Monday, February 25, 2013

Carping about Carpe Diem

There will be a public hearing this month on a proposed new charter school to be located on the Ambassador campus just a stone's throw from my house. Carpe Diem is a for profit operator, so Karen O'Frisco is already moaning about a Republican conspiracy. She's also complaining that the input from the "public" (FWCS school officials) will be disregarded, which would make it just like talking at an FWCS public hearing.

But that probably won't stop Mark GiaQuinta from personally voicing his disparaging opinion about school choice for those who can't afford to send their kids to Canterbury. It's like telling them they can have any car they want as long as it's made by Government Motors.

Karen suggests just e-mailng your comments. Good idea.

33 comments:

Anonymous said...

Evert,

We need another charter school in Fort Wayne since the other charter schools have done such a great job.

Code Blue Schools said...

We just need to find some that can do better than FWCS, which shouldn't be that hard. Adjusting to their demographics without outside pressure is impossible for FWCS. Competition in itself won't motivate change either. Change is not in their DNA, only self preservation, All that matters is their money..

If parents buy GiaQuinta's crap that's fine, but don't try to take away their options for the benefit of Wendy's hangers on and FWEA. I'm just glad I don't have kids. I'd either have to move or fork over tuition for private school.

ForParentChoice said...

...and FWCS does believe it is their "money"...

Having sat in the public hearing tonight, I was amazed to hear FWCS faculty yell "it's our money" at the stage when the Carpe DIem founder spoke about how state dollars follow the student.

The money is designated by the state to educate the child through a free public school. Charter schools and FWCS both meet this qualification. Therefore, let the parents decide!

Anonymous said...

ForParentChoice, I heard no FWCS faculty yelling anything of the sort and all FWCS employees were very respectful. Interesting that Carpe Diem admitted they have no knowledge of the need or market for their type of school in Fort Wayne.
The school in Indy started the year with 87 students. Maybe they will take students from the sinking Thurgood Marshall?

ForParentChoice said...

Maybe we were sitting in different parts of the room then, but I do know what I heard. And yes, despite the heated exchange I felt the comments were respectful too.

I do agree, any school going anywhere should do their due diligence in surveying the community. It is bad practice to "give it a shot" without knowing if there is need within the community.

However, if there is interest and you provide an alternative experience that is what a parent chooses...then by all means, do what needs to be done to support the student. Let the money follow the student.

How does the 12% being paide to Carpe Diem as an EMO compare to the percentage FWCS pays to their downtown headquarters? I think that would be a great comparison study...not saying i know the results, but it would be great to see!

Anonymous said...

I am a fan of Carpe Diem. They seem to be a bit more about the money, than other charter schools. But, unlike GiaQuinta, I know that Fort Wayne NEEDS choices in education. However, within Fort Wayne we have settled for mediocrity. If we would look downstate, the 1st 3 charter schools in Indianapolis were founded by nonprofit organizations compiled of community residents who wanted the best for their children. The problem is that no one is coming up for a solution from the inside, except for band-aid solutions.

Anonymous said...

I am NOT a fan....Talking on the phone, while typing does not bode well for blogging.

Code Blue Schools said...

You won't see any change coming from the inside. all the talk about reforming our government schools is just that, talk. They will never inflict the necessary pain on themselves.

So we need to develop alternatives, which will be a long slog. After all FWCS didn't deteriorate overnight. But private schools patrons like GiaQuinta and Corona arguing for the status quo and against choice, should speed up the process.

Code Blue Schools said...

BTW during the remonstrance FWCS claimed that 80% of their money went directly to the classroom. If true that's one of the better numbers for govt. schools. That might have been the case because they were diverting their capital (building) money to the racial balance funding 2/3 of which paid for extra teachers. We've never seen an accounting of what that did for minority test scores, but we are now going to have to pay for delayed building improvements (AC).

ForParentChoice said...

And that's what I am wondering. When you dig through all the financials, how much money is actually being spent on educating a child. You cannot look at a charter EMO and say paying them 12% is out of line when compared to district schools, because district schools must also pay money to operate the schools. All the money that goes downtown in Fort Wayne is being spent on the same things that an EMO provides (HR, Legal Fees, business managers, etc.). What % does FWCS pay into those expenses? How does that compare to paying an EMO?

