Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Let Bylaws Be Bylaws

One of the primary themes of this blog is that teachers are in survival mode. Due to the tremendous workload a life of living from lesson plan to lesson plan is the reality. From time to time we get a jolt of energy and inspiration to become even more involved in our careers.

Take yesterday evening for example: I found myself with a slight cushion of “free time.” How that happened, I’m not entirely sure. My guess is that I’m still riding a wave created by the MLK holiday last week. However, it occurred to me that I use the time to visit our school district’s web site. I figured that as a professional with some “free time” that I could take advantage of my situation and become more familiar with the goings-ons with the district that I serve.

While I was perusing the school board’s bylaws, I came across a portion that had been stricken. There it was, text with the strikethrough function applied to it. The content had to do with the availability of proposed budgets. Before this format change it was stated that after a budget was presented and before it was adopted, a copy was available for review by anyone who requested such a thing.

By the looks of things that no longer seems possible. I have to admit that seeing such a thing is disappointing. My idealism would prefer that a public school system would be as transparent as can be and not find it appropriate to restrict documents.

Unfortunately, my paranoia outweighs my idealism and leaves me concerned as to where the district will go from this action. What extremes will arise from such a beginning? Will propagandistic posters start to appear with slogans like, “No Budget? No Problem!”? Will “difficult” teachers be taken from their beds under the cover of darkness?

As you can tell, my paranoia is marinated in an overactive imagination. In all seriousness, I hope this change is a temporary one. Perhaps the district is working on a better way to share the inner workings of a system that serves the people.

I hope.

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