I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Warrington Middle School Town Hall: Parents a No-Show

Tonight a town-hall meeting was held at Warrington Middle School to address issues at the school with respect to student achievement.  Although the school has a student population of around 650---Only 12 parents (12) bothered to show up for tonight's meeting.  We heard a variety of opinions about why the vast majority of the parents were a no-show, including a lack of transportation.  We also heard that "some" were at work at their second jobs.  I wonder how many parents from Warrington are actually "at-home" parents, who do not work?  Wonder why they blew-off this meeting??  For those parents that were there--KUDOS to you!! For all the rest who were not at work or predisposed with something major----congratulations, you are a huge part of the problem at Warrington.  I cannot imagine ANYONE blaming administrators, staff, school board members, or anyone else for that matter--if these same blamers could not be bothered enough to attend this meeting tonight.  At this meeting, any parent that felt that things are not right could have voiced this opinion for all the district to see--including every member of the school board--as all five of us were there.  But these folks were a huge no-show! For the large contingent of teacher/staff from Warrington that stayed for the meeting--KUDOS to you.  You (teachers) did not deserve the cheap shot the local paper took at you in last Sunday's edition, and you certainly do not deserve to be beat up for an issue that, at Warrington MS in particular, is entirely a PARENT/COMMUNITY problem!

Al;though the tenor of the meeting was positive overall--I certainly wish PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY could have been discussed and highlighted;  A lack of prioritizing PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY and GOOD CHOICES IN LIFE is what has led to the HUGE issues at Warrington MS, not a "lack of programs or resources....."


Anonymous said...

I choked with frustration when a woman who was there said that the children needed to have people who believe in them, someone to tell them they can succeed. Most kids have been receiving that positive feedback BS since they were in Pre-K4 and would benefit from some old-fashioned discipline. I'm not speaking of corporal punishment (though many would indeed benefit from such), but rather a family (or at least ONE family member) who holds them accountable for both their behavior and their academic academic performance. Elephant in the room, indeed. You hit that nail on the head.

Anonymous said...

When parents make an excuse they could not come because of work dont fly--all other schools have parents that work and they get involved and or send a family member to receive and give feed back.

The excuse or "no way to get there" dont fly. If you were told you would receive $1,000,000 if you came--you would crawl to the school. Which leads to-- they chose knowingly not to come. As- the mentality is " whats in in for me"
Its you child for Christs sake, what price have you assigned to them? They must not be worth much to you.
Pure selfishness on parents part.

Perhaps you might want to consider giving up what you see no value in up for adoption

Anonymous said...

It's sad that only 12 parents showed up. Are you sure about your number? I trust that you counted them. The future for these kids is very sad, although they do live in a place where they still can do more than most in the rest of the world.
I saw an article that got me to think about the future of children from involved and uninvolved parents. The FDA is reviewing regulations to 3 parent in vitro fertilization. There are fears that involved parents will not only screen and select children free of disease, but they will also try to select cosmetic characteristics as well, like eye color, hair color, height and oh, intelligence. What will that future look like?

Kathy said...

Mr. Bergosh,
Thank you for your support. I teach first grade in Escambia County. It is refreshing to hear someone call out parents and stand up for teachers. I love my job but many times see children struggle because they receive no support from their parents. Even with extra help each day at school these children slowly fall farther and farther behind their peers as they progress through elementary school. A lot of these children have potential but by third or fourth grade they are tired of the struggle. It makes me very sad.

Anonymous said...

I work as a substitute teacher in Escambia County. Warrington Middle is one of the schools I rarely sub in because the kids are so atrociously behaved. When I did sub there several months ago, I was told by one of the school's regular employees (whom I won't name), "The 6th-graders last year were so bad, they ran off three teachers." This is the fault of the parents. They have taught their kids that school doesn't matter, and they don't have to respect either teachers or education. Then everybody acts like it's a big surprise when the students do terribly. The teachers cannot fix this kind of deeply-ingrained attitude in their students. Only the families can.

These families should be ashamed of themselves for stabbing their kids in the back this way. This "who cares" attitude is going to blight their prospects for success indefinitely because you can bet they'll act the same way on the job (if they can get one) that they act in school.

I also feel sorry for the good kids who want to learn who are stuck in WMS. They are wasting priceless years of their life not getting the education they need and deserve. It was a terrible school when I went there, and it's even worse now. The best solution would be to close it and let the students go elsewhere. The problem with that is, most of the middle schools in Escambia County stink, and the ones that don't are over capacity. So the kids would get a lousy education no matter where they went. It is absolutely shameful that middle school kids are mistreated in this way.

Jeff Bergosh said...

Kathy-I share your concern and sadness, I just wish we could wake up some of these parents in some of these schools-political will to do this seems absent so meanwhile some feel it is perfectly fine to blame teachers, administrators, or anyone else they could shake a finger at who will give them an audience. When we at the district are wrong, we accept the blame and attack the problem. When teachers do wrong, they are disciplined, If I do wrong I'm out of a job. But for the newspaper to call the employees a failure when in reality at WMS it always was a "community" problem--that was unacceptable. I say to a majority of these blamer, media rubes, non-participators, and others "look in the mirror first, you are the problem!" Nobody else, apparently, has the stomach to do this, but if we don't stand up for teachers when they face these accusations and attacks, we won't have anyone to teach in the Warrington Middle Schools of the country....Then what happens to these kids?

Mom said...

Jeff, when will our district stop the issue of trying to protect teachers? When will our district make families accountable for their children's behavior and academics and be required to abide by the Handbook? Until then, we will continue to hold hands and go in a circle. When parents are required to spend so many hours per year helping at their child's school, required to have their child at school everyday, required to enforce their child(ren) to be law abiding at school, required to make sure their child ingests Doctor-ordered medicine, required attendance of conferences, etc. or they are fined, inprisoned for abuse, student is dismissed from public school, then Public Education and Teachers can provide for the future of our students and there won't be an issue of trying to protect teachers. Sca The parent would home school or private school the student or have charges brought from law enforcement . Someone from our school district board must push to make parents responsible for their children!

Honolulu Hattie said...

The children whose parents show up and/or participate in school related events are the lucky ones who will have a much better chance succeeding in life.

Kim said...

This No Show phenomenon is age old. The same thing happened at a Parent/School Board conference that I coordinated 6 years ago for Hellen Caro(considered by many a country club school although that is debatable considering the number of free lunches they serve)parents in Perdido, that were concerned about their school choices. As Caro's PTA president at that time, I had been inundated with concerns from parents (especially parents of 5th graders) very worried about their children "having to go" to Bailey Middle School and then Escambia. I seriously could not go to the grocery store without someone stopping and telling me they did not want their child going to a school that required a police presence, had students bussed in from other areas, etc. :)
So a round table of school board administrators showed up at the meeting as well as the principals of both BMS and EHS to reassure them. Unfortunately, only 10 parents showed up and they were couples so really only 5 families out of the entire school population truly cared enough about school choices to show up.
I felt it took away from our community's credibility. The ole 90/10 rule. 90% of armchair cowboys rarely try to make a difference with actions - but they are really great at complaining about needed changes and how other people do their job.