Monday, January 27, 2014

SFUSD WANDERS OFF COURSE (WAY OFF)


Today the Vergara trial began but an ultimate outcome may be years away after the appeals process. The case is an important milestone in the quest to reform the teaching profession and to develop teacher quality equity between schools, something that would have an outsize and positive impact on the least successful students.
While we await and hope for an outcome in favor of  a long-overdue change to the way we evaluate, hire and fire teachers, we should take a look at the general policy initiatives of this school district because statutory employment reform is not a cure-all for what ails public education here or anywhere.

SFUSD has defined itself by promoting three goals - diversity, access and equity.  In fact, the SFUSD policy literature always begins with a rededication to these goals. But these three policy goals  remain unfulfilled and few ever ask the question as to why success has eluded the District, especially given the widespread support of the Board and the community.

There's little doubt that SFUSD  remains largely undiversified relative to the demographic diversity of the individual neighborhoods. This disconnect is widely acknowledged by SFUSD itself and, therefore, is not a matter of debate. As for the other two goals, access and equity, they remain alarmingly elusive due to SFUSD's own policies which promote lowered access and inequity. 

Every school will have a unique character reflecting not only the community served but the culture of the staff and the district. But there should be uniformity as well if access and equity are goals. If Central Office policies intend to promote access and equity, differences in the school programs and services should be minimized such that families can reasonably expect to get the same or very similar opportunities both in quantity and quality from one school to another. But we know that isn't the case. SFUSD has spent years creating a school district with widely disparate offerings  - schools with honors or music or foreign language programs and schools without them. Schools from K to 8. Schools from K to 5. Schools with after school sports and schools without them. Schools with a range of co-curricular activities and clubs and schools with few. Alternative schools, bilingual schools, small schools, magnet schools, academic merit schools, art schools, schools with counselors, schools with parent liaisons, school with computer labs... And now they complain about equity?

For some, particularly those who attend their preferred schools, these differences are considered a strength of SFUSD, but from an equity point of view it is hard to make a case that such fundamental differences between schools are consistent with that goal. The prevalence of school options increases choice, to be sure, but choice is only partially defined by the number of offerings. More importantly, it is defined  by the  ability to access those offerings, for what good is choice if you can't get any?

SFUSD has a long standing problem of applicant oversubscription and that inability for families to receive school placement choices has fueled the long-term exodus from San Francisco and/or its public schools. (By the way, few applicants are really satisfied with their third  or fourth choice let alone their tenth, making suspect SFUSD's optimistic measure of placement success.)

All this constitutes the backdrop by which to analyze and evaluate this district in its ability to "make diversity,  access and equity a reality" (their words, not mine). Just as schools must evaluate teacher effectiveness for the betterment of student achievement so the public must evaluate district effectiveness for the sake of the same.
But any way you cut it, SFUSD fails dismally to achieve the three goals, and that is so because its policies are contradictory to those very same goals. You can't create diversity through the artifices of lottery-based student assignment, a point which I believe has been demonstrated repeatedly with one failed SAS followed by another. We've seen years of diversity-inspired assignment systems and SFUSD remains undiversified in relative terms.

And equity and access will never see the light of day as long as resourced families are allowed leave their neighborhoods for higher demand schools. If the District wants access and equity it has to provide it at each and every school.  It has to make the offerings universal, not a hodge-podge with widely varying opportunities.  The model of moving the pieces around the chess board has not resulted in higher overall student achievement. It has resulted in the opposite - greater disparity in student achievement. Modern day public schools need the resources of the communities and that means moving to a neighborhood-centric model where people come together in public-private partnerships.
SFUSD  has failed to realize diversity, access and equity for one simple reason: it has strayed from the practical and historical mission of public education which is to raise student achievement. This is achieved through universal school attributes - quality teaching and instructional practices, relevant, engaging curriculum, as well as a full range of enrichment classes and other programmatic offerings and services. That is to say, it shouldn't matter where one attends school in order to receive a high quality education. 

It isn't lost on me that the elected  Board members and their administrators rarely speak of achievement  but speak incessantly of diversity, access and equity - platitudes that are little more than political props short of clear policies to promote them.  To this day the stated goal of the SAS is to promote diversity even though it is doing just the opposite. The leadership tells us lack of educational opportunity is the greatest civil rights issue of our time. If it is why  do they make every school different from one another and then proclaim lack of access and equity? Why do they keep blaming the middle class for lack of diversity when they can't get low income applicants to use the CTIP preference? Why one failed assignment system after another?

Our elected representatives on the Board and their administration have not come out publicly in favor of Vergara V. California , despite having done the right thing in imposing some restrictions on lay-offs at-hard-to- staff schools. As the largest inequity of all - the lack of effective teachers at underperforming schools, a true civil rights issue, the Board needs to go much further to fundamentality change seniority and LIFO to bring about the changes implicit in access and equity. The mighty axe of the union stands high in the air and ready to strike down the tenure of any Board members who take any union opposition too far.

