Submitted by jerleen1 on Wed, 01/06/2010 - 16:28.


Help Rally to Save Tremont School on Saturday!


This Saturday, January 9th at 9am, we need you to join us at Lincoln West High School, 3202 West 30th Street, to rally support to save our Tremont School. We have been successful twice before! We need your presence and loud voices to do it a third time! Save Tremont School buttons are being made at Tremont West. Stop by and pick one up to show your support. Bring your Save Tremont School posters and banners to the meeting on Saturday.
Quoting Ward 3 Councilman Joe Cimperman, "All hands on deck, I need you and I need your help. HUGE MEETING this Saturday to determine the fate of our Tremont School. I need you and 2 of your friends there. Regardless of the CMSD decree, we need this school."
Click here to read Tremont West's letter in response to CMSD's decision to close Tremont School. We look forward to your support on Saturday!

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Suspicious CMSD school list

I really think that Tremont was thrown into the funeral pyre along with the east side schools, just to give Cimperman a chance to play the hero one more time before he runs for county executive. 

Of course, I hope that any show of public outcry is successful in saving Tremont and all of our schools, but I am sick of the real estate/contractor shell game we have been subjected to and the PD's sell job on an overpaid hatchet man and his cronies, brought in to take down our schools and neighborhoods in the first place. 

Good schools are messed up intentionally...and, architecturally landmark schools Benjamin Franklin K-8 and John Marshall High School are slated for the wrecking ball on the already overcrowded west side...

And, Councilman Brian Cummins never implemented protection over Ben Franklin Gardens availed to him by the protection put in place for Kentucky Gardens, when that school was demolished and now we have Rokakis' buddy, Brancatelli "safeguarding" the's all $$$$$ real estate, be damned.

Here's PD's poll results on the plan.  So doesn't look like everyone is being fooled...

Approve strongly 28% (145 votes)
Approve mildly 18% (93 votes)
Neither approve nor disapprove 14% (71 votes)
Disapprove mildly 11% (55 votes)
Disapprove strongly 30% (159 votes)
Total Votes: 523

I don't know who is fooling

I don't know who is fooling who in this game but clearly taking hundreds (thousands) of children and re-depositing them in other already over-crowded  schools with not enough teachers is somebody's convoluted way of patting themselves on the back.

I'm thinking that this will force the issue of bringing back bussing - since many parents either don't drive, don't have an available automobile, work and can't be home at the time their kids go to school, have no other means of transporting their children to school.  RTA passes might be alright for some of the older children but I surely don't see putting kindergardeners, first, second or third graders out to catch public transportation by themselves.  

I do think that when they thought this plot up, they must have been sipping something stronger than coffee or tea.  This only leads to more vacant buildings and the demolition cost alone could be money used for bettering educations.

I was really surprised to

I was really surprised to see Tremont on the list.  I thought Tremont was a thriving community.  I am wondering what they have planned for the Tremont area?  Why do they want to close down that school?

First thing crossed my mind

First thing crossed my mind was a parking lot?

CEO Sanders

He says that each neighborhood will have a school. The Tremont kids will be sent to W. 46th and Clark. That is a long hike for little kids, and RTA is cutting services, so this is not a happy situation. How does Sanders define a neighborhood? And what is the reference to charters? I need to read more as surely Sanders can't be saying that the duty of educating our kids should be turned over to the voucher system of for profit educators.

Paul Dunbar and Orchard Elementary  were both closed this past summer with the plan to tear down and rebuild. Orchard, the Blue Ribbon school, is now gone under this plan. Get this: the plan calls for reevaluating Dunbar in 2012. Right. The school that is currently closed, the kids and teachers sent elsewhere, that is due for a tear down and a total new building, gets a reevaluation in 2 years. Hey, lets make sure that the tear down and a new building gets put up before it gets closed permanently. We still have money from the tax levy for capital improvements that just got to be spent rather than fixing what will remain open.

Parents did not have a seat at the table for this plan. Sanders and Jackson did. Did either one of them ever consider smaller classroom student to teacher ratios?

And Joe Cimperman, your new ward 3 includes Dunbar. The neighborhood is not up and coming like Tremont, but I hope that you will fight for this school and this neighborhood with the same fervor as the Tremont school. 


Cimperman will never be down for Dunbar...

 I'm just sitting here quietly watching this play out. As some of you know, we just pulled our son from Tremont - for very valid reasons. Let me just say - we were not impressed - with ANYthing. But, having said that, I also will say I believe in neighborhood schools.

I think the Tremont kids will be sent to Buhrer - the "Montessori" program will go to Thomas Jefferson. Of course I could be wrong AND like all CMSD programs it could change with the wind.

Orchard and Dunbar are a different story. I'll speak for Dunbar. It currently sits surrounded by chain link fence and its parking lot is being rented by St. Ignatius. Our neighborhood group wanted to start some blacktop gardening for the kids (because half the entire school block is blacktop and it is a heat oasis) but then we found out it was closing and put our plans on hold.

