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Sunday, January 29, 2006

Mary Wysong Files for NACS School Board

Wsyong files for an At-Large School Board seat in Northwest Allen County Schools.

Mary Wysong is the mother of Sam Wysong, a Carroll student who spoke up at a Northwest Allen County School Board meeting in support of Jeff Fraser. Fraser is the Carroll senior who was disciplined for writing a parody about Carroll based on America (The Book) by comedian Jon Stewart.

The Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette praised Sam Wysong for his role in the debate:
The real hero in this debate appears to be Sam Wysong, a 17-year old classmate of Fraser who appeared before the school board Monday night to question Fraser’s dismissal. Without Wysong’s articulate presentation, the public may not have learned of the expulsion.

It struck me that this issue is so confused and the discussion so disjointed that I have no idea whether I should vote for Sam Wyson's mother or not, other than he is said to be an articulate young man. The most impressive comment to me was a young woman on WOWO the other day who noted that she had been forced to read much worse that "Carroll: The Book" by her Carroll English teacher. The problem, dear friends, is an unaccountable Collective Bargaining Act, not the whether students should be allowed to pass notes (or entire books) through the concertina of our public school system.
Of course you would have no idea on whether you should vote for Mary Wysong; it is early in the filing period for candidates.

If you think that you would be making up your mind now before the field is set, before Mrs. Wysong and other candidates enunciate their qualifications and positions, and before there is a period for reflection and comparison, you are mistaken.

It suggests a person who peruses the candidate filings as the lists are post ed and makes a snap judgment as each name is read.

Voters, hopefully, will be considering the qualifications of Mrs. Wysong and all other candidates in relation to each other. Voters, hopefully, will be considering the views of the candidates in their totality.

That is, voters will not make a determination on the basis of a sole issue.

I surmise, but do not know, that the impetus for Mrs. Wysong's candidacy may have been the question of whether the school administration was proportionate in its discipline. However, I also surmise that she is a parent, who like most parents of children in our public schools, has thoughts about the manner in which the school district handles a range of concerns.

That she has raised a son who has been praised as being articulate and who has the presence to address the school board on any topic probably counts in her favor. That fact is not without some weight.

I doubt that you are, indeed, the kind of person who makes snap judgements. (Among the evidence supporting my opinion is the fact that you have the good sense to read Indiana Parley).

You raise a good point regarding the state statutes regarding collective bargaining. Perhaps you could tell the readers more.

Readers may wish to contact the Indiana Policy Review Foundation (linked upper right) to request a copy of Charles M. Freeland's study "How Collective
Bargaining Hurts Public Schools." Mr. Freeland and his team of researchers looked at the collective bargaining agreements of every school district in Indiana in the course of the research for his study.
To skirt the minutia of electoral deadlines and qualifications, let me rephrase my lament: The discussion in the newspapers of "the Carroll papers" offers nary a clue as to what Mother Wysong, her son or anyone else involved may think about the issues I hold dear, including freedom of speech and assembly.
the biggest problem with public schools is that there is no ACCOUNTABILITY. who in NACS answers for the fact that they skew the graduation rate to make them look good, that their test scores are a matter of demographics, not excellent teaching, that the superintendent is a bully who threatens people until they go away. and so perpetuates his ability to continue doing the same thing year after year. the only hope is to turn over the school board completely to new people who don't feel that he must be perfect because they hired him. Let's see more parents like Mary Wysong, who has seen firsthand exactly what is going on in the schools, not some libertarian who is only concerned about tax dollars. no doubt the money could be spent more wisely, but understanding school funding in Indiana is a full time job in itself, and the teacher's unions tie the hands of the administrators more than anyone outside the system could know. What we need here is for the residents of the school districts to learn something about the election process and get off their backsides and VOTE IN MAY.
I concur, an entire replacement of the NACS school board would be great. Fortunately this year three out of the five seats are up for election. This only occurs every four years, and with perfect timing.
Fort Wayne and beyond is going to be tuning in to the NACS election, mainly as a result of the huge controversy they created by expelling someone for satire, or what I call journalism.
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