Public School Choice Options, NOT offered as required by LAW!

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Public School Choice Options, NOT offered as required by LAW!

Post  HopefulInPh on Thu Nov 11, 2010 8:06 pm

After the November 1st school board meeting a Penn Hills resident asked board president Joseph Bailey why the Penn Hills School District had not offered Public School Choice to students attending the 4th grade at Penn Hebron, and to the students attending the Linton Middle School.

Mr. Bailey directed the question first to Dr. Vak(Interim Superintendent),then to Renel Williams (Director, Elementary Education).

Ms. Williams contacted the Pennsylvania Department of Education and received clarification from the PDE, that indeed the Penn Hills School District was in fact required by Law to offer the students in grades 4th - 8th Public School Choice options.

With Clarification , the District "then" (After November 1st) began an effort to enter into cooperative agreements with other Public School Districts in the area to accept its students as transfers.
(The District is also require to attempt to enter into agreements with charter and virtual schools in the State)

7 School District were contacted, 2 could not accept Penn Hills students because of their own school status. The other 5 Districts would not accept Penn Hills students, which is no surprise considering we are already well into the school year.

Would any of the 5 schools contacted have accepted transfers from the Penn Hills School District "IF" contacted before the start of the school year? Were there other years when students in the district were denied their right to Public School Choice?

We will never know because the District was not aware, choose to ignore or misunderstood Federal Laws outlined in the NCLB act.

Also, if Federal Laws had been followed parents of students in grades 4th -8th would have been given "before the start of the school year" information on their options of charter and virtual schools in the State. Which STILL should be an option given to them.

At the School board meeting on November 8th it was brought to light that Ms. William had in fact given the School Board a copy of the NCLB Act prior to November 1st.

It must be noted that Ms. William has shown great integrity in accepting full responsibility for this atrocious error.

Has the Penn Hills School Board accepted any responsibility?

When a resident asked the board if they had READ the NCLB act that was submitted to them by Ms.Williams.

School Board President Joseph Bailey's sentiments were...that he is not a proponent of the No Child Left Behind Act.

When it was asked why the board had not caught Ms. Williams error? (Considering they were all given a copy of the NCLB Act)

Board Member Margie Krogh's sentiments were... it was not the board's job.

Children in the Penn Hills School District deserve all the options available to them by LAW so that they can succeed academically.

The Penn Hills School District should be held accountable for not following Federal laws that were put in place to help protect our children from failing schools.

Please cut/paste and e-mail to anyone you know that has a child in the Penn Hills School District.

Parents should know their rights.
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HopefulInPh
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