More Activism plus Back To School

20 Jul

I finally got an email from Senator Isakson in response to my email.Take a look:

Dear Mr. Dalton:

Thank you for contacting my office regarding No Child Left Behind. I appreciate your concerns and am glad to have the opportunity to respond.

As one of the authors of President Bush’s No Child Left Behind law, I have a vested interest in this legislation and its impact on our nation’s education system. Overall, our school systems are improving and our students are receiving more of the educational tools they need to compete in the 21st Century. I am especially pleased with the increased accountability under No Child Left Behind. That being said, I do realize that there are some areas that need revision, specifically those dealing with Adequate Yearly Progress, Special Education and non-English speaking students. As we work on reauthorization, please know that I will keep your concerns in mind as we begin to formulate ideas to improve the bill.

Thank you again for contacting me, and I hope you will not hesitate to call on me in the future if I can be of assistance to you.

Sincerely,
Johnny Isakson
United States Senator

Now go back there and read Senator Chambliss’ reply.See anything in common?See any difference between that and the reply from my congressman?There is one thing that particularly bugs and irritates me about these two republican senators.Namely, they both refer to this as President Bush’s education law.What the hell is up with that?I never heard anyone refer to IDEA 1992 as President H.W. Bush’s education act.I didn’t hear anyone referring to the ESEA 1998 law as President Clinton’s education law.And even though President Bush had little to do with actually writing this thing, those loyal to him seem to want to hang this all over him.Whatever happened to bipartisanship which was supposedly so prevalent when it was first passed?

I thank all the legislators who have responded, so far.Perhaps I should issue some letter grades to them based on their responses.Ranking them, my congressman gets the highest mark, Isakson gets a distantly lower mark and Chambliss lags further behind for not even addressing any of my concerns at all.At least Senator Isakson conceded that some changes would be in the works albeit in a more generic fashion.

Moving on….

Today was our first day back at work.Yep, it’s that time and the rest of you teachers can think about when it’s your turn.Our principal welcomed everyone back and then announced that the final results were that we made AYP.

Fully one third of our faculty is brand new.That means that many of those folks that helped us make AYP are no longer present on the team.A lot of those folks were first string teachers.The special education department experienced a rather large turnover, as it always does, with close to half those people who were here last year not returning.Most of the replacements are not first stringers, but folks walking in off the street who have never taught before.

dick

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3 Responses to “More Activism plus Back To School”

  1. Pamela Mari July 23, 2007 at 4:11 pm #

    Hi, I’m the mom of a 9yr old PDD/NOS. Love your info. How can I email you or can i susbscribe to this blog. Right now particularly interested in the concept of “ignoring” a behavior. I see some flaws in the use of this technique in a class my son is to be placed in for the fall. Would love to correspond if you do that sort of thing. Thanks for your time and for all this info

  2. dick dalton July 26, 2007 at 11:55 am #

    I’m not very good at 1:1 correspondence (take that any way you want!) But you do bring up a very good issue that is worth taking up. Just what is the behavior that is to be ignored?

    You’re right, there are some very real flaws in this technique namely:
    – it isn’t carrie dthrough with any degree of fidelity (which causes escalation) and
    2. the function of the behavior is something other than access to attention – If the function is escape, ignoring can also cause escalation of the behavior. This is why assessing the function of behaviors is so important! Failure to match the intervention with the function can result in some terrible disasters!

    dick

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