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Live coverage of Election Day 2012

Where was that Obama mural?

November 6, 2012 at 4:35 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Don't forget your picture ID on Election Day

Just want to point out that your Douglas County Clerk issued free voter ID's at several locations throughout the county, as well as at the main office, for those who lacked the necessary identification:http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2012/jul/27/county-offers-own-voter-id-system/

He was the first election official in the country to do so.

November 6, 2012 at 4:24 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Actual enrollment patterns not matching forecasts

There are kids showing up every day at Kennedy, and those students are not on the Sept 20 rolls. I'm sure this is happening all over Lawrence.

Want to save money? Have more dollars for education in Lawrence? Try telling Brownback to stop slashing state revenues and robbing our children's future.

November 4, 2012 at 8:15 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Halloween hodgepodge: Schools put on range of fall celebrations

Just want to put in a plug for Kennedy's Fall Family Festival, taking place tomorrow night! Food, games, trick-or-treating, crafts, and lots of fun! 6-8pm on the 30th.

October 29, 2012 at 9:12 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

First Bell: Kennedy and AYP; another teacher honor; more on enrollment

"Except for Kennedy."

It's like you can't even help yourself.

September 21, 2012 at 3:38 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

All but 1 Lawrence school meet 'Standard of Excellence'

Yes, other schools have "poor neighborhoods" but Kennedy has the lowest percentage of low SES students of any school in the district. And it's not just the socio-economic status that's at issue-- for example, doctoral students with children might be low income, but highly educated and therefore more likely to prep their kids for school. Not a lot of PhD students living around Kennedy. (And your insults to their grammar are just rude-- they have a right to their opinion even if they can't express themselves as well as you imagine yourself to.)

It's not just the money. It's the education level, it's the lack of familiarity with the way schools work, it's parents holding down three jobs, and the lack of commitment by the community to support these families. Shutting down Kennedy means these kids become the bullied poor kids wherever they go. And there's nothing exceptional going on at any other school that's going to magically, suddenly bring kids up to AYP who have entered grade school significantly behind their peers in other schools. In fact, it is a testament to Kennedy that by middle school and high school, standards are being met. These kids don't magically test out once they hit 6th grade-- YEARS of education by the dedicated Kennedy staff brings them there.

I know this because my kids go to Kennedy. I sat through a year of consolidation meetings hearing folks extol the virtues of their schools, celebrating some asinine things in the attempt to save themselves. But the idea of closing a school of kids who NEED a local school, a great school, because they aren't progressing fast enough-- well that's just as asinine. Closing Kennedy would just be one more way of quitting these kids.

September 19, 2012 at 5:42 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Report criticizes voter ID law in Kansas, other states

Show me massive voter fraud. This law will disenfranchise many, many more voters than the number of voters who vote fraudulently (which is estimated, and not proven.) No one has ever proven 'massive' voter fraud-- there are ideas about it, yes. Few prosecutions. This thing is fundamentally a politician-created 'problem.'

Think about it: if you aren't legally in this country, is showing up to VOTE where you could get caught going to be first on your to-do list? No way. Lay low, don't get caught.

July 18, 2012 at 9:38 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Spending doesn’t equal achievement

Today's tax-supported funding per pupil is roughly the same as the rate in 1998. Ask yourself: does housing cost more or less than in 1998? Gas? Clothing? Technology? A gallon of milk?

Exactly.

What does more money buy? It buys teachers who are willing to stay in the state because they are being paid competitively. It means teachers can afford to live in the town in which they work. It buys programs to bring struggling students up, and achieving students farther. It buys social workers to notice the student who is struggling at home, or who may have undiagnosed issues prohibiting them from their full potential. It buys full time schools nurses, so that teachers can spend time with students, instead of dealing with medical issues for which they are not trained. It buys up-to-date technology, books, and facilities that support learning. More money for more teachers means smaller class sizes, which translates to more one-on-one time-- less students slipping through the cracks-- which can translate to less drop-outs.

For communities that do not have the tax base to supplement the cost-per-pupil through local initiatives, state education dollars mean a fair shake at an equitable education.

While state funding HAS increased since Montoy, the amount-per-pupil received is almost $500 dollars less per pupil than that court mandate. For Lawrence schools, this equates to over $5 million dollars that is currently not being spent on initiatives that could help our students.

NCLB is a flawed system, and there is little argument that changes need to be made. However, we fail our students by under-funding their education. By failing those students, we fail to invest in the long-term success of Kansas.

March 30, 2012 at 11:05 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Comparison of large, small class sizes underscores importance of personalized interactions

I agree with all three points. Hillcrest accepts transfers it cannot fit because of the need to keep the ESL/non-ESL students within a balanced ratio (they shoot for no more than 60% ESL.) Soooo... if you moved out half of the ESL kids (who are being bused from all over, and could be effectively taken anywhere-- how about Prairie Park which is not even within 70% of capacity) to a new cluster, then not only would it remove the ESL students, but also reduce the number of non-ESL transfers that are taken to balance the ESL kids out.

Interesting point: only 40% of the kids at Hillcrest live "in district." Take away the ESL kids that are "in district" (and therefore still bused) then that number drops to less than 20%.

Class sizes matter-- but the space is THERE. Re-adjusting boundaries makes this possible.

March 21, 2012 at 9:10 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

No closings

Just to point out-- there were only proposals to build one new school. The others were expansions packaged with much-needed renovations.

February 16, 2012 at 8:23 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

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