What are your thoughts on the REAL questions?

Here’s the biggest problem for me personally in this campaign: how much time to spend on the real concerns, and how much time to spend countering distractions and disinformation?

I think it’s necessary to do both, but a couple of people have suggested to me, in different ways, that I’m spending too much time on the latter. Maybe they’re right.

Kristy Sherlund served on school board for eight years. She thinks we candidates are wasting time arguing about things that are not up to school boards to decide. She says, “Your hands are tied at so many levels because of state and local governance and you are there to focus on the management of the money and the superintendent. We have real issues facing todays children.”

I agree with Kristy. So I am grateful for a list of questions that she offers as topics candidates should discuss.

I don’t know enough about some of these questions yet, but I’m going to try to respond to them over coming days and weeks. I’ll take them up in the order in which I come up with information and thoughts.

If you are a Caledonia educator or parent and you are willing to share your perspective on any of these questions, or on other similarly important questions, please write to me through my blog portal, or by email to e4cs22@gmail.com. When you write, let me know whether or not I should use your name if I quote you when I post on the question in hand.

Here are Kristy’s questions:

1. Special education: Cost is 4x that of a regular education, and if evaluated by parents, my bet is that most Caledonia parents would say they are not satisfied.

[My response to this question is now posted as The real questions: special education]

2.  Caledonia’s secondary advisory staff does not push our high achievers to their limits. How many kids from Cal have attended Ivy Leagues?  Michigan? 

3. College costs: What are we doing to help children and their parents prepare for the future? AP classes, scholarships, etc.!

4. K–5: The best early education comes from smaller class sizes. How do we get there?

5.  Academic rigor: Do we have it?  Are we expected the most of our kids?  How can we prove we are?

6.  School to work: What programs do we offer for MAINSTREAM kids that can’t afford college to go direct into the workforce?  How are we working with local companies?

7.  Diversity: How are we preparing our children for a ever shrinking world where their knowledge of global issues and empathy will be critical for their professional success?

8.  Mental health: How are we really taking stock in the use of drugs and alcohol in our district?  What are the root causes?  What can we do to reduce the complacency of all on this issue?

9.  Curriculum: Can our kids read?  Even more important. Do they like to? 

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