Movie Profiles Innovative Tucson School

ScreenHunter_34 Nov. 17 22.16 Watch out, Chicago! Here comes Bob Compton's hard-hitting documentary, Two Million Minutes, guaranteed to frighten and make you feel bad about the current state of American education.  Or maybe that was the first one.  Compton "searched the globe for the greatest high
school in the world. A school that instills creativity, critical thinking and prepares its students
for the tomorrow's workplace. To his amazement he found it in a strip mall in Tucson, AZ."  Wednesday 12-2 6pm Music Box Theater. Details here.

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  • no big deal here or threat AR! I have seen this second film and it is not threat--it is not a documentary either.--I hope people go see it--it stole the 'gifted' and high scoring children away from the neighborhood schools--very FEW minority attend this school. So go see it and see the lack of color for yourself. Also, they do not tell you that they do expell students who do not 'work out' at this school, this was admitted later after the film was made.

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    this dirty little secret is standard practice for charters - under-reported on similar 'success stories' here in chicago. when is the consortium going to make a bold move and dig in on charter expulsion rates?

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    Dear District299Reader:

    As a teacher for BASIS, the school depicted in the
    documentry 2 Million Minuites, I believe I can attest
    for the verasity of the film.

    First, we accept all, repeat all, students who apply
    and that there is space for. We do not select students
    on the basis of skin color, or the neighborhood they
    come from, whether or not they have a roof over their
    head, or any other meaningless and arbitrary condition.

    The state of Arizona mandates that we accept any student
    who applies. And we do. Unlike many schools that have a
    particular political agenda to fulfil, or quotas based on
    race or economic circumstnces.

    As far as minority representation, we do not (we are prohibited by state law, as mentioned above) recruit
    students because they have the gvt. or pressure group
    approved skin color.

    And, we do not expell students because "they do not work
    out". Students leave when they find that our demanding
    schedule is more that they are willing to tolerate.

    Might be a good idea to get the facts before you shoot off
    your mouth!

  • Paras Bhayani teaches at a charter school on Chicago's south side.
    Posted: November 20, 2009 10:23 AM - teaching math...

    Will Illinois Education 'Race to the Top'? There's Hope on the Horizon

  • Sorry Mr. Bhayani--I will not take my child to an uncertified doctor. I do not want my child sitting in a class for hours with an unlicensed teacher.
    AND why were there 2 police cars and 1 police wagon at the Basil Campus at 11:30 on Friday?

  • Does Ron know that is an SE elementary student fails a benchmark grade that they are NOT allowed to come back to the SE school? How unfair is that that the student who

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    How fair would it be to allow that student to continue attending when he is obviously not capable of doing the work required by an SE school. And how often does that actually happen in real life?

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    it would be fair to KEEP the child in the SE OR lottery school--this is THEIR student, they should have to keep THEIR student--period. IN the SE school, the student tested to get in and had gotten a deserved seat--if he fails, the SE SCHOOL has failed him and MUST keep this child. As for lottery schools, the parent 'won' the seat and the child should be able to stay evenif they have to repeat a grade. Above poster has goofy thinking here.

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    As posted earlier--I bet Ron does not even know this happens and these schools are real good and 'couseling' the parents to get the kids out of their school. Failures and special ed student NOT wanted here!

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    Does anyone actually want failures?

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    SE schools are not that enchanted. Children are children with their ups and downs. Schools succeed, even SE schools, because they take care of their kids: emotionally, physically, academically, socially. SE schools have done their share of rescuing too as children in their care go through divorce, abuse, illness, dealing with death, etc. - all those elements that can affect academics. There are many unsung heros you don't hear about. Unfortunately, if some of the people who blog here did know, they'd probably try to poke 'em in the eye. For being SE.

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    Kids are kids, and SE kids and schools are by no means enchanted or perfect. HOWEVER, speaking as the parent of a magnet ES and SE HS graduate, and as a neighborhood school teacher, I can say that many of the differences are stark indeed.

    Kids are kids, but my child's school always had a full-time librarian, art and music. Two of the schools I have taught in have had no music teacher at all. One lacked a full-time librarian. My child never had to deal a school that did not have enough textbooks. In fact, during high school, there was a classroom set, plus a book issued to each child to be kept at home, for most classes. As a teacher, I have not once been able to send books home with children to be read outside of school. Every single bit of reading that I have assigned has had to be done in class. There was also adequate technology in the building to allow teachers to truly be creative in terms of integrating technology into their lessons.

    My child never felt unsafe traveling to and from school or walking the halls in school. She was also able to eat healthy food that she enjoyed in school because I (and later, of course, she) packed her lunches. In schools where I teach, students are not even permitted to bring a lunch, and there are no facilities for storing food brought from home.

    At my child's school, nobody got on the loudspeaker at the end of each day to yell at the kids to get off the school grounds and go home. Students routinely stayed late to interact with teachers and classmates, and to participate in activities. Before-school tutoring was available as well.

    The school buildings were clean, cheerful and welcoming.

    High school students actually had a choice as to which foreign language they wished to study, and had the option to study that language for longer than the bare minimum requirement of two years. There was more than one social studies elective to choose from, so that the title of "elective" was actually an accurate one for the course offerings. There was enough money for a whole class, rather than just a select few students to participate in field trips, so that the educational value of such trips could truly be integrated into the curriculum.

    I am a single parent, and the life of my family has certainly not been without significant challenges. There were plenty of serious school-related issues in addition to those that arose outside of school. However, the resources available to us can barely even be dreamed of in the buildings and communities where I have taught and continue to teach. I don't resent anyone "for being SE." However, my students have the same human potential, hopes and dreams that my child and her classmates have, and just as much of a right to have access to the resources needed to help them grow, learn and succeed.

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    My experience is a little different. The neighborhood school I taught at was nice. My child also went to a SE while I taught in the projects in a neighborhood which continues to gentrify. The Board President went to jail about this time for tax evasion. My school had a clinic and a fulltime nurse, three well stocked science labs, a math lab, a computer lab, a French teacher, and because we had taken children to Africa for several years during the summer (our dance group was a joy to watch and did excellent fund raising), the hall ways were full of African art and beautiful mosaics. Our library was great. Our test scores good and getting better. Our families were loved. It was one of the first schools closed under the new plan.

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    SE still get more 'breaks' than the inner city neighborhood schools and with selective enrollment being SELECTIVE from minute 1, that is a big advantage right there. You do not hear of any shady deals to get into Wells or Julian....

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    "Hard hitting documentary..."

    The trailer looks like Michael Moore mated with Ayn Rand and developed the screen play while working for Rand. It looked to me like a vapid American girl juxtaposed against Chinese kids doing military calisthenics to a dramatic music track. BTW, I think it might lean a little too heavily on the barely literate comments of a bunch of Bush era losers.

    Hard hitting documentary...

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