This is a good starting point for a very difficult conversation. If RBA hires Bob Duffy and pretends that there was no "inside deal" that would not be true. First, Duffy bought Sandy Parker's lake home. The purchase was not reported even though a transaction between a registered lobbyist and Duffy was required and reviewed. Second, he is not able to lobby for two years. Third, when he got caught applying for the position by the Governor, she withdrew her resignation. Really...no inside deal?
How about the military taking over East! Now that would be reform!
Lets be clear about all of this.
#1. The U of R has not promised anything. All they did was say they would consider submitting a proposal if all of their mandates were approved, they got the time they apparently need along with the data, and their findings justify additional involvement.. This is all before they even submit.
#2. Why would others not be given the same extension? Why wouldn't Fisher, Nazareth or other local universities as well as other organizations from all around the country be given these same conditions? It is unethical and unprofessional for the board to even consider moving forward (assuming King gives them more time) with just the U or R in mind.
#3. What the U or R wants are the same things that committee after committee have said for twenty years. Bob King, Mayor Johnson, the August group members and many other prominent leaders as well as parents and community activists have all said that to change the path, the system must be broken down. This is nothing new. Why would the unions or anyone else essentially create a new playing field for the U of R when their own people can likely do tell the board the same thing?
#4. Who will pay for the U of R's research and planning? The letter indicates that they expect the RCSD to pick up the tab. That is crazy. What other group would be so arrogant?
#5. What does the U or R really know about helping tough, urban youth? I am not talking about research or evidence that support better meals. I am talking about jumping into the thick of things and getting your hands covered with %$#@!*&. The last I checked they were more into the intellectual side of things. That is not what this community needs.
Bottom line....Is it possible that the U or R can bring something to the table?-yes. But they can't expect the rest of the world to forget about the past and lay out the red carpet just because things are a disaster.
As one of the organizers of the Chill the Fill campaign, I'd offer that Bob's opposition to filling the subway tunnel during the '05 mayoral campaign (along with the other 4 candidates) was a major factor in causing City Council to stop Ed Doherty from moving forward.
So as folks retrospectively tally up Bob's pluses & minuses, in my mind that merits featuring in the plus column.
What is even more startling about the United States Global Change Research Program’s release of the National Climate Assessment, given the GOP’s reluctance to even admit warming is occurring, is that President Reagan began our country’s response to growing realization that global change, including Climate Change, were going to seriously challenge our country’s ability to prepare for the future.
“President Ronald Reagan created—and Congress in 1990 codified—the United States Global Change Research Program (USGCRP or Program), charged with providing a “comprehensive and integrated United States research program to assist the Nation and the world to understand, assess, predict, and respond to human-induced and natural processes of global change.”
THE NATIONAL GLOBAL CHANGE RESEARCH PLAN 2012–2021 http://downloads.globalchange.gov/strategi…
Vargas shared very little other than his opinion which was that he had little faith in the very proposal he was presenting. He essentially stated he was "directed" by the board to come up with it, so he did. His presentation was anything but hopeful.
Then you have the U of R asking everyone (including SED) to get on their knees. If everyone tells the U of R leaders what they want to hear then they might present an actual proposal. In other words, the U of R wants everyone to agree to their terms before they submit anything. They "proposed" nothing. The letter stated that they will not pay a thing to help and in fact, they want their own people compensated for their time. The seven pages looked more like an employee agreement than a genuine offer to help. It is telling that the board chair was salivating over the letter.
The sad fact is that everyone is going to believe that waiting a year will help-it won't. The changes and concessions that Turnaround, the U of R and every other organization will demand should have been agreed to 25 years ago. This is not rocket science. It is crazy that district leaders and board members have more faith in these "experts" than they do the teachers, parents and community members who are just as smart and are giving their souls everyday.
The article demands accountability. How about the same for all district personnel and their unions?
It's an interesting argument. Last time a similar argument came up, this happend: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/05/05…. I hope every religion gets a fare shot at the opening prayers.
