You’ve probably noticed, but lately I’ve been in one of my … moods. To be honest, it’s been a long time since I’ve been angry about something.
“I can still remember how it felt to walk before the committee. I walked forward to find a seat, and looked over at the woman who visited our school. She rolled her eyes as if disgusted by the fact that I carried hope upon my shoulders that day. We sat patiently as school, after school stood before them facing rejections, and closures. Man! They were on a roll that day. As the school before us got their closure, the smug looks on each PEC members faces said it all. A grim moment that left an unnerving feeling in my stomach. We were given a fifteen minute intermission and while we parents and teachers stepped out to use the facilities, and/or grab snacks, the committee stood before the podium deciding our schools fate before EVEN hearing what any of us had to say. While we spoke on behalf of something so crucial and important to us, the committee DID NOT want to hear it. The woman who’d evaluated our school , sat disinterested, and annoyed that we cared as much as we did. She got up and stomped her way towards other PEC members with written notes discussing US in private. She finally sat down and settled herself into her chair, and began crinkling her snacks. I’d never seen someone stuff their face in such force as I saw her do so that day. Without a care in world, she grunted away as she loudly ate, and drank. The only thing I could think while frozen in shock over witnessing it was, “That poor Twinkie.”
The committee stared emotionless at us as we pleaded for them to keep our humble community and family oriented school open. In the end, they STILL voted to close our school. Despite the letter we wrote to them beforehand, all the children who stood up and spoke up for themselves, the parents who pleaded for their children, and their community. We were told NO! Why? Because they had already made their choice the moment they laid eyes on us that day.
My biggest regret was telling them how the school is shaping quite the remarkable leaders in their students, encouraging them to think critically, work together through teamwork , and empowering them to think for themselves, and that their Incorporating programs that teach the kids tools to have more positive interactions with one another. That was the moment everything went wrong.
Maybe I should have said, “Their teaching our kids to follow the crowds and be sheep?”
Maybe then, would they have said yes……
Read on for letter
December 6, 2017
Mr. Tim Crone and PEC Members,
I am writing this letter on behalf of myself and Taos International School’s parents. Taos International School is located in Taos New Mexico. We decided to write this letter to you, not only as parents, but community advocates as well.
Why We Parents care: Taos International has been an outstanding experience for my child, and our family. Not only are they teaching multiple languages, WHICH research states broadens the young mind and implements higher education learning, the teachers are also empowering our children to “LOVE TO LEARN” Through inquiry based teaching. Many students are demonstrating quite impressive critical thinking skills, as well as self-confidence in their choices and thinking processes. I can confidently state that Taos International School is without a doubt, positively shaping the future leaders of our community.
Benefits that being part of the Taos International School includes:
- Community (Families feel welcome, and part of something.)
- Solidarity (Children are confident in themselves that working together is a lesser challenge for them, and teachers work alongside the parents to keep their students on track with their education.)
- Familiarity (Students are in a family oriented environment)
- Discipline (TIS offers physical education classes in Taekwondo, soccer, gymnastics, etc. Which causes the children to embrace teamwork, and discipline with ease.)
- Team Building (students step in to help/assist their peers rather than standby. Teamwork is prominent.)
- Leadership Development (IB and Dual Language philosophy/principles are assisting staff in creating leaders.)
- Critical thinking (Students are taught and encouraged to analyze and solve problems)
- No bullying (As we are all aware, BULLYING is a big problem in schools. TIS has a no bullying policy which is implemented with fidelity. No student is a bully or is bullied. ALL STUDENTS FEEL SAFE AT TIS. AS PARENTS THIS IS ONE OF THE MANY REASONS OUR CHILDREN ATTEND TIS).
There are many more advantages that Taos International provides for our students, and families. The school gives an upper hand advantage where higher education is concerned: something not many elementary or primary schools are capable of providing nowadays. Because of this, WE as parents, want to see the school continue to thrive.
Our favorite aspect of the school is that; rather than force students into memorizing information for a test, because we ALL know test anxiety IS real, they are teaching their students to understand the concepts, which is ultimately the most valuable form of learning.
This is why… I and parents believe in Taos International.
Most importantly, in such a beautifully diverse world that we live in today; Taos International instills attributes in our children such as:
- Communicator (Share ideas and listen)
- Principled (Integrity)
- Inquiry (Curiosity and love of learning)
- Open Minded (An understanding that people think differently and are still valid)
- Balanced (Willingness to learn different things)
- Thinkers (Critical thinking)
- Knowledgeable (Explorative)
- Courageous (Not being afraid to face challenges)
- Caring (Sensitive to others needs)
- Reflection (Think about experiences and ways to improve)
As a whole, Taos International School creates a positive kick-start in our children’s education, life and career. Therefore, we as parent’s are asking that you please take special care and attention to our school when making your consideration on the future of our children and community on Thursday, December 14, 2017.
Myself and Taos International Parents.
To be continued…
on the next one.