Sutherland for Schools blog
Some of you already know that I voted against the $1 million for TFA ($8000 per teacher for 25 teachers per year for 5 years. My main issue is that they never have crucial real classroom experience (they go to a 5-week "training" but no real classroom responsibility, but there is also a significant issue on retention.
The last two weeks feature a lot of bad behavior and some of it is appearing on the CIA blog (www.ciafwisd.blogspot.com). The latest post is about the Arlington Heights High School prom night, when six baseball players and two cheerleaders, obviously inebriated, were allowed into the dance. The comments are illuminating. Apparently the AHHS staff let them in and very little was done in the way of punishment of the kids.
Here is the letter from the US Office of Civil Rights on transgender students.
Readers, your comments are helpful to me. I am concerned about the split in our community and am working with others on this. In a few days I will blog again about it after some more thought and consultation.
Well, I was wrong. Superintenedt Scribner said nothing in response to my request, proper under board policy, that we discuss this administrative regulation some time in near future and vote on it. President Ramos merely said he received the request but did not agree to put it on the agenda. Until I get a written agreement to place the item back on the agenda, there is no point in having another meeting. It was asserted last night that this policy was enacted in 2011. I invite you to look at this policy (FFH local) and make up your own minds. The existing policy is at http://pol.tasb.org/Policy/Download/1101?filename=FFH(LOCAL).pdf However, this version is the 2014 version; the original 2011 version is not available. Here is the link to the revision Superintendent Scribner approved in April: http://www.fwisd.org/files/_PdD0T_/03dcc86328dd3f753745a49013852ec4/Transgender_Student_Guidelines.pdf
Well, I was wrong. Superintenedt Scribner said nothing in response to my request, proper under board policy, that we discuss this administrative regulation some time in near future and vote on it. President Ramos merely said he received the request but did not agree to put it on the agenda. Until I get a written agreement to place the item back on the agenda, there is no point in having another meeting.
It was asserted last night that this policy was enacted in 2011. I invite you to look at this policy (FFH local) and make up your own minds.
The existing policy is at http://pol.tasb.org/Policy/Download/1101?filename=FFH(LOCAL).pdf
However, this version is the 2014 version; the original 2011 version is not available.
Here is the link to the revision Superintendent Scribner approved in April:
The blogger is correct that the positions of network specialists have been eliminated. Network specialists provided support in the four tested content areas. There were approximately 15 per content area—for the total of sixty. These individuals were responsible for providing support for all schools, all grade levels (some elementary, some secondary), in their tested content area.
The DII model is different. The philosophy of DII is not one in which the DII coach is responsible for building a teacher’s content knowledge or supporting a specific content area. The DII model addresses expectations for quality instruction in all content areas and all grades. The model honors the role of the teacher as the individual responsible for knowing his or her content area and focuses rather on how the teacher is planning, delivering, and evaluating instruction while ensuring that the students are active participants in each lesson.
DII is not a model that I have worked with in the past, but I have been very impressed by the depth of the research behind the model and with the fact that the importance of the relationship between the teacher and student is an essential part of learning.
Knowing that we are having some schools that are struggling more than others, Dr. Scribner’s leadership team decided to concentrate initial resources in the most struggling schools. As Dr. Scribner states periodically, “Sending the firefighters to the fire.” As you know, many of our schools do very, very well and require little or no intervention or support from central office. However, this is not the case with all schools. This first cohort of coaches will be working with approximately 50 schools that have been identified as those in highest need. Initial thinking has been to expand the cohort to the next third of schools in each of the two subsequent years.
If you have any more specific questions about DII, Dr. Salato would be more than happy to discuss them in depth. She is much more qualified than I to do this.
Becky Salato, Ed.D.
Chief Operating Officer
Action Learning Systems, Inc.
135 Rosemead Blvd.
Pasadena, CA 91107
Texas education code [G] [Sec.37.002(a), (b) and (c)] allows teachers to remove students from the classroom.
Here begins a series of comments and information which relate to discipline.
What is a teacher to do when managing the behavior of a child with diagnosed mental illness? After months of requests with no suggestions to be told this late in the year that it is my fault the child misbehaves....and that I need to build "rapport". If I had "rapport" this would not be occurring. This recommendation came MONTHS after he was observed. Then I am told by the counseling staff they do NOT want behavioral updates and would NOT be assisting him anymore. All the teachers that have this child want to cry....for him because he is so unhappy....for the other kids because he impedes their learning.
This from a senior national TFA staffer via Diane Ravitch's blog:
I thought the community forum would feature complaints about principals but it was all about the central office and their unrelenting sabotage of reasonable efforts by principals and teachers to address unacceptable behavior by students, including teacher assaults. This when, acording to the 2014-15 climate survey, over half of secondary students are "always" or "sometimes" afraid at school.
- Criminal acts are regularly ignored by school administration and/or police. I am not sure which. Teachers and administrators need to be told what the law is and how FWISD plans to enforce it. (I was told we have no documentation of the number of referrals to campus police officers.)
- Teachers are kept in the dark regarding laws and district policies dealing with less serious student behavior and believe they are also often routinely ignored.
- Central office staff regularly "call out" schools who issue the most office referrals at principal meetings
- A disproportionate number of troublesome students live outside the school's attendance boundary. But central office staff has instructed principals to ignore this unless the student is "tardy or absent" too much. (Nothing about tearing up the classroom.). Principals need to be encouraged to use their community liaisons or other staff, to identify students who live outside the school attendance area. One elementary school told me they have about 50 students who live in the Crowley school district.
- When students are sent home for significant misbehavior, too many parents of troublemaking students routinely call "downtown" to ask that their student's punishment be rescinded. In turn, principals are pressured to rescind the action. This is a form of bullying by parents.
I am sick and tired of our leaders talking about transforming school districts. We read about some allegedly major changes wrought by various districts. Even worse is the national obsession with evaluating teachers using test scores (this means you too, Texas). The Houston ISD has gained a lot of attention by using test scores to evaluate teachers. Their teacher representatives, the AFT finally got so sick of it a couple of years ago that they brought suit. I understand it will be going to court later this year.