Thursday, July 28, 2011

Just say NO

I'm not the only one Attorney Regina Tate advises her client--the Amherst Schools--to deny access to public documents.

Back in March parents with a vested interest in Special Education requested the credentials and certifications of the "interim" (going on two years now) Director of Special Education JoAnn Smith, a $99,612 salaried public employee very much in the "public eye".

Under advice of Nancy Reagan--I mean-- Attorney Regina Tate, the Amherst schools refused to comply by invoking "exception C", the privacy exemption.The petitioner appealed to the Public Records Division and received a telling response earlier this month from staff attorney Lori Sullivan:

I have received your inquiry on the status of your public records appeal. A review of the matter reveals that the Amherst Pelham School District (School District) is withholding teacher and staff credentials/certifications. Our office will have to send an administrative order to the School District to try to get them to comply with the request. Once it is drafted and reviewed by the Assistant Director, it will be mailed to both the School District and to you.

According to easily accessed public records information available online: "Specifically, any relevant degrees and certifications listed on an employee’s resume may be subject to disclosure upon request. Public employees have a diminished expectation of privacy in matters relating to their public employment and the public has a legitimate interest in knowing whether public employees possess the qualifications necessary to perform their jobs."

Seems pretty simply to me. But then, I'm not an expensive Big City lawyer.


Anonymous said...

Why so much cloak and dagger drama on these matters? Why are WE, the tax payers (and yes, I own a house!) paying for bad advice? And why is Ms. Tate recommending the withholding of public information? This doesn't make any sense. Who hired her? She is costing school system money that should be going TO the schools, not into an attorney's pocket.

Anonymous said...

Only in this little island called Amherst can someone be hired, paid by the public, and basicly have the attitude of "just pay me and don't question my capabilities". I think everyone that denies this type of information should be either voted out or let go. It is obvious that they either have something to hide, or are unqualified. Think about it folks is there anything on your resume that is so confidetial it has to be locked in a vault. That is what resume's are for to show the world what you are qualified to do, or in this case what you could potentialy not be qualified to do!

Anonymous said...

Why is JoAnn Smith paid over $15k MORE than the Director of the Jones Library system, with two branches and about 40 staff?

Anonymous said...

why would you want to keep this information from the public? why is Tate giving such bad advice and why is anyone paying for it?

Anonymous said...

Thank you Larry for posting this. It is unbelievable that the School Administration would deny these simple requests for information. These are OUR schools, not the administrators' schools. We pay the taxes, it is our children who are in the schools. We have a right to know who is with our children all day. Shame on Ms. Geryk and Ms. Tate for illegally hiding information we are entitled to. Time for a new lawyer. We can do better.

Roach Patrol said...

"So it’s okay for young girls to publicly scream the actual C-word" but tax-payers can't examine the "credentials and certifications of $99,612 salaried public employees very much in the public eye"???

Now ~THAT~ is friggan priceless.

Can you say, what a dump?

I knew you could.

Anonymous said...

I think someone should go before the selectboard and bring up this issue. Perhaps the selectboard could instruct the school to comply with routine requests so we don't have to have taxpayers paying for attorney's fees to oppose obviously legal requests.

Anonymous said...

I feel sorry for this person who made the FOI request and then had to resort to a higher power. They can now expect to a target of the administration (or some therein). This person deserves a medal of bravery. Questioning the administration is a BIG no-no and can get one into a lot of trouble, hope they don't have kids in the system...

Anonymous said...

If we all copied this blog and sent it to Ms. Geryk, Mr. Rhodes, Mr. Rivkin, Mr. Hood, Dr. Spence, and Ms. Appy is it possible that they would do something ?

At least Rhodes and Hood since they are the true enablers in this district. After all, it was their votes that installed Ms. Geryk in a position clearly well above her capability.

