Yes, the long-awaited presentation is finally here for parents to enjoy. We have waited for months, as has our elected BOE, for Schneider to finally step up and explain his perceived success of the Learning for All Plan, and his social-justice-fueled-all-inclusive-one-size-fits-all-non-labeled-non-research-based-ideology he has foisted upon the teachers and children in our district. But wait, he didn't do it alone. His comrades: Russell, Igoe and Benaitis have all had their input throughout the past two years. We're sure they will also be under the spotlight tonight, and we will be eager to listen and ask questions. Tonight, 7:00-8:30 p.m., Elm School.
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Kurt Schneider to Finally Give Presentation on "Nonnegotiables" Related to Learning For All Plan; Tonight, May 6 at Elm School.
Posted by The Parents at 8:50 AM
Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)
Why does the D181website calendar say that an RSVP is required? What if I won't know till tonight that I can go -- if my husband gets home in time to watch our kids? Will I be turned away if I just show up?
Good question anonymous. I think it will keep people away if they didn't RSVP. Will this session be videotaped, including the Q and A's, and posted on the website?
There is a big concert at the middle school tonight that will preclude many parents from coming. I hate to be a cynic, but there always seem to be major conflicts with these important meetings that drive down attendance. A podcast is a good idea.
That is why it was wrong for Schneider to cancel the April 30 session that parents could have attended while their kids were in school.
I have filed a FOIA request for the presentation materials. The district's response is due today. If they actually produce it, I will send in a link so everyone can see these public records.
Hey hey and holy cow --
This showed up in my inbox:
Tonight's presentation will focus on the non-negotiable principles that are necessary in order to create proactive, high achieving, inclusive schools for all students. Dr. Kurt Schneider, the Department of Learning, and D181 staff will share research, federal law expectations, and national, state, and local data trends. Time for Q&A will be included. All community members are invited to attend; RSVP is no longer required. The presentation is being recorded and will be posted on the District website.
Email blast from district:
"Non-Negotiable Principles for Creating Inclusive Schools for All"
Tuesday, May 6
Elm School, 7-8:30pm
Tonight's presentation will focus on the non-negotiable principles that are necessary in order to create proactive, high achieving, inclusive schools for all students. Dr. Kurt Schneider, the Department of Learning, and D181 staff will share research, federal law expectations, and national, state, and local data trends. Time for Q&A will be included. All community members are invited to attend; RSVP is no longer required. The presentation is being recorded and will be posted on the District website. Please contact Parent Liaisons Amy McCurry and Christine Allen if you have any questions. Thank you!
Does anyone know the status on the learning committee? The second deadline for applying is long past and we haven't heard a word. Could it be that they didn't like the pool of applicants - found them too controversial - so they scrapped the idea entirely?
I am guessing that the Superintendent's Learning Committee is another example of the district's "collective head" being unable to effectively accomplish anything. There are probably some disagreements between those that want to "manage public opinion" vs those who want to try to conduct business behind closed doors and probably some that may even have concerns over shoving so much unfinished business on the "new guy" that it reflects poorly on things.
It would be hard not so see that current leadership has much unfinished business. For essentially the whole term of the currently seated BOE there has been a real lack of progress on a disturbing range of issues. My imperfect memory can list a hefty sample of "loose ends" that are unresolved: when the gap between what the community could accept as disruption from classroom teaching and what the administration proposed as alternatives for additional staff training was too great the matter was just dropped, the district's own consultant has cited a lack of progress in implementing sufficiently engaging and differentiated classroom strategies, there has been no progress made toward expansion of foreign language instruction, staff that seemed to be tasked with creating a "data dashboard" for unified information about achievement has managed to kick that can down the road / lump it into work of other sub-departments ranging from inter-district liaison to software systems, there is confusion and widespread dissatisfaction with 'universal' math acceleration, children with special needs have literally grown so frustrated with their lack of integration into the overall student body that they've 'escaped' the lax supervision. Even facilities issues have been ignored until they've led to burst pipes and huge repair bills. Meanwhile there are members of the BOE majority that "break their own arms" patting themselves themselves on the back for own their fine work, to the chagrin of those that know better...
The selection of the new superintendent may present an opportunity to 'reboot' things but if the detachment and lackadaisical attitude of the BOE is not replaced with appropriate levels of oversight / clear strategic direction there will be no progress.
There is a clear need to get moving on a Curriculum Committee ASAP. For anyone that reads about the widespread problems that exist with the implementation of the Common Core standards and associated PARCC assessment the brewing storm that we will soon be thrust into should be reason enough to try to enlist as many community members / parents into a conversation about the direction of the district's curriculum changes. Time wasted in getting a dialog started with existing district staff may prove very detrimental. It seems far better to merely transition any group from the leadership of the existing superintendent to the incoming leader instead of letting the school year close out with no organizational progress...
As the parent of a fourth grader who has had two dismal years in this district, I totally agree with the last comment. Dr. Schuster and the board have left a huge mess for Dr. White, though this arrogant, clueless board would never admit it. Now it seems all board members are in agreement and support one another, at least this is the current "face" they have put on to the public. The dissenters have quieted down to complacency, and this must make Marty Turek quite happy.
