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IB Back on School Board's Agenda

Take a look at what the school board has on its agenda Feb. 13, 2012.

The meeting  tonight at .

The entire agenda (with one exhibit) is attached to this post in the form of a .pdfs.

The most popular items on the agenda are arguable the ones focused on the International Baccalaureate Program.

The program has met with strong resistance from those who say it wastes money that could be used in other professional development areas or disagree with the program's international aspects.

Just last month at the Jan. 22 meeting the  to "take the steps necessary to obtain International Baccalaureate World School status for  and not pursue such status at any other school in the district at this time."

Superintendent Russ Jones said in an interview with Stow Patch in January that a recommendation about the program would show up again on the board's agenda "soon."

He said the rejection of his recommendation in January was about "semantics" and "not content."

Here's tonight's recommendations from Jones:

Authorization for Indian Trail 

  • "I WISH TO RECOMMEND that the Board of Education permit the superintendent to seek authorization from the International Baccalaureate Organization for Indian Trail Elementary School." 

Authorization for Other Schools in the District

  • "I WISH TO RECOMMEND that the Board of Education not permit the superintendent to seek authorization from the International Baccalaureate Organization for any other school in the district other than Indian Trail, unless formally approved by the Board."

For coverage of the meeting, check Stow Patch.

Ed Kent February 13, 2012 at 09:22 PM
What board member in their right mind, no matter which way they lean on IB, would vote for the second authorization which just gives away the responsibilities of the board to make decisions, to the administration. It's like Congress authorizing the president to make all decisions regarding budgets and laws so they don't have to vote anymore.
Karen Gonidakis February 13, 2012 at 09:26 PM
IB MORATORIUM NOW!!!!!!!!!!! A "NO" means NO!!! 2006 BoE said NO the Teachers Union Executive Board said NO Riverview, Fishcreek and IT teachers said NO Many parents and citizens continue to say NO The BoE said NO a couple weeks ago. NO MEANS NO
Kevin Galioto February 13, 2012 at 09:34 PM
Why can't they just be forward? If you have nothing to hide, put it out there. The wording used is part of the problem we had at the last meeting. So, here we go again!
Jan Hightower-Woods February 13, 2012 at 09:42 PM
NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!
James Thomas February 13, 2012 at 10:46 PM
And Again, and Again, and ........ This must end. If it has to be with Dr. Jones' exit so be it.
Tom Mcfalls February 14, 2012 at 01:36 AM
Excellent meeting tonite. The kids were great. I just loved way they were able to put the different facets of what they learned during the year. IB seems to be working well.
Tom Mcfalls February 14, 2012 at 01:50 AM
No sure why you can't move on. It sounded like the crowd was in favor of IB tonite.
Ed Kent February 14, 2012 at 02:18 AM
Did any parents of actual kids from that school get a chance to speak against IB like they did last time at the high school, or were the programmed, er I mean prepared IB promotion lines prepared for certain students executed well for those in attendance. I'm sure a lot of preparation went into the home field display. Were the IB teachers lined up behind the public like they were at the last meeting. That felt a bit like party officials in certain countries watching you. Any of you been to a communist country you'll know what I'm talking about. Not that that is what's going on here. Surely, its unintentional and certain ones are there to just show their support behind what their boss wants.
Amanda Harnocz February 14, 2012 at 02:19 AM
Hey everyone, both IB recommendations passed. I'm feeling under the weather ... I'd like to have the story up in the morning, but it will have to wait until the afternoon. Thanks for understanding ... achoo!
Ed Kent February 14, 2012 at 02:28 AM
get well Amanda. At least the district won't be spending money it doesn't have on spreading the extra program to the other schools and at least parents can transfer their child to another non-Eu school, oh wait they can't because they're told there's no room and no bussing. oh well, maybe some of them will just figure its only a few years and their child will move onto middle school and be out of there. If we hear the treasurer suggesting the IB issue is not over then we'll know there's plenty of money for the district and no need to threaten removing bussing again when another levy comes up.
Amanda Harnocz February 14, 2012 at 02:44 AM
Thanks Ed. I have some comments from board members Fred Bonacci and Rod Armstrong. Anxious to put it together for all of you. Please feel free to continue to use this stream for conversation until the new story is up tomorrow afternoon.
pamela wind February 14, 2012 at 03:07 AM
I'm a bit late to this game... what exactly are the objections to the IB program? Amanda, if you've already reported on them, link me up! If not, I'd love to see a piece explaining the controversy (when you're feeling better).
Julie Kupper February 14, 2012 at 03:11 AM
The IB program has many benefits. Has any one ever spoke to the public from the IB program to explain the benefits? I know is can be costly but it can also be rewarding and it provides a strong educational foundation for the students who go through the program. It also opens up doors for the students that they may never of had before. I am wondering if the approach Stow schools is taking is the right approach to implement the program. Maybe there should be more dialog with public and the district should find other ways of funding for example grants. Firestone high school has had a successful program implements for many years maybe their approach could be looked at.
Ed Kent February 14, 2012 at 01:58 PM
Julie, go ahead and share with us the benefits and which of those benefits that our students can't get through existing teaching here in Stow. I keep hearing that IB can help students learn to be better international business people, but no one seems to be able to prove that our students aren't already learning about other cultures and world economics.
FrankRizzo February 14, 2012 at 02:16 PM
http://alumni.sehs.net/?page=ib
Ed Kent February 14, 2012 at 04:05 PM
