WE OPPOSE Guidance Charter School 2's LACOE Charter Appeal
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We the parents, teachers, leaders and community members in the Antelope Valley Joint Union High School District, stand in OPPOSITION of Guidance Charter School 2’s petition for a Charter for the following reasons:
Our community stands with its elected officials and highly trained school staff members and respect the outcome of their repeated decisions to deny Guidance Charter School and Guidance Charter School 2 their petition. To override our community’s officials and staff is a slap in the face to the standards of excellence we have worked so hard to elect and recruit. We have a right to self-govern and make decisions for our own community.
Our community objects to being treated as less than by Los Angeles County. We object to the stigma of our community being less worthy or the adage of being the “Red-headed Step Child” of LA County. We have high expectations of our community and are fighting to get our fair share of all LA County has to offer, including excellence in all of our schools.
Our community has watched helplessly for the last 17 years as our children have had test scores that have continually been sub-par. We object to rubber stamping any charter ever again that has proven to produce results that are substandard. Our community objects to the threats and intimidation many of us have faced by the Executive Director, GCS board members, GCS staff, teachers, parents and even other students of GCS over the years when we had grievances with GSC on any level.
Our community objects to blatant lies by GCS Administrators and threats by investors. The State Office of Education found, when comparing test scores to the comparable classes, GCS underperformed substantially. GCS continues to compare apples to oranges to skew the numbers. Investors outright threatened future involvement with charter schools if GCS was denied their charter during the CDE meeting. We demand that our community not be subjected to strong arm tactics such as this.
Our community objects to GCS using guilt and scare tactics with low income parents to demand donations for legal fees and charter busses to save GCS. It has been shown that Kamal Al-Khatib’s salary is substantially higher than most large district superintendents in the state of California. It is deplorable that he would ask his most loyal, yet least financially able parents to give his school money. The threat is if they do not donate, they will lose the school. We find that reprehensible.
Our community objects to any charter that misleads their parents into a false sense of security. Parents are keeping their children home thinking all will be fine. GCS has not provided a closure plan for these unsuspecting parents. It is a violation of trust that is unthinkable.
Our community objects to our voices being negated by being called “Political”. We are not politically against GCS, we are firm in our objection in schools that do not meet the minimum qualifications to receive a charter. We fully support any school, charter or otherwise that offers our children excellence in education.
Our community objects to 17 years of substandard performance, teachers without credentials or teaching with the wrong credentials and hearing that “now” it is going to be fixed. We have 17 years of children that have been put at a major disadvantage in life due to their substandard education. We object that those students were all predominantly minorities that already faced uphill battles in society and this school severely failed to prepare them to excel. We stand firm in saying, “NOT ONE MORE CHILD!”
Our community objects to “paper grades”. We demand that the letter grades given on report cards that are truly reflected in the test scores every year. We object to pushing children through school without a quality education. We object to straight A’s on a paper when our children are failing in basic educational skills. We demand better for our children.
We stand united as a community. We are not able to drive 160 miles to get to an afternoon meeting mid-week. Nevertheless, these are all our children in every sense of the word. We understand and sympathize with the children and the parents of GCS. They have been misguided and their trust has been abused. Yes, it will be hard on some of the children to change schools. It is our job as parents, grandparents, teachers, school district staff, community leaders and the rest of our village, to help them adjust. Sometimes what is in the best interest of the child is hard for that child to fully understand at their age. It is our job to do what is right for them.
We implore the LACOE Board to do what is right. Let our children get the real quality education they deserve just like every other child in LA County.
By our signature, we state we fully object to the petition for a charter for Guidance Charter School 2.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Antelope Valley Joint Union High School District Residents
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