St. Paul Public Schools superintendent keeps focus on students, she says

Getting ripped in public by the mayor was not the way Valeria Silva wanted to finish her first year as St. Full Story
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Incensed

Barron, WI

#1 Dec 18, 2010
"On the most fundamental issues affecting kids, however, St. Paul continues to do well with some — primarily the white and relatively affluent — and not as well with the poor and students of color.

From 2007, after Silva took over as chief academic officer, through 2010, proficiency among black students rose 6 points in math and 5 points in reading. That's about the rate of improvement for black students statewide, and it outpaces gains in Minneapolis.

But whites have been gaining by similar amounts, leaving the gap in St. Paul between white and black proficiency essentially unchanged, with whites ahead by about 40 percentage points. "

Obviously, the causes of this gap lie outside the school and out of its control. The good news is that all student groups are making progress. Contrary to what we've been told, education is not a race, so let's stop pitting kids and communities against each other.
nick w

Cologne, MN

#3 Dec 19, 2010
well of course the school dosent like it she actually cares about the kids. Keep up the good work Ms.Silva and for all you that think she isnt doing her job well should go back to your tree hugging spota and stay there !!!!!!!!!! I could only wish our superintendent (osseo school district) would fake lessons from superintendent Silva
nick w

Cologne, MN

#4 Dec 19, 2010
well of course the school dosent like it she actually cares about the kids. Keep up the good work Ms.Silva and for all you that think she isnt doing her job well should go back to your tree hugging spots and stay there !!!!!!!!!! I could only wish our superintendent (osseo school district) would take lessons from superintendent Silva (sorry about the typos in the last blog)
nomw

Saint Paul, MN

#7 Dec 19, 2010
Good job Ms Silva. Keep it up. I appreciated you keeping the kids home the second day for their safety. Rather than humiliating you on your excellent judgement call, that prissy mayor of ours should have gotten on his plowing crew and made them clean up a little faster and better. If the cars are in the way, tow them. Plow curb to curb and get the high mounds of snow out of there. The comment you made about the 6 foot drifts and the 3 foot students was perfect. If the mayor would have thought two seconds he would have seen the validity. Again, keep up the good work and don't let anyone push you around.
Erin Failte

Plymouth, MN

#9 Dec 19, 2010
Seeker wrote:
<quoted text>
Pure drivel.
EEJIT. Move to Saint Paul and then comment. Otherwise, shut it.
Erin Failte

Plymouth, MN

#10 Dec 19, 2010
Seeker wrote:
<quoted text>
Pure illiterate drivel.
Nice fragment Einstein, stay in Indonesia.
A Focus OnThe Children

Saint Paul, MN

#12 Dec 19, 2010
Really? My families property taxes are going up 7%. The majority of it based on the the school districts 9.7% levey increase. While my wife and I are strong supporters of the public schools, we find it difficult to swallow even more money comming out of our pockets to pay for what? Lower classroom size, computors for the kids? No, we get to pay for retiree healthcare for someone else! Nothing for the kids here. This is only the beginning. The County, City and School Districts are sitting on a timebomb of future legacy health care insurance and pension obligations which are being paid with our tax dollars. My family is having a hard enough time paying for our own health care and have no guarenteed pension let alone paying for someone elses. Wake up folks, its time to hold our elected, and appointed, public officials accountable.
St Paul Student- Mom

Saint Paul, MN

#14 Dec 19, 2010
Thanks to Ms. Silva for putting our children first and that means Kudo's to you for having the guts to cancel school and not put our children in obvious harms way last week after our 20+ inches of snow.
Jay Kuehn

Minneapolis, MN

#17 Dec 19, 2010
My son is a 1st student bus driver in the St Paul area. He didn't like missing 2 days of pay but was glad he didn't have to manage the padley plowed streets. By Wed he still couldn't get to some of his stops. He had to call St Paul Police to help him back up when 2 buses met on a street nose to nose. No place to go but back up. You can't back up a school bus with kids on it or any other time with out permission. You try it on a narrow street with cars parked on both sides. Also ruts that can make you slide to the side. Get smart & get the streets plowed better kids can slip under the bus wheels off snow banks easy enough keep them home & safe.
Health Teacher

Minneapolis, MN

#18 Dec 19, 2010
With all the cuts to the arts and other programs that teach to the whole child and all the emphasis on standardized tests, I am starting to think we are educating a whole generation of kids who are good at...well, taking tests. Not a lot of higher level thinking skills going on there. Many of our students of color are brilliant - we just don't test in the areas where they excel. Instead to telling parents and kids they "fail" because they don't do well on standardized test, how about we help them utilize the amazing skills and talents they possess? We've got to expand our definition of "proficient".
nick w

Cologne, MN

#19 Dec 19, 2010
hey seeker where are you from i see many diffrent places must not be man enough to put your real town jerk off
teachers stink

United States

#20 Dec 19, 2010
The gates foundation researched the matter of standardized tests extensively and found that in urban districts students who identified their teachers as GOOD TEACHERS
also score high on stadardized tests. The correlation is clear. Bad teachers mean low test scores.

