Wednesday, February 18, 2015

APS School Board Committee name change

The APS School Board will meet in regular meeting tonight.  The agenda, link, includes;

V. Special Issues
A. Consideration for Approval of the Name Change for the District and Community Relations Committee to the District Equity and Engagement Committee (Discussion/Action)
Presenter: Joseph Escobedo, Chief Equity and Engagement Officer
Action Memo on District Relations Name Change 2-18-15.docx, link
The Action Memo reads;
Approval of Name Change for the District and Community Relations Committee to the District
Equity and Engagement Committee

In December 2014, Superintendent Brad Winter and the APS Board of Education supported a new Office of Equity and Engagement in the district. The change in name and focus of the committee will support the district’s focus on equity and true engagement of all stakeholders in the community. In addition, this committee will focus on issues that are inclusive of all equity issues and will still allow for community dialogue on important issues in the district and community at large.
So what does it all mean?

The board has a Code of Ethics, link.  The 4th reads;
Establish an open, two-way communication process with students, staff, families and all segments of the community.
It is fair to examine the new focus in the light of that ethic.
Is the new focus going to create open and honest two-way communication between the leadership of the APS and the communities and community members they serve?

The smart money is on no. Past and current practice would indicate that they have no intention to move one bit closer to open and honest two-communication with stake and interest holders.

They should have been considering for at least a month now, the idea of establishing permanent community members seats on the District and Community Relations (soon to be District Equity and Engagement) Committee.  Their lack of response means no.

Any answer except yes, even stonewalling and saying nothing at all, means no.

But they are happy to come up with some new descriptors for their communications effort in the hope stake and interest holders won't notice that nothing has really changed.

When the dust settles tonight, there will still be no place, no day, no time when the leadership of the APS will promise to sit and answer questions about the public interests and their public service,
candidly, forthrightly and honestly.

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