I spoke with the director of development for St. Ignatius a year ago and he swore they had no plans what so ever to acquire property south of Chatham (which would include Dunbar) - now or in the future. He also specifically stated they had no plans to acquire Dunbar.

I don't know, maybe the plans stalled.

But yes, you would think that if Cimperman were a grassroots kinda councilman, he would me moving and shaking about schools in his district - not just Tremont.

yo well....

Portland, Oregon is still in our 5 year plan.

Scream bloody murder

  Because of my work schedule and the weather, it will be hard for me to get out to one of the district's meetings which have been incoveniently scheduled to avoid exposing the CEO to the underlying wrath  most of us who live in the city are feeling right now.

The man has NO conscience.  Where are the kids on the east side suppposed to go to school and why would he close East High after it was the school that started the whole warm, dry, safe initiative in the first place and it has a brand new spanking gym built with tax dollars to show for it? 

Why? Because, this is not about kids, it's about money...and the PD's Regina Brett thinks this is just BIG AND BOLD...


they don't like fair warning...

 giving it, I mean...

that was one of many issues I had with CMSD - they would announce important meetings at the last moment - a day before - or in worse scenarios, they actually announced a few AFTER they were held... now I don't know if it had something to do with someone's copy machine going down or what, and frankly, I don't care. The end result was it happened to be one of the few things they were consistent about and it made their claims to want parent contact and input a big joke.

That and the fact they had their parent organization meetings at 10 in the morning - ok - like - I don't live in 1954..... I WORK for a living.

Tremont Montessori

I work on Saturday...good luck...please make a scene for me....

another school plan (scam)

 All of this (CMSD Sander's plan) seems so familiar. How many plans have superintendents come up with over the years with grand words of achievements and education and test scores improvements, and yep, more public dollars? Each plan had decimated the CMSD more. (Remember that we lacked teachers so that CMSD recruited from India?) The Mayor and Plain Dealer, every time, push the latest plan and tell us why we should support it and spend more money. The graduation rate barely passes the half way mark. Each time the CEO decides to move on, and gets a behind the scenes negotiated severance packages and leaves Cleveland. We are left to pick up the pieces, but then, the pieces are not being picked up any more as people have lost hope in the school system.

Every plan, each step of the way, has failed to include the foundation of the system: the parents (grandparents these days), the kids, the teachers, and concerned residents. Just a look at how parent-teacher conferences are held, ignoring that parents have jobs, the lack of input by teachers in how their local school should be run, and not freaking asking the users of the schools what they want, dooms us all in Cleveland.

Cleveland is bleeding population, and the layout of the schools, including the number of buildings, have to be reviewed, revamped, and reduced, but with the full participation of foundation of the CMSD community, not by the chosen cronies of the Mayor, the CEO, and the corporations.

So CEO Sanders, in a year or so, you will be history. Thanks for what you are giving us as a parting gift.

Lost Hope in the CMSD

I would favor shutting down the whole system and using the voucher program to allow parents to choose the school that best meets the needs of their children.  The Cleveland Public School System has failed.  Discontinue the failed system and allow the private schools to take over the job of educating the children of Cleveland.  I am positive it would be a better option for the children. 

Lost Hope in the CMSD

I would favor shutting down the whole system and using the voucher program to allow parents to choose the school that best meets the needs of their children.  The Cleveland Public School System has failed.  Discontinue the failed system and allow the private schools to take over the job of educating the children of Cleveland.  I am positive it would be a better option for the children. 


I do not favor handing the public school system over. The voucher system has harmed public schools, and with the CEO proposing that some buildings be taken over by charter schools, it does seem that either he is accepting defeat or pushing us further toward defeat. I am an opponent of the voucher system. I no longer vocally oppose it as when a kid needs to learn, the school are a dangerous place to be, and you can't move to a place with a better school, well, I will not fight the parent of that child for making a decision in the best interest of their child. That fight should not be between opponent of the voucher system and the parent. It should be between all of us and the school board. Too many have been there and done it, and while not admitting defeat, just do not know what to do. I sure don't know what to do anymore.

theory vs. reality

Thank you for recognizing that when you actually have a child in the "system", your opinion about vouchers can radically shift.

We went into CMSD with optimism  - it took a short 5 months to drain it out of us.

I think what I was trying to say (above) is that it is an overall attitude that matters. When the administration puts out a 60% effort, it "trickles down" and everyone feels the malaise. Every simple interaction with the school turned into an arduous task. No wonder parents give up.

They are "talking the talk" but they are nOt walking it. They say they want and encourage parent involvement, but parent organizations meet at 10am. Notices for important meetings are routinely issued a day before (or day of or day after). Teachers do not communicate via email and do not encourage parental involvement. I signed up to volunteer for several occasions and I was never contacted. It was a struggle to find out what was going on in my child's classroom.