 
 
 

73 comments:

AB said...

"SFUSD failed dismally to promote the three goals, and that is so because its policies are in contradiction to the goals." SFUSD also fails to follow its own policies: there are K classes with 23 enrolled students in direct contravention to the 22 limit, students have been offered placement into classes ahead of students on spring transfer waitlists, classes with fewer than 22 students have not been filled from spring transfer, speak with three counselors at EPC and you are likely to get four different stories about these discrepancies.

It's no secret that SFUSD relies on parents to fund many of the programs you would normally expect to see in every school. If it weren't for PTA/PTO fundraising there would be even fewer art, music, language, library, and technology programs. This 'differentiation' creates competition to attract potential donor families to apply to a school - go on any school tour and see how much emphasis is put on the 'extras' funded by parents. You cannot blame individual families for seeking the most resourced program and doing what they can to improve the educational experience for their child(ren) but you can and should be angry at and blame a district that created and supports an environment of unequal distribution of resources.

SFUSD is more than off course - it needs a new one.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Don that the individuals who are of means and have money and are on the Eastern side, using the lottery to get into West Side schools with the full knowledge that the system was intended to encourage diversity, are largely to blame. If people don't follow the spirit of a law and look for loopholes, this is what happens. The truth is, there wouldn't be many families not getting into a school at least close to home without this treacherous action on the part of the moneyed families from the East Side, because the poor are not, by choice, taking those spots, and the schools on the East side would be more diverse.

SFUSD is also controlled entirely by the union. I've been to political meetings expecting a vigorous debate on why we aren't closing the achievement gap, for instance the Latino Democratic Club meeting in 2013, and seen an orchestrated kiss up to the union. This is what needs to change. We need to challenge the union and implement policies which help all children and pay the best teachers more to teach at the most disadvantaged schools. Vergara and this proposition are both steps in the right direction.

Don Krause said...

I can't remember if I mentioned this before, but last summer Carranza spoke at a leadership conference. I watched the speech on Youtube. Not that it was a good speech, but it fascinated me to watch the Superintendent of a major school district speak about education for a whole hour without every discussing student achievement. He talked about how a Latino boy from Texas was flamed on twitter for singing the Star Spangled Banner at some sporting event and that was an example of why we need to focus our resources here in SFUSD on race relations. I kid you not. Watch it yourself.

These leaders are obsessed with race. They have a racialist worldview. In the meantime, teachers are slugging it out in hard-to-staff schools where they can be laid off at any time due to LIFO which Carranza supports because he's a union lackey consistent with hardened leftist ideology. You won't see Richard Carranza testifying about the deleterious effects of the five employment statutes on student achievement. He's politician above all, a party-line guy who talks about kids, but makes policy decisions for the benefit of the ed establishment's continued status quo by portraying himself as a social justice/civil rights zealot. His policies are made possible by appealing to historical American racism and fear.

AB, I know there are many issues at SFUSD and thank you for mentioning them. I also agree that parents should not be blamed for looking out for their children by seeking the best schools. This is the system set up by SFUSD. It's a mix between a dog race and a dog show. Pedigree schools, hours of training, gridlock and competition

Don Krause said...

I rewrote my post to clean it up a bit. The original post was written hastily. It happens.

Anonymous said...

I think you can blame these parents as it's dishonest. The fact is not many of low income are interested in going west, so if the parents who have high incomes and live in areas with few whites or middle class in the school went to those schools and donated the money they would spend driving across town to fund a bus to take only truly poor kids west, we could achieve diversity.

It is intellectually dishonest to say you support the lottery due to diversity and liberalism, have good income, live in an area where the school has few whites, and use the lottery to go to a richer, whiter school you can afford to drive to and others cannot. You are undermining the system, talking about integration but causing segregation.

It's intellectually dishonest.

Don Krause said...

3:01, you think it's dishonest and immoral not to help create diversity, but it is OK not to be part of the solution if you have to commute to do it?

These white people in the SE who you call "intellectually dishonest" are simply going through the process of the lottery that was set up by SFUSD. If they win they therefore are corrupt? What I think you are trying to say is that they shouldn't go through that process to the extent of writing in more than just their neighborhood school because, if I have this right, they ought to have high enough morals to "do the right thing" and send their kids to schools they would otherwise reject. So the assignment system really has nothing to do with it because anyone can get a seat in a low demand school. You simply think that the 10% of white families should send their kids to diverse schools even if they win the lottery at a preferred school. By that logic, any white person who doesn't do that is intellectually dishonest, unless they have to commute to do that, as in your case. In other words, you believe that between commuting and diversifying, diversifying does less moral good.

Anonymous said...

I don't think they should have the switch algorithm. No one from outside Alamo's district should displace anyone in it. I also believe you could let everyone in the neighborhood in and have 20% left over. Those spots should only go to the poor. It probably wouldn't work for Clarendon, Grattan, and a few others, but I believe that you could guarantee everyone a school within 1.5 miles and have schools more diverse than they are now by not giving spots to upper income whites and Asiand if they displace a neighorhood resident, and make the East schools more diverse by having them go there, which will over time make them better.

