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1 excellent teaching, innovation teaching, which means the
2 lack of competition and at the end we said in the right
3 place at the right moment. So the teacher is the one
4 that could communicate with the student and communicate
5 with the parents.
6 And I feel that it's important to communicate
7 with the parents because in that way you could have the
8 domain in the classroom and get the kid with something.
9 I would like to share with you what I used to
10 do in order to get the commitment from the parents and
11 the commitment from the student, because that is the
12 main thing. When you have the kid, you're going to be
13 able to do whatever you want to; however, the kid is not
14 with you, cannot play the game, is not on the team, so
15 it's kind of difficult. That's what I was saying.
16 So this is what I used to do. The first day
17 in class -- I should say two days before starting the
18 new school year, I had the names of the students which
19 would be in my class and say my name is Jaime Escalant.
20 I'm the teacher. Unfortunately your son is in my class
21 and immediately we had the feedback.
22 What do you mean by that? Well, by the
23 contact we have between the school district, the
24 government and the teacher union, I'm supposed to have
25 only 30 students. Your kid is number 32, which was a
1 lie because he was the first one I was calling to get
2 the interest on their parts.
3 And they said: What am I supposed to do? I
4 don't care. Well, usually that's the normal answer.
5 Well, I'm going to have to change your kid to another
6 class. I don't mind. He can go to any class he wants.
7 It's going to be another problem. He has to
8 take a bus, and we have two buses over here. One is at
9 645, bus A. Bus B is 6:50. Mom does a question mark.
10 I don't want my kid to be bussed.
11 Then if you don't follow my instructions, I'm
12 not going to allow him in my class. So after two weeks
13 I used to call them and we're going to have a potluck.
14 I want you to bring something to eat. And so all the
15 parents are coming to be here and you're going to bring
16 your music.
17 So that day I used to have them don't bring
18 your kid because it's between you and me. I used to
19 call them say I want you to take a good luck what I'm
20 going to do here.
21 I teach every time I talk to your kid. I
22 want you to use this T plus T plus T or T to the third
24 The first T is tell your kid I love him and
25 be sure he knows that.
1 The second T is touch your kid, show your
3 And the last T maybe is the most difficult,
4 is time. Time is the best investment you can have in
5 your kid.
6 Another thing I want you to know is this.
7 Every time you're going to talk to your kid with love,
8 discipline, but you have to know how to discipline your
10 C, control your anger. Don't let your anger
11 control you. That kid belongs to you. The kid does not
12 belong to the cop, the street, the park, the school. I
13 stands for immediately. Tell him it has to be
15 And A stands for what's the language you use
16 when you discipline your kid. If you use our language,
17 he'll remember you. So don't use those words with F
18 because that's normally the kids have as a common
20 Then I used to tell them every time you
21 answer, opportunity is knocking on the door. That's the
22 time you have to educate your kid. That's the time
23 you're going to tell your kid, look, I'm your friend,
24 and I want you to define what you mean by friend. A
25 friend is a friend no matter what. A friend never steps
1 in your way. A friend is a friend after lunch looking
2 at you and you have food left on your face, and tell
3 your kid I'm your friend, I'm your best friend, and a
4 friend is a gift from God and tell your kid, call me.
5 And every time your kid wants to talk with
6 you, please talk gently. Don't use words like maybe.
7 That sounds like a promise. Don't tell your kid some
8 day. Sounds like tomorrow. It's your kid. So you are
9 not going to put this kid (inaudible). We're going to
10 put him in the best college or university.
11 That was one thing. And the other thing was
12 to sign the contract. Not all the kids used to sign the
13 contract. Only the ones that don't do anything. The
14 kids used to walk into the classroom with no supplies.
15 Besides that I used to talk with the principals and say
16 don't let this kid drop the class the first day. I want
17 him to be in the classroom one week, two weeks. You
18 have to prove he can do it.
