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May levy

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acclaro View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 15 2010 at 4:50pm
Opposition to Motion to Strike, as Middletown's performance indeed has shown no meaningful statistical performance and has been in continuos progress mode for years. Indeed, while I haven't evaluated every county nor school district in Ohio, I believe this rating is among the lowest, as the State has eliminated I believe most of, if not all, Academic Watch entities.
 
As for either of the two programs, Toledo by the way, was one Dr. Price had referenced, have not germinated as you correctly state. The rationale was clearly associated with the benefits cloaked to the effort to gain the benefit of the land you refer. As there were no benefits to the students as the language requires, that could not possibly yielded a positive outcome as the trier of fact determined, and upheld upon appeal.
 
Finally, I cannot statistically county the retention of Mr. Lambaugh nor Mr. Smith out of the >300 students whom graduate correlating with an ROI in the Middletown dustrict in terms of income nor numbers. And, the perpetal cycle of "open enrollment" continues, although I would have considerable difficukty comprehending the numbers being of import or significance an suspect the high school in particular, is seeing a decline in enrollment. Middletown has a dropout rate > 20%, among the highest in the state of Ohio, and at a level which the trend is not moving in a positive direction. 
 
The real solution to the dreadful performance is state vouchers, where parents can send their students to John XXIII, Fenwick, or other private institutions including Middletown Christian Academy. Of course, the power of the Ohio Teachers Union and NEA lobbyists will prevent that from becoming a practical reality.   .        
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 15 2010 at 7:10pm

Ms. Andrew:

Thank you for your response.

You state:

"Mr. Presta's comparison to other simularly situated districts as selected by the ODE is more relevant (although those socioeconomic statistics are not always clearly comparable, either). Looking at the Performance Index Score data he posted, Middletown is definitely not at the bottom of that group."

I have two comments on that.

First, I want to point out that it is the Ohio Department of Education that selects both the “twenty most socio-economically situated districts” (out of all 612 in our state) and the “Performance Index” as a measure of comparison, and not I.

Am I incorrectly inferring that you see the MCSD’s rank near the bottom these last three years as some sort of anomaly? From past research, I recall this to be untrue, but I will reserve further comment until I have time to do the appropriate research.

Next, in your post you state:

"This levy will not increase your taxes" means what it says.
Your tax RATE will not increase. …”

Now you state:

“Also yes, the tax rate for the fixed amount levy could fluctuate slightly, …”

It appears to me that you are moving closer to what I see as “the TRUTH.” With further research, I suggest that you will find that “the tax rate could fluctuate slightly” means “the tax rate could rise 4% per year, every year” under certain circumstances!

Next, regarding my “doomsday example of AK going bankrupt”! It seems that you missed my point. First, recall that I cautioned “As an absurd example (used only to illustrate this point)”. I guess I should have continued by musing that the City would buy bankrupt AK’s property for a buck for redevelopment, thereby removing it from the tax rolls, but, once again, this was a hypothetical, absurd example to illustrate a point!

The point is that thousands of homes have gone through foreclosure in the past year or two in Middletown. I believe that thousands more may do the same in the next year or so. (Call me a pessimist if you like, or, call me a realist.) The City is buying as many as it can. I believe that the City would try to buy the Towne Mall property, if it could, as they believe they know better than all of the professional developers in the world.

This, or other government intervention, would take property OFF the tax rolls. The school district will still want the $18.3 million, and will have the authority to tax the remaining “current properties” for the entire $18.3 million.

Are you now saying that the MCSD is NOT going to do this and will NOT tax for the entire $18.3 million as properties fall from the tax rolls?

Finally, thank you for your kind explanation about the “Value Added” measure. Did you know that everything you explained (and more) is also available to concerned citizens on the ODE website? What I don’t understand, and would be pleased for you to explain, is how the Value Added program can be used to meet the implied challenge in your words:

“Apparently you have not studied the proficiency scores for other districts with comparable socioeconomics…” from your post of 12 Mar 2010 at 1:26pm.

