Sunday, January 28, 2024

Like the New Intro to Livestreamed Board Meetings?

This afternoon I decided to check the length of last Tuesday's School Board Meeting. The January 23, 2024 board meeting length is recorded as 4:43:04. Assuming it started with the Executive Session at 5:30PM, the meeting didn't end until 10:13PM!

Did they accomplish anything important?

What shocked me was the new filler that precedes the board meeting. Watch it here or by going to livestream.com/richland2 and selecting the January 23 meeting.

There is no introduction to what you see at the beginning of the recording, and there is no button to advance past the recognition of long-time employees. It's almost like one of those endless infomercials.

If you wait long enough, the opening of the 5:30PM public session is at 4:09 on the recording. After the board enters executive session, a banner is added that the board meeting will resume after the executive session concludes. The public session resumes at 1:07:26.

A question: How much did the District spend to produce that filler?

Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Tonight's Agenda

I just received a text from a friend, and he had assumed I'd be going to tonight's Richland 2 School Board meeting.

So I looked at the agenda and shook my head in disgust. What a total waste of time! Of everybody's time.

Policy Proposal JLIG - Sun Safety. Seriously? The District is wasting time on a policy about sun safety and using sunscreen?

No wonder school grades and student failure-to-progress are so dismal.

And "Gavin's Law" for staff and students. There are laws on the books for that stuff. Are Board Policies really necessary?

If the School Board is going to give adequate time to all those items on tonight's agenda, the meeting should be over by dawn. 

I remember my first school board meeting in 2018, right after the shootings in Parkland, Fla. Craig Plank was the board president. I think that meeting was about 60-90 minutes long. That's all!

I urge the school board to deal with important matters - like educating the students to graduate with the skills they need for life and for further education. Cut out all the drivel. Richland 2 must be trying to out-do the Federal Government with wasted efforts, time, and policies.

Thursday, January 18, 2024

Post and Courier's article about Supt's contract

The Post and Courier published an "interesting" article today about the superintendent's contract.

I had read the superintendent's contract several months ago, after it was texted to me. I didn't save it.

From memory, I recall that there was to be an evaluation within four (maybe six) months, and then the Board would decide whether to extend the contract for a year. I recall thinking at the time, "WHY?"

My opinion was the contract provision resulted from poor negotiations by Richland 2. They were under the gun to hire somebody fast, because they lost the first three months after Baron left in January. The negotiating team was behind the curve. They were not in the strong position in which an employer usually finds it. And why would the legal advice to the District ever agree with that provision?

The superintendent's contract is a personnel issue. Why did the article have comments from two board members? 

Will an evaluation occur "in the fall"? Historically, since the superintendent's contract runs from July 1-June 30, there would be a review before the end of the School Year (June 30), and a contract amendment, if there were to be one, at that time.

Angela Nash's gushing comment about the superintendent ("So far we've had such a great working experience with Dr. Moore") weakens any position of the Board, should it decide not to extend the contract when it enters its second year. That would have been better unsaid.

Monday, January 15, 2024

Martin Luther King, Jr.

What do today's students, and many adults, know about Martin Luther King, Jr.?

That today was his birthday?

That he gave a speech?

That he marched?

That he was killed?

Do they know any details?

Jason Riley, Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute, tells us about Dr. King in the 5-minute video from PragerU.

I was fortunate to hear Dr. King speak. On October 15, 1962 he spoke at Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa. I sat at the left end of the first row in front of the stage. The podium was about 20 feet from me. I didn't meet him that day or shake his hand. I liked what I heard.

If you'd like to know what he said that day, you can read his words here.

Saturday, January 13, 2024

Grade Card for the District. How say you?

What is the general feeling about results being produced by the Richland 2 School Board since November 2022?

They've been busy. Lots of meetings. What are the results?

Have significant steps been taken to improve the academic results of students? Will students be better qualified for further education or work at the time of graduation? Granted, change in that category is like turning a battleship. But has the rudder moved?

Are the right people in place to produce a positive result?

Have attendance rates improved?

Have disciplinary actions gone down? What's happening with discipline? Are changes in the wind? What type of changes? What is being done to instill the concept of higher personal responsibility in students?

What's going on with DEI? (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) Is that still a huge consideration? Or has Richland 2 come to the conclusion that Accomplishment and Merit are more important than the woke ideas of DEI?

How is employee morale? Up? Down? Unchanged? On a scale of 1-10, where is morale - on the average? Is it high? Low? Why?

Does every employee have a clear job description that is not just HR boilerplate? Are employee expectations clear? Attainable?

I know that, for many of the job openings I explored in the business world, one look at the Job Description caused me to wonder how many people were going to be hired to do that (one) job.

Friday, January 12, 2024

Your School Has a New Principal

 


What if, today, your school had a new principal? As nice as your principal was, that person is gone. When you arrived today, your first class was in the auditorium, and this is what you heard.

Teachers, parents, students, what do you think?

Friday, January 5, 2024

Richland 2's DEI program could be this

 


What if this were Richland 2's DEI program? Here's an old (1996) video with Dennis Prager and Larry Elder.

This was mentioned on a 2019 Fireside Chat (#100), when Dennis' guest was Allen Estrin, co-founder of PragerU. 

If you aren't a fan of Dennis Prager yet, check out www.prageru.com for the Fireside Chats (30 minutes on Thursdays) and many 5-minute videos and other videos.

Character and abilities are important - more so than gender, race, ethnicity.