So tonight, we are launching a new series intended to educate and inform our readers, old and hopefully new, of our "Daily Reason" why Mr. Turek should NOT be reelected.* Feel free to send us any reasons you would like to see added to the list.
And so we begin....
Daily reason #1: Four years ago the Hinsdale Caucus got it right when they did not endorse Mr. Turek.
* The Hinsdale D181 Caucus Committee also selected 3 additional candidates: Jennifer Burns, Leslie Gray and Richard Giltner. It would be premature for us to opine on these three caucus endorsed individuals without first conducting our own due diligence on their qualifications. In addition, additional candidates may choose to run for election. We certainly hope there will be at least one more candidate, so that Mr. Turek will not just waltz back into his board seat without a real contest. Our community deserves to listen to at least one public debate with all of the candidates during which they will have to present their positions on critical issues facing the district. Once all the candidates have emerged, and we have completed our due diligence, no doubt we will endorse one or more of them prior to the election.
He wasn't endorsed last time? How could the caucus members not have known? If I were a member of the caucus, that would have sent up a huge red flag for me. I would have thought to myself, why? Surely there were other well qualified and more informed candidates to choose from. Why would they do that?
Rumor has it that the oh so vicious attacks that have been leveled against volunteers by The Parents have scared off potential candidates ...
One of the problems with the promise of confidentiality by the Hinsdale Caucus is that the members almost immediately break that promise. Leaks abound. Everyone knows the names of at least 6 community members who went through the caucus process and "rumor" has it that there were actually 9. So obviously the bloggers did not have a chilling effect. It is actually funny that anyone thinks a blog run by concerned parents is that powerful. Instead, the real question is how could the Caucus committee was so stupid as to select Turek over the highly qualified community members who applied.
I'm sorry, 8:42am, but I think your statement is absurd. Anyone who would be afraid of The Parents probably would not be a strong enough candidate to handle the numerous and substantial issues facing this district.
I, too, am extremely disappointed that the Caucus endorsed Marty Turek. They made the right decision during the last election and given how much evidence we have of his ineffectiveness and his obnoxious behavior over the last two years as a BOE member, I don't see how they endorsed him this time around.
There are still a few weeks left for anyone that wants to gather the signature needs to get on the ballot DuPage County Elections Are there 50 people that would rather see someone like Jill Quinones run against Mr. Turek? I'd sign that petition...
Given there were literally NO concerned citizens to speak about the lack of adequate info for the recent levy I have little reason to believe that any substantial issues really matter to the majority of voters. Folks that seemed to have gained their seats on the BOE through misuse of email lists, glad handing at their country club and relying on pals that might remember some long-ago athletic prowess will probably see no value in showing up at a debate where they'd be grilled for their unethical misuse of FOIA to further their business career, ignore clear violations of the Illinois Open Meetings Act, waste district resources on departing administrators that should have been required to pay back educational stipends, setting a reasonable levy based on the real needs of the schools and ignoring the ongoing lack of accountability from staff...
Just as apathetic voters set the stage for radicals like Skoda & Corcoran to bring D86 to the brink of a dysfunctional labor action so too will the "can't be bothered with facts" voters allow the current do-nothing BOE to stumble along the comically stereo-typical "campus liberal" type approach to feel-good, no-consequence, watered down elementary schools that leave our children unable to compete with more success-oriented districts that see PARCC / Common Core for the low-bar / trick question fad that it is rapidly proving to be and bolster their curriculum with more substantial offerings that once were the hallmark of our district...
As was voiced by the Paula Kluth at her recent "Joyful Learning" presentation the evidence shows that the researchers that advocate for challenging students with material and fostering passion "were right all along" -- differentiation that encourages kids to do their best is far superior to generic teaching that lulls toward the lowest level of understanding. Folks like our current BOE titular president represent the sort of absolute minimum of "just showing up"...
Dear 8:42: Whoever created this blog is a "parent volunteer". Whoever posts on this blog is a "parent volunteer". These people also pay taxes, volunteer at schools, and all over the community. To suggest that other people were scared off by the facts and valid opinions of other parent volunteers is simply ridiculous. Frankly, if anyone was scared off by differing facts and opinions, then they did everyone a favor by not applying to be on the Board.
What should be of the utmost concern to all parents in this district is why scores are dropping when the administration has reached massive proportions. Where is all of the money going?
Finally, it is extremely disappointing that the caucus nominated Marty Turek. As president of the BOE, he failed the children at HMS by not properly supervising this facility over the last 5 years. His failure to ensure that basic preventative maintenance was done is what contributed to the multimillion dollar disaster that took children out of both middle schools last year.
His failure to supervise the math pilot resulted in a fifty thousand dollar purchase of sub par, experimental computerized math program that has to be abandoned after 2 months. Didn't the caucus go to the board meeting last month in which a hundred parents showed up demanding the pilot be abandoned?
Although he publicly criticized other parents for filing FOIAs to her basic answers, he had been filing FOIAs HIMSELF in other school districts! Presumably to promote his own software company - not even for the benefit of students!
In my opinion, Marty Turek has been an expensive detriment to our district. So WHY was he nominated? If the committee wants to save money and our schools, they need to nominate someone else or take him off the endorsed list.
