Saturday, April 19, 2014

WPost Letter: Successful schools do not engage in the obfuscation that Montgomery County has undertaken to keep people from understanding what is going on in them.


  1. The art of obfuscation
    Does not bring elation
    Nor a standing ovation
    But rather consternation
    And public condemnation.

  2. Fact Check?

    Chenoweth says that the downcounty consortium came before the Northeast Consortium. I am pretty sure it was the other way around. The Northeast Consortium project was initiated do deal with the addition of Blake H.S. and to avoid a nasty boundary change process. Also I have memories of a big flap over the Sherwood community opting out of that Consortium process.

  3. In my initial reading of Chenoweth's letter, I also thought that she had mixed up the timing of the DCC and the NEC (the NEC--which involves three high schools--began *before* the five high school DCC). I think she was reflecting on an early public meeting she had attended about the proposed DCC; sometime after that meeting the NEC started. I think that paragraph should have been clearer, giving the date of the DCC planning meeting, and also the dates when both consortia began.

  4. No, I just think she got her facts wrong. She clearly credits the DCC as a Weast thing. Blake opened in 1998, before Weast arrived. The NEC was a Vance initiative.

    This doesn't change the fact that it is a failure, but I'll bet Dana Tofig uses this error to try to discredit the entire opinion piece.

  5. Dr. Weast didn't mix the yeast
    For Dr. Vance was the catalyst
    Regardless who was at the helm
    The result has become mayhem.

  6. Let's put to rest one commonly and often repeated but grossly incorrect - fact. The northeast consortium was NOT created to racially balance the schools in the northeastern part of the county. It was created because the high school were overcrowded and they needed to build a new HS. Rather than go through a divisive boundary process which is devastating to communities, the idea of the Consortium was proposed. Originally the Northeast Consortium (NEC) was not to have any boundaries at all - and the process was going to be called Controlled Choice. Because parents residing in that large area were apprehensive, they did eventually draw "base areas" and the process became Preferred Choice.

    Another fallacious line of thinking is that the consortia make the schools more segregated. Exactly how do you arrive at that conclusion? The racial and socio-economic makeup of a school comes from it's surrounding area. What if we did away with the NEC and reverted to the base areas for the NEC for the three high schools? Would that change the demographics of the schools? Most likely not unless you changed the demographics of the surrounding neighborhoods. Like it or not, our county is not racially and economically diverse in equal amounts from west to east. The school system can't change housing patterns.


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