Soon-to-be ex-BA mom

Villa Rica, GA

#87 May 1, 2012
Really, they can't kick you out for not having volunteer hours. They say they can, but they really can't legally. Heard it from the leader of the clan there, Mrs. McDonald. She should know and she's not too keen on letting parents know that there is this loophole.

I do want to say that Brighten is a great place for elementary students, but really think it over for the middle school. It's really not the best option, for so many reasons.
NewDouglasReside nt

Douglasville, GA

#88 May 1, 2012
Parents of course should attend parent/teacher meetings etc and be on the know about their kids progress, help kids do homework / extra activities ... these are the type of involvement we are used to...
but this volunteer job is pretty new to me, my understanding is it's because of lack of finance that they can't hire enough workers.. thank you all for the replies.

why does this thing show my location in tx?:O weird..
Current BA Mom

Duluth, GA

#89 May 1, 2012
We have been at Brighten since the beginning and I know of two families who did leave for not having their volunteer hours. My oldest child who is about to graduate high school went to Bill Arp before attending Brighten. The activities that I involved myself with are the same sort of things that you receive "credit" for at Brighten. ie....going on field trips, sending in supplies, helping in the office/library, just stuff that I assume parents normally would do.
On the other hand, I do have some concerns/advice about the middle school. Our youngest is finishing up Brighten as we speak. I feel that they do get the short end of the stick because they do not have some of the material things that the other middle school kids get to have. IE.....new computers, sports, etc. We don't have a gym, or a real cafeteria. However, we've never had a drug bust, had to confiscate a weapon, break up a real fight, or deliver a student's baby at school. So I think it rocks compared to the alternatives. So pick your battles and move on.
All in all I say Brighten has done us well. Also about the donations of money. We did have one year when it came down to the wire and we were a few hours short. You can pay $100 for each hour you are lacking. It's a tax write off and I say they deserve every penny.
BTW.........Douglas County School System shorted us on over $1 million, and we still have some of the best REAL scores in the county.
Pertinacious

Lithia Springs, GA

#90 May 1, 2012
NewDouglasResident wrote:
Parents of course should attend parent/teacher meetings etc and be on the know about their kids progress, help kids do homework / extra activities ... these are the type of involvement we are used to...
but this volunteer job is pretty new to me, my understanding is it's because of lack of finance that they can't hire enough workers.. thank you all for the replies.
why does this thing show my location in tx?:O weird..
It has nothing to do with a lack of finance. Most of the things we do to earn hours has nothing to do with helping them budget their man hours. I would not let this scare you away at all.

Douglasville is a step up from Brownsville. Welcome!
Soon-to-be ex-BA mom

Villa Rica, GA

#91 May 1, 2012
Best scores in the county?? Not any more. Where did Brighten score in 8th grade writing? Not at the top, where did Brighten score in the 5th grade writing? Not at the top. Many scores have gone downhill since the start of the school. The middle school Science and Language Arts/Reading is the pits. Many students said they didn't have a clue on that test. Granted, they don't have the same behavior issues as the public schools, but then again, they can get rid of the worst offenders at Brighten. But trust me they've had their share of students that bucked the system. And I've yet to hear of any middle school student birthin' babies in the hallways.

Shorted on a million dollars? Maybe, but you can't squeeze blood out of a turnip. And much of the financial ruin that Brighten is in is due to the poor proper planning that put Brighten on a rock and in portables. The "building" is falling down around them and the restrooms are inadequate.
Contrarian

Lithia Springs, GA

#92 May 2, 2012
Soon-to-be ex-BA mom wrote:
Shorted on a million dollars? Maybe, but you can't squeeze blood out of a turnip.
Sure you can. The School Board has been squeezing blood from Brighten's turnip for years now.

Since: Jul 11

Location hidden

#93 May 2, 2012
Soon-to-be ex-BA mom wrote:
Best scores in the county?? Not any more. Where did Brighten score in 8th grade writing? Not at the top, where did Brighten score in the 5th grade writing? Not at the top. Many scores have gone downhill since the start of the school. The middle school Science and Language Arts/Reading is the pits. Many students said they didn't have a clue on that test. Granted, they don't have the same behavior issues as the public schools, but then again, they can get rid of the worst offenders at Brighten. But trust me they've had their share of students that bucked the system. And I've yet to hear of any middle school student birthin' babies in the hallways.

Shorted on a million dollars? Maybe, but you can't squeeze blood out of a turnip. And much of the financial ruin that Brighten is in is due to the poor proper planning that put Brighten on a rock and in portables. The "building" is falling down around them and the restrooms are inadequate.
I heard they were seeking SACS accreditation independently from the school district. There is something to be said about a charter school not holding on to the coat tails of their authorizer. Seems they have chosen to prove themselves on their own merit.
new

Douglasville, GA

#94 May 2, 2012
So no school bus, no gym/sports??
wow.. why can't they have a gym?? that surprises me till I drop... wow
Contrarian

Lithia Springs, GA

#95 May 2, 2012
new wrote:
So no school bus, no gym/sports??
wow.. why can't they have a gym?? that surprises me till I drop... wow
You know, maybe you're not cut out to have a child at Brighten.