And this was one of the "better" schools.

After 5 months of this, any reasonable parent would begin to look elsewhere. Thank God we did - ahead of the closing. Now I take my child to our "voucher" school and I leave with a sense of calm confidence he will have a good day and be in a safe learning environment. THAT changes my ideology - radically.

I want to provide another

I want to provide another perspective.  I see that you experienced frustration, but for one of you, there are hundreds of us other parents who have our children at Tremont school that are very happy with the program, education, and community that has been created.  My child has been there since preschool and is now in her fourth year there.  In that time I have come to know the other parents and children pretty well.  It did not happen overnight, and I, like you, work so am not able to attend PSO meetings.  But I scheduled time with her teacher, I attend every event I can, and I've met the other parents at teacher conferences and have made efforts to send letters home with my child's friends, introducing myself and trying to get to know them.  It doesn't work with every parent, but slowly, I have gotten to know and appreciate this community and the enormous commitment of the teachers.  I have sat in and observed the classroom on a few occasions and have been impressed with the curriculum.  Not every classroom is the same and one particular year was difficult, but I felt the support of the principal, the other parents, and the teacher was definitely there.  Do I think there is still alot of work to be done - hell, yes.  But I believe that the commitment of the community, the staff, and the parents is high and as long as I and the other parents keep pushing it will continue to improve as it has over these last 5 years.  I will be at the community meeting on Saturday to fight for this program to remain in the Tremont community.  I am hoping for a good turnout so we can show by numbers, if not words, the support this community truly has for this school.

Parent Too

I'm glad you had a good experience, I did many of the things you did, but for some reason they did not work out the same for us.

Every time I observed the class it was in complete chaos. I felt my child was being disserved.

I also don't think I should have to struggle to get services my child needs and to stay "in the loop". I think simple good effort should suffice. I did my part.

It may well have been we had a very bad teacher, but I was very disappointed in the administration's lack of response to the situation. I assure you I was not theonly one! Again, I don't think I should have to throw a histrionic fit to get something done about it. Thats not my job and its not my responsibility - my responsibility was to report it, which I (and others) did do.  

Anyways, we are very happy now. I do wish you luck with your efforts!

dbra: good decision

Happy to hear that your child is doing well in this 'voucher' school.  I am with you on this one. 

I'm glad for the company Ward14!

 I'm glad for the company Ward14!

I do at moments feel "guilty", but all I need to do is remember what that classroom (with 23 children, btw) was like and my guilt vaporizes.

When it comes to a decision between my family and my community, my family will always come first


Vouchers didn't harm the

Vouchers didn't harm the public schools....the vouchers allowed low income parents to take their children out of non-functioning public schools and enroll them in a higher quality schools.   The voucher program has probably saved a lot of children from getting an inferior education and given them an opportunity for success. 

My grandson started kindergarten at Louis Munoz and it was a horrible experience for him.  There was an eighth grade teacher trying to teach kindergarden children and the classroom was chaotic.  The voucher system allowed him to change schools and attend St. Rocco's School where he is thriving.  Without the voucher system he would have had no choice but to remain in a bad school situation. 

I think the voucher system is the way to go here in Cleveland.  It doesn't have to be a religious school, it can be any privately run school that is in the business of education and has proven to be successful.  Why send our children to failing schools?  What does that prove?  Nothing!  It only hurts the children and ultimately the community when they fail to learn. 

Voucher System

Deb, I agree the voucher system has decimated our school system, diverting funds and talent.  What has happend is just what Al Gore predicted many years ago.  Plus our School Board is a dumping ground for political appointments.....think Gerald Henly (sp?) who, thank God, is no longer a member.  What has happened to our school system is akin to what happened to Cleveland when bussing began.  The backbone of our citizenry fled.

I'm not so sure I don't support Saunder's plan.  Spoke to several teachers last night neither of whom seemed adamently against the plan readily admitting there were too many building for number of students.  We have to do something.  Maybe the neighborhood school is a thing of the past; however desirable. 

Fixing the schools is huge and must be done before Cleveland can move forward.  Deb, I share your indecision. 





I strongly disagree.  If

I strongly disagree.  If the CMSD was doing a good job of educating the children of Cleveland there would be no need for vouchers.  The system has failed the children and a lot of money has been spent trying to fix it...but it stays broken.  And now they want even more money?  This is ridiculous. 

I hope that any parents that are reading this seriously consider taking their child/children out of the Cleveland School System and enrolling them in a private school.  Check the statistics on achievement between the private schools and the public schools before you decide. 

If I had a child of my own I would NOT send my child to a Cleveland Public School.   I am happy that my two sons send their children to private schools.  They are all doing well in school. 

It comes down to money just

It comes down to money just like everything else.  So many families cannot afford private schools.  They're stuck with a system that is run by people who worry more about making themselves look good than giving these kids a decent education.

Think about all the money spent to implement this plan.  It could have been put to better use - even if it just helped one school. 


