15
   

We're from the government and we're here to help....

 
 
hawkeye10
 
  3  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 01:44 pm
@firefly,
Quote:
It sounds as though they rushed getting the survey done and didn't really take enough time to answer everyone's questions, or to provide enough information to get certain questions raised and answered, possibly because they wanted it accomplished well before the end of the school year.

as has already been reported in this thread this screen was the result of a year of contemplation and labor. the consulting with and advising of the stakeholders was clearly given the drive-by treatment however, probably because it would get in the way of what was wanted.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  5  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 02:21 pm
Extracting the information from underage, aka, non adult people by passing out surveys, especially surveys wherein the students are named, is a misuse use of authority. If a parent tells the teaching staff private matters about their children's lives, that is one thing, including possibly another can of worms, but the survey asks matters that are otherwise none of the teachers' business, or the school board's.

Nosy parkers parading as do gooders.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 02:42 pm
@ossobuco,
a miss spending of authority..all such blatant miss using of an asset diminishes it, and the ones using it. I promise you that the kids have less respect for school staff than they did before screening day, and it is not because of this teacher.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 02:49 pm
I'm way behind the curve on this thread since we decided on an impromptu camping trip but reading through quickly --

Even if this isn't a 5th amendment situation I'm thinking the kids learned a good lesson that day: that they aren't required to give an answer just because someone in authority asked them a question.

0 Replies
 
BillRM
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 02:55 pm
@firefly,
Quote:
Go back and read what I wrote. I clarified what I was saying in a subsequent post. I was referring to a student admitting to such use on a school survey.


An as underage children can be declared delinquents for behaviors that are not even crimes for adults I see no reason that such a survey could not be used against the children who admitted to be drug users.

Funny how far we had come as I remember when as a young man it came out that the local police in NJ was using high school yearbooks for photo line ups when some crime was done by someone of roughly the right age.

Lovely idea that you are now running the risk of some witness misidentifying you and subjecting you to a police investigation because you allowed your picture to be in your own high school year book.

A very large percent of the male students at least decided that under those conditions they would not have a yearbook picture taken all over the state of New Jersey.

The public uproar from both parents and students have the police backtracking and promising not to used school yearbooks as a screening device concerning people there was no reason to assume had anything to do with a crime except that they was living in an area and roughly of the right age.
0 Replies
 
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 02:56 pm
Well, the post by firefly with the links has me rethinking my opinion of the school board. I think what SHOULD have happened is that the school (and/or board) held a widely publicized meeting with the parents and children to discuss this survey so ALL would know why it was proposed, that it wouldn't be anonymous, and that the students didn't have to complete it. They also could have discussed what would be done with the information after (shred? incinerate? keep in file?)

I think the reasons for the survey were honourable, in light of the previous suicides, etc. However, the communication on the board's part was dreadful and no wonder something like this happened.

And I think Dryden might be a little bit of a loose canon or throwback from the anti-establishment 60's era. However, he did say that had he known participating was optional or if he'd know what it was about, he wouldn't have said what he did (something like that). So maybe he did deserve the suspension and loss of pay (not really a big deal), but the school board and principal also deserved the same for their lack of forethought and preparation.
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 03:25 pm
Quote:
In that state, the school is obligated to show they are meeting the social/emotional needs and development of their students


So what happens now?

If another kid kills themselves is the school district liable for not having met the social/emotional/development needs of the kid?

And isn't this in Illinois? And isn't Illinois the state that just shut down 50 (more) schools?

I really would like to know how many of these "troubled" students have been redeemed due to the work of the school. What actions were taken? What services were provided?

Does anyone know?
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 04:02 pm
@boomerang,
how about we back all the way up to establishing that there was actually abnormally high rates of suicide to begin with MKay? I for one am not willing to accept such self serving assertions on blind faith.

"we are the bosses and the situation demands that we intrude right now no matter what you want" say the wardens of the police state as they pull the levers of power.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  3  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 04:18 pm
@firefly,
firefly wrote:

Quote:
Whatever the intentions, there is still opportunity to misuse the information.

