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Whitewater School Board Meeting, 9.23.20: 5 Points

The particular path of the pandemic – involving in Whitewater countless thousands of daily interactions between people – is understandably difficult to predict. Nine days after deciding unanimously to resume face-to-face instruction beginning 9.28.20, Whitewater’s school board decided to begin face-to-face instruction on 9.28.20 only for elementary school students, with a hybrid model of instruction…

David Leonhardt on the ‘College Money Crisis’ — Bret Devereaux on ‘The Corner That State Universities Have Backed Themselves Into’

Well worth reading in full — In his Thursday morning newsletter, David Leonhardt of the New York Times writes of The College Money Crisis: The coronavirus has caused severe budget problems for American higher education. But many colleges’ financial troubles are much larger than the virus. They have been building for years and stem, above all,…

Whitewater School Board Meeting, 9.14.20: 5 Points

Updated 9.16.20 with meeting video. At last night’s meeting of the Whitewater Unified School District’s board, the board voted unanimously to offer a choice of either face-to-face or virtual instruction beginning September 28th and continuing through the semester (absent any alterations in the event of significant COVID-19 infections). Parents received, last night, an email requesting…

Whitewater School Board Meeting, 8.24.20: 5 Points

At last night’s meeting of the Whitewater Unified School District’s board, the board heard, among other items, a report on summer school, a report on the district’s use of seclusion and restraint, approved unanimously a new metric the district will use to determine its next instructional plan beginning September 28th, and held a budget hearing.…

Whitewater School Board Meeting, 8.17.20: 5 Points

At last night’s meeting of the Whitewater Unified School District’s board, the board heard (and approved on a 6-0 vote) the online platform for students choosing the virtual instruction and required staffing. (Video, 43:50.)  Some students have chosen a purely virtual format, and much of the board discussion was about an all-virtual provider. The district…

Whitewater School Board Meeting, 8.10.20: 9 Points

At last night’s meeting of the Whitewater Unified School District’s board, the board heard presentations from a consulting epidemiologist and also a former Jefferson County school administrator who now works with Jefferson County. After comment & discussion, the board voted 6-1 to extend the September 1-11 teaching format through 9.25, with the present expectation of…

Whitewater School Board Meeting, 8.3.20: 6 Points

At last night’s meeting of the Whitewater Unified School District’s board, the board heard a presentation from the district about fall instruction for the first two weeks of school, and the metrics the district is considering when deciding schools’ status after those initial weeks. The meeting was informational only, so the board took no action.…

Facebook Discussions as Displays of Ignorance, Fallacies, and Marginal Literacy

In communities in the Whitewater area, assorted Facebook pages (particularly) are a significant means of messaging about politics, culture, etc.  Too often, these messages are evidence of ignorance, fallacies, and are poorly written (to the point of only marginal literacy). Over time, as these rural communities have suffered relative economic decline, they have also experienced a…

The Whitewater School Board’s Decision on Early Fall Instruction: 4 Points

Updates, afternoon of 7.28.20: (1) I’ve added a recording of the 7.27.20 meeting. The best record is a recording. (2) A reader emailed to ask where I stand on recent pandemic-related public actions. On masks, I supported the city’s ordinance (to take effect 8.1) as an unfortunate necessity to preserve safe mobility in the marketplace.…

The Price of Ignorance is Widely Paid

As nationwide chains take sensible measures to require masks, ordinary workers at those chains find themselves the underserving recipients of abuse. Kelli Weill reports Walmart Workers Are Terrified of Enforcing Mask Rules: Even in a time of record unemployment, some of Dan’s colleagues at an Indiana Walmart have walked off the job. They aren’t quitting over…

Local Portents on Addressing the Coronavirus

The Whitewater Unified School District, like every other district in the area, has choices to exercise about holding classes during this pandemic. The district recently sent an email link to a survey soliciting parents’ views, and the new district administrator and veteran school board will soon have important decisions to make. Over in the Jefferson…

Sole Finalist in UW System President Search Withdraws

Kelly Meyerhofer reports today that University of Alaska president withdraws as sole finalist in UW System president search: The sole finalist in the running to lead the University of Wisconsin System withdrew his name from consideration Friday after a months-long search marred with criticism. University of Alaska System President Jim Johnsen, 62, informed search committee chairman…