Monday, October 15, 2007

Background checks on parent volunteers

This month CEO Tom Brady issued a notice (see here -- we should have the memo on the Parents United website) that schools needed to have a battery of forms on file for parent volunteers, among them a criminal background check and child abuse clearance. At a time when we're trying to balance safety issues with encouraging parents to feel welcome at a school, does this new policy mandate stifle parent engagement or is it a necessary measure?

Changes in the high school selection process

This month Parents United for Public Education and more than 16 parent organizations and bodies succeeded in changing the District's plan to scrap the multiple acceptances policy. Because of a rushed timeline, the District agreed to allow multiple acceptances this year only. But Parents United remains concerned that the District might remove this choice option next year. Administrators have termed multiple acceptances a "redundant step" and say it holds up the District's budgeting timeline. What do you think?