19 And, again, this is the kind of time to get
20 it because that's what we need. It has to be somebody
21 who speaks the language, be able to communicate and high
22 expectations. Our kids are the best.
23 MR. HANNA: Charlie.
24 MR. GARCIA: That discussion demonstrates my
25 next point perfectly. As we say something about good
1 teachers, at the federal level I think there is to use
2 technology. There is a teacher like Highman in Florida,
3 teaching kindergarten and most of her kids are Hispanic
4 and African-American and by December every single child
5 in her also reads and also writes.
6 And her position is when you come to my
7 class, there is no excuses, there's no exception; and if
8 there's a problem, it's her problem and the children's
9 problems, and she's won all kinds of awards.
10 The point is this year they took her out of
11 the classroom. She's training other teachers. And what
12 I've been urging the state and we can easily do this in
13 the federal government is to identify master teachers in
14 math or reading like Mr. Golfman and others all around
15 the country.
16 Then what you can do is you can actually take
17 their lesson plans, put them on all it. You can them
18 tape them in the classroom in front of a real classroom
19 teaching, and a teacher anywhere in the country, a
20 reading teacher or math teacher can go on line and see
21 the course he has to teach the next day and watch a
22 master teacher do it in a classroom.
23 Maybe they won't do it as well, but they'll
24 at least see how important a, quote, master teacher does
1 That I think would be an initiative that
2 hasn't been done before from the federal government
3 identifying these points of master teacher. You can go
4 on line now and download two-hour movies while they're
5 still in theaters. So I think that an effort like that
6 might tie in well because it would be innovative.
7 It would be using technology and also
8 identifying master teachers around the country.
9 MR. HANNA: Jose.
10 MR. CANCHOLA: It's interesting, two things,
11 budget cuts, lack of money, things that they need in the
12 school, pay decent salaries, yet many school districts
13 in this country -- there was a law imposed upon
14 districts 30 years ago. Things have changed. We've now
15 become the majority of the population, and I know at
16 least two school districts where we're, you know, 70 and
17 80 percent, that our kids are being bussed an hour.
18 They got to get up an hour early to go across town
19 because there is a federal judge who has issued a thing
20 that says you're going to comply with the law.
21 By now they should revisit based on the
22 population change in the communities with some issues
23 like this. I would say Texas and Arizona, we're like 99
24 percent of the population. So why does it make sense to
25 have some kid get up an extra hour or so and drag on an
1 extra hour after school? It doesn't make sense anymore.
2 I mean I would think the federal government
3 should go back and revisit at least some of these
4 districts and say: You know what? Hey, there's no
5 longer a need. So there's no need for this kid to go
6 across the city 30, 35 miles just to comply with a law
7 which is antedated.
8 I would hope that -- I don't know if this is
9 in our commission, but I would think we should bring
10 that to the attention that they should revisit this
11 issue, and where there's still a need keep it there, but
12 where there is no need in any school districts to remove
14 MR. VISIEDO: I guess, you know, the whole
15 issue of the educator group is -- there's so many topics
16 such as bilingual education, some of the legal issues,
17 past decisions and everything else.
18 I guess my feeling is when I heard you, Alex,
19 initially talk about it and I saw the recommendation of
20 your group is so focused, I was very happy with it, and
21 because I do happen to agree that -- and don't take this
22 to an extreme, but the great teacher can teach with a
23 poor curriculum and he can still make the connection
24 with kids, and I think the problem today is that we
25 don't have enough good teachers.
1 We don't have enough good teachers like Jaime
2 and we probably won't. The competition for that job, if
3 you look historically, for teachers 30, 40 years ago,
4 like of our teaching work force was made up primarily of
5 women and African-Americans and they were the best and
6 brightest and now women have other options that they are
7 pursuing very aggressively and as a result we have a --
8 not only a shortage of teachers, but a shortage of
9 extremely bright teachers and that's just the reality.
