Friday, June 11, 2010

skool's out 4 summer

This is for Fairfax County Schools. The district is allegedly a top district but I’m downgrading them severely for a complete lack of actual professionalism. Sure, I imagine some schools work hard, some teachers work hard, but the guidance from the district board is severely lacking. The required school year and number of days of instruction for Virginia are 180 or 990 hours. Virginia also participates in the Standards of Learning annual tests (SOLs) that, in and of themselves, are a joke. What happens after completion of the SOLs for the elementary kids is…nothing. The kids sit on their asses, watch movies; do nothing. G. finished his SOLs for sixth grade on June 2nd. The last day of school is June 25th. That’s 17 days of Fairfax schools providing zero schooling – or, if it makes it easier, 9.4% of the school year. I don’t even have a kid in FCPS and it still infuriates me. And for this year, you can add the hair pulling and gnashing of teeth that took place while these mental giants tried to figure out what to do about the two blizzards and the days of school missed. They were due to add something like 3 or 4 days to the year so they petitioned the Virginia DOE to not have to complete those make-up days that would have taken them to required 180. They were relieved of one day, I believe. Why even apply for the waiver? Why not just say “We aren’t going to actually do anything but have the kids watch Escape to Witch Mountain so let’s call it good.” This also isn’t a one-year thing; it’s been like this for all three years in FCPS. It’s really an embarrassment. And, to add to the jackassery, the schools spend at least two weeks simply prepping the kids for the SOLs.. And by prep, I mean simply having them come as close to memorizing the test portions/questions as they possibly can without actually cheating…in a court of law. Together, we’re talking five to six weeks of nothing. Well done, FCPS.

I was searching for some tickets to a show in D.C. – the Black Keys – and came across this mildly, or totally, unrelated ad for a keyboard on craigslist. I think it might be translucent. I think it might have 97 keys – I hate 95-key keyboards – and more importantly, since they didn’t include a picture, I think it has white lettering on black keys. Do I need a USB port for this to work?

I’ve finished my quarter at school and don’t start anew until Monday, July 12th. It was a good quarter and I’ve wrapped up American Regional Cuisine, Latin Cuisine, and Nutrition: a nice summer break with a week in Stowe before I turned my attention to Baking, Pastry, and Garde Manger for the spring. L. also finished at the New School with very good grades – I think she’ll miss the place quite a bit come the fall.

No comments: