Sorry that if we split off, it will give you, or anyone else, "the impression" that there are dual systems. Don't know if the SCC8 lawyers want to introduce "impressions" as evidence.
The question I was asking, which you do not respond to, is this: If the number of minority children in muni remains the same ( for whatever reason) after the muni separation, are minority rights still being violated? We certainly are going to have the space and we certainly are going to accept them. If we do, does that make a difference one way or another?
Or is it going to be better for us if we just shut down the borders and only take bona-fide residents of the munis, as Martinez v Bynum gives us the absolute right to do? What is your advice?
I will take the staute at its word that the purpose of creating smaller school districts is to increase efficencies and to promote education innovation. I agree that the state should know the result of any law and of course, they say they do. There is a strong body of study to back up that claim. The statue should still be on line (HB 1288) so it you want to, read it and let me know what you think of its purported purpose.
I didn't see anything in the statue, or its reasoning, that mentions incompetent board members. I agree that would not be a valid justification for the law.
I will let you take up your comments about Homer with her, pardon me if I step out from between you two. My impression of Homer is that she can take care of herself.
I also agree with you on the "At-Large" deal. Certainly better to just let the elected seven, who after all were elected county-wide, soldier on after September 1st. Any attempt to appoint additional members prior to a county-wide election would dilute my vote, and I would have to support a lawsuit claiming my rights were being violated. If the SCC attempted to redraw districts and elect six new members, same thing, my vote is diluted. Far better to just wait until 2014 when all the seats are up for grabs. Then, if the SCC wants to draw 13 new districts countywide to replace the current seven districts, nobody's rights are violated.
If the parents of an unincorporated child want their child to attend a Muni then they will go for it even if they have to carpool or something. As long as there is a legit law allowing that with no troubles, it'll happen as long as the muni's go far the frick out of their way to inform the muni parents of their rights on the issue. I also have a feeling that the suburbs will start annexing (or whatever it is called) before you know it. Bartlett has already but they had that planned out long before the public school(s) debacle.
If the parents of an unincorporated child want their child to attend whatever in God's name MCS morphs into then they can do that as well. Why not? There is a law on the books stating they can. Would anyone in their right mind do that? Probably not, really. But the option is there.
It does not matter the race, ethnicity, religion, gender, or anything else of the unincorporated child in question. That is a ridiculous mode of thought for the year 2013.
I think that this weird argument about the muni's being bigoted is really not even based in anything realistic or concrete at all. It seems like it is just something to be said for the sake of saying it at this point. Maybe it is time to think past that by now since it is the year 2013 and all. I guarantee you that the parents who are positive and proactive with their children's schooling will instinctively do the right thing.
Why is it that this situation is sometimes made out to be based in what various folks deem intolerance anyway? The MCS sucks eggs and there is no way for that to be excused by any means because they did it to themselves. I would love for someone at MCS to take a stand and just plainly speak their peace about things without basically playing the race card in the year 2013.
The statue that you posted does not mandate any attendance of the unincorporated kids. All it does is say they or any other child may enroll at a school outside of their district. In other words, still voluntary.
Whenever there is a sizable, majority number of minority students in a district and the stae allow the district to be split up which , when one looks at the students, one gets the impression that the school is only for whites and the other black, that is a dual district. I know that you will say that is just how the municipals are, housing choices, however, when there is already an integrated district, why would the state pass a law that it knows will result in such a disparity in the enrollment of the schools? They passed the law, so it is assumed that they knew the results of their actions.
The specious reason, mostly given for wanting to split is that the board members are not that bright, they are incompetent, that could fall under the heading of invideous discrimination. It could be construed that since the overwelming majority of students from Memphis are black, the majority of the BOE is black, that they are, somehow inferior to whites.
I didn't go after HomerSimpson. What I did was expose the fact that she, as a teacher, and in a tenous position, is not that knowledgeable of the workings of the higher ups in administration. I stand by that. As far being in a tenous position, that is also true. There is not a great demand for physics only teachers in Shelby County. That, as I learned from high administrators in the district and from members of the board is a fact.
I did not look down on her degree, as a matter of fact, I respect her for her accomplishments. I said and will still say that she knows little or nothing about what transpires in the meetings by the administrators of the unified district.