I'm thinking that if you really did manage to get your child into kindergarten there that NONE of this would be a surprise to you. So I'll go out on a limb here and say you're trolling for some reason.
new

Douglasville, GA

#96 May 2, 2012
your judgement won't make any difference :|

it does really surprise me that they do not have a gym... that is one of the basic needs in schools in the place where I came from..
Blah Blah

Duluth, GA

#97 May 2, 2012
new wrote:
your judgement won't make any difference :|
it does really surprise me that they do not have a gym... that is one of the basic needs in schools in the place where I came from..
How could you not know they didn't have a gym? Did you go on any type of tour before applying for the lottery? The school is very small and takes about 10 minutes to view. They don't have much but are able to do alot with what they have.
new

Douglasville, GA

#98 May 2, 2012
No I was not offered any tour. We had to move here due to my DH's work. I just found out that there is this charter school which is supposedly better than public schools and checked rating too which is a lot better than the public school my kid would attend if not BA. So I asked a friend of mine to enter my kid's name for the lottery before we moved here. After she was selected we had to provide all the documents and we did. That is why I am trying to find more info about the school..
douglas county teacher

Atlanta, GA

#99 May 2, 2012
There are two good middle schools in this county-Brighton and Chapel Hill. Chapel Hill has better athletics, but not everyone needs in-school sports.

Since: Jul 10

Villa Rica, GA

#100 May 2, 2012
douglas county teacher wrote:
There are two good middle schools in this county-Brighton and Chapel Hill. Chapel Hill has better athletics, but not everyone needs in-school sports.
Actually, I beg to differ that only Brighten and Chapel Hill MS are the only good schools in the county. I'd like to say I've heard positive things about Fairplay, Turner, Mason Creek, and Chestnut Log. Mainly, I have friends who have children at those schools and I've experienced two of those listed with my own children and was extremely happy with their education and social interaction with others. Of course there are some bad apples at those schools, but every barrel has a few, including Brighten. I used to hear some great things about Brighten, but recently (the last couple of years) have heard some discouraging stories about the middle school there (from friends who have their children at this charter school).
ThisGirl

Douglasville, GA

#101 Apr 23, 2013
Wow, Georgia has so many racists. Doesn't help southerners' reputation for being stupid.
kimb

Douglasville, GA

#102 Apr 24, 2013
douglas county teacher wrote:
What percentage of Brighten kids get into IB? Is it higher than the other middle schools?
There are some black children on the waiting list
ba parent

Douglasville, GA

#103 May 11, 2013
kimb wrote:
<quoted text>There are some black children on the waiting list
uh...on the list? they make up the majority of the school. this school was once the place to go, not anymore! it has gone down hill.....fast. now they are only hiring black teachers, not the best qualified. I bet all new hires are black, starting with the first grade teacher they need to hire!
Wrangler

Powder Springs, GA

#104 May 11, 2013
I know some moron that's on the board at this place. If this particular moron is on the board, I can tell you this place probably ain't a very premier place to go.

“Yet another average white man.”

Since: Jun 11

Location hidden

#105 May 11, 2013
ba parent wrote:
<quoted text> uh...on the list? they make up the majority of the school. this school was once the place to go, not anymore! it has gone down hill.....fast. now they are only hiring black teachers, not the best qualified. I bet all new hires are black, starting with the first grade teacher they need to hire!

The demographics of this county have crossed the tipping point. It's a black county now. Get used to it. Douglas county voted for Obama in the last election. Soon there will be enough legal black voters to change law enforcement and bring in Broughton as sheriff. It's no wonder that we're seeing massive white flight since this influx of people was brought about artificially. White people don't like being forced to integrate. So they move further into the hills leaving the rest of us to deal with the realities of the "New South".

For a transplanted Yankee like me it's actually funny to watch. I know white people who blame the black people for what is happening and that's just not true. This whole demographic shift was designed and implemented by wealthy white people who wanted a crop of high-turnover, volatile people to fill the cheap housing and apartments and spend their money on deposits, particle board furniture and cars that won't sell in other counties.

I'm often called a racist for my views on this, but I'm just an outsider who has watched all of this happen since about 1996. Brighten was a great idea and still is. But the founders and early families children are nearly finished so interest in the school for them is nil. Plus the county is blackmailing the school over nearly $1M that should have come from the tax base. So expect Brighten to darken at the behest of the school board and county officers.

Relax, it's just diversity. And "Diversity" just means "less white people". Get used to it.
Grobbbbbbbbbbb
Kelly Cadman

United States

#106 May 11, 2013
My interest in this school is far from nil. It was created as a positive addition to our community, and I assure you, the amount of blood, sweat, tears and money the founding board members, parents and staff have invested wasn't done on a whim or to eek out 5 or 6 years and then to lay it down. We are here for the long haul. Yesterday was Founders Day at the school, where founding board members, staff and students celebrated the original shared vision ... and its continuity.

Brighten has become more and more diverse as our population has increased. With open enrollment and a lottery. There is no way to orchestrate enrollment as you suggested. We serve who comes - with glad hearts, as we are educators.

With respect to achievement, each year our goals have to increase - and we have met or exceeded this increasingly high bar ... despite our changing demographics. The good news is that other schools in our district have stepped up their game and are knocking it out of the ball park, too - that is to be celebrated! The high performing schools need to get together, figure out what is working across the schools and disseminate that to the struggling schools. We have to stop damning the struggling parts or our community and start working together for achievement for all. I know that Brighten is committed to that and hope others are as well. We cannot work in silos anymore and expect improved outcomes.

It does not really matter who we serve as our community changes and expands. Every kid deserves the best we can give them. And if we ever want to break the cycle of poverty, we MUST ensure this happens. Together.

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