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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: Editor's Note

Re: “Editor’s Note

Yes. You are picking cherries on a forklift. It may be true that urban districts suffer the consequences of too many low SES students, with all accompanying problems, but to lump all school districts across the country as a national disgrace is still unfair. Mismanagement comes with unwieldy size and unfortunate politics. Locally, you can look at Vail and Benson to find good management of resources, high teacher morale and solid performance as measured with both student success and test scores. Yet, the immediate referring to TUSD over and over as an immediately realistic paradigm for all may be a mantra here, but it is nevertheless still a shallow, knee jerk shibboleth. Vouchers will satisfy a tea-party level political position (and may even secretly line your own pockets with public money), but vouchers will not elevate the opportunities of most kids, they will not improve a huge majority of schools that will continue to (try to) function, and they will in no way ensure a prosperous future for the nation as a whole.

7 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by False Equivalence - Too Easy on 04/29/2017 at 6:30 AM

Re: “Editor’s Note

No, TUSD is not unique. There are other public school districts locally and nationally that have some of the same problems:

Sunnyside
http://tucson.com/news/opinion/column/gassen/sarah-garrecht-gassen-getting-paid-to-go-away-sunnyside-style/article_f935df59-f1ce-5d54-907a-c1668cc318d0.html

Newark
https://www.amazon.com/Prize-Whos-Charge-Americas-Schools/dp/0547840055/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1493405853&sr=8-2&keywords=the+prize

It remains to be seen how well Amphi will do with Jaeger at the helm, but many who know TUSD did not find the fact that he and another TUSD veteran (Abel Morado) were finalists for the same superintendent job at Amphi confidence inspiring:

http://tucson.com/news/local/education/two-tucson-unified-school-district-administrators-finalists-to-be-amphitheater/article_98318d99-f7ea-512f-86c5-04d3df85d86e.html
http://tucson.com/news/local/education/amphi-picks-todd-jaeger-tusd-s-general-counsel-to-lead/article_13cc5500-01c3-5a36-a67b-6426ae830f5f.html

There are some high functioning public school districts. Flowing Wells is often mentioned as one. No one doubts that public districts can, in some circumstances, provide good services. But not all of them do, and reforming troubled school districts is not something anyone locally or nationally has found a good way to do. Interventions of various kinds are attempted, and these institutions tend to limp along, many times getting worse rather than better under state control or mayoral oversight.

Applying tax dollars in support of students' enrollment in private schools would seem to many of us to be a much better investment in the future of the students in question and in the future of the communities where these students will work and live than applying those same tax dollars in more than one of our local public school districts. Why should the state subsidize the cost of students attending troubled, low functioning schools that don't meet their academic needs, but not high functioning schools where students' needs will be better met? That's a question voucher opponents should take time to answer, honestly considering the state of some of the schools in the public district system. I've yet to see a voucher opponent successfully doing it.

Care to give it a try, "False Equivalence, Again"?

2 likes, 8 dislikes
Posted by TUSD is not unique. Vouchers solve real problems. on 04/28/2017 at 12:01 PM

Re: “Editor's Note

I've enjoyed the Weekly during your tenure, Mari, and I'll be sorry to see you go. The YWCA is doing great things and I'm positive you'll be a strong force for good with that organization. Buenos suertes!

4 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Wizard on 04/28/2017 at 9:52 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

Best wishes - the YWCA is lucky to get you!

4 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by SonoranWinds on 04/28/2017 at 9:52 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

Alisha J:

Take your meds before making stupid online commentary.

11 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Rat T strikes again under yet another alias. on 04/28/2017 at 7:28 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

Maria,

Wow, we have known each other for almost 9 years this coming fall when you covered students leaders at the UoA that published in the fall of 2008. Indeed so much has happened in between from going forward as a country to the current situation we are in America....I am happy to see you taking a big step to fight for all of us so our government can work for us instead against us especially when it comes to immigration issues. We are a nation of immigrants and those of us that came as late immigrants do contribute for the success of this nation every single day although we are less appreciated these days:(

Thank You!

Zeke Gebrekidane

5 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Zeke Gebrekidane on 04/28/2017 at 7:19 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

I have learned much from knowing you and working with you and being your friend. I look forward to supporting you in your work for the YWCA, too! It's a cause after my own heart.

6 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Linda Ray 64 on 04/27/2017 at 9:19 PM

Re: “Editor’s Note

TUSD is really rather unique. It is not representative of any other school district in the state. It should not be held up to define and defeat the morale and the professionalism of hardworking people in all the other school districts in the state.

6 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by False Equivalence, Again on 04/27/2017 at 5:57 PM

Re: “Editor's Note

You did a tough job real well. You have been an expression of much of what's good about our community. Thanks

6 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Polis on 04/27/2017 at 5:22 PM

Re: “Editor's Note

How exciting! I'm very happy for you and wish all the best in your new endeavor.

