I am writing this to share my support for Article 44 Academic Excellence.
I am the guardian of a current sophomore at WHS, the sixth child I’ve had in the WPS. We are a Fiske, WMS, and private school family. I’ve had three children graduate from WHS, and one graduate from private school. I’ve been a three-year Parent Elect to WHS School Council. I’ve been a PTO involved parent and a six-year Head Coach of Cheerleading at WHS. I have a broad background with WPS. I’ve lived in Wellesley for 13 years, and I am an African- American mother who cares about her children’s education as I believe all parents care about their children’s education equally. Often some assume being a concerned parent is not equally distributed amongst all cultures and socioecomic backgrounds. This is unfair and not true.
I’m a vocal supporter of Article 44 because I support the schools and our children, and I want the best for them. I recently collected all the necessary signatures to run for School Committee, and many of you supported me and the evaluation of Wellesley Public Schools. But I don’t have to be a School Committee member, candidate, teacher, or a parent to have an opinion on this matter, and neither do any of you. Yes, we elected a School Committee, but that doesn’t mean they are above reproach.
If the Core Values include Academic Excellence, than I suggest that it is not “working” or satisfactory for all, and as educators or parents, and/ or concerned citizens…we all are obligated to ponder why it’s not working and then strategically figure out how to reverse those troubling trends right now. Let’s put the concern back on students learning transferable life skills and applying academic rigor that increases the rate of success.
I have removed two children from the WPS, so I’ve been through the process and paperwork. I am aware that the School Department is only now beginning to track or evaluate the reasons why a student left, or where a student ends up. Perhaps because I pointed out the lack there, it’s now being done. It’s a stark reality that WPS isn’t doing performance measurement on themselves regarding withdrawn students. What would that report card look like? We have no data to examine this? Can’t we do more? Why should they fear a committee to evaluate school performance?
I think Bruce Franco is fearless. It’s not easy doing the work that he has done. Mr. Franco is a citizen who is participating in the greatest form of government in this country. Town Meeting, and the articles that a citizen can originate is evidence that this long- standing process does work. Now we can do our work, and examine the motions on their merit, without being clouded by the flaws. Behind the scenes, the author of Article 44 has repaired each flaw that was identified. We can approve the motions for Article 44 and start the trend of putting school excellence first, for real, and trust all areas of student development will improve once this happens.
The town seal includes three significant symbols—a tomahawk, flower, and a BOOK.
Please Vote YES for Article 44.