Code Blue Schools said...

The overall cost per student in FWCS is now about $12000 per year. A charter will be cheaper but it's the learning that matters most. We have a big problem in the high schools south of Coliseum and there's an opportunity here to try something different.

The State Charter Board approved the application for Carpe Diem in Fort Wayne this afternoon.

Anonymous said...

New Tech is only in its 4th year and seems to be extremely popular...oh, and it is south of Coliseum.

Anonymous said...

Funny things about New Tech: there students can't pass the GRE. One of the cashier's at Kroger's - Waynedale told me that only half to two-thirds of his senior class has passed the GQE test, which is better than Fort Wayne Schools' but less than Homestead, Carroll or Canterbury.

Code Blue Schools said...

I haven't seen the test results for New Tech student separately from Wayne. I wouldn't expect them to be much different from the rest of FWCS.

Is "popularity" a new state accountability measure?

Anonymous said...

A little ironic that Mr. Corona is upset that only two members of the charter school committee showed up Tuesday for the meeting about Carpe Diem. When there was a question and answer meeting about closing Elmhurst three years ago Mr. Corona did not even bother to show up. What made this so interesting is that he was Elmhurst's school board member. I also love how FWCS does not allow the public to speak on television anymore. Some democracy. FWCS is in poor shape and deserves to close.

Anonymous said...

Funny thing...there is no GRE or GQE test.

Anonymous said...

Also, I believe that this is the first year for a senior class at New Tech, so there are no senior class test results yet (for the Algebra and English ECAs which are the two tests a student must take to graduate).

Anonymous said...

"Popularity" was mentioned because you said we need to develop alternatives, and New Tech is an educational alternative that is attracting students.

Anonymous said...

New Tech is more for allowing the kids to have an associates degree at graduation for free. All of the kids that I know that go there say that. Closing FWCS is one of the most crazy things said on here yet. Ft Wayne would not survive. They are the largest employer.I have been in Catholic Schools, Imagine and now FWCS and I would NEVER go back to a charter school. EVER. It's great for "some" of the kids. The teachers are treated like crap, they LIVE at that school just to keep the kids and parents happy. We met some really great kids at Imagine and I wil always be greatful for that. But where is the owner to help these schools? They don't care....so why should we? I was really disgusted that Carpe Diem brought students to the meeting here in Ft Wayne, They knew that the reaction would be bad. They all looked so scared. I felt horrible for them. They only have 87 students in Indy with them that is hardly anything to stand up and sing about. Why not find a charter that works before you invite more in? And who will be the donor for the $100,000.00 that they need to open? They do not have teachers they have coaches so they can pay them coaches salary. Indiana is nothing but a joke anymore and I know that other states are going to follow. I myself am thinking of leaving the country...it's just not worth it anymore.

Code Blue Schools said...

"Popularity" says nothing about the quality of the education they are getting. Their ECA's, which they should take as freshmen and sophomores and PSAT's and SAT's do. I could have been the most "popular" sub in the history of FWCS by letting them play cards, surf the web, text, socialize - anything except making them do algebra. South of Coliseum they didn't give a damn and after a couple of years of that neither did I.

I'm not advocating shutting down FWCS and I'm not an apologist for Imagine Schools. But having been in our high schools, if I had kids, I wouldn't put them is any of them. But for anyone who thinks they're "great" schools, that's fine.

The Carpe Diem school in Indy has been open for less than a year. I'm not surprised the kids were intimidated by GiaQuinta's diatribes and orchestrated "opposition". Wendy pulled that crap to show "support" at the "public hearing" on the first bond issue. He's pulled it at every charted school hearing so far. It says nothing about community support. If nobody enrolls that will be the end of it and that's OK too. But believing that FWCS administrators, teachers and board members are representative of community sentiment is hogwash.

Anonymous said...

Code Blue, to say that "south of Coliseum they don't give a damn" is an insult to the hard working students and teachers in all of those schools. If you could only stick with the facts you might have some credibility.

Where were the parents and/or students at the Carpe Diem hearing who are interested in attending? Certainly not at the hearing!

