Parent and taxpayer response

JUST SAY WHEN ...TO ANYONE SAYING YOU HAVE NO SAY IN YOUR CHILDREN'S EDUCATION. We are Citizens for Public School Education. We are Board Watchers. We want a Board of Education that follows the Law, because following the Law works for everyone. The purpose of this site is to help close the controversial Achievement Gap that is the subject in many educational arenas. Teachers are invaluable when dedicated individuals and are entrusted to encourage, nurture, and teach each child to achieve to the best of his/her individual abilities. Principals, Superintendents, Business Administrators, Support Staff, School Board Members, Attorneys and everyone else in the district must be dedicated to making certain that teachers have whatever they need in order to perform at their best. Teachers must be willing to go the extra mile like millions have done before them. This blog promotes an active, accurate & objective telling of history that includes ALL cultures and their literary, cultural and historical contributions to building America. We are Board Watchers.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Tell Englewood Board of Education that It Shall Put the Children First!

The news that EPSD and Bergen Academy must pay 2.3 million dollars to children that they failed to protect was not welcomed by Englewood taxpayers. We live here. We know the depths from which this insidious neglect rises. Money is steadily flowing out of the district. How many lawsuits must a Board of Education lose before the realization that they are doing something wrong becomes plain to all?

Liliana Saumet
Liliana Saumet read this statement to the Englewood Board of Education on May 10, 2012. I stood by her side. She was stopped by the Board President when her 3 minutes were up. I yielded my 3 minutes to her. She was stopped anyway. Mr. Jefferson, the owner of the organization, Circle of Colors, was not stopped as he countered her statements in flowery words about how well the board and Dr. Carlisle are doing. Mr. Jefferson is paid well with the taxpayer's money and he speaks up against the stakeholders. He is afraid that change will render his highly questionable relationship with EPSD null and void. (By the way, it should be noted here that Mr. Jefferson is NOT an Englewood Resident)

Liliana Saumet:
"What I find more disturbing is that the superintendent and the board at the time, first allowed an administrator to tutor kids when he was not supposed to especially behind closed doors.  Secondly, I don’t know how a person that did not speak Spanish can tutor non-English speaking children.   What is more disgraceful and appalling is that the teachers and staff members that brought this up to the corresponding parties were fired.  The main concern for the superintendent and the board of education at the time was to maintain this buried as deep as they could, so it would not hinder the negotiations for the academies.  Additionally knowing that people who were and are members of the current board did nothing to rectify the situation, instead helped conceal the evidence is shameful.  Unfortunately, like I have stated before the only victims are again the children.  With this payoff the children will be denied help and activities that would enable them to succeed in life,  For the victims, yes they are getting pay, but no one knows the extent of the mental damage done to these kids.  Unfortunately for me, I know, since my sister was sexually molested as a child and today at age 45 she continues to live with the after effect of what was done to her.   I wonder, if board members and superintendents take an oath of protecting the children and making sure that the schools are safe institutions for them, were the Academies worth these children’s pain? What assures us parents and community members that this will not happen again? How many times situations similar to this will be swept under the rug so the district does not get a bad reputation and gets the desired grants?

 At the beginning of the school year we were told that changes were going to be implemented at the high school to unite the gap between the two sides.  However, every since that Dwight Morrow students spoke, I have not been able to put out of my mind what he said.  Therefore, I started doing some research and I am very concerned with what I found.  I spoke to a group of approximately 30 students, some from the academies, most from the regular school.  I have also talked to some staff members and the results are the following.  The opinion between the students is basically the same, the school has gotten worse with the fights, the drugs, food is really bad, some teachers don’t want to teach, and they play movies all the time for them to watch.  When I asked about motivation, one told me what’s that? My only motivation in the morning is for the school day to end as fast as possible; I cannot cut school or quit because my mom will kill me.  Another one said, to sum it up, no one cares. Then I asked about the unity between the two sides and I was told, yeah right the academy kids get everything.  I was also told of an incident that a professor did not like the personal opinion of a student about a debate in class and just walked out. Some of the teachers are unhappy, they cannot cross educate between the regular school and the academies anymore, basically is like being in two different schools.  If we have unhappy teachers, we will have unhappy and bored students and as a result low test scores and a decrease in graduation rate.  As of April’s reports the total suspensions at the high school were up to 103 and the school year is not even over.  So what is the problem? Why haven’t the changes worked? Is it due to bad kids or lack of strong leadership? Have we given up on the non-academy children?

When I was younger I struggled in school, my mom was told by the teachers that I had a learning disability.  My mother, in her desperation wanted to know how bad it was and had me and my super smart 10 year old sister  IQ’s tested, I was 9.  To everyone amazement I not only scored 20 points above my sister, but I was considered gifted.  My teachers were surprised, but they did not want to step out of the box and continued the same teaching techniques.  But my sister in her small wisdom realized that I learned differently, and took it upon herself to make me succeed.   At first her methods included blackmail (such as if you get an A I will not tell mom you were playing soccer with the boys), extortion (the payment usually good grades on my part) and rewards (I got the TV for the whole weekend if I made honor roll); at the end I just did it because I wanted her to be proud of me.  All in all she turned me into an A student and helped me develop techniques to compensate and be able to learn.  When we grew up and went to college, I still had to overcome a lot of challenges.  I wanted to know why for me things that people found hard were easy and the simple stuff   such as learning how to tie my shoes was so hard, why like my son calls it I have a squirrel personality and why I have to do things in a certain way.  At age 23 I was diagnosed with a form of autism, similar to aspergers, the Dr. did not know how I developed the skills I had to cope on my own.  But I knew, it was the love of a 10 year old for her sister.  

In conclusion, I really think it is not that complicated, if we work together, Forget all the mumble jumble, the politics, the tenures and instead surround our kids with teachers that can step out of the box and love what they do. If we surround our kids with strong leaders that would oversee, evaluate and motivate those caring teachers, we will have motivated and successful children.  It is not that hard. If a 10 year old did it why can’t we? At the age of 8 I learned how to tie my shoes."

                                     How are the children?