Whites are 13%, and the real number is close to 20 as half whites almost exclusively say the other group and most DS are white, plus many ONW are mixed or white, but that's another story. It's really about class, not race, but in SFUSD's mindset, it's all race, pure race, every minute, every second.

Anonymous said...

I've never understood why the policymakers have goals they cannot fulfill. It seems terribly idealistic and childish. It wouldn't be OK to run a school that way so why is it OK to run the whole district that way?

Anonymous said...

Agreed. Matt Haney has come to the same conclusion.

Anonymous said...

Why do you come to that conclusion? Has he proposed some changes to the placement system? I haven't heard anything.

Anonymous said...

He hasn't, but he says it's not worth it. One can hope. Read the article:

http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/a-hunger-games-for-parents-in-san-francisco/Content?oid=2648935

Anonymous said...

Thank you. I see what you mean.

Don Krause said...

Did anyone check out Forum on KQED this morning? They had the two lead attorneys in the Vergara case. I thought the Plaintiff attorney, Boutrous, did a far better job.

Anonymous said...

Matt Haney isn't going against the union. He's a political animal.

Anonymous said...

He'll back away from the assignment system once the other dyed- in-the-wool libs on the board set him straight about the party line and solidarity. He doesn't have the balls!

Anonymous said...

We'll see. I don't think he'd speak to the Examiner that way without talking to others first. Opinion is coming around. If it went on the ballot again, it would win. It only lost by 0.08%, based on lies.

Don Krause said...

Matt Haney is not going to do anything about student assignment. If he plans to do something, what is he waiting for? I know it's sour grapes, but I agree with 10:05. I think he made those comments off the cuff.

If he really wanted to stir the pot he'd have continued to do so and at the Chronicle - see the reaction by the public before he proposed something drastic.

The irony is that just fiddling with the order of preferences could make a big difference - depending on what and how those preferences are changed.

Anonymous said...

True, eliminating the switch algorithm and a slight change could at least guarantee people get something in their general area. For instance, if you could guarantee someone something within 2 miles, at least it wouldn't be life ruining to some.

AB said...

SF Public Press is running a good series entitled SPECIAL REPORT: EDUCATION INEQUALITY. The current installment can be found at: http://sfpublicpress.org/news/2014-02/how-budget-cuts-and-PTA-fundraising-undermined-equity-in-san-francisco-public-schools


The articles paint a stark contrast between the haves and have-nots - top 10 fundraising schools raise the same amount as the remaining 61 is just one of the interesting statistics.

Don Krause said...

Hey AB,

I posted a comment on that article you recommended. Thanks.

By the way, a group of people are meeting at the Zephyr Café on Balboa at 37th? at 6:30pm to discuss formation of some kind of education group. Not exactly sure of the plan. I just thought I'd check it out. Anyone interested is invited, but be forewarned- this is not a status quo type crowd.

AB said...

Will check back when their comment feed is working again. Just saw the messages - sorry I missed the event.

Anonymous said...

AB, we'll meet again on the 19th, probably same place, at 6, hope you can make it.

Don Krause said...

I read that article on Free Press. I really took exception with a lot of the ideas, though they might seem reasonable at first glance. So far the author has not responded. He claims it is a data-driven article. LOL

Anonymous said...

It's not data-driven it's EVIL-DRIVEN! Some schools have rich PTAs donating millions while others have parents with 3 jobs being evicted like they have no humanity or value. So they get nothing. That article proves evil. And you come on here and insult the union. How about doing something about the selfish evil PTAs which cause some children to have double what others have? Making teachers second class citizens horrified of being fired and ruined, huddling in the corner, will do nothing to help children. It's just a sick fantasy of men so pathetic they don't have a woman in their life and want to humiliate others for SNM sick fantasies. Phooey!

Anonymous said...

Phooey, even after accounting for PTSAs, the SZ schools have WAY more money than the "trophy schools". Have you actually studied this or are just just going loony again?

AB said...

Data driven, but only telling a small piece of the story.

Like Don points out - the per student expenditure is uneven. the question is how do we, as a district, re-balance spending while providing support services for kids who need them.

Don, I'll see you on the 19th.

Don Krause said...

Facts... as if facts make any difference to Phooey


1. Mission High School receives $9,167 per student from the district while Lincoln gets $5,611.


2. Serra gets $1,730,400 for 282 students while Grattan gets $1,692, 728, for 390 students. Per pupil JS gets $6,136 and Grattan gets 4,340. The amount of private money at Grattan only reduces the extra Serra gets by half.

Anonymous said...