Where is the clear indication for that in this situation? The school has to legally protect the confidentiality of the survey information about the student, the testing service must also protect confidentiality and maintain security over the results of the survey.

Sure. Because confidential information never leaks, and people in authority never misuse this kind of data.

Seriously, what world do you live in?
DrewDad
 
  2  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 04:20 pm
@firefly,
firefly wrote:
I think you have to balance the benefits to students against the hypothetical possibility of some sort of "misuse" of the survey info by an unscrupulous individual.

I think you have to consider the benefits to be pretty hypothetical, too.

Hypothetical benefit vs. hypothetical harm.

And the people running the survey already seem pretty incompetent for not having an anonymous survey.
0 Replies
 
firefly
 
  0  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 04:51 pm
@ossobuco,
Quote:
but the survey asks matters that are otherwise none of the teachers' business, or the school board's.

On issues of substance use, the school does consider such matters it's business because it's also part of their conduct code--and that has to reflect what the parents also want them to be doing.
This school has a very strict code of conduct--prohibiting drugs, alcohol, and tobacco--for any student participating in performance based extra-curricular events--and this code is in effect 24/7 all year round, even when school is not in session, on school property and off of it--and students are expected to self-report their own infractions within 48 hours.
http://bhs.bps101.net/code-conduct

So they already have info about some students actually using drugs, alcohol, and tobacco--and they even expect some students to self-report such use, at least all the students who participate in performance based extra-curricular activities. And there doesn't seem to be any hysteria about how this information is stored, or about it being misused, or violating the student's privacy.

This conduct code, and the disciplinary measures involved, must also reflect what the parents in that district want as well. So, while you might consider them "nosy parkers", your standards might differ from those of the parents and others in this community.

At least with the survey, there was no question that the responses would not result in disciplinary action by the school, or legal difficulties with law enforcement--that was made very clear by the Superintendent of Schools. In that sense, the survey was a lot less threatening and intrusive to students than the school's code of conduct, because the students weren't jeopardizing themselves by their survey admissions, and they could have opted out if they didn't want to take it.

firefly
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:01 pm
@DrewDad,
Quote:
Sure. Because confidential information never leaks, and people in authority never misuse this kind of data.

And, in such cases, involving schools, there are penalties for the disclosures, and the injured/aggrieved party can bring legal actions.

It's crazy going through life mistrusting everyone--including legitimate authorities who have legal and ethical obligations to maintain confidentiality. People would never go to a doctor if that were the case.

And, if your adolescent's doctor or pediatrician asks that child about substance use--tobacco, alcohol or drugs--or risky sexual behaviors--should the child not be honest with the doctor either? Info in a doctor's office can be misused or leaked too.

I prefer not to be overly paranoid. It's a waste of energy.

boomerang
 
  6  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:05 pm
@firefly,
Actually, the parent has to opt their kid out:

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1NfnH-A6pK9sbmDVAzWFL41Ps5feA3evSw2m5kqzmerI/viewform?pli=1

Here's the info that was sent to families:

http://bhs.bps101.net/bhs-social-emotional-survey

I don't know if a written notice was sent too. You'd be kind of left out of the loop if you didn't have a computer....

Like maybe if you were poor....

I'm trying to track down who they bought the survey from ($8,000 according to what I've read) and it seems that it was a group called MHS (multi-health systems) who it kind of looks like might have ties to Pearson.

If they do that would be really interesting since Pearson is the company most schools buy their test materials from, meaning Pearson would have access to a HUGE amount of information on any given student.
hawkeye10
 
  2  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:07 pm
@firefly,
you choose to not see all of the flagrant abuses of power which permeate modern American life.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  4  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:10 pm
@firefly,
It's interesting that you bring up doctors. There was just a big brouhaha here over Kaiser testing a bunch of people for HIV without their consent because they were "just trying to help".

http://www.kgw.com/news/Kaiser-issues-apology-207805531.html
0 Replies
 
firefly
 
  1  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:10 pm
@Mame,
They are going to try to improve communication in that district. This was the letter sent out by the Superintendent of Schools and posted on the high school Web site.
Quote:
Letter from Dr. Jack Barshinger to the BPS101 Community

Dear Members of the BPS101 Community:

During a regularly scheduled Batavia Public School District 101 board meeting this evening (Tuesday), the Board of Education approved a Resolution Authorizing a Notice of Remediation to a Batavia High School teacher. A notice to remedy is a written warning issued by a school board that warns the employee of improper conduct and the possible consequences thereof.

