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Vernon Patch Poll: What do You Want Out of School Reform?

Vote in the poll.

The Board of Education on Monday voted unanimously not to pursue elementary school reconfiguration for the 2012-13 academic year.

The school board not only put off any potential action regarding reconfiguration for a year but outlined an aggressive plan for academic reform that starts with a new language arts curriculum that Superintendent of schools Mary Conway badly wants implemented.

With that, we are asking reesidents to tell us what they want out of academic reform.

anna May 01, 2012 at 11:30 AM
parental accountability in their child's education.
Nancy S. May 01, 2012 at 11:54 AM
The school system needs some internal housekeeping. A State curriculum should be made available to guide the entire State. All day kindergarten for our little 5 year olds is not the answer and they are physically and mentally not ready for it. It turns the school in to a babysitting facility. There is only one professional school library media specialist in the Vernon School System. National studies show that student performance increases in schools have professionals in the library - collaborating with the teachers to increase information literacy. All towns surrounding Vernon have had several school librarians in their schools for years. Vernon has always been in the dark ages in this manner. There needs to be a revision of the technology department in the school system. Not the teachers, but the manner in which information is delivered and maintained. The web sites for the schools should be uniformed and easy to navigate - not a maze that one has to work through. Teachers need all the support they can get, not given new mandates that trickle down from the State's experiment in education. Administrators should be there to support and lead and not criticize and chastise teachers. They should do everything they can so the teachers can succeed and not just fire them on grounds of one or two student's failure. Administrators need support to help deal with discipline and social issues in their districts, so they can lead in guiding the education of their students.
cmmj May 01, 2012 at 12:36 PM
stop sending my kids home witth books that are taped together!
Kevin Ghostlaw May 01, 2012 at 05:25 PM
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:CLqQh1b4olQJ:mmfisher.org/docs/FINAL_OneChild_Michigan_12-11_Report.pdf+One-Child+School+Readiness+Dividend+study&cd=6&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=firefox-a
George May 01, 2012 at 05:38 PM
fair enough cmmj...now...did you vote today...did you support the budget...are you involved in your local PTO...are your kid(s) prepared when they go to school and do you support their teacher(s) and admin.??? This system we call "education" starts at home...are we fully onboard?? And, if you can answer yes to all of the above, how about your neighbor, your kids friends parents, other parents at your local school...this IS a group effort.
anna May 01, 2012 at 06:06 PM
George you make a great point.
anna May 01, 2012 at 06:10 PM
I still belive we have way to many administrators in our education system. Put the noney where it is needed.
Bert May 01, 2012 at 08:51 PM
Over 800 employees and only 20 administrators is too much?
GDP May 02, 2012 at 02:07 AM
Nancy S. - Maybe not all children are ready for full-day Kindergarten, but many certainly are. Look at the common core standards for Kindergarten. It's no longer simply a place where children learn to play and socialize with each other - there is SOOO much more to it, and trying to squeeze in all of the required academic work, as well as the necessary social work (let alone dealing with any behavioral issues) is just not feasible in a 3 hour day. Teachers are still expected to get all students reading, writing, doing relatively complex math (complex for a five year old). Perhaps some students (especially those who had a quality preschool experience, and supportive parents at home) would still be able to accomplish everything in a half day program. However, there are MANY students who need the extra academic time, especially with the government's stress on test performance. Yes, professional media specialists are important. Technology is important. Although, from what I've heard, it has been distributed unfairly in the town. (A certain school has more access to Smart Boards, computers in the classrooms, etc., than the other schools in town.) And I certainly would not deny that teachers need all the support they can get. Part of this necessary support, in my opinion, is keeping the paras in the classroom. Or perhaps our town could pay for a few more teachers so the class sizes are smaller and students get more individualized attention!
Nancy S. May 02, 2012 at 02:44 AM
I soooo realize that kindergarten in no longer simply a place to play and socialize. So - isn't this what it's all about? Dialogue - seeing what's wrong and what works creatively? Not all students need full day kindergarten - so why mandate it for all 5 year olds? A teacher told me she saw her highly excited, students being drained from all their excitement of learning because she had no time to be creative and review taught information due to the commitment to the rigor and mandates of the State and "common core standards". Data, data, data is what they want and can we really believe the data and can anyone interpret it? Our children are not machines. I think we need to set our priorities and focus on the child and work as a team and a community to make them succeed in both academics and life values.
Kurt Knotts May 02, 2012 at 05:51 PM
All day kindergarten!

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