Only three of the four candidates for Round Rock School Board attended a candidate forum last Saturday; it seems that Eric Pav, candidate for open seat Place 7, chose to attend the Texas-OU football game instead. For those of us who have been concerned about the spending priorities of the school district, Mr. Pav's choice is rather disappointing. It became apparent during Superintendent's budget scare last year that the RRISD Administration was much more willing to cut TAG and Special Needs teachers before they would touch any expenditures relating to football. Voters hope that prospective school board trustees would have an appropriate sense of priorities.
In related news, the Round Rock ISD Concerned Parents have some very good information on where the candidates stand in regards to Standards Based Grading (essentially a re-packaging of Outcome Based Education, another failed education fad.) The group formed last year in response to the Round Rock School District's adoption of the highly controversial SBG. The group submitted questions to the candidates, and has the responses posted at their website. While both Pauline Law and Tere McCann indicated they do not support use of SBG in the district, Eric Pav responded that although he does not favor re-implementation of SBG, he believes that:
"All grading systems are outcome based. I am in favor of evaluation and assessment practices that give students the ability to achieve subject mastery and make progress, while not penalizing any student regardless of achievement ability."Even more disturbing is Pav's response to whether the failure of SBG in Round Rock was due to the merits of the philosophy or merely poor implementation:
Both. From what I have researched and discussed with parents, the Ridgeview MS implementation was not rolled out consistently, nor communicated very well.Chadwell, who has already experienced RRISD parent outrage over SBG, stated in the questionnaire that he does not support the radical grading system, although the Concerned Parents group notes that Mr. Chadwell opposed their pleas to return to traditional grading. (The CP website links to board meeting video from 10/20/2011 with Chadwell's comments.)
Tonight's forum, hosted by the RRISD Council of PTAs, will be at 7pm at the Stony Point High School cafeteria.