— Eye on Everett —

Charter Schools are Bad?

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By Josh Resnek

The reason such a project is worthy is due to the fact that there is such a great need for veterans and elderly housing for lifelong Everett residents being pushed out of the city by rising rents and unaffordable housing costs for older men and women and veterans on fixed incomes.

The mayor last week said: “We have a lot of charter schools who may try to buy it (the Pope John property) and to expand. Charter schools are good for education but they hurt cities and towns.”


This was the mayor being interviewed in another publication. Claiming charter schools are good for education but hurting cities and towns is all about opposites colliding.
It is like claiming rainy days are good for a tan and that sunny days won’t darken really light skin if you stay out in the sun.

Charter schools here in Everett have raised the bar for reading scores, and in a big way. Charter schools challenge the limited abilities of our public schools in a way they cannot compete.

Last week, the Pioneer Charter School announced its school of science, which serves Everett students grades K-12, beat the state averages on 2019 assessment tests.

They outperformed state averages in English and math on the 2019 MCAS tests!

Is that hurting Everett?

Of course not.

If Pioneer Charter School is looking to expand at the former Pope

John facility, the city should explore how to help out this charter school. On the one hand it will revitalize a facility that has been used as a high school for 50 years.

On the other hand, it will produce a legion of students whose reading and math scores are better than those all over the state.

If Pope John were turned into a first rate Pioneer Charter School, the city would be impacted positively with higher scores among local students in a big way?

The mayor needs to wrap his head around this rather than dismissing charter schools as he did last week as hurting cities and towns.

Picking a New School Superintendent

We understand the school superintendent search committee last week made a decision at its closed meeting to relegate to the dust bin of stricken applicants all Everett administrators presently serving who applied for consideration.

In other words, the search committee apparently decided by secret vote to disallow interviewing applicants serving who work in the school department.

In the modern world, where officials taking themselves very seriously often opt for change for the sake of change rather than to use common sense, such a decision is deplorable.

If the intention is to wipe the slate clean of the present slate of administrators and of those who applied to somehow cleanse the department and to head it in a different direction, then the school committee itself should consider resigning so the slate will be completely cleaned.

All of them together have been administering the school department for many years.

They are part of the same pie mix, the same leadership, taking their orders from the same official no longer there for 10-20 and even 30 years.

It is quite often said that what is good for the goose is good for the gander.

If we need a new superintendent from outside the city to somehow preserve the sanctity and well being of the public school system, then maybe we need a new school committee so the slate is truly wiped clean and we start all over to achieve a better result.

Not allowing competent local administrators who understand the lay of the land and who have done an exemplary job is not about weighing and measuring someone’s personality.

It is about weighing and measuring an administrator’s ability to carry out their jobs honorably and efficiently, and to show as well an interest in the community and the kind of pride that results from showing such deep interest.

Not allowing an interview of those local administrators who applied is a crime.

Exclusion is not what this city is all about, even if the search committee feels exclusion in this instance is the right thing to do to wipe the slate clean.

If the slate is to be wiped clean, then many hundreds of employees need to be purged – and this includes nearly everyone on the school committee and most of those on the search committee.

Still No Car for The Mayor

The mayor has apparently been taking the approximate $250 a week car allowance he asked the council for without leasing a car.

His plea before the council some months back was that he needed the stipend because he gets around the city so much and needs a car to do so. He implored the council to see it his way because he’s done so much for the city that he deserves such a stipend.

Whether or not he deserves the stipend for a car is not the question. The question is whether or not it is legal for him to pick up the dough every month from the city for a car he has not bought or leased. Nearly everyone who knows the mayor sees him driving around the city in a friend’s car.

Considering he is receiving $12,000 a year to have his own car, such a situation becomes a public embarrassment.

Yet the mayor knows no embarrassment over this.

His pleasure is in pocketing the dough for the car given to him by the council without having to use the money for a car.

The council should rescind the giveaway, that is, unless the council simply wanted to increase the mayor’s salary illegally by $12,000 with this stipend.

The mayor should know better than to accept this money.

He does know better but he doesn’t care and no one will take him to task about it.

How’s that for an example of leadership?

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