It is quite clear that Mount Kisco is a tremendous burden on the Bedford Central School District. These emails demonstrate Mount Kisco residents , including the current mayor , lobbying on behalf of Mount Kisco at the expense of the rest of the district. Bedford and Pound Ridge need to hire a law firm and sue to stop subsidizing of Mount Kisco’s education.
Thank you for your response to my previous post.
I am normally someone who signs my work as I agree that it adds validity to a claim. Quite frankly, I am apprehensive to associate my name with any site where the commenters feel it is okay to blindly accuse others of smoking crack or name call people “libtards.”
Regardless of whether my comment is signed or not, I have made several points in my previous post that you have chosen not to reference.
The fact of the matter is that I attended Fox Lane and was present for this class while you were not. It is not indoctrination when a teacher gives students a poem asking them to analyze for literary devices. Ironically, demanding that someone only teaches poems of a certain viewpoint is.
There are several reasons as to why “On the Subway” by Sharon Olds is a valid poem to teach in the AP Literature class.
As stated on the College Board website, the focus of the AP Literature course is to “deepen (student’s) understanding of the ways writers use language to provide both meaning and pleasure.” Yes, poets such as Langston Hughes and Claude McKay are, as they should be, celebrated for their work during the Harlem Renaissance. However, as explained on the website of the College Board, students in the AP Literature Course are expected to be able to analyze the duality surrounding separate pieces of literature that pertain to a general subject matter.
While the Harlem Renaissance poets give students insight to the creativity and talent surrounding the 1920s, “On the Subway” provides us with a contemporary struggle of facing our own implicit bias. Teaching two contrasting poems falling under the same general subject matter hones student’s skills in being able to analyze separate sources and form their own opinion. This helps to develop a student’s writing by allowing them to learn to find their own voice when analyzing poetry.
Additionally, the College Board tests student’s understanding of poetry by their ability to reference and explain literary terms such as “figurative language, imagery symbolism, etc.” “On the Subway” uses these techniques throughout the poem with descriptions of an expensive fur coat representing privilege and vivid colors highlighting the narrator’s sub conscience infatuation with skin deep appearances.
The clear examples of literary elements used in “One the Subway” enhance the narrator’s tone of shame caused by her initial judgement.
As someone who took the exam a month ago, it is completely fair and expected that a poem similar to this would appear. Allowing teachers flexibility in an English course is imperative to student’s learning. Especially when the poem chosen is relevant to the course. When has controversial discussion become negative? If we cannot expect students of Fox Lane to learn to defend their opinions in the classroom, when and where will they learn how to do so?
Fox Lane student class of 2018
When you have no real curriculum and you couple that with rogue teachers like Mr. Albano, this is what happens to your school. The English department has been poor for awhile. I am a fan of the job Superintendent Manno has done so far, but he needs to do something about the academic rigor and standards in our schools, the high school in particular. Business as usual hurts our students/children. This shouldn’t be acceptable anymore. If the administrators need to overhaul the curriculum and remove some of the freedoms the rank and file have had for many years for the betterment of our students, so be it. Something to shock the system is necessary. Many of our graduates leave Fox Lane without even being able to write.
This is nothing new in the English Department at Fox Lane. Self-loathing, wacky, liberal teachers in a New York Times wrapped cocoon; regurgitating from the editorial page, not an original thought among them. Exposing them is the duty of the school board; the superintendent and administrators, most of them sharing these partisan views, will always resist the necessary draining of this swamp of indoctrination.
Thank you for your response. At your suggestion, I went to the website for the AP course in Literature and Composition:
On Page 10 of the syllabus provided on this site, under the section Representative Authors, it says,
“There is no recommended or required reading list for the AP literature and composition course. The following authors are provided simply to suggest the range and quality of reading expected in the course. Teachers may select authors from the names below or may choose others of comparable quality and complexity.”
Under the poets listed, Sharon Olds does not appear. Curiously, Langston Hughes does.