Don, what about what's happening inside their homes? Can they afford books? Meals? Are they malnourished or do they do drugs? What about one having parents who have 3 jobs and still have to sell marijuana and risk arrest or submit themselves to greedy, historically racist and hateful, malodorous caucasian man on backpage who are physically unimpressive and rude and hate women so they have to pay to humiliate them because these women are broke and sad and feel sorry for their children and don't want them to suffer what they did? And what if they end up in foster care? And are molested? There's no dollar amount to a child who has 2 parents who take them fishing and on trips and buy them books and buy them Kumon and Sylvan classes and spend lots of time with them and see them in the play and pay for tutors and lessons and activities and psychologists and doctors and gifts, and huddled, humiliated, embarassed kids who have never met their father, have been shot at, and get yelled at by their mother who feels constantly humiliated due to her station in life, due to racism and sexism. You can't measure that, Don, but if you don't think it's a factor you're blind, crazy, racist, sexist and indifferent, not to mention sadistic and rude, AND MEAN! You ought to be ashamed of yourself. Phooey!

Anonymous said...

Phooey, are you saying per school spending should try to somehow make up for the difference between good and bad, or rich and poor, parents? What about people in private school? People of modest or moderate success who choose to have kids in public school are at least encouraging integration, fundraising and an opportunity for struggling children to learn from those who are thriving how to study well. Why shouldn't private school and people who move to Orinda be part of the equation? Are you saying SFUSD should give less money to Alamo because fewer of the parents are single, pot-dealers, or part-time escorts or sugar babies, or bookies (I know there are some bookie parents, should that humiliation and risk of being a Chinese/Russian Mafia Bookie give us more money to distribute?)? I don't think your points are very practical in terms of public policy. I don't think SFUSD is responsible for all of society's ills any more than for all the Bay Area's homeless, though we tend to waste money on a lot of homeless from suburbs who move here because we are generous. I don't see a way to make this work.

Don Krause said...

Good points!

My retorts to the Free Press article have to do with reportage. Should the author get away with misreporting the facts of school budgets? Administrators know their budgets. They know that schools get very uneven funding from the district and that the schools with the most PTA funding typically get the least from the district and that the donated money doesn't even come close to filling the gap. And I say this knowing that some schools need more to educate their students. But that doesn't mean we should go around spreading lies about the funding they get and painting the picture upside down. I believe this isn't just a mistake or bad reporting. It is a concerted effort to spread falsehoods about education funding so the District will have more support to further polarize the budget picture. Remember, they have one purpose only - to lower the achievement gap and if they can get away with crippling higher performing schools and get even mediocre top moderate results in poor schools they will parade out the lowered achievement gap as a giant success. They did this with SIG and that wasn't a success at all. But no one will call them on it - especially with reporting like that of Jeremy Smith.

The larger issue has to do with how to fairly distribute state funding. I believe that there should be a per pupil minimum to ensure that poor achievement isn't an bottomless drain on every other school. There is no saying that you will have more successful schools if you put all the education budget into low performing ones by entirely defunding the successful ones, as an illustration.

Why should one child have to forego small class sizes or other services because other students don't succeed even after piling on extra services? (See School Improvement Grant post) We double per pupil spending at some schools and have very little to show for it.

This is a Constitutional question about equal opportunity. It is one thing to provide extra help and another thing to do so without any sense of moderation and thoughtfulness for those that have to pay for others with their education dollars. Every kid deserves a decent level of service.

Don Krause said...

I deleted 2 of Phooey's typically obscene comments and a response to them. If she can't be civil thean she can't comment here. I weep for those children that have her as a teacher.

Here is a comment from today's testimony in the Vergara case:

When asked about the notion that teachers have little or no impact on the performance of students with out-of-classroom challenges such as poverty and crime, Ms. Pulley made her position clear saying, "I think that's pretty absurd. I strongly disagree with that statement. If that were the case then I think academic achievement would be 100% correlated with a student's background, and no student growing up in poverty or with adverse conditions would be able to succeed, and that's not the case. I mean in my own school, at Larchmont, we had amazing gains with students who were living in poverty, coming in with English not as their first language, not ideal family situations. And, we got them to a point where they were achieving just as well as any other student. And there are other schools--all over the city, all over the state--that are doing amazing things with students who come from a less than ideal background. So, I reject that completely.”

Anonymous said...

I really don't understand Phooey's point. She's all over the place. Also, what does an ideal background mean?

Anonymous said...

Who cares? The woman is a psycho. Not fit to work in the classroom.

Anonymous said...

I just don't see how the government can deal with all the issues Phooey complains about. Isn't this post about what SFUSD should be doing?

Anonymous said...

Don, you censored my poem. You said not to copy off socialist web sites. I wrote it myself. You broke your own rule. You shouldn't have censored my poem. It was so beautiful. I think you are similar to Tom Cruise in that you cannot handle the truth. Phooey.

Don Krause said...

You are, despite everything, free to comment. But we don't do poetry here at SF EdBlog. Besides, I was doing you a favor.

Anonymous said...

Yes Don, you are doing me a wonderful favor by censoring my beautiful poem which took me hours to write and trying to make it so I have no protections and can be fired at will. We all know how wonderful it was for teachers to not be unionized before and factory workers to work 80 hour weeks as children for starvation wages. That was just great! You sure know your history.

