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Date Posted: 10:27:03 12/20/08 Sat
Author: Donald F. Valtman
Subject: Re: Maybe someone can explain this
In reply to: Larry 's message, "Maybe someone can explain this" on 07:49:47 12/20/08 Sat

Larry:

I respectfully suggest that what you're 'missing' is the vast differences between where you, Wilbanks/BoE and teacher organizations are coming from.

You're coming from a parental position that IE2's singular purpose is to improve the academic achievement of GCPSS students; whereas Wilbanks, the BoE and teacher organizations are coming from diverse, self-serving positions.

Unfortunately IE2 won't improve student academic achievement anymore than earlier state mandates did. You can't ask for any more compelling evidence that earlier state mandates failed than the education establishment regurgitating still another 'improve-student-academic-achievement ' program that cancels-out the original mandates that were supposed to 'improve-student-academic-achievement!

Wilbanks/BoE apparently have concluded that their traditional whining about the state not coming up with more education funding won't garner any votes next election while taxpayers are being laid off by the thousands. But IE2 has three specific advantages in this regard: if GCPSS's application is approved (1) it's a legal way to reduce the labor portion of GCPSS's operating budget, (2) Wilbanks/BoE anticipate they can influence the State Education Department into 'watering down' any 'improve-student-academic-achievement' goals along with any penalties for not meeting the 'watered down' goals, and (3) even if they can't do so totally to their satisfaction, Wilbanks and the current BoE members don't expect to be around 5 years from now to answer to parents for yet another failed 'improve-student-academic-achievement' program.

Teacher organizations/advocates -- simply stated -- are concerned about job and benefits protection! If IE2 actually demonstrated that teacher aides working in auditorium size classes just produced equal -- not necessarily better -- results to senior teachers working in small size classes, that would 'blow away' their raison d'etre.

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