Friday, December 08, 2006

Parents urged to act NOW

Parents of MCPS elementary and middle school kids can stop the latest Weast power grab if they act now.

They are being urged to "send an urgent message to the Board of Education before they cut parent input out of the policy development process."

Longtime Churchill Cluster coordinator Janis Sartucci urges parents to email a letter to the school board at, or write to the Montgomery County Board of Education at 850 Hungerford Drive, Rockville MD 20850, and send a copy to Superintendent Jerry Weast at the same address.

Here's what the local school reform leader says needs to be done: Address the letter to "Dear Board of Education Members." (BOE copies all correspondence to all its members.) BOE must receive the letters before December 12, 2006.

Then: "Follow up with a phone call: 301-279-3617. Unlike other electedbodies, the BOE does not normally get lots of phone calls from the public with opinions on issues. That's all the more reason to call - it will have impact! Just say something brief, like,

* "'I'm calling to say that the Board should not act on the Middle School Reform policy until AFTER the Middle School Reform Report has been received, and

* "'that accelerated and enriched [or gifted and talented] education should be maintained along with special education and on-grade level instruction.'"

Citizens should attend BOE meetings. Members of the public can sign up to testify, or simply show up to demonstrate community support. It worked on the Seven Locks/Kendale scam, and it can work this time. Janis says, "Visit the BOE website to learn about specific meeting agendas, at"

Also: "Attend MCCPTA meetings to learn more about all MCPS issues from the parent point-of-view. Visit the website at for a schedule of meetings.