Kip Fonsh 45 Long Hill Road
Leverett 01054 548-9053

Debbie Gould 33 South Valley Road
Pelham 01002 253-9162

Rick Hood Chair 28 Farmington Road
Amherst 01002 320-3611

Kristen Luschen 10 Sojourner Way
Shutesbury 01072 256-3303

Irv Rhodes 173 Pondview Drive
Amherst 01002 253-7147

Steve Rivkin 95 Larkspur Drive
Amherst 01002 unlisted

Katherine Appy 60 Red Gate Lane
Amherst 01002 253-9431

Rob Spence 16 Bayberry Lane
Amherst 01002 256-4781

Kathy Weilerstein 43 Boyden Road
Pelham 01002 253-3531

Anonymous said...

You expect these folks to do something?

Don't make me laugh.

The infidels have been thrown out of the House of Geryk and all is sweetness and light. (see name-calling in comments from the status quo fans in prior Larry post).

Anonymous said...

One word of advice if you have even a groan of dissent about anything going on in our public schools...........

Be a minority.

It's the only way to get a respectful hearing in this town on anything about public education.

Anonymous said...

Check out Jeff Smink's column in the New York Times, "This Is Your Brain On Summer" regarding something called "summer learning loss" observed in America's schoolchildren.

Then apply that phenomenon to our current trimester system where students take even longer periods away from language and math study.

Oh, I'm sorry, that's another "Problem-Which-Must-Not-Be-Named" in our current lock-step political climate on schools.

Anonymous said...

I do not agree with withholding the information. However, did you notice the word "may"? That may be their loophole. Just sayin'.

Anonymous said...

The above named individuals are a major part of the problem; with the exception of a couple, most agree with the current form of school governance and curriculum and chime in perfect unison "la-la-la-la-la" when any dissenting voice has the audacity to speak above a whisper.

Anonymous said...

The trimester is part of the negotiated language of the contract.

Negotiation is a simple concept but very difficult activity to engage in. The idea is that each side agrees to a give and take. Give them this and take that from them.

Few people want to engage in the give part of negotiation, but without that it's all take, or nothing.

At some point in time, this trimester (schedule) language was negotiated into the contract.

If we want to change it, what can we give in exchange?

Negotiation: if it helps we can look at it as a good capitalist enterprise. In our country we pride ourselves on stories of how everyone has the opportunity to pull themselves up by their bootstraps and succeed. Any negotiation is the attempt by both sides to pull themselves up a bit higher.

Give and take. If you don't like the trimester schedule, use those SC names and addresses to encourage your SC members to negotiate, to give and take.

Unless, of course, you simply want to end collective bargaining negotiations. That is simple, too: take, take, take. Good luck with that approach. A lot of blood was spilled in this country in the efforts to get workers' rights. I doubt the workers are simply going to say sure take whatever you want.

Anonymous said...

9:39 What about the children's rights?

Anonymous said...


what the teachers would get in return for giving back the schedule to the administration: the respect of the community and the gratitude of the students (who would be under much less stressful conditions). The HS principle thinks we should have semesters. This issue makes the teachers look bad. Who wants that? What other district in MA allows the teachers control over the school schedule, like Amherst?

Anonymous said...

the give and take makes sense but where in all that are the students needs? is their education just a bargaining chip to get some more?

Anonymous said...

What many of you don't know or understand is that one of the reasons the trimester system was put in place was to relieve the amount of stress the students are under in high school.

Anonymous said...

So, it's alright for everyone else to negotiate the best deals they can for themselves, but teachers have to do what's best for the kids and should make any sacrifices the community calls for, whenever the community wants?

Tell that to the community members who negotiated the trimester language into the contract.

Better yet, why don't you make more sacrifices for the children? Why doesn't every citizen pledge to contribute more tax money to the children?

Our local pool isn't open. Think of all the children who can't afford a week on the Cape or the Vineyard, or if you're of the filthy rich in the community, Nantucket. Why don't all of you folks give more of your lives and income to the children?

Please remember that like a lot of organizations in America, schools have a business side. You can't cry no fair over contract history. Both sides agreed to the current contract. If the community really does want to change the trimester schedule, then it has to bring something to negotiate with. Pointing to one side or the other and insisting it must change for the kids' sake is simply out of play in the business aspect of this world.

