March 1-16 2001 SOS archivesgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Mulm : One Thread
URGENT - URGENT - URGENT I received the following message from Tobe Carey this afternoon.
Subject: alert special meeting at W Hurley 7PM tonight
High Alert...special meeting tonight at 7PM WEst hurley school. Spread the word!
Called by Marino...Board pres is denying the representation of the board by the attorney in a "service of complaint" made on the board by a citizen of the community. What this means is D' Erricos have filed a complaint and Marty is denying representation by Donoghue before the Commissioner. Of course they're going after Marino....
Be there to watch and see...
-- Jim (email@example.com), March 01, 2001.
Online account of the Thursday special meeting at Daily Freeman online Eyewitness accounts and further explanations welcome. I find this latest twist bewildering, given how many times the D'Erricos have spoken about their daughter's alleged assault at board meetings. The child has certainly not had any privacy concerning it from her parents.
-- Carol (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 02, 2001.
Thanks, Carol, for the link.... After all the crap that's come down, ain't it wonderful to still be amazed at how vile and stupid they can be!!!!
-- curry (email@example.com), March 02, 2001.
Again, the majority of Onteora Board of Education finds itself steeped in controversy. Here's some clarifications, which along with the above link to the Freeman article, may help in presenting a better picture of this issue. A family in the community, the D'Errico's, have repeatedly come before the board and publicly stated that their daughter was sexually assaulted on a school bus. Apparently the D'Errico's were not satisfied with the response they received from the administration. But they have persisted with this ineffective method for resolution for over a year and a half.
Several meetings ago this matter was discussed in executive session and publicly referred to by trustee Marino D'Orazio. Mr. D'Orazio never mentioned the child's name in public according to a videotape of the meeting. Now Mr. D'Orazio finds himself the target of a petition filed before the State Comissioner of Education claiming that Mr. D'Orazio violated the Student Privacy Act.
Mr. D'Orazio contacted the school board attorney to get legal counsel. But the counsel later told Mr. D'Orazio that board president Martin Milman had told the him to "cease and desist" in representing Mr. D'Orazio. When questioned by the district lawyer for Mr. Milman's reasoning, the lawyer was told by Mr. Milman to speak to Mr. Doan for details.
Mr. D'Orazio then called a special meeting of the board of education to discuss the issue and get a vote on the decision by Mr. Milman. The issue of the petition needed a legal response within 72 hours, so a timely meeting was necessary. The only members of the board to show up at this meeting was Mr. D'Orazio and Ms. Carey.
This is a highly political situation. The D'Errico family are big supporters of CARE and campaigned vigorously for the majority's election last year. Now this same majority is in the position of settling with the D'Errico's out of court. And they have been the one's not to show up at the special meeting and to deny D'Orazio the legal representation he is entitled to have as a board member.
-- Jim (firstname.lastname@example.org snow), March 02, 2001.
anyone think it would be helpful if a couple of us went to the next care mtg? I think it is March 9
-- susan buckler (email@example.com), March 02, 2001.
Keep checking the Freeman link throughout the day, the webmaster is allowing some fairly pointed letters to be printed on the website in response this time. The webmaster does not always allow letters on controversial subjects to appear, as I have found from experience, or they may drag their heels. Make sure any letters you submit on sensitive issues are factually accurate and objective. The webmaster seems to prefer at least first names rather than anonymous, but viewing the source code currently in use (it could change, using MSIE click "view" and "source" to see the html coding) any postings that do not submit an email address will not have the source revealed unless it is typed in. I've almost never had responses from other readers emailed to me after putting in my email when writing about the mascot issue, so I don't think there is that much danger of getting poison pen emails in return. They seem to prefer not having website links submitted in these online responses, either. As far as I know, letters submitted online to the Freeman are not automatically considered for the hard-copy version, you would need to submit a letter separately to the editor.
Search function on the Freeman site is not currently working.
-- Carol (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 02, 2001.
