Las Vegas Sun

April 1, 2015

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Letter to the editor:

Local options exist for superintendent

Another view?

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In her letter, “Could Hsieh’s style work for schools?” Terri Robertson wrote: “During my 30 years with the Clark County School District, I had the opportunity to work with principals Fenton Tobler, Ron Fagan and David Harcourt. These men, in their administrative roles, valued their employees.”

Here is my list: Dr. David Price, Clarence Ehler, Margarita Garcia, Kristie Cole and Reggie Farmer. It doesn’t take much to just ask the teachers who have taught in the district for at least 10 years to help find a great superintendent. School Board members Linda Young and Erin Cranor seem to understand this. The rest of the School Board needs to listen to what they have to say. They understand that a school is as good as its administration.

There are many more administrators out there who know how to bring the community and the teachers together. I have seen wonderful, hard-working teachers and administrators who have helped children in the School District become good students and valued citizens. And, yes, they are right here.

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  1. The test for a new Super, local or not, is whether he/she support school vouchers, home schooling and charter schools. If they don't support one or all, then they are white washed by the school unions and their own public school interests. Rather than putting students and their educational achievement first.

    Carmine D

  2. Sir Ken Robinson, in Ted Talks, brought into the open 'the horrifying demon that has crept into our school system threatening to violently derail social progress.'

    Sadly, it is true. Anyone who is even mildly interested in the education of our children will notice the cancer that has now metastasized in our school system, around the country, if not the world.

    The demons are the powers-that-be who dictate public policy and controls it through the media, which they own. This is all done through insidious manipulation to place the blame on schools and teachers while they do not have to take any responsibility.

    First they set the policies, control the production and distribution of 'educational' materials, and create 'assessment' tools that set up children for failure. They mass-produce violent and asinine computer and video games and TV shows, which reduce our children into automatons who cannot think for themselves or focus on academics. They pay people to stir-up negative opinions against the school system, lobby for reduction of funding, marginalize teachers, decertify employees collective rights, then declare schools and teachers as failures.

    Their manipulation has now resulted in a situation that makes 'education' ripe for their picking. Public opinion now demands that 'someone' should take charge and BINGO! They take control of the billion-dollar industry and now itching and slobbering to implement their own version of commercialized and privatized education ALL financed by the government. Administrators are so afraid for their own jobs that they become accomplices to these fallacious 'reforms.'

    And, the sheeples take it hook, line, and sinker.

    NOT SO FAST! There are many of us who still believe in children and we will not allow your filthy hands to touch them and their future. Yes. You may control everything, but there are still many of us who will do everything we can to protect them.

    We are their parents and their teachers.

  3. Not to paint all potential candidates with a broad brush, everyone should read the article in today's RJ detailing the abysmal math test scores of high school sophomores.

  4. Good letter. As a practical matter it is always best to look in-house for promotion and leadership. Looking and hiring outside clearly indicates that succession plans have not been implemented or followed or that the organization is so bad that existing leadership lacks competence.

    @Jim....Over the past several years the exam has been made more difficult and last year the passing score was raised from [I believe] 240 to 300. Given that neither instruction nor the skills/knowledge/motivation of students has changed it is not surprising that pass rates plummeted. Most mathematics classes at the high school level are taught in the abstract, having little practical or useful relationship to everyday needs of students. I taught auto/diesel/welding and found that students who passed the mathematics proficiency could not measure, could not differentiate between metric and fractional notation, could not compute financial information, etc. What value is a subject if it has no application to the real world. I'm not saying don't teach higher level mathematics, lord knows it is a critical subject. I'm saying that the majority of students will never use that level of mathematics, do not understand that level of mathematics and their time and talent is wasted. Two to three years of practical application is all that is necessary for most students.

  5. Who will take a stand? We hope it is those who have the most to lose here. Our local community, state, and country, depend upon those who are willing to pick up the banner to proclaim what is their right to maintain, and others will respect that.

    Who has that right? A parent has that right, to look out for, advocate, and defend on behalf of their child(ren). Might I add, the teachers are also included, being, in essence, "en parentis loco" for a child on behalf of the absent parent while at school. Where is THEIR power?

    Their power has been systematically stripped away, through hidden agendas, covert activities, marginalizing, and bullying. To add insult to injury, Lawmakers for decades supported a plan to not adequately support the infrastructure upon which WE ALL rely upon, including the children.

    The People are looking for, hoping for, a Champion Superintendent, who feels the same earth, breaths the same air, and is affected by the same problems as they are, and has not only a vision for a functional, safe, and productive school district for now and in the future, but has the courage to stay and get the job done, and not leave until it is done!

    The business industry does not want to hire an individual who adds 2+2 and gets 5 and thinks that is a "reasonable answer". No, they look for employees who can do accurate computations and have a balanced til and ledger at the end of their shifts. Educators, just as parents, are responsible for insuring they are providing and delivering the necessary education to prepare each student for the future (which changes daily, and is not static). Teachers remind students that what they learn today will be some part of their job tomorrow, so get it right. This kind of "tough love" is what sets up a child for excellence in their lives, to get it, and do their best.

    We need leadership that understands these basic things, the needs of the people it serves, the needs of the community, and has the business and political savy to navigate through the waters and get the job done successfully. Let us pray for such people.

    Blessings and Peace,

  6. The letter writer is correct we should consider local candidates for the job for CCSD superintendent. We have tried a few different school superintendents from different parts of the country,with no change in the direction of where we need to be.

    The local news says it all two-thirds of Clark County School District sophomores failed the state's proficiency exam this year.That is a new low for first time test-takers in recent history.

    Time to consider all possible candidates for the job of superintendent not just outside sources.We can't get much lower than we are now. Being ranked #50 for school performance in the country needs to change.Everything and everybody should be a consideration.

  7. CCSD students and teachers need and deserve the best Super for the money. And the search for the best Super is not limited to Clark County alone. It should encompass the whole of the USA. The larger the scope and number of candidates sought and interviewed, the better the possibly of CCSD getting the best Super available.

    Carmine D

  8. "Carmine.....

    Public schools come first.

    The vast majority of kids go to public schools.

    The last thing we need to worry about are private
    schools for rich republican kids."

    BULL. Public Schools are last. That's why there are private schools. And if the rich pay for their kids to go to private schools they shouldn't have to pay for them not to go to public schools. AND I am a product of public schools. Newark NJ. At a time when they were the best, even better than the private. No longer the case. The State took over the Newark public school system as well as others.

    Carmine D

  9. We have had the best superintendents that money can buy in the past. And the only thing we accomplished was to slip down a notch to become the lowest performing school district in the country.

  10. Then I would argue CCSD didn't have the best [Super]. We had what we thought was the best and we were wrong. That doesn't mean we stop trying [looking for and getting the best Super]. That means we TRY HARDER the next time.

    Carmine D