search
top

Education for the Aughts Podcast: Dennis Prager and Independence Day, Hillsborough County Grade Inflation, and Utica Area Schools Falter

This edition of the Education for the Aughts Podcast addresses three topics:

  • A look at patriotic curricula in public schools – what we had and where we’re not;
  • Grade inflation in Hillsborough County, Florida;
  • Lack of accountability in New Hartford, NY and a financial boondoggle in Utica, NY.

You can play this Education for the Aughts Podcast by clicking on the triangular ‘play’ button on the player below [or at the bottom of the post if you’re reading this in RSS] – it will expand and begin streaming audio. Alternatively, you can download an mp3 file of the podcast to listen in your own media player.

And, if you like what you hear, you can subscribe to Education for the Aughts Podcast using RSS or using iTunes.

[audio:http://matthewktabor.com/audio/aughts_podcast_03_arbor_fl_utica_64kbps.mp3]

… and a partial transcript with links from the podcast is below.

I listened the other day, as I do most days, to talk radio host Dennis Prager. He lamented on this Independence Day that American children just don’t sing patriotic songs anymore – and he’s quite right.

Dennis’s point reminded me of something in my historical archives – a program of instruction for Arbor Day in New York State Schools, May 8, 1896. The program is a 16-page guide from the Dept. of Public Instruction that outlines activities and themes that schools might cover on the celebration of Arbor Day.

Near the end of that program is a list of songs that school-children could sing:

Keller’s American Hymn
Flag of the Free
Hail, Columbia
Star-Spangled Banner
Battle Hymn of the Republic
Columbia, Gem of the Ocean
Columbia, God Preserve thee Free
and America

Following that, there was an “exercise on the American Flag.”

Remember, folks, this was for *Arbor Day*. That our current celebrations of American holidays pales in comparison to what we’ve done in the past for even fairly unimportant holidays, shows how much we have, to quote Virginia Slims, come a long way, baby – and that’s not always a good thing.

The inimitable Suzie Creamcheese, who blogs at The Wall, passed on yet another tidbit about Hillsborough County.

Hillsborough County, Florida – for those of us outside the state, we can just think of this as the greater-Tampa area – has a grade inflation problem. A big one.

As The Tampa Tribune opined a few weeks ago:

“It used to be that a 4.0 grade-point average was considered a perfect “A,” but the numbers posted by some recent Hillsborough high school graduates have been positively stratospheric – including the county’s top GPA of 8.68 earned by a student at King High School who was this year’s numbers leader.

Who knew there was even such a thing as being more than doubly perfect?”

Well, Tribune editors, if you hadn’t realize by now that Superintendent Elia and her administration think *they’re* doubly-perfect, now you do. See, they’re just passing on to the students the back-patting that’s given administrators in Hillsborough County a grievous case of bursitis over the last year.

Later in the piece – and it’s a must-read – we see real evidence of grade inflation from the mouths of babes:

“As one Chamberlain High School student recently put it: “In our class, anything under a 5.0 is considered mediocre to sucky.” And here we thought a 5.0 was better than perfect.

The district would provide considerable more transparency and accountability if it ceased monkeying with the labels and scoring systems and simply made high school courses appropriately hard and fair.

Schools should give extra credit to students who push themselves the extra mile, but there’s no need to pile it on so thick.”

A sensible suggestion, no doubt.

In an absolutely useless rebuttal to the Tribune’s editorial, Superintendent Mary Ellen Elia, back-patter extraordinaire and anything but a scholar, explained to we who are so intellectually deficient, why these GPAs are so high:

“The Tribune’s June 14th editorial is yet another unnecessarily harsh jab at the public schools.”

Actually, Ms. Elia, it’s a fair treatment of a glaring problem with your terrible administration. She went on to explain to we who are ignorant dolts and the like why, exactly, these GPAs are so gosh-darn high:

“There’s a simple reason the GPAs are higher: Students take more classes and more challenging classes. Good for them.”

Yes, Superintendent Elia – and since you’ve weighted those class grades so outrageously, your students wind up with GPAs that mirror Mary Lou Retton’s scores on the floor exercise.

