Friday, October 29, 2010
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
I have uploaded the CAPT Score Presentation Slides that were used at the BOE meeting on Tuesday night. The last of the video from the meeting will be available later today.
Last night's BOE meeting was long so there is a lot of video. I thought I would start off with the CAPT presentation since that seems to be of interest to the most people. It appears the CAPT presenter saw my rant on the CMT presentation. A much clearer presentation which did not totally ignore the problem for shooting at the lowest level needed for AYP. The CAPT scores were atrocious and the high school failed to make AYP. I will have more to say about this later but for now, enjoy the presentation.
Personnel Subcommittee Meeting:
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Friday, October 15, 2010
Thursday, October 14, 2010
I would like to welcome Sharon Bass and the East Haven Patch to the local scene. If you get a chance go check out her site. There is lots of good stories about our community.
Marilyn Vitale and I are taping the next edition of the EH News tonight at ETV studios. We have the Connecticut House candidates for the 99th District coming in for our last interviews with them before the election. That show should be online this weekend sometime.
Hugh Keefe is going to be defending the BOE members in the lawsuit filed by Maisano and Depalma. I'll keep an eye on the bills as this thing escalates out of control.
The Trolley Museum is running a the haunted trolley during the Halloween season. Check their website for details.
The East Haven Arts Council will be having a movie on the Town Green next Saturday, October 23rd with festivities starting at 4PM. Check their website for details.
Some of you have asked for shorter clips of the more important parts of the meetings to be posted online. Kind of like meeting highlights for those without the time or desire to hear our town leaders drone on for hours and hours. So here is the first highlight clip from the other night's BOE meeting. The one thing that seemed to be the most interest to everyone was the selection of attorneys for the Maisano-Depalma lawsuit. Here is the clip of that:
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
For right now, here is the video of the meeting in 2 parts. The first part is everything leading up to the executive session, including the discussion of the conflict question. The second part is everything that happens after the executive session. On a technical note, I've been trying to tweak the quality of the video lately. The first part of the meeting is in high def. Possibly the best HD video I've created using some new software. The downside is the video file is larger than normal so it may be slow to load. Compare that to part 2 which is in standard definition and you can see the difference easily.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
The BOE meets on Tuesday at the H.S. at 7PM. There will be a presentation of the CAPT scores for the test that was administered in the spring. Should be an interesting presentation which, I am hoping, has far less spin on the results than the CMT presentation.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
The big item during the public hearing part of the meeting was an ordinance to make it more fair for towing companies to get work from the town. Fairness stood no chance in East Haven and the ordinance was tabled so that the politically connected can continue to monopolize the town's towing business.
Enjoy the video....
Regular Meeting Part 1:
Regular Meeting Part 2:
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Proficient (bare minimum under the NCLB)
With the global competition facing our students from countries such as India and China focusing on the minimum seems kind of like educational malpractice. When I started doing some research after the presentation I decided to look at how we are doing at the only level that means anything for our students trying to find jobs in the 21st century: the advanced level. The statistics at the advanced level were even worse than I had imagined.
I looked at the reading, writing and math scores for grades 4, 6 and 8 and compared them to other school districts in our District Reference Group ("DRG"). The state uses several factors to group like school districts together. Within a DRG the districts have similar socioeconomic backgrounds and needs. The DRGs are lettered from "A" (the best) to "I" (the worst). East Haven is in DRG G which is not exactly an academic powerhouse. There are 15 districts in our DRG. Other districts in our DRG include towns such as Bloomfield, Groton, Middletown, and Vernon.
Here is where we stand within our DRG:
Reading - 14th out of 15
Writing - 14th out of 15
Math - 12th out of 15
Reading - 13th out of 15
Writing - 13th out of 15
Math - 13th out of 15
Reading - 11th out of 15
Writing - 15th out of 15
Math - 12th out of 15
You could look at these scores and wonder how the absolute failure of the BOE, the Superintendent and the Administrators could be possibly be worse. I wondered the same thing. The thought crossed my mind that somehow the other members of DRG G were much better than they should be based on the factors that put them into our DRG. So I decided to look at the surrounding districts of New Haven, Branford, North Haven and North Branford to see how we compared to them. Two things surprised me. First, in spite of the reputation North Branford isn't exactly burning down the educational barn, so to speak. They have higher scores at the advanced level than East Haven but not by much. Second, I was amazed at how we stacked up against New Haven. They are in DRG I, along with the other big cities due to the poor demographics. In previous years I had looked at New Haven and they always ranked substantially worse than East Haven. Now, however, I was amazed that their scores were quite close at the advanced level. In the case of 4th grade writing scores New Haven actually scored higher than East Haven. You read that correctly. We have 7.8% at the advanced level in 4th grade writing. New Haven has 8.1%.
At some point those responsible for the pile of drek that is our CMT scores need to be held accountable. The current BOE does not seem have the intestinal fortitude or knowledge to hold anyone accountable. I was watching the BOE members during the presentation last week and their heads were bouncing in agreement with what was being presented. Admittedly, what was being presented sounded good. However, you can make it sound good when you set the bar low enough and then cherry pick the areas where the students performed best.
The BOE spends $43 million of our money. They can get these scores with a whole lot less money. If they aren't going to hold people accountable for this disaster then next year the Town Council should lower our taxes 17% and reduce the amount given to the BOE.