That is why I like vouchers.

It gives parents a choice.  If the public schools are the best choice the parents will most likely choose it.  If the public schools are not the best choice the parents are free to choose another school.  Without the voucher system the parents that don't have money have no choice, and I think this is wrong.  The voucher system allows all parents to choose the best schools for their children.  


vouchers take money from the public schools. Kids are screened to get into a charter school. I would like to see the demographics on the charter schools but I am not going to fight with parents who are using the vouchers to keep their children safe from CSMD and to get them educated. The current CMSD still has some hope, though, and we are seeing that  expressed here on this site. This has been sort of uplifting, that people cared enough to engage. 

Not me.  I have given up on

Not me.  I have given up on the CMSD.

I would like to see all parents disenroll their children from the system.  Maybe that is the action that will convince the administrators that the people that live in Cleveland are not satisfied. 

I can't fight for something I think is horribly wrong.  The children are being shortchanged and the high paid administrators are earning a good living off of the failed system. 

Maybe the problem is that the administrators are trying to find a way to educate children that live in the city of Cleveland; but they don't live here or send their children to the Cleveland schools.  How would they begin to know what the children need?

Sanders and the Ku Klux Klan

Is just fulfilling the PLAN and formulating the complete breakdown of Jeffersonian Democracy. 

Our country has such a long way to go towards realizing a more perfect union.

Here's the poll today:

Thank you, we have already counted your vote.
Approve strongly 29% (166 votes)
Approve mildly 18% (100 votes)
Neither approve nor disapprove 13% (75 votes)
Disapprove mildly 10% (55 votes)
Disapprove strongly 30% (172 votes)
Total Votes: 568

whatever it takes...translated

Sanders spouting code for : Don't worry, you can keep exploiting the system that uses other people's money to make money and live out there in Geauga, Avon and Lake County and send your kids to private school. 

We won't come out there to bother you.  We can take care of our own. 

Read the book.

Geoffrey Canada

Yes, Laura, there are examples of charter schools that have taken huge steps toward better education. Canada's program in Harlem is certainly one of them. So is The Intergenerational School. Then there's Montessori, Waldorf, parochial, etc.

So what's your solution? What should Sanders do that he is not promised to do. Granted this is only a plan and plans often go unfinished. But for those of us who are not able to drop what we're reading and pick up Geoffrey Canada's book, what is it that you learned from Canada that you suggest is not represented in this plan?

Should we have charter schools and eliminate the CMSD - kids could be in a lottery and some could go to school and some could just... what?

At Canada's school in Harlem, he is the hero.

We have failed our children. They live in a world where danger lurks all around them and their playgrounds are filled with broken glass, crack vials, and sudden death. And the stuff of our nightmares when we were children is the common reality for children today. Monsters are out there and claiming children in record numbers. And so we must stand up and be visible heroes, fighting for our children. I want people to understand the crisis that our children face and I want people to act. - Geoffrey Canada

So who will determine which teachers have hero qualities? The Union? Canada says if he feels a teacher is not up to his standards, he fires them. Not so easy for a public school leader.

It is interesting to note that the concept and the reality of public education came about with the invention of the steam engine and the rise of the industrial revolution. In his book, The Rise and Fall of Public Education in America: The interdependence of public education and society, R. Winfield Smith discusses how education in America began.

There was a lot of talk in Pennsylvania, both in the halls of the legislature and in n the public arena, of the need for a significant state role in education but little action resulted until voluntarism sprang into action. Voluntarism was a unique American Trait described by Alexis de Tocqueville in his Democracy in America, a four-volume perceptive study of the political and social systems in the US in the early nineteenth century. De Tocqueville noted that wherever at the head of some important new undertaking in France you’ll find the government, in England a man of rank, in America you’re sure to find an association.

So now that we are coming to the end of the industrial revolution’s power, where is the association? Where is the parent teacher organization  who insisted on being a part of Sander’s planning process?

Teachers aren't SAINTS

They are human beings...the charter school system will eventually burn itself out, because these human beings are not superhuman.  They do their best and they have a better support network in place to realistically deal with unruly kids, but these teachers will leave for the first public school teaching position, because they want to be able to retire EVENTUALLY.  I agree that unions are not helping to protect the ideals of public education and charter schools are doing good things, because unions don't spend enough time promoting standards that protect children and adults. 

You ask about PTAs in the CMSD system.  Good question.  The District does not encourage real parent engagement.  What about detention?  Remember detentions?  How about truancy...what penalties are imposed on parents for their failure to instill the value of education on their child?

I know that this is not some easy discussion to have in NEO.  But, I see a system flush with money-- and that money has not gone into providing a quality environment for learning. 

There is little to no maintenance of existing facilities and the computer technology at CMSD is pathetic.  The physical building is only important to the District, and to the business interests who really control the District, as construction/architecture and other lucrative contracts to exploit public dollars for profit.

