Narrow Search

Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion

Re: “Fiamme Pizza Napoletana Restaurant Now Open

Just got lunch from Fiamme, a margherita pizza and a caesar salad. Both very good. They have a great wood fired oven in the front of the restaurant. Terrific, chewy crust. (I don't work for the Trump administration, so I can say all this, right?)

7 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by David Safier on 02/13/2017 at 4:12 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

Frances, faith in God is not a private interest. The only real gain occurs after death. many people have decided to smear faith with some sort of broad religious brush to cover up for some other fear or inadequacy.

I believe the original intent mirrored the USC that the government shall not establish a religion. I also believe if the federal government chooses to solve education problems by allowing it, the states may follow.

Both sides use the USC as a security blanket, and even at that neither finds much security. But continuing to try to solve education issues by doing the same thing we have been doing will provide the same results we have been getting.

And that is the definition of insanity.

20 likes, 14 dislikes
Posted by Rat T on 02/13/2017 at 1:25 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

So do you, Frances. (Genuflect to the Constitution when it supports your discriminatory anti-Catholic school funding policy agenda, while conveniently ignoring other law-based and constitution-based arguments that don't conform to the ideological points you want to push.)

I'm asking you again: what's your message to the parents of students enrolled in the recently de-magnetized TUSD schools:
"This form of mis-managed, insufficiently professionalized 'education' is good enough for you because the money that flows through this district, unlike the money that flows through charters and voucher-supported private schools, conforms to the Arizona Constitution, which happens to coincide with my ideological priorities on this particular point, and, not coincidentally, benefits the political party / machine with which I affiliate?"

The kind of differential acces to quality educational opportunities that happens in mismanaged districts like TUSD is an ongoing shame and injustice. Their chronic inability or unwillingness to address inequities in the quality of services offered from one site to the next is the reason a 40 year old desegregation order is still unresolved. I would not wish on my worst enemy the misfortune of having to enroll a child in ANY of this district's schools -- even the supposedly "high functioning" ones -- especially not while the district continues to suffer under its current incompetent and venal administrative management. And that statement is based on direct and extensive experience as a parent and volunteer and direct and extensive experience as a participant in and observer of governance meetings. Unlike other arguments made in this stream, what I have written here is not based on utopian fantasy about what our local public schools SHOULD BE in theory but ARE NOT in practice.

20 likes, 15 dislikes
Posted by Yet again, contra "Frances Perkins" on 02/13/2017 at 12:24 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

Article 2, Section 12. Arizona State Constitution. NO PUBLIC MONEY SHALL BE APPROPRIATED OR APPLIED TO ANY RELIGIOUS WORSHIP, EXERCISE, OR INSTRUCTION, OR TO THE SUPPORT OF ANY RELIGIOUS ESTABLISHMENT. Of course conservatives genuflect to the Constitution when convenient and ignore it when their private interests benefit.

21 likes, 22 dislikes
Posted by Frances Perkins on 02/13/2017 at 11:33 AM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

What again, why do you support pedophiles?

16 likes, 23 dislikes
Posted by Vietnam vet on 02/13/2017 at 10:53 AM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

At the national and state level, politicians supporting choice policies have won.

We will not be returning to a state of affairs where large, monolithic, centrally administered "public school districts" -- many of these districts, in poor urban areas, in the grips of corrupt political machines -- once again enjoy an inappropriate monopoly on the use of public funds to educate American citizens. This changed circumstance in the field of education is entirely appropriate, given our political, cultural, and demographic situation as a nation: we live in a pluralist society that guarantees freedom of religion, and we've long since lost our faith that there is any such a thing as a value-neutral perspective that can be reliably conveyed in impersonal, centralized, state-controlled educational institutions. You can read any number of political scientists, cultural anthropologists, and literary critics to bring yourself up to date on this topic, if you higher education came in the days before Post-Modernist epistemologies resoundingly defeated the Modernist project: James C. Scott. Clifford Geertz. Marshall Sahlins. Stanley Fish.

Memo to the "anti-privatizers": if your involvement in policy debates on these issues is actually motivated by a concern for student well-being, it's time to shift your policy advocacy emphasis to putting legislation in place that supports fiscal transparency for all institutions using public funds and a suitably flexible (not Common Core-style) agreement about what constitutes academic competence in each of the disciplines.

