A Serious Missed Communication Opportunity

Last week was a big news week for the Mt. Diablo School District. The biggest news arrived on Monday when six of our district schools were placed on the list of the 188 worst performing schools in California. Although it might be easy to breath a sigh of relief that your school is not on that list, results like this are a blow to our entire Mt Diablo educational family because we know here in our community that an education for all children is one of the most important legacies we can leave the next generation.

Therefore it saddens us that to date, as primary stakeholders in this district, we have still not heard directly from our superintendent or Board of Education regarding this matter. While we realize that it is a busy time in the educational world and that communication issues got harder last year with the Board decision’s to cut the district’s sole communications officer, we can’t help but feel that district-wide communications on this compelling piece of news should have been a priority.  This was a serious missed opportunity to begin to rebuild the unity and trust with parents and the community that is sorely lacking in Mt. Diablo Unified School District.

A simple communication from either the Superintendent or the Board might have gone a long way to reassuring us that the district was working on a plan to improve the situation. For example:

Dear MDUSD Families:

The fact that the Mt. Diablo School District has six schools on the list of the 188 worst schools in California is unacceptable. My staff and I are reviewing our options and I will promise you that under my watch we will do better. Our students deserve better. I have already begun to work with the school sites and I have been in contact with site administrators. We must make sure we do our best for all of our students in this district.

We know that during Dr. Lawrence’s community meetings held in February that he heard loud and clear from parents that better communication from the district offices was essential to improvement in this district. And we know that with tough challenges ahead of us, including implementation of drastic budget cuts and the attempt to pass a bond measure in June as well as a parcel tax in the future, that communication, communication, communication is the key to re-uniting this district and reestablishing trust with its constituents.

We sincerely hope that Dr. Lawrence and our Board of Education will somehow manage to make this important issue a serious priority in the future. We need to move away from the status quo.  We need leadership that listens, takes action, and communicates.  These are our children, we should expect our leadership in this school district to communicate regularly.  We cannot move the Mt. Diablo School District forward without this kind of relationship.

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3 thoughts on “A Serious Missed Communication Opportunity

  1. Is there any discussion to bring 6th grade back down to the elementary school level? There are more than enough empty classrooms at Valle Verde now–because of the increase in classroom size to 34. Foothill is busting at the seams. My daughter said that there may be 40 kids in a science classroom next year!

    Seems to make sense to me. There must be empty classrooms at many elementary schools now.

    GB

  2. Gloria,
    I have not heard anything about moving 6th grade. After the loss of class size reduction MDUSD should have available classrooms at many elementary schools. I suspect that moving 6th graders to elementary campuses should be part of the overall study on school closures. Both options require the use of extra classroom space.

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