Monday, April 21, 2014

Carthage Central School Pulls a Fast-One

Tonight at the Carthage Central School Board meeting the administration and the Board(not the entire Board) pulled a fast-one on teachers, parents, students, etc.  To understand what they did, I need to layout a short trail of events that led up to it.

For the April 7th meeting an agenda was published on the Friday before that included “8.3 Adopt NYS Common Core Modules” under Action items (please see image below).  My wife put out a call to concerned parents, teachers, and community members to show up to the meeting and express their concerns.  For whatever reasons, on Monday morning a revised agenda was posted that excluded “8.3 Adopt NYS Common Core Modules”.  Regardless, 30+ parents, teachers, and community members showed up that night.  Some were very vocal about their concerns and others attended to show support.  At the meeting the Board was asked why 8.3 was removed and the reply that we received was that there needed to be further discussion on it before a vote would occur.

Above image - screen shot of the original agenda posted for April 7th.

Here is a link for the April 21 agenda. Notice that 4.0 is “Modules”.  My wife and I were excited because this item was on the agenda and thought we would be able to listen in on some of the “further discussion” that would occur.  WRONG!  The Board had a brief discussion on a proposed policy that the superintendent sent to Board members a week before to look over for using the modules.  The discussion resulted in some slight changes of wording in the proposed policy and then it was placed up for a vote.  The proposed policy was passed with a 6 to 1 vote.  All teachers will be forced to "utilized" the modules.

You be the judge.  Was the removal of “8.3 Adopt NYS Common Core Modules” from the April 7th agenda a strategic move?  Were they really sincere about having “further discussion” before putting it to a vote?  Was the use of the wording “4.0 Modules” on the April 21st agenda done intentionally to appear that action was not going to be taken, compared to the April 7th agenda that stated “8.3 Adopt NYS Common Core Modules”?

Personally, I cannot answer these questions optimistically.  I have lost a lot of trust with the Carthage Central Board and especially the administration.  The way this whole process has gone done is tainted with a rushed adoption, broken protocol and policies, and blatant manipulations.  All of which have been orchestrated by administration and condoned by the Board.