Thursday, August 19, 2010

Carolina School for Inquiry Makes AYP Again

Carolina School for Inquiry made AYP for the second year in a row.  This is a strong testament to the great lead teacher/director and the wonderful teachers who remain committed to child-centered, multi-age, inquiry-based education.  This is a testament to the parents and families who support the school and their children.  It is a testament to the community partners who still support the idea of excellent education in SC.  It is a testament to the children who love to learn when allowed to shine as they do at CSI.

The CSI Board of Directors (with a notable exception) seem to have missed the memo.  In the past year, they have spent their efforts trying to undermine the charter, and when that failed, trying to undermine the school, telling people that multi-age inquiry didn't work.  Mind you, some of these people have children who have been very successful at this school. 

Last Tuesday at a board meeting held the day after school started, they dug in their heels to avoid approving contracts for three new teachers.  Two teachers resigned at the last minute in a fashion which could have left the school in a lurch if there weren't so many bright professional educators who want to be a part of multi-aged education.  However, by refusing to approve the terms of the contract in a timely manner (they can have emergency meetings for every thing else, but not this), they have disrupted the beginning of school.  This is not to say that the board didn't do anything Tuesday night.  They approved the purchase of report card covers and a wand to put letters on the announcement board.  Hip-hip-freakin-hooray.

The board did approve the contracts of the teachers, albeit in a childish and cowardly way.  They sat there in front of parents and visitors pouting while two board members made the motion, seconded, and voted to approve.  They stared at the ceiling and refused to vote yes or no.  (The always heroic "present" vote.)  It was suggested by some parents there that maybe they planned to try to go back on the approval of the teachers when they weren't in the public eye... but I don't see how that would work.  If they were so craven as to try that, I'd have say a few extra rosaries.  It must really hurt to be so recalcitrant and self-centered.  What kind of person who claims to care for excellent education for all students would deprive children of stability in the opening days of school? 

Perhaps they've seen the writing on the wall.  The writing that said "Carolina School for Inquiry makes AYP."  The writing from children that shows their enthusiasm for learning that goes beyond the test.  The writing that says that Carolina School for Inquiry is a great public charter school and if they don't like it, they should take their magic wand and go home.  Or at least to some other more traditional school.