Off to take a bullet for you

We know who you are!

We know who you are!

Headed off to the BOE meeting for grins and chuckles. I pass along a suggestion from a reader that audience members post their own observations here.

Have fun.
Update: they just voted to take any redistricting off the table for any racial balancing. Victory.
Update: McKersie: October 29th deadline for (unspecified number, so far) unverified students. On that day, students parents are called and warned, the next day, students will not be allowed in class, will be placed under care of DCSF and not allowed back. MK insists that BOE is toughening, not weakening it’s stand. I’m waiting for the numbers, and whether verification will be extended to the higher grades.
GEA president reading a speech. Is there no one left in the education world who can speak in her or his feet? Just sayin’
Moved to Public comment stage: first up, another speech reader who unfortunately hasn’t the ability to edit on the fly, so we’re hearing about redistricting, although that’s now irrelevant.
Three north street school mothers now clustered around mike while one reads a speech expressing concern about using North Street as the solution to facility under utilization.
She’s done , now followed by a line of North Street ladies, all clutching their own speeches. It’s going to be a long nite.
Relief! The nine other ladies sat down, speeches unread. I applaud their decision in favor of brevity.
Ben Bianco up – no written notes (god bless lawyers). Postpone your decision on redistricting until AFTER you have final verification numbers- you don’t even know how many students you’re dealing with. Don’t make a pre-election decision that your successors will have to deal with.
Divide and conquer – by announcing, more or less, that only North Street was in its crosshairs, the BOE has reduced the potential protestors to North Street School parents. No one else seems to be here tonight.
Remember when Nixon created the draft lottery and promised that only the first 100 numbers would be considered? 2/3 of us angry war protestors no longer had skin in the game so we went on our merry way and told the unlucky 1/3, ” have a nice war”. Macheavelian but effective.
Hell, just noticed that even Chris Vi Keyserling isn’t here – the board knows its business.
CCF up:where is the legal opinion on constitutionality of racial redistricting law? If we discovered and expelled 20 non-resident students in 2004-2005 , how are we at 100-400 now? How confident are you even of these numbers? And, finally, if we do have 100-400 kids in elementary school who shouldn’t be there, why not extend verification program to middle and high schools?
It’s an aside, but I’m amused at a couple of speakers from North Street who have Spanish names, a skin color that would make even the most ardent Democrat’s heart bleed, and who speak flawless English and display, to my ear, experience in the adventure of higher education. In short, typical Greenwich parents, but Hartford labels them minorities. By the way, they oppose redistricting and shuffling North Street students, just like everybody else.
Drew Marzullo is the only one of our three selectmen who’s here, as always.

Final note: only one speaker addressed the issue if economic freedom and the right

52 Comments

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52 responses to “Off to take a bullet for you

  1. Demmerkrat Patriot

    Enjoy your time with the Momma Bears™ from the assorted PTAs.

    Watch out …. they bite.

  2. greenwich dude

    i really hope they take redistricting off the table

    • Demmerkrat Patriot

      Forgetting the “racial balance” stuff, how would you eliminate the overcrowding on some schools and the underutilization in others?

  3. greenwich dude

    fyi

    the anderson plan is so ludicrously half-baked it’s shocking he has the guts to say it out loud

  4. Mickster

    Remember the mantra – one single ANNUAL residency verification process that every dept can use.

  5. Sump Pump

    Little surprised there aren’t more people here…

  6. greenwich dude

    a little confused about why everyone is being so polite to the BOE when they are so cavalier with our kids and property and town.

    • Former BOE memver

      They truly are a group who have no idea. The incoming board is even worse. PTA females. A backstabbing rat. And Berstein.

  7. Sump Pump

    Go Chris!

  8. greenwich dude

    So clear that the smart people are all in the audience and the dummies are up on stage. It’s amazing that the citizens have to show up and teach these idiots what is important in town.

    Guess what? Achievement, achievement, achievement… and a new classroom at new Lebanon.

  9. Riverside Chick

    Riverside property values breath a sigh of relief

    • Anonymous

      Is there anyone who really thought riverside would be re-distracted? Really?

    • Voter

      Not true!
      Magnet schools are coming your way. North Street and Parkway Schools are now facing real change. Sorry guys welcome to the real world. We are not going to feel sorry for you. You spoiled bunch of people.

