Thursday, August 21, 2008

How is Sebring’s raise not payment for failure?

Yesterday we commented on the serious failings that are now manifestly evidenced by the Des Moines public schools. The most critical was the appearance of every DM high school but East and over half of the junior highs were on the federal watch list for substandard performance.

One would have thought that such clear evidence of failure would have at least caused a brief period of retrenchment-promises of improvement accompanied by some token gesture of concern.

One would have thought wrong. On the very same day the public learned of this, the latest, system wide failure the current Des Moines School Board voted to give Superintendent Dr. Nancy Sebring a raise of approximately $15,000.00. We assume, but haven’t been able to confirm, that the administrators in every one of those failing schools also received substantial raises this year.

We out in the real world call that payment for failure. Maybe such arrogant and irresponsible budget practices as rewarding failure is the reason that the liberal education establishment screams for ever more unlimited spending at a time when educational cost rise three times faster than inflation and consumes twice the state resources as everything else combined.

Will the voters of Des Moines ratify this swindle in September?


Anonymous said...

Did Connie Boesen vote for the raise?

Anonymous said...

What is the Union's response to the results?

How does the UNION feel about MANGEMENT getting this huge of a raise for failure?

Inspired, I'll bet.

Anonymous said...

Yes, inspired to fail. Why buy the cow when you can milk it for free?

Why teach when you don't really have to?

Why achieve when failure is easier and you get a raise to boot?

Anonymous said...

Remember that a portion of all public school teachers' wages end up in Democrat coffers. That is what really drives the increase in the size of government.

And taxpayers are such schmucks they actually believe that if we only throw more money at education it will improve. It won't, it will only help elect more Democrats.

Anonymous said...

And another portion of teacher wages end up in Republican coffers. Close to half of the members of the Iowa State Education Association are Republicans.

Anonymous said...

Hey 9:20 There may be Republicans but what percentage of the forced PAC money do you think does to Republicans? The ISEA brags about mortgaging their HQ building to give the Democrats the majority. Teacher wages may go to some Republicans but it doesn't go through the union to get there.

Ken asks "Has Obama done anything?" said...

Unions give money to Democrats and not Republicans.

"That's a fact, Jack!" - Stripes

vlad the impaler said...


ISEA is a public employee goonion. Who are you unionized against?

Anonymous said...

Exactly Mr. Impaled. Exactly. Just who is the enemy which the union must fight?

Isn't is supposed to be all about the children?

Anonymous said...

Obama picked Co-Kaine. Is that a freudian nostalgic nod to Obamas cocaine years?

Eric Clapton wants to know

Ken asks Obama about Tony Rezko's 300K "gift" said...

Liberals scream, "it is for the children" to justify every tax and spend scheme but it turns out it is about really “Democratic Party kickbacks” as they perpetually enrich themselves at the expense of the children they purport to support. When will DSM say enough to ever increasing costs ($13,000 per student and probably a lot once we factor in dropouts) when successful districts do it for much less? When will DSM kick out corrupt Democratic Party hack jobs and their never-ending profiteering schemes?

christine said...

Do you folks have children in the DMPS? or are you just here to criticize?

I know for sure how hard my 3 children's teachers work. I volunteer in their schools at large and in their classrooms. There are many many children who do not have parental/family support for schooling.

One of the faults of NCLB is that it does not track individual students but schools instead. DMPS has many transient students who test at one school in the beginning of the year and at another school at the end of the year. Yet each school is supposed to have improved their test scores.

Also, it is statistically impossible to have 75% of children score about the 50th percentile on ITBS.

Anonymous said...

The problem is that the union and the administration run the school board for their own benefit rather than for the benefit of the children who attend the schools. They are spending more than ever in history, adjusted for inflation, and achieving less. Drop out rates average 40% and the students are falling farther behind their international competition every year. Meanwhile the farthest left parts of society are mandating their agenda be promoted to children and political correctness is the order of the day.