Thus it appears that Mr. Albano has substantial freedom to choose any author he wishes for any discussion he wishes in this AP Literature Class. He is at the helm, not the College Board. Accordingly, I stand by my previous assertion that he appears to be advancing an agenda without considering the flip side of that agenda. Our students are entitled to hearing both sides of any discussion. That is education.
My understanding of the reason for Black History Month is to honor the contributions that African Americans have made to our Nation, from Booker T. Washington, to the Tuskegee Airman to Vivian Thomas. It saddens me that you seek to reduce that celebration to a controversial construct such as “white privilege.”
Did you actually read the quote I posted from Langston Hughes? Nowhere in that quote does he even suggest wanting to be “white”. In fact, he clearly and eloquently states the opposite, and the substantial pride he has in being black. Please read it again. It’s amazing.
Finally, have the moral courage to sign your work, as I have done.
I despise this being such a colloquial discussion.
The supreme satisfaction is to be able to despise one’s neighbor and this fact goes far to account for religious intolerance. It is evidently consoling to reflect that the people next door are headed for hell.
I would like Superintendent Manno to step up and ensure that the curriculum at our high school is free of all indoctrination with respect to race and hate speech. White privilege falls into this dubious category and it needs to go. All seven school board members should back Dr. Manno on this.
We need teachers to teach, not preach. We have so many fine educators here, let’s not allow a few in the English department to wreck it all.
It’s great that David is picking poems for the AP tests. Will definitely pay off to know the material beforehand.
It’s just libtard locker room talk
This is part of the AP curriculum not Mr.Albano’s own choosing, as demonstrated with the information on the link. This site itself pushes the ideas of white privilege rather perversely by cherry picking information to present out of context as this poem. Race is a social construct, only one small characteristic of what makes a person. Black history month exists because of white privilege and the unwillingness to accept that a large demographic contributes extensively without mainstream acclodes.
And really Langston Hughes wanted to be white? No wonder you like him, with that interpretation you can co-opt his poetry without the baggage of his socioeconomic history.
@Parent / Pound Ridge
What exactly is wrong with this poem? On face nothing. But if you dig a little deeper, pretty much everything.
I believe that this particular poem was chosen to advance the political agenda of FLHS teacher, Mr. David Albano. Mr. Albano often posits a stance which is markedly liberal. Of course he is entitled to any belief he wishes, but his jurisdiction over indoctrinating his class with his political beliefs ends at the entrance of Fox Lane High School.
This poem is about the concept of white privilege, a controversial, sociological construct which Mr. Albano seems to support. It would appear that the author of this poem does so as well.
Okay, so let’s say, for the sake of argument that this poem was chosen for discussion value, and not for the advancement of any political agenda.
So where is the flip side of the discussion? Even the thinnest of tortillas has two sides.
You mention that it happens to be February, which is no doubt a reference to February being Black History Month. So how come a poem was chosen from a white author, as opposed to a black one?
Langston Hughes was perhaps one of the most prolific poets of the 20th century. He was the heart of the Harlem Renaissance, an artistic movement in the 1920’s, which examined and honored the culture and experience of African Americans at that time. He continued to write prolifically on such issues until his death in 1967. His poems are wonderful. (1)
Here is what Hughes wrote in 1926, in a piece entitled, “The Negro Artist and the Racial Mountain”:
One of the most promising of the young Negro poets said to me once, “I want to be a poet–not a Negro poet,” meaning, I believe, “I want to write like a white poet”; meaning subconsciously, “I would like to be a white poet”; meaning behind that, “I would like to be white.” And I was sorry the young man said that, for no great poet has ever been afraid of being himself. And I doubted then that, with his desire to run away spiritually from his race, this boy would ever be a great poet. But this is the mountain standing in the way of any true Negro art in America–this urge within the race toward whiteness, the desire to pour racial individuality into the mold of American standardization, and to be as little Negro and as much American as possible (2)
I can only imagine the incredible class discussions that would jump forth from an examination of the work of Langston Hughes—a discussion examining both sides of an issue, free of agenda and indoctrination. Isn’t that what an education is supposed to be?
