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Thread: Our School "Reconfiguration"

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by TracyScheidemantel View Post
    Yes, that they are completely unable to even listen to another perspective! Thankfully I wasn't speaking to them!

    I also found it interesting (frankly, sad) that all of these very concerned parents quickly left after "venting" and did not stay to hear about the position the committee will take on Question 1- repeal of the state income tax! If those people truly believe our system is "degraded" now, you'd think that they would be interested in discussing the cuts that could face our community (not only schools, but SAFETY, etc.!!!) in January.
    Not to mention missing the info re: our High School, which will affect every one of the people in that room and even moreso, their children!

    There are many points of view and all should be encouraged and respected.
    Nobody in that room cared about your perspective, Tracy. You were perceived by all as gloating, arrogant, and obnoxious. That would have been a great opportunity to stay quiet and listen to people whose community you so happily helped to rip apart. Instead, you took the opportunity to blather on in a room full of people (SC and administration excluded, along with the four or five of you who always sit up front and gossip with each other about everyone else in the room) who would be happy to never hear from you again. Don't bother to post about how angry I am, how rude my comments are, etc. I stand behind it all no matter what your response, if any.

    As to staying to listen to the rest, I can only speak for myself but listening to you and XXXX talk is what drove me out of the room. I could not listen to even one more word and have no respect for your point of view as it is both one-sided and totally devoid of sympathy. The other subjects probably would have been interesting. Even though I didn't stay, let me guess how it went -- SC against the income tax repeal, if it passes we will have to cut, cut, cut, and the new HS is critical to our kids and we're doing the greatest job in the history of the modern world in working with the State. I think I must be close...

    I hope I have been as perfectly clear as possible.
    Last edited by Kim Reichelt; 09-17-2008 at 08:56 AM. Reason: removal of individual's name (rather than removing entire post)

  2. #62
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    Tracy,

    Iím not sure if you appreciate the depth of the disillusionment that people have in this school committee. These arenít just words. People mean it. When people say theyíve lost confidence in the committee, that the committee has lost its integrity, itís for a reason. People arenít just being mean. This is really the sentiment.

    So, why then should we be interested in their thoughts on the income tax? We already donít trust their judgment. We already feel that they base their decisions more on politics than what is truly best for the town.

    The idea of ďcuts that could face our communityĒ comes from a source which has lost its credibility.

    As you probably know from my previous posts, I have voted for every override since moving to Wayland. However, after seeing the behavior of this committee up close and after coming to terms with what I perceive as screwed up priorities - closing a school before even considering charging for busing, not being able to afford foreign languages for elementary students because weíre more interested in being sure that our high schoolers have golf, Ultimate Frisbee and until recently, $9000 annually in ski lift tickets, and so on - I'm going to be a much harder sell.

    I donít agree with these priorities. I donít trust that they will do what I perceive to be the right thing.

    I want to know precisely how theyíre spending the $32 million dollars we gave them last year.

    To not even be aware of the annual $9000 golf expense, until it was presented to them earlier this year, suggests that we have a system out of control.

    The argument that thereís no more fat to cut is no longer convincing.

    Show me the money!
    John Flaherty

    Any views expressed are NOT mine alone.
    Wayland Transparency - Facts Without Spin
    http://www.waylandtransparency.com/

  3. #63
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    Default My response..whatever it may be worth

    Hi,
    I sat through the painful sc meeting last night, and what struck me as most bizarre is how the sc members, Jeff D. especially are willing the take the fall for Gary Burton. Is he untouchable? Are good administrators that hard to find? NOT ONE SC member contradicted or even questioned one comment Dr. Burton made. I have had issues with the curriculum, the behavior of the students, the quality of the teaching, etc., and I find the responses to be arrogant. Why attack the SC, especially one person, who happens to obviously have to intention of changing his mind. Why attack private citizens for having a difference of opinion?

    BTW I was so impressed with those who showed up to state their opinions. It takes alot of courage.

    Dr, Burton is the HIGHEST paid employee in Wayland. He has perks beyond the private sector, as does Brad Crozier, his assistant. THEY WORK FOR US. We pay their salaries.

    We need to work for a NEW ADMINISTRATION, at the top level. Does anyone agree? I'd like to know...
    (Dr. Burton, we are awaiting your response...)

  4. #64
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    I agree with you Mary.

    If Wayland Schools are going to stay innovative, we need an administration that is community responsive and excited to envision what is possible.
    We can and should be the best school system in the U.S.

  5. #65
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    Excellent post, Mary Ann.
    You make many good points.

    FYI, as of Feb 2008, here are some salaries:

    Gary $170,000
    Brad $127,000
    Joy $118,000

    You can find all of our Adminstrator's salaries here:

    Gary also gets a town-provided car. We probably pay for his gas, though I haven't confirmed that.