Some seem to believe that "religious" schools don't accept appropriate academic standards in the sciences, but this is not uniformly true. Some do, some don't. Salpointe recently installed a state-of-the-art STEM center and it teaches the same AP science curricula other college preparatory high schools do. As for the "hot button" politicized science issues: recently a Carmelite scientist from South America whose research on climate change contributed to the formulation of the pope's encyclical on the environment, Laudator Si, gave a talk at Salpointe. He was not a climate change denier.

Some seem to believe that all "religious" schools limit women's opportunities and perpetuate outmoded gender stereotypes. Once again: some do, some don't. Salpointe's first Rhodes Scholar was a Hispanic young woman, a varsity athlete, and a top student.

If there are young people right now in Tucson who could benefit from the opportunities Salpointe and other schools like it can provide, their parents' income levels should not be an obstacle. We are fortunate that our public policy in this country is starting, in a very small and limited way, to rectify some of the gross injustices we have tolerated relating to income-discriminatory access to educational opportunity.

22 likes, 15 dislikes
Posted by Time to change the policy agenda, "anti-privatizers." on 02/13/2017 at 10:07 AM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

U r absolutely correct! Thank u for sharing, David. A problem I have noticed about Charter schools in Tucson, is that they seem to attract problem children w/problem parents. The kids learn little, yet pass with flying colors, n their parents are delighted. The few good kids who end up in charter schools, learn all the problem kids' bad habits, which are even worse than the habits they would pick up at public school!

14 likes, 26 dislikes
Posted by wise grandma on 02/13/2017 at 6:44 AM

Re: “Is The Ku Klux Klan Making a Come Back... in Tucson?

Don't forget the misspelling of the word wear in regards to the ware he used. Lol, I love Idiots.

Posted by Sosh D'bonair on 02/13/2017 at 5:32 AM

Re: “So, There's an Underwear Party Coming to Club Congress

I think this totally started when I picked up my friend from a concert at the rialto... in my underwear. Lol Amazing

Posted by Moikey on 02/12/2017 at 10:25 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

Frances Perkins - "They didn't have millions from DeVos to lobby for handing over taxpayer money to the schools."

How many millions do the teachers' unions lobby to take choice away from parents and imprison our children in public education?

26 likes, 23 dislikes
Posted by What, Again on 02/12/2017 at 3:33 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

Immigration policy, like education policy, needs to be formulated on the basis of relevant facts and data. One relevant piece of data when it comes to immigration is whether we have sufficient resources to provide the services immigrants need to make a successful transition into citizenship and employment here. (Having volunteered with programs in support of both East Asian immigrants and African immigrants in the past, I know that quite a bit of support is needed as people learn the language and how American systems function).

What I have trouble with is trying to shut down discussion of a policy issue simply on the basis of "IT'S UNCONSTITUTIONAL !!!" As has been pointed out in these comment streams before, slavery was constitutional before the 13th amendment. Barring women from voting was constitutional before the 19th amendment.

When it comes to issues like vouchers and immigration, I'd like to hear arguments for whether it's sustainable or unsustainable, humane or inhumane, just or unjust, a positive or negative addition to our current economic and educational situation in Southern Arizona. Where the issues currently stand in terms of the Constitution and Supreme Court rulings is one thing to take into account, but discussion doesn't end there.

23 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Parallels on 02/12/2017 at 3:32 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

"It's uncanny how much these anti-Catholic-school people sound like the rabid anti-immigration people:"

They have absolutely nothing to do with each other. Personally I don't know of or heard anyone that are any anti-immigration people. Could you be referring to illegal aliens that violate the laws of our country to take advantage of the citizens and legal residents of America? Steal seats in our strained public education system at the cost of taxpayers and detriment to their children?

5 likes, 23 dislikes
Posted by What, Again on 02/12/2017 at 2:31 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

Frances Perkins - so schools that teach liberalism, that teach man made global warming could not receive taxpayer funding?

5 likes, 30 dislikes
Posted by What, Again on 02/12/2017 at 2:05 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

It's uncanny how much these anti-Catholic-school people sound like the rabid anti-immigration people:

"It's illegal !! It's unconstitutional !!! Ban the use of public funds in Catholic schools !!! Deport them all !!!"

In both cases what comes across is the irrational, abusive use of somewhat arbitrary MAN-MADE RULES to cut off access to a basic human need: in one case, a good education; in another case, a living wage for labor.

RE the school voucher case: Kids do better when their parents are happy with the school in which they're enrolled and fully supportive of its values. If people want their tax dollars applied in a Catholic school, why not, as long as it's academically sound? If you want to be scrupulous about it, you could pro-rate the public funds and apply them to all the academic subjects taught in public schools but not to the one hour a day or less when religion class is taught.

