As a former Park H.S counselor for 32 years (40 in the district), I view the potential breakup of Unified to be unwise, reckless and socially irresponsible with many unanswered and unposed questions. The logistics are mind boggling.
Many in our weekly coffee group of about 10 retired Unified educators (including two directing principals) spent 30 to 40 years in the district. Racine Unified is our legacy. All of our children received great educations in it. Many have advanced degrees. They have done well in the job world and have good lives. They thrived in racially and socioeconomically diverse schools and are better for it. When we started in the '60s and '70s, Racine was viewed as a model urban school district and a leader in voluntary desegregation. Racine was able to recruit teachers from throughout the country. College admission counselors often told me how impressed they were with our students, often mentioning our minority students.
Our test scores are low and must be improved. The teachers are working hard toward that goal with teaching quality remaining high. Most students identified as gifted are more likely very well nurtured being introduced to reading, the alphabet, numbers etc., at a very early age igniting their love of learning. Increasing parental involvement is where much, if not most, of our efforts must go. Education needs to start early, be centered and promoted in the homes with plenty of community help. Let's give our students a great world education, one of diversity, not exclusion.