Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Where Were You, Anti-Student Cabal?

It was a great meeting of the board of education last night at the Middle School.  There was a really inspirational and fascinating presentation that engineering and technology faculty from the middle school and high school gave the board. Two students talked about how much they've learned thanks to the technology that's available to them in the district, from the CAD programs they use at the middle and high schools, to the 3D printer they have at the high school. A recent alumna talked about how the technology curriculum at Clarence schools set her up for a job as an architectural engineer in New York City.

In fact, we learned that the investment that the district makes in its engineering and technology curricula results in 100% job placement with an overall economic impact of over $9 million in salaries being paid to Clarence engineering graduates.

But you weren't there.

Dr. Hicks took some time to briefly congratulate and praise the cast, crew, orchestra, and faculty advisers who worked very hard to pull off an astounding Spring musical, "Pirates of Penzance".

But you weren't there.

I didn't see you at the musical, either. There was a free performance available through the Senior Center.

Where were you? Surely you're not choosing to remain deliberately ignorant to the amazing achievements that our students are making with faculty guidance?

We know that you were meeting and plotting on Thursday to vote down the budget in May. We know that Joe Lombardo refused to listen to anything that board members Maryellen Kloss and Susan Altman had to say when they showed up, saying that he refused to be "brainwashed" by them. We know that Ellie Corcoran wasn't interested in learning about facts, but only about voting down a budget that - worst-case scenario - is 32% less than what she paid in 2006.

We know that your little group is full of shit when it comes to your claims that you want the students to have a good education. If so, why did you recommend that the district eliminate all AP courses? Why make cuts to art and music?

I mean, you guys have been bleating on senselessly about "local control" of the district, but doing what you suggest would force the district to abandon all state aid and make up the entire budget from local sources. Your school taxes would either skyrocket, or - this is the part you want - the district would have to essentially cut its way into mediocrity.

Let's not kid ourselves. You didn't show up to hear about the great things going on in the district because that doesn't comport with your agenda. You've made up your mind to portray the district as a spendthrift that's only good because our kids are well-off. Good luck with that. The students, parents, and alumni are going to make sure you fail.

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