"an appeal to the commissioner must be initiated within 30 days of the decision or action complained of" according to the Freeman this morning, the date of that meeting was Jan 18
does anyone have a date of the petition to the commissioner? I'll call Marino this morning to alert him
was terrific to see us all there last night.
-- susan buckler (email@example.com), March 02, 2001.
The appeal to the commissioner was made late according to the transcripts. Althought I don't have the full petition I do have the affadavit filed by D'Errico. It states that the incident occerred on Jan. 18. Later in the document, in explaining his tardiness, D'Errico claims that he first wrote to the commisssioners office on Jan. 20, received the reply from the NYSED on February 12 with info on how to find the website with the forms needed to file an appeal. D'Ericco couldn't find the forms online so he got someone from the office to mail them to him. He then called the NYSED and spoke to a a Ms. Ryan on Feb. 22 and 26th to assist hiom in filling out the forms. So the forms may have indeed been filed late.
-- Jim (ME@home.looking), March 02, 2001.
I spoke to Marino this morning. He knows that the petition was submitted beyond 30 days but said that in cases like this involving board members and parents, the commissioner will often excuse the 30 day requirement. He is very grateful for our interest and support
-- susan buckler (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 02, 2001.
Hey Susan: I am interested in going to a CARE meeting with you. Kathy Hochman has been encouraging me to check out a meeting. Also, we might get some perspective or sense of what the h--l is going on!! The extremist in CARE are going crazy! We'll talk on phone Susan and discuss it please. My kids have strep...guess what, me too. I won't be at meeting tomorrow. Please keep me posted. I'm writing letter to editor about "average kid" and mediocrity. I'll post it when done for input. I hope to read it at March 5 public be heard.
-- melissa rebock (email@example.com), March 02, 2001.
Thoughts from yesterday’s meeting: •An anonymous benefactor has offered to pay for all our signs. This is awesome: thanks so much! Ted is off and running on sign production: something really punchy...
•The list of questions for the candidates was culled down to 8 dynamite questions. Interviews are scheduled for the next meeting: 9am ( yes, 9!) Sat, 3/24. Jim will invite Meg, Tom, Kathy, and Michael G. This is a VERY important meeting....
•Morty connected with the county-wide voter registration list, on disk. The lists we are compiling become all the more important as a cross reference: let’s get those lists together by next meeting.
•Big BOE action this week: Monday & Wednesday! Check the calender for more info
•I was talking with Meg later Saturday, and it dawned on me that putting her through the same selection process as the others is kind of weird. We all know her, what she stands for, and how she handles herself. Therefore, I want to make a bbs motion to offer our endorsement to her immediately and without further ado. Is this out of order? Please, everyone, let me know how you feel about this.....
•I’m gonna take a crack at the mission statement, try to get the excellent values expressed to read easier. Stay tuned...........
-- curry (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 11, 2001.
Curry’s edit of the Mission Statement: SOS, Support Onteora Schools, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting positive educational values in the Onteora School District. We think we should have a school system that gives all our children the best possible education and the taxpayer the best possible value. To achieve these goals, SOS will address the issues important to the Onteora district, endorse a good budget, and back school board candidates whose educational philosophy is similar to ours.
-- curry (email@example.com), March 11, 2001.
I feel that we need to hear Meg interviewed as well as everyone else It will help make our decision on candidate selection more clear and absolute. While Meg is certainly the favorite, there are a few members of SOS who may not be all that familiar with Meg or her policy ideas. It will help us get behind her by hearing her clearly articulate her positions. I don't think this should be difficult for her. And it can only help us represent her better during the campaign.
-- Jim (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 11, 2001.
Curry - Please repost the mission statement onto the "Mission Statement" thread on the home page. Any documents such as this should be posted on the threads designated for them. Thanks.
-- Jim (email@example.com), March 11, 2001.
Try to make sense of this and speak out tonight!!! Here's the budget numbers from 1999-2000 compared to 2000-2001 and 2001-02.