Your system created the problem, then you tell us that we’re dumb for not realizing how the system works. If you want to know why I don’t live in this otherwise wonderful part of Florida, there ya go.

[April Griffin's endorsement of Stephen Gorham]

http://www.matthewktabor.com/images/victorian_line.gif

On a more local note, there’s a bit of news out of New Hartford, New York regarding public information requests. The blog New Hartford, NY Online, an offshoot of the New Hartford Concerned Citizens, would like to see New Hartford Central School comply with the Freedom of Information Laws – or FOIL, for short. They say:

“That’s right; it is a law, but the New Hartford Central School just doesn’t seem to think they need to comply.

We have received emails from our readers asking us when we think we might get a copy of the Employees Union Contract that was approved by the school board in January. The clock keeps ticking…”

Hopefully their clock has a fresh battery, because it may have to tick for quite some time before the district responds. One is sometimes driven to think that FOIL, to public school administrators, is just something you make hats out of in ed school.

And on Fault Lines, the Greater Utica Blog, we learned that the Utica City Schools administration is pushing a $187 million dollar bond. Says one Ms. Bernadette Eichler in the Utica O-D:

“Over the years, I have worked with brilliant, creative and caring administrators, teachers, members of the Utica Board of Education, college staff and community members.

Their wisdom, leadership, support and ideas did indeed bring the students in the Utica district to a higher level of academic achievement. These abilities and talents also created a stimulating environment for learning, as well as provide opportunities for students to explore and try new ideas.

Now this leadership and support groups of Utica have an unbelievable opportunity to once again demonstrate their wisdom and talents by supporting the $187.6 million bond issue.”

Fault Lines mashes the nail right on the head:

“Wow. These are the same people who studied a project for months that they could not carry out, shuffled administrators like they were a deck of cards, couldn’t keep student schedules straight, ran out of textbooks, and spent a ton of money at Proctor and now want to spend more at the same school.”

And to make matters worse, a commenter on Fault Lines said that the project:

“won’t cost tax payers a dime.”

To hearken the earlier Arbor Day discussion, we’d do well to remind our kids on the next Arbor Day that money, especially tax money, doesn’t grow on trees, contrary to what their schools’ administrators seem to think.

Ms. Eichler may find this bond proposal to be an “unbelievable opportunity,” but she’s wrong – I most certainly believe it, as it’s just another in a series of local boondoggles we in Upstate New York are asked to approve. I’m reminded of one we defeated here in Cooperstown – I forget how much, probably in the trillions – about which an architect on the project explained that new windows would, “Increase learning by double digits.” I was tempted upon hearing that explanation to show him a *single* digit – and if you can’t figure out which one, pretend it’s the old SAT and go with “C.”

The only bit of sweetness here is when we read that Ms. Eichler is a retired deputy superintendent of the Utica City School District. Thank God for that.

93 Responses to “Education for the Aughts Podcast: Dennis Prager and Independence Day, Hillsborough County Grade Inflation, and Utica Area Schools Falter”

  1. Keyword Tool – Gives precise numerical activity of searches.
    Using social media and search engine optimization to drive web traffic is the hottest marketing technique on the market.
    Cloaking – In “cloaking” search engine optimization services, website
    builders manage to produce a false version of a website which is shown to search
    tool spiders.

  2. There has been many new improvements to its software features and the following
    are the more outstanding changelog which makes the GSA leads in the forefront
    leaving its competitors behind. It is quite true that
    over 85% of all websites on the internet get less than 100 hits per month.
    All Pages are already Indexed Well in Search Engines
    and have l – OW Out Bound links rate.

  3. Spot on with this write-up, I honestly believe this web site needs far more attention. I’ll
    probably be returning to read through more, thanks for the information!

    Have a look at my blog post http://www.gamescaner.com/profile/waobryan

  4. Vps Hosting says:

    Hi everyone, it’s my first go to see at this site, and post
    is really fruitful designed for me, keep up posting such articles.

    Here is my site :: Vps Hosting

  5. Hello, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues.

    When I look at your blog site in Opera, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping.
    I just wanted to give you a quick heads up! Other then that, superb blog!

    Here is my site: Click Here To Continue Your Page (forum.telugupopups.com)

  6. whoah this blog is fantastic i really like reading your posts.
    Stay up the good work! You realize, many people are searching round for this info, you can aid them
    greatly.

  7. Do you mind if I quote a few of your posts as long as I provide credit and sources back
    to your site? My blog site is in the exact same niche as yours and my visitors would
    definitely benefit from a lot of the information you present here.
    Please let me know if this alright with you.
    Thanks a lot!

  8. Great delivery. Sound arguments. Keep up the amazing effort.

    my blog – balanced diet

  9. What were broker your goals. Geoff Woods is a powerful tool.
    Set up is your name to a ball game.

    Feel free to surf to my web blog reduce sales cycles consultants

  10. Alex says:

    WOW just what I was searching for. Came here by searching for
    toronto

  11. If the asset is held for the full five years and the future value cash
    flow of $10,000 is realized, what is the discount rate of the asset.
    Primary sales urgency is created by the need or want to own the product bases on how that product will benefit the customer or provide a
    solution to their problems. Mostly, the prices are the
    same with the prices indicated on similar items displayed on the
    mortar-and-brick shops.

  12. I create a leave a responhse whenever I especially enjoy a article on a
    website or I have something to cotribute to the discussion. It’s caused
    by the fire displayed iin the article I looked at.

    And on this article Waning national identity,
    Florida grade inflation, NY budget boondoggles.

    I was excited enough to post a leave a responsea response :
    -) I actually do have a couple of questions for you if it’s okay.

    Is it only mme or do a few oof these responses come across lile they are left by
    brain dead visitors? :-P And, if you are posting
    on other places, I’d like to keep upp with you. Could you
    list thee complete urls of all your communal
    sites like yojr linkedin profile, Facebook page or twitter feed?

    Look at my weblog – UK Sildenafil

  13. bali hai says:

    I believe what you said was actually very logical.
    But, what about this? suppose you added a little content?

    I ain’t suggesting your information isn’t solid, however what if you added a post title that grabbed a person’s attention? I mean Waning national identity, Florida grade inflation,
    NY budget boondoggles is kinda plain. You could glance at Yahoo’s home page and note how they create
    article headlines to get viewers interested. You might add a video or a related picture or
    two to get readers interested about what you’ve got to say.
    In my opinion, it could bring your website a little bit more interesting.

  14. Hi Dear, are you actually visiting this web page daily,
    if so then you will absolutely take good know-how.

  15. I think this is among the most important info for me.

    And i’m satisfied reading your article. But want to statement
    on some basic issues, The website style is wonderful, the
    articles is in point of fact excellent : D. Excellent process, cheers

  16. Le Fair says:

    What’s up, all the time i used to check blog posts here early in the morning, because i love to find
    out more and more.

  17. Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the images
    on this blog loading? I’m trying to find out if its a problem
    on my end or if it’s the blog. Any feed-back would be
    greatly appreciated.

    my weblog … After effects

  18. What’s Going down i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I’ve found It absolkutely useful
    and it has helped me out loads. I hope to give a contribution & assist
    different customers like its helped me. Good job.

  19. This gadget is easy to clean up and use, and you will save all kinds of money in the long run. Restaurant equipment and supply
    stores are a great resource for inexperienced restaurant owners, week-end chefs, or
    people who just want to prepare a recipe that they have seen done by a celebrity chef on one of the ever
    popular cooking shows. These are the essential piece of
    kit to help you quickly mix dough, cream and cake ingredients, and
    they are available with a variety of speeds and attachments to help you get the job done.

    Look at my weblog – Confederative

  20. Shelley says:

    Hmm it appears like your website ate my first comment (it was super long) so I
    guess I’ll just sum iit up what I submitted and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog.

    I too am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m stilll new too the whole thing.
    Do you have any tios and hints for rookie blog writers?
    I’d definitely appreciate it.

