I'd like to respond directly to DMD's comment on my post about Johnston. Yes I think a lot of the responsibility rests with the district (I never blamed the teachers and I still don't, I think the district abandoned them too.) I am the daughter, granddaughter, sister-in-law, niece, and friend of teachers. I think I have a pretty good grasp on the shit they have to go through. The reason I blame the district is because they did not do anything to keep the kids who don't have to work 40 hours a week from leaving. They did not address the problems at Johnston seriously until it was obvious the school was closing. From their actions, one would think that they want the school to close. And nobody wins in that case. If that school closes, other area schools have to absorb the kids and it will hurt the kids in those other schools because a lot of the Johnston kids are going to have the same problems they had at Johnston (abseentism, discipline problems, language barriers, teen pregnancy, etc.) and suddenly they're befriending kids at the other AISD schools and we've got more kids falling prey to the above problems. I also think responsibility rests squarely on the shoulders of the parents and the students themselves. But the district needed to do more to get the students and the parents involved. Webb Middle School was turned around by community involvement. But on the other hand, it is very hard for people who have an income of $9,000 a year to get involved in the school. They are probably too busy scrambling to keep their family from starving to death. The parents of the children who left the school in droves, the ones who are upwardly mobile enough to transfer their children, they are the ones whose involvement would have saved it. Which is why I think Dr. Forgione is too late and probably wanted it that way. You would not believe how racist Austin is, it is astounding. Houston is much more integrated. When I first moved here my eyes practically bugged out of head at the segregation: white folk on the west side of 35, black and hispanic folk on the east side. Oh, and don't drive on the east side, white girl, you get a cap in your ass. Which of course is not like it is at all.
Okay, I'm climbing off my soapbox now. Seriously, DMD, thanks for your comment, I really do enjoy thinking about why I have my position on things. I don't get to argue with people I disagree with enough because I don't work with Republicans anymore!