The post that angry_parent is referring to is These Are the People in My Neighborhood? and I do stand by these words. It would be easy for me to pull the post, apologize, and/or hide behind my computer monitor. Instead, I won't. I truly believe that our school system at large - not just out here in Carbon Valley and not just in our district either - suffers because parents don't care. That was the point of my post.
But with your newly elected PTO president, things should be getting better. Sharon is a terrific mom, a classy lady, smart, generous, and very interested in education and improving her neighborhood. What a boon for your school!
Be like Sharon. If you're so passionate about your neighborhood and school, do something about it. Hold a fundraiser. Complain about the overcrowding to the school district...that's what the folks in Erie do. Attend PTO, town, HOA, and school board meetings. Volunteer in the classroom. Form a committee to better maintain the school's lawn (something neighbors have been complaining about for a long time).
And as far as being the "self absorbed person that feels she is doing all of the work for her school and not getting the high amounts of credit her personality feels she deserves..." I deserve very little personal credit for getting the charter school up and running. It was a huge TEAM EFFORT of our staff, parents, kids, the Carbon Valley community at large, and a handful of board members (and some professional help too - lawyers, consultants, CPAs, real estate brokers, some nice folks at the CDE, et al.)
Honestly, if I had to leave the area tomorrow, I'd be sad that my kids wouldn't be at the school anymore. But I wouldn't miss the board position. It's a ton of work - and a lot of grief, brain damage, and stress - for an unpaid volunteer job.
Finally a response to a few people:
NightHawk - most charter schools in Colorado ARE public schools. However, I'm a big supporter of school choice and whatever works for you and your family whether it's mainsteam public schools, private schools, charter schools, or homeschooling.
Also, per our bylaws, I'm on the board until 2009, god help me.
angry_parent - Why didn't YOU respond on this blog, but felt it necessary to bring it over to Tri.Town.com? Yes, I've emailed Chad about this, too. I refuse to participate in the attack, um, discussion on Tri-Town.com because it's hard for non-members to respond without signing up. So I brought the discussion over here for the whole blogosphere to see and comment on - no logins or passwords needed.
Andie - I wasn't bashing my fellow board members. Instead, I was frustrated, burnt out and exhausted from having to do the majority of writing for the school at that time - press releases, handbooks, letters, email correspondence, and the website. I felt that they weren't good writers - a skill most people lack and that I struggle with even though I do this professionally - not that they weren't intelligent or capable of governing a charter school. Goodness knows they know their way around a spreadsheet much better than I do.
The beauty of our board is that we all bring different expertise to the school. It's made us one of the strongest charter school boards in the state. The situation has finally been rectified and we have another member with strong marketing and writing experience. It's taken a lot of pressure off me and given me time to pursue paid writing persuits.
Finally, should a person who's a member of a charter school board be allowed to discuss her personal feelings and opinions about education topics (or anything else) on her personal blog? I've struggled with it this a bit. That's why I don't mention names of schools or individuals in these posts - though I did link to several newspaper stories, so you'd have to be brain dead not to figure it out.
I've discussed this with my fellow board members and parents at our school. I've also had response from the blogging community at large and my fellow mom bloggers at ClubMom. Their opinion? It's your PERSONAL blog, do what you want. So, I stand by my decision to write about it on my PERSONAL blog instead of airing it on a message board like Tri-Town.com. After all, I'm writing here at A Mama's Rant as an private individual and not in any official capacity.
So folks, here's my PERSONAL opinion. The charter school has been a very positive event in my family's life. It's a great fit for my chidren's educational needs. I love the Core Knowlege-based curriculum as it meshes with with my family's educational philosophy. The staff is wonderful, too. Even though the board made many (minor) mistakes our first year, we've learned from them...and are doing better every day.
Also, if you're happy with the school and your experiences there, why do you care what I think? What's important is that your school choice is working for your family and their needs.
However, it's my PERSONAL opinion that my neighborhood school is in trouble, and that parents are content with the status quo, unlike parents in other communities who complain to the school district's board. It's at 131% capacity and will be at 181% capacity in a few year according to the school district. The principal is doing a good job, but will soon have to put the school on a split schedule to keep class sizes small. Why are parents putting up with that? The trailers in front of the school are an eyesore - along wit the weeds and patchy grass - and affect property values in our neighborhood, too.
Finally, if you don't like my PERSONAL opinions don't read my PERSONAL blog.
Please feel free to respond by leaving a comment below. Let's bring out the discussion for the whole blogosphere to see, not just the handful of folks over at Tri.Town.com.