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Goner Message Board / Memphis / i must be entirely insane.
Posted: May 9, 2006 8:15 pm
 
i just applied to teach at memphis city schools. i don't know what's more scary...teaching at memphis city schools or me teaching, in general. heh.
Posted: May 9, 2006 8:17 pm
 
Wha?
I thought you were supposed to go and travel the world now? Go work at Grahmwood and kick my kid's teacher's ass.
Posted: May 10, 2006 12:20 am
 
I teach there. It's not so bad.

Hey, I 'm doing some of the interviews for teachmemphis. Maybe they'll assign you to me. If not, make sure that when they get to the "Do you think it's fair to hold all students accountable (poor/rich) to the same academic standards..." question, you say YES! If not, hang it up.
Posted: May 10, 2006 1:51 am
 
i was thinkin bout goin back to highschool...DAH DUH DUH.
Posted: May 10, 2006 2:53 am
 
"Do you think it's fair to hold all students accountable (poor/rich) to the same academic standards..."

R-A-C-I-S-M!!! Jim Crow-ism!!!

Seriously, tho, what portion of candidates answer No to that? Therein lies the problem ...
Posted: May 10, 2006 2:58 am
 
I'm pretty interested in this, Mark. I've had kids in the city schools for a very long time. Seems like the "Optional" program is just another "us vs. them". My kids are still (I've had kids there for 15 years) at Snowden...in the Optional program. And, while I love Snowden, and think there's a good "balance" there, I know the whole Optional program is just institutionalized racism.
Where do you teach, and do the teachers also recognize this?
Posted: May 10, 2006 3:06 am
 
I agree re: The Optional Program. Are there still miles long lines outside the board for kids to get into the out-of-district spots in the Optional schools? While I think Snowden and Idlewild are really good schools, I doubt you would have to have an "Optional" program to have a good school. I went to junior high school at West in West Memphis and I have to say that was one of the best schools I ever went to, including Central High, an Optional School. Who whudda thunk it? (Bad grammar taught at Lausanne)
Posted: May 10, 2006 4:15 pm | Edited by: MATAlac
 
Well, I know MCS folks and access to the ivory towers that are Snowden and Grahamwood as a green teacher are next to unheard of. They usually get one or two new teachers a year since its such a choice school and teachers never leave.

What you have to look forward to is some sort of school fair, where all schools try to get new faces to go to Frayser, Whitehaven and Hickory Hill, places that are basically revolving doors. Some girl once told me that to get around this she was determined to be a regular sub at Snowden/Idlewild/Peabody until she got in good with the principal. As far as I know she's still sub-ing almost every day for the past couple years.

Basically, network and get ready for politics. Good luck!
Posted: May 10, 2006 4:31 pm
 
My daughter will be teaching in Memphis this fall....she taught in the 9th ward in New Orleans for the last 5 years.....I think she could handle any school here after that
Posted: May 10, 2006 9:59 pm | Edited by: elle
 
yeah i'm sure it's going to be a huge pain in the ass, but i'm not exactly planning on being a career teacher here in memphis. if i get in a revolving door type of school, it'd not be as horrible. i wouldn't feel entirely doomed. i'm doing one of two things: teaching here until i get my masters or teaching here until i transfer out somewhere else to get my masters. the latter of which is probably more along the lines of what i am looking to do, meaning i'll only be teaching for a year. (of course i won't bring that up in the interview. heh.) my main focus is for me to get through my masters and my doctorate and teach college, not high school.

my dad brought up that maybe i should try to teach over in arkansas too. i'm not entirely sure.

i'm pretty much only qualified to teach history, and probably that only to high schoolers. so that kind of limits my options.
Posted: May 11, 2006 7:33 am
 
What I have noticed, at least after 4 years with a child enrolled at Idlewild Elementary, is that there is no mandated (or consistently adhered to) schedule for recess. As a public school student and SAT scholarship recipient, I advocate recess as the most important facet of public schooling, in fact I advocate recess as the only thing that got me to the point of winning the dadgum scholarship money. Where has the playground gone?
Posted: May 11, 2006 3:38 pm
 
Optional" program is just another "us vs. them".

I have fought with this injustice in my head for years, but being a student in the optional program, I am thankful for it. I took a non-optional class or two in high school (cause I was lazy in highschol), and it was not the pace or the caliber of teacher that was different, it was the students desire to be there. This attitude created a lack of trust between student and teacher and this created tensions and attitudes that were not good in a learning environment. The teacher had to spend more time on decipline and less on teaching. In the optional program most students wanted to excel and enjoyed being there, I think that makes a big difference.

Also, I think fitness is vital to childrens education, but they should get that at home as well, turn off the video games and tv and join a sports team. I think education should be well rounded, students especially at the elem level should be learning about music, art, and health together with math and reading.
Posted: May 11, 2006 4:22 pm
 
Does Arkansas pay more? There were several teachers who were from Memphis that I had (granted eons ago) who specifically came over to teach at West Junior High. And like I said, that school was stellar.

