Monday, April 27, 2015

What does APS Supt Valentino know about student discipline (in the APS)?

APS image
Among myriad problems incoming APS Supt Luis Valentino will be tasked with solving is (the lack of) student discipline.  The administration and enforcement of discipline policies is an administrative responsibility.

It will be up to Valentino and his administration to enforce the board's student discipline policies in order to create educationally effective and efficient teaching and learning environment. 

If Valentino looks for a record to guide him, of how and how well previous APS superintendents and their administrations have enforced student discipline policies, he will not find one.

APS does not keep records on student discipline problems and their effect on the learning of other students.  They cannot show you actual statistics on discipline problems; neither historically nor currently.

They don't gather those statistics; they don't compile them.

They don't post them on their award winning website.

Of all of the problems teachers deal with every day, few wear them down and waste more time that students who are misbehaving, and especially those whose misbehavior is disruptive of the education of other students.

Yet, we never talk about it.  I once asked former APS Supt Winston Brooks, why don't we ever talk about student discipline? link  He responded to the question, but not by answering it.

So why don't we ever talk about student discipline?

It's actually quite simple;
  • Writing the (district) policies is an executive responsibility.  
  • Enforcing the discipline policies is an administrative responsibility. 
Ergo, if there are discipline problems as the result of inadequate or inappropriate policies and or if there are problems with inadequate enforcement of the policies;
  • the responsibility for the problems falls on the shoulders of the school board, the supt, and site administrators.  None of whom are inclined to be held actually and honestly accountable for maintaining order in schools.
Rather than being held accountable for surrendering control over school for out of control students, the board and administration chose to simply sweep the problem under the rug.

Journal Editor Kent Walz
They are enabled by the establishment's press; the Journal and the affiliate stations of the NM Broadcasters Assn.  When have they ever investigated and reported upon discipline in schools?

Sure, they cover individual instances of really severe discipline issues; if it bleeds it leads, but never on the culture.  So why not?

Is it because the heavy hitters in the local "press" would rather cover asses than inform democracies?

If not, then what?

Why do we never talk about student discipline problems in the APS; why won't the media investigate and report - if only to report everything is just hunky-dory?

photo Mark Bralley

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