Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Proposed 2012-2013 PPSD calendar

Up above is the draft version of the 2012-2013 Providence Public Schools academic year calendar that was supposed to be approved at last night's school board meeting. Click on the image to see a larger version. It's available as part of the publicly posted school board meeting agenda, which can be found here: http://www.providenceschools.org/pesb/.

However, this calendar wasn't approved because only three of nine school board members were in attendance - not a quorum, so they could not vote. Three out of nine! I don't know which three were there. Thanks for showing up, whoever you are. And the rest of you? What's the deal? Who am I to ask, you could ask - after all, I wasn't there either. But hey, I'm not on the school board.

School board members, show up so that business can get done, even basic business such as approving this calendar. Families urgently need this information in order to plan our summers. Let's assume it will be approved as is, which means that the first day of school will be Tuesday, August 28.

I'll guess that approving this calendar was not even the most urgent business that needed to get done. But because it's what I was waiting for, I'll invest a few minutes in this little fuss, and also offer up the draft as a likely indicator of what next year looks like for our kids.

And while I'm in ranty territory, I'll hang out here a bit longer to ask why Providence School Board meetings (and other public meetings) aren't broadcast on the web for people to view if they cannot attend. Due to family obligations, I can't often make it to school board meetings. If the meetings were webcast, you can be damn sure I'd tune in, or at the very least watch recordings. That the ProJo nor other local media do not cover the school board meetings is frustrating, too - though the need for such coverage would be less urgent if we were able to take advantage of easily implemented technology to make the meetings more accessible--and the school board more accountable--to many more citizens.

I imagine I'm not the only one who wants this and I would love to know if there's any energy inside (or outside) City Hall to put school board and perhaps other meetings online. If not, why not?

Now leaving Rantopolis.

UPDATE: The ProJo, object of my complaining, did report on the meeting nonattendance. Thanks for that, and the the story shares that Keith Oliveira, Nina Pande, and Barbara Wong were in attendance last night. Thanks for bringing this to my attention, Tom.

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