(please disregard the source)
What they will do is downsize the school by transferring the underperforming students. Test results will improve but fall at the schools who received those kids.
Then the company will take credit for the East High improvement and use it to secure other contracts.
The District should not let them downsize. Let them show what they can do with the same kids. That would be interesting.
Essentially, then, we are creating one 700-student high school for those who can fulfill the promise for a 100 percent graduation rate and another 700 -student school for the kids who can't hack it. Nice for some; not so nice for others.
There is certainly not enough evidence presented here to form an opinion. Bill Johnson may be right but he could just as easily be wrong. Anyone who understands data analytics would also understand how easily these type of statistics can be manipulated to fit a personal agenda. There are two key points here: 1) As the article correctly points out, there is no context given to information presented. This data implies that taxes increased 1.3% on average per year in these communities. I don't have any facts to know if that is good or bad? 2) most importantly, this anti-casino "research" was sponsored by people that already own casinos (or racinos). Do we really think we can trust in unbiased results when the research is sponsored by a for profit company that would like to keep the competition from entering their market? How can anyone take seriously the case that "casinos are bad" when it comes from someone who currently runs a gambling business? Net-net, lets not jump to conclusions from data that is so likely to be biased by a personal agenda.
Former Rochester Mayor Bill Johnson should be listened to. He has evidence that casino developers were inflating promises. He's telling people to lower expectations. He's right!
It is amazing that the board is not only wasting their own time but also the time of parents, students and teachers who have been asked to participate in this. They all know that this has no chance. It may be politically correct to cry that "due diligence" is needed but not in this case. The proposal is laughable and everyone knows it. SED requires that the district consider multiple proposals. Any single one, no matter how good or bad id DOA. Adam Urbanski was right about this.
Why not spend your time on real alternatives? There is no time for this. Incredible, just incredible. If they had received a dozen, would they be spending this much time on each one? If so it would be June before a decision was made.
Let's not forget naming Junior - also a former Wilmorite "employee", to the County Legislature.
Gotta Say It:
There is some controversy about 690 St. Paul. The facility is shown as a Brownfield cleanup site on the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's website. Remedial work was done to the site to reduce potential problems, but public safety continues to be a concern for some people.
I thought that site was condemned or unfit for any kids. I know that the the RCSD looked at it a few years ago. I think they wanted to put kids from # 58 kids in there but I don't recall who. I do know there was a controversy and this made its way to the schools board. I also know that there were serious issues with it when it was c charter school (Science and Technology) Isn't that property designated a Brownsfield or contaminated site? You may want to look into this. I am shocked RCSD kids are there now but it might explain why the district is considering letting a charter use it. Maybe they know something the charter people don't.
Joe Morelle has become the ultimate Albany insider who now couldn't find his own constituent's district with both hands, let alone represent them. Morelle continues to support and be a part of the corrupt system which allowed Sheldon Silver (his boss) to pay out over $100,000 of NY taxpayers' dollars as hush money to the women who accused Vito Lopez of sexual assault. Morelle had nothing to say about Silver's actions. Now Silver taps Morelle for Assembly Majority Leader. Hmmmmm. With people like Morelle in Albany its no surprise nothing is being done about corruption there.
One of the questions we should address, along with the wonderful efforts to collect unused prescription drugs, is: what percentage of the pharmaceuticals in our waters are we actually stopping by these collections?
These drugs we take enter our waters in various ways, mostly though us. Are we designing our wastewater treatment systems to both remove these drugs before they enter our waters and before we turn on the tap?
They should be delivered to doctors to enable them to give them to indigent people, as long as they're not expired.
Perhaps Joe's real legacy is his lack of accomplishment. No state money for Rochester, while he is majority leader. Party division while he is chair. Killing Ren. Sq. Causing state investigations of people for political purposes. Awarding Midtown redevelopment to a company his sister works for even though they could not do the deal. Trying to kill Medley in his district to the benefit of Wilmorite. And on and on. Perhaps some day, someone will investigate his motives.
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