It was a day of big decisions...but they felt so good.
The easy one was whether or not to continue with the alignment efforts of the area consortium. This was a resounding "No." They have no plans and will not make any until we commit subs. That doesn't sound very promising to us. Shouldn't they want to sell their program? Tell us why we can't afford not to participate? But they haven't a plan for doing the work---let alone addressing any issues that come up. We know that there will be problems with relying on the FOSS kits alone. FOSS is good science. As far as the consortium is concerned, that should be enough. Who cares if it addresses the state standards?
We also decided to walk away from the consortium and manage our own program. The superintendent will actually have to deliver the bad news at some point in the future, so today was spent getting all the pieces lined up for him. The other science specialist and I laid out the plan over the next four years, along with the costs (as best we can forecast).
The really rebellious part of all of this is that when we walk away, we're going to ask others to come with us. We also spent today drawing up the invitations. I don't know how many area districts will accept, but the fact that we can offer them a plan and provide them something to share with their superintendents is very promising...because we know the consortium has nothing to provide in that arena. Oh, and there's about $80,000 of money that the Navy is managing that we're also going to draw away from the consortium.
Did I mention that the consortium is in the midst of building a brand new building to house the science kits? And the media supplies for all curricula? And that we may leave the media contract, too? This is going to be one pissed-off consortium. We're not making these choices out of spite. We're making them so our kids can have the kind of quality education they deserve. ¡Viva La Revolución!