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Columbus City Schools - News, Updates, and Discussion

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Columbus City Schools – News, Updates, and Discussion

Viewing 15 posts - 436 through 450 (of 617 total)
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  • #326998
    Anne Evans
    Anne Evans
    Keymaster

    I spoke tonight at the community meeting at East High School, in support of my child’s school, Fifth Ave, and really, in support of a fair examination of the entire district as a way to reduce the 50M deficit.

    It was a long meeting. Very emotionally charged. It ran long, 6pm until 9:30pm when the ending time was posted as 8pm.

    I will note here that it was very disappointing to see newly CHOSEN (chosen, NOT elected) board member Mary Jo Hudson excuse herself only 1 hour and 10 minutes into the meeting.

    COME ON! The board is supposedly holding these meeting to listen to the community’s feedback and she couldn’t make the time! This is her JOB!

    This is important and will affect the lives of hundreds of students, not to mention all of their parents, teachers, staff, and everyone who lives around these schools!

    DISRESPECTFUL.

    I am sharing my speech below. I know CCS is going to say budgets are separate and that some monies that have been allocated for certain expenditures can’t be used for other costs, blahdee blahdee blah. BUT I feel this district is in a time of bootstrapping.

    THEY SAY THEY DON’T HAVE ANY MONEY.

    When you don’t have money, you don’t continue to green-light expenditures!

    It is unfair for the board and committee to be saying this deficit is because of the levy failure. This deficit issue was known well in advance and that levy that was put forth to the community was JUNK.

    If they would have listened to the community, and reworked it before taking it to ballot, the outcome may have been different.

    Thank you for reading this far. :) I know this looks like a wall of text. It took me days to write the below, and lots of trials and tears and sweat, to get this under the 2 minute allowed time.

    And, I can only hope that it made some impact, and that the work is only beginning for bringing these schools up.

    ——–

    Re: Closure of Columbus City Schools, community meeting February 25, 2014

    Hello. My name is Anne Evans. I am a Fifth Avenue parent and our experience at that school has been great. I support that school and it’s program. If it needs to be right sized to Hubbard, I fully support that. I volunteer in my son’s classroom once a week, the school has wonderful teachers, staff, relationships with the community and outside programs, and great students.

    There is a growing number of families, who, like me, desire to live in the urban core of Columbus and want to send their children to Columbus City Schools, a growing number specifically to Fifth Avenue.

    This school has the growing community to make it a highly desired school for the district and neighborhood, and will become another shining star for CCS.

    We used school choice to send our son to Fifth Avenue and we are thankful that choice is not being reversed for us, unlike many others in this room, whose choices are being removed for them.

    I’d also like to congratulate Amadou Ndongo, a senior of Independence High who spoke on the 13th in support of continuing IHS. The CCS newsletter shared that he has received two awards honoring him for his outstanding football performance, academic achievement, and school leadership.

    I haven’t met him, but I am proud I High has helped him and others grow into fine young citizens and it saddens me the school is on the list to close.

    Tonight, we are discussing the closure of 6 schools and removing the choices of thousands of our community’s students, parents, teachers, and staff.

    Simultaneously, the district also has new buildings ‘in design’ for the Africentric School for 40M dollars and Ecole Kenwood and Spanish Immersion for 15.18M.

    Why is this board saying to these communities in this room, ‘we don’t have the money to keep your school open, and then saying to others, here’s 40M or 15M to build you a brand new school. Or ‘here’s 77 thousand to demolish a small building some consider an eyesore in Clintonville.’

    The head of your capital improvements department said a third high school could close if enrollment declines further. WOSU quoted her in an article today saying “But on the other hand, there’s opportunities for neighborhoods to rally around their high schools and find ways to bring the population back to it because it’s pretty devastating to a neighborhood to lose a high school.”

    I’m asking the board tonight, to find a way to allow these schools the chance to do just that.

    Thank you.

    #326999

    AmyJ
    Participant

    Bravo!

    It’s so disappointing to hear that about Mary Jo Hudson, but I’m not surprised. I’ve never seen her at a board meeting before she was given that spot and it sounds like she won’t be present for many now either. Imagine what could happen if we had a school board that actually cared about the students vs. their own political aspirations.

    #327000

    Mercurius
    Participant

    Anne for school board.

    #327001

    When Anne said this:

    “Why is this board saying to these communities in this room, ‘we don’t have the money to keep your school open, and then saying to others, here’s 40M or 15M to build you a brand new school.”

    The whole auditorium stood up. It was a beautiful thing.

    I like to make predictions. My new prediction is that the Board will use this as emotional fodder for the next levy. It will hold Brookhaven & Independence (for sure) and Maybery & Seibert (probably) hostage and introduce a levy issue to “save” them while bankrolling whatever other projects it wants.