Schools are being run so as not to offend the ACLU, atheists and gay activists, not to prepare students to be good citizens or productive adults and they are charging taxpayers over $12,000 a year per kid to maleducate the next generation.

There is no end to the money they will spend if we give it to them. Student teacher ratios have fallen greatly in the last 30 years and spending per student has doubled in real terms. Why has achievement fallen?

Before you go too far out on a limb defending the educational establishment you may want to check out the statistics at:

christine said...

Anon @ 12:52,
I'm not interested in defending the educational establishment. I'm just pointing out that many/most *teachers* work very hard in their classrooms, despite the administrations at all levels from the squabbling school board to the Iowa legislators, right up the US Congress and President. Everyone wants to put their hand in and demand more from teachers who are struggling to fit in all that's necessary. I agree with many of your statements, especially "there is no end to the money they will spend if we give it to them."

Also, I wanted to inject some realism into this "conversation" in which so many comments are just political posturing and uneducated opinions.

Ken asks Obama about his $300K Rezko kickback said...

I see anon 12:52 beat me to the punch but since I did the research on another website here goes....


The ITBS has a state average representing the statistical mean and the range is not 0 to 100.

Ankeny averaged 85% for reading (state average 72%) and 90% for math (state average 78%). Yet, Callahan in DSM averaged only 56% for reading and 54% for math.

Besides administration mismanagement, DSM schools fail because the students come from broken homes often headed by mothers. Richer communities tend to have more stable families with positive and lasting father figure relationships, which is why their children stay in school and do better on the ITBS.

Ken asks Obama about his $300K Rezko kickback said...

Nobody on this website or from the Republican Party is accusing teachers of doing anything less than their jobs. Our complaint is not with teachers! Our complaint is with liberal administration, social engineering, and mismangement of financial resources to include graft.

On a side note, broken homes lacking stable fathers probably contributes to problems in DSM. I lay that one on Liberals a little more than Conservatives but not by much.

christine said...

Ken who hates Obama,

Starting backwards, you're right in your last paragraph. My children go to Callanan and the numbers on paper don't begin to show the vastly wide variety of family situations, languages, races, and incomes. When you average those kinds of numbers Callanan looks low but in reality there is a significant high as well as a significant low plus a bunch in the middle. Ankeny has a higher average, but more importantly, the large majority of their students probably fall close to that average, making the teachers' jobs clearly defined: get the students from point A to point B through the course of a year. Callanan's (and DMPS) students vary so widely that teachers have to cater to a multitude of abilities, some students already know B, some students don't know A yet and some are further behind than that. But they all still are expected to get to B.

Countries like China look like they beat the US in math and science because they educate only their most capable. The US educates ALL its children and counts ALL their test scores and somehow even those children who are incapable of proficiency are included in the school's average numbers.

Secondly, on your first website listed, for Ankeny's school, it states:
"The ITBS is a norm-referenced test, which means it measures how well students in Iowa score in comparison to their peers nationwide. Students who score at the 40th percentile are considered proficient.
"The goal is for all students to score at or above the proficient level."

This goal is flawed--if 100 students take a test, 60 will be above the 40th percentile and 40 will be at or below. That's what percentiles mean. Ankeny can show 76 and 82% proficiency (BTW, their numbers went down) because they are comparing to NATIONAL numbers. But nationally, 75% of students cannot score above the 40th percentile. This just shows that Iowa is scoring higher on their own test. Not all states use ITBS.

Ken asks Obama about his $300K Rezko kickback said...

The ITBS is not a perfect test but it demonstrate differences between schools that take the test and DSM schools fail compared to Ankeny and most or the state (it is mandatory for all Iowa schools). DSM schools fail despite spending more and I defy anyone to explain that monstrosity they call a budget because it is almost undecipherable. DSM should use the format used by Ankeny or any number of other successful school districts but they do not because they want to hide how they mismanage money. Mismanagement thrives in chaos as do people with nefarious motives.