You do me a great favor by creating a blog dedicated to organizing people to fight for Vergara and Davis so that I can be fired at will, forced to come to work when vomiting, and have to follow asinine rules and reform movements created by billionaires with kids in private schools who know nothing about education and have no professional expertise. I have heard all about these two threats to our way of life from our leadership and in our newsletters and my comrades and I have discussed them at length.

You also do me such a favor by constantly saying I'm a bad teacher when you don't know me and all my hard work and sacrifice and trying to get posters like AB to show up at meetings designed to make it so I can be easily fired and all of us can be abused like buspeople in restaurants. If I know where the meeting is I will probably get so sick seeing the lot of you that I will vomit on your espresso and sandwich you insidious hateful anti-comeraderie fools, if it is at a cafe which allows people who are not wearing designer clothes! I know where Zephyr is. "Cafe Fascist"!

You also do me a wonderful favor completely ignoring the abusive home lives these children lead and not allowing me to even mention the parts based on domineering and perversion of the rich and the humiliation and pushing a storyline that their poor test scores are all my fault, not racism, not their parents, not funding, just teachers' who according to you should have their lives ruined by being fired.

Couldn't rich people say, I have enough, I'll be faithful to my wife, you don't have to sexually humiliate yourself for rent money for your children, I'll give you thousands of dollars which is chumpchange to me just out of the goodness of my heart and in the spirit of social justice, and you can be free to do what you choose and not submit to my sick whims, here's money because I care as a human and your children need it, or at the very least take a shower first. You have no idea the stories I have heard, no idea! This stuff runs San Francisco, or should I say San Fransicko! You and your Pacific Heights friend!

Every post is about blaming teachers, stripping us of our rights, cutting our pay, and insulting the hard work we do.

I'll tell you what Don, don't do me any more favors!

Phooey!

Don Krause said...

Look, it's bad enough that you write this sick shit in pros form. But to put to verse? I'll have no part of that!

Anonymous said...

Phooey, you make good points. You should be allowed to express yourself in poems or regular essays. Censorship is not good on blogs, and free speech is. I feel your pain as I too have been censored on other blogs, for instance the sf k files is very bad about censorship. Don has a bit of an "it's my way or the high way" approach to reform which has not organized a significant, consistent number of people in a coherent, goal-oriented way in the past, and hopes to organize movements in the future but I think he imagines that in the future the people he recruits will be better than I feel is realistic, and based on waiting for the perfect combination of honest, diligent, intelligent, and very well-informed people to emerge, he can make tremendous change in our educational system in the future. So this is the challenge, can you organize people as they exist with all their imperfections? Or if you wait for a better group, will it emerge and prosper and make a real difference? I do admire the way the union is "a union", i.e. unified, and works together, even if they disagree about some things. Even some who strongly disagree still contribute money to the cause. That part is beautiful and morally admirable.

I would support the union if you put children first. I even support significantly higher teacher pay. I just can't support seniority and tenure. I've been at meetings where you members of the union defend every bad teacher as a noble, liberal cause and it just ain't so Joe. Some teachers take days off when they aren't sick, clock watch, or just don't teach well. Most are good, I agree, most are underpaid, but when you say LIFO forever and no teacher should be fired without huge costs, you lose me, because children are the most important thing. Shirley Temple dying and the beauty she imparted to the world as an innocent child was really moving. Children are our future! I respect your dedication to teachers who are honestly trying their absolute best, but I disagree that it is OK and no big deal if people call in sick when they are not, or focus more on personal things than actual education. Education is the only way these kids will get out of poverty, in the real world. We can fantasize about a revolution but it is doubtful, and even if we move significantly to the left, it won't mean a kid with terrible grades and no skills will make more money. 1995-2000 was great for the poor, but there were still millions of people who couldn't take advantage of it, there were homeless people in this era.

You are right to focus on the disadvantages these kids suffer, but the goal should be to help them overcome them and create a way to help them get higher test scores and study more. You have to take it for granted their parents are bad and try to make up for it in a goal-oriented, focused way based on statistical results.

We should have much higher taxes on the rich and redistribution, but that won't put an end to subservience. Maybe raising minimum wage and taxes on the rich and having more payments to the poor in the form of the earned income tax credit will. However, we need this to translate to results in the classroom and on the tests. Many upper middle class kids do horrible in school, worse than poor Asians. I think you focus too much on a few instances of suffering, no one is forced to service a millionaire, and most choose not to, that's not the big problem here. The big problem is getting kids to believe in themselves, truly believe in themselves, and truly give their best effort. It all comes down to hours studied per week and institutional support. These are the facts, and they are undisputed.

Anonymous said...