    Considering that Gary just received what can only be described as a rave review from the 5 members of the School Committee, his salary is likely to go up very soon, if it hasn't already.


    .
    John Flaherty

    Any views expressed are NOT mine alone.
    Wayland Transparency - Facts Without Spin
    http://www.waylandtransparency.com/

  6. #66
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    Default astonishing

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Baron View Post
    Nobody in that room cared about your perspective, Tracy. You were perceived by all as gloating, arrogant, and obnoxious. That would have been a great opportunity to stay quiet and listen to people whose community you so happily helped to rip apart. Instead, you took the opportunity to blather on in a room full of people (SC and administration excluded, along with the four or five of you who always sit up front and gossip with each other about everyone else in the room) who would be happy to never hear from you again. Don't bother to post about how angry I am, how rude my comments are, etc. I stand behind it all no matter what your response, if any.

    As to staying to listen to the rest, I can only speak for myself but listening to you and XXXX talk is what drove me out of the room. I could not listen to even one more word and have no respect for your point of view as it is both one-sided and totally devoid of sympathy.
    These comments by Jeff Baron are simply astonishing. Stupefyingly so. If, as is widely assumed, Jeff intends to make a run next year for elective office, what should we make of these shrill, disdainful, insulting and dismissive comments to a fellow townsperson (who did nothing more than voice her opinions)? If this extreme incivility is an indication of Jeff's way of dealing with views that he finds unwelcome, I would consider him temperamentally unfit for public office.
    Last edited by Kim Reichelt; 09-17-2008 at 08:57 AM. Reason: edits to remain consistent with edits to original post

  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Perlman View Post
    These comments by Jeff Baron are simply astonishing. Stupefyingly so. If, as is widely assumed, Jeff intends to make a run next year for elective office, what should we make of these shrill, disdainful, insulting and dismissive comments to a fellow townsperson (who did nothing more than voice her opinions)? If this extreme incivility is an indication of Jeff's way of dealing with views that he finds unwelcome, I would consider him temperamentally unfit for public office.
    Were you there, Steve?

  8. #68
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    Default an attempt at justification?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Baron View Post
    Were you there, Steve?

    Nope. Are you trying to suggest that your words don't speak for themselves, or are you just "blaming your victim" for "provoking" you (the classic "she made me do it" defense)?

  9. #69
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    Default Administrative salaries

    Quote Originally Posted by John Flaherty View Post
    Excellent post, Mary Ann.
    You make many good points.

    FYI, as of Feb 2008, here are some salaries:

    Gary $170,000
    Brad $127,000
    Joy $118,000

    You can find all of our Adminstrator's salaries here:
    John,

    How do these salaries compare with our "peer" communities?

  10. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Perlman View Post
    Nope. Are you trying to suggest that your words don't speak for themselves, or are you just "blaming your victim" for "provoking" you (the classic "she made me do it" defense)?
    I just wanted to know if you had heard the commentary that inspired my remarks. I was pretty sure the answer was no, but since we've not met, I wanted to confirm this was so.

    I've listened to Tracy spout off for months now, both in public forums like last night where she couches her comments in "civility" and in private when she spewed venom and lies about me, others who supported my campaign last spring, etc. I can specifically remember Tracy talking to a real estate agent in town on election day, right outside of Town Hall, telling her how stupid my ideas were, how I was just an "angry Loker parent", insulting me personally, etc. and subsequently getting her head ripped off in return by this lady. I still remember her (and others, to be fair) running after voters with their cheat sheets, informing voters that her "slate" of candidates was the only one that supported the override (an untruth given that I publicly stated that I would vote yes and, indeed, did). I still have the e-mails where Tracy, writing as a representative of SOS, asks people in town to put up signs for their candidates when in public, she and SOS denied endorsing any candidates at all. I still got 'em if you want to see 'em. Tracy does her truly dirty work in private and then denies it. By the way, she is not alone on this front. However, besides XXXX and XXXX, the others chose to follow the course of action I suggested above and let last night be.

    She had an opportunity last night to let sleeping dogs lie and let people who clearly have experienced a loss compounded by extreme mismanagement of the reconfiguration speak their peace and move on. Instead of doing that, she jumped up yet again and attempted to walk us all down the path of why we were all so wrong and misguided in regards to our reaction to the situation. Disgusted, nearly the entire audience of approximately 100 people (my best guess) walked out.

    You can call my remarks provoked (and I guess I would partially agree since the post was the 'last straw' in my attempts to keep my feelings quiet), I would simply call them the first time I decided to be truly honest and not politically correct. Maybe more honesty throughout this entire reconfiguration process and the mess that has resulted would help the situation.

