Wednesday, October 15, 2014

"Vetting Communities"

 Calvin Terrell dealing with unhappy customers

If you operate a service business and someone complains about your product you can either blame the customer and ignore the complaint, or think about what you may be doing wrong to ensure it doesn't happen again.

Smart businesses -- the ones that stay in business -- choose the latter.

Obviously Calvin Terrell, who sells racial harmony with a side order of anti-bullying, doesn't subscribe to that theory.  Perhaps why he worked at a Red Lobster rather than owning one.

Although he is smart enough not to bite the hand that feeds him, in this case Amherst College ($38,000 -- a lot of bread!).

But his way of dealing with the snowballing controversy over his graphic presentation to young children is to blame the Schools.  Which of course is -- like the anecdotes he uses in his presentations (Columbine, Lord Jeff's infected blankets) -- partially correct. 

Yes the Schools should have sent out the parental notifications warning parents about the graphic nature of Terrell's pitch.  But I'm also certain that if the Schools knew exactly how graphic that pitch was going to be they would never have allowed it in the first place.

To suggest that Amherst of all places is an atypical outlier and somehow overly sensitive about mature material is absurd.

If Terrell bothered to do his homework he would know that ARHS was the only high school in America to perform the decidedly R rated 'Vagina Monologues' in 2004, and five years before that created an international uproar by cancelling 'West Side Story' because of alleged "racism."

Both controversies brought on by overly empowered 17-year-old's.

The Schools have now gone into their usual mode of dealing with controversy.   Stick your head in the sand and wait till things blow over.

Worked well with the "Nut Ban" controversy.  Last night the Regional School Committee voted to set a policy that allows administration do pretty much what they want with nuts (insert joke here).

And a year from now that same diffident Regional School Committee will vote a policy allowing the administration to bring in any speaker they damn well please.

Well at least David Koresh is no longer available.


Anonymous said...

The video doesn't tell us who the parent is, but I just have one question for her: why aren't you taking this anger to the School Committee? Don't talk to Calvin about this. He's just the hired flunky. He was hired TO SAY THESE THINGS.

Parents, we need to go to the School Committee and tell them this kind of nonsense needs to stop. We need to demand Ms Geryk and her ilk step down once and for all, so we can return our town to the task of educating our children, not scaring the crap out of them!

Vote here

Anonymous said...

Maybe Terrell doesn't realize that Newtowne is a bit more than an hour from here and in Boston there was a bombing at the Boston Marathon and that two planes loaded with passengers left from Logan Airport and were flown into the Twin Towers and that many of us had friends and relatives that were in the Twin Towers or live in NYC or are first responders. And that this generation has grown up during long wars in Iraq and Afganistan and that governments torture people and that sometimes someone in a mask and wig guns down people living in a movie theater. And you can watch people being beheaded or bombed by airstrikes on Utube.

What new message does Terrell have for our kids--that the world is not safe? I think they already know that.

Some empathy and common sense, please.

Prof. R F said...

So cute all these posts dancing around who really should be blamed when something does not go right for your kid....., the parent, you who failed in trusting 100s of people you don't know, who don't care about you except your money and your ability to produce offspring (so they get more money).

Parents are responsible for their children, they are also responsible when they trust the wrong Amherst schools and their countless administrators.

It does sound silly for a business to blame the customer, it sounds even more silly when a parent blames anyone else for how their kid is raised.

Most people raise their kids by community committee, how sad they don't have the resources to do it the way they want on their own. Most, even around here, don't even have the skills or resources to coordinate with a few other parents so you guys can work together to do the job better at a fraction of the cost.

The schools are simply overpriced socialized babysitting and job programs, to deny this is simply ignorant. There is no evidence to the contrary, only desire for it not to be so, but no grit to change it.

How often do you meet your kids teacher, who spends more time with them than you do and say,"who he is so smart, I am so glad that my kids get to spend time learning from him in stead of me." Funny think is, he is smart, he gets your resources and has little accountability, most parents are more critical of the party house next door than the people taking care of their kids.

Anonymous said...

Actually I am impressed with the teachers at all levels in the Amherst system.