    Have a lokok at my website … best bots (Shelley)

  21. Regarding DIY pop manufacturer: Just want to weighin of
    building your own, to the relatively blah selection.
    If you would like togo to mineral water from soda water, this
    site is remarkable and astonishingly indepth. I needed a soda producer then I
    needed one (for deacidifying papers, for reals,
    this is what I’m learning how to do)., Feature Air and more at Target Australia retailers and acted upon customer demand|During the quarter, the brand new SodaStream administration applied client desire and
    chose to offer types like Grapes Dime or steel items may be designed to repeatedly
    shake near the magnetic, making the interference. A.
    Just in case you maximize of the turbine that creates ample power, you actually
    may go the application grid that is standard off. A magnetic generator
    doesn’t take significantly area up and performs correctly in every kinds of houses.
    Nations around the world are spending vast amounts of money in evaluation assured of taking all that vitality that is magnet has to offer.
    Feature Jets household soda manufacturers (shown R) look great on your kitchen table.

  22. regime says:

    I absolutely love your blog and find many of your post’s to be just what
    I’m looking for. Do you offer guest writers to write content for
    you personally? I wouldn’t mind publishing a post or elaborating on many of the
    subjects you write related to here. Again, awesome blog!

  23. This website definitely has all off the info I needed concerning this subject
    and didn’t know who to ask.

  24. Cathern says:

    Hey are using WordPress for your site platform? I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and create my own. Do you require any coding knowledge to make your own blog? Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  25. web site says:

    Within that time frame is the perfect amount
    of space for your ex to realize that the girl he’s trying to fill the void
    you left behind isn’t you. A respectable sexcam internet site offers you best cam sex that
    unlocks the entrance to the hardcore grounds on the internet.
    He literally buys the farm ‘ an apple farm in upstate New York
    and he turns his back on a world where the internet is going
    to explode exactly in all the ways he predicted.

  26. Thankfulness to my father who shared with me about thjs weblog, this weblog is
    actually awesome.

    Look into my blog; people making money online

  27. Jimmie says:

    Heya this is kind of of off topic but I was wanting to know if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.
    I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding know-how so I wanted to get advice from
    someone with experience. Any help would be enormously appreciated!

    Feel free to surf to my web page: ALL KWs
    (Jimmie)

  28. Today, I went to the beachfront with my children.
    I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her
    ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear.
    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is completely off topic but I had to tell someone!

  29. Hey there, You have done a great job. I’ll certainly digg it and personally suggest to my friends.

    I’m sure they will be benefited from this website.

    Also visit my blog post: oracle de l amour

  30. Kermit says:

    But Ann D, fast-growing until now, possibly worsen or contribute to weight gain stimulant for certain individuals.
    Look for more diet drinks potentially lead to diabetes.

    I went to my society. Will the new product and drank milk. For a
    healthy diet plan you can tell you that the canned insects are
    lacking in zinc, which can be damaged without the risk of cardiovascular problems, diabetes and other autoimmune disorders.

    Feel free to surf to my web-site … food lovers fat loss system
    (Kermit)

  31. Perhaps, for them the best means of travel would be by air,
    followed by a BWI taxi service. He might not know alternative routes
    to get you to the airport as fast as possible or he might not have
    a good driving history. Once you’ve made sure that your limousine is reserved, relax.

  32. Currently it seems like Movable Type is the preferred blogging platform out there
    right now. (from what I’ve read) Is that what you’re using on your blog?

  33. The chainsaw also has an computerized oiling system for good lubrication of the
    chain, which leads to a clean efficiency. The 3.5 HP sixteen-inch electric chainsaw is lightweight and excellent for most residential makes use of.
    The chain on this power device is a device-less chain that supports stress nicely.

    Like the previously mentioned gasoline chainsaw, this electric chainsaw also has an automatic oiling system.

    Look at my weblog :: craftsman chainsaw parts manual

  34. Oh my goodness! Amazing article dude! Many thanks, However I am having problems with your RSS.

    I don’t knnow why I am unable tto join it. Is there anybody having identical RSS problems?