    If you think that such honestly is "stupefying," then I respect your right to feel that way. In this situation, I chose a different path. That is not to say that I would do so again.
    Last edited by Kim Reichelt; 09-17-2008 at 08:58 AM. Reason: removal of individuals' names (rather than removing entire post)

  11. #71
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    Default bottom line

    That's no excuse, Jeff ..... but I suppose a lame expression of regret (your last sentence) is better than none.

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Perlman View Post
    That's no excuse, Jeff ..... but I suppose a lame expression of regret (your last sentence) is better than none.
    Again, to be clear, I don't regret what I said here. It may not be typical about how I react, but it is what I chose to do here. My point in the last sentence was more to emphasize that each situation requires its own analysis and response.

  13. #73
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    Default A few stayed

    I have to respond to the above comments about frustrated parents not staying for the rest of the SC meeting. I for one DID stay for the whole meeting, and I am one of those parents who do not agree with this reconfiguration. In fact, there were a few of us who stayed until 11:30 last night! I have also gone to every SC meeting since February, (except one in August). I do not remember seeing the above there. However I am willing to give the benefit of doubt that the poster was glued to her tv set watching on Waycam. However, I feel we did move foward into looking into full day K, something not on the agenda. We also discussed a possible timeline and funding possibilities to get the ball rolling. These are issues I brought up during the public comment session, AND again at the END of the meeting! Many people went last night because of the concern of the quality of Wayland's Elementary Schools. Believe what you must, but the quality of ed in grades K-5 has changed this year, and not for the better. No sugar coating is going to change that!

    Instead of criticizing people who clearly are still upset over losing their wonderful school, teachers, friends and traditions (I was a Loker parent for 8 years), maybe you folks should come up with ways to repair our community without the nasty karma!

    Can you see the injustice here? We lost a huge part of what makes our lives so special here for no good reason! I don't buy the 460k savings either. We should be discussing things like pairing up with a neighboring town to share resources. Like our Wayland/Weston crew team. Couldn't we have a Wayland/Weston golf team? Swim team? Ski team? Do we really need to pay for a ski team? What's more important, a ski team or full day K? The point is, we could have cut costs instead of moving a school/kids across town while the school they moved from sits half empty!
    There has been no clear communication of what to do next in the community.

    Yes, everyone does indeed have a voice. Use it to avoid problems,to solve problems, not to create problems. Loker parents just feel like our voices haven't been heard.

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Baron View Post
    Again, to be clear, I don't regret what I said here.
    In that case, I withdraw my last comment and reiterate what I said in my earlier posts before I charitably (but incorrectly) attributed to you the good judgment to express regret.

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Dieffenbach View Post
    I don't always get it right, but the charge last night, for instance, from XXXX of "condescension, smugness, and stony silence" rings false and certainly does nothing to elevate the conversation.
    No Jeff, it rings very, very true.
    Back in January, February and March, especially the condescension & smugness was extreme. If you don't believe me, I suggest you go back and look at the tapes. You might learn a thing or two about how you come across in public. It's all there.
    XXXX is not alone in this, I assure you.

    The stony silence, too was always just remarkable.
    A parent would make an impassioned plea or a good solid argument centered on the illogical choice of going to 2 1/2 schools and the even more illogical choice of going with HH, instead of Loker. And the response was a blank stare, punctuated with a cursory "Thank you."
    Nothing more. It was as if the parent hadn't really spoken - just move on to the next one, get this over with, and then we'll all vote exactly as we'd already decided we would.

    Again, go back and view the tapes.

    And Jeff, please don't come back with "we carefully considered...." blah, blah, blah.
    We don't believe you.
    Please don't continue to insult our intelligence with that. Just let us vent.
    Please just step a - w - a - y from the keyboard, and let us vent. Without your lame excuses and explanations. We don't want to hear them.
    We want YOU to hear US for a change. And you can't do that when your mind is racing to think about how you're going to respond.

    We're accustomed to you (as a committee) not responding when we want you to (see "stony silence" above), and then again, you (as an individual) responding with far-flung tangents and facts and charts and graphs that just confuse people, when we don't want you to.

    This is a time to shut up and listen.
    You owe us that, at least.

    And while you're at it, call in those cheerleaders. Their words are falling on deaf ears and are doing much more harm than good.

    .
    Last edited by Kim Reichelt; 09-17-2008 at 09:34 AM. Reason: removal of individual's name (rather than removing entire post)
    John Flaherty

    Any views expressed are NOT mine alone.
    Wayland Transparency - Facts Without Spin
    http://www.waylandtransparency.com/

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