You accompanied a loved one to an appointment with a cardiologist. Both of you were already aware that your family has a history of heart disease, but your loved one recently learned that they have diabetes. The family doctor referred your loved one for a consultation.
The examination room is impersonal and eerily quiet. Suddenly the door opens, and the doctor appeared. With your loved one’s chart in his hand, he peered at your loved one and declared, “no excuses,” before leaving without saying another word.
After the dooor had closed, you both realized that he never even took his hand off the doorknob.
Such an anecdote represents today’s corporate based education reform movement. It seems that none of its champions cannot make a presentation without evoking the “No Excuses” challenge.
Take Emily Sirota, a candidate for the Denver School Board. Sirota’s piece yesterday in the Huffington Post was filled with the usual campaign jargon, but whether she wanted to or not, she revealed herself to have many of the narrow views that has kept the reform movement from gaining many allies in the community which actually teaches.
Put simply, we are facing an education emergency in Denver and people clearly want new school board leaders who haven’t been a part of the problem. They want a school board member who brings new ideas and new experience to the table.
It’s time to start prioritizing our parents’ concerns, not the special interests of professional politicians. It’s time to address our children’s needs, rather than playing politics. It’s time for a school board that listens and that has the independence and courage to push the right kinds of changes in DPS — the kind of changes that involve the whole community and don’t just make more excuses for failure.
This is why I’m running for the school board in District 1 — because I’m a concerned parent who is sick of the DPS administration’s canned excuses and who knows it’s time for change.
I’ll be the first to admit to you that I’m not a candidate who represents the DPS status quo — I come to this race with a different kind of experience than those insiders who seek to keep making excuses for failure
It should be noteworthy that Sirota needed to use “excuses” three times within three short paragraphs. It’s in a manner which indicates a troubling fixation. For Sirota, “excuses” clearly is a guiding principle with which she will be making decisions with.
While no one can be sure what Sirota’s true intentions are, her closing statement doesn’t jibe with her campaign theme.
……….It’s time for change. It’s time for a leader who listens.
Anyone who uses ”excuses” as freely as does Sirota, isn’t someone who plans on doing much listening. Like the cardiologist who saw your loved one, Sirota exemplifies today’s school reform movement. None of them take their hand off the doorknob.