      • hmmm

        Voter,

        get involved with you kids education and stop blaming the spoiled people whoever those may be…stop pretending that you need this tool and that tool or your kid will fail…your kid will fail because you sound angry and jealous and are claiming to be a victim…get over it and get to work it sounds like you are falling behind..

        • housecat

          Is it just me, or does Voter sound suspiciously like the Anony-troll that took over the BOE postings yesterday?

      • Um, ”spoiled” because most parents at these two schools worked hard in school and their professions to be able to buy homes in these areas? Mostly self made non-private school legacies at North Street and Parkway. Also great volunteers– not on the tennis courts all day.

  10. Walt

    Dude –
    Do you just make a statement and they just listen? Or do they respond? Did you show them the video of the girls gym teacher that we need them to recruit?
    Your Pal,
    Walt

    • Miki

      Audience members just spoke one after another but, if you stayed long enough, the BOE members spoke about racial imbalance, residency verification, New Lebanon expansion and north street/parkway as magnets and did touch on most points that the public raised in their comments/questions to the board. A bunch of people left after hearing that redistricting is off of the table. I stuck around to hear the BOE’s rationale for likely continuing to keep Oct. 10 as the next voting on the broad strokes of a plan–they estimate that 98 percent of residency will be verified or not by Oct 3, so the small fraction of unknowns shouldn’t impact the board’s ability to vote on a plan.

  11. Pint of Plain

    Ben is my hero – verify, then let’s discuss what we need to do. But, verify EVERYONE first. The only caveat I have – after reading about 2 families here on this blog who had to re verify – I will never trust the BOE numbers.
    Let Town Hall supervise this and create the database that all the Depts in a Town can access.

  12. Riverside resident

    Great speech tonight Chris! And you even got a very loud applause. Of course the Superintendent did not answer your question.

  13. Byram resident

    When Rogers got up and gave her PTA report I kept thinking to myself why does the BOE allow this to happen. She once again rambled on.

  14. RTC member

    Chris,
    I heard two parents say tonight that Superintendent is doing what he can to make sure Peter Sherr does not get elected. How is that ethical. Someone needs to ask him if that is true. The RTC leadership including Sue Sue Rogers, Libby Floren and Jim “looser” Campbell is in full anti Sherr mode. How does Rogers have time to attend all the BOE, PTA meetings?

  15. Watts

    Can you believe what Janet Freheit said about redistricting North Street? Wow! Blew me away!

  16. Miki

    Some interesting stats came out of the meeting. BOE states 20 percent of Ham Ave still unverified. Greenwich average is, as of this week, 13 percent. Superintendent clarified a statement that, only if the rate/regression of successful verification doesn’t change, would 100-130 students be unable to verify their residency prior to the deadline.

    One of the Peters asked how many students of color would need to leave Ham Ave for the school to be racially balanced. Answer 64 out or 32 out and 32 white students in. Stats for New Lebanon were also given, but I don’t remember them.

    Chris stuttered in asking his questions but at least he got them out. The superintendent did indirectly answer Chris’ question regarding verification of middle and high school students by stating that the process of verification takes awhile and could be done for next year but should not be on the table for this school year. This remark came immediately after a Peter’s apology that this K-5 verification process will now stretch to the end of October. This delay was explained as being necessitated by the schools’ need to have a strong legal foot to stand on (2 official letters with 2 weeks of notice given between them, and an opportunity for the unverified student/guardian of to have a hearing), given possible legal challenges, once the drastic measure of removal from school has taken place.

    • hmmm

      what legal challenge once the removal occurs? if you don’t live in town you can’t use our schools…in fact I don’t think you could use Rye schools if you live in Greenwich…again what legal challenge???

      • Anony

        Legal challenge is if they make a mistake and take a Greenwich kid out who should be there, whose parents don’t speak English, work 2-3 jobs, can’t get their landlord to provide a copy of the lease, etc.

  17. TownieGirl

    Live near Greenwich? You can’t use our beach, but feel free to send your kids to our schools. We’ll say we’ll check your address but then we’ll keep extending the deadline until your kid graduates…

    • You’re absolutely correct, TownieGirl. Why is it more difficult for legitimate town residents to prove their beach card-worthiness than for out of town parents to produce fake residency ”documentation”? I honestly do not think the BOE will vigorously pursue out of district students because of their fear of charges of racism and discrimination against renters.

