Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Time to update the resume.

It's still not 100%, but from the tone of today's Board meeting I'm seriously discouraged. Thanks to everyone for the wishes for a successful presentation, by all means it was an excellent one. We made them laugh, we made them cry, and the audience gave us a hearty applause at the end. As a matter of fact I would have said it was flawless, shy of one incident, caused by an unnecessary and selfish staff member.
You may have remembered me mentioning a counselor that we got stuck with, because she caused friction wherever she went and the district felt my principal would be the one to handle her. And for a year and a half we did. She had other counselors in tears. She alienated the half of the faculty she came in contact with. She had zero (0, none, nill, nada, nyente) tact when it came to dealing with me and technology issues. But we tolerated her because 99% of the time we she was sequestered in a small corner of the building and we had no contact with her. Did I mention that she is a counselor. Except for during Teacher Appreciation week, when she conviently decided she's a teacher. Because at our school she's really neither. She's also one of those people that insists being called by her title, as in Dr.____, not just Ms.____, or by her first name.
Anyway, we had an awesome presentation, and the principle was wrapping up the whole thing. She mentioned that we have only one counselor, and one intern that is paid for out of one of our high risk grants. At this point this (ahem) counselor starts waving her arms, saying something I didn't hear. She did get the attention of one of the board members who asks the principal again how many counselors we have, saying 'isn't it three?' The principal first tries to deflect it with comments about how this person doesn't have any student load, so they are effectively not a counselor at our school. Another member on the board comes back with 'but you do have three counselors'. This is when our response should have been 'yeah, but you foisted her on us bacause no one else could handle her shit!', but instead we heard 'that was a district decision, we didn't request another counselor'. This is where the board member has the chutzpah, (that's yiddish for cahones) to say 'That isn't true'. Again, we should have returned with 'you lying two faced son of a coyote', but instead my principal just said that they should discuss this some other time and continued on with her closing.
I'm glad that we got the chance to make our case. I'm proud of the presentation we made and I'm proud that we did not just sit back and let things happen to our school. But I can't help feeling defeated.
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A Paperback Writer said...

If I know your principal -- and I do -- she has spent the entire year trying to get rid of that person. She always tries to get rid of anyone she doesn't like. Of course, this time it sounds like it may be deserved. I can recall quite a few when it wasn't -- but you know that story.
Well, I'm glad it's over at any rate.
Personally, I don't see why the school can't stay open but have the boundaries shifted so that it takes in a normal amount of students. Can you explain that to me?

Max said...

Here's the politics as I understand them: We rebuild Olympus Jr. at a time when enrollment in that area is down and west side schools are in desperate need of rebuilding. We then rebuild Wasatch Jr in the same area and still west side schools are waiting to be rebuilt. West side board members campaign on the promise to close underutilized east side schools. My school, physically an east side school yet demographically more like an west side school, gets targeted. In my opinion because of all the east side schools, our patrons are the least able, and least likely, to defend themselves. West side board members get to claim they kept their promise with the least amount of political backlash. It's a win for everybody - except the students.

Jannx said...

Wow, that "counselor" sounds like a piece of work.

I'm glad the presentation went well. I hope things turn out for the good (or even better). Sorry, I'm in my corny mode.

I'll just say, "Good Luck!!!

A Paperback Writer said...

Um, okay.
But you didn't answer my question.

The Gearheads said...

Well, if your school closes that will be a sad day, it seems it has done good for the community and hopefully in 10 or 15 years somebody on the school board will say "The high school I went to changed my life, we should always have that kind of school." In the meantime, realize you put your best into it, and that is all anyone can ask for. Also, if it does close, somebody needs to walk up and bitch slap that Dr. Councelor, PhDipwad.

Max said...

Writer - the answer is that there is no reason they couldn't do it, they just won't because of the politics involved.

Thanks Jannx & Gearheads. The hardest part is not knowing, and we won't know until at least the 5th of May. Talk about keeping us on edge until the very last minute!

A Paperback Writer said...

Oh, okay.

Your Conscience said...

Re: "We made them laugh, we made them cry, and the audience gave us a hearty applause at the end."

Your Conscience responds: Dude, Your Conscience believes you're thinking of "Mr. Holland's Opus"...