1999-2000 Total district transportation costs - $2,392,732
2000-2001 Total district transportation costs - $2,488,182 (Amended budget to include the 8/00 BOE approved additional contract transportation)
2001-02 (proposed) Total district transportation costs - $2,625,931
This amounts to an additional cost of $95,450 form 1999-00 to 2000-01.
But the late runs for 2000-01 have been over budget. The 2000-01 budget allowed for $17,085 in late run costs. The estimated costs for late runs as reflected in the proposed 2001-02 budget is $110,000.
This reflects a cost overrun in 2000-01 for late runs of $92,915
In 2000-01 the budget addition for contract transportation and the late run addition is totalled at $188,365. $92,915, the late run costs, must come from somewhere else in the budget or contingnecy fund. From where?
The proposed 2001-02 budget is $2,625,931. Compared to the 1999-00 budget this represents an increase of $233,199 in 2 years when the district went from from less privatization to the present increased privatization.
The proposed 2001-02 budget is $2,625,931. Compared to the 2000-01 2 1/2% contingency budget, before the additional costs of BOE approved contract transportation of $2,464,901, the increase is $161,030.
-- Jim (Jim@home.writin), March 12, 2001.
Last nights BOE meeting was just plain disgusting.
-- Jim (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 13, 2001.
In the first place, God made idiots. That was for practice. Then he made school boards. - Mark Twain I only lasted until 9:30 at the BOE meeting and it made me even more sick than I already was! Did anyone catch any of the "Perryisms" from the meeting? I send them to my son at college.
-- Betsy Wise (email@example.com), March 14, 2001.
Not all of us could get to the meeting, please share the words of wisdom dripping from Perry's mouth and other notable memories! CARE have slightly revised their list of things for which we should be grateful to the board.
-- Carol (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 14, 2001.
The next SOS meeting is the candidates interviews on Saturday, March 24 at 9am. It will be held at Judy's Kitchen in Shokan. Please attend this important meeting to fully understand the decision we will have to make afterward for SOS candidate support. We must make a final decision after the interviews. Election day is approaching rapidly.
9:15am - Michael Goodman
10:15am - Kathy Hochman
11:15am - Meg Carey
12:15pm - Tom Rosato
The candidates interviews should last about 30-45 minutes each. The candidates will open with a five minute introduction. The interview format will then involve eight questions to be asked of each candidate. Jim Sofranko will moderate the question and answers. A five minute summation will follow for the candidates closing remarks.
No videotaping will be permitted but a audio tape recorder will be permitted for SOS non-public reference. If someone has the resources to record audio, please do so.
-- Jim (Jim@home.working), March 14, 2001.
Monday nights board meeting was absolutely the pits! Barbara Boyce was magnificient though! Her budget presentation was a power point, held your interest, she gave a full explanation of special ed and how it all interelates with general ed, there was levity and it was informatiive. Of course the numbers were eye crossing in their chart form, but she explained everything very well. I loved it when she made points about the average kid through her presentation and directed our attention to Rose Ostrander by name. she also put at least $20 - $30,000 more in preparation for Shaw coming into district and forcing parents to go to hearing. Doan did not like that. She explained a hearing starts at $15,000 and on up. Yours truley is prepared to do so if I catch wind of my sons program being messed with in any way. Mike Greihl gave his numbers and presentation. I was hoping he would have been stronger in his showing that privatization was more costly than in house buses. Meg made suggestion to have situation again analized by consultant (the same one said leave everything alone, that 30%in district and 70%private buses was healthy ratio and worked well) Of course majority board did not listen and created present situation. Mike agreed it was the right timing to have consultant come in again.