Much of the information that was discussed in closed session is confidential and cannot be shared. Please rest assured that during the review of this employee matter, the Board of Education was given all of the facts, which may or may not be the same as information you may have read in the newspaper or on social media websites.

That said, there is some context that I feel would be appropriate to share.
In this case, District teachers, social workers, guidance counselors, psychologists and others worked together for over a year to select a data-gathering instrument that could be used to determine what social or emotional issues our high school students are experiencing, and whether individual students could benefit from new or increased supportive intervention by our staff. These purposes were shared with our parents and our teachers.

The issue before the Board tonight was whether one employee has the right to mischaracterize the efforts of our teachers, counselors, social workers and others; and tell our students, in effect, that the adults are not here to help, but that they are trying to get you to “incriminate” yourselves.

Disagreement with District initiatives has happened before and it will happen again. What the BPS101 Board does not, and will not support, is any employee giving students false impressions about the motivations of those who come here every day to try to improve the lives of the students entrusted to our care. At no time was student discipline discussed or contemplated as a response to disclosures made by our students.

I understand that some people feel we could have done a better job explaining our goals and a better job working hand in hand with parents on these sensitive issues, and we will. The Board has asked my administration to take steps in the future to increase parental awareness and transparency when gathering data about sensitive issues such as mental health or substance abuse issues. When a plan of action is developed, we have agreed to share those details with our community.

We understand and appreciate the concern shown by our parents and our staff members for the welfare of our students. In all things we do, the best interests of the students must, and will, always come first.

Sincerely,

Dr. Jack Barshinger
Superintendent

http://bhs.bps101.net/node/5379


They will try to improve communication, and I really think that will be the end of it.
firefly
 
  0  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:13 pm
@boomerang,
Quote:
I'm trying to track down who they bought the survey from...

It was Multi-Health Systems Inc., I posted that info earlier.
Quote:
Actually, the parent has to opt their kid out...

The student could also opt out.

No one was compelled to take the survey.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  4  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:15 pm
@firefly,
firefly wrote:
It's crazy going through life mistrusting everyone--

It's crazy to go through life trusting everyone, too.

firefly wrote:
And, if your adolescent's doctor or pediatrician asks that child about substance use--tobacco, alcohol or drugs--or risky sexual behaviors--should the child not be honest with the doctor either? Info in a doctor's office can be misused or leaked too.

There's such a thing as doctor-patient confidentiality. There is no such thing as student-school board confidentiality.

firefly wrote:
I prefer not to be overly paranoid.

I prefer not to be oblivious and naive.
hawkeye10
 
  2  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:17 pm
@firefly,
"when we decide what to do we will let you know" is how the Poliburo ran the CCCP too. Count me as not amused. the full extent of the promise of better working with parents is better explaining according to this letter, not more parent say so.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  4  
Reply Sun 2 Jun, 2013 05:19 pm
@firefly,
firefly wrote:

They are going to try to improve communication in that district. This was the letter sent out by the Superintendent of Schools and posted on the high school Web site.
Quote:
Letter from Dr. Jack Barshinger to the BPS101 Community


Much of the information that was discussed in closed session is confidential and cannot be shared. Please rest assured that during the review of this employee matter, the Board of Education was given all of the facts, which may or may not be the same as information you may have read in the newspaper or on social media websites.



How nice for board of education is able to keep their sessions confidential.

And if the student information turns out to be not so confidential, well, they have legal recourse. Sure they do - six months or a few years down the road after an expenditure of thousands of dollars. And for what? To undo compromised material that can't be undone.
 

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