The state Education Department wants Buffalo School District leaders to prove that they offered meaningful opportunities for parents to weigh in on the district’s comprehensive improvement plan and the consolidated application that enables the district to qualify for more than $20 million in federal grant funding.
Samuel L. Radford III, president of the District Parent Coordinating Council, said Sunday that he’s confident there’s no way the district will be able to provide such evidence, which will result in the district being sent back to the drawing board to redraft both documents.
“In this particular case, I believe they’re going to do what they should have done in the first place,” Radford said. “They should have just included us in the first place, and we wouldn’t have had to go through any of this.”
The latest letter from the state is part of a continuing pattern in which the parent council, or DPCC, warns the district and the Board of Education that they are about to take action that violates state rules, but administrators and board members move ahead without the parent council’s agreement.
So far, these actions have resulted in the state investigating the parent council’s complaints, siding with the parents and requiring the district to start over. That was most recently the case with the district’s student transfer plan, which was ordered to undergo further revision because of the lack of parent involvement.
In a letter Friday, Roberto Reyes, a director in the state Education Department’s Office of Accountability, said the state says it can “find no evidence that the DPCC was consulted” in the creation of the district’s comprehensive improvement plan or individual school improvement plans.
He added that he is also concerned about allegations by Radford that the district did not collaborate meaningfully with the parent council in the submission of the federal grant application that is subject to approval by the state.
Do we want Buffalo district to abide by the rues and consult with the parent's council before making high impact decisions?
But we also want the New York State Education Department, and in particular its imperious commissioner, to consult with parents before it makes high impact decisions too.
Of course the education reformers at the NYSED do not do this because they think they are above that sort of thing.
They think you, the parent, work for them rather than they, the bureaucrats, work for you.
We teach our children this sham in school that they live in a representative democracy where, when they grow up, they will have some say in how their country, state, and municipality or local community is run.
Te truth is, we live in a fake democracy run by plutocrats where their political functionaries impose whatever the hell they want to impose on us and we are rendered powerless to stop them.
Unless we take to the streets, take to the airwaves, take the Internet, and take to corridors of power and make them stop.
We must take back our representative democracy from authoritarians like John King and Andrew Cuomo who seek to impose their own will on the state without any recourse from the public.