For two generations in MN, colleges have been training "social engineers" and not teachers. The result is that most st. Paul teachers can't teach their way out of a paper bag... and this is clearly reflected in low test scores and culture of racism among st. Paul teachers.
Hard Times

Minneapolis, MN

#21 Dec 19, 2010
Silva has it rough, the budget problem left by the crooked Pawlenty stealing the school money is coming down now on her watch.

Privatization schemes to suck up school tax funds (charters, for profit schools, etc) are selling "Waiting for Superman" movie "hope and change" to people who are getting scammed just like the last "hope and change" guy who gave us perpetual war, transfers of wealth to the upper 1/2% of society, health care subsidy to the insurance companies, no care for the rest of us. The charter school "hope and change" delivers financial scams, limited programs, unqualified instructors, below standard buildings all at a higher cost. Good luck with that.

Meanwhile public schools get unfunded mandates of creationism,(remember T-Paws brainless Dept. of Education Commish? She had to be tossed under the bus.), and now impossible to meet standards that hit public schools much harder than charters.

Gov. Dayton: remove the Dept. of Education appointees and force out the top admins. They are all crooked privateers whose only experience is to steal tax money and school land and hand it over to pals who are developers and scammers. Remember the "MN Business Academy" charter in St. Paul?$11 million in city loans unpaid, a free building (who owns that now?) Kids lives ruined, failure, financial scandal. And St. Paul give the stiff arm now to its own public schools, FOR SHAME.
FL Guy

Cambridge, MN

#22 Dec 19, 2010
She means the unions. All they care about is more pay for their unions. None of these public schools have taken the economic hit the rest of us have and they all suck at teaching children.
Walter Mondale

Saint Paul, MN

#23 Dec 19, 2010
I have confidence in Silva. I think she will do fine as long as that lame duck Mayor Coleman keeps his ego out of her decision making process
Dick L

Saint Paul, MN

#24 Dec 19, 2010
teachers stink wrote:
The gates foundation researched the matter of standardized tests extensively and found that in urban districts students who identified their teachers as GOOD TEACHERS
also score high on stadardized tests. The correlation is clear. Bad teachers mean low test scores.
For two generations in MN, colleges have been training "social engineers" and not teachers. The result is that most st. Paul teachers can't teach their way out of a paper bag... and this is clearly reflected in low test scores and culture of racism among st. Paul teachers.
I think a lot of teachers want to be the students friend rather than teacher. I also think teachers are the scapecoat for bad administrations and poor policys as well as lack of parenting. There are however some lousy teachers out there.
Murph

Darlington, WI

#26 Dec 19, 2010
There is a lot of hypocrisy in politics when "public servants" are constantly hounded and blamed.But the federal senators and congressmen continue to make unfunded mandates.While it is almost certain now that elected officials do not at all serve the public well.Those in the lower rungs of local and city payrolls are doing the best that they can.When you hear those elected officials say that things are improving they are missing the point by a mile and the depth of it entirely.The whole country is just a few missed meals and lost jobs from Congress being duct taped to stop signs! They will no doubt call it anarchy,but what they themselve say and have been doing is a better fit for that monicker.I'll bring the tar,if someone brings the feathers! One stae..one vote.It's time to do it the way it was first concieved.Too many free-loaders at the top!
Lord Haw Haw

Minneapolis, MN

#27 Dec 19, 2010
stick it wrote:
<quoted text>
Why is it always the Republican who thinks and then the Democrat who uses emotion to make such a STUPID statement as the piece of crap writing above. I challenge you to think before you write. You moron. What a load of crap. Why don't you put down your philly blunt and your Iphone and run for Governor if you think everything is pie in the sky. Let me guess you receive Section 8 housing for your 6 fatherless kids and food stamps to feed the little bastards. RIGHT???????? Or you running around in your Caddy selling stolen goods from Sears. Which is it?
Poor baby Republidupe, reduced to blubbering by the facts. Notice, no argument about the facts just
personal attacks. That all you got righty?
Take it Easy

Saint Paul, MN

#28 Dec 19, 2010
"she takes credit for healing relationships with employees"...oh, my goodness.
As a parent of SPPS students and a SPPS employee for many years, I have to strongly, very strongly, disagree. Valeria is deluding herself if she thinks she's "all about the kids." What comes across again and again is that "it's all about Valeria." And also what comes across is that if she disagree with Valeria, you will regret it. Many employees are just trying to keep their head down, stay off the radar...however you want to phrase it - the wisest strategy is not to let Valeria and her inner circle know you disagree with anything, because that is seen as being negative, and you will pay a high price. SPPS used to be a place where people could disagree respectfully, listen to different opinions, and still be collegial. That's not true these days.
Incensed

Barron, WI

#29 Dec 19, 2010
teachers stink wrote:
The gates foundation researched the matter of standardized tests extensively and found that in urban districts students who identified their teachers as GOOD TEACHERS
also score high on stadardized tests. The correlation is clear. Bad teachers mean low test scores.
For two generations in MN, colleges have been training "social engineers" and not teachers. The result is that most st. Paul teachers can't teach their way out of a paper bag... and this is clearly reflected in low test scores and culture of racism among st. Paul teachers.
The correlation is clear: Students with positive attitudes about school perform better academically.

Another correlation that's clear: People with negative attitudes about school tend to
b i t c h an awful lot about teachers and make too many unfounded assumptions. Bet you were a real joy to teach and crapped out on standardized tests.

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