Something I found interesting on that site: "And there is a major community service component to the IB Diploma, requiring a minimum150-hour commitment over 18 consecutive months during the 11th and 12th grades." Sounds good and again many would say that could certainly be required without paying for the IB program to expand it to high school. In fact, don't some students do community service now and without paying for an additional IB program? What students might think about the 150 hour community service requirement when some students in our city have to work a part time job is the question. We're not a private school like St. Andrews (see link) with students coming from families that have more money than some of our students in public school. What works for some schools doesn't always work for all especially when it comes to finances. I seem to recall our treasurer saying even with the new levy that passed there's still problems and talk of needing additional money. The board certainly used wisdom in making sure IB will not go forward in this district to the other schools without their approval.
Tom Mcfalls February 14, 2012 at 05:55 PM
ed I think you are mistaken. It has been the same people that have been complaining from the beginning. Only one said she had a child at that school. Wonder what the others are so upset about. Maybe because their kids did not get the opportunity that IT kids are getting. I actually think that you step pretty low to down play the fine program that kids put on. They did an excellent job. Also the communist comment is rather silly. The teachers enthusiasm was genuine. Maybe they feel like the program is working and they are making an impact. That is why they went into the profession. Watching the children tie the different areas of learning has to be tremendously gratifying. To bad some of you nay say'ers have to try ruin it for them and the kids.
Tom Mcfalls February 14, 2012 at 05:57 PM
What is wrong with community service? Does it teach respect and pride in your community? isn't that what the Boy Scouts do? Or do you have an issue with the boy scouts too? I think for the kids that could participate it would be great.
Ed Kent February 14, 2012 at 07:04 PM
I also think its great and I participated in community service when I was in school and did it without the district having to pay a third party like IB. What's wrong with that? Do we need IB to teach our students to participate in community service? I don't think so.
Ed Kent February 14, 2012 at 07:14 PM
Actually I was referring to the meeting at the high school and the parents who spoke out there including a father who has daughters in that school. He doesn't see the benefits of IB are greater than what they had before at that school, but sees an opposite effect happening. I'm glad the meeting you refer to did not seem like the other one I was at where there was a line of them standing behind the public. Like I said, I don't believe it was intentional even in that previous meeting to seem imposing to the parents who were seated. I also question the nay sayers who constantly belittle our education system and think it isn't helping students and that we need a European way, which they think is better. I still haven't seen any proof studies which reveal spending additional funds on IB produces better students and better schools than what our teachers' current capabilities and futher education provides.
FrankRizzo February 14, 2012 at 09:41 PM
Donny, you've got a lot of issues......just providing information to the readers. Today, I was speaking with a co-worker about IB and the Stow school disctrict, he shared with me that his son attends St. Ed's, been there three years and see's a value to the program.
Tom Mcfalls February 14, 2012 at 11:39 PM
Ed you miss the point. The people nay sayers of which you speak are not belittling our education system. Actually to the contrary they want to make the system better. I like many others believe IB and AP can co-exist.
Tom Mcfalls February 14, 2012 at 11:40 PM
Ed I believe that IB is a little more than just community service.
Mike Barnes February 15, 2012 at 10:20 PM
Personally -- I thought it was terrific seeing so many positive people turnout for Mondays board meeting. I hope we are seeing a trend of seeing new faces with a positiuve voice about our schools and our community.
Katie Bell April 08, 2012 at 01:43 PM
Jones presented the alleged "benefits" of IB at a meeting at Echo Hills in September, 2011. Questions were "selected" to receive a response. All of Ms. Kupper's CLAIMS of IB "benefits" are UNPROVEN HEARSAY! SMF doesn't want "more dialogue" because it will have to acknowledge that the Negatives outweigh the Positives when it comes to IB. It is unfair and tyrannical of SMF to shove a SCHOOLWIDE PROGRAM down the throats of the taxpayers when the same district forces parents to PAY TO PLAY. DISTRICTWIDE IB MORATORIUM NOW!
Jane Dewey April 08, 2012 at 08:43 PM
You need to stack the School Board with ANTI-IB residents then FIRE the Administrator! Clearly he's NOT listening to the will of the voters!
Jack Kelly April 08, 2012 at 11:35 PM
Yeah -- let's rehash a story about a meeting that took place TWO months ago! Should we send you a reminder around Flag Day to comment on an Easter egg hunt story?
Kelly Mann April 09, 2012 at 03:57 AM
Wish I could see the value to the program. It detracts from learning academics and focuses instead on being global citizen. This prepares us for college how exactly? I am fed up with PYP and would rather see my kids get a quality education somewhere that does not allow a Swiss program to tell teachers how to run their classrooms.
Katie Bell April 09, 2012 at 12:35 PM
@Jack Kelly, Why not? Seems to me SMF can arbitrarily re-vote a motion if Jones doesn't like the outcome of the vote. Time for THE PEOPLE to demand a vote on a motion which calls for a DISTRICTWIDE MORATORIUM on IB! Stop the games with the ARRA money and forcing an ideology on a public school system. What was wrong with "Excellent" as a rating for SMF schools? Why ruin a good thing?
Jack Kelly April 09, 2012 at 02:45 PM
What does this have to do with my comment? Oh, nothing. Which pretty much sums up what the majority of you "regular whiners" actually know (in regards to what you're talking about) anytime there's an opportunity to b*tch and moan about district. Again, this meeting was TWO FREAKING MONTHS AGO!!! It's right there at the top. Or are some of you illiterate, too?

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