It’s no secret that School Board member Scott Shine and I have not seen eye to eye. I think he is a terrible school board member and he thinks I am a terrible blogger and teacher.
To be honest I won’t disagree with his blogger assertion. If you have read my blog and cringed at bad grammar and inartful phrases, you aren’t the only one. As for my teaching well he’s never seen it so how he can judge that is beyond me, but I have seen his, um, err school boarding and it has been dreadful and he’s been showcasing how dreadful it is this week.
When he heard the superintendent may be leaving, he expressed some remorse but also wished him well. A far cry from the apocalyptic sentiment he expressed last fall when the school board almost parted ways with him.
“It would be a tragic mistake to terminate Dr. Vitti in the middle of the comprehensive school reform work we are currently undertaking,” Shine said. “In addition, termination in the middle of the school year would send a shock wave through the school system and likely damage students’ academic achievement.”
He went from it being apocalyptic, to, that sucks, be sure to write.
Hyperbole be thy friend Scott, just like when he said in News4Jax: “The last time the district looked for a superintendent that was a 9 to 12 month process,” Shine said.
Unlike Scott I was there through the process, and the reality is it took about six months. The board voted not to renew Ed Pratt-Dannal’s contract and spent the summer and early fall looking for and hiring his replacement.
Shine also said:
Duval County School Board member Scott Shine said Monday that he doesn’t want to lose Vitti and will do what he can to keep him in Jacksonville.
“I’m concerned. We’ve had a lot of progress in the school district. Academic achievement is up. Graduation rates are up. Teacher morale has increased, so he’s made a positive difference,” Shine said.
The graduation rates are up canard is frustrating as grad rates are up everywhere, but when he said teacher morale is up, what went up was my blood pressure.
He is probably referring to the TNTP surveys which the super touted as showing morale being up but the problems with the survey are legion but of course Shine chooses to ignore them
so he can defend his man-crush and just go with what sounds good to him.
First ten percent of teachers didn’t even bother to fill the surveys out. Then some teachers have told me they were forced to fill out the surveys during early release training and others said they filled them out in a positive fashion because they wanted to avoid hours of in service training.
I can relate too because last year the staff at my school seemed to be asked a half dozen times, why we didn’t have a best friend at school.
The thing is I know a lot of people like their schools and even their administrations, but that doesn’t mean their morale is up and that doesn’t mean they think downtown is doing a good job either.
A reader pointed out they don’t ask questions about how the super or the administration is doing on those surveys and I believe the reason is they don’t want to know what teachers really think and Scott Shine definitely doesn’t want to know.
Why should Shine do his job and be out their talking and meeting with teachers, when he can point to some self serving survey and say, look things are peachy? The answer, since being on the board is little more than a check on a bucket list for him, as he unsuccessfully ran for the city council twice before he ran for school board edging out more qualified candidates, is there is no reason for him to do so.
We deserve better than the superintendent and we deserve better than Shine as well.
Being on the school board is serious business, it is time Shine started treating it that way.