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Monday, January 14, 2013

Look, honey, we'll be getting a new McMenamin's

The Portland public school bureaucrats rearrange the deck chairs once again tonight.

Meanwhile, an exasperated reader writes:

It amazes me how much time, money, and energy PPS pours into Jefferson and its feeder schools. Enrollment figures as of Oct. 1, 2012 showed enrollment at Jeff. High, for all four grades, at 448. The cost per student that gets spent is amazing. PPS has two or three high schools too many. Wonder why Jeff is never slated for closure?

What an incorrect question to ask.

Comments (13)

The simple fix would have been to end the transfer policy. You live in the boundary lines, you go to neighborhood school or opt to pay for school. Period. We know that the transfer policy has been tacit re-segregation of Portland Public Schools. Diversity issue? Solved. And the equity issue would resolve itself beceause little Schuyler and Madison's parent would not tolerate the lack of resources and class offerings. Jefferson has some years, not even had a college counselor. The kids at my kid's Title I Jefferson feeder wouldnt even go to Jeff presentation when they were 8th graders. Because Jeff spelled doom to them.

Jefferson is often put on the closure table. ANd then the press conferences are held, and some well-heeled members of African American community stand in front of microphones and plead for a school they would never allow their child to attend to stay open. Some may or may not have contracts for PPS to provide "support services" to the Jefferson cluster. Cameras gone, benign neglect continues.

I know people believe that Jefferson and its feeder schools are full of resources. Where the boots meet the street, not-so-much. Compare the resources of a daVinci Art Middle and Ockley Green's Arts magnet. My kid attended both. Parents had to pay for costumes for their child to be in performances at Ockley, while daVinci had a wealth of resources that were not shared.

I hate PPS. Five years out, that hasn't changed.

It's just haunch, but my gut tells me that too many experimental educational and political/sociological games have been played in that neighborhood in the name of equity and inclusion. In neighborhoods that aren't struggling with identity issues the focus has pretty much remained on education. Involved parents have made sure a great education is a priority, monitoring the quality of curriculum and instruction their children receive and making sure their kids perform up to grade level. Maybe parents are removing their kids for a better education elsewhere. Maybe the neighborhood just doesn't have enough teenagers with all the Millennials moving in.

School enrollment is going down all over the state, not just in Portland, and all districts have to make adjustments. But if the district can provide more and better resources to the students at a different school, then the school should be closed. Whatever happens to the school, the EDUCATION of Portland's students comes first.

And the most recent


Following a flood of protests from parents and charter supporters, the Los Angeles Unified board on Tuesday soundly rejected a resolution seeking a voluntary moratorium on new charter applications,,,

,,, the district's charter system, which now educates some 110,000 students and has thousands more on waiting lists.

But parents and charter supporters saw his resolution as a challenge to their right to choose the appropriate school for their child, with speakers sharing personal stories of how charters had changed their lives.

"You shouldn't just vote against the resolution," said parent Katrina George, whose son struggled at a traditional school but thrived once he was enrolled in a charter. "You should do the opposite and open more charters. At the end of the day, this should be about the kids."

Parents signed petitions and as many as 2,000 demonstrators flooded the street in front of LAUSD during a lunchtime protest.

Board members Tamar Galatzan and Nury Martinez admonished Zimmer that he could not work around Proposition 39, the voter-approved measure that requires school districts to accommodate space requests from independent charters.

"Ten years ago, voters approved Prop. 39," Martinez said. "To continue to have these debates when you know what the law is polarizes hundreds of thousands of parents ... Be done with it, Mr. Zimmer."

When I attended Benson HS many of my fellow students were fleeing schools such as Jefferson and Adam's.
Even as young teens we recognised those schools were not going to provide an education that would be useful.

I didn't realize Benson taught how to spell like a Brit. Was that offered as a second language?

Only a racist would ask for the closure of Jefferson.

Ben -- if you're going to use ",,," you might as well stick with one fake name.

ConcordBridge: Yup and not have a clue why it so offensive to those of us who live in neighborhood.

What is the correct question to ask? No, sarcasm intended. It is just that we have been asking questions about Jefferson for as long as I've been in the Portland area. We seem to be running out of new questions that we can come up with different answers for.

Disclaimer: I'm not in the PPS district anymore.

The use of the term 'cluster' so often in this city, and without a hint of irony, kills me. Just kills me.

Methinks that it would be politically incorrect to close Jefferson, desirable as that may be.

The question should be, parents, where do you want your kids to go to school?

The answer should be, OK.

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