Sunday, March 1, 2009

Jerry Weast's Budget Video

For everyone who has followed the issue of the Secondary Learning Centers being phased out and closed:

As you may know, this year Superintendent Jerry Weast did not have the big budget presentation at Rockville High School (complete with taxpayer-purchased poinsettias). Instead, he did a video presentation. CLICK HERE to watch the Superintendent's video of his budget sales pitch is featured on the MCPS website.

It is a short video, only three or four minutes, but interestingly, during the discussion of the employee unions who agreed to forego their cost-of-living increase in order that MCPS can serve 2800 more students, a clip of a student, working at a computer with an adult, is shown.

How ironic, Dr. Weast! Did your video editors realize that the clip is an old one of a SECONDARY LEARNING CENTER STUDENT at Walter Johnson (the very program you are trying to phase out, and close)!

Did your video editors realize that the clip of the secondary learning center student was shot in the "Loft" at Walter of the unique qualities of the secondary learning center at Walter Johnson that enabled students to have access to assistive technology, and ongoing adult support?

The "Loft" was the unique thing about Walter Johnson and its Learning Center that made the program so different than inclusion programs at other high schools. The "Loft" in fact is a model that is used in college settings with students who continue to need accommodations, assistive technology, scribes, quiet test rooms, etc.

So, Dr. Weast, you use a video clip of a successful Learning Center student, in the Loft, doing well, in a program that you are trying to phase out and close in this year's budget.

How do I know this?

The student in your budget video is my son, who is now a junior in college on the Dean's List.

Lyda Astrove

1 comment:

  1. Is Dr. Weast a 21st century superintendent?

    Transparency and open competition in government contracting are the way to go, according to President Obama.

    I wonder whether the federal transparency goals will be passed on to the MCPS folks, or will they take the stimulus money and just hope no one is paying attention?


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