  18. Anonymous

    The problem lies in not proving students live here but proving they live somewhere else.
    Example –
    Cousin Johnny was living down the street in an apartment with his 2 kids up until last year when he got laid off and evicted. He’s now sleeping on your couch and the kids are bunking with your kid in his room. You don’t want your landlord to know that Johnny and his kids are living there full time so you can’t get a lease or doc from your landlord. What does Johnny do? He should find his own place but in the meantime, some municipality is legally responsible for educating his kids. In absence of proving he lives somewhere else, Greenwich is responsible. A. he is technically living here and B. his last documented address is in Greenwich so even if he is “homeless” as far as a legal address, the municipality where he last lived prior to becoming “homeless” is responsible for educating his children.

    The same goes for all the families renting someone’s basement, attic or extra room on a month to month, for cash basis. They may not be able to come up with documents like leases or utility bills that prove residency but we can’t prove they live in another town either and the court would almost definitely say that Greenwich is responsible for educating the children until permanent, legal housing can be obtained.

    My bet – at the end of November, we will probably have found a 3 or 4 Stamford families and 3 or 4 NY families in our schools. Yes, they should be removed and I do support annual verification like lots of other states do, but their removal will have NO impact on space issues or racial percentages.

    • Riverslide

      I think you are completely right. It must be very difficult to kick out someone who takes basic precautions not to be caught “living” in another town.

      I guess you’d video the kids repeatedly being dropped off by a car registered to their guardians with a NY address, and you’d also determine the parents have NY drivers licenses. But really, to defeat that, the parents just need that small beachhead in Greenwich, a hand-shake-based mailing address. They really don’t need a lease or utiillty bills, when push comes to shove, i.e. when eviction time comes.

    • Sump Pump

      Is it actually the town’s burden to prove that a non-resident lives somewhere else. If someone isn’t legally a resident of Greenwich, they should not be entitled to our school system. Why does it matter where they do actually live?

  19. Tired of the nonsense

    They asked the state, not our lawyers, for an answer. They are waiting for it now.
    Even if it comes back that they are unique, we still have overcrowding at New Leb. If every single unverified student leaves, we will still have overcrowding. Its been overcrowded for years with the stage and closets being used for small group and one to one instruction. We get unique status and the 80% reimbursement for expansion/remodeling from the state goes bye bye so then we have a whole new problem to solve.

    • hmmm

      Take the money from MISA problem solved…next question

    • greenITCH

      catch up … legal opinion on the constitutionality of Connecticut’s racial balance law was ordered June 26th , Dr MC Kersie / Moriatty have invoked client – attorney privileges not to divulge the findings

      • There can be no attorney client privilege if McKersie has access to the material, or that’s one (strong) view of the privilege. The clint is the BOE – McKersie is a mere employee. By giving him the work product of its attorney, there’s a decent argument to be made that the BOE waived the privilege.

    • Anonymous

      Tired of the Nonsense—well I certainly didn’t hear from your complaints at all the public debates on MISA funding vs the need for Lebanon to get funds for expansion. Where was the New Lebanon PTA, parents, etc? Oh, that’s right….your PTA president, Mr. Bocchino, was championing MISA. Life is about choices, babe, and your leadership made their choice.

  20. greenITCH

    well for starters I don’t disagree that we may end up with only a handful of students that are actually not residents . however your scenarios are way off … in scenario one .. I mean ok .. how many cases of ” homelessness ” do you think exist … one ? two ? personally I am not in favor of searching out these people to try and resolve any fraudulent use of our towns resources . a person on this blog extensively detailed that it is not permitted within town code to ” rent a room ” . Additionally it wont be the town that has to verify a persons residence , that family will have to come forth with the proper documentation . I personally am not for any sort of witch hunt looking for one ” down and out” family .. however if it is a habitual practice as many have claimed and adding to our problems with regard to utilization of school resources , it would appear to me that it is not a very difficult task to get All people to verify residency on a yearly basis …. well not difficult for any half wit to organize .. our town is another story

  21. Greenwich Gal

    What did Janet Freheit say about redistriciting North Street?

  22. Byram

    Hey Anon, really you are going to go after Mike Bocchino? You are brave Marianna.