Follow the Sunshine Act

Written Testimony of Ilene Poses to the BOE, 11/19/20

As a retired special education teacher and Special Ed. Liaison I looked with interest on the two items relating to special ed. students that were listed as Action Items Intermediate 1 and 2. As school board members your job is the oversight of schools and money allocations. The school district personnel can recommend an action but the public is another vehicle to help you make informed decisions. By omitting the complete detailed Action Item, which is required in the Sunshine Act the public is unable to provide helpful information which aids your decision making. Your job is “more than goals and guardrails”! It is oversight and not reliance on one source – Dr. Hite.

I have sat on IEP committees with lawyers when the district approved private school placement in the past. Some of the private schools have later been cited for violations and crimes against children. I have used the Easy IEP System. Having worked primarily in schools with a high number of bi-lingual students I am pleased that there will be a mechanism now for translating of IEPs. During the pandemic I also see the need for electronic signatures since IEP teams are not meeting in person.

However what is the point of still listing the completely ridiculous goal of: “Anchor Goal(s) Supported:  

  • Anchor Goal 1 – 100% of students will graduate ready for college or career   
  • Anchor Goal 2 – 100% of 8-year olds will read on or above grade level.”

Never will 100% of high school students be ready for college or career nor 100% of 8 year olds read on or above grade level. What is the point of having a goal which will never be met? Saying or writing it will NOT make it happen.

In conclusion in March 2020 Mallory Fix Lopez sang these lyrics I wrote:

Sing to “Follow the Drinking Gourd”
Follow the Sunshine Act
Follow the Sunshine Act
For the public is awaiting
to participate in meetings
So follow the Sunshine Act.

Technology – affords us Zoom
Helps peo-ple
express their views.
builds trust that’s a fact
So Follow the Sunshine Act.