Tuesday, October 30, 2012

SCHS Pigskin Update

My alma mater SCHS Indians posted a 24-18 home win over the Lanier Longhorns last Friday evening.  This week, the Indians (6-2, 3-2) play hosts to the Eastside Eagles (6-2, 4-1), who will make the trip up to The Reservation from Covington.

Should they win, the Indians would climb into a tie with Eastside for third place in Region 8AAAA (and I assume lead in any tie-breaker, but the new ranking system has everyone confused insofar as the playoffs are concerned).  For their part, the Eagles are coming off of a 55-10 home win over Walnut Grove.

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Monday, October 29, 2012

Nothing To Fear In Charter Amendment

Read the column here.

Year after year, the United States registers among the bottom tier of industrialized countries insofar as educational attainment is concerned.  And year after year, Georgia registers among the bottom tier of the fifty states.  And year after year, the Clarke County School District ranks among the bottom tier of Georgia counties – despite paying top dollar for such dismal results.  So just how is that status quo working out?

As a point of reference, four-fifths of the states provide for public charter schools of some description and, of those, more than three-quarters provide for an “alternative authorizer” other than local boards of education.

As another point of reference, the Georgia Charter Schools Commission approved fewer than one-third (17 of the 56) of the applications presented to it during the brief period of its operation [see below].

For the origin of “wailing and gnashing of teeth,” see chapter 13 verse 42 of Matthew:

For O.C.G.A. Title 20 concerning education:

For HB 881 creating the Georgia Charter Schools Commission:

For HR 1162 amending the state Constitution:

For HB 797 creating the State Charter Schools Commission:

For Georgia Public Policy Foundation FAQs:

For Georgia Department of Education FAQs:

For Georgia Charter Schools Association FAQs:

As I researched this column, I found that the sources differed on a variety of particulars, such as the relative number of charter schools approved by the Commission and even the number of charter schools in the state. Regarding the latter, some counts apparently include only "dependent" schools and some seemed to conflate "charter districts" with "charter schools." So, I guess one is left to choose for oneself.

Regardless, though, as noted by one commenter (a fact which others seem to steadfastly ignore) my point is that the actual impact of a revised such Commission is likely to be rather small.

And yes, given my past positions on educational issues it is true that my support for the amendment could be anticipated - just as could others' unwavering support for the dismally failing status quo.

Readers will note that I did not engage in any hyperbole or denigrate the character or motives of those who oppose the amendment. As is frequently the case, the same cannot be said of many of my critics.

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Thursday, October 25, 2012

SCHS Pigskin Update

My alma mater SCHS Indians returned to their winning ways by posting an impressive 49-0 Region 8AAAA victory over the Madison County Red Raiders last week in Danielsville.

This week, the Lanier Longhorns (3-4, 1-3) make the trip from Sugar Hill to face the Indians (5-2, 2-2) in another Region 8AAAA conference tilt at The Reservation.  The occasion marks “Band Senior Night” in Toccoa.

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Friday, October 19, 2012

Time To Pack Up The Nuclear Powered DeLorean

“Everyone knows rock attained perfection in 1974.  It’s a scientific fact.” – Homer Simpson*

Well, it’s 1974 all over again – and that is not such a bad thing.  To wit:

Back in August, Lynyrd Skynyrd released Last of a Dyin' Breed, an eleven track studio album.  The boys played on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on 01 October.

Then, in September, ZZ Top released La Futura, a ten track studio album, their first in almost a decade.  The trio is coming off of a gig on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno back on 21 September.

Next, we have Led Zeppelin’s Celebration Day, a live concert film from back in December 2007, playing this week in selected theatres.  The 16 track 2-CD set comes out on 19 November.

And if you are in the mood for more live music, The Who is playing The Arena at Gwinnett Center over in Duluth on 05 November.  It is their first US tour in four years.

Finally comes GRRR!, a fiftieth anniversary retrospective by the Rolling Stones (including a couple of new songs) slated for US release on 13 November.  The album will be available in either three-CD 50 track or “deluxe” 4-CD 80 track versions.

Of course, all of the bands, with the exception of Led Zeppelin who has vowed never to tour again, are currently out on the road either in the States or in England.  And for all of my fellow Tolkien nerds, if you scour Led Zeppelin's lyrics, you can find any number of Middle Earth references.

*See Homerpolooza, The Simpsons number 152 (season 7 episode 24).

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Monday, October 15, 2012

SCHS Pigskin Update

My alma mater SCHS Indians fell for the second consecutive game, losing 21-17 to Monroe Area last Friday evening at Legion Field.  Going into the game, the Purple Hurricanes were ranked number eight in the AP’s top ten and number seven in that of the AJC.

If you are looking for bright spots, SCHS’ two losses have come to teams with a combined record of 11-1 and have been by a combined total of eight points.  But, a loss is a loss no matter how you cut it.

This week, the Indians (4-2, 1-2) travel to Red Raider Stadium in Danielsville to continue region 8AAAA play against the Madison County Red Raiders (0-6, 0-3).

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