Obviously the caucus members do not regularly attend BOE meetings. Shouldn't that be a requirement? Not just listen (if they even do that) but actually attend. Here's a suggestion for the Marty un-election Campaign (there are so many from which to choose)his dismissive statement at a recent BOE meeting that "all students grew" when the MAP and ISAT data clearly showed (and Dr. White had to agree) that many students did not. Did Marty even bother to look at the data prior to the meeting? Much of it was presented in simple bar chart format. Not confusing at all for most... And, since he was under the misguided belief that all children grew, of course there was no substantive discussion as to why a good number did not. Again.
Mr. Wick: Can you give us more information on the Joyful Learning presentation? Thanks!
As a caucus member (not the D181 caucus, though) and an applicant for the D181 board, I've been on both sides of the fence. I put myself out there and urge anyone who wants to ensure that we have excellent candidates to join the caucus in two years. The D181 caucus should have had 14 members, but only had 8. Why? Not enough community involvement. It's a limited time commitment and a great way to give back to the community.
Thank you Ms. Blumberg-Kason for going through the caucus. I heard you speak at a recent board meeting and was impressed by your comments. Please consider running for the school board even though the caucus didn't endorse you. If only 8 people were responsible for selecting the 4 candidates, rather than 14 as required by the caucus bylaws, the community should not give any weight to the title "caucus candidate." Instead, each candidate who runs for school board should be judged on their individual merit and their positions on D181 issues by each and every voter. It is clear that the D181 caucus has lost its way, since it couldn't even scrounge up enough community members to serve as delegates. Pitiful.
Thank you, Mrs. Mayer. I think the problem stands with the Caucus Executive Committee, not the D181 Caucus. As I understand it, the D181 Caucus is not responsible for finding Caucus members. That would be the responsibility of the Executive Committee, which oversees the selection process. I know and respect the three new D181 nominees and would worry that if I ran, it could backfire and unseat one of them.
While the general public may often be too apathetic to actually research who to support and turn out in spring elections is usually quite low that does not change the fact that those that do show to vote are not stupid.
It is good to have candidates that are dissatisfied with the unusually poorly run Hinsdale Caucus run even with endorsement.
The Hinsdale Caucus foolishly changed the usual procedure of an autumn formation to a spring formation, that meant folks may have been completely unaware of the radical nature of anti-tax zealots like those aligned with Skoda & Corcoran may have subverted the usual Caucus process.
If there are candidates that are more qualified than those that were endorsed it should be relatively easy to utilize things like social media and internet resources to raise awareness of who is really most qualified.
I encourage anyone with a modicum of interest to run -- a clear message is relatively easy to craft and unseating a do-nothing incumbent would be a welcome change for the better.
The bylaws of the Hinsdale Caucus are not particularly complex -- http://hinsdalecaucus.org/docs/HinsdaleCaucusByLaws052114.pdf
The schedule of the First & Second Regular Meeting of the Caucus as set forth in Article VII should NOT both be in the Spring when the election will be NEARLY A YEAR AWAY! This was an extremely foolish change. I will bring this up at the upcoming Third Regular Meeting scheduled for Wednesday, December 3, 2014 Hinsdale Library (Lower Level) 7:00 p.m
Jay, the D181 nominees are not anti-tax zealots. I even heard a rumor that people thought I was one. My husband spit his coffee when he heard that.
This is the link to the bios of the candidates that the D181 caucus endorsed:
The three new nominees appear to be highly qualified, committed and I believe that they would do an excellent job if chosen.
However, after reviewing all 4 bios, it does appear that one is not like the others. It is very weak in education background and professional experience.
It seems that the caucus feels pressure to endorse incumbents - just look at all three slates. I think this is where the problem lays.
Although I am disappointed that Turek was nominated, I am very pleased with the other three nominations.
I am not accusing you of being an anti-tax zealot nor do I know that any members of the Caucus nominating committee would identify themselves as such.
What I do know is that I have seen Turek short-circuit needed discussions of the district's financial status and prevent others from speaking out about the implications of such votes. There is no other explanation than trying to curry favor with radicals; why Turek has not required the district staff to prepare information about the actual costs of the recently adopted teacher's negotiated agreement and approve a levy that would ensure those costs are covered without cuts in the rest of the budget has to be more widely understood.
I can only assume that Turek is foolishly trying to claim to be "holding the line" on the levy when such ignorance will leave the district hundreds of thousands behind financially AND result in such paltry "savings" to home owners that they would not even be able to afford an extra carry-out coffee beverage every month...
If anyone on the Caucus D181 Nominating Committee bothered to listen to any of the live or archived pod-casts of the meetings over which Turek has presided this past year, the level of utter know-nothingness and blatant disregard for the requirements of a true leader that he exudes cannot be ignored -- another four years of such of lack of leadership and we'll need to find some corporations to sponsor "charter schools" to deal with the exodus from the district's failing regular schools.
I have seen Ms. Gray and Ms. Burns at enough of the BOE meetings to know that they at least grasp the issues and I'll have no problem supporting them but I am already actively seeking alternatives to Turek. If he is endorsed at the Caucus 3rd General Meeting I will have to back an un-endorsed candidate and Turek well knows how that can end...
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