Why not? What exactly is wrong with it? And please give a real reason, related to how it does or does not serve the needs of the families in students in question, not just the standard-issue hysteria, which makes it sound a lot like "constitutionalism" is serving as a cloak for prejudice and bigotry.

27 likes, 23 dislikes
Posted by Parallels: anti-voucher & anti-undocumented on 02/12/2017 at 1:36 PM

Re: “Ask a Mexican!


7 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Blanco con ojos abiertos on 02/12/2017 at 1:11 PM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

You forgot this part, Frances:

"In Southern Arizona, where:
--a school district serving tens of thousands of students is chronically malfeasant and / or insufficiently transparent in matters relating to how it applies funds
--more than 40 years into an ongoing desegregation order the schools have still not achieved UNITARY STATUS (uniformly good services offered to all populations throughout the district)
--the Department of Education is chronically negligent in enforcing the proper use of bidding and hiring practices and financial reporting that should be utilized in any public institution
--qualified teachers are fleeing this district in droves and too many classrooms are staffed with underqualified long-term subs who cannot meet students' instructional needs you support taxpayer money being used to provide children with sound academic instruction in alternative settings, including the network of schools run by the Roman Catholic Church.

That's the REAL context here. You can't suppress the knowledge of the first part and frame the question to get the answer you want.

FYI, I'm no fan of the way state level policy has been constructed in Arizona. I agree with the ADE official who was recently quoted in these streams thus: "Among the key lessons taken from Arizona's experience with many various forms of school choice is that in nearly every instance, the haste to enact a program was not accompanied by a prudent investment in the necessary infrastructure to oversee it." All schools receiving public funds need to be properly overseen and required to be financially transparent, and the current framing of voucher and charter legislation does not accomplish this.

But the "best of all possible worlds" is distinctly not what we're living in here, and the real "bottom line" -- contra what you wrote above -- is that STUDENTS NEED A SOUND EDUCATION, AND THEIR FUTURES WILL BE MARRED IF THEY DON'T RECEIVE ONE. It appears that with the current political lay-of-the-land in Arizona, we can't have sane education policy. We can only have damage control. And to remove vouchers now -- imperfect as their current framing may be -- would be like kicking the crutch out from under a crippled patient who can barely walk with the crutch. Our students need the successful delivery of academic content. When the largest public school district, serving almost 50,000 students in this region -- 1 of every 3 students in public schools in Pima County -- is having such grave problems with achieving the successful delivery of academic content, we're simply not in a position where we can afford to eliminate public subsidies for academically sound alternatives. And that is the case even when it's a Church you and others appear to hate that provides those alternatives.

27 likes, 22 dislikes
Posted by Wrong again, "Frances Perkins." on 02/12/2017 at 12:48 PM

Re: “Editor's Note

You think what I wrote this week annoys you? Be sure to tune in next week.

3 likes, 21 dislikes
Posted by CW13 on 02/12/2017 at 12:30 PM

Re: “Dust Devil

Hey Poetry Maven, Super Bowl is an insightful piece, not great but makes you think. Your response, Don't give up your day job?" Really. Is that's the best you got? Not many words on the reasons why you didn't like this persons poem. Can't find the words? There's some good stuff in there. Come on now. No wonder people don't want to submit things and get dismissed like you did. I've heard about you before and this is the way you are not being very professional at all. Maybe you'll like this one:
" Poetry Maven sits in her Haven and eats her curses and blames those with something to say. When along comes a spider and sits down beside her and says," what an awful critique you made today." You can do better, for all of us, please try again.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by R. Frost on 02/12/2017 at 10:33 AM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

The bottom line is taxpayer money to private religious schools are prohibited by the State constitution. The legislature is essentially laundering money to get around the prohibition. If all you advocates of money laundering had the courage, put it crystal clear in the ballot,"Should public taxpayer money be used to support private religious schools," and it's corollary "Will you pay a dedicated tax to do this?" Somehow I believe you want to avoid the likely answers.

24 likes, 30 dislikes
Posted by Frances Perkins on 02/12/2017 at 10:03 AM

Re: “Countries That Embraced Vouchers Made the Wrong School Choice

The last time I read to a TUSD Kindergarten class the teacher told me the reason the children were so poorly behaved was because they were children of alcoholic parents. Took my child and left. I graduated TUSD but am ashamed of the level to which they have sunk.

12 likes, 29 dislikes
Posted by Rat T on 02/12/2017 at 6:50 AM

© 2017 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation