Saturday, March 23, 2013

School Site Councils are "Good stuff!"

My letter to Hercules principals:

Dear Hercules School Principals, 

Recently, I decided to visit our schools in Hercules to have a closer look at the situation at hand as my daughter will be enrolled in the not-too-distant future.  My motivation for this is to help garner more support for our schools in Hercules, especially after the Measure K defeat.  The vehicle I am using for doing my homework is the School Site Council meeting as it includes a built-in component for community involvement, so I have decided to attend all Hercules school site council meetings. 

I believe I made the right call as I have already been rewarded with some very positive glimpses of what you are doing in your schools.  I want to borrow a line from Hanna Ranch Principal, Greg Santiago, who on a couple of times during their SSC meeting, exclaimed "That's good stuff!"  He was referring to those things being tried that resulted in a very positive learning experience for the kids at his school.  At the meetings I have attended thus far, I have witnessed involved parents, devoted teachers, concerned citizens, and hard-working principals coming together for our kids at this meeting.  That in itself is good stuff!

Those who know me know that I tend to focus on the negative, that my own saying might be something more like "That's bad stuff!" as I demand change, more oversight, modified election procedures, etc.  There are others like me and what harms the support for our schools is when the bad stuff gets more visibility than the good stuff.  I'm not saying that I am going to turn away from the bad stuff, but I am going to make a commitment to help accentuate the good stuff that is going on in our schools in Hercules.  I am even contemplating starting a Hercules Education newsletter if there is an interest for such.

What I ask from you is that you see your SSC meeting as an opportunity to share the good stuff that is happening at each of your respective school sites, that you devote the necessary time to these meetings, and that you give them maximum visibility.  These meetings are a conduit for parent-community involvement that is necessary for our schools to succeed.  It is at these meetings that parents learn how to help their child succeed in your respective schools.  A positive experience at these meetings also results in more support for your school.   Our children need to know that they are going to a school that is filled with good stuff, so let's not let them down.

Thanks for accommodating my requests for meeting agendas, minutes, etc.  I'll see you at your next SSC meeting.  Take care.

Giorgio Cosentino, Hercules parent

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