I completely agree with what lute says above by the way. Things like physical activity have to be reinforced at home. I don't want to give many excuses though, BUT when the activities offered are few and far between (just mattresses for flipping instead of playgrounds in the projects), I can understand why some kids start getting into other things or not wanting to venture around. At Boystown, those ghetto kids had a lake, 3 fields, basketball court...they were pumped about that part of being in virtual lockdown at least!
Posted: May 11, 2006 4:28 pm
 
Sherwood has a huge playground behind the school and a small one in front for the younger tots. We played lots of kick ball and jump rope. I remember one year someone (i am guessing not a student, it was too anatomically correct ) spray painted a nude girlie on a tree, we didn't get to play that day, sad, sad day.
Posted: May 11, 2006 4:33 pm
 
That is one thing about this town that I will miss--the plethora of parks. It is really unlike anyplace else. Where it is a liquor store on every corner in Memphis or a bar on every corner in Chicago, there is a park on every corner here. Not to say I don't get pissed off trying to find an open liquor store in Portland, but for the kids, it is awesome.
Posted: May 11, 2006 6:20 pm
 
hey we have just as many churches as liquor stores
Posted: May 11, 2006 6:36 pm
 
I have fought with this injustice in my head for years, but being a student in the optional program, I am thankful for it.

I feel like this, too. I am very thankful all my kids have gone through the Optional program, and CLUE too.
I also think Snowden trys very hard to be "inclusive" with all the kids.
But, I really don't agree with the program in principle because of the division it sets up, and the fact that the kids are held to different standards.
However, I have no idea of what a solution would be.

In the optional program most students wanted to excel and enjoyed being there, I think that makes a big difference.
Parents make the difference. If a kid is disruptive and doesn't want to learn something is going on in the home. I think most little kids love to learn things, but they have to be paid attention to and taught from the time they are practically infants.
Posted: May 11, 2006 6:38 pm
 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
hey we have just as many churches as liquor stores

Where would you rather frequent?
Posted: May 11, 2006 6:40 pm
 
I also think that if teachers were paid what they were worth the schools wouldn't have so many problems. Good luck, elle...teaching is one noble profession! I could never face 30 kids day in and day out.
Posted: May 11, 2006 7:31 pm
 
Man my elem did kinna suck in that they thought I was dumb, but I really just needed glasses, my mom really pushed them to keep me in the optional program. I got behind in the third grade because I could not see. Took me a couple of years to get caught up, but when I did look out. I didn't get into clue until Jr. High because of that shit. I remember my sixth grade teacher almost laughing at me when I said I wanted to be a doctor, guess we will see who will be laughng soon.

Where would you rather frequent?

Well, they don't drink at church (unless your catholic), so I'll go with liquor store.
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:23 am
 
I don't think the "optional program is racism" argument has any validity at all. One school I'm at has a partial optional program, and the racial make-up is less caucasian than anything else. When providing an education across the board, you have to have some type of program that provides a challenge for students who learn at a faster pace. Why should they be bored to death having to wait on everyone else to catch up? If there isn't an optional program, you will lose those students to private schools or home school.
Unfortunatley, there are a number of students who could care less about being at school. While some of that(or all of it) is learned at home, alot of teachers make it worse by not providing a challenge for their students. If a teacher wants more motivated students, they might want to try being a more motivated teacher.
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:45 am
 
I don't think the "optional program is racism" argument has any validity at all.
Sometimes it seems that way from the outside looking in. You look through the kid's annuals and 98% of the "traditional" classes are black. The optional classes are at least 60 or 70% white. I don't know why it is this way.
you have to have some type of program that provides a challenge for students who learn at a faster pace. Why should they be bored to death having to wait on everyone else to catch up?
But, I certainly agree with this. I can't even remember what it was like when I was in elementary school. I was one of those fast learners...I think I spent a good amount of time tutoring (if you can call it that) other kids in my class.
My kids have never had a bad teacher at Snowden, and I consider that something of a miracle. Central's been a bit different for the two oldest in that respect, and their grades have suffered somewhat. I've been a couple of rounds with Alex's PreCal teacher this year, and finally gave up because she's wack. Alex told me she was, I didn't believe him, he was right.
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:52 am
 
Also, one of the biggest gripes I have against it is that the Optional kids (in Middle School and High School) don't operate on the 4.0 scale, but on a 5.0 scale. They bump their averages up a whole point. I don't understand this at all. Alex is at Central, and a C plus student, but his GPA makes it appear he's a B plus student. This seems to me that it makes it harder for the non-optional kids to get scholarships, etc.
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:08 am
 
Unfortunatley, there are a number of students who could care less about being at school. While some of that(or all of it) is learned at home, alot of teachers make it worse by not providing a challenge for their students. If a teacher wants more motivated students, they might want to try being a more motivated teacher.