Bedford Hills, NY
So what exactly is wrong with this poem? Are we to have ignorant children because of our own prejudices? Propoganda? What sort? Empathy is bad? It is a literature class and it happens to be February. If theres a problem with this poem you should probably start a good ole book burning on main St USA.
This stops when parents demand it to. Pretty simple.
It’s merely the tip of the iceberg with this “teacher.”
There is more to disclose, including the propaganda he papers the walls of “his” classroom with. That will be out there shortly.
David Albano English Teacher email@example.com
Perhaps more than a few parents will request that their children NOT be placed in any of Albano’s classes at Fox Lane, so long as he is employed there. Can we not do better than this? Principal Miller and superintendent for curriculum Adelberg may hold the answers.
This is a great poem can you share the link to where I can acquire the collection this cam from?
Absolutely disgusting and divisive crap they are feeding our kids. These types of teachers are obsessed with only the skin color of people. Fox Lane High School – the school of self-loathing, indoctrinating teachers. Congratulations.
“And he is black
and I am white, and without meaning or
trying to I must profit from his darkness,
the way he absorbs the murderous beams of the
nation’s heart, as black cotton
absorbs the heat of the sun and holds it. There is
no way to know how easy this
white skin makes my life,”
This racist mishmosh of a poem is taught at Fox Lane, glad I don’t send my children there.
We support Ed. So what if he is on the school board to serve the interests of Mt. Kisco? We need him there and we voted that way. He promised us he would defend our village and he has. Ed is popular among parents and teachers. He was so popular with the union that they wanted to endorse him last election. Isn’t that a good thing?
Dr. Manno clearly stated that there will be no end to neighborhood schools, and that the number of Mt. Kisco based students that may end up going to WP is somewhere 11. If the school has capacity, what’s the problem? Where is your proof that WP parents are upset?
Please look to Dr. Manno’s presentation of his recommendation that he made last night at the BCSD board meeting. This meeting can be viewed on line and all of the content is going to be made available online at the BCSD web site. He addresses all of the concerns in the risk analysis that was presented last year by the the Space and Enrollment Committee. This is the place to get the facts to educate yourself about this issue.
How about we stop the madness and get rid of dual-language altogether and end the experiment Adrienne Viscardi and her cohorts started on underprivileged children in Mount Kisco. No one speaks up for the Latino children who we all know will benefit immensely from total English immersion. My fellow liberals have lost their way, as they applaud giving these children 50% of the English that BCSD’s older ELL students have historically gotten.
Oh the irony of it all.
Please take time to review this document. Especially pages 16-28 on the Risk Analysis.
Mt. Kisco Elementary School has a high ESL population and that is not going to change by ignoring their educational needs. Ignoring such a need will not benefit the community at large either economically or socially in the long term if this population is not provided a solid education that is also inclusive. This is a very special opportunity for English speakers in the community to have an enriched educational experience by learning a second language alongside native speakers. A dual language school of choice offers just the solution and opportunity to promote a strong school community and greater community in Mt. Kisco. It is also the most effective approach to not undo the hard work the board has done to get the district’s finances back in order. I urge you to please take the time and attend or tune into Dr. Manno’s extremely thorough and fact based presentation at the BCSD Board Meeting on Wednesday so that you may form an informed conclusion about the the dual language program at MKES.
Mr. Santomero, your whole narrative of the unraveling of society is a clickbait piece on par with the bot army. You speak about neighborhoods yet clearly have issues with demographics and a misunderstanding at best or intentionally misleading at worst hypothesis. Don’t vilify the children as causing your property value to drop, because there are many more factors at work. Having children get the best education possible includes having bilingualism and might even raise property values by giving parents the option to choose where it wasn’t possible before. Believe it or not people choosing to move actually look at education options and this one expands the menu making homes more enticing for growing families.
