Dick Blumenthal: Public education, like taxes, are for the little people

Stolen ValorThe (completely erroneous) interpretation of the Supreme Court decision in Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No. 1, 551 U.S. 701 (2007),   barring school redistricting on account of race, an interpretation being used by our school board to justify its plans to bus children around town, was provided by local resident Dick Blumenthal while he was Democrat Attorney General. You’ll hardly be surprised that Mr. Blumenthal sends his own children to private school: in fact, one of his daughters was this year’s valedictorian at Greenwich Academy. That’s a credit to her, although it is not unfair to speculate how she’d have performed at Hamilton Avenue, but certainly not any tribute to her duplicitous, hypocritical father.

Blumenthal is a man who lied about serving in Viet Nam, and even about such a trivial thing as being a member of the Harvard varsity swim team. We should destroy entire neighborhoods based on what he says is the true holding of the Parents Involved case? Better that our board sends him a speedo and a Viet Nam Veterans cap, thanks him for his advice, and forgets that he ever intruded on this matter.

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26 responses to “Dick Blumenthal: Public education, like taxes, are for the little people

  1. The New Normal

    if $ were not an issue, why wouldn’t a parent send their kids to private schools (instead of dealing with the public school mess that is generating a record-setting pace for comments on this blog)? I cannot think of a single reason

    • Alas, money is an issue, as is admission. At $40,000 per student, per year, tuition, and the near impossibility of getting into one of our exclusive private schools unless you’re the privileged spawn of a hedgie, there’s no way an average family can send three kids to, say, Brunswick.
      Home schooling, especially if several families join together.

      • The New Normal

        I would guess home schooling might be better than having to haul your kids from Riverside to far west Greenwich

        convenient though if you need to buy a car or stop off to get some authentic ethnic food

  2. Anonymous

    show me a well adjusted, what passes for ‘normal’ home schooled child in greenwich

  3. Anonymous

    Add Pelosi, Rahm Emmanuel, Obama, Clinton etc etc ….liberals love to invoke laws for the “little people” but not for themselves.

  4. edgewater

    the biggest thing [imo] to bear in mind re busing is that there is no study, anywhere, that demonstrated a positive academic result from busing. none. so if it’s not good for the kids, why do it? it’s all about manipulating the pawns.

  5. FRF

    Does this have anything to do with the envy of riverside/og home price appreciation compared to those who live to the west and north?
    All those former geniuses living on parsonage, zaccheus mead, and dunwoode want their revenge!

  6. Anonymous

    My children were in private school before we moved to Greenwich and enrolled them in public grammar schools. The differences are glaring in many ways — small class size, math & reading specialists, small group learning, science labs, laptops for every child — do not exist in public school. However, children can receive an excellent education without those perks. And the parents in the Greenwich public school community are amazing — involved, caring, well-educated. However, too many parents view the system as impersonal, bureaucratic and impossible to change – perhaps correctly. My personal frustration with the public school experience at the grade school level stems from it’s low standards; the bureaucracy that prevents quick & creative solutions; the lack of accountability; the lack of regular teacher/administration contact with parents. The schools can implement changes that do not break the bank. Attitude changes by administration would be a good start — be more accountable to parents and speak to classes as a group in open Q&A forums often (which is NEVER done). Simple changes like capping class sizes at 20 would have seismic effects. Allowing the PTAs to raise more money for their own schools is another obvious approach; the socialist cap on fundraising so all schools are limited to raising the same amount is pure nonsense. Less bureaucracy, more direct accountability.

  7. Anonymous

    What a utopia you have described. The unions would never ever allow such creativity, flexibiilty, and accountability. Sad but true.