Or from your statements from your post earlier this afternoon:

“I do realize that the comparison that many of you want to make (encouraged by the Journal) is to the surrounding school districts. I have tried to suggest that this is not a fair comparison, because none of these districts has the socioeconomic problems Middletown has. Even the towns you describe as Poor and Poorer have nowhere near the percentage of students who qualify for free and reduced lunch as does Middletown (over 70% now).”

Once again, thank you for your time and attention.

Best personal regards,

MDP

“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mike_Presta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 15 2010 at 7:16pm
Ms. Andrew:
My preceding post sounds harsh.  I did not intend it to be so.
My goal is to get the TRUTH out in front of the people.
Then, they can decide on May 4th!
 
“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 15 2010 at 7:23pm
I would vote no if this were an increase or if they wanted to build a new high school.  I plan on voting yes because I think slashing funding does not in any way benefit the students or the educational process (such as it is).  Now if you believe the process should change then that is a matter for a school board and your time would be better spent finding new board candidates who want to try something different.  
 
I appreciate Ms. Andrews' explanations and effort but was a bit disappointed in the hiring of the new Super.  I  would be inclined to support more drastic action at this point -- perhaps a specialist in struggling urban districts or something similar to the drastic Rhode Island example mentioned above.  I'm not convinced that Mr. Rasmussen is much more than a capable, competent administrator.  We need more than that right now. 
 
As as aside, how flexible are the salary parameters for the superintendent?  I wouldn't object to MCSD spending $150k if we knew we were getting a top tier candidate.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pacman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 15 2010 at 7:43pm
{quote]I do realize that the comparison that many of you want to make (encouraged by the Journal) is to the surrounding school districts.[/quote}
 
Mrs. Andrews it is not a matter of what I WANT to use as a comparison. it is a matter of what the real world uses as a comparison.  The average citizen does not compare Middletown to Akron, Dayton and Cinci, etc. They compare local districts where they want to live.
 
Now in the world of Education you compare similar districts which is fine for your purposes, but not for the real world.
 
If Middletown obtained 15 out of 30 indicators that would be cause for celebration and a thumbs up.Thumbs%20Up
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gemneye70 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 9:08am
I agree with bill.
 
I don't understand Hermes wanting his own levy...
 
Everyone wants perfect schools, but no one wants to pay for it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 9:29am
gemeye70- Tough call here. I don't want to pay more property taxes to support a continuously poor performing school district. But, in order for the schools to make an attempt to improve performance, they say they need more money to operate and adopt new techniques (?) to help the improvement. It's a vicious cycle.

The only thing that I have observed is that we have had our share of levy rejects and passages and in the last 20 years or so, the schools have had less success in educating the kids than before. The school folks (including Ms. Andrew) offer the fact that the demographics of the town has changed from a middle class working town where parents watched what their kids did in school and participated in the education process, valuing education as a means to have a better life, and a sizable percentage of Middletown today is comprised of lower income people who don't value educational achievement at all and don't participate in their kids education. Too many problems of their own to deal with the kid's problems at school. However, knowing that that has been the situation for the last 20 years, why haven't the schools made the proper adjustments in the schools? Just when we need MORE discipline in the schools for more kids that need to be taken down a peg or two, the schools decide to disband any deterrent to poor behavior in the classroom. Don't know what the schools have done to address the absent parent and working with the legal system to include the courts and police in hauling the parents into court to get them right. If they haven't attempted to work with the legal system as yet, I would ask why not? JMO
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pacman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 10:29am
gemeye70 just how much do we need to pay for 5 out of 30 indicators.  I would like perfect but would settle for 15 out of 30.  Currently Middletown spends $11674.00 per year per student when you add Local, State and Federal funds together.  I would say this is probably one of the highest per student expenditures in the State of Ohio Public School System.
 
For some interesting stats on the Middletown School system go here and play with the reports available from the state of Ohio:
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 10:58am
VietVet- you are defeating or contradicting your own initial argument. You state rather consistently that the city of Middletown leaders have allowed too much section 8, lowering socio-economic factors and testing. How will passing the levy then help, does that somehow absorb or turn-around this factor? Of course not.
 
