Race of the combatants not important — until they’re penalized!
Can you find what is missing from principal
Skinner’s Smith’s account to parents?
February 7, 2023
Dear East High families,
… Today, I am writing to inform you of several altercations that took place in two parts of our building, and for which assistance from the City of Madison Police Department was requested.
During the lunch hour, a conflict took place by the athletics entrance that involved several male students; concurrently, a separate altercation involving female students occurred in the same area. Staff intervened immediately and worked to de-escalate each incident.
However, per protocol, and given the number of students both directly involved and in proximity, MPD was called to the school. Both situations were resolved by the time officers arrived, and no injuries were reported; because some of the students involved were unaccounted for, officers remained in the neighborhood, patrolling nearby streets.
Shortly following those altercations, a third, unrelated, fight started in the cafeteria among a group of female students, at which time MPD was summoned back to the building. Again, staff de-escalated the conflict, no injuries resulted, and calm was restored by the time law enforcement officials arrived a second time. All of the students who took part in these events have been identified, their families have been notified, and we are in the process of determining consequences in line with our Behavior Education Plan.
Incidents such as these are unproductive, distressing, and disruptive, not only for those who engage in them, but for everyone in our school. …
Mikki Smith, principal
Madison East high school
What we know and what we do not
O.K., class, what is missing? You there, waving your hand frantically. That’s right, the race of the fighting students! White, black, latino, oriental, indigenous American, Pacific islander? They don’t say.
Your irascible bloggeur cares not one whit about their race. But the suits at Doyle Administration Building most certainly care! To the uber-Woke school board race trumps education, as the watering down of honors programs indicates. School board president Ali Muldrow, for instance: “Our community gets really frustrated hearing folks talk about equity but not seeing the result of that talk be equitable.”
Repeat after Blaska: behavior matters, not race! We help no one if we excuse or blame race for behavior.
After 8 years of Restorative Justice
Muldrow was indignant that black students continue to be “disproportionately” penalized. In just the first semester this school year, 242 of the 445 middle school students facing suspension were black. That’s over one-fifth (22%) of all black middle school students compared to only 9% of the entire middle school enrollment. In the high schools, 217 of the 372 suspended students were black, accounting for 15% of all black students in high school — three times the rate of students overall. (The disparity would be greater if the district measured black versus all other students.)
We would not know, for instance, of the race of the 16-year-old girl who stabbed a 14-year-old boy in the heart (almost killing him) on 01-17-23 after a squabble among students at Sherman middle school earlier that day. Except that the girl is being tried in adult court where jail inmate (sorry Sheriff Barrett!) photos are public record.
It is not permitted to speculate that this or that cohort
disproportionately engages in injurious conduct!
Can anyone make sense of this statement from school board member Nichelle Nichols?
“We’re going to train our way, we’ll foundational practice our way — we’ve been doing this for years trying to get all of the adults and our students to get it, what progressive discipline is, what it looks like, sounds like. We’ve been doing this since we basically moved to the Behavior Education Plan.”— “Suspensions rise, disparities remain in MMSD’s first semester”
→ for extra credit: “Madison’s school behavior plan needs a report card.”
Four years ago, Blaska ran on a platform of returning control of schools to their principals and classrooms to teachers. Absent his wise counsel, Madison public schools are going in the opposite direction. Now they’re hiring a coordinator of progressive discipline. Another racial equity bureaucrat!
Blaska’s Bottom Line: No matter how much educrats “foundational practice their way,” the school district’s Behavior Education Plan has been failing ever since then-superintendent Jennifer Cheatham introduced it in 2014. If MMSD is going to track disciplinary procedures by race it should report incidents by the same metric.
Maybe if they took the participants to the gym and suited them up with gloves and head gear and let them go one on one they could get a handle on this. I don’t know what you do with the 19 year old that shot himself in the parking lot of the west side community center. Funny they didn’t find the gun. It must have been passed along.
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” I don’t know what you do with the 19 year old that shot himself in the parking lot of the west side community center.”
Lefty’s sure taken a Ho Hum attitude toward that episode of Gun Violence most foul, haven’t they?
Wouldn’t be because the…um…participants tested Melanin Positive…would it…?
Your Bottom Line is 100% correct. They do not use the same metrics when reporting incidents. I brought that up when my sons attended Badger Rock Middle School. At that time I was involved in the Governance Council for the school. As “Educators” you would think they would be able to figure that out. To me, “Equality” has no race. There are rules and there are consequences. Remember, facts do not care about your feelings! The fact is that MMSD does NOT appear to desire any conversation regarding the facts.
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“O.K., class, what is missing? […] That’s right, the race of the fighting students!”
The talented UW journalism Professor Sue Robinson (who [she/they/ze] is reportedly black):
“Race needs to factor into EVERY SINGLE DECISION being made on the (Madison School) board,” (bolds/caps/italics mine)
Looks like the decision to decline to report this factored in race, am I right…?
Probably those darned Norwegians.
Newsflash: High school kids get into fights. That’s hardly “man bites dog” material.
A fight at Sherman middle school devolved into a stabbing later that afternoon. Does that get you to barking?
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