Betts Putnam-Hidalgo 
Member since Sep 27, 2012


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Re: “Koch Brothers Infiltrate Pima County Schools With a High School Econ Course

The difference between the MAS program and the Koch program is that one indicates that it is teaching a particular lens on history, and does not pretend to teach all history. The other, however, DOES totalize itself--that is, it purports to teach Ethics, Economy and Entrepreneurship without at all indicating that it is teaching a LIBERTARIAN ethics (?!) including a very one sided Economy and Entrepreneurship. Other than that, though, the writer is correct above--the course was "approved" on a day that there was no Board meeting (as confirmed by Mary Alice Wallace who knows the schedules and the archives) and the textbook appears to have only been confirmed by being bought and paid for (according to FOIA information). According to publisher and Freedom Center information, the course can only be offered in high schools where the administration has committed, prior to its teachers taking the summer 2015 workshop, to hold the course--so one wonders who, during the Sanchez administration, offered so many assurances that the class would be held. Of course given the revolving door of friends from Texas and local administrators, many with very questionable qualifications for those jobs, there is no one from that era left at 1010 in those positions who can answer for how the course ever got authorized to begin with. But Board authorization, unless gathered in famous Board one on one's, never took place.

12 likes, 8 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 10/16/2017 at 5:51 AM

Re: “New TV Ad Asks McCain To Stop Latest GOP Healthcare Disaster

bslap I wonder if you walk your own talk. If you were in a hurricane, would you reject government aid? An earthquake? Do you not use highways or the post office or the telephone system or the internet--all examples of projects either paid for or started by government...? If there is a run on the banks will you allow your deposits to be eaten up? Because that insurance on your deposit is a federal program, and with rhetoric like yours, you damned well better not use it.

That is right, the health care in this country, one of the richest in the world WAS a disaster 6 years ago. And, by the way, the bill also erases Planned Parenthood, which is used by women (you know, that 52% of the population whose plumbing needs regular maintenance?) for basic health care far more than for abortions, which are never paid for anyway by the feds. It is a disastrous bill that will give the state a huge amount of money to sweep and use as they wish, as they have done with so many other designated funds. Oh! Thats it! Maybe you are or are related to one of our illustrious legislators, and looking for a sweet stack of new FEDERAL cash to spend at the state level on corporate giveaways?

9 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 09/21/2017 at 7:56 AM

Re: “San Antonio's Pre-K Program

bslap I protest. Some people do like public education and TUSD and spend their/our lives trying to improve it. In any case Strong Start is not even about TUSD, its about preschoolers. I suppose if you were raised without using any public services as a youngster then you can be a bitter and selfish oldster now. But my guess is that that was not the case. We all pretty much used services, like roads, telephones (at that time) and other items that were heavily subisidized by taxpayers.To be so selfish about paying forward what someone paid forward for you is just downright egotistical and shortsighted. This is what societies do for one another.

12 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 08/21/2017 at 8:21 AM

Re: “A Look At TUSD's AzMERIT Scores

I wondered, as I looked at the data, exactly how it is collected. That is, as we watch from year to year, aren't we watching roughly the same kids, as they go through? 2015's 5th graders are 2016's sixth graders, right? What effect does that have on the scores? And if we know anything from the scores, its that the Districts' desegregation efforts to reduce the achievement gap are not working, no matter how much window dressing top Administration puts on it.The district has been failing its black and brown kids in epic proportions, all the while paying vast sums of money to lawyers to say "it aint so". Needless to say, that money would be far better spent in the classroom.

And then from a different direction there are possible other explanations for our district wide poor achievement. Almost the only good answer by the candidate for superintendent last night referred to the effect of Board behavior on district performance. He stated that he had read a study recently that correlated divisive, untrusting board behavior (as measured by watching videos of the Boards in action) with low scoring districts. In other words, looking across multiple districts, and observing Board behavior on video, the more the members of the Boards trusted each other, or at least acted as if they did, the higher performing the Distric, as measured by grading (A-F). It seems that TUSD voters succeed in switching Board majorities, but the divisive, cruel and manipulative way the members treat each other never seems to change much. This might be an additional place to look for WHY our District cannot seem to get out of its achievement crisis. Perhaps the adults in the room need to model better behavior as they (supposedly) focus on the children in the schools.

24 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 08/15/2017 at 7:49 AM

Re: “A Few Thoughts On the Mexican American Studies Trial

Huppenthal's comment didn't even make any sense as a response to this article. As such, it doesn't even really deserve a lot of conversation: sort of like Drumpfs repeated tweets. The bottom line is that it is sickening seeing the endless repetition of "Anglo History Only" as the model that public education should use. Language is not the issue here--the issue is do you present history as a rich, moving and developing tapestry of rights and wrongs, causes and effects and interactions between peoples and genders and political parties and etc.? Or do you present it as a monocolor story that ends at the second world war (the last one we "won"---think about that please) and still has elementary school kids reading the same damned white male canon that I had to read fifty years ago? C'mon people, this is a no brainer. Pretending that critical people and thinkers and philosophies don't exist doesn't make them go away. Ignoring Marxism doesn't make it NOT one of the most relevant economic systems to a huge number of people in the world--it only makes you ignorant. Our recent Presidential election is a real slam to the education system in this country and the return and reinvigoration of programs like MAS are essential to turn it and this country around.

38 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 07/27/2017 at 8:27 AM

Re: “Meet the New 'What the Hell, I Got Nothing Else To Do' Teacher

Does anyone who supports this policy remember how mature YOU were when you graduated with your BA or BS? This is a disastrous idea right out of the cooker of no less a public school advocate than Lisa Graham Keegan and of course the still-celebrated but (thankfully) EX - Superintendent of TUSD. One has to wonder if his most avid cheerleaders support this idea--you know, the teachers and a principal or two that can't wait to have their pictures taken with him. Way to support public ed, y'all. I must say that having spent the weekend reading about the Texas Miracle, I see where he got his bag of tricks and I would respectfully suggest that we VERY carefully vet educators from that state in the future.

34 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 05/31/2017 at 4:02 PM

Re: “Anyone Can Teach. It's Easy! (At Least That's What Republican Legislators and the Governor Tell Me.)

I ask all of you who think this is a great idea to send your children to a school taught by this new pool of teachers, thats all. If we had had this kind of teacher under HT Sanchez, who co-wrote an article suggesting this very thing with the voucher queen, and HIS district, TUSD, had been allowed to train people with a BA or a BS to be teachers, we would have even more of his minions who mindlessly follow his lead than we have now. He paid close attention to training all of the new principals he brought on, and that hasn't necessarily brought bucketloads of good news to the district. Highlighting loyalty over credentials (even his own!) is not a good leadership strategy and slowly but surely kills the institution. Given how long it will take to clear the deadwood of the district out--that is, the folks, starting at the Board level, who are awfully good followers but miserable leaders--that would probably be educational malpractice towards our students and fatal for the district.

39 likes, 8 dislikes
Posted by Betts Putnam-Hidalgo on 05/29/2017 at 7:29 AM

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