(I should point out that I am NOT at work--I am at home where I type out my diatribes...because I work odd hours...sometimes 12:30-8, sometimes Saturdays and sometimes a "normal" 9-5day...and most of the time, I type out and spew my thoughts in the early hours of the morning, because I can't sleep knowing that other peoples' conscience doesn't keep them AWAKE.)

But Canada says his teachers ARE saints, well heroes

They have to be or he fires them - spit spot.

But when we're done with the diatribes and blaming, I will return to this question: What is it that you learned from Canada that you suggest is not represented in this plan?

I know, I think we all know Burns is a crook. But when he is serving time, then what? What's your plan?

As to SES, it seems that someone made mistake. But this does seem shady.  James Bowen doesn't seem to have built anything in Cleveland.

Be at LINCOLN tomorrow

Good luck, ParentToo--you will save Tremont School, because you care. 

I am convinced that Tremont Montessori was thrown in as a red herring to divert attention from the east side schools that should also NOT be closed.  It's almost impossible to demand accountability from administrators--they know that and they are counting on it.

Big question to ask THIS Saturday--Why would the district close Tremont and keep K-8 Luis Munoz Marin operating when District just built (at considerable cost) new K-8 Buhrer-- across the street???


Again, I can't be there--please GO and this means our council reps should be there, too.

Just from my personal

Just from my personal observations - I do believe that these plans have been in the works for some time.   When they speak of moving the programs from Tremont to another West Side building - I am sure that they are talking about the new school presently being built on West 46th and Clark.

Since this building is nearly completed, it would only make sense that it was the plan all along.

My questions are - How did they come to pick that location as a place for a school?  It is in a high crime area - especially with heavy drug trafficking.  West 48th - which is right around the corner has quite a few boarded up houses before you get to the first stop sign off of Clark.

Once you turn up West 46th - a couple of hundred feet brings you to Oakley and people actually are out in the street shooting.  My sister lives on that street and her house is riddled with bullet holes, her truck windows have been shot out more than once and  there are bullet holes in her fence - and a couple of bullets have actually gone all the way through the house.  Last winter someone let off about six shots right down through Oakley and the police dug bullets out of my sisters house and the houses across on the other side of West 48th.  One of the shots just barely missed the gas tank on her truck. 

  She's trying to get out of there - why in God's name would anyone think of sending little kids into a war zone.  this is so not a good place to build a new school. 



Thomas Jefferson Elementary School

This is a tear down and build of a long time elementary school. Kids have been going to it for decades. You are right about the war zone. Bullets do fly but that also happens in neighborhoods all over the city. Lots of little kids going to schools in war zones, and if it is good enough for a kid on W. 44th, it is good enough for a kid from Tremont. (I don't really believe any child should have to be unsafe but I am pointing out the absurdity of the safety issue and also a caution to not use the argument of sending little Tremonters to W. 46th because it is not safe when neighborhood kids have to go there. That only feeds the us vs. them mentality).

I agree

I could not agree more.  I would never insist it was okay to send another child to a school and location I wasn't willing to send my own child.  The location is not the issue for me. What is the problem is that the city is not talking about making it a neighborhood school.  They want to make it a specialty school by transferring the program from Tremont.  There are several problems with this:

1.  The new school is too large to accommodate the smaller montessori program so they are adding a second K-12 school to round out the numbers to be located in the same building.  This will place highschool kids who are virtual strangers in the same building with kindergardeners and preschoolers.

2.  This  transfer to an unknown neighborhood (unknown to many of the montessori population) will likely result in many current montessori students deciding to go to other schools.  The district will need to get enrollment up by admitting a high number of students at all ages that have no familiarity with the montessori program.  This will have the same affect that the transfer to Tremont 5 years ago had on the program - alot of disruption and lower test scores that has taken these 5 years to overcome. They say they want to support a school that is continuously improving but are creating a situation where they are sure to slide in the wrong direction.

3.  As a citywide draw school, the montessori school benefits from being in a neighborhood that is also a citywide draw neighborhood.  Events in the neighborhood, shops, and restaurants provides opportunities for people who do not live in the neighborhood a chance to get to know it and find a comfort level before sending their kids to the school.  As dwebb stated there are safety issues all over the city, with some of it being real, but much of it being connected to not really knowing anything about an area and going on misplaced fear.  In fact, I have friends in the burbs who are still afraid of coming to Tremont.  If the district is serious about providing an exceptional montessori program - it is given a boost by staying where it is and updating the current facility.

the points on Tremont School??

1) The new school is not just for the montessori school but is being rebuilt for TJ students to return to. Did you not know this, that this school is not being built to house Tremont school students? Where did you get the info of K-12 as a new class size for TJ? I think that you will find that you have been given faulty information.

2) This plan will disrupt all schools across the city. Tremont is not the only school showing improvement. This plan is being done haphazardly, i.e. closing down Dunbar for a rebuild in 2009 then stating a reevaluation in 2012?

