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Why the comparison? a reply to Mike Curley.

Comparison's are a great way to raise standards.    Please review the Third 
International Math and Science Study  on the web.brought by The Education 
Department at Boston College, the National Center fro Educational 
Statistics, The National Science Foundation,  Read Michigan State 
University's report (Dr. Schmidt) and Before its too late" are great 
starting points.  Recall that I am interested in seeing all our students 
college bound or not receive the competitive advantage.  Please give  Mike 
Rush from the Idaho Division of Vocational Education a call for more 
information (334-3216).  Mike will confirm that it takes about 20% of the 
work force to have a Bachelor's or above to run the country.  All 
indicators reveal a need for Pro-Tech training.  Immigration allows about 
200,000 in each year as new Americans while our own will be working as the 

This state and district is to by law provide  a general, a uniform, and a 
thorough system of education.  It is not, this is a district that is 
college prep.  26% do not go on to post secondary and about 50% of those 
that do not complete college.  The district is not progressive and very out 
of step with the needs of our nation and  the needs of our students that do 
not go to or complete college.
The bias of the status quo is endemic  throughout the district.  MEA 
communication Nov. 1998.  "The Board seems quite concerned about supplying 
a labor pool to American Business."  The communication further demonstrated 
the MEA's position about Boards and thus the position of a large community 
consensus --the School-to- Work initiative.  Another e-mail from a 
teacher.  "American business is the big gorilla that causes the demise 
of  a student's education."
John Dewey would roll over in his grave.

Enough of the critical observations and let's get with the answer of why 
the comparison.  First,  measures and monitors are necessary to reach any 
goal or make any decision.The comparison was given to the district will in 
advance for obvious reasons. Further, it took about two month's of effort 
to receive the information from the MSD.   Pullman's information can be 
gathered in minutes as they measure and monitor monthly and also report to 
the patronage in a comprehensive manner.  Great solution to the current 
dilemma of information transfer.

  Since we find ourselves in a smaller more connected world, a rapidly 
changing economy and job market, educational changes must be made to 
accommodate our student's need.  (Be willing to change).  In our country 
the center three quintiles of wage earners are drifting downward in real 
terms.  Yet, there are a couple of basic items that have propelled this 
country above the rest of the world.  Suggested reading is Economist Mark 
Skousen's Book "The Making of Modern Economics."  After all, economic 
philosophy changed more landscapes than almost any other item.  (Communism, 
National Socialism. mercantilism, etc).

In a nut shell:  Countries can have good school systems (Former Soviet 
Union  and clients, Europe, Japan, Korea. etc.) and yet in real standard of 
living indicators they lag extremely far behind the US for all economic 
quintiles.  It boils down to freedom, choice, lack of government 
intrusion.  Now bear with me, granting citizens the maximum freedom 
possible to pursue their public and private interests under a tolerable 
system of justice is the key (Democratic capitalism).  Presently our school 
system lacks in the number of options for students.----Pro Tech, dual 
enrollment, flexibility in the strands, school choice, foreign exchange 
counseling, etc.  Following this observation, if the MSD builds in choice 
for its students than outcomes will be greatly enhanced and enrollment will 

So in practical terms: have dual enrollment for the 27% of students that 
would take advantage if the Pullman numbers collate.  Have students that 
would benefit in vocational arts and use the Universities facilities with 
our instructors.  Make complete use of businesses.  Pullman has 25.2% FTE 
in Votech.  Be very innovative in the strands.  Have elementaries each with 
different emphasis.  Students need goals and provide for comprehensive 
testing and counseling, (Johnson O'Connor Tests).  Have great summer 
sessions, sponsor music camps, art camps, work experiences, Please keep the 
students engage since numbers of parents are both working,  and the list 
goes on.  Be efficient,  Pullman has less staff, uses community resources 
more ( Schweitzer Engineering and the University).

Economist  Buchanan (Gerge Mason) pushes for more choice, less government 
spending, protecting minority rights, curbing open-ended entitlement 
claims, government power shifted to the local level.

Obviously, this school system is ground down by governmental 
intrusions--rules and regs.,, exiting standards, assessments, wecan'titis 
and yabutitis.  MSD still has the advantage over Pullman because of more 
local control.  Yet with the Moscow tradition of tremendous internal 
conflict nothing can be done.  Therefore the necessity of long term 
contracts  Allow the MEA to draft the contract.  The UAW  has multi year 
contracts.   Please review NE president Bob Chase's National Press Club 
Speech and ask the MEA to  follow his direction.  Don't turn down 
unbelievable opportunities and help ( The National Guard and the business 
communities alliance that was formed in the mid 90", service club project 
and help, grants, etc).  Recall that it was difficult for the Rotary to 
bring  Mentor's program.  Be part of the community, be aggressive, be user 
friendly and  be timely.

This district needs to get rid of the permanent levy and come to the public 
yearly for accountability.   Steep enrollment declines tell it all, then 
add: the low morale , the lack of cohesiveness between buildings, between 
the admin/MEA-MEA/Boards, misguided spending, lack of doing anything about 
classroom environments, lack of considering more instructional days, lack 
of accomplishing goals such as fields on Joseph Street by following the 
example of Colfax using volunteers on their 22 acres of flood plain at 
1/8th the cost etc.   What happened to Goals 2000 and their efforts?--- 
Disregarded.  Another example, West Park.  What will happen if nothing changes?

  Robert Chase speaks of accountability.  He talks of peer review processes 
that allows the profession to police its own and set the standards of 
excellence.  Being fired for a poor job creates accountability 
.  Entitlements can not be open ended and have any system survive.  In the 
mid 90's leave time was about 2400 days.    Cutting back to 2400 days would 
fund the teams for example.  Be the best and ask the public for help with 
programs and ideas.    Change is the reason for the comparison.  Thanks for 
reading this long rendering of personal opinion.   No I am not running for 
legistative office, never was, only asked.  too policitally 
incorrect  Jerry

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