I left around 10:30pm and was extremely tired and emotionally pooped. I found out next day that Doan grabbed Vanacore who was exiting to go to bed before meeting was adjourned, whispered in his ear, Vanacore sat back down, Doan made motion to hire Shaw for mandate issues, majority passed it and I am extremely upset! This was, I'm told, within the OK rules of board members but it was unethical. He waited til most of audience went home and at 11:30pm made his motion, which was not on the agenda. Sorry folks, but I have to call him a bastard. Anyway, I'm trying to gather information and supporters from Kingston and New Paltz districts. People who experienced Shaw and know the impact his handy work has done. I'm going to use my contacts to network and prepare for a retaliation. I have gotten a few more parents aware, willing to write letters and attend meetings. I HOPE ALL YOU GUYS ARE DOING THE SAME. We need people out in the community to speak up. Please talk to everyone you know.
This isn't just about Special Ed guys. We're just a natural easy target. General Ed is going to suffer big! Fred Perry thinks we'll still have field trips. I don't think so.
-- melissa (email@example.com), March 14, 2001.
Online account of the meeting in the Freeman. Barbara Clare has been making sure she responds to a lot of these online recently, I suggest you get in early to respond.
-- Carol (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 15, 2001.
The purpose of this first investigation by Sleazeball Shaw, of course, is to get rid of Hal Rowe. Expect charges to be brought against him, and to become a big election issue!! These charges won't fly, but they intend to get lots of votes from them, so we need to be ready to expose what they're doing for what it is: a political witch hunt. And Hal, as a target, is just the beginning.... Does anyone have an idea for a friendly contact in the Woodstock PTA? I know we have Bennett covered, but who can make our urgently needed contacts with the pta's at Phoenicia and West Hurley? Anybody??
-- curry (email@example.com), March 15, 2001. I have been having conversations with Phoenicia PTA president, Gina Cortinna. She is very unhappy with board and implications. I'm planning on attending the next meeting. Yes, we need credible folks to get up and yell. And I agree that Hal is the target. He knows it to well. I'm also challenging the staff at Phoenicia...I'm asking why they aren't getting involved? The teachers need to show their outrage. This afternoon I got some rumblings of teachers getting in touch with other school districts to find out Shaw involvments. I'll check that out tomorrow. Best regards, Melissa
-- melissa (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 15, 2001.
Hi, I just got back from visting Alan Carey and Susan Buckler at the Dartmouth Medical Center. Alan is basically doing really good, and will probably move to a rehab center by the end of next week, for a 2-3 week stay. Susan is staying up there until, and she's doing good, also, though I think in many ways it's harder for her than for Alan. I delivered the card, and it made them both happy.....Love to all, C ps My first facilities com. meeting Monday am!! I'll report in after...
-- curry (email@example.com), March 16, 2001.
-- Anonymous, January 17, 2002
Missed a chunk there:
Here's a Public-Be-Heard(PBH) essay I am considering saying at the next BOE meeting whenever that is after the big snow storm. You can bet that the BOE meeting tomorrow night will be vcancelled due to the anticipated snow. Watch the board for re-scheduling. Please suggest comments to the following statement. Thanks. Dear Members of the Board,
I have been coming to the school board meetings observing and participating in the ongoing debates and discussions of issues for over 2 years now. As a filmmaker, I often carefully observe human behavior as it is something I have been trained to do and use in my work.
I have come to realize that many of the differences we may have in the Onteora community are not as far apart as we may sometimes believe. Yes, we may have different approaches and different philosophies as to what best meets the educational needs of our children. But what I find ever-so-striking is not the differences we may have but the many common goals that we all share and hold so dearly as a community.
Oddly enough, it seems as if we agree on nearly as many goals as we disagree. We all seem to care deeply for the needs of the children in our community. We all seem to agree we want to provide the safest environment in our schools for our children. We all seem to agree that we wish to discourage drug use by our children. And we all seem to agree that we want to be able to provide a positive educational experience for our children with a fiscal responsibility to the taxpayers. We want our children to suceed in a competitive world. I believe there are many more areas of agreement that we haven't even begun to recognize or appreciate.
