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Thursday, April 2, 2015

What do Couch and Wright do on the school board again? (rough draft)

Look I don’t want to come off as too critical because these are the best two school board members we have. Fischer, Shine and Ashley Smith Juarez are all lost causes. Hall doesn’t seem to have the energy or passion to get things done, most likely she is just a place holder for Betty Burney to run again in 2016 and the jury is still out on Grymes though I have to say my optimism for her dwindles daily.

Couch and Wright are the best things we have going and perhaps that makes them the most disappointing of all as well. You see it seems like they know what is right, not extending Vitti’s contract till all the data is in, Teach for America is a bad deal, we have to push back again charter schools and as you will read in a few minutes that schools need libraries and librarians, yet time and time again the fold when the rubber meets the road.  

This is what they said about the need for librarians which have been dramatically cut by Superintendent Vitti. From the Times union:

School libraries across the country face lean times and librarians are stretched thin. Duval’s school board is weighing whether to hire more library media specialists and whether to expand their roles.

“Media specialists are critical to all schools,” said Paula Wright, a board member who recently decried school libraries’ lack of staffing. “I want to allow children to check out books and use the libraries before and after school, so kids can use the library to study.”

Every school should have at least one media specialist or someone in that role, added Constance Hall, another board member.

…Some board members said that’s not enough; libraries should be open to students more often. For kids without computers at home, that’s an extra disadvantage, said board member Becki Couch.

“Having a media center available for students to use during the day will assist in bridging the gap ... that exists between our students,” she said.

That’s Wright, Couch and even Hall who has had her moments getting in on the importance of librarians action. Saying how important they are and that every school should have one.

You want to know something else? Vitti works for them. If they say librarians are a priority make it happen then he has to make it happen.

Couch and Wright are the best things we have going on the school board and it’s time they stopped talking like it and started acting like it.


  1. Wouldn't it be great if the School Board actually provided some direction and leadership instead of just rubber-stamping whatever Superintendent Vitti says? I'm always happy to read Paula Wright's comments because it seems she might actually have the best interests of students in mind. Sadly, she doesn't seem to have enough influence on the rest of the board members.

  2. They rubberstamp.

  3. Both women are probably seen by their fellow members as problems. They both have a few years more to work with these people and group cohesiveness is important in a town where the business community has endorsed a clearly underrated leader of schools. Couch and Wright will continue to "rubberstamp" probably...but at least they both beg the question. They do not act like everything the superintendent does is excellent and that's....well, that's something when you consider the alternative.