Thursday, May 04, 2006

"The Mayor, a School, McGreevey & Cheney"

These are the responses to my May 3 article, "The Mayor, a School, McGreevey & Cheney." Thanks to all, please continue to provide us with your feedback


  1. I have a 14yr old son, just started High School, he have a lot friends in that school. He has been cutting a lot of classes and complete school days, my house was robbed by kids and the matter is in court with some of the kids. The kids have friends who are in Jail and are sending messages to my son that they will get him for snitching on his friends. I’m trying to get my son out from that school and the district refused to have him transfer to a school where I work, so I don’t have to loose a lot of time from work. They say I should move from where I live and own 2 homes to some where else.

  2. I didn't read the article in the Times, so I do not know if the errors are yours or Winerips. Irma Zardoya, not Zadoya, retired this winter. She was replaced by Yvonne Torres, not Kathleen Polina. Kathy Polina remains the LIS of a network of 10 schools, including Kennedy. The idea, by the way, that "the blame goes above the principal's pay grade" is true, but it does not go above the principal. The LIS's may sit higher on some secret organization chart, but they have no real authority, no day to day say in the functinoing of the school, no policy-making authority. They are the most useless set of middle managers the NYC Public School System has ever produced.

  3. Anonymous11:00 AM

    The Kennedy article is a perfect example of why we are trying to get enhanced whistleblower protection from the City Council.

  4. and you like Bloomberg? How could this happen on the "Education Mayor's watch? Is Chancelor Klein asleep at the wheel of the Education Ferry?

  5. Anonymous11:12 AM

    In a day when no child is supposed to be left behind, it is quite remarkable that Kennedy High School principal has opted to degrade one of the most prized academic achievements of these United States - to wit, The New York State Regents Examinations. These exams are the pinnacle of achievement of any student in the state. They have always been the one thing that proves the educational advantage of the New York City public and private schools.

    To lessen their academic value by lowering the standard of measurement is an embarrassment to the entire state, the Board of Regents itself and reflects quite poorly on the Governor and his educational standards. It is my hope that this matter can be handled locally. But I question that possibility in a most serious matter. The bequeathal of a New York State Regents’ Diploma was, at one time, a very honorable event in the academic achievement of a student. If this policy of pass/fail is to remain, the entire premise falls by the wayside. Why should the other students bother to work so hard to achieve something that has no more equal standard? This situation is entirely unfair to all the students involved, and to every student in the state of New York who strives to achieve this academic honor.

    And now, because I cannot resist a personal story, I must tell you that as a student, I was miserable at all sorts of mathematics. If it were not for a very dedicated first year teacher during my freshman algebra, I would have failed that Regents exam. For 10 weeks before the exam, that teacher met with us on Saturday mornings to reteach what she already taught us during the week. My fellow students and I worked so hard to pass. We did all the extra homework she gave us, and most of us actually did pass. (I was delighted to have passed with 76% - if memory serves correctly.)

    I was fortunate enough to be in a place and time when teachers saw that the academic achievement of their students DID reflect on their own professional dedication. I was also fortunate to have a teacher who could see that my failures were not my fault. For me, there was a need to approach the subject matter from a slightly different vantage point. If I had been in a school building today, I might have been placed in some special education classroom, when, in fact, my IQ does not warrant such a result. As you may have deduced from this writing, my English language skills are quite the antithesis of my mathematical skill.

    Now, for the question: would those teachers who are speaking up, as well as those who did not, have that much dedication? Are they really able to see their students as grown up versions of themselves, as successful achievers? If the rules are reinstated, will those very same teachers reach out to the students who need a little extra help in order to pass those Regents exams with actual passing grades?

    It is my hope that the level of dedication does not become lower when it is time to help the student population of Kennedy High School.

    It is my hope that the principal was not reacting to a staff that may be burned out, unable to take sabbaticals, worried about safety issues or generally being mistreated after they spent so many years educating themselves to be qualified to teach at the high school level.

    Somewhere, probably located at some midpoint, there is an answer to these questions and to the situation in Kennedy High School.

  6. Thanks for the reporting and comments. I had also read the Times report
    on grades engineering at JFK HS and had the same feeling of shock. The
    worst part of it is that, because the word gets around, those really good
    students who scored good grades on their own will be tarred with the belief
    that their grades were due to school administration engineering (also known
    as affirmative action).