    Given the crowds and the passions, it’d be a fantastic levy campaign strategy. Alternately, closing those schools undermines any levy campaign by alienating families.

    (Of course, my predictions are often totally wrong. That’s half the fun of predicting)

    #327002

    chaptal
    Participant

    Bravo, Anne. Bravo.

    #327003

    NDaEast
    Participant

    The state’s school rebuilding program was a response to the DeRolph decision finding Ohio’s school funding system to be unconstitutional. The legislature couldn’t agree on real funding reform (less reliance on property tax), so they gave out school building money, which is like crack to the contractors, bond underwriters, bond issuers, lawyers, and politicians who either profit or simply like to see new things built in their districts. Construction funding creates construction jobs — which are good — and everybody wants more construction. So there was a strong constituency in the statehouse to support the rebuilding program. But notice I haven’t said anything about parents and children yet.

    The bottom line is that parents and children were never the intended constituency for this rebuilding program. That is why you have this asinine building program that spends $20M rehabilitating East High School — which sits half-empty and has a beautiful new 3-court gymnasium that is 3 feet too short to host OHSAA-sanctioned tournaments; and spends $12M to demolish the historic Champion Middle School and build a new Champion Middle School, though Champion was ranked as the worst middle school in the state of Ohio. Program outputs and rationality go out the window when there is new construction money to spend.

    My daughter went to Indianola K-8, which was a perfectly fine building (though it certainly could have used some upgrades that could easily have been done during the summer). We bounced to two other swing space school buildings while the new Indianola on Weber Road was being prepped. All the movement was extremely disruptive, but of course we did get through it just fine.

    School building allows CCS to point to something new and shiny and “successful,” but it distracts the Board, administrators, teachers, parents and the public from focusing on the school system’s primary mission of educating our children.

    #327004

    AskTheCoolCookie
    Participant

    This doesn’t surprise me about Mary Jo Hudson leaving the school board meeting. She never made city council a priority, and was at best a body in the chair on the dais. She got her job at ODoI because of who she knew, and what was owed. And now the school board? Please.

    #327005

    News
    Participant

    School Issues: 5 Moments that Brought Down the House
    Published on February 26, 2014 11:50 am
    By: Miriam Bowers Abbott

    Last night’s special school board meeting packed the house at East High School. Teachers, staff, students and families flooded the school’s auditorium, balcony, and swamped the back of the space with a shoulder-to-shoulder standing crowd.

    Over one-hundred speakers took a turn at the microphone to make a plea for their respective schools. Some speeches were typed, some were impromptu, many were interrupted with the rumbling thunder of applause.

    Here are 5 comments that will stick with you:

    READ MORE: https://www.columbusunderground.com/school-issues-5-moments-that-brought-down-the-house-ma1

    #327006

    pilsner
    Participant

    NDaEast said:
    The state’s school rebuilding program was a response to the DeRolph decision finding Ohio’s school funding system to be unconstitutional. The legislature couldn’t agree on real funding reform (less reliance on property tax), so they gave out school building money, which is like crack to the contractors, bond underwriters, bond issuers, lawyers, and politicians who either profit or simply like to see new things built in their districts. Construction funding creates construction jobs — which are good — and everybody wants more construction. So there was a strong constituency in the statehouse to support the rebuilding program. But notice I haven’t said anything about parents and children yet.

    The bottom line is that parents and children were never the intended constituency for this rebuilding program. That is why you have this asinine building program that spends $20M rehabilitating East High School — which sits half-empty and has a beautiful new 3-court gymnasium that is 3 feet too short to host OHSAA-sanctioned tournaments; and spends $12M to demolish the historic Champion Middle School and build a new Champion Middle School, though Champion was ranked as the worst middle school in the state of Ohio. Program outputs and rationality go out the window when there is new construction money to spend.

    My daughter went to Indianola K-8, which was a perfectly fine building (though it certainly could have used some upgrades that could easily have been done during the summer). We bounced to two other swing space school buildings while the new Indianola on Weber Road was being prepped. All the movement was extremely disruptive, but of course we did get through it just fine.

    School building allows CCS to point to something new and shiny and “successful,” but it distracts the Board, administrators, teachers, parents and the public from focusing on the school system’s primary mission of educating our children.

    This is the way much of government currently seems to operate. The Pentagon gets weapons programs it doesn’t want but contractors and politicians do.

    I think much of the fix is getting as much money out of politics as possible with campaign finance reform.

    I’ve never been to a political fundraiser but it must be mostly contractors showing up with $2,500 (sponsor) or $500 (friend) to support Andrew Ginther or a state rep or the other offices. It gets really scary when you think about judges being influenced by the legal bribes or even a threat of supporting an opponent.