    Anyone that knows thhe answer can you kindly respond? Thanx!!

  35. This article will assist the internet visitors for building up new
    website or even a blog from start to end.

  36. The views of the center from the top of the tower are simply
    breathtaking. All you can say is that these wears are perfect for all kind of moods.
    Rich, pearlized color combines with natural oils rich in nutrients to leave your lips soft, shiny and
    100% naturally beautiful. ” with a smiley face to show her you’re being flirtatious. 90′s is the time of navel rings beginning; however, present time is the time when cute belly button rings became very popular.

    My webpage – too cute animal planet french bulldog

  37. To put it simply, if people do not feel aat ease
    when they visit a website for the first time,
    they will probably not return to it a second.
    So, thoroughly anallyze all the packages, compare them with your needs and thrn seledct the most suitable websaite
    design package to create your business website.
    A professionally designed site will attract relevant
    visitors.

    Review my webpage website design and maintenance

  38. Wonderful blog! I found it while browsing on Yahoo News.

    Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News? I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there!
    Thanks

    Review my website WordPress Drag and Drop

  39. Maurine says:

    I’m gone to convey my little brother, that he should also visit this website
    on regular basis to get updated from latest gossip.

  40. Eunice says:

    obviously like your website however you have to test the spelling on quite a
    few of your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling problems and I to find it very bothersome to tell the reality then again I’ll certainly
    come back again.

  41. ALL KWs says:

    Hi to all, since I am actually eager of reading this weblog’s post
    to be updated regularly. It contains pleasant material.

    Feel free to visit my blog: ALL KWs

  42. Coca-Cola, Proctor & Gamble and GM contain the
    billion dollar marketing budgets to drag this off.
    *By 1534, there are about 35 different games.
    How else will the alchemists get their inspiration and motivation. Sometimes,
    individuals make this happen to intimidate another players and to make
    sure they are believe he has an extremely nice hand.
    * A blue card describes a Pokemon which resides within the water and it has water abilities.
    Some of the spell assaults cover greater single block of square, which may have devastating relation to
    the opponent, even if he’s way from the reach of you.
    But, Bridge is one of the most popular bidding game across
    the world. There are designs and themes of fancy cards for all’s styles, whether they’re
    new players or seasoned professionals there is a deck of fancy cards for anyone.
    Today they may be in the same way entertaining as they were then,
    and if you are playing for cash or perhaps for fun there a fairly easy card deck can entertain anyone.
    In fact you can find spades mega tournaments with prize pools around $4200.
    Another Blackjack game, Black Jack Maniac is often a single player
    only experience that simply tops the previously mentioned online Blackjack
    game. I need to let you know that some experts
    feel that performing “Ouija Board” is basically
    dangerous. No two game of Munchkin is ever going to
    be the same, in case you truly desire variation, add an expansion pack, as well as morph two games into one.
    When you might be sitting in your office and you might be
    losing interest, you realize where to go.

    I hope the cardboard math games for kindergarten covered here help
    you in some way with educating young kids through
    maths. This could make is great for when you are waiting to look somewhere or even in every other case have enough time that you just simply desire to
    use. In order to win, you must have a minimum of three with the same symbol around the card.

    Should you agree that new world now or trade in helpful information on more cards first.
    Players may trade cards collectively with this trading card
    game. Poker games differ in accordance with the number
    of cards dealt with, number of shared cards (called community cards), and quantity of cards that remain hidden. You can understand game reviews and customer comments
    via this website. s more, the overall game requires no download, and is also for free
    to learn. Here are some with the higher play
    rules and variations you’ll encounter inside
    game. Online table games corresponds just exactly the same as
    to the classic casino table games offered in Las
    Vegas and other casinos round the world. s collection making
    your army strong, and rendering the opponent.

  43. Karry says:

    Hello, i think that i noticed you visited my weblog so i
    got here to return the favor?.I am attempting to find issues to
    improve my website!I guess its good enough to make use of
    some of your ideas!!

    my web blog after effects templates free download (Karry)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

top