebra I. Then, if they go on, students can take Alg. II then Pre-Calculus. Anyhow, the local high schools don't want my son (or the other soon-to-be eighth grader in Algebra I) to walk across the street from their junior high school to take geometry class. The junior high wants to put the boys at computers with headphones to do a distance learning geometry class. The computers would by in an Algebra I classroom and the teacher would be concentrating on teaching Algebra I. So, the plan that two school district administrations have been able to come up with over the past six months is for these two boys to basically work independently to learn geometry.

My wife ( a credentialed math teacher ) and I are against this idea. We see no reason our son and the other boy can't walk across the street to the high school to take the math class they need. So now we have to fight with the local high school district. Yes, we could "home-school" our son in either algebra II or geometry. But that is not the point. Why is the high school district being so difficult to deal with on this? In the past, but not recently, there have been several eighth graders walking across the street to take high-level math classes they needed that were not offered by the junior high. I know also that there is an "eighth grade" home schooled student currently enrolled at one of the local high schools for Algebra II.

We welcome any ideas of suggestions for us dealing with this.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Parental Anger and Frustration

A sensitive, highly intelligent, creative child is having a rough school year. Not due to any academic demands, which if anything are not in the least challenging, but because the teacher seems to have no control over her class. The class is full of unmotivated, sluggish children. Much does not get taught because this teacher is dealing with all of the misbehavior. The teacher was punishing the whole class because of her apparent inability to deal with the more cronic discipline problems in her classroom. This teacher is not a new teacher, this teacher has 30+ years of experience. This sensitive, highly intelligent, creative child often comes home from school frustrated and in a bad mood. Too many times, the teacher punished the whole class. The teacher and the father talked about this. Teacher claims in all her years, she's never had such an "awful class". Parent offered a few disciplinary suggestions that were not well received. Finally, the father of this sensitive, highly intelligent, creative child spoke to the principal of the school. Most of the "all class" punishments stopped.

Meanwhile, the district where this sensitive, highly intelligent, creative child attends school made some changes with their GATE program. If this sensitive, highly intelligent, creative child was in GATE, he would attend another nearby school that at least offers some GATE instruction. So, the parents requested the child be tested for GATE. As expected, the child passed the test with very high marks. So, for NEXT YEAR, this sensitive, highly intelligent, creative child will be at a different school around hopefully, a better class of students.

Recently, this sensitive, highly intelligent, creative child came home from school in a sour mood. The father asked him to tell him about his day at school. This child replied, "No, because last time I told you about it, you talked to Mr. X (the principal), and he talked to Mrs. F (the teacher), AND SHE YELLED AT ME ABOUT IT.

I am that parent. Any suggestions?

Best of Education/Homeschooling Bloggers

Via a link over at Coach Brown's blog ( see my blog roll ), I found out that my blog has been nominated as a "Best of Education/Homeschooling" Blog. Thank you, whomever it was that nominated me. I am humbled.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

California Cretins and Parasites at Work....Budget woes....


California, the Golden State, has again gone broke. And among those who will greatly suffer will be the children. Education will suffer a big cut in funding. Of course it seems many sacred cows will not fall under the butchers knife; the various bureaucracy rats of the State Department of Education, the parasitic County Offices of Education, District Offices and Sports programs. Yep, those furthest from the children will be safe. Teachers, Librarians, Custodians, Nurses....they will go.

Anyhow, our State Legislative Analyst came up with a plan to free up $2.8 billion dollars for schools. This would be done by reducing from 43 to 4, the number of state categorical mandates. The educational community has shown huge support for this idea. However, the Democrat Assholes who run this state like it is their own feudal barony have said NO. Why? Because they want to raise taxes. They don't want to trim programs anywhere. No, RAISE THE FREEKING TAXES to fund their lavish pandering to special interests, overspending and social programs and whatever else they come up with.

The California State Assembly Education Committee was quick to kill any possibility of enacting these suggestions by our State Legislative Analyst. These elected parasites could not show up to their meeting to vote "no" on such a plan to free up that $2.8 billion dollars for the children of California. So they made sure it would die by either abstaining or being absent. THESE PARASITIC CRETINS ARE:

Gene Mullin (Committee Chairman), D - South San Francisco

Julia Brownley, D- Woodland Hills

Mike Eng, D - Monterey Park

Lori Hancock, D - Berkeley

Betty Karnette, D- Long Beach

Jose Solorio, D - Anaheim

Alan Nakanishi, R - Lodi

When will politicians do what is RIGHT ? Why hasn't CTA started a recall of these politicians?????? ( maybe calling them "politicians" is worse that calling them "parasites" ??? Whadda ya think ? )

So, if you know anyone in Education in California who was pink slipped, who has been told they won't be back next year to teach kids, let them know who is responsible.

I encourage you to try to contact CTA officers.... dsanchez@cta.org or you could write to him at their lavish HQ:

CTA State Headquarters
P.O. Box 921, Burlingame, CA 94011-0921
1705 Murchison Drive, Burlingame, CA 94010
Phone: 650/697-1400

Maybe California needs a new Bear Flag Revolt....one that sends home every elected official, provides for an interim government to oversee vital functions ( Law, fire, education, roads, tax collection, prisons ), holds a new State Constitutional Convention and new elections, with anyone who has held political office in the past 25 years being ineligible to run for any office, even dog catcher. Maybe we'd have a government by the people, of the people, and for the people, NOT the cretins we now have who prostituted themselves to the special interests and who hold their own self-interests to be more important that the people ( and children ) they are supposed to serve.

Rant mode OFF

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Primary Politics....

Over at ScheissWeekly, Mamacita's blog, (at the end of my blogroll) she tells us about the joys of living in Indiana, a current primary election state and getting lots of harassing calls from the Clinton folks. I left this as a comment (feel free to use it to your hearts content ):

"I like messing with those live people who call. I ask, "Can I can get a ride to the polls?" They don't know.....its fun when they ask someone. I've had them tell me yes, someone can give me a ride to the polls. THEN, I ask about lunch. Again, they don't know. Several of them have actually asked some supervisor about lunch for voters.....and tell me "NO." THEN I ask about being paid for my vote. I tell them my ancestors in Chicago were paid $1.00 a vote, beer and food at each polling place they voted. Usually without asking anyone, the floundering campaign worker smuck tells me no, they won't pay for my vote. I ask why the Democrats have abandoned this old political tradition. Then I end the call. Yet, they keep calling. Who says elections ain't fun ?"

Have a Happy Day. Or just shake off today and wait for the new one.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Read it now or Later.....Summer Reading

Recently, I attended a church rummage sale. Lots of stuff available, some of it pretty good stuff. I found a very gently used copy of Frank McCourt's book, "Teacher Man." It was available for mere pennies (all you could stuff in a grocery bag for $1.00). So it went in my bag. Should I read it now, or wait until August, before the new school season begins again ?

What do you read over the summer? Do you read to escape ? Do you read to advance your skills ? Do you NOT read, because you read too much during the school season ?
Do you read a mix of stuff ? Share with us what you plan to read this summer !

Thanks for reading my blog.