    • Anonymous

      I am no fan of unions, but I don’t see teachers or the union as the seminal problem in Greenwich. In fact, the teachers I have encountered have been devoted and engaged, even when taxed with large classes. The problem is that the school system is so huge and centralized. Nothing can get fixed locally. Nothing can get done swiftly. No school administration is directly accountable. Each neighborhood, grammar school and parent body is different with different needs. Each require local, personal, targeted solutions. That’s neither good nor bad, it’s a simple fact. Principals can’t/don’t fix problems at the local level and no one is directly accountable to the children and parents they see every day. Crummy teacher? Parents told the BOE is handling it and not offering details. Over-crowed classrooms? BOE won’t lower class caps. Cruddy math curriculum? BOE might study issue after a decade of complaint. Riverside PTA can raise 200k but New Lebanon PTA can only raise 75k? BOE caps all fundraising to lowest common denominator to keep it “fair,” without thinking of a more clever solution. Gross food at lunch? BOE will launch a food test program in one school and pass along data next year to plan for the following year. Snow in back country but rain in Cos Cob? BOE cancels school district wide. Everything is kicked upstairs to be dealt by the Great Wizard of Oz. And since OZ is pestered with varied requests by a differing parent-bodies, we come across collectively as PIA to be “dealt” with and handled, not concerned parents who deserve direct answers and swift action on valid local concerns. This school system has produced the end result “The Road To Serfdom” warns of.

      • NewsJunkie

        Don’t know where your children are in the school system, anonymous, but the unions do have a profound effect on the quality of the teacher. A certain 7th grade teacher at EMS has bullied her students, failed to give feedback, and has been proven to be incompetent for the job, yet despite years of complaints to school administrators, she keeps her job.

      • Inquiring MInd

        I wholeheartedly agree. The system is unwieldy. We have had excellent teachers at NM, ISD, and EMS. Unfortunately, some of what you describe regarding the administration is everywhere- talk to parents/teachers in nearby communities- it is basically the same. However, the teachers in Greenwich are continually being asked to take on more initiatives, serve on more committees, etc. It’s absurd! The different school communities in town make for very different needs as well. We’d be better off if each middle school and its feeder elementary schools could operate as their own district. I don’t mean add more layers of administration. I mean much more localized control

  8. Riverslide

    The line “capping class sizes at 20 would have seismic effects” is so over-the-top, considering there is no proof such a cap would have any effect, that it undermines your whole write-up.

    • Just_looking

      I am quite certain that class size has a much higher correlation to improved education than racial balance or diversity.

    • Anonymous

      Could not disagree more. Kids needs to be pushed and challenged based upon their individual abilities (and I do not mean coddled, I mean pushed). The bigger the group, the less likely that happens. ALP kids get pulled out and taught in small groups. So do kids with LD. The remaining 90-95% get large group instruction with next to zero one-on-one on a regular basis. They don’t even get classes or lessons based upon ability. The reading abilities are so varied in my older child’s class, they no longer read the same book but have free choice reading for 30 minutes where the teacher maybe chats with 5 or 6 kids about their individual books. Add in a few kids with behavioral problems and the teachers have zero time for small group instruction. I don’t blame the teachers. It’s logistically impossible when classes hit 25. My source? Four kids in four grades and conversations year after year with taxed and overwhelmed teachers. Your child falling behind in a subject? Child bored because classwork not challenging him? Teacher will apologize, promise to pay closer attention, but will openly tell you to hire a tutor because she/he cannot spend enough time on it in the classroom.

  9. I asked this elsewhere but have any of you been following the Common Core education plan coming down the pike…..talk about losing local control of what and when your child learns.anything….

    • Martha

      The common core is certainly rotten. AJ can probably provide a good conspiracy theory. If one googles “common core evil” you will get all sorts of interesting hits, but Glen Beck has some good clips from his show on you tube about it. Reading all this today makes me want to sell the house me go live on a boat offshore somewhere!

  10. You apparently didn’t notice that Senator B’s daughter was GA’s valedictorian last year; the linked article is a year old.

    • You mean she was forced to repeat her senior year? How sad.
      The date’s irrelevant to the point: Mr. “Bus Your Children Because It’s the Law” sends his own children to private school- driven there by their chauffeur, probably.

  11. OG17

    Imagine CT politicians ignoring a Supreme Court ruling favoring abortion rights….. Liberals choose to ignore laws they don’t agree with like the pesky 2nd & 10 Amendments. In CT they ignore gun rights in the state constitution but can’t wait to give illegals driver’s licenses! The Parent Involved case couldn’t be more cut & dry, what would MLK think of all the racial quotas today!