Eighth Graders Ask, Does the School Board Listen?

Yesterday, I was one of many Authors that spoke as part of Farragut Middle Schools first Authors’ Days. In speaking to the class of Eighth graders several questions were asked about the coverage of Brian’s Blog surrounding the discussion the School Board had about the school calendar. The question was asked if I believed the school board listens to students, faculty or parents. The questioner went on to say that as a class they researched the idea of year round school. The students sent letters expressing their support for the week long fall break in October and the school board didn’t respond and instead voted to eliminate the week long fall break.

In response, I said a majority of the school board does NOT listen, instead they vote in a 5-6 vote majority block on nearly every issue. I informed the class that I am reserving judgement on Dr. McIntyre. Because Dr. McIntyre is still relatively new, he has been responsive to Brian’s Blog and I believe it will take him some time to learn whose with him and whose against him. Ultimately, I have hope in McIntyre to identify the good ole boy/girl network and cut it it out at the roots.

I explained how in the four years when I was on the board that I was the first board member to go out to each of the schools in my district at least once a year and conduct an open town hall meeting where anyone can come and address issues, publicly or confidentially. It is interesting to see that Karen Carson at the last workshop is considering the same exact format, six years later.

However, the bottom line is that there are work horses that do the work day in and day out and there are show horses, that show up simply to collect a check and pat themselves on the back. We need more work horses to work day in and day out with Dr. McIntyre to improve our school system. Not people that are gonna just show up at press conferences for school shootings/swine flu to give themselves more visibility for future campaigns.

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