Friday, March 11, 2011

Turnaround Model - Chaparral kids made me so proud

Heres what has been happening in my life right now.

These are a few of my facebook status updates and comments for the past few days.

"Sorry I would have answered earlier, but I was comiserating at the bar with my co-workers; no worries though I was just imbibing in diet coke. They are cleaning house at my school, everyone has to re-apply, but the new principal can only hire back up to only 50%, so the rest of us are being distributed throughout the district, but we have to apply for those as well. My seniority number is so high that I may not be able to find a job."

"I dont think the school board expected this kind of response from chaparral."

"I think the kids showed that they do care and that this deicision has some very negative consequences. We didnt get the decision reversed, but that would have been more then we expected. We just hope that the board will think twice before doing this to another school like Chap. Esp when I have recieved txt and email from people at other schools who wish this was happening to their hostile school."

"I am so proud to be a Chaparral teacher this week. I have never seen such a massive amount of love and support from a student population directed to their principal and teachers. We have had signs, letters, notes of thanks to the teachers, rallys after school, student organized marches to the school district office to show how much they support their staff.
I have had countless students stop me in the hall way to just give me a hug and tell me that they hope I am still at Chap next year. I really hope that the students are able to keep at least a few key teachers who have made a personal connection with the student body so that they can have a little stabilitiy next year.
This exact thing is happening at other schools in the valley and their kids are NOT reacting the same way, Chap=Family. Its not just another school. We have been one of the main stories in the new(print and TV) for 3 days now. I call that awesome!"

Article online, found at one of the news websites.
Several local schools are bracing for major changes involving teachers and staff. Five Clark County schools will soon go through restructuring which could require teachers to reapply for their jobs.
So far, News 3 has identified Chaparral High, Mojave High, Hancock Elementary and Western High as schools being affected. The identity of the fifth school remains unknown.
At Chaparral Wednesday afternoon, more than 100 students rallied in protest when school let out.
Only about half the teachers and administrators who reapply for their jobs will be allowed to return.
“I work at a school that I’m very proud of,” said Chaparral teacher David Winkler. “Love Chaparral, love my colleagues; they’re hardworking people and that’s why I’m here.”
Chaparral, however, is among five low-achieving schools in the district which require serious change. At stake is the district’s share of $9 million in federal funds.
“We don’t want the teachers to get punished for the students’ actions, so we want to prove to Las Vegas that the students can bring our grades up and try harder,” one Chaparral student told News 3.
The restructuring is something the state is calling a turnaround model. It will also involve training and changes in how teachers teach.
The State Department of Education identified the underperforming schools by way of test scores and graduation rates. The district is trying to put a positive spin on the situation, saying it is aware improvements need to be made and that those federal funds are badly needed.
“We want to make sure that our children have the best opportunity to learn and to achieve. If we’ve been doing something for five years and we still have low scores at that school, we should be doing something different,” said Carolyn Edwards, CCSD board president.
Still, it’s a tough sell for those students who are doing well and may be losing a favorite teacher.
The district says no one will be fired in the process, but by next year many will end up at a different school.
The changes are expected to go into effect next school year. This has nothing to do with the impending budget cuts. If the governor’s budget is approved, the budget will have to cut about $400 million, which would result in layoffs.

“It took years to turn this school into a community and will only take a few weeks to destroy their spirit. Many of these children lead fragile lives and the district is about to take away the only positive adult influences some of these kids have. All this to receive additional grant money that will probably never be spent on the students that are paying for it.” ..laura cress (parent of a chaparral student).

Students Take 'Turnaround' Protest To School Board - Las Vegas News Story - KVVU Las Vegas
LAS VEGAS -- Students from Chaparral High School planned a second day of protests Thursday over the Clark County School Districts plan to put five under-performing schools in turnaround. Thursday, March 10, 2011.


  1. What an amazing cry of support from your students!! No Child Left Behind is poor program that punishes teachers and administration.

  2. Our students are nothing short of AMAZING! Today, they became the teachers...