Wednesday, October 12, 2011


A READER SPEAKS REALITY OVER THE CON JOB OF BISD'S MAGNET

So I am submitting it here in hopes that it will be met with some true integrity. Thank you in advance. Delusional is the operative word in describing the individuals behind the plan to change BISD's magnet program. This idea is a significant deviation from the School district's mission. The mission of any school district to educate the masses and do that well. Broad based, equitably delivered education is the only, truly successful way to narrow achievement gaps. Not by segregating a very small segment of students based on talent and ability. Further, the WAY BISD has pursued this idea is a joke. No empirical data supporting a rigorous due diligence process has been presented.(And no, neither the recent visit to Dallas ISD's Science and Engineering Magnet nor the very biased Survey just recently submitted to middle school student's does not apply. These steps should have been taken place months ago. Pure CYA moves.) No civic involvement whatsoever short of staging phony board meeting presentations. No mention or implementation of magnet caliber professional development. A quality magnet school begins and ends with the competency of it's faculty. Does BISD leadership think they are simply going to flip a switch and turn on additional magnet caliber teachers? Using the Dallas ISD Science and Engineering Magnet as a 'Model' is asinine. It's a great school but let's look at some facts about this 'Model' school. It's current population is approximately 380 and Dallas ISD's total student population exceeds 150,000. It has NO UIL sanctioned extra curricular activities. Fine Arts, Competitive Sports, Debate, etc., etc. It occupies, along with several other magnet programs, a campus roughly 1/3 the size of Veterans Memorial. And it took many years before this school achieved the national academic prominence it deserves. It was founded in 1982. Finally, BISD has given one story to the rank and file(Toe the Line or you will be punished. Isn't that right, Principal Ameel?) Another one to the students and yet a third to the taxpaying/voting public. Clearly, BISD leadership is lying or displaying a huge amount of incompetency..............or BOTH. And short of the coached Indian Doctors that spoke during a recent Board Meeting, no STISD/IDEA parents I have polled expressed any desire to return their kids to BISD. Changing the location of BISD magnet programs will not elevate those programs to the caliber of STISD's or Idea's curriculum, culture, and faculty competency. And it certainly won't do anything to change the horrendous performance of the the current BISD board.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well written and so true. BISD has enough to do with out trying to compete with others who have been doing a good job for years STISD.

Anonymous said...

Great post, thank you. What is the subject matter of the picture that accompanies this article?

Anonymous said...

Nice post Reader Speaking Reality, although dissing the Hanna Med/Tech as well as the Porter High School of Technology faculty tells me that you really have no data to support your argument. I know all of the teachers at Hanna M/T as well as Porter HS/Tech, and most of the teachers at the SciTech in Mercedes. The teachers at the out of town Magnet Schools are no more qualified than those in Brownsville. Both magnet schools for technology go to the same training at the same place. There is not great plus in the faculty for STISD or Idea; some of the current teachers at IDEA are retired BISD teachers.
Both of the Technology High Schools use not similar, but exactly the same curriculum as mandated by the “Project Lead the Way” programs that both Magnet schools follow. If either school deviates from the curriculum they take the chance of losing their “Certification” to be a certified High School of Engineering.
So for you to say that: ”Changing the location of BISD magnet programs will not elevate those programs to the caliber of STISD's or Idea's curriculum, culture, and faculty competency.”, this tells me that in this instance you really don’t know what you are talking about, Sci/Tech has nothing on The Porter High School of Technology in either curriculum or faculty competency. I will agree that the culture of the STISD may have some advantages over BISD which may come simply from the fact that it is a Magnet only High School.
So in my informed opinion you are wrong on two of the most important things that make a good magnet school, faculty and curriculum, culture can be changed.
Try this, go to a Hanna High School Graduation, a Porter High School and just sit back and listen to all of the scholarships that have been awarded to either school; then go to a STISD graduation which really only takes about 30 or 45 minutes. Then compare the schools that our BISD students have gotten scholarships to with the STISD, there is no comparison, BISD wins that hands down.
So Reader Speaks Reality go back and delete the last paragraph that for some reason you had to put in and piss me off, and you will have a fine post that I can agree with, but get off the Hanna and Porter Teachers because you do not have the knowledge or data to support your claims.

Lupita Reyna

BobbyWC said...

Lupita, I like the way you write - you make some big points but the thing I think concerns most people is the culture issue - I do not doubt BISD is graduating some great minds - but they are great minds because of the person - I suspect most of these students are self taught in a lot of areas - this is naturally part of being above average.

BISD can educate the best with the best education without magnet schools - they need to just make sure the best of the best have access to advance math and science courses at all campuses. In the end how well they perform at the university is about the student and not the teachers - they either work or do not - they either have the IQ or they do not.

The key for any school is providing all students access to the courses and instructors which will allow them to succeed - BISD does not do this - special needs children were abandoned long ago - by middle school many are already on the path to dropping out. BISD just turns a blind eye.

Until BISD gets its head out of its ass concerning the special needs children it should not be expanding any Magnet programs.

What BISD really needs is more advance course offering on all campuses. They need to force the non-magnet teachers to step up to the plate and end mulitiple choice exams while forcing the students to take short answer and essay exams. This is how you prepare them for the work force and college.

This magnet program BS is about making a handful of students shine while leaving the super majority behind.

Again Lupita I do like your post - I like how you went point by point - I have no way of verifying yours or the original poster's points - but I do know you tackled it point by point and this is what we should be teaching our children in the classroom.

This is the first step to quality critical writing.

Thanks Lupita for writing in a way which is direct and to the point

Bobby WC

Anonymous said...

