SCUSD Observer

Sacramento, California

Archive for the ‘SAVA’ Category

Here is what’s wrong with charter schools…

At last Thursday night’s board meeting, the first order of business was to review and recommend action on a new charter school petition for the California Academic Vocational Academy (CAVA). The concept for the school is under legal scrutiny by SAVA (Sacramento Academic and Vocational Academy). SAVA claims that CAVA ripped off their program, word for word.

If you read SCUSD’s executive summary of CAVA’s application, you’ll get a very clear snapshot of what is wrong with the entire picture of the charter school “reform” movement. All style, no substance.


Written by scusdobserver

January 27, 2010 at 3:22 pm

Posted in Board Meeting, CAVA, SAVA

Time to Listen Instead of Pretending to Listen

Attention SCUSD board members! You need to collectively get your heads out of the sand and direct the interim superintendent to provide you with the simple costs associated with school expenses (programs and services). Community advocates are on to something important as a possible alternative to lay-offs — it’s time to listen instead of pretending to listen.

It is dreadful public policy-making to have an expectation (stated or not) that community people, parents and teachers must themselves decipher byzantine budget documents in order to do what is the job of the superintendent and her staff.

One example: Why can’t board members direct the superintendent to present a list of every outside consultant and third-party provider (e.g., ALS, SAVA,) employed by the district?

What are these consultants/providers doing and what do they cost? Period.

From this data, you might have a productive discussion (with teachers, administrators, and supporters) about the viability of these services and whether any programs deemed “necessary” could instead be provided on a site-by-site basis.

The proposed cuts (and the imminent threat of teacher layoffs) is spinning out of control and wreaking a detrimental impact on teachers’ livelihoods right now.

A committed group at C.K. McClatchy High School is disentangling pieces of the budget to create a master schedule for students next year.

Here is what McClatchy teachers predict: 50 fewer course sections offered (which translates into 1000-1200 students with holes in their schedules and at least 600-700 unable to take the electives they need to get into college), no library, no EL intervention classes, the destruction of McClatchy’s award-winning music program, and a seriously reduced counseling staff (3 of 4 counselors were pink-slipped).

To think that McClatchy will rebound in the fall when and if the district decides to rescind some of the lay-offs is…

…well…it’s just laughable.

The absurdity of the demand that teachers need to find fiscal ways to fill these budget black holes also seriously impacts their ability to actually do their jobs: teach!

Written by scusdobserver

March 30, 2009 at 2:37 pm