You don't see health care companies lowering their prices for the kids' sake do you? How about baseball teams? movie theaters? record companies? phone companies? internet providers? Why aren't we telling all of these kinds of organizations to sacrifice more for the kids?

Teachers would get the respect from the community? Is that the same respect the teachers got when the gave half of last year's raise back? That doesn't buy much at the grocery store and lasted about as long as the average attention span.

Anonymous said...


I think you misunderstand negotiations:

"to deal or bargain with another or others, as in the preparation of a treaty or contract or in preliminaries to a business deal."

It does not mean something MUST be given if something is taken away. I hope you are NOT on any negotiating team.

Ed said...

If we want to change it, what can we give in exchange?

What we give in exchange is simple: We don't shut the whole damn thing down and tell you all to go f*** yourselves.

All that workers' rights stuff you speak of is Private Sector where competition serves as a check on stupidity like negotiating away management rights.

What you have to realize is that at a certain point, and we are almost there, the number of people who either have no children or who have pulled their children out of the ARSD will exceed the number who have children in the district.

This is the tipping point -- when you get here, your game will be over because revenue is not "negotiated" -- it is at the pleasure of the taxed. At some point the taxpayers will simply demand an across-the-board cut in the school budget -- and there isn't a damn thing that the teacher's union can do about it.

Oh, yes, you can make the children suffer, but then more and more parents will start homeschooling and you will have fewer and fewer students to justify your obscenely bloated salaries.

My first teaching contract was for $13K. That is where teacher's salaries have gone in the past 20 years -- and you folk ought to be aware of just how good you all have it and simply not try to demand anything else....

Ed said...

One more thing -- have you noticed how the US Post Office is doing recently?

Much of the technology that is harming them actually came into existence because of them. And many of the new exciting things in education are coming out of a parental desire to bypass the public schools in the education of their children and the public's desire to bypass the university in their own enrichment education.

Look at the History Channel -- who are the educators behind that? Are they advertising which school system or university is? (NO, they aren't.) Doesn't that tell you something????

So make all the demands you want to, you are headed toward an iceberg and if you wish to accelerate so as to hit it harder, you just will sink quicker....

Ed said...

9:39 What about the children's rights?

What about the taxpayer's rights? What about the rights of the entire Commonwealth to know that the children of Amherst won't be a burden on society in the future because they got a good (largely state funded) education today?

Or, in the case of Amherst, didn't...

Anonymous said...

Yea lets just shut down all the schools and fire all the teachers. Good idea, Ed. We don't need any schools and we sure as hell don't need any teachers.

Just think how low our taxes would be if we didn't need to worry about and fund those pesky things called schools manned by those unnecessary beings called teachers.

Anonymous said...

"Why doesn't every citizen pledge to contribute more tax money to the children? " the community did EXACTLY that when they voted FOR the override.

But there is no reasoning with someone as hysterical as you.

BTW the community was grateful for the teachers give back last year (and I don't believe that it amounted to half their raises (lets be accurate here))

Anonymous said...

Leave Ed's comments out of it, for a moment.

Did you see the opposition that Anon 9:39 am sets up for us? Workers' rights versus what's good for our kids' learning? And we wonder why we can't get anything accomplished in Amherst?

I don't know whether it's more or less "stressful" under the trimester system. What I do know is taking one half-year (summer + a trimester) away from important forms of learning such as on languages and math is bad for the whole process.

If it was a subject of negotiation years ago with teachers, that was a mistake, a mistake that needs to be corrected. How long do we have to wait?

Anonymous said...

anon 3:21

How do we justify the average outcomes of Amherst with the extreme amounts we spend per student?

Remember our expenditure per student is greater than 24 of 25 of the top districts in EASTERN Mass where costs are far higher than here.

This administration is out of control, malfeasant, and secretive. And that is why there is discontent in Amherst.