In reality, evaluate the enormity of the overhead in MCSD, and all distrcits in Ohio. Multiple Assistant Superintendants, a Communication Director (PR)- this just floors me, the accounting people. This is a system laden with overhead.
 
Go ahead and throw money at a renewal, it certainly won't turn the system around. My goodness, they seem to have gotten along just fine in the the year they will have no superintendant. The school and its failures, are not associated with demographics, although arguably, one would expect Williams College to have better performing students who recievd 30 or above on ACT's than Wright State, but students still must want to learn.
 
I for one, am exhausted of the excuses. One gets an education to lift one out of poverty, and the rich go because Mom and Dad pay for it, including law or medical school, and that beats the hell out of working and pushing a shovel. The levy should fail.     
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 12:04pm
acclaro- I have not contradicted nor changed my stance on my opinion of this school system nor this upcoming levy. I will repeat my stance in stating that I will not vote to approve an operational levy for a failing school system. I don't believe in throwing more money at an educational system with the lack of success that the Middletown schools have demonstrated. They may have tried different techniques and procedures in the schools as Ms.Andrew has mentioned, but we have not seen any notable, measureable results for years. We are still at 5 of 30 indicators and have been for years. We are still low on the list of achievement in all grades in all categories as noted in published reports. In my post, if you read it again, I said that the school folks use the poor community/Section 8 overpopulation as a reason that they haven't been able to produce better results. This "poor community/Section 8/ low income/HUD/welfare" situation didn't pop up overnight. I merely asked the question- if we have known that we have had a problem with these things, why are we still trying to find a solution after all these years. Where's the urgency for change? Now, for clarity, I have declared that I do not support the levy, and, that IF the reason for the poor performance (coming from the school people, not me) is the "pooring down" of the community with all the low income Section 8 the city insists on having, why haven't the schools developed a plan, complained or offered some resistance to combat the sources of their dilemmas???? Why haven't they re- introduced the corporal punishment system to deal with all the trouble makers that traditionally/ stereotypically come from the low income environment? Why haven't they had the habitual kid removed from the classroom, contacted the legal authorities and involved the parents in the court system? If they have already done so, apparently it ain't working and needs to be revisited more quickly than has been done in the past.

Has been a complaint for years on my part about the top heavy admin. positions in this district. Too many assistants to the assistants. Don't need a Director of Hallways, Director of Coffee Cups, etc.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pacman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 12:43pm
Vet Corporal Punishment was banned by law, signed by Strickland, in July of  2009.  Middletown obviously has a discipline problem that needs to be addressed and not shoved under the rug.  It also leads one to wonder why the BOE hasn't gone to the city and taken a more forceful stance on Section 8 and the poverty issue.  Personally I believe this is the root problem in Middletown.  As the schools become less effective the students that can leave either through open enrollment or by attending Private school as my child does leave.  This causes the scores to go down even more as the brightest flee the school system for a better education.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 2:32pm
OK Pac, if Strickland says we can't whip 'em anymore, we can certainly inconvience them and their parents can't we? How about mandatory Saturday sessions for the problem kids and their parents. If the kid shows but not the parents, haul 'em into court, hit 'em in the pocketbook or take away some of their free time. They're responsible for seeing to it that their kid gets to school and behaves themselves while there, right? If the kid doesn't show, haul him into the juvenile system for mandatory community service after school and on weekends. Take their driver's license. Occupy their free time for "hanging out". Surely some program can be constructed to address the problems, right?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hermes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 2:48pm
Originally posted by gemneye70 gemneye70 wrote:

I agree with bill.
 
I don't understand Hermes wanting his own levy...
 
Everyone wants perfect schools, but no one wants to pay for it.
 
gemneye are you wealthy ? I want my own levy so I can pay for all the other levies this town keeps asking for because I for one can not afford to keep paying out the nose for all the excrement that keeps spewing out of city officials,school board members & now the library.
 
