Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Legal update on Superior Court

Dear Directors DeBell and Martin-Morris, 6-09-2009

I’ve spent a great deal of time over the last 2 and one-half years in what thus far has been a failed attempt to stop discriminatory math actions. On May 30, 2007, the board voted 6-0 to approve Everyday Math for Elementary School. After one year of EDM use achievement gaps expanded beyond their already large deficits.

You know most of this story of ongoing discrimination. It culminated in the High School math text adoption with the 4-3 approval of Key Curriculum’s Discovering Math series.

There is ample evidence (Project Follow Through) that educationally disadvantaged learners are not well served at the k-3 level by the inquiry and exploration model used by the SPS. Hook-Bishop-Hook’s huge California study revealed that Reform Math does not perform as well as more explicit materials, when used in Districts with urban demographics.

The NMAP found ample research to recommend “Explicit Instruction” for those struggling with math. The Discovering Series provides little if any “Explicit Instruction”. It is more of the same failing Inquiry/Exploration model that has widened the achievement gaps over the last decade.

My question for each of you is:
How much must members of the public do to protect the children from the Central Administration’s incredibly poor recommendations and decisions?

Where else can people get away with completely ignoring good information with proven performance and acting on bad information with inadequate results - for DECADES? Nobody can reason with people who refuse to listen.

At this time if donations not cover the litigation cost, Martha McLaren and I are guaranteeing payment for the legal appeal of the May 6, 2009 high school math adoption decision.

I am sure you would agree that a speedy court decision in regard to this matter is needed.

Unfortunately at this time it appears that the Central Administration has other ideas. We received the following from our attorney, Keith Scully:

"I have already exchanged unpleasant emails with the School District’s attorney – they’re playing games with whether they were properly served. I urged her to speak to her supervisor before litigating on that – she has a tradition of filing frivolous motions. I’ll let you know if I see anything formal, but I strongly urge you to either get fund raising in place or find a pro bono attorney!"

No wonder this district is often not appreciated by the public, when there is a perception that a tradition of filing frivolous motions exists.

Please do what you can to get this matter resolved and please do your best to discontinue the tradition of filing frivolous motions.

Thank You,
Danaher M. Dempsey, Jr


Anonymous said...

So are you suing SSD over the curriculum selection? On what basis?

Someone told me they heard something on the news, but I haven't been able to find anything on (e.g.) seattletimes.com.

-- Matt

dan dempsey said...


Here is the text of our filing in Superior Court.