Three years ago I voted for the override - and it lost. Last year I voted against after learning more about the system. As the SC fails in its oversight and administrators squander the gold and goodwill of Amherst residents, the children suffer.

Anonymous said...

You say "out of control, malfeasant, and secretive" to describe this school administration.


I'm going with defensively complacent.

But they have gotten through some rough water with a futile attempt at citizen oversight, and now they have smooth sailing ahead.

Ed said...

But they have gotten through some rough water with a futile attempt at citizen oversight, and now they have smooth sailing ahead.

No. They will crash & burn just like George W. Bush did, just like the mASSgop will -- and for the very same reasons.

What GWB did, what the mASSgop (aka 'Team Mitt') did was to exclude anyone who wasn't willing to blindly parrot the approved mantra. Anyone who questioned anything was pushed overboard, which you can only do if there is no real competition and no real accountability.

With anyone who might ask any questions already gone, all you have are mindless robots who dare not question anything -- and who won't. That is how you wind up with Mitt Romney hiring Bectel to inspect the defective tunnel ceilings that Bectel itself installed, and how the Boston Herald knows he has done it before he does.

Team Maria is going to make a really big mistake -- a really really big one -- and it will be like the 2006 and 2008 elections were for the GOP....

I don't know what it will be, but they will make one...

Ed said...

So, it's alright for everyone else to negotiate the best deals they can for themselves, but teachers have to do what's best for the kids

OK, imagine if Charlie Scherpa had been stupid enough to negotiate a clause into the police contract that said that they didn't have to answer domestic violence calls within an hour of shift change -- and then let's say that a bunch of women were having the living daylights beaten out of them at 10PM and having to wait until Midnight for an officer response to their 911 calls...

Exactly how long do you think this would be tolerated?

First, the officers wouldn't dream of doing something like this -- no matter how p****d off they were at management -- and likely would have a few choice words for any union rep who tried to talk them into it.

But say they did. Say it was established and public that they weren't going to roll on a domestic violence 911 call within an hour (either way) of shift change -- and then say they demanded that the town "negotiate" this and demanded to know what they would be given for eliminating this provision of their contract.

Anyone really want to think this would be tolerated????

My guess is an irate town meeting, a new police chief, and any thoughts they had of new cruisers or a pay raise not being considered for the budget for the next 3-4 years.....

How is this different?

Never forget that the Trimester is about teachers having to work LESS -- just like cops not having to take new calls at the end of the shift. That is all this is about....

Ed said...

Why doesn't every citizen pledge to contribute more tax money to the children?

We have DOUBLED the amount of money we spend on K-12 education in the past 20 years -- I don't see double the education. And how much MORE do you want????

If the community really does want to change the trimester schedule, then it has to bring something to negotiate with.

If the community really wanted the UMass students to stop being such obnoxious drunks, then it has to bring something to negotiate with on that as well. And if you don't, not only will we puke on your lawn, but we will start dropping our pants and s**ting on it as well -- right in front of your children.

Why do I not think that would be an effective argument for the UMass Student Govt Assn to make?

You don't see health care companies lowering their prices for the kids' sake do you?

I see B. Hussain Obama trying to take them over and shut them down....

Push this enough and people will say "no mas" and mean it...

Ed said...

Yea lets just shut down all the schools and fire all the teachers.

No! Shut down THESE schools and fire THESE teachers.

We will have schools regardless -- we will educate our children, I just don't think you folk are the ones who will be doing it much longer....

We will have teachers -- and society made it clear 20 years ago that it would be willing to pay good money for good ones -- but we aren't getting that....

Anonymous said...

Ed, go already. Please. I am sorry to tell you that you add nothing to the discussion.

Anonymous said...

I've extracted one noteworthy pearl of wisdom from all of the Ed bluster, most of it unnecessary and inflammatory.

If parents of school-age children begin to send those children elsewhere to schools other than our public ones in increasing numbers, something is lost. Something is lost culturally and educationally inside the schools.

