Sharing is Action

Since we have so much in common these days, we asked some parents in Douglas County how they got involved.  The responses are very interesting and every Jeffco community member should read them. 

 

Vouchers

  • I’m totally opposed to them (and not for religious reasons, I’m a Catholic school grad.)
  • The same as another mom who was opposed to vouchers.  That mom is my hero for her stand on vouchers as are the others who submitted the lawsuits.
  • Opposed to vouchers
  • The voucher disaster
  • I started going to all the voucher program meetings the district had and saw how they pretty much ignored what the public had to say.  Also saw how they misrepresented the truth.  And then it went on and on and on.
  • The voucher snafu

 

Reform

  • I first heard about the corporate reform movement from my teacher’s association before the 2009 election.

 

Friends

  • Another mom asked me if I knew what was up before the election last year.  I had no clue.
  • I knew another mom who was involved.  She told me some things that were happening.  It was around the 2009 board electioon.  I started asking around and then the voucher issues and the 2011 election really got my attention. 
  • A friend of mine who lives in Broomfield – who knows I don’t like ALEC – received an email with a link showing ALEC’s involvement in DCSD and forwarded it to me.  This was several months before my daughter started Kindergarten.  The ALEC connection made me take a 2nd look.  The huge FDK fund balance, while I was paying $4000 for full day Kindergarten made me want to dig deeper into the financials.
  • My son played on a lacrosse team.  I had heard some things about what was happening in the district.  Another mom at lacrosse really opened my eyes at a tournament.  I think this was 2010 and I’ve been involved ever since.
  • I became involved before the 2011 election because another involved mom at our school told me what was happening.  I went to my first candidate forum and really liked one candidate and was not impressed with the other.  Pay for performance, the lack of bond support from our board, and vouchers also fired me up.
  • I heard rumblings of problems in the district for a couple years but didn’t get involved beyond forwarding a more involved parent friends’ email about who to vote for in 2009.  I learned more on SPEAK.
  • I heard from a teacher who was leaving.
  • Once I became involved, I started having small, private conversations with teachers.   

 

Impacts to children

  • Moved from another state and was unhappy with school funding.  Got involved in the school accountability committee and started attending the district accountability meeting.
  • My children attended a charter school and I smelled something fishy and started attending school meetings and DCSD board meetings.  Our school had a hire and fire at will and did the “you will resign or be fired game” that our district does today.

 

Staff

  • I knew someone in the district who was leaving after the new superintendent came along and she couldn’t talk about it without crying.  She was also a mom on my son’s flag football team.
  • I was doing volunteer work with a friend and started hearing about problems.  I got more involved when our Principal was removed.
  • Started hearing more from teachers about how badly they were treated and then SPEAK for DCSD was created, where I learned more and more but I still didn’t do much beyond social media.  After I’d had enough, I joined in.
  • I began hearing it from a teacher I really liked.
  • My child’s teacher told me.  My biggest wish is that someone would have told me sooner.
  • My Principal was fired in 2012, very publicly, even though the district insisted that they don’t discuss personnel issues in public.  My son, then in 2nd grade, was crushed.  A friend had started the Douglas County Parent blog and I would see her posts about our school district that sounded crazy.  My daughter was in preschool.  I didn’t know what BOE was or what they even do.  I got a hint that our Principal was being made an example for doing what he believed was best for kids and being vocal.  Our accountability reps were told that if we tried to fight their decision it would only bring bad press to our school.  Parents got fired up.  A walking protest was organized where I met some teachers who gave me an earful.  I went and spoke at a BOE meeting that night to tell them this was no okay to bully their constituents and employees like this.  One Board Member condescended and denied that hundreds of parents were upset.  Another patronized and ruffled his feathers while another threatened me, in typical fashion, that I may regret having come to speak before the BOE.  I’ve been actively learning and trying to advocate ever since.
  • It was a teacher telling me…on the down low, of course.
  • I no longer have kids in school but have a teacher friend who sent me the link to the SPEAK page, where I began my research, then I found a parent blog.  Following which I was lied to by district staff, so here I am.
  • I wouldn’t say a teacher was the catalyst for me, but the reactions I got from teachers were.  When I started posting things on SPEAK, I started getting thank yous from teachers I knew.  If it was at school, they would whisper to me, obviously afraid of being heard.  When my profile picture was more of a close-up of my face, I even got approached in the grocery store by teachers I didn’t know.  That’s when I knew it was really bad.
  • This teacher became angry at an event because some flyers were being passed out about the reform candidates prior to the election.  Her response was so out of character for her that I started asking questions.  I was appalled then and continue to be appalled.  I’m so thankful she shared with me though.
  • For me, the moment was when outgoing superintendent said some things at a high school meeting in 2009.  I had been hearing some things from veteran teachers and the comments made me realize that bad times were ahead.

 

Politics

  • During the 2009 BOE election, a political party running a slate of candidates for a non-party race made the hair stand up on the back of my neck.  It’s been downhill from there.
  • In Spring of last year, I went to my first peaceful protest.  Shortly after, I was enraged by a robocall from Ted Harvey saying our protests were “like Jimmy Hoffa was born again and moved here to Highlands Ranch.)  I wrote my first letter to the editor and haven’t stopped talking since.

 

Other

  • I can’t answer without feeling nauseous.
  • I went to a BOE meeting and was shocked.  Sent an email and had the “let us explain meeting” with the superintendent.  Then I began my research and involvement.  I hate the lies, deceit and propaganda.
  • I went to a BOE meeting and saw others treated so rudely.  It’s unnecessary.
  • I started seeing our BOE going into Executive Sessions repeatedly and the amount of time increasing at every meeting while public comment was being reduced.

 

Everyone gets involved the same way, once they have the information.  Once people experience the treatment, the lack of transparency, or just are able to watch what is happening at meetings, they understand why others are upset. 

 

Do everyone a favor and share.  Ask them to like our Facebook Page, follow our Twitter account, and share the information from our website.  Join in by contacting us to volunteer and/or donating.  With your help, we have the ability to reach a wider audience.   http://www.supportjeffcokids.org/donations/

Supporting all kids in Jefferson County Colorado