3) How many students at Tremont live in the Tremont neighborhood? If Tremont is a citywide draw, then the school board may very well be justified in thinking that parents would be fine at TJ, right off of I-90, just a couple miles away from Tremont school. If people support the concept of each neighborhood having a school, and if the student base at Tremont School is citywide, not local,  then that support may evaporate. 



1.  The new TJ school is described in the transformation plan as housing the current montessori program and a K-12 Newcomers school.  It is in the powerpoint accessible on the district website.  When this montessori program first came to Tremont 5 years ago, the tremont children who had been at Tremont school could not attend the new Tremont montessori if they were above the 3rd grade.  This is due to the specialized way of teaching that the older children may not be able to adapt to.  I would assume this would also be true for the local TJ former students.  Children do not get assigned to this school because they live in the neighborhood - they have to apply.

2. It will disrupt all schools, but will disrupt the ability of teachers to effectively teach the montessori method if the students in the class are not familiar with the process and not willing to work in small group settings.  It happened when they came to Tremont 5 years ago.  It was originally Barbara
Booker Montessori which was a blue ribbon school and Dike Montessori (which was not doing as well.)

3.  I am a Tremont resident, but was looking at Barbara Booker for my child when the montessori program was there, over the Tremont neighborhood school because I want the specific montessori program.  I am not opposed to sending her to another neighborhood - I am opposed to the size of the building that will disrupt the programming for the reasons I mentioned in the earlier email.

Hope this clarifies things.

This is so true dwebb.  ALL

This is so true dwebb.  ALL CHILDREN need a safe school to attend...not just the ones that live in certain protected areas of the city. 

Not my intention at all to

Not my intention at all to say that any kids should be sent to or go to a school in an unsafe neighborhood.  My point is, instead of sending more kids to places that are unsafe, work on making other places safer instead of complicating the situation by putting more kids in danger. 

If you are aware that children from  two schools are in an unsafe neighborhood, you don't say well, let's even the odds and put those from a third in the line of fire.  You use what resources you have to make the other children just as safe.

The plan seems to border on discrimination considering they are basing their decisions on low schoolastic scores.  Not all children learn at the same rate - so what are they saying, because some kids aren't on the same level as others, they get shuffled around? 

The Cleveland School system has a lot more problems to worry about instead of changing the locations to make the bureacrats look good.

After Sanders pulls this stunt off, how much of a raise is he planning on giving himself? 

Also, tomorrow's meeting is about all the West side schools listed to be closed.  That is why the rally is being held at Lincoln West.



I am not worried about Sanders giving himself a raise. I am worried about the severance package he gets after the plan is in place, we are screwed, he announces that he got the job done, and needs to move on. With hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayer funds as a parting gift. 

That is just sad.

Can the Cleveland Schools System be charged with child endangering? 

Lincoln/Cimperman/other schools

Tomorrow's meeting is about a number of schools being closed. I am losing Orchard Elementary and probably Dunbar Elementary. The people in this neighborhood have far less means in life than most people in Tremont. But this meeting is being turned into a rally about one school only. So what the hell is really going on here?  What a freaking disservice to the rest of us. What about the people who turn out to voice their concern about their school and it is all about Tremont? Can the campaign rally be held on someone else's time rather than on the back of this issue? Leading a rally to save one school is a form of oppression when it will lead to smothering the interest and voices of others. 


Tremont population

Just for reference, most of the children who attend Tremont are not from Tremont.  This is a citywide draw school.  In fact many of these children are from some of the worst neighborhoods in cleveland whose parents are searching for a better option.

Thanks, parent too

 It is always good to have dialogue on this issues. Again, this is about much more than 1 school. To let tomorrow turn into a rally just for one school gives the shaft to the future of lot of kids. Tremont supporters should have equal, but not more than, input on the plan. We are all in this together, right? Wrong?

I do not support closing down the Tremont school and I really do not think that this will happen. There are a number of schools on the chopping block that draw from the city and I still maintain that smaller classrooms with a better student to teacher ratio is the way to go, and this is an opportunity to make that happen. I take exception to how this plan was drawn up. I also take exception to an elected representative only rallying one part of the represented area. 



equality in opportunity

 The equality in opportunity to speak out probably does not exist as both Dunbar and Orchard students have been "temporarily" placed elsewhere, in schools unknown to them, while their old schools are being torn down and new ones built. Out of sight, out of mind.....

Worst neighborhoods in the city!

This is the problem.  Instead of spending money to fix the schools, spend the money to fix the neighborhoods and the schools will take care of themselves.  But, what does our mayor decide to do....lay off police.  What is he thinking?  Now our school system wants to close schools and send children to a school that was built in a bad neighborhood?  Who really cares about the needs of the children that live in these neighborhoods? 

This is just unacceptable.  Get your kids out of the system.  They deserve better.