    #327007
    Anne Evans
    Anne Evans
    Keymaster

    Did anyone see this interview? I find it appalling that the board, committee, and Dr. Good were using the community feedback nights, 4 short hours, (and the first one planned on top of one of the recommended closing schools parent teacher conference night) to find out the good things happening in these schools. (At least that’s the vibe I got from this video….”there’s a lot of stuff going on in these schools that we didn’t know about”). What?! Shouldn’t a complete inventory have been taken? I guess that’s what happens when you are disengaged and only giving a couple of week’s thought to closing schools. I am happy that he says they are considering more ways to close the deficit.

    Link to watch the video.

    #327008

    News
    Participant

    School Issues: Family Surveys
    Published on February 27, 2014 3:15 pm
    By: Maria Kozelek

    There are many ways to assess schools. The Ohio Department of Education routinely measures school performance through standardized testing. Other standards of measurement include economic need, financial expenditures, graduation rate and remediation rate.

    Then there are Family Surveys.

    READ MORE: https://www.columbusunderground.com/school-issues-family-surveys-mk1

    #327009

    Im suspicious
    Participant

    Anne said:
    Did anyone see this interview? I find it appalling that the board, committee, and Dr. Good were using the community feedback nights, 4 short hours, (and the first one planned on top of one of the recommended closing schools parent teacher conference night) to find out the good things happening in these schools. (At least that’s the vibe I got from this video….”there’s a lot of stuff going on in these schools that we didn’t know about”). What?! Shouldn’t a complete inventory have been taken? I guess that’s what happens when you are disengaged and only giving a couple of week’s thought to closing schools. I am happy that he says they are considering more ways to close the deficit.

    Link to watch the video.

    I was wondering the same thing when they announced the dates, times, and locations for the meetings. With something so important the district could have had meetings at each one of the buildings on the list on separate nights to maximize possible feedback.

    #327010

    Im suspicious
    Participant

    NDaEast said:
    The state’s school rebuilding program was a response to the DeRolph decision finding Ohio’s school funding system to be unconstitutional. The legislature couldn’t agree on real funding reform (less reliance on property tax), so they gave out school building money, which is like crack to the contractors, bond underwriters, bond issuers, lawyers, and politicians who either profit or simply like to see new things built in their districts. Construction funding creates construction jobs — which are good — and everybody wants more construction. So there was a strong constituency in the statehouse to support the rebuilding program. But notice I haven’t said anything about parents and children yet.

    The bottom line is that parents and children were never the intended constituency for this rebuilding program. That is why you have this asinine building program that spends $20M rehabilitating East High School — which sits half-empty and has a beautiful new 3-court gymnasium that is 3 feet too short to host OHSAA-sanctioned tournaments; and spends $12M to demolish the historic Champion Middle School and build a new Champion Middle School, though Champion was ranked as the worst middle school in the state of Ohio. Program outputs and rationality go out the window when there is new construction money to spend.

    My daughter went to Indianola K-8, which was a perfectly fine building (though it certainly could have used some upgrades that could easily have been done during the summer). We bounced to two other swing space school buildings while the new Indianola on Weber Road was being prepped. All the movement was extremely disruptive, but of course we did get through it just fine.

    School building allows CCS to point to something new and shiny and “successful,” but it distracts the Board, administrators, teachers, parents and the public from focusing on the school system’s primary mission of educating our children.

    I totally agree. I work in the district and many of us have been trying to figure out how the district is justifying the planned construction of the new Africentric building on the east side. The school is ranked almost dead last in every category the state tracks and a tiny enrollment yet they are going to get a shiny new building? I thought it was hilarious last year when I saw the plans for their new school which includes three gyms, a football field, softball diamond and baseball diamond. They are fielding a baseball team for the first time this year yet they already had plans over a year ago to have a sparkling new building on their campus not to mention their football team quit a game at halftime this season because they had a couple of injuries but not enough players to play the final two quarters of the contest.

    #573527

    News
    Participant

    Record Number Of Students In Ohio Leaving Home Districts For Other Schools
    Monday March 3, 2014 9:03 AM

    AKRON, Ohio – Last year was a record for Ohio public school students moving outside of their home districts as part of the state’s open-enrollment process.

    READ MORE: http://www.10tv.com/content/stories/2014/03/03/oh–schools-open-enrollment.html

    #624193

    News
    Participant

    Columbus Teacher Resigns Following Attendance Scandal
    Tuesday March 4, 2014 6:45 PM

    http://www.10tv.com/content/images/generics/generic-empty-school-classroom.png

    10TV has learned one of four Columbus city schools principals facing termination because an attendance scandal has just submitted his letter of resignation. Christopher Qualls, principal at Independence High School, has resigned.

    READ MORE: http://www.10tv.com/content/stories/2014/03/04/columbus-teacher-resignation.html

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