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Re: [howardpubliced] Re: Fw: Re(2): Reservoir HS Game Plan

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  • Sue Medicus
    I agree with Debra, precisely what a Board member should do Sue Medicus ... -- Sue Medicus
    Message 1 of 4 , Feb 1, 2011
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      I agree with Debra, precisely what a Board member should do

      Sue Medicus

      On Mon, Jan 31, 2011 at 8:02 PM, Debra <debra4@...> wrote:
       

      Brian Meshkin said:
      We all need to be part of the solution, and not be standing on the side lines pointing fingers. This RHS community is craving leadership and we, as a Board, should 1) assure them publicly that we have heard their concerns, 2) inform them that we are working closely with staff to oversee the situation being analyzed and addressed and 3) ensure that we are bringing the appropriate community resources to bear on implementing a solution. Many of these community challenges will not be solved by an "educational" intervention. It's an unfair expectation of any principal or teacher for them to overcome the society in which they teach. We must lead by example and be part of the solution, and not just a critic, finger-pointer, or spectator. That's not what we've been elected to do.
      ===
      This is the most beautiful description of what I expect BOE members to do. Thank you for sharing this email with us, Allen!
      Debra


      --- In howardpubliced@yahoogroups.com, "Allen Dyer" <aldyer@...> wrote:
      >
      > f.y.i. board member brian meshkin gave me permission to forward the
      > following message which he had previously sent to student board member
      > adams. allen dyer
      >




      --
      Sue Medicus
    • parenthcpss
      Allen – thank you for thinking to share this with us. Brian – thank you for providing strong and thoughtful leadership.
      Message 2 of 4 , Feb 1, 2011
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        Allen – thank you for thinking to share this with us. Brian – thank you for providing strong and thoughtful leadership.

        --- In howardpubliced@yahoogroups.com, "Allen Dyer" <aldyer@...> wrote:
        >
        > f.y.i. board member brian meshkin gave me permission to forward the
        > following message which he had previously sent to student board member
        > adams. allen dyer
        >
        > Subject: Fwd: Re(2): Reservoir HS Game Plan
        > ----- Original Message from Brian Meskin -----
        >
        >
        > Dear Ms. Adams -
        >
        >
        > Thank you for responding to my email about Reservoir High School. Yes, some
        > of these issues were addressed in pre-submitted questions by concerned
        > parents, as well as questions raised at the Community Meeting last week.
        >
        >
        > I believe it should be noted that this meeting was held just days after the
        > Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday where we as a nation remember a great man
        > and his dream for our country. In Dr. King's words, "The ultimate measure
        > of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but
        > where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."
        >
        >
        > This is indeed one of those moments "of challenge and controversy" for
        > Reservoir High School and for us, the elected community leaders who have a
        > fiduciary responsibility to the taxpayers and voters, as well as a moral
        > obligation to the hopes and dreams of students who have attended, are
        > currently attending, and will attend Reservoir High School.
        >
        >
        > Throughout the campaign and since being elected, I have taken the
        > opportunity to learn about the situation from administrators, educators,
        > parents, and students. I live in the Reservoir community and think it's a
        > good school. Unfortunately, the dialogue has sometimes sunk to what can be
        > considered ad hominem statements about particular staff or parents that do
        > nothing to serve the greater common good. Personal attacks against an
        > administrator trying her best, or a concerned parent trying her best are not
        > "choosing civility". As Dr. King said, "The function of education is to
        > teach one to think intensively and to think critically... Intelligence plus
        > character - that is the goal of true education."
        >
        >
        > As a Board of Education, we must lead by example. Now is NOT the time to be
        > silent, but now is the time to act. We must think intensively and
        > critically, demonstrating intelligence plus character in how we address this
        > situation.
        >
        >
        > The issues raised are contained in the questions asked. They include
        > concerns that a vocal minority of parents may be tarnishing the reputation
        > of a principal and school, a principal may be over-suspending certain
        > minority students, a principal may be having a difficult time retaining
        > teachers, a school with two very distinct socio-economic populations may be
        > having a difficult time integrating and meeting the needs of those
        > populations, many low-income students must commute a sizable distance to
        > attend after school activities, there is a statistically significant higher
        > rate of teacher turnover and suspensions than at other schools of similar
        > student composition, etc. etc.
        >
        >
        > Unfortunately, these are not issues that just emerged within the most recent
        > school year and could be considered cyclical. These issues are chronic in
        > nature and more reflective of our community than any particular
        > administrator or parent. As community leaders we should be participants in
        > this dialogue and help unify our community to roll-up their sleeves and
        > help, instead of criticize. It's our community's school, not a particular
        > administrator's school.
        >
        >
        > We all need to be part of the solution, and not be standing on the side
        > lines pointing fingers. This RHS community is craving leadership and we, as
        > a Board, should 1) assure them publicly that we have heard their concerns,
        > 2) inform them that we are working closely with staff to oversee the
        > situation being analyzed and addressed and 3) ensure that we are bringing
        > the appropriate community resources to bear on implementing a solution. Many
        > of these community challenges will not be solved by an "educational"
        > intervention. It's an unfair expectation of any principal or teacher for
        > them to overcome the society in which they teach. We must lead by example
        > and be part of the solution, and not just a critic, finger-pointer, or
        > spectator. That's not what we've been elected to do.
        >
        >
        > I believe it's serendipitous that this meeting happened just days at MLK Day
        > and deals with some of the concerns he championed. Dr. King did not enact
        > the Civil Rights or Voting Rights Acts in the 1960's, but because of his
        > leadership, congress and the President did. He was a leader. That's what
        > we need to be now. As Board members, we should not be criticizing parents
        > or principals, but rather, we should be bringing people together to be an
        > active part of the solutions.
        >
        >
        > That's what I believe we need to discuss and that's what I believe the
        > community needs to hear.
        >
        >
        > Thanks,
        > Brian
        >
        >
        > :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
        > Brian Meshkin
        > Member, Howard County Board of Education
        > (Speaking as an individual member)
        > (v) 410-575-3070
        > (e) Brian_Meshkin@...
        > (w) www.hcpss.org www.BrianMeshkin.com
        > twitter @Meshkin
        > facebook.com/bmeshkin
        > ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
        >
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