  7. The personal development industry has never been bigger! It consists of a myriad of authors basically telling us how to improve our lives. We are constantly being told self help and self improvement has never been easier. New techniques, gadgets and potions adorn the shelves of new age shops and the 1 billion dollar industry, that is personal development, offers many different approaches to help better our lives. They offer ways to increase our bounty and ultimately alter our own reality. A great example of this is how to develop a Prosperity Consciousness. But does this state really exist and if it does will it bring the effortless unlimited wealth promised?
    A lot has been written about prosperity and how to attain it. We have been told by many religious traditions and every personal development guru that the Universersal Source (God, Spirit, Cosmic Mind or whatever label you chose to give it) is boundless wealth. We are also told that abundance, wealth and prosperity are our birthright! Why then are so many people ill, broke, frustrated and unfulfilled? Can a person really develop a prosperity consciousness and effortlessly attract wealth? Well as with everything in life there is only one way to find out. Test it for yourself!

    Before we can attain and then test the effectiveness of having a prosperity consciousness we need to understand some basic truths. Let's start by explaining three fundamentals of personal development namely; 1. The Universal Source is all wealth, abundance and prosperity; 2. Prosperity is our birthright; 3. You get more of what you focus on.

    1. Why are we told that the Universal Source is unlimited wealth? - Because the Universal Source is the consciousness of the Universe - a universe that is still expanding. It is the driving force behind physical reality. It created everything you see, hear, touch and smell as well as all that we are unaware of (microwaves, radiation, air etc.). It has been stated in religious and metaphysical traditions that this intelligence is not only the Source of everything but that it is also the substance of it! It creates the Universe from itself! It is omnipresent (everywhere present). That means that the entire seen and unseen aspects of the universe are a part of this Universal Source. Science reaffirms this theory as it states that nothing is solid and everything is just one mass of pure energy that vibrates at different frequencies and gives the illusion of separateness.
    So we can now claim that the Universal Source is unlimited wealth, abundance and prosperity with some belief. For if this Source is the very substance of everything then it is all the wealth, abundance and prosperity that exists at this very moment!
    Ok so far? Now lets look at the second point - prosperity is our birthright.

    2. If this Universal Intelligence is the source and substance of all things then there can be only one intelligence in the Universe. Jesus said to his disciples "know ye not that you are the temple of the living God?" Buddha attained enlightenment and "oneness". The list of these religious teachings are too numerous to mention but their message remains the same - God (Universal Substance) resides within and around us. It's very substance makes up our physical body and the world around us - "For in him we live, move and have our being" Acts17:28. Therefore, if this Universal Source is at the very core of our being and is the substance from which we take physical form then it stands to reason that we are connected to everyone else and in fact everything else around us - we are a part of all the wealth, abundance and prosperity of the universe. Just as your hand or foot is a part of your body, so every grain of sand, blade of grass, wisp of wind, bar of gold and brick that is laid in a mansion is part of you. The unlimited wealth of the universe is yours for the claiming. It is already yours, always has been and always will be. It is a part of you.
    Ok let's go the third point - you get more of what you focus on.

    3. "It never rains but it pours", is a saying I have used myself in the past. Have you ever wondered why such a statement appears to be true? Well metaphysics and religion tell us that "as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he" or as Job cried out to God "For that which I greatly feared has come upon me". What we focus our conscious attention on increases! Don't believe me? Test it for yourself! If you can muster up the strength to do it then think in negative terms for a week. Judge everything that happens to you in negative terms and think only of a negative outcome and watch what happens in your world!!! This is a relatively easy experiment as we are conditioned to think negatively by the world. A word of warning though - once you prove that your focus determines your reality stop thinking negative thoughts as best you can.
    I will not go into the 'hows' of why our focus has such a profound influence on our lives (that would be the subject of a book or perhaps a future article) just prove to yourself that it does. A clue can be found in the teachings of Jesus when he said "The Kingdom of heaven is within".
    So now we have the three principles of the prosperity consciousness explained let's put it to work. The attainment of a prosperity consciousness is relatively simple - just think on the first two principles until you fully understand them and integrate them into your consciousness. As you focus on them you will discover that your feelings of lack disappear and you begin to feel a connection with everything around you. It is really just an attitude shift - nothing metaphysical or mystical about it at all. You begin to consciously realize that everything is a part of you. Your focus changes from poverty to wealth.
    If it helps make a list of affirmations that correspond to the two principles outlined e.g. "God is the Source and substance of everything", "I am at one with everyone and everything around me", "I am a part of all the wealth, abundance and prosperity of the Universe" etc. Don't just rhyme them off in a parrot like manner, think on them and realize the scientific or spiritual truths behind them.

    Will it work? Well I can say now that if you follow the above instructions a real change will happen in you. You will start to see the beauty of the world and the unlimited resources that are available within and around you. Will you attain wealth, abundance and prosperity? Test it for yourself! hypnosis

  8. Anonymous12:26 AM

    i know just what you or talkung children has had it very hard at this school they attends. first thery say that they are trouble makers, then they say that they or disrestful. now its worst. ihave tried to get them transfer to another school and told the school that we would take them. but now they want to keep them out. why?