But, also, something is lost politically, a consensus of political and fiscal support for those schools. We've seen that consensus operate in some, but not all, of the recent override votes. And those with longer memories in town know that Amherst has been blessed over the decades with relatively elderly people who were firm supporters of increased taxation for public schools.

Our schools, therefore, sit on top of something that is very fragile politically. And, if parents who are strongly invested in education for their children opt to go elsewhere with their young ones, the rich learning environment we have in our schools is thereby endangered, too. I think that these trend lines are starting to show.

When push comes to shove on each override vote, I've decided to vote "yes", but I still view the schools in Amherst as having unique capacities NOW to resist public accountability, far greater than other parts of the public sector in town. Such resistance works in the short run to drive the critics and dissenters off the political playing field, but, in the long run, it may turn out to be a self-inflicted wound.

One can love these schools, as I do, and love what they have done for my child, and still see the problems and the room for improvement.

Rich Morse

LarryK4 said...

Well said Mr. Morse. Welcome back.

Anonymous said...

Waaay back in 1979, I had a single working mother tell me, "Don't ever let them know you live in an apartment. They will look down on you and treat you differently." "They" were the 'regular townspeople' in Amherst.

If more people send their children to school elsewhere, you will have only lower income students remaining in the Amherst schools. And you will be replicating the economic divisions of old. (Now it's o.k. to live in an apartment, as long as you call it a condo.)

Do we truly want to highlight the economic classes in our classless society?

Isn't this discussion about not getting 'enough bang for our buck'? If that is true, what is the 'bang' that we are seeking? I'm guessing it's better educated kids. And what is that? Is that higher MCAS scores? If so, wouldn't it make sense to model the teaching of those school systems that work, meaning they have higher MCAS scores?

Has anyone seen an analysis of the demographics of the students? Do we have a higher proportion of low income students, do we had a higher proportion of special needs (as in intellectually challenged) students? Do we have more new teachers, or more veterans? What has their continuing education been?

I do not think we do anyone a service to concentrate on 'teachers get paid more than I do and they work less.' That's a specious argument.

Anonymous said...


The national analogy to our local problem with schools is embedded in the recent discussion about means-testing Social Security and Medicare. This initially sounds like a great idea as a cost-saver nationally, but I have some apprehension about doing this, because I sense that it undercuts the long-term political consensus that supports these programs.

If the automatic threshold question for a young parent in Amherst becomes: do you have enough money to send your child to private school?, then I think our public schools are in trouble; means testing will be here.

The sneering comment that we just want "private schools at public prices" has always been off the mark for me. What I want as a voting citizen of Amherst are public schools that a majority of Amherst Region parents who could send their kids to private schools will opt for instead. (After all, there is a socialization down-side to sending one's children to Deerfield or Williston; it's not just the hole in one's pocket.) We know that that level of quality acceptable to parents of means is already gone in other public school systems in Massachusetts. And it can happen here, too.

If it happens, when it happens, it will not be televised or written about in the local papers.

Rich Morse

Anonymous said...

The sad thing is that now very many parents WANT to send their kids to Amherst schools for the very reasons Rich mentions, foremost to have their kids with kids of neighbors, etc. "It take a village to raise a child" idea. But despite this desire they feel the schools can't/won't be the best educational environment for their kids. So they send their kids to private schools, while wishing they didn't have to and resenting the schools for it (not to mention paying extremely high property taxes and high private tuition). Not very sure the next override will pass in that kind of environment.

Ed said...

If parents of school-age children begin to send those children elsewhere to schools other than our public ones in increasing numbers, something is lost.

I look at the lessons from history -- the demise of the Steel, Railroad and Domestic Auto Industries.

In all of these cases, unions and management agreed to things which served to wind up providing the customer a lower quality service at a higher price. All three industries really didn't care what the customer thought because they had a captive audience -- there was a time when the "Big Three" automakers decided what Americans would be driving, regardless of what they wanted to drive.