The preponderance of profligacy and combative relations are not limited to our basic lack of self-control. We have become accustomed to a basic lack of courtesy and acceptance. Thomas Jefferson once said we ought to let all laws automatically expire after 19 years so as not to permit a previous generation to make rules for a future generation. I belive strongly this is the case with this seniority concern. I have conversed with several professionals, and I do respect teachers as professionals who ought be consulted pertaining to all such issues of substantive change, and their defense of seniority and tenure is always based on something from the wobegone past and a brief mention of a hypothetical nefarious principal who would wickedly terminate random teachers and create an evil feifdom to abuse teachers. In short, the explanation ranges from the expired to the paranoid with no resemlence of reasonable future concentrations.

My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.
Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death. Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it.


Anonymous said...

You know Don, as I wake up at the crack of dawn while it's still dark outside as you sit around all day doing nothing in Pacific Heights clipping coupons for your dividends, I must say, it was very unfair. I wrote a poem and you censored it. I didn't save it. Then you said I could write it again and I spent an hour on it. Then you posted that what I wrote was horrible and you'd remove it if it was in verse, but not in prose, which you mis-spelled as pros. Then you pompously call me a socialist. And refer to my poem as disgusting. All I want is fair treatment for hard working people who teach children. If you knew the history of how it was for us before we had a union you would think again, that's for sure. I finally went to sleep and hadn't finished my poem, but you said before that I could write it if I didn't take it from another site. I write poems for those sites sometimes. I am an accomplished poet and have been published in magazines more than once for my poetry. It has been complimented by reviewers far more knowledgeable about poetry than you. It has been called beautiful. It is snooty of you to deride it and unfair to censor it, then say I can post it, then censor your own post so there is no record, and then say you will delete it and that it was disgusting.

There was nothing disgusting about my poem. It was clean and about working people fighting together against abuse and preferring love, respect and togetherness to hateful mean division and blaming others for their problems. And I don't state anything disgusting for my own pleasure as you well know but as a means of enlightening readers as to the common abuses perpetrated by rich white men of privelege in neighborhoods such as Pacific Heights, but so many others, so sad for the victims who are then expected to learn at the same pace as children with every advantage in the world like yours.

Phooey!

Don Krause said...

You complain about my deletions but I wouldn't have to delete anything if you showed a little self-control and edited your own emotional outbursts. I'm not your editor. You've written so many inappropriate comments on this blog that you've lost the benefit of the doubt. I can't spend my time saying this stays and this goes when I have to read long passages.

Some of the stuff you write is far outside the kind of conversation acceptable on an education blog. I find myself having to wade through large amounts of text in order to moderate your posts and ensure that this doesn't become a sex chat site. I shouldn't have to do that and I won't. If you have to be obscene to make a point maybe you are not on the right blog. I do allow all points of view, but that doesn't mean I allow anything to be posted, regardless of what anyone thinks is censorship, correctly or incorrectly.

I be damned if I will spend my time sorting through your comments to decide what stays and what goes or have you correct my typos or mistaken spelling while you spew filth and hatred.

I want opposing points of view on this blog. Ostracizing your opponent is a political tool and doesn't cut in for meaningful and intelligent dialogue.



AB said...

Did you listen to the KQED Forum piece today? Archived audio is at: http://www.kqed.org/a/forum/R201402140900

Don Krause said...

Thank you for sending me that link. I responded in their comments section.

Anonymous said...

Amy Chua is a great American and a hero to the working people of El Cerrito. She proves that you can't simply blame poverty. It's no different from blaming the weather, blaming society, blaming immigrants, blaming the Jews. Stop finding a scapegoat. Look in the mirror and fix it. The union believes poverty is to blame and a very high minimum wage is the only solution. I believe it won't translate into test scores. Studies have shown African American kids with parents of very high income but little education don't do well in school, such as kids of police. Income doesn't translate into a good SAT Score. Hours studying does. These are the facts, and they are undisputed!

Anonymous said...

Great American my ass. She doesn't want to unite us. She wants to divide us. She wants to encourage parents to say, don't worry about racism and hatred and mass incarceration of African American males and drug selling by the CIA and sexual slavery and abuse of the abandoned mothers of these kids whose fathers have been unjustly imprisoned by the millions and hatred and anger and genocide. Just ignore it, go to the library, be in a bubble, and sutdy hard like a slave and get your blood wages by looking the other way, selling out completely against other minorities, and making a few bucks.

She completely ignores the devastating effects of racism and poverty. She is a vicious, hateful and evil person and she and her husband who seemd to not care a wit that 6 million of his people were viciously murdered due to racism. She is a disgraceful person and so is he.

We shouldn't ridicule those who don't do well on tests perpetrated by the racist white man. We should uplift them. The SAT should be banned as a racist anachronism. And Chua and Rubenfeld can both go to hell in a hand basket. Phooey!

Anonymous said...