DINGDINGDINGDINGDING! GOOD ANSWER!!!!
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:10 am
 
I lucked out with the 5.0 scale and it did help me get bumped up into the Top 10 percentile of graduates across all of MCS as well as getting easier entry into college. And I was a SHITTY student in high school. Coast-o-rama. I did not take anything seriously until I was already into my sophomore year in college.
Posted: May 12, 2006 2:06 pm
 
I already made it through the teachmemphis interview...it wasnt too bad. But the questions were bizzare. "Have you ever had a conflict with a colleague?"; I think it's called behavorial interviewing. We're moving from Fayetteville AR in JUne and hoping to hell I get hired as govt or history teacher.

Is the optional program a school choice program?
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:21 pm
 
I had that same question too--"How would you handle a conflict with a colleague?" Um, you are asking a licensed social worker this, my man. It does blow my mind how many people make work an awful place to be and how much time Human Relations and Unions spend on conflict resolutions between employees, though. I stay out of everyone's way--show up early and leave early.
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:27 pm
 
Is the optional program a school choice program?
Optional school is a "higher" ed program. I've got a lot more to say about everything that's been said here, but I'm still trying to formulate it all in my brain before I throw it out here.
My main beef is that optional program is, at face value, a cop out. Not that it's bad for kids, by any means, but it says to me, the parent and taxpayer, "Here's a program of better way of learning that all kids can benefit from, but we only have the resources to apply it to a select few".
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:29 pm
 
I had that same question too--"How would you handle a conflict with a colleague?"
This question also opens the dialogue between the prospect and employer to ask "have you ever used a flame thrower out of malice?".
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:48 pm | Edited by: Uptight White
 
How would you handle a conflict with a colleague?

What's the "correct" answer?
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:50 pm
 
"Here's a program of better way of learning that all kids can benefit from, but we only have the resources to apply it to a select few".
That's kind of what I'm trying to say in my inarticulate way.
And, the GPA thing makes absolutely no sense.
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:52 pm
 
I had that same question too--"How would you handle a conflict with a colleague?"

Well, some people have a really hard time answering this question. Either they say "no, i get along w/everyone (B.S!)" or they tell you about how so and so did this and that and never include themselves as part of the problem or solution. You don't want people working with children if they can't work with adults. You also don't want people who rely on the "blamethrower". All of the questions are designed to give the interviewer an idea of how you think, solve problems, level of dedication and responsibility, and your ability to communicate. Nothing you shouldn't be able to handle if you plan on being a teacher.
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:54 pm | Edited by: fierydrunk
 
I really feel that by asking that question, they are screening to see how much potential time will be wasted trying to baby that person at work. But then again, I work in a medical environment full of massive egos and stressful. long days for said egos. They have flipped off the handle at me in ways that I have never dealt with at any other job...I just assert myself and end up walking away. They'll try to get into a 20 minute long back & forth argument if you even try to have them understand your position. And typically within a couple of hours, they have forgotten they have yelled at you and its all smiles again!

Anyway, OPTIONAL SCHOOLS (sorry y'all...you know how this board is)!!!!
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:56 pm
 
Oh, a good answer would be to give an example of a conflict that actually affected your work relationship w/the person or thing that caused it. Show how you analyzed your part of it, discussed the issue with the other party(ies), and worked towards a resolution. If don't have a real-life situation to reference, then describe the process that you would go through given the opportunity. Just don't say "I get along w/EVERYONE!!! he-he-he!" No one's buying it.
Posted: May 12, 2006 4:56 pm
 
alot of teachers make it worse by not providing a challenge for their students. If a teacher wants more motivated students, they might want to try being a more motivated teacher.


I know White Station is held at exception, but I did not find there to be much of a difference in the teachers motivation. Literature may have been an exception, the clue program was way better than any regular or optional class, except because I went into clue late, I missed grammer. They just kinna assume you will learn from reading tons.

The grading scale did get crazy, I think the valedictorian of my class had a 6.0. He took all college level courses for two years.
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:14 pm
 
Literature may have been an exception, the clue program was way better than any regular or optional class, except because I went into clue late, I missed grammer.

I love this sentence.
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:22 pm
 
I answered it honestly and described an actual conflict with another teacher and how I resolved it. I teach in an overcrowded school and the guy that teaches in my room during my planning hour wasnt to good at stopping his students from messing with my stuff. I told him to fix it and he fixed it. I guess that is what they are looking for, passive vs assertive. It makes sense I just wasnt expecting it.