New technologies came in. Japan started selling cheap high-quality cars (as did Volkswagen) and two generations of young people went with these cars and Detroit collapsed.

Aluminum, plastics and cardboard laminates replaced the steel can -- remember when soda, beer & motor oil all came in steel cans? Remember the "church key" opener? "Mini-mills" and foreign producers started producing specialty steels that were both cheaper and better meeting customer's needs. And our steel industry collapsed.

Everything once moved by rail -- even people -- and trolley tracks and the litter of overhead wires were tolerated because everyone used them. Labor and management became arrogant, new technologies (automobile, truck, airplane) gave people new options, and as less of the public used the rails, there was increasing pressure to rip them up. (Drive through parts of Cambridge/Boston and you will see why people wanted to get rid of them.)

My point is that the Educational Industry -- from Pre-K to Higher Ed -- is at the tipping point. Thirty years ago, I could not conceive of marketing curriculum directly to parents educating their own children in their own homes -- I now can (and am).

In addition to Mr. Moore's comments about the loss of community culture, if the public schools become nothing more than the dumping ground for the children of parents who (a) don't care and/or (b) are too dysfunctional to find different options for their kids, they will be diminished to where society will still concede that it has to have them, but will spend as little money as possible on them.

And the only educators who will be respected will be those who are not in the public schools because that is where all the important children will be.

What truly will be lost is the opportunity that now still exists for the child of parents who don't care (or worse, and I mean child abuse) to put a miserable childhood behind himself or herself and become successful.

What also will be lost is our expectation of universal literacy and a shared culture. What then?

Ed said...

If the automatic threshold question for a young parent in Amherst becomes: do you have enough money to send your child to private school?, then I think our public schools are in trouble; means testing will be here.

Public housing is a good example of this and what happened when it was done.

WW-II drew a lot of people to the cities for war-related work. The country needed these people working in these factories, and it had to house them somewhere -- and that is where the housing projects came from. Veterans coming back, marrying girlfriends who rapidly became pregnant -- these young families needed housing too.

More housing projects, this time targeted to returning veterans and their new families. And these were mixed-income communities where everyone paid the same rent, where most everyone got up in the morning and went to work, and there was a social pressure on those who didn't.

Everyone paid the same rent, which was a very small portion of the income of an ambitious young family (particularly a childless one where the wife was also working, her entire income and a good chunk of her husband's being saved for both a downpayment on a house and childbirth expenses.

(Remember that prior to the 1970's, health insurance did NOT pay for childbirth, and if you planned to have a child, you had to have the cash to pay for the childbirth expenses.)

The policy was changed from a flat rent to rent as percent of income and all of the working families immediately left the projects for economic reasons -- leaving only the single mothers and those not working behind. And the projects became unmanageable ghettos as the result.

If you means test the schools and it becomes cheaper for parents to go private, they will for that reason too....

Anonymous said...

Sent both our kids to private school, and we never saw any "socialization down side" to it. It was the best decision we ever made. Our only regret is that we didn't move the kids out of Amherst schools sooner.

Anonymous said...

Just how great are Amherst schools?


Anonymous said...

There needs to be more public discussion about the regrets about not getting kids out of Amherst schools sooner. These comments need to be taken seriously.

But if you keep it to yourself on the details, no one benefits. And others will simply pass it off as perception rather than reality.

Anonymous said...

To: July 31, 2011 3:53 PM

Ain't gonna happen from this family. Too much vilification from other Amherst parents on this topic. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7:19,

I thoroughly understand. Some sort of "exit survey" needs to be developed and distributed for those families who opt out.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could love our town, and love our schools in the same way that we love our country, with some degree of candor about how it could better strive for its ideals?

Anonymous said...

TThere IS an exit survey, supposedly sent to each exiting family . But like so many other things, we somehow never hear any results....

Anonymous said...

I got a copy of an exit survey to fill out three years after my kids left the system. Can you say "timely"?

Ed said...

Sent both our kids to private school, and we never saw any "socialization down side" to it.