Anonymous said...

New Tech graduates do not go to obtain an associates degree during high school. They are prescribed courses of FWCS curriculum. EACS University, may be the program your thinking about, and they are in the first year of their combined high school, associates degree program. Granted most students in their programs, as I have been told by a teacher, are unprepared for the program.

Code Blue Schools said...

"Hard working"? That's another undefined term that means nothing. Like the "hard working middle class". Whatever it means, in the real world it has to be related to success or your "hard work" will get you nothing but the unemployment line.

If schools are going to improve outcomes it will take ideas fron the outside. "New Tech" was not invented by Faye Williams, it was imported. Innovation will not come from withing FWCS or the larger education establishment. They don't do R&D.

In the corporate sector, 90% of the new ideas fail but the 10% that work keep the companies in business in the future.

GiaQuinta and company's vision of the future is to keep the tax dollars coming their way. Don't rock the hard working boat when it's sinking.

Anonymous said...

Good Lord if it weren't for Mark GiaQuinta what would you have to complain about? It's easy for "older" retired teachers to sit and place judgement on others as they are living on MY social security and a public retirement fund that if the state has their way will be gone also. I bet you didn't pay $600/mo for your insurance with all bills only being paid 20%. And now the 401K is gone too. So I do think it is easy for old folks to pass judgement while you are living on what we will never have. I can't stand your cut down of the public schools. You have nothing good to say about anything in FWCS? I see my husband walk out this door at 6am and he gets home at 8:30pm. He sees his students more than what their own parents do. And you have the nerve to talk about how they do nothing? He has always told me to stay away from your page as he himself like so many other teachers read and see you as a joke. I was born and raised on the South side of town and still live there and like others I am tired of your bashing also.

Code Blue Schools said...

Yes I do pay $800/m for medical but that's neither here nor there. I spent 7 years in your classroom tutoring and obeserving yoyr "hard working" students and listening to teachers bithch about the same thing I'm bitching about. But none of them are doing it for free, like I was, so they need their paychecks and the best way to keep them is to keep their mouths shut about what's going on.

So nothing will change. Just make it toretirement.

Anonymous said...

" I bet you didn't pay $600/mo for your insurance with all bills only being paid 20%." That sounds an awesome deal. I am self-employed, work hard than any FWCS teacher (I taught and know that teaching is quite easy, even under all the piles of paperwork) and pay approximately that (I am classified as a young adult with no problems). And, yes, I have a $10,000 deductible to pay before anything is paid. (All the teachers I know run, yes run, to a doctor for every minor scratch.)

Code Blue Schools said...

As an engineer who tried teaching after retirement, I didn't think teaching was easy. But I doubt if a teacher would think engineering or running petrochemical plants was easy.

Anonymous said...

Most teachers would not run a local pizza joint.

Code Blue Schools said...

On the whole, the academic credentials of teachers have declined, a trend that has been conceded by Randi Weingarten of the AFT. While that needs to change with more selectivity by our teaching colleges, that's not my biggest concern. If our public schools are ever going to fix themselves the push (in my opinion) has to come from teachers. So far that has not happened anywhere. If they're not part of the solution, they're part of the problem.

A recent article in the Economist on our growing inequality, said that teachers' unions had done as much as any Wall Street executive to limit upward mobility in this country. If they would embrace and sponsor change, we wouldn't need state and federal intervention.

gadfly said...

GiaQuinta wouldn't have any problems with Charter schools ... if the teachers were unionized.

I find his narcissism to be way over the top but the School Board, with the exception of Glenna Jehl, continue to accede to his every wish - which makes them all enablers of a sick mind. With a state law in place, GiaQuinta need not have made the concept of Charter schools an issue in Allen County - but he did because he cannot overcome his personal affliction.

Code Blue Schools said...

You'd think at some point someone on the board would tell GiaQuinta to quit making a total ass of himself. But as long as he continues it's just going to point out that most of the board are his puppets and help the case for those advocating choice to get away from the district.

But I don't believe it has anything to do with the unions. There are unionized charter schools that work. It's just what the union is about. Adults or kids.

Anonymous said...

http://www.ajc.com/news/cheating-our-children/scores/

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