So how does the optional program choose who particpates¿
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:32 pm
 
Academics and behavior. My kid is finishing out his Kindergarten year at one of the best schools in TN, Grahamwood. The teacher is a fucktard, though. I appreciate everything she's taught him, and he has done well academically, but she's also an old bitty, trying to shove ADHD scrips on him because she doesn't do discipline well.
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:32 pm
 
Anyway, my wife is terrified that he won't get in to the optional program.
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:35 pm
 
They test them in. My oldest was reading at 4, so no problem. The other two went to a private Kindergarten that is loosely affiliated with Snowden. They give the tests to KKs at the end of the kindergarten year, and most all of the kids test in. This led to another problem with my two youngest, though. They have "late birthdays". Alex tested into optional, but had to do KK at Snowden. The baby is brilliant though, and it quickly became apparent that he shouldn't do KK again. It's very rare that they'll put a kid up a grade in MCS, but the teachers lobbied so hard for Jackson to go into first grade that they gave him more tests and moved him ahead. He will be going into the 7th grade in August and is 11 years old.

The testing in is another problem, though. What about just normal kids who don't know how to read or write do math in KK? I mean, that's what they're doing in school, right? Plenty of great kids with great parents don't know how to do all that stuff when they start school! Non-optional kind of stigmatizes them, though they will test at any time. If your kid is in 2nd or 3rd and it's obvious that he needs to be challenged more they'll test them then.
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:37 pm
 
Oh yeah...behaviour too. But that's also a problem. Kids that are 5 or 6 shouldn't really be expected to sit down and shut up all the time.
Posted: May 12, 2006 5:51 pm
 
What about just normal kids who don't know how to read or write do math in KK?

This is one of my problems with the educational system at large. I simply lucked out by getting an accelerated, great education from age 3 (Montessori program) and was reading at 4 too. It doesn't mean I was any smarter than a kid who doesn't get the opportunity to get a head start. Those kids that don't start on stuff until they are 5 or 6 could be just as deserving of and beneficial to an "optional" program. Simply because a kid has gotten that jumpstart, they naturally will test better and get the attention from the teachers. I coasted in public school for years after going to Lausanne from preschool to grade 5...and I was adored by the teachers, invited to CLUE (or TAG as they call it in Arkansas) etc.

I guess what I am saying is the set-up is pretty unfair and focused more on making districts, schools and teachers look good rather than effectively teaching as many students as possible. And before everyone flips out, this isn't typically the teachers fault at all.
Posted: May 12, 2006 6:17 pm
 
He will be going into the 7th grade in August and is 11 years old.

I am sure your kid is smart and all, but I don't think this is why the education system hold kids back. It has to do with social development as well. You don't want your baby learning about blow jobs from 14 year olds in the lunch room.
Posted: May 12, 2006 6:43 pm
 
I've only been teacing 4 yrs but I am convinced that we need a system that benefits the advanced kids AND the not so advanced kids. An Americanized version of the Brit system where kids can get technical training so they can get a decent job when they graduate. I like the idea of moving kids on that need more of an advanced curriculum but we need to look out for the kids left in the old system too.
Posted: May 12, 2006 6:48 pm | Edited by: fierydrunk
 
I have always thought this should be a consideration, esp. once kids hit age 12/13. But I also feel they aren't paying enough attention to the fact that kids all learn in different ways and a really smart kid may be hiding underneath a completely difficult behavior problem or a lackadaisical attitude about school and will challenging to teach, but um that is the job.

Again, if the paid more the profession would probably attract people who would be willing to try different things. But the way the system is set up (i.e. like it is a business and nothing but), it can be demoralizing for smart, caring teachers. My sister-in-law taught for 2 years in the NYC school system and just ditched. It was a disaster.
Posted: May 12, 2006 6:59 pm
 
but I don't think this is why the education system hold kids back. It has to do with social development as well. You don't want your baby learning about blow jobs from 14 year olds in the lunch room.

Don't I know it! All my boys were born in October, so I've been through this three times. I was more than happy for the first two to have that extra year. It was a little different with Jack, though. He had been at Evergreen for three years (three times a week before KK) and all of the children he had grown up with were going into 1st grade at Snowden. They put him in KK at Snowden for three months, but he was miserable without his friends, and it was obvious that another year of KK would have been detrimental as he went in reading and doing math on a 3rd and 4th grade level, and his IQ is at 147 so...
My kids are all six years apart so, because of his older brothers, his social skills were pretty advanced too.
It's only really started being a problem this year, and it's not a real problem, but some of the middle school kids are way too "fast" for my liking.
Posted: May 12, 2006 7:11 pm
 
I like the idea of moving kids on that need more of an advanced curriculum but we need to look out for the kids left in the old system too.

Unfortunately, it's the kids in the optional program that get the most attention. This seems kind of bass-ackwards to me, especially since the way it is set up the traditional kids are also perceived as being "slower".
Posted: May 12, 2006 7:21 pm
 
This seems kind of bass-ackwards to me

That's the way the education system works. The experianced and better teachers get assigned to AP classes while the new teachers get the lower level classes. It doesnt make a lot of sense from student perspective. But teachers will say that they have put in their time and deserve the advanced kids. I dont know what the solution is there.
Posted: May 12, 2006 7:40 pm
 
I dont know what the solution is there.