I always thought that class size was instrumental to a quality education, just like most people. Only until I starting researching it, did I come away convinced that class sizes was not the panecea that I used to think and most people still think. You look, research, learn and evolve. That is what I have done.
The statue that you seem to think is so important is nothing but a statue allowing for kids from one district to go to a school in another district, the same as it always was, except this bill took away the time limit. It is purely voluntary on the parents part and if there is space available and the recieving district accepts those children. That has no bearing on the situation at hand.
Having 6 at large seats on the BOE could not pass constitutional muster, the voting rights act. Such a move would definately dilute the voting power of african americans in Shelby County. I do think that it was struck down in Memphis years ago, when the council tried to make most districts at-large. This was right before it became apparent that african americans would be a sizable, majority of the voters, in Memphis.
You are really confusing me. First you say that resegregation is the issue. Then it really isn't resegregation because the number of minority children does not matter to your position, its the fact that the MSDs are not mandated to accept those unincorporated children. And even if they do what they are allowed to do under 49-6-3014, it still does not matter. That can only mean that even if the school minority populations remain exactly the same, it is still an equal protection violation. Because munis cannot set their own school boundaries without incurring an Equal Protection risk. Unfortunately for that logic, there is that doggone Martinez v. Bynum (Supreme Court) decision that says just the opposite.
And I beg your pardon, but (Lawfully), the only place those children belong is where their parents elect to send them. Regarding children as someone's property ended 150 year ago.
I have never heard of a false fact before, you have outdone yourself.
Sorry, but gifts in cash or kind ( you were referrring to the Bill Gates grant, weren't you?) is a part of that pesky free speech issue. Good luck having a District Judge try and overrule the Supreme Court. Beside, how exactly do you propose ot regulate PTAs, parents, booster clubs and the like? Shall we have some sort of accounting system that equalizes parental involvement? No more bake sales allowed, parents! No more wrapping paper or candy sales, either!
Sorry, weren't you the poster who kept harping that the single most important factor is student achievement was class size? Yep, that was you. Now you want to backtrack on that? Don't you want that world class district?
Not sure who that "them" and "us" those schools might be for. Are the African-American residents of the municipalities who will use our schools "them" or "us" in your eyes? As far as I see we are all Shelby Countians. Perhaps your contention on that "one race" school issue is that our munis are going to be occupied by just one race? You know that is not true.
Can you tell us once again how minority rights might be violated here? You are a bit vague about how any minorities are being harmed.
I do agree with what you say about that 23 member school board. The current seven elected members were elected county-wide, so we should just dismiss the other 16 and let the seven have at it. Why do you want to reintroduce more appointees for these hard decisions?
Your shots at Homer are so far out in left field that it makes you look really bad. Personally, I trust any teacher who works in the schools every day to know one hell of a lot more than you about what is going on. You aren't going to discredit her on that basis. Want to argue that you know more than she, be my guest.
But then, when you cannot offer any intelligent rebuttal to what Homer says, what else can you do?
I can go along with a 13 member board so long as....6 members from Memphis, 1 from unincorporated Shelby and 1 from each Muni. OR all 13 are at large.
Homer: I thank you for answering my question. I'm really not from Tennessee after all, so sometimes I ask rather silly questions. It's worrisome that nary a teacher knows what timeframe grades are to be administered as of right now and that is the kind of thing which should be straightened out really quickly imho.
Arlington Pop: I can't help but put myself in the shoes of a youngster who will be put in the position of having a large student/teacher ratio for one year all out of the blue like then have a much smaller one the next, because some youngsters could get a bit confused by that. It might come across as odd since I did not explain it well earlier. Sorry. I highly doubt there will be an August start up date at all since there are seemingly many things up in the air.
The makeup of any msds, demographically, in any county of the state is already available. All one has to do is look at the last census. Allowing to let children attend msds that live outside of the msd's boundarie doe not alter the picture, for tht is not mandated for the msds to do. This allowance would be at the discretion of the msd and could be stopped at any time. Lawfully, the only place those4 kids belong is with the Unified Shelby County School District.
If a law violates the equal protection laws in one place, it is assumed, by, law to be in violation everywhere.