Phooey, I could understand your saying it's wrong if it were a path unavailable to most, but she proves it is a means to success for any who choose it. She said Sonia Sotomayor and Barack Obama followed it. She's sharing a way to eliminate poverty. Most poverty is caused by habits, single motherhood, drugs, TV, lack of studying, inability to keep a job long-term, etc. Some is caused by past racism which we can't control, but that Nigerian Americans earn more than whites proves race is not a glass or cement barrier, more of a paper barrier. Any child who studies 25 hours a week hard and doesn't have disabilities will thrive, in fact most with disabilities will ultimately thrive. It can't hurt to try. When I go to San Bruno Avenue and see a Portola library full of Asian Americans and see a park nearby with Asians and African Americans and others, whites, Latinos, the African Americans there aren't rebelling, they aren't huddling in fear of gunshots, they're choosing to hang out and relax, which is fun, rather than sit in a library, which isn't fun. It's a short-term choice in a nation in which long-term goals lead to success.

Anonymous said...

The preponderance of endemic conflict in the annals of our natural tendencies is both disturbing and enlightening. These lesser yearnings of our ingarrulous and contemptuous natures fails to be inspirational in the least. One must humor oneself. If others do not grin, it is not the humor that is lacking; it is the understanding. Intelligence is the bedrock of all progress. When the tribal chiefs were conferring in the woody hills, they never failed to consider the children, the future tribal chiefs. They also had their mirth, and it was welcome.

Anonymous said...

I just have one question. What?

Anonymous said...

What you laypeople consistently fail to comprehend is that your very ignorance and lack of awareness is why nothing ever changes. In layman's terms: stop bickering, do something about it, laugh a little and prioritize pupils in your society. Perhaps if you teach them better we won't have this incredible ignorance in perpetuity.

Anonymous said...

We're laypeople in terms of what? Usually when you refer to others as laypeople you mean you have some specialized education or knowledge, such as lawyers call nonlawyers laypeople, or psychiatrists, or scientists, of doctors.

You've never told us, what is your expertise? Do you have a PhD in education?

Also, laypeople generally refers to knowing specialized jargon pertaining to a specific field. You just use a lot of big words and philosophical language. What is it that you feel you have expertise in that we don't? You sound like you have a PhD from Oxford or Cambridge, but I still don't know what you mean when you refer to the rest of us as "laypeople"?

Anonymous said...

Between Phooey's crazy, off-topic, and repetitive rants and Mr./Ms. I'll use fancy words ad nauseam (that's as fancy as I'll be), I don't know who is more off-putting.

Anonymous said...

Yeah!

Anonymous said...

AB, you're too picky. I think some people don't realize how difficult it is to run a huge bureaucracy. What if they can accomodate by letting 23 in a class for 22? Let someone not drive across town, it's a good thing. Someone will be sick most days. I think they should go up to 24 early because often within 2 months, 2 people leave and then they don't replace, so they might as well let more in to start. I think they waste enough time with bureaucracy. Look how hard it is to fire a bad teacher. We shouldn't insist they do everything by the book or they'll do nothing but return calls and fill out paperwork. We need them to teach.

Don Krause said...

I've totally lost track of this conversation. It makes no sense to me. My new moderation policy is to just let it go and I will only delete what I think is negligent to allow to remain - that is really unacceptable speech. Other than that you "laypeople" can knock yourselves out. Haiku is OK, too.

Anonymous said...

At ldc meeting. The union is running the show. They want to annoint the next member.

Anonymous said...

Here's what I think of the UESF choosing the next board member. We'd love to, for free, out of the goodness of our hearts, help mentor a Latino to be on the board and help our children. And negotiate with an adult interest group on issues which benefit adults at the expense of children, like seniority.

It reminds me of the part in 'Animal Farm' when the dog has puppies and the pigs under Napolean say, we will take care of the rearing and education of your puppies Bluebell, for the good of all comrades. Then a few months later when everyone had forgotten, Napolean stormed in with 8 huge, vicious dogs, who killed any animal who dared argue.

Shame on us if we fall for that!

Anonymous said...

Don I heard about your little defamatory tirade against Ken last night under the guise of a "question" and if you think you're going to get away with it you're crazy! We will never forget what you said! In front of innocent oppressed people who don't understand what we have endured! Especially if you think you'll ever lead some sort of movement against Carranza, a truly wonderful and knowledgeable and effective man who deeply cares, unlike you. You're mud! We sacrifice our lives to educate children. Anti-teacher rhetoric today is no different than anti-woman, anti-black, anti-gay, anti-semitic energy of the past, and will be seen by history as such, it is truly despicable! We are your humble scapegoat. We are 6,000 strong and oppressed by the ignorant and privileged alike, sound familiar? You ought to be ashamed of yourself! Phooey!

Anonymous said...

Phooey that wasn't Don and I was very polite. I simply asked a question. If the union grooms candidates and helps them win, basically controlling who joins the school board, is this a conflict of interest when they have to negotiate with the union over seniority, due process, pay, merit pay, sick leave, work rules and a myriad of other issues. Shouldn't they have to put students first in this situation? How can they if an adult interest group is who they owe their job to? How is this any different from Cheney having once been CEO of Haliburton and giving them no-bid contracts? It's really the same thing, and I'm sure you were railing against that along with the rest of the left, and rightfully so, even if you were for the war the deals weren't good for taxpayers. In this case, we need a deal which is good for students.