This shouldn’t be a cultural issue, race issue. MK could be a wonderful town but it’s like that land time forgot bec of politics and high rent. I, for one, want it to thrive and I live in Pound Ridge. If the MK schools are packed and over burdened spread the population around all the other schools in the district. People are people and every one of our families started some where. But don’t close all the neighborhood schools. That is a decision that will be regretted. Just fill them by spreading the student body around more from the over burdened schools. And have a bilingual magnet, that can benefit everyone – or have a bilingual program in the schools with kids who do not speak English yet. There are kids in FLHS who are just floating along who still don’t speak English and that leaves them feeling very instead I’m sure. And they aren’t benefiting from our rindsrful school system. When one does well, we all do well.
It is the School Board you (all BCSD residents) voted in that created the mess in Mt Kisco. Now it’s time to fix the problems they created. Equal access to education is a simple right we should all have, no matter how inconvenient to some.
This was actually a recommendation of the space and enrollment committee which was comprised of parents from every elementary school. Framing it as purely a Mt. Kisco recommendation is misleading. The article also leaves out plenty of pertinent facts. For instance, Pound Ridge and Bedford Village operate at around 60% capacity. How would absorbing a moderate amount of students affect your home values? That’s an odd argument. Like it or not, Mt Kisco students end up in Fox Lane MS and HS. Not addressing those issues will have a far greater impact on your child’s education and home value. Perhaps it’s time for the district at large to understand that Mt Kisco is in fact part of your community no matter how much you deny it. Which begs another question. Why is there such resistance to the notion it is part of the community? Hmmm….
What is wrong with having a bilingual school in MK where the majority of Hispanic families reside? The majority of students in BCSD speak English and the schools broken down by neighborhood works fine. We need the various schools to accommodate the student body. If the concern is about exposing Hispanic kids more to the Anglo kids then put them in the various schools but don’t disrupt the village schools.
Why is the title so misleading? Parents pay for this trip! This is an end of MS celebration. Who would begrudge a class of students a celebration when it takes place outside of school hours and is NOT paid for by tax dollars?
The title of the page about the dinner cruise is wrong. KLSD did not spend $36,000 on a dinner cruise; the PTO and the 8th grade families paid. Even the article says so. Who cares whether the school was involved in the contract?
We are the only district to reject our budget. Maybe it should have stayed under the TAX CAP.
The +4% budget missed passing by 54 votes. That’s it. Did you miss the vote? Be thankful it didn’t pass by 1. It could happen.
Now, the school board is trying to decide what to do next. NY state law gives them a “do-over” It’s a horrible concept because it gives them little incentive to sharpen the pencil the first time, but that’s the state we live in.
They will be tempted to submit another cap-busting budget. Surely, they might think, they can pick up those extra votes, and in late June the private school families or those without kids will be drifting off.
In an effort to produce a Greek Chorus of support, some BCSD parents have sent out a survey to the community – their community. I know I didn’t get it, I had to rely on some Mad as Hell readers to forward it to me. The survey seeks to frighten parents with cuts (music! sports!) when the real issue is the BTA (Bedford Teachers Association – the union), and their unwillingness to accept a pay freeze or less (wildly) generous benefits.
I urge everyone to answer the survey. It takes about a minute. Tell them you won’t stand for more hikes until the fundamental problem is fixed. We can’t go through this every year. Make sure to make a comment at the bottom demonstrating you know where the real problem lies – the BTA.
Incidentally, before you think I’m being “mean” or I just don’t like teachers (I was one, incidentally), you can see what teachers and admins make at BCSD here: http://seethroughny.net/payrolls/15361629. Keep in mind, this is only base salaries, and only for 180 days of contractual work. Rule of thumb is to add another 30% for benefits, and that doesn’t even include pensions, which are 75% of peak base salary for life.
Here is the survey:
And make sure to plan on voting June 21st! If you’re not here, get an absentee ballot. (I will let you know when those become available.)