Afrodita Constantinidis, 30, is a dispatcher for an air freight company, and is representative of the Socialist Workers Party. She received her B.S. from Federal City College.
1. Achievement: Achievement is geared chiefly to motivation. Motivated students have a higher potential for achievement than those not motivated. And motivation is linked to social security, social opportunity and approval.
The lack of achievement and corresponding lack of motivation among black and Latino students in the District are due to general conditions of impoverishment and lack of opportunity bred by a racist system.
My campaign stresses funneling more of the budget dollars to schools in the black areas of the city to bring them up to the level of those in the better-off upper Northwest. But the problem of motivation and achievement is closely tied to social conditions: when the black student comes home to a welfare or chronically unemployed family, there is an obvious brake on motivation and outlook.
2. Programs: Rather than have a goal of holding down spending, school officials should be working to ensure that the grade of education in the District is improved. Just the opposite is accomplished by cutbacks in spending for programs and massive teacher layoffs, as have been proposed for the coming school year.
Programs that should be cut are those encouraging District collaboration with the CIA as was revealed at Ballou High, plans to bring back ROTC, and the hiring of truant officers and school corps and guards.
Otherwise, there should be a general expansion of existing programs, with black and Latino community control over them to ensure that they are non-racist, non-sexist, and relevant to the community's needs.
3. Priorites: My main priority would be ensuring that the desires and aspirations of the black and Latino communities are represented to the education of black and Latino students. Their desires have long been ignored by the present and past school boards, who have sought more to please the representatives of white business interests in the city rather than those who voted themselves into office. Another priority would be to ensure that there is adequate funding for full staffing of the schools - no teacher layoffs - and the programs in the schools. I would also encourage the teaching of the oppresssion and abuse of blacks, Latinos, and working people in society, and stimulate the organization of a movement to bury that oppression.
Stuart Rosenblatt, 26, is director of the U.S. Labor Party, Washington local office, and is unemployed. He received his B.A. at Swathmore College, Pa.
1. Achievement: There must be dramatic innovations in curriculum towards the sciences. Students must be oriented toward the kinds of creative breakthroughs needed to bring in and assimilate a nuclear based economy. Provided there is a debt moratorium in D.C. as there may be in Cleveland we can free up the money needed to cut class size, bring in modern experimental facilities and restore budget cuts. By restoring a sense of prupose in industrial progress, children will be motivated to learn as in the post-Sputnik era. Ben Franklins making the achievements of a nuclear era.
2. Programs: I indicated the areas of the sciences that should be expanded. If cuts need to be made they should be done in the liberal arts, with courses like "sociology" or "political science" being the first to go. All courses in "environmentalism" or "homosexuality" should be halted. These encouraged the worst tendencies towards magic and unconscious fears that exist in young people. In a time of crisis what is not needed is to reinforce infantile fears ("We can't build a nuclear power plant; it will kill the louseworts") but rather to strengthen the creative problem-solving faculties best reflected in scientific achievement.
3. Priorities: I would insure all dope was wiped out of the schools and all "decriminalization" legislation halted. I would fight for a city-wide debt moratorium to free up funds for education and other services; followed by a new national bank to keep the expansion booming. In curricula I would fight for a return to the sciences and classics in the humanist tradition (Shakespeare, Milton, Beethoven). I would hope to ensure a sense of replacing the current "lost generation" of youth with a generation of the brightest minds the country has created, to solve cancer, to explore the universe.
Frank Shaffer-Corona, 34, was formerly a legislative analyst at the National Center for Community Action and is currently unemployed. He attended Howard University.
1. Achievement: No longitudinal research has come to my attention that indicates a competency-based curriculum affects standardized test scores. Nevertheless, I believe that achievement levels will be raised if (1) the CBC is implemented on a system-wide basis; (2) adequate funding is provided for the school system; (3) a comprehensive system of performance evaluation is implemented for teachers, principals and administrators; (4) the results of the performance evaluations are acted upon; (5) promotion and graduation standards are enforced and (6) students who need extra help to meet promotion and graduation standards receive it.Criterion-referenced tests and norm-referenced tests (standardized tests) will be part of CBC.
2. Programs: School enrollments are declining and the mayor and the council are not willing to fully fund the board of education's budget. Unless enough citizens organize to demand adequate funds for the schools, this situation will persist. If there are not adequate funds the board must first make more effective use of available resources. It may then be necessary to make hard choices among competing demands for scarce resources. At this time I am not approaching service on the board with pre-conceived notions about areas of the budget to be slashed.The task requires detailed information from the school administration about fiscal options.
3. Priorities: My main interests and priorities as a board member are (1) raising student achievement through system-wide implementation of the competency-based curriculm, (2) securing adequate funds for the schools, (3) implementing an effective performance evaluation process for staff, (4) improving student discipline procedures, (5) developing board policy in such areas as parent involvement and better reporting to citizens about student, staff, and school performance, (6) increasing in-service training for staff, including teachers, principals, and administrators, (7) insuring that promotion and graduation requirements are enforced and that students needing extra help receive it and (8) increasing the level of support for bi-lingual language.
Barbara Lett Simmons, 50, a former teacher, is president of a management training firm, with two children, one graduated from a public school, and the other from a private shcool. She received her A.B. degree from Western Michigan University.
1. Achievement: I believe the validation of the curriculum which is presently going on is the appropriate approach to raise achievement. This requires adequate staff in our Office of Research and Evaluation. When the goals of what we want to teach have been clearly determined and when the methodology for the successful transmission obtains, then we shall without question raise the level of student achievement. This strategy sets up the mechanism for testing to serve a positive purpose in curriculum design and teaching methodology.
2. Programs: Successful programs which meet our system's goals should be promoted and maintained. Our alternative schools must be preserved for they acknowlddge the individuality of the learner. The environment of our students is so significant we must use every means possible to stimulate it and contribute to its being helpful and reenforcing; thus, adult and continuing education must be expanded. Clearly funds could be saved by moving the administrative and board offices from the Presidential Building at Pennsylvania and 12th. This would also increase the accessibility of the administration and board to the public. The necessary expenditure to truly decentralize our schools should be made.
3. Priorities: My over-riding interest is that every student be viewed for what he is - an individual of dignity and worth with the right to learn to his fullest potential. Education is for all of the children of all the people. Specific priorities are due process for innovative programs, employees and student; actualized decentralization; and an expanded concept and support for career education.