And what, really, are our differences? One group may feel it is best to be more authoritative and demanding with our students. Another may feel the best approach is to provide a more nurturing environment. Why is it that we can't find more common ground in the best interest of our children? Why is it that we are constantly pulling ourselves down by seeking division rather than consensus? What is it that makes us hate each other so passionately that lives are being threatened, cars vandalized, and people harassed simply because of their beliefs? I don't believe this to be the true spirit of our democracy. My relatives fled Eastern Europe to avoid just such a hostile political environment.
I would like to see this board try to reach out to bridge the gap more eloquently than they have in the past. Share the visions and common goals we have to make our children's education more enriching. Get together as the civic group your were elected to be and thoroughly discuss and impartially evaluate proposals before you in the best interests of the whole community. I plead with the board to end the ugly, political, partisanship which has divided and dominated this board for the last year. It has done nothing but brings us all down and create a horrible environment in which to try and educate our children. Please do it for the children and the community. It is your duty.
-- Jim (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 04, 2001.
Petition stats from last years election [Yerry] are now posted on documents thread. Take a look Morty.These refer to individuals who signed the petition to return the Onteora Indian.
-- mmillar (email@example.com), March 04, 2001.
I'm working those figures from the petitions that Maureen posted in "transcripts and documents" up into tables that I can put up on the web for us. For starters, the most important breakdown you may want to know from all that alphabet soup is this: the top 5 hamlets signing were (from largest figure down) Shokan, Olivebridge, Phoenicia, Boiceville, West Shokan. I've got a separate sheet that Dennis(?) gave us at the time showing that second paragraph that totals 582, but it has no title saying what it was. Was this perhaps the "Dump Hal" petition? I don't want to put that up without a context.
Someone have the original wordings to go with the petitions, so I can add that?
I also have a question on the voter affiliation breakdowns. Can I assume these were cross-checked against voter registration lists?
Does "non-enrolled" mean not registered to vote, or just not registered in a party?
And most of all, the party affiliation section is junk statistics currently and needs tweaking. The party affiliation totals add up to 758 by my calculations instead of 717, and the percentages add up to 105.73%, so both figures need one of you to go through and adjust the various categories.
What is the procedure for obtaining copies of the petitions? Where does one get them, how much will it cost, how long does it take to obtain them? I may need my own set to go through for police officer signatures, since I am running into some trouble with the Olive police coming out of my mascot-related tire vandalism.
-- Carol (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 05, 2001.
Sometimes dealing with this present board seems like a "tug of war". They launch an attack on special ed and we counter with special ed advocates and statistics supporting the program. How about we yank them in a direction that they are not expecting. Rose wants to talk about the "average" kid? Let's talk about them! Let's talk about the need to supply excellent education to ALL of our students. Let's find out just what this board has done to support this excellent education this year. (It is a very short list--somehow, I just don't think allowing sports qualifies us for excellent education....). What has this group done since last July to support passing regents exams? Do they even know the educational issues that need attention at the school. Example: Do they know how many seniors go home half way through the day and do nothing because we offer them nothing? If we make them stay in school, they sit in study halls. What has this board done to support teachers to enhance their own programs, create new ones? We know they haven't done anything but it might be useful to point these things out in public. It also might help take the spotlight off special ed. I don't think they will give up their quest to squeeze special ed, but bringing another issue to the front that involves alot more of the school population might have it's advantages. I really think we need to stress the need to move away from the behavorial (dogs & cameras) to the educational. And I'm not talking about Fred Perry going to teachers and asking them what they want... (It is 4AM so I'm going to assume that my point is not exactly clear but lets toss this around and see if you think it has any merit.) Where is the spell check on this thing?
-- Betsy Wise (email@example.com), March 06, 2001.