We go back to putting kids with problems in "special" schools wehe no one ever hears from them again.

or begin doing botched labotomies on problem children.
or use stupid children as organ donors for smart kids.
or start making people realize that to really make these problems go away we need to realize that everyone has social responsibilty and they need to stop being self-centered jackasses.
Posted: May 12, 2006 7:47 pm
 
Hear hear!

I hate that attitude "Well, I deserve the better students because I myself am better." That is patently insulting. I lucked out one year at Central when a brilliant teacher from North Carolina moved to town and came to CHS. They made her take half of the Geometry class I was in (for a repeat time as I failed once and I was doomed to fail again with the teacher we had, who didn't understand the subject AT ALL and was trying to teach us right out of the book).

Thank god for her. She made 3/4 of us, the identified dumbasses in math, A students in math! By the 3rd week of her teaching us and yeah, babying our egos a bit, I had a fucking A and completely was getting math for the first time in years. They moved her to Honors by the next year.
Posted: May 12, 2006 7:50 pm
 
Here's another thing I don't like and don't get...
The whole school system, both the optional and traditional programs, is set up on this kind of reward system now. They give kids CANDY to complete their tasks. This has been going on for three or four years. They give them tickets that they can redeem for time on the computer (read: messing around on the computer) instead of reading time in the morning.
I'm also not crazy about the AR Reading program either. Jackson doesn't read a thing for pleasure. He's been taught that reading is only for cause and effect...read the story, take the test, earn points to go spend on candy or crap at the "AR Store".
Posted: May 12, 2006 7:52 pm
 
That's it, fiery. The "dumbasses" should be getting the BEST teachers, not the other way around!
Posted: May 12, 2006 7:57 pm | Edited by: fierydrunk
 
I am telling you, it was such an epiphany to have an excellent teacher in a class that was just so frustrating and incomprehensible to me. I felt so much better about myself and it affected me positively overall. Yeah, I was a complete stoner, but I went to class, completed my work and excelled in a few classes. I was really proud of how well I did in Geometry. I still am.
Posted: May 12, 2006 8:08 pm
 
In the business world if some part of the company is losing money or whatever they send in somebody that knows what they are doing and has the skills and experiance to fix the problem. Education is the opposite. Not that education should follow a business model all the way. Theyre not the same thing but here the educators could take some tips.
Posted: May 12, 2006 8:13 pm
 
The whole school system, both the optional and traditional programs, is set up on this kind of reward system now.

Let's see:
Society says that it's cruel to use various types of corporal punishment to get students to behave, so that was taken out. Teachers (most) try to get parents involved to help, but not enough do. So many schools try to bribe students to get them to do what they are suppossed to do in the first place.

I know we should be teaching kids to do the right thing for the right reason. Most teachers try to do that. Unfortunately, many parent's general consensus is that "you can't tell me or my child shit. They only have to listen to me. I make the rules." And if that's the case, which it often is, and the parent isn't modeling positive behaviors at home, what else can a teacher do? We still have to teach whatever is in the curriculum on top of all that. I know it's lame, but right now, there are very few options afforded the classroom teacher anymore.
Posted: May 12, 2006 8:23 pm
 
I know it's lame, but right now, there are very few options afforded the classroom teacher anymore.

I know. I don't blame the teachers. At all. I just think it's a dumb system. My kid's a little chubby, he doesn't need candy. And I think reading needs to be taught as something that is fun, as it is. Not as a chore you have to get through to get more candy.
Posted: May 12, 2006 8:39 pm
 
I agree. I can't really blame all the teachers when they need real leadership that is providing them with options and ways to be creative other than the idea of bribery to meet standards. That is just sad. It isn't the way the world operates and it is a set up to let kids grow up thinking that they will get rewarded everytime they do something they should be doing. External motivators aren't everything, just like I suppose paying teachers more would not neccessarily ensure better ones.

Plus...candy???? Why not something they like that is good for them or maybe not harmful, like a free video rental or something?
Posted: May 12, 2006 8:40 pm
 
what happened to stickers, not good enough for kids there days?
Posted: May 12, 2006 8:49 pm
 
It isn't the way the world operates and it is a set up to let kids grow up thinking that they will get rewarded everytime they do something they should be doing.

Exactly. My kids get money for "special" chores, but not regular old chores.

I'm for "no homework" passes, or something, when kids do something exceptional. That makes sense doesn't it? If you make all A's for 6 weeks you don't have to do your homework once a week or something. I do realize the problem with that is that it's all about the numbers and the money. Teachers can't give rewards in line with doing good work because the whole school year rises and falls on those bloody TCAP scores.
Posted: May 12, 2006 8:55 pm
 
The Geometry Teacher of the Century gave us the prize of getting to sit out of looking over the test if we scored a 90 or above. Otherwise, you had to spend the rest of the period redoing proofs. We got to roam the halls. They'd probably never go for that these days, being all afraid of teenagers: "Oh my GOD!!! They are on MySpace!!!!!"
Posted: May 12, 2006 9:09 pm
 
We used to get to go work in the library for prizes. I loved it! Or we got to go to the Jr. High pep rallies if we did well in class. Or, extra recess time.
A little more in line with our successes than a Snickers bar.