Prof R. F. said...

How about the teachers that stood there while this guy was talking, impressed with that?

I am impressed with the size of the school and its staff, and especially the number of issues that seem to flow out of those buildings, truly impressive.

Prof RF said...

Our world is pretty safe....there are just is just a lot of sensation news coverage of rare events, like on this blog.

The world is pretty safe for most Mass citizens. Statistics and reality support this.

Newtown and the Marathon (even NY and PA 911 events) are outliers and our reactions to them influence our communities more than the events themselves.

The kids are smarter than we think, they probably know that adults get worked up over anything and to generally ignore adult concerns. But that is the way it has always been.

Now for kids in 1943 Europe, the world was not safe.


Now who thought is was the schools job to address more than reading and math?

Anonymous said...

"How about the teachers that stood there while this guy was talking, impressed with that?"

If the teachers say something against the administration's wishes, they know what will happen to them.

Anonymous said...

Parents, we need to go to the School Committee and tell them this kind of nonsense needs to stop.

Yeah, there was school committee meeting last night, didn't see you (or anyone else) there...

The "yes" votes on the poll have crept up overnight to .0018% of the pop. of Amherst... an anonymous and cowardly petitioner, all 65 "yes" votes anonymous, and from all over the state, and a poll that allows one person to vote multiple times...

Steve Akalis said...

Does Calvin Terrell and his silly hat just do appearances at Amherts Public Schools. I have never heard of that man till I worked up there and wish I never did.

Tom said...

All this nonsense reminds me of Huckleberry Finn where the frauds come to town and fleece the good townspeople, except instead of faith healers now it's race healers.

Keep up the good work, Larry. You deserve an award you will probably never get for all you do.

Anonymous said...

The Schools have now gone into their usual mode of dealing with controversy. Stick your head in the sand and wait till things blow over.

How many personal responses to parents inquiries, how many letters to parents, how many statements in newspapers, how many interviews for t.v. news, saying "We made a mistake, we accept responsibility, we are sorry, we have changed the way we will prepare for speakers in the future" do you need, Larry, before it doesn't look like the admin. is "sticking their heads in the sand and waiting to things blow over"?

Most parents seem to have accepted the mistake and the apology, and that's why a mob of angry parents did not show up demanding answers last night at the sc meeting, like you wished had happened.

Larry Kelley said...

What the Schools need to do is terminate with extreme prejudice their contract with Terrell.

If it comes down to Maria or Calvin we know who Maria is going to choose.

And since you're such a little suck up for the Schools I'm surprised you don't have the guts to leave your name.

Hell, Maria would give you a raise (she seems to give them to all the other Admins).

Anonymous said...

So it's fine to bash the schools and not leave your name but not to praise the schools and not leave your name? I don't hear disparaging comments about Anon school badgers from you. Why the nasty comment about an Anon defender of the schools?

Larry Kelley said...

Hey I'm an animal lover and badgers are my favorite. CAN!

Anonymous said...

if you are happy with the schools I don't see why you'd be ashamed to leave your name. however, if you say negative things it can come back in negative ways towards your kids or your job. its happened before.

Anonymous said...

If you like the schools you are bashed here. You are only praised if you think the schools are awful. People here comment constantly on things they know nothing about. The Amherst schools are good schools.

Walter Graff said...

Give the teachers bonuses for performance. Let's allow our great teachers to really shine and let's allow our kids to get all they deserve.

Steve Akalis said...

ARPS does have some very good teachers. I did get to know a lot of them from working in their classroom. It's not the teachers or students whom make ARPS look bad but the way the Administration and School Board seem to handle the mishaps that have been occurring.

Anonymous said...

Or at least give the teachers overtime pay like the cops and firefighters and DPW workers get.

Some cops make over $100,000 a year because they work "overtime". Must be nice, as they say.

Larry Kelley said...

Cops, firefighters and DPW don't get summers off with pay.

Anonymous said...

Neither do teachers. They get paid for 10 months, and some choose to break up their pay over twelve months. Others don't and take all their pay in ten months and get by with saved money or another job like summer school or during summer or working on a farm or at J.C. Penney's during the summer.

