Sutherland for Schools blog
There were parents at the board meeting . . . and after . . . who are upset at the district. Here is what one wrote about our $15K bonus and 5-year contract:
One of you challenged my $100,000 cost of Palazzolo legal fees, so I checked. Yes, reader, you are correct. they are $422,557 . . . as of July 1 2012.
It isn't easy managing a 1000-student middle school with a 96% minority enrollment, especially when the district mandates an 8-period day, which means kids are in the halls 9 times, and "grades" the administration based on keeping office referrals and suspensions as low as possible.
Regular readers of this column will remember that the superintendent and cabinet took $30 million in services and staff away from the principals and have moved control over it into the central office. Part of this involved in stripping our secondary schools of nearly 250 teachers over the last two years.* Please note that existing plans involve taking another 100 core teachers over each of the next 3 years.
It will be worth your wait.
Parents and teachers often wonder what to do about assaults at our schools. It helps when a video is sent forward This morning I received a video of boys fighting in the restroom. I have asked for action on these matters but I have not received any specific feedback.
We already know that this year, the district instituted an 8-period day, reducing class time from 55 to 45 minutes. In middle schools, after discounting 5 minutes for the class to settle in and take roll, this already amounts to a reduction of 20% of last year's time (10/50).
Thanks to the Dr. Washington and her staff and the high school personnel--all of them--who carefully went one by one through the list of students eligible to vote and registered so many of them. We have 1,518 students of voting age and 878, 58%, have registered to vote. When one considers that an unknown number of the remaining 42% are not citizens, the percentage rises.
I don't know if it's worse that the board voted 6-1 for giving attorneys nearly $1 million in general fund dollars to "sell" a bunch of "underused properties" or whether the money would buy fifteen sorely needed teachers, mostly I believe should be for our middle schools. I plan to post the list of "underutilized properties" at the information page of this blog shortly.
We had a particularly ugly scene at Wedgwood Middle School last week, reportedly only the latest of a fairly large number of student disturbances. Two students got into a fight and in the middle of it, one hit the principal.
I'm getting tired of having administrators assert that class size doesn't matter. I received this from a teacher this weekend:
Sorry for the delay in responding. Our liability insurance (since cancelled) says we are on the hook for the first $100K in attorneys fees, and TASB pays the first $1 million in damages. The issue on interest paid to Mr. Palazzolo for the delay in paying him, if there is such a decision, was waived earlier in the process.
Have an anonymous person call Dr. Sheffield, head of Special Ed, at 817-814-2833 and she will call the principal and tell her to stop. This is not in the job requirements of the special ed staff.
instruction for a child specified in their IEP? If all of the other students are receiving instruction why are the special ed students with IEPs not recieving instruction because the SPECIAL ed tecaher is in an ARD? Also, the Speech specialist is in on these ARD meetings during school and she is not providing her services specified legally in the paperwork for her students. She is supposed to provide services but she is not during ARD meetings or speech meetings. Should these meetings need to happen after school to not violate the law?