"Oh my GOD!!! They are on MySpace!!!!!"
Alex told me to stay off his profile last night. You would not BELIEVE what a great tool MySpace is for keeping up with your kids, and all their friends.
Posted: May 12, 2006 9:40 pm
 
It really is hilarious (well, not if I were a parent, I am sure) how they post all this tell-all crap like parents can't just go in and check it out!

I am getting more than annoyed at how it is literally on the news every 5 seconds.
Posted: May 12, 2006 9:46 pm
 
My oldest is old enough for me to be one of his "friends" on MySpace. (Check out my friends for that handsome "John S."!) Alex would CROAK if I sent him an add! It is totally fascinating. I'm able to keep up with all of his friends, and their friends. Course, I've known most of these kids since they were 4 years old, so it's doubly fascinating. Some of it is kind of disturbing, but when I think of what I was doing at 17...
Still, it is so funny (and not so funny, too) because they think they're invisible.

My mother sent me one of those crack pot BEWARE emails yesterday about MySpace. Too late Ma...
Posted: May 12, 2006 9:50 pm
 
Don't have time to keep adding with this, but I gots a few things to add.

Being a parent of a snowden kid, one topic that comes up over and over again is how MCS starts kids strong with alot of great optional progs for elementary then falls off as they head to jr/sr high. Some parents talk about breaking it off and sending their kids to private schools. Being a product of that realm, I conclude that there was more social advantages than academic. I never passed a single math class during H.S. and the miracle worker that Firey spoke about didn't come along until 5 years later at Jr College. and she got me thru 3 semesters of stuff I had no earthly business getting into.

Carefully not trying to bruise some Central H.S. pride on this board, I don't see my son in a private or public secondary school in this city. I acknowledge there are some real exceptions, but as a whole, its 'their' system now and it has to cater to the LCD rather than the gifted. Not like I push my kid to be an over achiever (He didn't want to do CLUE, but most of his friends are in it) and force him on some college prep track, but I'd like for him to go to a place where the teachers have seen some of the world beyond UT Martin.
Posted: May 12, 2006 10:02 pm
 
MATAlac, what are you going to do with your kid? How old is he? I'm totally in that boat, even though both the older boys did Central. John's experience was particularly bad, as all his Snowden friends jumped ship to the suburbs in 7th grade.
White Station is about the only other option, but I don't want to send Jackson to the Gestapo school. He worries about succeeding enough. And, several of Alex's friends went to WS but wound up back at Central because they couldn't stand the "lack of diversity".
Jack's too smart to send to Central, but I don't want (and can't afford) private school. His father went to CBHS, but that's not really a good option in my book.
Posted: May 12, 2006 11:45 pm
 
I went to CBHS for some of high school, but in the lower level classes. I have to say for the smart kids, it (and MUS) will have probably the best high end teachers (Lit, Physics, Math, Bio) in the region. I was in the tier of mostly jocks and drugged out rich kids, and learned next to nothing there besides how to throw good punches and duck. Its pricey and if you need a discount/scolarship you'd probably have to be in a catholic parish. I ended up going to (and eventually dropping out of) that other catholic h.s. on McLean, of which I know next to nothing about whats going on there these days.

My son is nine, and his success at school and other activities are the magnet that keeps me in orbit. I had designs to get him into a sweet school district in Upstate NY with a phenominal near 90% college acceptance rate. The rest of the story is that I was overruled by my ex, moved back here to a hotel room like apt. in VECA, got a pretty good gig, and get to hang out with him almost daily.

To answer your question, we're probably going the way like those Snowden people who go out to the burbs, only we are probably going to leave for the Northeast or Pacific Northwest where the family/job situations look good, and education standards are head and shoulders above what they are here. We're doing year by year right now, which works out for the ex also since she's an MCS shell shocked teacher, and we only have one child in the system.
Posted: May 13, 2006 12:00 am
 
Portland is having massive school probs, by the way. But there are at least 3 public HS in the city that put both White Station and Central to shame. It isn't a good district overall, however; they can barely keep schools open and are closing a bunch every year.
Posted: May 13, 2006 12:06 am | Edited by: elle
 
i just couldn't imagine dealing with teachers that wouldn't care. i was really really lucky to have some phenomenal teachers who challenged me the entire way through my education. but i was in GT and honors and AP courses the entire time, so i never really could get OUT of being challenged. heh. the only time i was bored was when i got stuck in gen ed classes where they didn't have accelerated programs.