Really Lupita, don't you think the number of scholarships being handed out at a Hannah graduation vs. a STISD might have something to do with the number of students at Hannah vs. STISD and thus how long it would take vs. 45 minutes to award scholarships. Really? certainly you can come up with something better.

Anonymous said...

Whoever the Reader speaking Reality is that wrote this should run for BISD, because this is the type of individual our students, parents and community need.
If, you Presas-Garcia, and your back-end gustable cronies were really concerned about the performance of the district, why don’t you check where BISD is ranked statewide compared to all other school districts. I will make it easy for you.. you can go to www.schooldigg.com which has ranked every school district in the State of Texas. It appears that BISD is ranked 567th out of 953. Which for you, Presas-Garcia and your highly intelligent cronies equates to BISD being essentially ranked near the lower ¼ ranking of all schools in the State of Texas. Resounding !
Its going to do wonders for the BISD ranking when you pull the magnet students away from Hannah and Porter (you know, the ones who don’t want to go), and take those students that have the scores and achievement level to keep Hannah and Porter performing somewhat marginally, to take a fall. What a master plan you put together Presas-Garcia and BISD board. It is plans like these (or lack thereof) that has earned BISD a ranking in the ¼ lower tier ranking.
We all know what you are about Presas-Garcia, games, narcissitic games. You are not in the least bit concerned about the students at Veterans. Could you pull Ms. Ameel’s educational background and resume, didn’t BISD replace her with someone from the Department of Transportation? Interesting move. Again, moves like this is what is earning BISD an ever so stellar ranking.
As this reader points out, when did you, Presas-Garcia and the BISD assemble a community panel to really pursue how the community including parents, Veterans’ students and Hannah/Porter magnet students really feel about this? By the way community involvement including a community research panel comprised of students and parents has been one of the key components to the success of every magnet school across the country. --- Why doesn’t BISD take a breath and assemble a community panel? – Oh, wait, that doesn’t apply here, only narcissistic games.
I want to end my comment with the only thing that matters, which are the students of Veterans Memorial (and all BISD students). The Veterans’ students came forth independently (and I am hoping the investigation of Ms. Ameel bears this out), in a mature, educated fashion, displaying leadership, and voiced their opinion of displeasure for making Veterans a magnet school. Instead, Presas-Garcia and your BISD cronies, what message did you send to these students? Message to Veterans Students from BISD: Your opinion doesn’t matter. These students will go on to be mature contributing adults of society, with very high aspirations and goals for themselves, professionally and personally. You, Presas-Garcia and your BISD cronies are sending a message to these students and future leaders that they should consider twice before taking their own futures in their hands if they live within the BISD system. Because, as far as the BISD is concerned, their opinions and futures that they are speaking up for don’t matter, it is the narcissistic, self-serving political games of BISD that really only matter in the long run.
It appears that the students of Veterans that spoke up for their futures are really the ones displaying true leadership here.

Anonymous said...

Lupita,
Thanks for responding. Your comments are appreciated. The piece was done in haste during a busy afternoon and after finally having an opportunity to read it again, I can see how you perceived I 'dissed' the BISD magnet faculty members. I apologize as that was never my intent. My intent was to respond to BISD officials that have publicly stated their intention to allow ALL students applying for magnet programs admission. Since you are well aware of Project Lead the Way Certification, certainly you are aware of the rigorous and time consuming certification requirements for the faculty members as well. So if the Engineering Magnet's population expands from say 150 to 300, where are the additional faculty members going to come from? My point of emphasis was on additional teachers not the current ones. I disagree with your assertion that "I don't know what i am talking about. Since you "....Know most of the teachers in Mercedes...", then you must know some of my child's teachers. Such as his Intro into Engineering Design teacher,J.Konecny. A former Boeing lead engineer with a degree in Aerospace Engineering from M.I.T. Or his Environmental Science teacher, J. Segura. A triple major from the University of Maryland: Biology, Chemistry, and Physics with a Masters in Genetics. Or possibly his Chemistry teacher, A. Lal. A former Army Ranger with a Masters in Molecular Biology from the University of Southern California. These type of instructors are hard to find in this day and age. So the question remains. How does BISD scale their magnet faculty to accommodate more magnet students?
As a SciTech parent, I have witnessed it's culture firsthand. Things such as cell phones and laptops are commonplace. Student belongings left in lockers with no locks on the them and the honor system prevents any theft of said items. An Administration devoid of any petty, clickish behavior. No intimidation, bullying, or shallow retaliation tatics imposed upon the faculty either. So I agree to disagree with you on the notion that BISD culture can be changed to match that of it's new competition. Not at the campus level or at the currently toxic 'Glass Palace'. And as to "data", a previous poster reflected an important point. Prudent statistical analysis would involve measuring the amount of scholarships awarded as a percentage of the total graduating class size. Not as a simple stand alone quantity or using time as a function. Surely, you do not expect the readers of this blog to believe the notion that more prominent Universities award academic scholarships to more BISD students than to SciTech students as a percentage of their respective graduating class size. Again, please accept my apologies for offending you.

Anonymous said...

Very nice way of saying, "Eat Shit"

BobbyWC said...

People like you cannot live without making things look bad when they are not - how sad your life must be

Bobby WC

Anonymous said...

That was not my intent. On the contrary, this person used his/her mastery of the english language to make Lupita look like a fool on a couple of posts that were very informative. Lupita's cockiness got her a very polite tongue lashing, it wasn't my attempt at a little humor.

Anonymous said...

Gee..mastery of the english language. (referring to the person who is "Reader speaking Reality". Just saying that mastery of the english would be a great skill for someone who sits on the BISD. As opposed to some of those who currently do on the BISD that can't even spell, much less articulate a post as eloquently as "Reader speaking Reality"...