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Pleasanton school district begins move toward teacher coaching

Original post made on Apr 12, 2013

The idea of switching from specialists who have direct contact with students to instructional coaches for teachers may be worrisome to both Pleasanton parents and teachers, but the district is going ahead with its plan.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, April 12, 2013, 7:32 AM

Comments (9)

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Posted by Concerned Parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 12, 2013 at 8:48 am

This idea is nuts! Teachers are already overwhelmed with today's class sizes and the demands put on them by the number of "special needs" students in their classes (some real special needs and some fake special needs - i.e. those that need extra attention and extra time on thier tests because they don't study because sports and goofing off requires lots of time). Also, the lack of discipline in today's classrooms, because school administrators don't support the teachers in dealing with unruly students, is a real problem. Instruction and learning is taking a real hit, becuase so much of teachers' time must be devoted to special needs, unruly students, helicopter parents, tuned-out parents, and lazy administrators. Mainstreaming to the extreme needs to be reexamined. And no, I am not a teacher. Just a concerned parent.


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Apr 12, 2013 at 11:07 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Palo Alto has Teachers on Special Assignment (TOSAs): Web Link They have tended to be teachers from the district that take time (sometimes years) away from the classroom. They work with all teachers in their area, not just struggling teachers. From what I could see, they had the respect of their peers.

Even having seen the benefits of PAUSD'S program, I continue to wonder about (a) district communication (or lack thereof) with parents and teachers to explain and support this change, and (b) an apparent lack of "ears" on the governance team when it comes to hearing what parents and teachers value most for students.


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Posted by crazy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 12, 2013 at 11:36 am

These 8 teacher trainers are sure to cost the district close to a million dollars in salary and benefits. They could have saved approx two class levels of CSR with this money, and CSR is where the money came from to pay for this. CSR is subsidized by the State, so the cost per teacher is very low.

This is not a district that has many struggling teachers. And if they are trying to get more kids with special needs into the regular classroom, I would suggest more actual TEACHERS.


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Posted by Resources Needed
a resident of Birdland
on Apr 12, 2013 at 8:24 pm

At Alisal one of my kids was pulled out for resources - both my kids have English as a second language starting at 5+ years of age. I had to fight for an IEP in 5th grade because CLAD obviously wasn't working and there were no more resources. All of you who liked Hansen & Dwyer - that's good - however, at HP it was news to them that my son was an English Language Learner. After I signed a form at the end of 6th grade saying son should stay in the English Language Learner class, he was mainstreamed with no resources. The English teacher, Deborah Lawless, was FANTASTIC!!!! He went from 4th grade to 6th grade level - then in 8th grade his teacher went out on disability and he had substitute after substitute. In Feb. of 7th and 8th HP was surprised my son was ELL - and he was a 3 or 4 in each area of the test (level 5 means they can kick you out of resources - he only reached that as a senior.) The 7th grade - no teacher was informed. The 7th grade science teacher thought son was just a clown. Finally, I told him my son's views about lasers that this fellow had just taught. Finally, the teacher realized that there was an English problem, not a discipline problem. Neither Hansen nor Dwyer ever helped. There were no resources - mandated from the state that there should be.

Dwyer had a bully and 5 kids bullied & their parents come in to hear the bully's mom spout out. All but son had been suspended. Son stood up to bully and if the bully wanted a fight, it would be off campus. Parents were overjoyed that he learned when to walk away from a fight and walk away with dignity.

AVHS - no official resources - kids are tiered and yes, my son was in the lowest tier which is why he aced in English but couldn't pass the English standardized test for college so he took remedial English & English concurrently. He passed the 10th grade tests the first time - that 10th grade test is about 8th grade level.

Pleasanton needs pull outs for remedial classes. They have tried and failed already to have teachers do it. May be Deborah Lawless should teach all teachers how to do it - she's the only one I've seen who did it and kept all the other kids engaged to their own potential.

Don't shell out money to consultants - most of the teachers in the classroom can't do it. Resource teachers are NEEDED!


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Posted by crazy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 12, 2013 at 9:40 pm

You should be able to learn a language in a couple of years if you live in the country where it is spoken - you've asked for way too much and aren't helping enough at home or in your own private way.


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Posted by No way
a resident of Avila
on Apr 12, 2013 at 9:54 pm

Your kids were enrolled in ESL at age 5+ and still needed ELD in middle school? There's clearly a lot more going on than you're telling us. Your kids should have been mainstreamed and reclassified as English proficient before high school, at least. Your story doesn't add up, Resources Needed.


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Posted by Sounds true to me
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 12, 2013 at 10:43 pm

Concerned Parent who signs the last sentence as "just a concerned parent" sounds to me like a burned out school administrator, probably a principal, or school board member or both. If you are so angry at everyone, why don't you go get a job in another district? Or find another line of work. I hear that the new Walmart grocery store is opening.

The saga that Resources Needed has to deal with sounds very typical and true to me.


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Posted by Andrea
a resident of Birdland
on Apr 14, 2013 at 7:03 pm

These teachers are just lazy


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Posted by Karen
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Apr 15, 2013 at 2:47 pm

Hmmm.....sounds like a waste of money. I think what we need instead is school counselors. How about using that money to pay for school counselors? Shouldn't administrators be "teacher coaches?"
Isn't that what inservice days are for?


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