Wednesday, April 8, 2009


I am writing today because I am angry. I am writing because this needs to be said. I am writing because it is true, and must be said before it comes true.

I oppose Proposition U.

I do not oppose it because I hate our schools, for that is not true.
I do not oppose it because I want a taxbreak.

I oppose it for reasons far more rational.

First, I do not trust the school board. They have given me plenty of reasons to distrust them in the recent past.

Last year they forced out one of the best principals that we have had. She asked them when Aaron Zaggy began to run for homecoming queen if that was okay. They said yes. And then he won. Parents were outraged, girls who had run were upset. It was no longer okay. The board did not stand by Bender. And this was the final straw for her. She left.
And then they tried to replace her. They sent word to all U City families that the principal from Normandy was to be our new principal next year. That was before he signed the contract. And then he chose to stay at Normandy.
So they chose their second choice. Mr. B.
Joylynn (I do not respect her enough to use her title) told Mr. B that he had deficiencies, but that together thay would work on getting rid of them. She did no such thing.
She also all but told Mr. B. that he would be principal next year if he did well this year. She told the same thing to STUCO.
And then this year, after a wonderful year, she decides to open the search again. Mr. B. will not be our principal next year. But it is April, and she has already rejected the first set of options. So at this point, we don't have a principal for next year.
She claims that B doesn't have the "right qualifications." But he made it into the top last year. So why were his qualifications fine for last year, but not this year?
A new principal will not be well recieved. It will take him or her a long time to get the student body to like them. We are up for accreditation in two years time. How can this new person make the incredible changes needed to get us accredited in just two years when the student body does not trust them?
It seems nearly impossible to me.
Especially since it is April and she has not found someone with the "proper qualifications" yet.

That's just principals. What about everything else?

How about the way they went about formulating Prop U?

They brought in a firm to look at all of the schools to see what work needs to be done to them. The firm said that there need to be several rennovations to two of the elementary schools and the middle and high school. They also said that two of the elementary schools need to be rebuilt.
And that is how the board campaigned the Prop. (Yes. They campaigned for it. They weren't supposed to because it was a bond issue. They were only supposed to give information. But I consider all of what they did for it campaigning. By the way. When we got the auto-dialer it was not supposed to be used for politics. But they did.)
They did not even mention that they were going to be closing down two elementary schools. They didn't mention them in their information. They just left it up to the citizens to figure it out. That seems sleazy to me.
It also doesn't make sense to me that one of the two schools that they are closing down, Nathaniel Hawthorne, is one of two schools in the district that is meeting its Annual Yearly Progress. Oh, by the way. It is north of Olive.
They claimed that they were closing that school because it had "too much damage." That is illogical to me because four years ago, when we closed McNair, a firm came in and looked at all tha buildings and all of the rennovations that needed to be done. Hawthorne cost the least four years ago. Is it loggical that it could need so much more money for rennovations four years later? No. Not to me.
And it may be that they are looking at different aspects this time, like Alaina claimed, but how could I possibly know when they are keeping so much information from the residents.
That is shady. Not at all the way to gain my trust.

I would not trust Joylynn with ten dollars, let alone 53.6 million.
Oh, by the way, there were some things that did not get done four years ago with that bond issue. Why is that? Will it happen again?
Probably. Esspecially because we are in a reccession. The dollar isn't worth as much. And that isn't going to change any time soon. It is going to cost more than they think to do what they want.

Second, as I mentioned, we are up for accreditation in two years. If the board focusses on their lovely little bond issue, then they aren't focussing on accreditation. Accreditation is more important than having nice buildings. I can learn in a hut if it comes to that, as long as I am learning.
Zoe thinks that they will be able to do both. I disagree. I do not have reason to believe that they can do anything right. See above. Note that we still do not have a principal for next year.
There is a lot we need to do to get accredited, and I don't forsee it happening.

Third, as I mentioned, we are in a reccession. Now is not the time to take on something this big and expensive. Yes, we do need renovations to be done. I know that. I agree with that. But we don't need to do it on this big of a scale right now, at such an inopportune moment.

Fourth, this will put us in a debt that will take something like twenty-two years to pay off. In fifteen years, every student in the district will have a laptop. The board will want to put wifi in all of the schools and rewire the buildings to have more outlets. But they won't have the money to do it, and they won't be able to pass a bond issue for it.
So, assuming they don't get everything done that they want to get done (which they won't, I'm positive) we will just fall farther behind.

All in all, I am angry that something so ill-fated could pass.

And I have concluded that I will not be able to send my children to U City schools as I had hoped to. The district will not be able to bounce back in ten or fifteen years when I am thinking about building a family.

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