If your wealthy and living the good life maybe a few bucks doesn't bother some people, but if your on a fixed income & trying to survive it means the difference between eating, medicine, or paying for some idiotic levy.
No more democrats no more republicans,vote Constitution Party !!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pacman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 3:22pm
Vet how about we turn Roosevelt into the Gray-Bar Educational Ctr. for dropouts and constant troublemakers.Thumbs%20Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 3:45pm
OR, turn Roosevelt into a boot camp educational environment for "Tough Love" candidates that can't seem to go along with the programs in school with classes taught by former military instructors including physical education classes tailored after military bootcamp. Those methods seem to change alot of hard liner's minds and attitudes.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Smartman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 5:15pm
Thats not a bad idea about the Roosevelt property, but it takes money. Meaning another levy. If you are not willing to pass the one coming up, then stop looking for answers and just vote no. Again like I have said in the past, you are just looking at the bad eggs in the schools. Trust me, there are a lot of great kids in MCSD. Its just that the bad ones that weigh the system down. Pacman, I hope you child is getting a quality education at a private school. My daughter is a junior at MHS and is receiving an outstanding education. She is number 1 in her class. And yes she has parents that care and so do all her friends.
 
We cannot have the district lose 26% of their budget and expect great results. Instead we should pass the levy with the expectation that the new Super is going to do things the right way and not the Price way. I do believe that he will take control of the situation. jmoSmile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 5:45pm
What a great documentary and positioning piece. Doesn't Barbara Boxer remind everyone so much of city council, city council, and the city leadership for two decdes?
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Smartman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 6:21pm
acclaro,, You have solidified my opinion. You sir or madam are still an idiot!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pacman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 8:09pm
Smartman my child is getting a very good education in Private School.  I pulled him out of Middletown schools once he finished 5th grade at Rosedale. I was not happy with the decision to put 6th graders in with the Middle Schools.
 
I am glad to hear your daughter is doing so well at the High School.
 
Since moving my child to a Private School 3 years ago I can not recall one teacher or parent of a Middle School student that I have met or talked to who did not agree with my decision.  Many teachers, both currently teaching and retired ones have told me that I made the right decision.  I have had a number of parents come into my business and ask me about the Private School and several have placed their children in the same school.
 
Now I am not saying that there are not many great kids in Middletown schools as there obviously are, but the problems of the Middletown School system are weighing on the school system as a whole.  The Middletown School system as a whole has a serious discipline problem.
 
Now just as an example and yes I know I am not comparing like districts here Mrs. Andrew's:
 
Middletown Verity Middle School Disobedience/Disruptive behavior incidents at Verity # Students 635
 
2007-08 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents 1441
2008-09 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents  999
 
Vail # of Students 802
 
2007-08 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents 631
2008-09 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents 737
 
As you can see Middletown has a SERIOUS PROBLEM AT ITS MIDDLE SCHOOLS WHEN IT COMES TO DISCIPLINE.
 
Now lets look at another District I just chose at Random
 
Lakota Plains Jr High # of students 776
 
2007-08 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents 26
2008-09 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents 53
 
Lakota Ridge Jr. high # of students 683
 
2007-08 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents 201
2008-09 Disobedience/Disruptive Behavior incidents 313
 
