Submitted by Paul Nimmo.
As I read the first sentence of the e-mail sent from the district “After carefully reviewing community input”, I knew I would be disappointed. The bile slowly rose as I continued reading and finding that which I knew was pre-ordained would happen… yep, Harrison Prep would now begin at 7:25 a.m.
“After carefully reviewing community input” is much different than “listening to community input”. This decision was made long before they “reached out” with a carefully, horribly timed meeting and short lived survey.
Harrison Prep’s students, routinely score the highest marks in the district, the county, State and has even been ranked nationally. So of course, we want to make the most aggressive, or is that egregious, change to this school! Numerous studies have indicated that middle and high school students benefit from later start times. If I can do the research, I am at a loss as to how well-paid, trained administrators cannot do the same.
Yes it is personal for me. My son is beginning his last year at Harrison Prep. But it should also be personal for the other 719 sets of parents that have students at HP. Remember, Harrison Prep hosts 7 grade levels. While it can be said that the HP High School students will simply be adopting the same times as the other high schools, grades 6-8 will be attending 1 hour and 35 minutes before their peers.
I have been a long-term supporter of the district, both as a student and as a parent. I have waived signs on street corners during levy time. I probably will still waive signs, but with a different message… “No”.
In an attempt to find where this has been discussed during Board meetings, I searched the District website for Board minutes. So much for transparency, as I could not find what I have many times easily found before.
It is time for incumbents to go.
The views expressed in this article are the writer’s own.
You are very correct to know that whenever the district (or any politicians) start off by saying things like “in the effort to have transparency “ or “after community input” or “for the kids” it’s nothing more than fluff words to try justify what they are doing. Why don’t they just man up to their decisions? Let’s post how each board member voted!
Another example of this kind of deception would be in this recent situation. The current diversity specialist at Clover Park school district recently cited a survey he did in order to justify their new “equity” policy. (The one that openly says they want to hire staff and discipline kids based on a “lens of equity”) After requesting the names of the people that were in this said survey, one can quickly see that this was a cherry picked list of participants that are in favor of it and thus it would sway the survey results. It had the liberal teachers, family members, union leaders and principals names but where were the average joe parents on this? This is deception at it’s finest and it’s happening on OUR tax dollars and is being used to push a political agenda. But let’s remember, these are the same people that every election claim to want transparency in the district. They also claim to care about all kids, even those at Harrison prep that will have to get up way earlier than any kid should have to to go to school.
How about this CPSD…..hire more bus drivers!!!! But I suppose that’s hard to do when you keep spending our money on hiring new diversity and equity specialists and creating a whole new department to push your agenda. FYI that position starts at $87k, what do bus drivers make again???
Please remember these decisions as you fill put your ballots! We need change.
John Arbeeny says
What else would you expect from a Board that slavishly follows the “lead” of the Superintendent and administration without question? Negative impact on students? No problem….but bus drivers are happy. It’s not about what’s in the best interest of the students. Rather it is in the best interest of the Superintendent, administration and teachers’ union. This is part and parcel of a string of decisions made and being made for the best interests of everyone but the primary consumers of CPSD’s “product”: students and their parents. Is it any wonder that academic performance has been falling to unimaginable numbers. CPSD is in the bottom 35% of State school districts. What grade would you give them? How about a solid F!
Robert Brown says
I agree with John Arbenny! Clover Park School District used to be a top notch district! Not any more!#
Our district stopped “listening” to parents long ago.
There is no transparency, and honesty is at a bare minimum.
We need a change. We need people who will put the students first, listen to parents, show transparency, and give an honest answer instead of fabricated “fluff”.
Our kids deserve better. Paul, you are correct, the incumbents need to go!
KM Hills says
Thanks for your article. During the levy I don’t know if our paths crossed but I was waiving a “no” sign and I look forward to your help next time. While the most recent Levy passed quite easily it was the narrowest margin in 20 years.
It is encouraging that Harrison Prep has good test scores but OSPI data shows the rest of the District is near the bottom with scores while dollars spent per student are higher than average. It is a shame the District doesnt leave a successful program alone. As my Dad always told me. “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.” The School Board should be trying to replicate the success of Harrison Prep in all the other schools and not having Harrison Prep conform to the other start times.
This is a perfect example of why the District needs new leadership. This primary election season is the perfect time to send that message. Boardmembers Marty Schafer and Alyssa Anderson Pearson must go. The best term-limits are voter imposed.
One last thought . . . Have you seen any other District, in the South Sound, with so many negative submissions to the Suburban Times. To me that is another clear indicator that something is wrong within the leadership of Clover Park Schools.
Jean S Reddish says
Please note that to hold a banner or sign so people can see it is to WAVE.
WAIVE, to give up the right to something, is what the district has done to their senses.
John Arbeeny says
Ahhhh! The wonders of “spell check” when you properly spell the wrong word!
Paul Nimmo says
I certainly open to learning and being corrected in a constructive way. So I will wave “no” signs and will not waive my rights to seek out better board members.