Jim, I think your letter is a good appeal for unity and reason. Please include alcohol, not just drug prevention. I think we're moving in the right direction, in that unity is based on finding common ground. Now we need to find out where that ground lies. The more specific we can be about proposing goals and means towards achieve our vision of exellence in education, the more we can hope to unite people. I like Betsey's ideas about addressing the importance of a good education for all students. Our goals should include the real needs of our largely working class community. For example, keeping the schools open early as well as late in the day, and possibly in the summer. Having useful and interesting activities for kids after school, including the High School, as Betsey suggests. I think we could use an alternative program within the high school that offers creative courses as well as social events/activities for kids who are alienated - not all our kids are into sports! I'm still supporting the "No Bullying" program for the elementary schools. Another child shot and killed students in a High School recently and I wonder why. Some students said he did suffer a fair amount of teasing and I think this might be significant. Gotta run. Irene
-- Irene (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2001.
Next SOS meeeting will be held on this Saturday, March 10, 2001. We will be discussing questions to finalize for the candidates. Please read the questions on the thread to familiarize yourself with the direction they are taking. Thanks. Next BOE meeting will be held on Monday, March 12, 2001. It will be at the West Hurley School and will be a regular meeting starting at 7pm.
-- Jim (Me@home.working), March 07, 2001.
I am planning to ask Janet Nelson to join the SOS bbs as she had attended the meeting last week.
-- Jim (email@example.com), March 07, 2001.
I have been attending school board meetings, observing, and participating in the ongoing discussions of issues for over 2 years now. As a filmmaker I carefully observe human behavior. It is something I have been trained to do. I have come to realize that though differences abound in the Onteora community, we are not as far apart as we may sometimes believe. Yes, we have different approaches and different philosophies as to how best meet the educational needs of our children, but there are goals we hold in common. Oddly enough, it seems to me, that we agree on nearly as many goals as we disagree. We care deeply for the needs of the children in our community. We agree on providing a safe environment for our children. We agree that it's important to discourage alcohol and drug use by our children. Providing our children with a positive educational experience in a fiscally responsible manner is another goal were hold in common. I believe there are many more areas of agreement that we haven't even begun to recognize or appreciate.
Why is it that we are constantly at odds and mired in division, rather than buoyed by the multiple possibilities of our abilities to contribute effective ideas in a climate of consensus?
I would like to see this board, and all the stakeholders in this currently adversarial community, reach out to bridge the gap. Let's build the bridge and invite our children to walk upon it. The strength of our bridge will depend on how much we value the trust they put in us to guide them across it. Let the keystone be the risk we are willing to take for them. A bridge built of our shared visions and common goals will serve our children well for many years and can be a model for new and better ones to come. By building the bridge we can make our children's education more enriching and show them that, by turning our backs on our own isolation and fears, we truly have the nurturing of their minds in our hearts.
Members of the board, take a risk. Guide this community. Get together as the civic group your were elected to be, and thoroughly and respectfully discuss and evaluate proposals before you. Keep our children, who can yet be the best in our community, in the forefront of your thoughts. I plead with the board to end the political partisanship, which has dominated this board for the last year. Please do it for our children.
The above is Sharon's edit of Jim's text. Any feedback?
-- Sharon (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2001.
They won't understand it, they won't do it. [sigh] Judge orders Millman to let D'Orazio have counsel in D'Errico matter.
-- Carol (email@example.com), March 08, 2001.
Hi all: I'm in agreement that the educational issues need to be emphasised. The reason special ed is targeted is because special ed is always targeted. It's any easy way out so the real issues aren't addressed. So therefore, advocates have to respond each time. It gets tiresome. The botttom line is, if the modulars go and there's no replacement the impact will be on all the kids. Larger classroom sizes of students, split classrooms to accomodate 2 classes, kids shipped around to different buildings, school lines changed so older kids go to one building and younger ones to yet another etc. Many have gone up to public-be-heard and said straight out "what is happening in June?" How will this situation effect "the average kid" not to mention students in other programs. This is a common ground issue that is urgent and must be a concern for many. Of course (this is a little joke) I'm wondering if I'll be assigned as an aide at Phoenicia to a closet with 20 kids! Help! See you Saturday.
