During classroom instruction?
You can hear the frustration in the text message from yet another teacher in Madison’s public schools — this one at Memorial high school.
I’m reaching out to beg you to have a conversation with your student about cell phone use during class. Since returning from my parental leave, I’ve been hopelessly fighting with students about using cell phones during direct instruction and class activities. Many students are using their phones to play games or watch videos during the entirety of the class period. Students often have headphones on or air pods in while I’m leading the class … sometimes I wonder if they even notice that I’m in the room.
Her plea follows a newspaper letter from two former school board members (both of the liberal Democratic pesuasion) who served before critical race theory took over our schools. Whereupon, the Head Groundskeeper posed the following interrogatory to the newest school board member, Laura Simkin, elected in April 2022:
Laura, are you going to put up before the school board a policy that cell phones [or smart phones] must be turned in before the beginning of the school day and be returned at the end of the school day? Ms. Simkin, it does not matter if you have enough votes. You need to put it up and call the roll.
Laura Simkin showed that she IS listening. She responded today:
Thanks for reaching out with this question. I will either be proposing or supporting an enforceable policy that eliminates the presence of student cell phones in classes.
It’s not just students ignoring their teachers. Seems to be district policy to ignore the taxpayer. Wisconsin State Journal reports, “For the second time in less than two weeks, the Madison School District is being sued over its response to a public records request.”
The conservative Milwaukee-based Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty, or WILL, filed suit Thursday asking a judge to order the district to release staff training materials entitled “LGBTQA+ 101.” The suit comes after the district’s teachers union, Madison Teachers Inc., filed suit May 9 alleging the district violated Wisconsin’s public records law by failing to fulfill a Nov. 3 records request for information on staff benefits and contracts.
Blaska Policy Werkes still awaits a school district response to our request for information; that being: Restorative Justice is now eight years old. It is working? What do the measurable show, if any? That request was made back in February.
Blaska’s Bottom Line: Change comes slowly but never unless you push. This would be the first hint of student discipline in who knows how long?