10 There's some great teachers out there, but we
11 don't have the pool that we had 30, 40 years ago. So I
12 would encourage the group to stay focused. I agree with
13 you to try to step away from the mines, you know, the
14 land mines of bilingual education, those kinds of
16 If we as a commission, to Leslie and Norma's
17 point, is stay focus as being different and not giving
18 out a hundred different recommendations resulting in
19 nothing, but maybe focusing in recommendation and as a
20 result have a better more sensitized group of
21 professionals that are in our classrooms, that are
22 sensitive to the needs of Hispanic young men and women
23 in the class room, then I think we would have done a
24 formidable job in moving this initiative forward.
25 So as far as I'm concerned I thought your
1 focus was right on. I think that's what we ought to
2 remain with and let's get manageable fewer goals and
3 let's do those right and let's just not be the reason
4 that nobody remembers what the other commissions did
5 because they did exactly the opposite. They did a whole
6 bunch of things that ultimately resulted in nothing.
7 We ought to be remembered for a few that are
8 going to be substantive in the change that we make in
9 the future.
10 MS. HANNA: Ofelia.
11 MS. BOSCH: I was looking for Leslie. I
12 wanted to ask a question. Wasn't our primary mission to
13 follow the president's executive order as you pointed
14 out about no child -- every child should read on third
15 grade level by the end of the third great?
16 MR. HANNA: She's actually stepped in.
18 MS. BOSCH: Wasn't our primary mission to
19 carry out as Norma pointed out the president's executive
20 order of No Child Left Behind, every child reading on
21 third grade level by the end of the third great? Is
22 that the primary mission for his executive order which I
23 thought we were supposed to be following?
24 MS. SANCHEZ: Think the true intent of the
25 executive order is that we follow the intent of No
1 Children Left Behind, the measure of accountability,
2 what works, kind of the whole law is 1800 pages. We
3 just have to be cognizant of what's in there.
4 The key component we discussed yesterday is a
5 main focus is every child must be reading by the end of
6 third grade and have comprehension. So by the time they
7 get to fourth grade they are reading.
8 That is the key for us to keep that theme
9 within this commission, is very consistent with No Child
10 Left Behind. It's a key.
11 MS. BOSCH: It's a key, a primary focus. And
12 as Norma pointed out, we did discuss it in our family
13 group and then we were sort of leaning away from it.
14 MS. SANCHEZ: You can do it in a variety of
15 different ways, any program. There's ways you can
16 address it, address this issue, because what the
17 research finds and the reason they're so supportive of
18 it is research shows that children would be more likely
19 destined to a psycho poverty of life circumstances.
20 If you identify one factor determining
21 whether or not these children can succeed is whether
22 they can read by the time they reach fourth grade.
23 MR. HANNA: The final report that we're to
24 produce in March actually kind of has a two-prong charge
25 to it. One is we indeed -- we submit a plan that does
1 two things. One does address -- one part of the prong
2 should be how doe we make sure No Child Left Behind
3 legislation are indeed put in place. So that's one
5 There is another piece within the executive
6 order that actually references a plan for closing the
7 educational gap, which prong is not necessarily limited
8 to those provisions that already Terri has taken care in
9 the No Child Left Behind.
10 MS. BOSCH: Shouldn't that be part of the
11 pyramid? We start there and go down to everything?
12 MS. SANCHEZ: It's a very good approach and
13 it gives you a set of criteria of which to evaluate your
14 recommendation, does it support, does it have kind of
15 the same spirit of the intent of the law?
16 MR. HANNA: As a template, as a template,
17 those criteria which were emphasized within the
18 legislation, those four key things, I think can be a
19 helpful template for whatever we may suggest.
20 But the question I guess is something we can
21 work out. If there were a topic that was not covered by
22 the No Child Left Behind legislation, could that be
23 addressed by the commission even though it may not be
24 directly addressed within the legislation? Yet if the
25 commission thinks that that is something that could help
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