-- melissa (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 08, 2001.
Melissa - We missed you last week and look forward to your input at the next meeting. Your letter made the rounds in all the important papers. Great Job!
-- Jim (email@example.com), March 08, 2001.
Test Please ignore.
-- Jim (firstname.lastname@example.org'), March 08, 2001.
Here's the transporatation scoop from Mike Grehl, the head of the Onteora transportation dept. The total transportation budget for 2001-02 will be at a 5.54% increase from the last year's 2000-01 budget. Please note that last year's budget had been amended to include the extra privatization contracts that the district had bid out in August. So the 2000-01 numbers include last years privatization costs. I am in the process of getting the numbers from the 1999-2000 to compare the actual increase in costs due to privatization. Nonetheless here's some figures to digest.
Contract Services-Late Runs
2000-01 - $17,085
2000-02 - $110,000
An projected increase in late run costs under contract services (privatization) of 543.84%
Total Contract Services Transportation Costs
2000-01 - $1,790,331
2001-02 - $2,072,809
An projected increase of 15.78% for Contract Service transportation which includes routes, late runs, summer runs, 2 new routes and fuel.
The in-house bus service total district transportation will have a 21.19% decrease in expenses.
Mr. Grehl will explain the meaning of these numbers at his presentation which, I believe, will be at Mondays BOE meeting..
-- Jim (Me@home.lookingatnumbers), March 08, 2001.
I have been attending school board meetings for over 2 years now. As a filmmaker I carefully observe human behavior. It is something I have been trained to do. I have come to realize that though differences abound in the Onteora community, we are not as far apart as we may sometimes believe. Yes, we have different approaches and different philosophies as to how best meet the educational needs of our children, but there are goals we hold in common. Oddly enough, it seems to me, that we agree on nearly as many goals as we disagree. We care deeply for the needs of the children in our community. We agree on providing a safe environment for our children. We agree that it's important to discourage alcohol and drug use by our children. Providing our children with a positive educational experience in a fiscally responsible manner is another goal were hold in common. I believe there are many more areas of agreement that we haven't even begun to recognize or appreciate.
Why is it that we are constantly at odds and mired in division, rather than buoyed by the multiple possibilities that could be generated in a climate of consensus?
I would like to see this board, and all the stakeholders in this currently adversarial community, reach out to bridge the gap. The strength of our bridge will depend on how much we value the trust they put in us to guide them across it. Let the keystone be the risk we are willing to take for them. A bridge built of our shared visions and common goals will serve our children well for many years and can be a model for new and better ones to come. By building the bridge we can make our children's education more enriching and show them that, by overcoming our isolation and fears, we truly have the nurturing of their minds in our hearts. Let's build the bridge and invite our children to walk upon it.
Members of the board, take a risk. Guide this community. Get together as the civic group you were elected to be, and thoroughly and respectfully discuss and evaluate proposals before you. Keep our children, who can yet be the best in our community, in the forefront of your thoughts. I plead with the board to end the political partisanship, which has dominated this board for the last year. Please do it for our children.
Just a bit of further editing. It could still be a little tighter, but I thibk it's pretty good. Even if it falls on deaf ears, we are implanting the seeds of a new approach in people's minds, and allying ourselves with the voices of reason and reconciliation. Irene
-- Irene (email@example.com), March 09, 2001.
morning.unfortunately,we have a job crunch and i need to go to work today. work has been the dominant reality which, i am afraid, keeps me from the other things i want to do. apologies for not being present here or there. no doubt you will have some constuctive conversation with out my wild commentary. wonderful to see everyone is thinking and talking.good luck today. sorry not to be there for my secretary chores jim, honestly saturdays present some problems with work for me which will be insurmountable as soon as spring really arrives. i can stay tuned in here.much love .
-- mmillar (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 10, 2001.
-- Anonymous, January 17, 2002