Saturday, June 21, 2008

"The children that feed into Schenley are not going to disappear."

Elected Pgh Public School schoolboard member, Tom Sumpter, said, "The children that feed into Schenley are not going to disappear."

WRONG.

If and as Schenley High School closes -- people will depart. They are not going to be here. And most of all -- the city is still bleeding its people.

The city's population is in a tailspin of decline.

Sadly, I'm not sure that the members of the board understand that the families are packing and that many others have already departed.

Thankfully, the Pgh Public Schools is holding a workshop meeting on Monday.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

John K.: Personally, I hoped they would disappear. The smart ones could go to Sylvan learning center and get a good education for less costs and the poorer students, well they can pursue their Constitutional rights to happiness by living on the street or Sec. 8 housing. Still can't find a Constitutional right to an education. I'll keep reading though.

Anonymous said...

Are you sure he didn't mean- these children are not going to disappear, so we need to plan for where they will go before closing schools?

Mark Rauterkus said...

I'm not sure what he meant. He has been confused in the past too. Prior, he said something like, "Schenley (the school and programs) will live on in the hearts of the graduates." Like it will be impossible to close it or kill it.

He (Tom S) has a blind spot in his perceptions, it seems, to me. He does not see the difference between past, present and future.

Of course the school could close and of course it would be dead. Gone. Never again for the future students. Never again for the present students.

This is much like a war veteran situation. WWII is done. Gone. No more WWII -- but some of the veterans still live. But the experiences are but fading memories. Tom S. would say WWII is living on.

Say what???

Do listen to what he says.

Some of the comments are at odds with the truth. There is little hope of getting decisions that make sense when the comments and thinking patterns are without a grip.

The same type of comment was said by Grant O, the boss of the Heinz Endowments the other week. He said that the community of Pittsburgh was at fault for letting the Pgh Public School board continue without holding them accountable. What a blasted lie. The district used to have 40,000 students not long ago. Now it is bleeding 1,000 to 1,500 per year. This school closing is going to drop 5,000 residents from the city in one summer. There are less than 20,000 on its way to 10,000 soon. The exodus is the best way to hold the district accountable.

Problem: They don't see it. It is hard to count what is missing and not present. And, they don't even see them evaporate the district.

Furthermore, the ones that are feed up and depart are the ones that have the means to do so.

bitter idealist said...

I'm not sure John K. -- do you work for Sylvan Learning Centers?!

Did you see the links I put before? Fact is that charters and tutoring and all the rest, including private schools -- have turned out to have the same problems (and usually bigger problems) with the lowest-scoring kids that public schools do. In fact, most studies show that if there's a difference, it's that the public schools do better than all the others.

Who exactly do you think is going to be changing the sheets and helping you to bathe in the retirement home someday? The kids you seem to think don't need an education are going to be some those people. Do you want them to be at the least slightly educated or would you rather they're just bitter and angry? Personally, I'd love if our schools continued to give them all sorts of outlets and opportunities, so that as adults they may be healthy via sports and fitness and have passions and hobbies in the arts, reading, etc.

Anonymous said...

"...the ones tht have the means to do so."

You're right. Have you seen how many homes are for sale? You can pick up really lovely places with charm and room in many southern neighborhoods. Some have moved on and left their former homes to the mortgage companies to deal with. At my age, many empty nesters are looking to move into the city again. They want quiet neighborhoods, and public transportation. They do not want downtown and they want affordable, (not the SS or L-ville areas).

Anonymous said...

Public schools can not cater to everyones individual desires for educating their kids. The costs are just too high. Suburban schools do not fret over providing gifted, IB, performing arts, vo tech, umpteen varieties of special ed etc. They contract out for them or share services among other districts. Yet we in the city are providing all of these services to an ever shrinking population. Time to provide bare bones education in just what is needed to pass the PSSA. Any extras can be paid for by individual users...sort of like the airlines charging for every little thing.....or else we can share services with suburban Allegheny County perhaps thru the Intermediate Unit.

Mark Rauterkus said...

I agree, mostly. I prefer a comprehensive high school that has well rounded offerings but is true to the basics. We need critical thinkers. We need lifelong learners. We need an appreciation for the desire to learn.

We need prudent plans.