Spending by the school district is false fact. There would be unequal opportunity for the gifts in kind and cash spent by the municipals on their schools would outstrip the resources available to the unified school district. This imbalance could be stopped by simply not letting the msds happen. A dual school district is one that, when looked at, facially you can determine that one school is for us and one school is for them. The impact, buth socially and physological, has alredy determined that one race schools are detrimental to minorities( Brown v Board of Education), which is still the law of the land. If the actions passed shows that the results would be violative of minorities rights, a court does not have to wait for it to happen, they can be proactive to keep it from ever happening.
Ap, this is for all of the people glamoring that the schools will not be ready on time. Judge Mays listed several things that had to be done in order to merge. Kids had to know what school they are assigned to and how they are going to get there. The schools must be safe, staffed, etc. For the act of physically merging, most of those things are already done. The state sets the studies required. Lesson plans, that is easy You start in the book where it says beginning and you stop where it says end. Of course there will be things that have to be fine tuned, but, that would not preclude the schools from opening on time. There will be a budget. It might not be acceptable to every group concerned, but there will be a budget. As far as class sizes, it is still up in the air whether class sizes are woth the cost. The most respected study done, the STAR Report, commissioned by the state of Tennessee is the one most hang their hat on. It shows that a class reduction of 7 to 8 students to around 15.7 studente per class, in high school, had a result of 3 to 4 months extra achievement. Is that worth the millions extra it cost to keep the class sizes that small? Further, the study shows that reduction in class sizes from 22 to 15 students didn't have any effect on the achievements of white students. the improvements were seen with black student, and tha measured in at about, 3 to 4 %. You can look it up as I know you will. Btw, that 3 to 4% increase was only with elementary kids, from first entering the school at first grade.
For a teacher that teaches physics to be such an authority on school administration is foolish. Regardless of subject matter taught, he/she is still a teacher, subordinated to administration. They follow orders, they don't dictate policy. I see very little credibility in what they say. It is especially hard for me to fathom why a teacher in a limited subject in a limited field would be so important anyway. Physics is a good occupation, however, how many kids in any school district in the U. S. take physics? How many areas in the U. S. is there a need for physics? Houston laid a ton of them off, Florida and Alabama did too. The only ones retained and now making a good living from physics now are the ones that graduated from reknowned schools, with knowledge and experience of running their own programs. I am afraid our physics teacher is not one of those. Even though I appreciate his/her input, I put very little stock into it. That position is a tenous position in any school district, for it is considered an extra, not mandated course, purely voluntary.
My personal belief is that this merger will be complete enough to go forward on the first day of school.
He is sick. He clearly doesn't think there is a difference between a lie and the truth.
Just like many media Perps.
In any case, in the final analysis, it doesn't matter. In either case the lies give way to destruction.
" The premise is that by allowing msds to be formed in the several counties of the state, it would create a dual school system (resegregate) and if that happens, there will be differences in the resources available to the different groups. "
I don't know that what is going to happen in Shelby County can be called a dual school system, if by that you mean a segregated system. Unless by definition, a system can be called resegregated because there are less minority children in the system than before, even if it is one less minority child? Is that the argument?
And if it is, shouldn't we wait until we determine what happens with school minority populations before a lawsuit is filed? After all, the munis are most certainly going to offer, per state law, the unincorporated kids a spot in our schools. Shouldn't we see how many accept before we go to court?
I also don't quite follow the reasoning about the differences in resources being a problem. It didn't seem to be a problem when the City of Memphis provided an extra $2,000 per child in school funding for MCS children while SCS kids didn't get any additional money.
As far as I can tell, every child in Shelby County is going to get the same amount of state and county funding, with the Memphis children getting a larger share of Federal funds. Is the argument that the suburban muncipalites may provide additional funding for their schools (prefectly permissable under state law) and that is a violation of the equal protection clause?
I am also at a loss to explain the presence of the 30 or so MDSs and SSDs already established in the state. Won't those systems have to be declared unconstitutional as well ?
Yes, there is a concerted effort across the board to align curriculum. Most of the work is just about emphasis since the state actually sets the curriculum standards. For instance, for me, there is a big difference in the amount of time spent in one area when you look at MCS vs SCS. They have teachers from both sides of the house working together to align the material so that every one is teaching from the same playbook.