I would instead use "community identity" and the concept of which community the children identify with.

There are largely three communities that children identify with:

1: Extended family & associates of their parents (includes neighbors, political/social/cultural/union/etc).

2: Religious community (if any).

3: Fellow students at school.

Of these three communities, only one is (was) universal across the town -- the cadre of fellow students. Who was it who said that "America is never as segregated as it is on Sunday Mornings?"

There are many forms of segregation -- self selection toward like persons -- and the first two groups are inherently that. I am reminded of a certain Black UMass administrator whose children played not with other children in Amherst, but with the Cosby children. And religious communities are inherently segregated on the basis of religious beliefs -- other than funerals, I don't attend Jewish or Catholic services...

When the school community switches from the local municipality to the larger geographic community of those attending the specific private school, you have a generation of young people coming of age without any particular identity with any specific municipality.

This is a larger version of what school consolidation did to smaller towns -- it is why Pelham is so desperately trying to hang onto its elementary school, they know what will happen to the town when (not if) they loose it.

And one of the reasons why Amherst is such a political quagmire is the large number of people who do not share the common experience of attending the same school system as children -- wait until they also don't share the common experience of sending their kids to the same one....

Anonymous said...

I happen to think the Amherst schools are very good..and getting better. I would not dream of sending my child anywhere else.

Anonymous said...

I didn't dream of sending my child anywhere else.

But that was before Middle School.

Anonymous said...

I pulled my child from the schools in Amherst and have never gotten an exit survey.

I am aware of other parents who have pulled their children as well.

Just get that if this administration believes it will get an adverse result - e.g. parents saying that they are pulling their kids because they have no confidence in the schools - they are not going to poll parents whose kids are leaving the schools. It is a simple as that.

Someone paying Amherst taxes that feels compelled to pay an extra $10K on educating their kid is not going to be happy with the administration.

Administrators have probably been advised by their attorney to avoid these exit interviews if possible.

Anonymous said...

Watch the SC meetings this fall and you will think that everything is absolutely great. Governance by cheerleaders.

And then while they lull you into a happy stupor, they will:

a) do absolutely nothing about a dysfunctional trimester system;
b) slowly dismantle the elementary language program, which they were never in favor of in the first place;
c) continue to fail to provide parents of 8th graders the amount of information they need to make an INFORMED choice at a crucial fork in the road for their children's math futures.

The troublemakers may be gone from School Committee, the dragonlady's blog may be down, but the issues and the unhappiness lingers.

Ed said...

Someone paying Amherst taxes that feels compelled to pay an extra $10K on educating their kid

This is the issue that the Baptists raised in 1820 and which fueled the disestabilshment movement -- why should they pay taxes to support the Congregational Church when they are already paying for the Baptist one?

And the same thing is going to happen here -- why should parents pay for the public schools when they are sending their kids somewhere else????

Anonymous said...

Hey Roach Patrol,

Off the meds again? Too bad. I thought they had found a cure for your insights. Back to the drawing board.

Smoke the Roach

No more nest, no more roaches said...

"Hey Roach Patrol,

Off the meds again? Too bad. I thought they had found a cure for your insights. Back to the drawing board."


What comes around goes around, my little parasitic friend.

Now, come here... look at my new shoes.

Roach Patrol said...

"Last Friday, Rodriguez met at his office with Hajir and Churchill to discuss allegations contained in a 65-page evaluation composed by school staff that was read by members of the Regional School Committee. The contents of these evaluations have not been released and a request for copies has been submitted.

Monday night, Rodriguez went to the Regional Middle School and signed a joint statement with the chairmen of the Regional, Amherst and Union 26 School Committees.

The statement read: "After the committees' and Dr. Rodriguez's receipt of the survey results from employees,

particularly the feedback from a majority of senior administrative personnel who report to Dr. Rodriguez,

the committees and Dr. Rodriguez agreed that it was in the best interests of all parties for Dr. Rodriguez to leave his position as superintendent of the districts."

Never forget what roaches can do.