Toledo and Cleveland

The stories you won't see in the Plain Dealer--

Bowing to mediocrity
Blade. "Bowing to mediocrity." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 6 May. 2007, City Final, Pages of Opinion: B4. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

Here's why Toledo is behind
ROSE RUSSELL BLADE ASSOCIATE EDITOR. "Here's why Toledo is behind." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 25 Aug. 2007, City Final, Pages of Opinion: A9. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

Finkbeiner won't face prosecution over ethics
TOM TROY BLADE STAFF WRITER. "Finkbeiner won't face prosecution over ethics." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 25 Aug. 2007, City Final,: A1. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

"NOT ALL SEE EYE TO EYE WITH SUPPORTERS OF NEW DISTRICT BUILDINGS." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 21 Oct. 2002, CITY FINAL,: A1. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

Schools revise deficit to $12M, down $7M
BLADE. "Schools revise deficit to $12M, down $7M." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 28 Mar. 2006, City Final, Second News: B3. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

2 top administrators retiring from schools
IGNAZIO MESSINA BLADE STAFF WRITER. "2 top administrators retiring from schools." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 7 Mar. 2006, City Final, Second News: B2. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

School-closing plan draws pleas, anger - Fate of 2 junior highs debated at TPS forum
IGNAZIO MESSINA BLADE STAFF WRITER. "School-closing plan draws pleas, anger - Fate of 2 junior highs debated at TPS forum." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 5 Apr. 2006, City Final,: A1. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

Dozen top officials to quit school system - Treasurer among posts to be vacated
IGNAZIO MESSINA BLADE STAFF WRITER. "Dozen top officials to quit school system - Treasurer among posts to be vacated." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 28 Jun. 2006, City Final,: A1. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

A parade to Cleveland
BLADE. "A parade to Cleveland." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 30 Jun. 2006, City Final, Pages of Opinion: A16. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

Sanders says Fisher to blame in departures - Key officials follow TPS boss to new job
IGNAZIO MESSINA BLADE STAFF WRITER. "Sanders says Fisher to blame in departures - Key officials follow TPS boss to new job." Blade, The (Toledo, OH) 1 Jul. 2006, City Final, Second News: B1. NewsBank. Web. 8 Jan. 2010.

State audit asked over former aide

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - December 20, 2008
Author: Blade
Edition: City Final
Section: Second News
Page: B3


Ex-Toledo schools manager gets audit - Burns on paid leave in Cleveland district

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - December 24, 2008
Author: BLADE
Edition: City Final
Section: Second News
Page: B3


Ex-TPS aide is suspected of $500,000 theft - Toledo losses may exceed Cleveland's

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - December 5, 2009
Edition: City Final
Page: A1


Preventing theft at TPS

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - December 9, 2009
Author: Blade
Edition: City Final
Section: Pages of Opinion
Page: A10


TPS board has no clue

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - May 25, 2006
Author: BLADE
Edition: City Final
Section: Pages of Opinion
Page: A12


Ethics panel to look into mayor's role in TPS case - Finkbeiner sought to boost leader's pay

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - May 26, 2006
Edition: City Final
Page: A1


Mayor admits error in attempt to boost Sanders' paycheck - Finkbeiner writes state ethics panel

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - May 10, 2006
Edition: City Final
Page: A1


Legality of fund-raising for Sanders still unsure

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - April 25, 2006
Author: Blade
Edition: City Final
Section: Second News
Page: B2


Law director looking into legality of mayor seeking funds for Sanders

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - April 22, 2006
Edition: City Final
Page: A1


Prosecutor suggests investigation of Finkbeiner in TPS case

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - April 21, 2006
Edition: City Final
Page: A1

No connection??

A parade to Cleveland

Blade, The (Toledo, OH) - Friday, June 30, 2006
Author: BLADE
PD--please see this article, especially--you have access.


Geoffrey Canada

I've been a Geoffry Canada fan for years.  His Harlem program is working, showing good results.  Problem is the costs.  Astronomical!  Beyond anything that could be supported around here even with grants. 


CMSD Chief AcadeCEO Sanders shares academic goals for Cleveland Municipal School District
by Chuck Hoven

(Plain Press, November 2007) At an October 1st Community Forum at Zone Recreation Center, Cleveland Metropolitan School District Chief Executive Officer Eugene T.W. Sanders offered some insight into the academic planning for the district.

Dr. Sanders said his administration would be focusing on four key areas as work continues to improve the school district: the achievement gap, graduation rates, innovation and professional development.

Speaking of the achievement gap, Sanders said over the next three years the district would be working to "make our third graders on level with any average third graders in the state of Ohio." As part of that effort Sanders said teacher/student ratios in grades K-3 will be reduced to 1 teacher to every 20 students.

The current graduation rate for Cleveland Metropolitan School District students is 55%, said Sanders. "That is unacceptable. What we have done and what we are doing is laying the framework to advance that percentage to a much higher level," said Sanders. He said an upcoming mandatory meeting with parents of high school seniors would review what was expected of students as they worked to finish their last year of high school and to meet the requirements of the Ohio Graduation Test.

