Wednesday, December 30, 2009

"My child is safe at school."

In the Journal this morning, readers will find a three page ad bought by APS. I assume it is an ad because it includes APS' logo, and because it cannot be found by searching the Journal online.

Within the ad, one section entitled "Parent Survey Shows Parents Believe Students Safe ..."

Every year, a parent survey is done in all public schools.
The survey has twenty questions; ten supplied by the NMPED, five by the local school board, and five are written at the school level.

I cannot remember whether all parents are offered the opportunity to participate, or whether a representative sample is taken. The APS ad does not reveal survey size or any other statistical parameters.

The very first item reads; My Child is safe at school. Parents can, strongly agree, agree, disagree, strongly disagree, or indicate they do not know.

APS claims; 30% strongly agree with the statement, 59% agree, 4% disagree, 2% strongly disagree, and 5% don't know.

Which begs at least one question; how would parents know if their children were safe at school?

The leadership of the APS has chosen to not publish any information on safety (and discipline) in schools. As recently as September of this year, APS admitted it was not compiling crime statistics, had not been for two years, and what few statistics that were compiled, were "not very scientific", link.

A few years ago, the Council of the Great City Schools did an audit of the APS. The audit revealed,

"APS administrators routinely falsified crime statistics to protect the reputations of their schools".
I once sat in a meeting with then Albuquerque High School Principal Tom Savage, who when asked to tell stakeholders the truth about what was going on at his school, said,
"If I told the truth about what was going on at my school, the realtors in my neighborhood would have my neck."
Then Superintendent Peter Horoscak, when asked to tell stakeholders the truth about what crime and discipline in schools, said,
"You can't just tell the truth, you never know how someone might want to use it."
The leadership of the APS will not be honest with stakeholders. If you ask them, and I have, to point to a time, a day, and a place, where they will sit still and answer legitimate questions about the public interests, they will not answer the question.

When the question is, will you tell the truth?, any answer except yes, means no.

That only 5% of the survey respondents indicated that they "do not know" whether their child is safe at school is misleading.

The truth is, 100% of parents don't know whether their child is safe at school.

They just don't know, they don't know.

The APS Student Standards of Conduct are clear and unequivocal. Students are told their character depends on their responding to legitimate questions candidly, forthrightly, and honestly.

There is not one single APS senior administrator or board member willing to be held accountable to any standards of conduct that require truth telling.

School Board President Marty Esquivel, the seniormost executive role model of the student standards of conduct, will not even respond to questions about role modeling of the student standards of conduct; the Pillars of Character Counts, link.

APS Superintendent Winston Brooks, the seniormost administrative role model of the student standards of conduct refuses to step up as well.

He says,
"the standards of conduct that apply to students
do not apply to adults."

Finally, the truth.

photos Mark Bralley

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Let's ask the kids at Jimmy Carter Middle school if they feel safe.
Let's ask the parents...they certainly feel like safety is deplorably low.
Maybe La Cueva and it's feeder schools were the only ones asked?
Maybe site admin hand picks which parents participate, and which do not?
I've never heard of this survey being advertised in my 8 years of teaching at APS.
What a crock-coverup!