6 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by Rita Connelly on 04/27/2017 at 2:30 PM

Re: “Editor's Note

Dang it. But I hope The Weekly gets a new weirdo at the helm. I really enjoyed how you cared for this silly little paper. The touch of a strong woman helped its presence in the community. Congrats on that!
And, congrats on your new adventure. I will catch up with at some point and we can lunch at Delectables.
Love ya. Anne

8 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by nutridawg on 04/27/2017 at 11:18 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

Thanks for all your hard work for an important community institution, Mari.

10 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Dylan Smith/TucsonSentinel.com on 04/27/2017 at 10:57 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

The YWCA is a great place for you to put your skills and your beliefs to work. The deep rooted tenets of Christianity that they stand for will be well served.

You can:
Advocate that they stop funding abortions with tax dollars.
Push to return prayer to public schools.
Promote tax reductions to empower the lower/middle class to a higher position of economic benefit.
Replace ACA with Affordable Health Care that allows women to become empowered and develop entrepreneurship skills.

The list is endless, best of luck to you on those efforts.

6 likes, 25 dislikes
Posted by Alisha J on 04/27/2017 at 10:37 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

It is difficult to leave a job you love, but your new job will be rewarding. Bringing change to Arizona is needed. And the grass roots is where it happens. Good luck and keep up the good work.
Here's to a brighter future.

13 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Jesse on 04/27/2017 at 8:03 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

Congratulations on your tenure at the Weekly and I can't wait to see what you do in your new position.

12 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Laura Fitzgerald on 04/27/2017 at 7:47 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

Congrats Mari! Thanks for everything you do. Break a leg at the YMCA!

10 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Tucson Sarah on 04/27/2017 at 5:48 AM

Re: “Editor's Note

Congratulations and good luck to you Mari!

11 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Sheila Wilensky on 04/27/2017 at 5:27 AM

Re: “Editor’s Note

I've learned a lot during the last few years from reading the comment streams on Safier's blog and on selected other pieces in the Weekly. I appreciate those who take the time to explain their reasoning and how they look at things, especially when I disagree with them politically. It helps me understand the diversity of opinions in local politics and what beliefs (and sometimes fears) certain policy preferences are based on.

The commenter above seems to comment frequently and has a very distinct style, but I've never been able to get a clear view of what he or she believes, beyond that the appropriate way to respond to anyone who questions any point of liberal orthodoxy is to use insults and assertions not backed up by any valid arguments or evidence. One trope is, while insulting another commenter, to assert that the commenter being insulted lacks love and / or compassion. The hypocrisy doesn't seem to register.

Interesting. Puts a new, ironic spin in the term "liberal," doesn't it? As does the Weekly's pervasive failure to delete comments that involve insults and name-calling, in direct violation of their own clearly stated "Comments Policy." Kind of like when TUSD reps say the district puts the wellbeing of the kids and teachers first. It doesn't take a whole lot of observation to recognize the betrayals and inconsistencies.

8 likes, 10 dislikes
Posted by Hypocrisy should end, too, but, sadly, it won't. on 04/26/2017 at 9:33 AM

Re: “Editor’s Note

The commentary above lacks true human love.

12 likes, 10 dislikes
Posted by Unfair discrimination started with the comment right above mine. on 04/26/2017 at 7:30 AM

Re: “Editor’s Note

Thanks for encouraging us to talk to our kids' teachers, Ms. Herrerras. My kid's teachers teach in a Catholic school, so I'll be able to tell them the budget cuts and frozen salaries and worries about losing enrollment to charters they've experienced during the last several years may be over, now that the state has further scaled back its economic discrimination against schools affiliated with one of the religions this country's Constitution guarantees its citizens the right to exercise. Hallelujah.

(The Catholic school teachers I know make less than public school teachers, even in Arizona, where public school teacher salaries are shockingly low. They have been willing to make an economic sacrifice to teach in an environment where the community is focused on values they believe in. They know that their sacrifice helps the schools keep tuition affordable for families, and they care about the wellbeing of the community as a whole and the families of their students, many of whom are living on very tight budgets. The students graduating from the Catholic schools I know are better prepared academically and in terms of civic values / volunteerism than the kids graduating from the public schools with which I have direct experience. I am able to make a direct, 1:1 comparison, having taught in Arizona public schools and in Arizona Catholic schools and having been a parent in both systems as well.)

Why shouldn't the state pony up and support the hard work of teachers in Catholic schools, who prepare students well for lives of service in the professions and in the broader community? Without vouchers, the state saves over $5K per year for every student enrolled in a Catholic school. That money belongs in the pockets of the parents paying tuition and the teachers working sacrificially at unacceptably low salaries. Not in the pockets of corporations which receive tax breaks as the real cost of educating the next generation is falsely suppressed when the government refuses to pay for education taking place in certain contexts.

We hear a lot about "discrimination" in the U.S. Strange that some of us still can't recognize a genuine case of it when we see it.

11 likes, 13 dislikes
Posted by Unfair discrimination should end now. on 04/25/2017 at 8:28 PM

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