SolutionsGatherer 
Member since May 8, 2014

Recent Comments

Re: “Teachers Blast Unruly Students at New School

Hi, Nicole. Can you provide any citations to media reports on Henrico's efforts to address unruly students and the Justice Departments's actions in response to them? Is Justice's investigation still ongoing, and are Henrico's student discipline problems concentrated in particular schools or districts of the division? Thanks.

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Posted by SolutionsGatherer on 05/21/2014 at 6:24 AM

Re: “Show Us Your School

ForRespect, thanks, for the article reference to Jones Announces Emergency Schools Funding as Teachers Decry Learning Conditions. You acknowledge the behavior reported is not allowed in Open High and Richmond Community--is it also not allowed in the other 50 RPS schools not mentioned in the article (most of which, like MLK, are majority black)? Are Open High and Richmond Community even likely to experience the same magnitude of such incidents requiring their attention--and is that not due in large measure to their parent and student populations not having the same magnitude of the difficult living circumstances you acknowledged before?

As you write, what's reported is an issue that is REAL and that truly affects the learning environment. It should not have come to that. But that real issue is not going to make you deny the other difficult living conditions that you've appreciated and completely understood are more prevalent in inner-city divisions than in others. And again, how does Richmond compare to other school divisions dealing with equal magnitudes of those difficult living conditions?

In your comments to that story you included the "teachers that had any self respect and wanted to teach, packed up and left. And, any parent/child that wanted a good education did the same as well." As Dirty Harry used to say: "A man has got to know his limitations." Who can blame them for doing what they think is best for themselves and their families? But neither do I believe that none of the remaining teachers and families have self respect, want to teach, or want a good education.

Style Weekly's mission includes "mak[ing] sense of the news and giv[ing] readers the information to make intelligent decisions." The focus and solutions generated by the email, article, and comments like yours will help MLK and RPS improve. I do not think, however, that all of the under funding of RPS is due to the level of teacher salaries. What other services and features of the public school system have been going underfunded because Richmond has been devoting 11% less than Henrico to the public education of its children?

Posted by SolutionsGatherer on 05/20/2014 at 7:40 AM

Re: “Show Us Your School

... instead of "invest" how about "devote": If Henrico devotes 54% of its county budget for the public education of the 16% of its population that is enrolled in its public schools, why shouldn't Richmond match that commitment to the public education of its youth with 37% (instead of only 26%) of its budget devoted to the public education of the 11% of its population that is enrolled in its public schools?
(http://jamesrivermaven.blogspot.com/2012/03/mayor-jones-and-school-board-part-2.html)

Posted by SolutionsGatherer on 05/17/2014 at 10:56 AM

Re: “Show Us Your School

ForRespect,

Thanks, for the school report cards link: https://p1pe.doe.virginia.gov/reportcard/

What does it mean to say you appreciate and completely understand the difficult living circumstances of inner-city students, how those circumstances do make it more difficult to get the children to focus, then blame the teachers and the school system as broken? Why not appreciate their achievement in the face of those difficult living circumstances? And how much better would they perform if their funding matched that of the surrounding localities (Percentage of Municipal Budget for Public Education vs. Percentage of Population Enrolled)?

When Richmond is compared to school divisions with the same magnitude of those difficult living circumstances, how does its performance compare? Instead of rating it against suburbs or foreign communities with less magnitude of those difficult circumstances, wouldn't that be a truer reflection of Richmond's performance? How does it compare to Philadelphia, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Atlanta, Chicago, Miami, LA, or NY, for instance? What are their percentages of students with free & reduced lunch? Parent dropout rate? Single parent households? PTA membership? Parent-Teacher conference attendance? Unemployment rate? Crime rate? Can we say we appreciate and completely understand the difficult living circumstances of inner-city students, then call those very same factors excuses?

In your May 2 post you acknowledged that two schools in Richmond have really good scores: Open High and Richmond Community. Those two schools have RPS teachers--just like the other RPS schools. If RPS teachers were "the problem" those two schools would not have really good scores--despite being "Specialty Schools with limited amount of students." The difference is not the teachers or number of students, but the lower magnitude in those two schools of those difficult living circumstances that you admit make it more difficult to get the children to focus.

Should we show our appreciation for what Richmond achieves in the face of those difficult living circumstances of many of its students? If Henrico invests 54% of its county budget for the public education of the 16% of its population that is enrolled, why shouldn't Richmond match that commitment to the public education of its youth with 37% (instead of only 26%) of its budget for the public education of the 11% of its population that is enrolled?
(http://jamesrivermaven.blogspot.com/2012/03/mayor-jones-and-school-board-part-2.html)

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Posted by SolutionsGatherer on 05/17/2014 at 10:37 AM

Re: “Show Us Your School

ForRespect,

I took http://bi.virginia.gov/BuildATa to be the source for the data cited, but it gave this error msg: The resource you are looking for might have been removed, had its name changed, or is temporarily unavailable.

Have another reference link?

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Posted by SolutionGatherer on 05/08/2014 at 11:42 AM

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