Re: Separate and Unequal: Fund-raisers give schools an edge
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- Subject: Re: Separate and Unequal: Fund-raisers give schools an edge
- From: Rick Parkany <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Wed, 18 Jun 2003 11:03:59 -0400
- Cc: email@example.com
- Organization: Prometheus Educational Services
- References: <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Peter: we went round & round on this one in Schenectady, NY last decade...it
seems some schools on the North side had wildly active and affluent families,
plenty of time on their hands, and wanted to raise money for a NEW playground that
would be in compliance w/present industry *safety* standards...
I and a whole bunch of my friends who championed social justice issues in our work
and school board politics were labeled *child haters* because we, along with a
progressive board we established shortly after a major *neighborhood
schools*-based reorganization resulted in two of our schools (*On th' Hill) had
some 90% of at risk students enrolled in the district (11 ely schools, w/ pop'n of
the city < 50K meant we effectively lived in ONE neighborhood in Sch'dy--I've SEEN
Boston &, Folks! Sch'dy ain't no BOSTON!), as a board and vocal community of
supporters, we insisted that NO curriculum components in ANY elementary school
would be approved w/o applying all such *funds* raised to a *general fund* whereby
some schools *On th' Hill* could, thereby, afford even a bare playground grass
space, their own playgrounds built after WWII having been paved over a few decades
ago for staff parking lots during the *War on Poverty* (Wars are conducted against
people, not Ideas, BTW, so this was really a *War on Poor People*--just look at
any downtown RustBelt, USA city for further illustratives of this motif.
In others words, we committed the board to turn down such *targetted*money rather
than putting the curriculum out for *piece work* bids and other such *sweatshop
funding* models and industrialized design gimmicks, (sort of like the way Willys
used to job out the Jeep design in the 50s, letting out all the contracts for
parts each year to exteranal manufacturers (GM, Ford, Chrysler, Studebaker, etc.)
for a design that rarely changed and mereley assembled the cheapest parts bid each
year, etc.--and theay paid their workers the worst contract in the auto workers
unions, as well)...
After The Sch'dy progressive board we worked to elect had been replaced by a
reactionary one, a majority on the board having been reclaimed by an election
campaign managed and financed by goons from the local Dem/Rep ward hacks' minions
(these reactionaries can *get out th' vote* for schools elections any time they
need to: the question is simply with what lies will they rile their stalwards to
react)...after regaining a bigotted majority on the board the year my family began
receiving disturn\bing phone calls (we lived in the neighborhoods in which I
taught and were a $20 crack hit away from getting a gunshot through our front
window on Vovtory Avenue) and after having effectively dissolved the award-winning
Magent Program and dismissing its director, my mentor and the late Dr. Colleen
Fennel (may she rest in peace, hounded to her untimely death she was by *Change
New Yorkists* on her board as Super of Lansingburg schools)...
...AFTER all this, the Sch'dy district *lost* some $4M one year, and used that
very excuse--that the Superintendent couldn't account for $4M (on a ~$70M budget
base)--the same year before StateEd, and claimed the district coundn't afford an
additional $4M loss in per diem funding a proposed charter school *On th' Hill*
managed by a local board headed by church and community leaders would bring to the
Thank God! the district LOST its appeal to NYSDoEdn a few years ago when the
first charter schools were let out in NYS (and maybe these will be the last as the
$$$ have been drastically cut for charter management/support offices @ the state
level for this *sweet deal* negotiated by Dr. Leo's AFT pals and Gov. Cold
SixPacki ONE that, BYW, seems to be running out...) after Sch'dy lost its absurd
bid to NYS Regents to manage its own charter school! DO YOU HEAR ME? they
actually proposed to manage the charter school, itself,
WELL! Refreshing Springs CoGiC Church, bless them! HAS its International School
today, AND the Super who, by mean spirited lies & deceit, kept me from
participating in any research in the Sch'dy schools by proclaimation to professors
engaged in contracts w/the district for technology improvement plans shortly after
I began my doctroral studies, lost his job OR left it shortly thereafter, AND from
what I hear, is making much $$$ consulting around here and there in NYS as we
Crazy world! ;-} rap.
Peter Farruggio wrote:
> Part three of the series on "Savage Inequalities" running in the Oakland
> Article Last Updated: Wednesday, June 18, 2003 - 6:11:15 AM PST
> Separate and Unequal: Fund-raisers give schools an edge
> Fund-raisers pay for things poorer facilities have to cut
> By Jill Tucker and Robert Gammon, STAFF WRITERS
> FORGET bake sales.
> Menlo Park Elementary School parents have raised more than $900,000 for the
> district's four schools this year mostly from their annual auction -- the
> equivalent of about $450 per student.
> In Piedmont, several fund-raisers bring in about $1.3 million each year, or
> about $500 per student.
> Woodside parents also raise about $1.3 million, a whopping $3,000 for each
> child -- through donation request letters and phone calls as well as an
> Gone are the days when parents baked a batch of cookies for new band
> uniforms or extra books for the library.
> These days, a variety of fund-raisers, including glitzy auctions, charity
> running races, local cable telethons, dinners, raffles and outright
> requests for cash mean big bucks for some schools districts -- money that
> not only pays for library books, but the librarians, too.
> That discretionary money has meant the difference between keeping or
> cutting art, music, textbooks or even teachers in those districts,
> especially when the economy calls for cutbacks, as is currently the case.
> But not all parents can pump millions into their local public schools.
> The disparity in donations has resulted in students from higher-income
> areas receiving a public education often worth hundreds or thousands of
> dollars more than their low-income counterparts.
"Dein Wachstum sei feste und lache vor Lust!
Deines Herzens Trefflichkeit
Hat dir selbst das Feld bereit',
Auf dem du bluehen musst." JS Bach: Bauern Kantata
Richard A. Parkany: SUNY@Albany
Prometheus Educational Services
Upper Hudson & Mohawk Valleys; New York State, USA
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