DSM schools face family, language, racial, and income challenges but the real blame is the way they waste money and resources. Accountability is the only solution to the problem and since Democrats control practically every large city why cannot they get their hands out of the cookie jar long enough to educate society’s children? I think Vlad had it part right when he wrote these children are not meant to succeed. Funny, in Republican controlled towns these problems, especially graft and mismanagement, do not occur very often. Why is that? Perhaps it is because Democrats focus on blame why trying to enrich themselves at taxpayer expense while Republicans focus on realistic solutions while holding themselves to higher standards of accountability?

Ken asks Obama about his $300K Rezko kickback said...

As for Obama, you know I do not hate him but I suspect he hates me because I am white, truthful, do not attend a racist church, and served my country. In addition, whenever I served in a leadership position I achieved something - I was not known as a "present only" sort of guy. Moreover, my record exists (including medical) and I can prove I was born in this country. I have never consorted with known communists or had extensive/lucrative business dealings with convicted swindlers. Neither have I spent time with anyone known for anti-American terrorist (murderer) activities. Only Obama would pal around with the likes of William Ayers! Finally, I can answer a question without a teleprompter and I know that really ticks him off.

Ken asks Obama about his $300K Rezko kickback said...

One other difference, I would try to save a baby hanging on to life after a botched abortion. I would not focus on the wishes of the mother when she waited until the end of the third trimester to kill her unborn child. My focus would be on the fact a baby survived and once born deserves life. Even NARAL did not take Obama's extreme position.

See, unlike Obama, my church taught that God values children and killing them contradicts everything I read in the Bible. My church did not use God as a foil for anti-white racism and my pastor lived in a modest house rather than a 1.4 million dollar mansion. It is safe to say, I have many differences with Obama and I pray our country rejects him like the racist, empty suit, Jesus wannabe that he really is before it is too late.

RF said...


You deserve a cookie or something for following all the right-wing internet chatter about the horrible anti-Christ Obama. Your posts provide the best spot online to gather all those ramblings in one succinct piece. Once again, you prove Obama’s point about right-wing nuts trying to scare people to not vote for him.

Anonymous said...

Facts are scary and Ken left missteps on Ntl defense and Obama's plan to air up tires instead of drilling.

Anonymous said...

The leadership of the Iowa delegation to the RNC convention should think about the actions you have taken today.

Between now and November 4th we elect Republicans.

On the 5th of November you and your supporters will be hung in the court of public opinion like the traitorous bastards you are.

Anonymous said...

Since this is about the DMPS, nothing is as scary as Narcisse.

Anonymous said...

anon 10:59

I'm not sure I would buy the excuses and charges of people trying to cover their own asses.

Ken asks Obama about his $300K Rezko kickback said...


Going after the guy calling for open records by exposing a very low-level concern is simply misdirection. Jon Narcisse may have crossed a line on this one, it really remains to be seen, but in the land of things, it is quite small.

I work in procurement and this is not a capital case nor does it involve the type of money major libs are accused of taking. If it was a mistake or bad judgment I am sure, it will come out. However, going over by a couple hundred dollars is small potatoes and not a smoking gun.

Anonymous said...

Well Ken I'd say it's safe to say you've finally come around to sharing most of the rest of the White world's thoughts about Niggers like Obama and Wright.

You are one sick, delusional bastard, Ken. Once and for all will you use the direct line number you have to Mark Klein, M.D.? You know, the guy who was your first choice for President. The first guy so fervently endorsed by Ken, Mark Klein, M.D. Call him before it's too late, Ken. Noticed how even Sporer doesn't endorse your bullshit anymore, Ken?

Ken asks Obama about his $300K Rezko kickback said...

I see the racist guy is back, just when we thought he might have buzzed way to spare us his vile ramblings.

FYI - TRS is not commenting/endorsing anyone lately. TFS makes his points with his column.

Speaking of TFS, I hope he removes your vile post because your consistent denigration of African Americans does not deserve a platform to spread. Grow up and respect people for more than their skin color.