Dr. Ed said...

Teachers get full benefits during the summer, and the public cost (i.e. total cost less the 20% that employee pays) comes to about 1/3 of salary.

In fact, teachers only work half a year -- 180 x 2 = 360, throw in a few "personal days" not to mention "'sick' day" and you have more than covered any of the extra days before or after the school year.

Facts matter folks -- teachers have things to complain about, but pay ain't one of them.

Dr. Ed said...

As to teachers' pay, there is an interesting CATO Institute report showing that while we (MA) are paying 160% more (in inflation adjusted dollars) than we did in 1972, educational outcome is actually lower than then.


Facts matter....

Anonymous said...

I don't see any teachers complaining about their pay here on this blog Ed.
The average full time worker works 237 days a year. Teachers work 180 days plus miscellaneous curriculum days and other days when the kids aren't in school. So we're now at about 185 or so. Which is in line with other full time workers except for the 2 months of summer when they are not teaching kids. Many teachers use that time for PD.
Teachers work incredibly hard. They are far from overpaid. You're just jealous Ed.

Dr. Ed said...

Not jealous, but pissed.

We have nearly doubled (in inflation-adjusted dollars) what we are paying for education -- TWICE and we aren't getting anything better than what we started with.

I call that FRAUD

At least the AFD routinely saves lives today of folks who would have been DOA in 1972. People aren't dropping dead in parking lots of sudden heart attacks the way men routinely did back then. And I don't think we are paing 180% more than we used to for AFD...

Oh Jeff Parr, wanna run those statistics? (My guess is that you want to -- on a per-run basis, I doubt the Ambulance costs more than even twice what it did then, not nearly four times....)

Prof. r f said...

Hey Dr.

Teacher pay is above the American Median.

By definition, teachers are paid better than most Americans.

Despite this, I think they should be paid parents of the kids they teach.

Dr. Ed said...

Prof R. F. Said:
Despite this, I think they should be paid parents of the kids they teach.

This touches on something that few in Amherst seem to comprehend -- fertility is inversely proportional to a woman's education and economic status -- unmarried single mothers who didn't complete high school tend to have lots of children (with lots of different fathers) while educated women with careers tend to have few (if any) children and if married, are usually married to the child's father.

There are exceptions, like the Halloween Snowstorm was an exception, but "tends to" means that we usually don't get a couple feet of snow in October.

And in Amherst, the people who have the children are increasingly on public assistance -- as a percentage of the whole the ARSD does not have as many professor's kids as it did in the 1970's for three reasons:

1: The professors were younger then -- as UMass expanded by the size of Amherst College annually, a lot of young faculty were hired -- and their children are now grown.

2: The young faculty (i.e. of an age to have K-12 kids) not only have FEWER children than they did in the 1960's-'70's, but they bought out in B'Town or Hadley because they could get more for less.

3: The apartment complexes now being rented Section 8 either didn't exist in the 1970's or were brand-new housing rented almost entirely to UM students.

HENCE Amherst has a changed demographics -- something lost in the racial issues -- and the parents of the children increasingly lack the money to pay for a lot of things...

Dr. Ed said...

Student Jonathan Romero tells The Daily Hampshire Gazette his room in the Washington high-rise dorm was targeted. Romero, who is Honduran, says he does not feel safe, although he turned down on offer to move out of his room and into the campus hotel.

First, when you turn down a NICE hotel room (with maid service) for a room in T-6 -- well, I wouldn't...

Second, isn't he an "American"? Shouldn't he be identifying himself as an "American"?

Anonymous said...

What would gapping if for once we tried teaching love of country instead of constantly dragging America down? Look at the good things that we've got. A great Democrat once inspired the nation to "Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country." We'e learning the exact opposite these days. Pity.

Anonymous said...

Listen to "Who Killed Davy Moore" Great piece about blame.

Anonymous said...

What impresses you? That they dress like the kids? Try going for a job interview in jeans, t-shirt and sneakers some time. Great example for our kids.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of hats, isn't it proper to remove one's hat in a school building? Or was that meeting held elsewhere?

bristol curries said...

I notice you didn't leave yours either .