Rambling Friday

I’ve neglected you lately, and it wears on my conscience. But I really have been overwhelmed.

First, the prom dress: 21 total yards of fabric (heavy satin, very light and silky lining, and some kind of filmy over-drape with all the manageability of a spiderweb) have occupied most of my kitchen table for the last couple of weeks, until I procured a dressmaker’s dummy to be sure that I got the fit right during the times that my daughter was not available — mostly middle-of-the-night sewing sessions.

Although it doesn’t show in this small picture, there are dozens of tiny crystals decorating the sides of the split in the spiderweb-stuff, which have to be ironed on one-by-one, as the spiderweb stuff melts at the temperature required for the crystals to stick.

The next time-killer has been the school budget: starting out roughly $1.1 million more than the City had planned to allocate, even with a generous 4.5% increase over last year’s funding, we’ve spent a painful couple of weeks trying to find any area of possible savings or downsizing that won’t lower the quality of our children’s education. There were cuts made that are actual cuts — but the burden will fall primarily on the administrators in increased workload and less travel.

We haven’t made final approval yet, but after last night’s meeting, I don’t anticipate many changes before submitting the request to City Council. We were down to cutting items that saved as little as $600, in an overall $47.8 million dollar budget.

Three of my kids have been on out-of-town school trips: to Chattanooga for the TSA State Conference, Orlando with the ORHS Band, and Williamsburg for the ORHS Orchestra.
Daughter #2 surprised us all by bringing home a first-place trophy in Engineering Design at the TSA Conference, so she’s headed for Dallas in July for Nationals.

Look at the kids in this picture — they’re mostly ordinary kids, not the National Merit Scholars Oak Ridge is so well known for — but they achieve incredible things on their own time through a club that simply provides them with the avenue to explore their own potential, and teachers who stay late in the afternoon and on weekends to answer questions and teach incidental things (like physics, as applied in calculating wind resistance for the Engineering Design award).

And, there’s been a little bit of distraction this week due to staff shuffling… contrary to rumor and the media’s supposition, the reassignment of the ORHS Principal had nothing whatsoever to do with the school newspaper controversy last Fall.

Off to dabble in one of the many County races for a bit, but I’ll expand on some of these topics later. I promise not to leave you waiting for so long this time.

4 thoughts on “Rambling Friday

  1. contrary to rumor and the media’s supposition, the reassignment of the ORHS Principal had nothing whatsoever to do with the school newspaper controversy last Fall.

    That’s certainly not the perception – care to elaborate?

  2. Paragraph 4 of yesterday’s Oak Ridge Observer article (page 1) hit the nail on the head:

    “The message seemed to be, without actually being said, that Ervin wasn’t the right fit.”

  3. “Ervin wasn’t the right fit.”

    This quote actually says nothing one way or the other concerning the role of the school newspaper controversy.

    In fact, the school newspaper controversy was a factor, as it was one painfully visible symptom of the poor judgement of this principal.

  4. It’s true that the quote doesn’t say anything about the newspaper controversy, one way or the other.

    My assertion that the newspaper controvery had nothing to do with it is based upon direct knowledge of the situation. As you might imagine, there are limits as to what is appropriate for public discussion in terms of human resources matters.

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