 
1441 incidents at Verity is just unbelievable to me.  I mean folks who the hell is running our schools, as it sure appears the adults aren't.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Smartman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 16 2010 at 8:19pm
I hear and appreciate all you comments Pacman. I can only hope that the discipline problems will be reduced with the new Super. Most of those problems were created with Dr Price. All Im sayin is give the new guy a chance, pass the renewal and lets see what he can do. I REALLY BELIEVE IN MY HEART OF HEARTS that we will see major changes. Smile Lets dont deal him a dud hand to start. Thumbs%20Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 17 2010 at 7:23pm
 So, Smartan, you call me a idiot because I disagree with your premise the schools are great, and an out of state superintendant will restore discipline (that is not the reason the school numbers are so poor), You need to learn to debate and mak a point, than act childish and argue. Your screen name does not reflect your depth of thought "Smartman".  Lets see: we've gone from the poor demographics, section 8, a misunderstanding racially between cultures as excuses, and now its discipline, which a new Superintendant is going to rectify? What's next---too much dust in the air from brick being destroyed downtown or the system needs to spend more than the $11,300 average per pupil, among the highest in the state of Ohio?  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Smartman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 17 2010 at 7:45pm
acclaro, First of all $11,300 per student is correct. Why do you think that is so high?  The answer section 8. You cannot keep the cost per student down when 75% of the student population is on free and reduced lunch. That cost is also high because we have one of the best departments handling special needs children. There are many that come from other districts. That is paid for by the state in the form of grants. But unfortunately it does not reduce the cost per student. I agree that that  figure may be high, but is the schools fault? Do the schools advertise come to MCSD for free lunch? Now I'm not saying the the schools are perfect spenders, but they are trying. Their biggest  problem is our city administration for letting the section 8 problem grow.
 
Discipline went away in the past few years. All I am saying is give the new guy a chance, and give him a full deck to play with. I really believe that we all will be surprised. Thumbs%20Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wasteful Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 17 2010 at 9:31pm

So acclaro other than your opinion can you provide some statistical data as to why the school system is failing. You state it is not because of being economically disadvantaged, it is not because of a lack of discipline, not demographics, please provide us some data as to why the system is failing according to you.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote acclaro Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 17 2010 at 10:15pm
Smartman and Wasteful. the rationale I listed was associated with the reasons cited from Dr. Price among others. Middletown has changed in its shrinkage of middle-class, there is no doubt about that over the years. Can we blame the city for not attracting new vibrant business and the association with higher incomes, the correlation with higher degrees of GPA, ACT, and performance? Of course. So, the city is at fault.
 
By Ms. Andrews own admission, Middletown is unfairly compared to surroundinhg communities, when her view is the proper comparison is Youngtown, mandsfield, and inner city Cleveland, perhaps over the Rhine. Do you realize how that comparison reads to others considering Middletown, who may have higher incomes, when a school board member makes such an admission and indicates it is unfair to compare the city schools to schools which surround it?
 
You argue lower demographics bring down the school scores and performance. I argue virtually every teacher will tell you Middletown has focused almost entirely upon raising the test scores than on general academic outcomes. So, with such effort, the school district is still not making progress. And for you Smartman, your suggestion is the city district should spend what---$30,000. a year per pupil, and then it would turn around? Please, that's good money going down the drain. And, you argue a total number of approximately 1700 Section 8 families, many have no children I add, are bringing the school system down? If you added the total population of youngsters attending the schools from section 8, II doubt it would amount to 15-20% coming from a section 8 family.
 
As for my solution, I've expressed it. The state should allow families to have voucher credits, and send their students where the parent may choose. If they can cut it at Fenwick, great, let them go there. By the way, how much does open enrollment contribute to this decline? Is it worth the added funding vs the negative impact?
 
You expect property owners to support the overhead and continued poor performance under the cloak its for the lids, they need it. In reality, which is perfectly understandable, the real reason Smartman someone like you spits nails as those whom expect and demand accountability, is you want the expenses amortized over the greater population. Springboro finally got it right, and its time Middletown made some changes which have an impact and produce results.
 
I'm not the ED for the city of Middletown, why don't you both call Mr. Robinette and inquire as to why Middletown isn't attracting business and a school board member puts the current economic affairs, and correctly so, in the same category as Mansfield or Youngstown. From my recollection, the administration at the high school level didn't even believe it was right to give homework. Ask a Fenwick kid or MVS student how much they have each night- about 5 hours worth, 4 nights a week, all through the school year.         
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Smartman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Mar 18 2010 at 5:31am
acclaro,,,my daughter has just as much homework and up until midnight getting it done. You may want to re-read my post. I never said anything sbout $30,000 per student. Im now done with you!Censored
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