A Golden Chalk Award goes out to the Field Museum of Chicago. The museum will be hosting the U.S. premier of “The Greeks – Agamemnon to Alexander the Great.” It is a display of over 500 artifacts arranged to tell the story of 5,000 years of ancient Greek history. It’s the biggest collection of Grecian antiquities to show in the U.S. in recent times. The artifacts come from 21 Greek museums.
Imagine seeing busts of Homer, Alexander the Great, Plato, Aristotle and Demosthenes. The display shows the golden funeral mask of Agamemnon. This is a must see for anyone interested in ancient history.
The news reports from Chicago have been very depressing lately. I thought it would be nice to write about an amazing cultural success for once.
One of my prestigious Golden Chalk Awards goes out to NOBLE, the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives. This group has been going to schools and teaching students about police work, citizens’ civil rights and how to interact safely with police.
I’ve seen my share of ridiculous assemblies and worthless student workshops. This seems like a worthwhile assembly topic and I hope all schools devote a little time to this, especially the inner city schools.
The following was taken from a guest column in my local paper. “In an article written by Brian Mackey of Illinois Public Radio, we find out that on Sept. 18, 2012, candidate Bruce Rauner presented a lecture at a conference of the George W. Bush Institute on a plan that he had to use social services as a political wedge to discredit public unions and the Democratic Party. (There is an audio portion of the lecture with Rauner presenting his devious plan.)
So what we are seeing in our community, the defunding and/or underfunding of our social services is the implementation of the governor’s pre-meditated plan to create crisis in communities and blame public unions and the Democratic Party. He has, as Mackey writes, conscripted the disabled, the elderly, the disadvantaged, the mentally ill and the addicted into his plan to aid his reform agenda for business. What a hero.
So we have a governor who came to the office never intending to really uphold the state’s Constitution. He already had in mind how he would exploit the health and welfare of one group of citizens in order to bring greater profits and opportunity to another group of citizens. Obviously more important citizens in the governor’s mind.”
According to a Chicago Tribune article, Chicago public schools spend tens of millions of dollars each year to pay for its own security guards and in the past has also paid the city of Chicago for police in the schools. Thank you to mayor Emanuel for agreeing to now pay for the police presence. Each high school has at least two police officers in the school in addition to the many security guards employed by the school district. There are also more policemen stationed outside of schools at the beginning and end of the school day.
According to the Chicago Tribune article, Los Angeles has its own department of 350 sworn officers at an estimated yearly cost of $59 million. The New York Police Department School Safety Division receives $228 million annually from New York City’s education department.
This heavy police and security presence has almost nothing to do with protecting the schools from the type of terrorists we see on the news. No, these security personnel are in the schools just to protect the teachers and students from other students. Their presence is also necessary to prevent lawsuits arising from inadequate protection.
Imagine you are a young naïve recent college graduate going in for an interview about an inner city school job opening. You see policemen outside the school as you drive up. (You’re at least smart enough not to take public transportation and walk in the neighborhood). Once in the school, you see two more policemen and several security personnel as you tour the building. What would you be thinking ?
To all the wealthy, teacher bashing, union smashing critics who always seem to know what’s wrong with our inner city schools and exactly how to fix them, I say, switch careers and join us as a teacher in an inner city school. It can be a very rewarding career. The salary isn’t much. but the job does not lack for excitement. Just ignore the heavy security and police presence, you’ll be fine.
I see many reports on the news regarding the movement to mandate seat belts on school buses. Parents are clamoring for more safety on the buses.
Here’s a “heads up” for parents. Most school districts don’t have the money to put seatbelts on school buses. They don’t have the money for improvements in many areas of what could be viewed as safety enhancements for students.
Most schools are never going to be adequately funded until we stop this antiquated system of using property taxes as the main way to fund schools. There has to be a better way.
If you want the best for your kids in all matters that concern your local school, then encourage your legislators to come up with a different way of funding schools. Why can’t we have free education like in the European countries ? No, forget that, we don’t want that socialist stuff over here in America. (Sorry, Bernie).
Here’s a plan. Have your children become “dual citizens”. Find a way for them to become French citizens. THEY WOULDN’T EVEN HAVE TO MOVE TO FRANCE FOR THEIR FREE EDUCATION. The French have schools right here in America for any French citizens living here. They of course can attend free, and you should see how wonderful those schools are.
I know what you’re thinking, you’re too patriotic to have your kids be dual citizens. Fine, then let your kids ride on buses with no seatbelts and attend schools that will never be ideal because they will always be chronically underfunded.
I was visiting my son at his military base this summer and was talking to a staff sergeant who was about to retire. I asked him how many years he had in the army. He said when he retired he would have exactly 29 years and 364 days. I wondered about the odd number and he explained. He said that if he had the full 30 years the army would have to pay him a much larger pension than if they retired him just short of that number. So they made him retire at 29 years and 364 days. From what I have learned, apparently this is a common practice.
If this is all true, it’s pretty pathetic. So much for honoring our troops to the fullest. I urge you to find out if this is indeed a common practice and to write your congressman about this.
Happy Veterans Day.
Chicago Public Schools said it will put 10 of the privately run charter schools on an academic warning list that could lead to them being shut down if they don’t improve under the district’s rating system.
Wow ! Talk about incompetence ! You are a charter school. You have strict discipline, students in uniforms, students that want to be there, parents who care, and you still can’t make the grade ? Pathetic!