Anonymous said...

Board members are who we rely on to negotiate such a deal. How is that not a confliect of interest?

Anonymous said...

AB, our meeting will be on the 26th at Cafe Promenade 38th and Geary, formerly Cafe Zephyr, across from the Balboa Theater. Please come. It will start at 6:30 but I'll try to be there by 6. There will be about ten of us.

Phooey, if you come and argue I will call the police. We do not agree with you!

Don Krause said...

4:09,

Please don't use this blog to threaten Phooey or anyone else.

Also, it is not a bulletin board to be used to announce events. If you want to do so you must ask first. It isn't your personal site to advertise. Don't do it again.

And, Phooey, I did not attend the Latino Democratic Club meeting. I don't know where you got this idea.



Anonymous said...

Don, I apologize. AB wanted to come to a meeting so I wanted to make sure AB knew where and when it was as I feel AB is very knowledgeable and I'd like to meet AB. I understand. Phooey, Don was not at that meeting, I was.

AB said...

My point on the number of kids in specific classes is to illustrate that SFUSD does not follow its own policies and procedures. Besides a class where they let a 23rd in outside the waitpool process (kid had no tie-breakers and was not on wait pool) there is a class in a different school that has 21 in the class and none of the spring transfers were added to the class and an applicant currently not enrolled was told there was no space after spring transfer dissolved - the class is still at 21 which hurts funding to the school. My experience with EPC has been that, in addition to the right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing, the fingers on each hand are equally ignorant and confused - three counselors gave three conflicting responses to a specific procedure question.

Anonymous said...

True, sometimes it seems a teacher discourages adding the 22d student. It isn't good for the school, agreed, and shouldn't happen.

Don Krause said...

AB,

No doubt the complexities of the assignment system as well as a lack of qualified and well-trained EPC personnel results in much confusion on the part of applicants. I know what you're talking about having had the same experiences when applying over the years. Some of these counselors had no idea what they were talking about. But that was then and it is possible that its improved since then. I wouldn't know.

As far as SFUSD not following its own procedures,- no big surprise there. The squeaky wheel will achieve success largely on the basis of the ability to advocate knowledgably and rules won't prevent it unless they want it to(or not).

I do believe that additions to student body after the early head count do not result in increased WSF funding to a school. There is no addition cost for personnel. Increased funding per ADA is districtwide and moving the pieces around different schools does not change total base, supplemental or concentration grant funding to a district which determines site allocations.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry I won't be coming to your silly cafe meeting. I've heard of these before and I've been around a long time. All of you greedy stupid rich white guys can sit around bragging about your vacation homes and new cars and new wives while your ex wife cries and poor chldren suffer in underfunded schools across America and circle **** to the idea of one day firing a bunch of teachers and getting off on the sad look on their face and their humiliation. It will NEVER HAPPEN! LIFO FOREVER! 'Waiting for Superman' was 4 years ago. Nothing has happened and nothing ever will. You dweebs make me laugh. Time wasting NERDS! I don't have to show up and won't, I'd get sick at the sight of you. My husband is ten times the man any of you are. I wouldn't breath the same air as you chumps. That cafe sucks anyways. I remember a group back in the '70s talking about this, passing out fliers in Noe Valley. Some people enjoy futility. I'd rather watch a good movie with my husband than argue with a bunch of idiots who will never accomplish anything. So don't bother calling the police, save your cell phone minutes to talk to Bubbles or Candy in Ohio at 1-800-fantasy. Maybe you could tell her to play a teacher you fired, tell her that's your fetish, it's your money, she'll do it! It will always be a fantasy and you'll never fire any of us. Viva Carranza! Phooey on all of you. Phooey!

Anonymous said...

If she lives in a cave, the canary would have passed long ago

Anonymous said...

I used to check out this blog site to see what others are saying about SFUSD. Since then, between the fool with the big vocabulary and the hysterics of Phooey, I find myself not really achieving my initial intent for checking out this blog site. Having said all that, I am entertained by the back and forth between the extremes. :)

Anonymous said...

Phooey, the days of seniority/tenure are numbered. The writing is on the wall. Even Obama is against it and he's very progressive. The Democrats are against it and Republicans always have been. Only teachers and a few others are against change. Time will catch up with us. And children will benefit.

Don Krause said...

12:31,

I understand. I have been neglecting the blog and not writing posts for the last month. It takes work!.While the local color is amusing, it wasn't exactly what I was looking for when I started this blog. Maybe I should go in the direction of satire. Well, I guess we've already done that, too, with some of these characters. If it was a creative writing comedy blog, it would have gone viral by now.

Anonymous said...

Viva Carranza? That guy has been terrible. What planet are you living on? Seriously? Viva Carranza? Name one good thing he's done.

Деян Кривошеенко said...

You can be young without money, but you can’t be old
without it Pension@ Change "http://pensiontransferspecialist.co.uk/"