That being said, the BOE still has our hands tied. WE don't know if grades will be administered on a semester basis (SCS) or a full year (MCS). Planning curriculum is difficult when you don't know the answer to that. You don't want to end a semester in the middle of a unit!
Teachers in SCS have the freedom to decide how they administer grades where MCS has weighting standard.
This board continues to kick decisions down the road meaning they are making NO decisions. In some way this could be good because each individual school can make decisions based on what is good for the kids they serve. BUt without policy, parents are more likely to make every issue very continuous.
"Good night, good night! as sweet repose and rest
Come to thy heart as that within my breast!"
Why would that be hard?
What do you mean about remote work being done on a curriculum? What does "remote" mean?Curriculum requirements are set by the state.
The answer to you last question is that, with every day that passes, it looks less likely.
But open they will, regardless of whether they are ready or not.
Here are a few questions...
If there is to be a high student teacher ratio for one year then how will the schoolchildren be able to revert back to a low student teacher ratio when there are munis and all of that? I imagine it would be hard for a student to go from (for example) a 25 student classroom to a 45 student classroom and then back to a 25 student classroom all in the course of one year.
Has there been any remote work done on curriculum by now? Are there going to be uniform standards in place or is everything going to be piecemeal or what? Youngsters are a great deal more intelligent than most adults thinks oftentimes. You folks know darned well that there are some youngsters who are wondering what the deuce is going on by now.
Will there be a fully operational public school system on time? I can't help but wonder this because it seems to me that there won't.
Very sad ending to his life ,Fields became an angy old man who stooped to low tactics in attempt to gain power as a political broker for Memphis, ,once it fail he should have been proscuted in Fedral court anybody else would have , You can do a thousand good things but once you cross that line no one remember those good deeds i hold no ill will towards the man
Thanks homer for bringing the facts to the table.
As I said, the school board has every right to fight over janitors, but in order to pay for them teachers will have to be cut, and the student teacher ratio will go up.
My oldest child's school is adding about 30 open enrollment positions and losing 6 teachers, all to attrition, but they aren't being replaced. This means increased ratios for the students, which is a bad thing for the education experience. Thankfully, it'll only be for one year, and we can get back to making sure our kids have what they need, and Memphis can get back to using their system as a job support system for their community as they wish. The education outcomes won't improve, but that's fine if that's what they want. We can do it our way, and they can do it their way. That's the advantage of not having a single mega district.
OTP I can't decide if you are a habitual liar or a pathological liar. Either way you do it so regularly that I am confident that you know you are doing it. I'm just not sure if you are sick or don't care.
Humes Fog HS is a magnet school in Nashville. They must graduate with a certain number of AP classes. They are #1 in TN and #37 in the US (out of 21,035).
Collierville is ranked #7 in the state in #945 in the US.
WSHS is back on the list in TN. THey are #9 in the state and #1104 in the US.
Houston is #11 in the state and #1132 in the US. They fell this year in the state rankings.
OF those four schools, Houston has the lowest student/teacher ratio. This is due to the fact they were on trimesters. Same reason that Millington took a big cut in teachers. They were forced out of trimesters and that system takes more teachers. COlliervilles was 17:1 and both HF and WSHS are 20:1.
The final criteria for rankings is college readiness measured by AP or IB scores.
HF has 99% participation rate and 71% pass rate (5.3 tests per taker)
CHS has 42% participation rate and 67% pass rate (3.1 tests per taker)
WSHS has 36% participation rate and 73% pass rate (4.1 tests per taker)
HSH has a 33% participation rate and a 76% pass rate (3.3 tests per taker)
Of the top 20 schools in the US, 2 are charters from the same company. Only 3 schools have student/teacher ratios greater than 20:1. 4 from FL, 3 from TX and 2 from CA. The one last interesting fact is that of the top 20 schools, all of them have 100% participation in AP or IB meaning every kid is in advanced curriculum. Even the top school in TN does this. You would think this kind of information would be important to the BOE who is INCREASING CLASS SIZE among all classes - including AP and IB where the recommended size is 18:1. But this damn BOE wants to argue over $12M for janitors and cut 165 teachers. That is the most hypocritical move they have made yet.
