Inequity, not heat, closed Minneapolis schools

  • Article by: ANTHONY NEWBY
  • Updated: September 3, 2013 - 12:40 PM

Let’s be clear. The Minnesota Legislature and the school district failed students.

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badcopperSep. 2, 13 5:51 PM

because of a Legislature that doesn’t care enough about children of color.---- that's a laughable statement. The inner cities have amount the highest per pupil funding of any instructs in the state. WHAT are het doing with the money. Time to audit them.

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sturdlySep. 2, 13 6:23 PM

..... There is no more money......$17 Trillion in recognized (public on hook for trillions more) national debt..... We in MN are among the highest taxed in nation ......and public education is pathetic on the whole, with many notable exceptions ....and not for the lack of trying to improve public education. Too many vested interests....and the neediest suffer the most, but vested interests dominate.... Very sad, as this will get worse before it gets better.....

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rlwr51Sep. 2, 13 6:36 PM

The legislature made it illegal to start school before labor day, which Minneapolis Public Schools decided to thumb it's nose at.

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rlwr51Sep. 2, 13 6:42 PM

I would say that it would be more important to spend money on education rather than on air conditioning, installing it and running it. There is no good reason to start school before Labor Day.... The schools with and without air conditioning have nothing to do with race (Kenwood and Jefferson are two schools without air conditioning). A least one of the buildings taken out of service is equipped with central air.

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brianjapanSep. 2, 13 6:54 PM

Kids are very resilient unlike the author of this article.

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minn12Sep. 2, 13 7:16 PM

A 'tragedy'?? Give me a break. A tragedy is a school shooting. Hot weather for a day or two doesn't come close. The kids will be just fine. No need to get hysterical over it.

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ajnaguySep. 2, 13 7:37 PM

I teach at two MPS buildings at the middle grades level: one old, one newer. I was frankly stunned that they closed buildings Thursday and Friday, because it seemed we were coping just fine. Attendance in my classes at the older, non-air conditioned school, was near 100% all three days, and we were able to go through our beginning of the year nuts 'n' bolts sessions (rules, expectations, grading) pretty easily, so no 'warehousing' was going on. Yes, we have long needed to build some newer facilities in Minneapolis, but any 'heat inequity' is surely in the buildings themselves, as evidenced by schools closing in all areas of the city. Where the pre-Labor Day start is concerned, it's all about when the state decides to test kids -- April, instead of at the end of the year. Many districts are 'front-loading' their school calendars (less time off at Winter Break, no day before Thanksgiving off) in order to get as many instructional days before those all-important tests. MPS tried this last year, and families made it very clear that they wanted two full weeks of Winter Break, and the day before Thanksgiving off as well. The bottom line is, there are a lot of factors at work here, but I don't think this is a cultural issue.

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censormaxxxxSep. 2, 13 7:46 PM

I'm all for equality of opportunity ..not equal outcomes. Minneapolis school district spends 2-3x more per pupil (getting highly disproportionate funding from the Feds and the State to spend like that) in comparison to my school district.

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Flash_GordonSep. 2, 13 7:47 PM

I worked in Anoka-Hennepin where two-thirds of the buildings aren't air conditioned. In 34 years, I never taught in an air conditioned classroom. Yeah, the teachers and kids can tough it out in the heat just like we did when we were kids, but it isn't quality learning time.

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bgronniSep. 2, 13 7:50 PM

When I was a kid we had not AC in cars, houses OR SCHOOLS. Get over it. Mpls spends much more per student than anyone else in the state. why not cut a few counselors, vice principals first? The audit the schools and publish what they spend their money on.

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