Even if Dr. White tries to make some changes, he will have to deal with this inept board. It may take until after the next election and contract renewels to see anything change. This is why the private schodls in our area now have long waiting listis. My child's name is among them.
I am a fourth grade parent. I could not agree more with the above two posts. Dr. White - I read a newspaper quote that you want to dream big for Hinsdale. I appreciate the sentiment but no big dreams are needed - we just want the many loose ends fixed.
Let's hope Dr. White is not just a dreamer but a doer. We have enough dreamers in our administration and thank goodness two of them are leaving soon.
Did anyone attend the L4A presentation?
I don't see anything on the district site on the page where they generally have podcasts. Did it get recorded?
I did attend. It was video tapped. I just checked and it is not on the district web site yet, but it should be under the Family Education Tab under the Learning tab.
Turek, Nelson and Clarin (plus wife) represented the BOE. Schuster was there, the principal from Prospect, a handful of administrators and about 10 parents.
Schneider started off with a video from Google and asked us what skills our kids need to succeed in an environment like this. His take - group projects and valuing diversity. I think Mandarin and foreign language would help. Then we got a history on public education - starting from the gentile days. We eventually got to the non negotiables and inclusion model. We saw a video of a disabled boy getting accepted to college and a young african american boy telling an audience of other african americans that their voice must be heard.
There was no data at all to prove that inclusion produces superior results. There was no analysis of D181 at all, or why this is appropriate for our demographics. A few things became glaringly obvious. This method takes a ton of structural supports and a huge amount of professional development. It will not work with our heavy reliance on subs. Also, large class sizes, in my opinion, do not work with this. I am also perplexed why we are taking this on when we have to deal with common core and the fall out from math compacting.
In short, there is no data. It is all theory from a professor without much teaching experience.
I also attended the lecture last night.
Schneider claims that kids with special needs should get all their services in the classroom and not get pulled out. He claims pull outs are disruptive to their learning and creates labels that become self fulfilling.
My son benefited greatly from pull outs. The one on one time was invaluable and gave him the skills he needed to succeed in the classroom. He now no longer needs those services. He was not labeled and the teachers made every effort to not disrupt his learning. I actually think he would have been labeled more if he had received the services in the classroom and it would have been too distracting. Inclusion would not have worked for him.
Were any questions asked at the L4A presentation?
What about kids that are currently very limited in their contact with the general student population? Was that explored?
Surely Mrs. Clarin was not there in any "official" capacity -- https://sites.google.com/site/mrsclarinshmssite/
Kurt Schneider has never lifted a piece of chalk to teach within the confines of an elementary school classroom. I looked at his resume on this blog and he has only taught for several years at a high school. He should go find a job at a high school or college where he can promote his theories and use those students in his experiments. You can bet he's hoping he can sell his nonsense to Dr. White just as he did successfully to Dr. Schuster. But because his cast of male cohorts on the BOE, several of whom appeared at his talk last night, worship the ground he walks on, he's safe as a kitten within a litter. Memo to Schneider: full inclusion was tried and failed in the 1970s-early 1980s. Look it up.
Why isn't the video of the Non-negotiables session on the D181 website yet? I wonder if it is going to be scrubbed clean of the Q&A's that were interspersed throughout Schneider's presentation? I hope not because the whole parent community has the right to see and hear the whole thing, not just Schneider going slide by slide through his power point presentation.
Schneider also said advanced learners should also get all their services in the classroom - no pull outs. And one teacher can meet all of these diverse needs across the spectrum.
I haven't seen the presentation yet but it sounds almost identical to the presentation given by the Advanced Learning Task Force at the Dec. 10, 2012 BOE meeting. I thought then that it was nothing more than a "feel good" presentation about including minorities and those with special needs, it had nothing to do with curriculum, advanced learning, etc... and, as the bloggers noted, no data whatsoever on inclusion. My take on it then was that it was just a politically correct message about not "leaving anyone behind" which is fine but which certainly does not require the elimination of advanced services, acceleration of all and an impossible amount of differentiation in a classroom, to achieve. Certainly diversity and working with groups are good things in theory but not in subjects such as math. Totally unnecessary and inefficient. Sounds a lot like the open classroom theory that was popular in the 70's and which we all know was a failure on all counts and which has left us with the mess at HMS.
I did not attend the lecture. However, after reading the above comments, I now understand why our larger schools performed so poorly compared to our smaller schools last year. Our demographics are similar, yet we had huge disparities (for example - compare our smallest and largest schools - Oak 15, Monroe 109 in the rankings). Now it is obvious! This inclusion method requires TONS of structural supports. So naturally a school that is twice the size of another school with roughly the same amount of resources will fair poorly. It had nothing to do with boys vs girls or demographics or one group being smarter or better teachers. And I'm sorry, the additional .5 differentiation specialists will not make a dent in that disparity.
Post a Comment