I have news for most of you - it will be a miracle if school starts on time.
You are correct OTP that the 23 member board is not representative of the entire county.
The 7 member elected board will be though, once the 7 former SCS and 9 former MCS members roll off.
The 7 elected represent the entire county equally, and any appointments to that board disenfranchise the voters who elected that board. That's the issue Mays is facing right now, and it'll be interesting to hear his take on how an expansion of the board will be allowed to proceed. That's going to play a key role in whether the MSDs and SCS are able to work out a cooperative relationship from the outset. Cooperation would be best for all the students in the county, but we may not get that if the angry, spiteful members are placed on the board.
I, like AP, think the CC8 will keep the civil rights suit alive, since it's the only pawn they still have. They may end up dropping it later if negotiations are completed, but I think they will keep it around a little longer. What I do know for certain is that if that does go to trial, the wedge between the city and it's suburban residents will drive deeper than it has ever been. It will get ugly, and I still think the end result would not prevent MSD formation, just alter enrollment policy, so I truly don't think there is much of anything to be gained from the Memphis side by pursuing the civil rights claim.
Those school rankings was gotten from the NewsWorld Report/education/best schools in the United States.
I appreciate your post, especially since it doesn't include your usual snarky remarks.
The civil rights lawsuit is still applicable, even considering the law has state-wide application. The parameters are the same. The civil rights part of the lawsuit is for alleged violation of the equal protection clause, it was not contingent on whether local and/or statewide. The premise is that by allowing msds to be formed in the several counties of the state, it would create a dual school system (resegregate) and if that happens, there will be differences in the resources available to the different groups. The part of the lawsuit that was directed solely to Shelby County, unconstitutional special legislation has been settled, and that was in favor of the CC. If intent is needed to be shown, the time frame of the quest and subsequent failure of the Norris Law would show intent. Making the law state-wide, only after it was struck down in its original form only buttress that the later law was still made to specifically made for the benefit of Shelby County.
Decisions regarding the merger were made and are still being made by a 23 member quasi, elected and/or appointed board which is and was not truly reflective of the voter's wishes that reside within Shelby County. The impression that I am left with is that an all elected board would give validation to the true wishes of the majority of Shelby County.
Contentious issues like the privatilization of some services should only be made by a fully elected board or appointed people by the entity closest to the people, the Shelby County Commission.
Judge Mays seems to be a middle of the road judge. However, he is still a judge and not a legislator. I don't see his job as legislating the parameters of decisions of the board. It is the boards duty to come up with a budget, it is up to the county commissioners to fund it. If the board sees fit to include within its' budget things that it deem neccessary and the perception is that the county commission is rejecting them because of the historical budget priorties of the old SCS, contrary to the wishes of the majority residents of the entire county, I think, the judge will move to force the county commissioners to fund.
An argument can be made to Judge Mays that the factions representing the state and suburban interest on this unweildly 23 member board are trying to conserve money now, in the hopes of spending it later toward their own proposed msds. It may not wash, but, I believe that it is a viable argument.
As far as the teacher to student ratio, smaller class sizes are always a plus. But, Hume-Fogg High School in the Nashville Metropolitan District is listed at number 38 on the best 500 high schools in the entire U. S. and Williamson County District is listed at 204; they both have around the same teacher to student ration that the Unified District would have if there were no privatizing of services. Btw, I got all the way down that list to over 500 and no Shelby County School had showed up. So, Grove's argument on teacher to student ration, while valid is still suspect.
Lastly, the judges order on this part of the case is over when the merger physically begins. That is one reason why I don't believe there will be a delay. Justice delayed is justice denied. Hell, he knows the same as you and I that anything can be merged in two years, especially when they have the same mission.
I again thank you for being quite civil about this.
Thanks, beeswax. With apologies to the Bard, I've just amended the classic metaphor with a verb construction somewhat more pro-active (and befitting of this forever feisty presence that we just lost) than "shuffle off." I know it's presumptuous; blame my mischievous subconscious.
By Hannah Sayle, Chris Herrington, Chris Shaw, Louis Goggans, Greg Akers and Bruce VanWyngarden
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