Those not immersed in the field of education might believe the recent attention to Common Core and teacher evaluations came out of nowhere. With the exception of items that are unavoidable, such as the nonrenewal of the superintendent’s contract, local news reporting has trended glossy on education, biased toward the status quo which goes by the name “education reform.”
Last month, the Hartford Courant and Hartford Public Schools announced the plan to partner, specifically with the Journalism Academy. The details on this, along with potential price tag, are still being hashed out.
Already, HPS has contracts with Connecticut Public Broadcasting, Inc.
With such partnerships, there are a few clear winners. Continue reading 'When the Media Teams Up with Public Schools'»
Governor Malloy issued a letter to the Performance Evaluation Advisory Council on Tuesday urging more “flexibility” and a delay regarding the planned changes to teacher evaluations. There was no mention of delaying or canceling the standardized testing in March; those tests are central to this issue.
This relieves stress for many of those directly affected by the policy that was pushed through in 2012, but some in the media are playing this off as politicians merely being responsive to constituents. Although the current standardized testing does not encourage this, let’s apply some critical thinking and see what evidence leads us to believe. Continue reading 'Policy Delay a Sign of Responsiveness?'»
Paved section of path, south of the Riverfront Plaza
It’s expected that the State Bond Commission will approve funds on Friday to finish paving the walkway between Charter Oak Landing and the existing path that crosses railroad tracks. Continue reading 'Access Along River to be Extended'»
Ken Krayeske, a Hartford cyclist and lawyer, posed a question at Bike Walk Connecticut’s fundraiser dinner: How does the permanent closure of Flower Street to pedestrian and cyclist traffic enhance Transit Oriented Development (TOD)? The keynote speaker, Kip Bergstrom, Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development, gave a succinct response before swiftly changing the topic: “I’m not sure that it does.” Continue reading 'How Flower Street’s Closure Helps Transit Oriented Development'»
Between the low voter turnout and the small number of ballot items — three ballot questions and four Board of Education spots to fill — one would expect that Hartford’s results would have been among the first returned to the Connecticut Secretary of the State.
Hartford 2013 Election Results (Official)
Following the election, the voting process in Hartford has received sharp criticism from the Courant on more than one occasion. Last week we reported how one resident needed to make multiple stops in different parts of town in order to vote. We continue to hear more from voters who had less than ideal experiences on Election Day.
Voters had reported that the several pages of text required to understand the ballot questions had been missing on Tuesday morning. Some places received these documents hours after the polls had been open. One resident who knew of this issue did not get to vote until early evening, around 5pm. Frank Gordón-Quiroga, whose polling place is at the Hartford Public Library, said the explanatory materials were present, but on the corner of a table. Continue reading 'Snarled Process Offers Results Days Later'»
Would we even recognize Election Day in Hartford if it weren’t for the near-ritual of shenanigans?
As of mid-afternoon, CT News Junkie reported a low, even by our standards, voter turnout of 2.2% in the city. This number may deceive one into believing that each voter’s experience would be positive, as there’d be no rushing folks away from the voting tables and out the door. Continue reading 'How Many Trips Does It Take to Vote in Hartford?'»
Weeks before school resumes, nobody seems to know what assessment will be used in the upcoming year –the CMT/CAPT or new Smarter Balanced. Continue reading 'Changing Standards, Assessments in Public Schools'»
Back in March, Real Hartford reported that Hartford voters were beginning to file complaints after noticing that not all write-in votes appeared to be counted. Later that month, the State Elections Enforcement Commission (SEEC) voted to authorize an investigation into these complaints.
Hartford was not the only municipality in Connecticut where voters complained about officials’ handling of the November 2012 election, but it is the only one of the six that still has not complied with the SEEC’s requests for information on votes allegedly not counted, say individuals close to the investigation. Continue reading 'It’s August. Did Your Vote Get Counted?'»
The week began with hope and anticipation. A Monday morning site meeting with an engineer and a planner from the Department of Transportation had gone remarkably well, and neighborhood representatives looked forward to seeing what new ideas the CT Fastrak team had developed for the Flower Street crossing since the May 20th decision requiring that the crossing remain passable. Alas, this bright outlook was no match for the reality of the July 16 meeting the DOT hosted at the Lyceum in Hartford. Officials showed old drawings of overpass designs and a remarkably similar attitude toward neighborhood advocates to that of their August 2012 public meeting in the same room. Several officials, including Commissioner James P. Redeker, said they were not expecting the May decision to be in favor of the neighborhood stakeholders.
In fact, it began before they even made it to the room. DOT officials, seemingly unaware of the sightlines, acoustics and occupants of the multi-chambered Lyceum lobby, spoke aloud of residents as “Ignorant” and quipped that “…the AC should be turned down low so that residents’ tempers don’t flare.” It seemed the meeting was off to a rough start before it began. Continue reading 'DOT Unwilling to Change Busway, Attitude'»
In a message sent today from Hartford 2000, Connecticut voters were reminded that tomorrow is the last day they can change party affiliation if they wish to vote in a party’s primary election this September:
Connecticut State statutes only allow major political parties to hold primary elections. Also under Connecticut State Statutes, political parties set their own rules regarding primary participation. Currently, the major parties in Connecticut, Democratic and Republican, only allow enrolled party members to vote in a primary. Should candidates petition for a primary in either of the major parties, a primary election will be held on Tuesday, September 10, 2013. Continue reading 'Want to Vote in the Primary? Monday Deadline for Party Change'»