of course, i wasn't in the memphis city school system at all ever, so there's probably why i never saw the complacency. the thing that struck me odd was that when i went to school in marion high school over in arkansas, it was considered to be a good school for the area. i found that the level of education there wasn't anywhere NEAR the level of education i got in indiana at a poorly funded rural as shit school. we had intense foreign language programs, really great art teachers, and a music program that was terrific. plus really well funded sports programs too. and this was from a school that was the only high school in one of the poorest counties in indiana. i consider myself lucky to have not had to go through all this craziness of the memphis educational system.

i think if i had a child now, i'd either bite it and spend an insane amount of money to put them through a private school or i'd home school them and just make sure i get them "socialized" by putting them in little league or something like that to where they can meet kids their age.
Posted: May 13, 2006 2:09 am
 
Firey - I read about Portland schools awhile back in NYTimes, they were chalking up the school closings to a big influx of childless couples (ie: Pearl dist. residents) NYT is a bit biased about slapping 'it' towns around to keep the faithful NY lifers feeling good about themselves. NYT also did two articles about Memphis, one about the destruction of the Mall of Memphis and the second about the glut of cheep ass apartments during the homeownership boom. Although alot more critical than CA would go, good perspectives nonetheless, yet I digress.

Portland is a fine town, and has some of the friendliest public transit workers on earth, but my NW prospects are more in the South Sound area.
Posted: May 13, 2006 2:38 am | Edited by: fierydrunk
 
I would say that is a fine move--better jobs up there and a beautiful place to raise a kid. Portland is just packed to the gills right now--it has a pretty sheen but there is not a lot going on underneath to prop it all up. The housing prices are ludicrous for the types and availability of jobs here. Don't get me wrong, I will miss a lot about this place when I am dealing with no curbside recycling and loads of other behind the times bullshit in Florida, but um, for what we wanna do with our lives/careers etc, there are already tons of other people ahead of you in line. Not a fun feeling.
Posted: May 14, 2006 6:09 am | Edited by: Jack Stands
 
FYI,
Hidden cost of "better public schools"? Perscription AD/HD drugs. Fuck my kid's teacher. A lot. Old bitty can't handle an "excitable child".
Reports to every admin in the school that said child is AD/HD.
Puts it down i his "permanent record".
Brings in State "analyst".
Not doctor, analyst.
Bitch agrees this kindergartener don't want to sit down all the time.
Meds.
Two cards: Medical, Perscription.
Perscription, not set up.
Employer changes "provider" like a flyer on a telephone pole.
Cost to me?
138.
Really.
I'll fight the system.
I'll recoup my deductable.
Don't you even worry about that.
Worry about old bitty pushing meds at a Top 10 school.
To the youngest.
Fuck her.
Posted: May 14, 2006 6:37 am
 
BULLSHIT!
I say. Let that child grow, develop, learn, interact, enjoy new things.
Learn about them. Teach what they are thirsty for.
And when the mundane tasks come, let them understand that "such is life, sometimes".
But when that boy is bad, instill the fear of the principal's office.
Make them scared of the rumors of "the electric paddle".
I had the fear as a kid.
No one wanted to go to the principal's office at that age.
Much less, come home and say "I had to go to the principal's office".
He definitely fears the "coming home with a bad report" part.
But while he's there, "it ain't no big thing", I'm guessing.
I could tell you about taking away the video game, the tv, the standing against the wall with the nose planted firmly and the arms to the sides, and the spanking in extreme cases.
And I hate all of it.
But at school, there's no fear.
Teachers, please. Lay down the law when we're not there.
You might have your hands bound by some crazy beauraracy.
You might be scared of some insane reprecussion.
I understand.
But if all you can do is help the pharmaceutical industry, while being afraid to make some kid run laps at recess for his transgressions, it's time to re-evaluate your career. Maybe you're better off being one of those State analysts, if you're such an expert.
You fucking lifer. You old bitty. Retirement's only a couple o' years away.
Play it safe. You're getting what you deserve in the end, right?
New blood in the system would mean a transfusion.
And you only need a transfusion when you're sick, right?
No, you're on top of your game.
The golden sunset.
And kids who can't sit down can't be bothered with.
There must be something wrong with them, right?
Fuck you, old bitty.
Posted: May 14, 2006 3:52 pm | Edited by: fierydrunk
 
Yeah, this is getting ridiculous. Now, I have seen those meds help some kids to a point, but the ones I worked with who were suposedly ADHD benefited from some attention, consistency and structure more than a bunch of meds to dope them up. In fact, the ADHD kids were HATING the meds. They hated the way it made them feel. The older ones actually saw the benefit (even though they still hated the way they felt), because I think by the time you are in HS if you are still bouncing off the walls like a 5 year old, you got ADHD and you need meds.