Under the category of innovation, Sanders said the district hoped to open a new high school in the fall of 2008, which would focus on Industrial Design. He said the new school would be a STEM academy focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Other innovations already implemented this year include single-sex elementary schools and the Ginn Academy, which serves high school boys.

The fourth component of the district’s focus, professional development, would include continuing development of teaching and other building staff, developing leaders to help move the school system forward, said Sanders.

Staffing ratios

While Sanders presented a clear goal of 20 students or less per teacher less in grades K-3, goals for other grades and types of staff were less forthcoming. Sanders asked his staff to follow up on a request for additional staffing information from the Plain Press.

mic Officer Eric S. Gordon responded that the goal in grades 4-8 is to have no more than 28 students per teacher. District data indicates that grades K-3 currently average less than 17 students per classroom. In grades 4-8 the district averages less than 23 students per teacher.
At the high school level, Gordon says the district’s goal is that no teacher will have more than a total of 170 students in the teacher’s classes. Although this means an average high school class of 28 students, the district plan does not call for limits to sizes of individual high school classes. No data was provided on current average classroom sizes in the district’s high schools.

Gordon provided the Plain Press with data on the number of CMSD administrative and support personnel in various categories. However, no goals for ideal staffing levels or student to staff ratios were provided. Gordon says that is typically done as part of the annual budgeting process, which was completed for this school year in spring, 2007. Those budgeting decisions are reflected in the number of staff in district data.

The district currently lists 204 people as serving as school administrators with titles such as campus administrators, principals, assistant principals and small group leaders.

The district has 154 media specialists in the K-8 schools and 40 media specialists in the secondary schools.

The district reports 76 speech and hearing therapists, 50 nurses, 25 occupational therapists, 8 physical therapists, 2 mobility therapists and 2 audiologists.

The district has 5 social workers for which it provides funding. It lists 72 guidance counselors and 74 school psychologists.

The CMSD currently has 110 buildings and roughly 55,000 students. While the district lists no student to personnel ratios for these staff, a source familiar with the workload assigned to school psychologists provides some insight into the impact of district staffing levels.

Our source says that in an urban setting each school building should have a full time school psychologist, and there should be a ratio of 300 students to each school psychologist.

The school psychologists are the school personnel best equipped to identify troubled youth and get them into special programs or provide them with needed special services.

Under the current system the CMSD’s 74 school psychologists are not only responsible for testing, evaluations and re-evaluations of the district’s 55,000 students, but also are responsible for reviewing evaluations and re-evaluations of the 19,000 charter school students and additional Cleveland students that use vouchers to attend private schools.

This brings the ratio of students to school psychologists to over 1,000 to one. Under these staffing levels, school psychologists spend much of their time reviewing required evaluation forms and have little time to devote to meeting with students and their families.


 I just had a throughly discouraging conversation with a person that has years of experience working on various issues with Cleveland schools. The money for capital improvements isn't there. Her belief is that the funds are almost exhausted and that schools torn down now likely will not be rebuilt unless there is an influx of fresh money from the state or a levy. The state is broke, and Clevelanders are unlikely to pass a new levy (you think?). The language in the Sanders plan matches a lot of the language in the federal stimulus call for proposals. If granted, the states receives the funding and distributes it to the school districts. If Sanders plan is indeed based on funding from the feds, he is putting too many eggs in one basket. The call for proposals says the the City administration, the school board and the teachers union must all sign off on the proposal and they proposals are due at the end of January.

The state also has limits on how far a kid can walk to get to school then the school must provide transportation, and that cost money too.

So in this grand plan, where so many details are lacking, I find myself so very discouraged about the future of education for the children of Cleveland. Oh, she also said that it is possible that the long term goal of some school districts is to get out of public education, and hand that over to private, charter-type schools, though at that point, I was overwhelmed and no longer listening well.

Sanders tax vs garbage tax

 How much can we bear in one of the poorest cities in the nation, how much can we pay out for Sanders plan that disregards the hard won achievements in some schools and disregards that RTA plans to cut routes more than ever, that disregards the gang turf issues that heated up at Lincoln West this fall? Money for schools in Ohio largely depend on collections of property taxes and levies. Well, real estate values are down and a levy won't fly. Foundations are not giving as much because they are not getting as much.

Sanders says the school district has a $50,000,000 deficit. To implement the plan, not only does the $50,000,000 deficit have to be addressed, it will cost an additional $20 to 25,000,000 per year just for these steps in the plan.

Here, from his plan, the plan to pay for it. It is what it is.

Securing sustainable funding will require CMSD target multiple sources 

• Creative internal sources (redirecting existing spending) 

• Federal stimulus and school improvement grants 

• Community partnership council support 

• Additional taxpayer support may be needed if other sources are not sufficient