But these little ones? NO. If I had grown up 20 years later, I would have easily been one of those. Instead, Lausanne kicked me out cos my psychologist dad refused to send me to a psychotherapist selected by the school because of my hyper behavior. I was fine once I landed in parochial school for a year!!!!
Posted: May 14, 2006 5:40 pm
 
spend an insane amount of money to put them through a private school

how much do memphis private schools cost now?
Posted: May 14, 2006 5:45 pm
 
I know Lausanne was $4500 in the 70s so I am imagining it and MUS are at least $13-$15K now. At least.
Posted: May 14, 2006 5:47 pm
 
Uh-huh

MUS 2006-2007

Tuition, grades 7-12 $13,550.00

Optional:
*Tuition Refund Insurance $244.00
Accident Insurance $60.00

Other Estimated Fees:
Textbooks $300-$500
Meal Plan $800/year
Athletic Team Fees $100-$200
7th Grade Owl Camp $250
Posted: May 14, 2006 5:52 pm
 
Lausanne is comparatively a steal. I'd send my kid there from preK-3rd. My experience was due to an awful headmaster who has been long gone/fired.

PreK $3,600–$7,500
JrK $6,300–$8,900
SrK $8,900
Gr. 1–4 $9,650
Gr. 5–8 $9,775
Gr. 9–12 $9,975
Required—Cafeteria fee (JrK–4th $575, 5th–12th $650), Class
fee (PreK–4th), Books (5th–12th), Gym Uniforms (5th–10th).
All 7th–12th grade students must finance or buy a laptop
computer through the school. There is a Tuition Refund Plan
premium of 3.5% for first year students unless the full tuition is
paid with the contract.
Optional—overnight class trips, private music lessons,
AfterCare, after school enrichment programs.
Posted: May 14, 2006 10:16 pm
 
MATAlac, thanks for reply re: what the heck you're going to do with the kid...

Jack, hang on and don't give in.
Posted: May 14, 2006 10:25 pm
 
putting kids on a meds is such a cop out. i think it should only be a last resort type of thing only if the child really really needs it. and 90 percent of them DON'T.
Posted: May 15, 2006 1:29 am | Edited by: Jack Stands
 
Thanks, Alisa. Sorry folks about the late night rant. Probably more personal info than needs be exposed on the interweb.
However. This does actually have some bearing on the Optional school discussion. The tired "old bitty" with a couple of years left until retirement has been dangling the Optional School carrot in our faces for a while. Yes, you have to test for it. But also, conduct is a part of the consideration for acceptance. Therefore the drugs were part of her arsenal in some of the last parent/teacher conferences. i.e. "well you know your child is very gifted and does well academically. He's a good candidate for the optional program. However, I'm concerned his conduct may be a factor. Have you looked into the possibility your child may have AD/HD?"
Posted: May 15, 2006 1:39 am
 
It is extremely unprofessional (not to mention, unbelievably rude) for her to insinuate to you that your child's conduct is the result of ADHD. There are so many other things that should be (and would be) examined first and from what you have said, she is older and maybe burnt out on her job.

What is she doing trying to diagnose your child? That jump she made from "Hmmm obviously gifted, conduct problematic, ADHD?" is troublesome and she needs to be reported if there is someone to report her to.
Posted: May 15, 2006 1:51 am
 
Perhaps "I'd rather have a trained medical professional doing any medical diagnosing..." would shut her up.
I have never heard of a child testing in, and not being allowed in because of their KKs teachers "reference" about their behaviour. I've only heard of the behaviour issue being visited AFTER they test in, and only then if they're doing something like pissing on the floor or being overtly violent or something.
Have you talked to the principal about it? I wonder what she would say if she knew the teacher virtually threatened you with no Optional if the boy wouldn't take the meds.
Plus, Jack, I never would have thought that this would be a real issue with teachers, but I've come across two or three during the kids' schooling that DIDN'T LIKE BOYS. I'm not kidding.
Posted: May 15, 2006 3:23 pm
 
Jack I wonder if she has ever thought that maybe your kid is not challeneged enough and that is the cause of his behavior in school. When I was in kindergarden the teacher told my mom she should have me evaluated because she thought I might have mental problems, my mom whipped my out of private schools and put me in the optional program in public school and I excelled.

The problem was that I would finish my work before all of the other kids, and what does a six year old do when they have nothing to do, they "get into trouble".

I am not sure that I would send my kids to school based on friends or diversity, it should be about what is going to get them into the best college (this is the future, not a popularity contest). And what is diverse, more black kids? When I was at White Station there were kids from all kinds of backgrounds: black, white, asian, indian, european (I don't remeber any indian or asian kids being in the standard classes).
Posted: May 15, 2006 4:10 pm
 
The problem was that I would finish my work before all of the other kids, and what does a six year old do when they have nothing to do, they "get into trouble".

This was my problem. Lausanne had us on work contracts and once the work was done and the teacher signed off on it (yes, they didn't teach us, we taught ourselves while they read Good Housekeeping), we could run the grounds. And I did. Once I got into a strict school, I was a perfect child...sortof.
Posted: Jun 9, 2006 4:29 am
 
alright. so they picked me for an interview. they sent me the email today telling me that, so i go in for the interview next saturday. wish me luck!
Posted: Jun 9, 2006 4:40 am
 
Good luck!!!!
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