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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : opinions : commentary May 28, 2016

11/13/2012 8:03:00 AM
My Turn: IB program ties education to real world challenges

My name is Max King. I’m 12 years old and I attend Mountain View Preparatory.

There are a lot of great things about this school but one of my favorites is the fact that we have Spanish class.

Some other schools may teach Spanish but since this is an IB school we don’t just learn the language, we learn the culture.

This is very important because in order to fully understand the language we have to learn how the culture ties into that. Sra.Potter, the Spanish teacher, does this very well.

Not only that, but the way she teaches Spanish makes it enjoyable. It’s not studying out of a textbook, we do fun, interactive projects. We also link our projects to the real world and tie them into other projects in her class and in our other classes.

Personally, I think it is important to speak another language so that you can have more of an international perspective which is what the IB program is all about.

Also, speaking a second or third language can raise your I.Q. and stimulate brain activity. You can also communicate ideas with more people which can be helpful in many different situations. Spanish is a Latin-based language which makes it easier to learn other languages such as French and Italian.

Overall, I think Spanish is very fun, good for your brain and it is just a good class to take.

For more information about Mountain View Preparatory visit: http://mvp.cocsd.schoolfusion.us

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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, November 26, 2012
Article comment by: Aban Patel

Wonderful to learn another Language.
When I was In school we had to learn 2 languages and a foreign language and that helped a lot.
Even in college we had to have a paper in the foreign lang.
I think learning & haveing Fun is the best way to go.

Posted: Monday, November 26, 2012
Article comment by: Adi Maneckshaw, PE

The little 12 year girl happens to be my grand daughter. She is smart and has competed in National Geographic Global contests. She is talented and does other community activities. Unfortunately many negative response indicated that some people are educated and yet illiterates and some are competing for Stupidity Award from the State of Arizona. OOOPs forgot, AZ stands 47th in education out of 52 States. It is indicative of your GOP Governor, Congressmen, Senators and senile McCain. Idiotic statements indicate that you learnt nothing in your high school or college. I bet you hardly speak English language correctly. From the people with multiple language skills or at least one's trying to learn the same, the folks with negative comments look idiots with learning disability.
Hope America does not rely upon your talents in up coming future. Kids are blessings and they are wealth of our future but those who are negative will never understand.
I enjoyed reading one too many comments from some of your brainless ideas.
Hope you have jobs with that kind of talent!!!
Grandpa Adi

Posted: Saturday, November 24, 2012
Article comment by: Way to go Max

Kudos to Max for being brave and writing this letter. I support the IB Program. I was not challenged enough as a student in the COCSD and wish I would have had the opportunity Max does now. Excellent work!

Posted: Friday, November 23, 2012
Article comment by: To Curious

Huh, I looked up Curious Coincidence, Curious Response (1) and Curious Response (2). None of them are in the public record either. Stop being all "conspiracy" theory on a psuedonym. Yes, it is one (just like you) and I picked the name out of a hat. Therein lies the problem with people who always have to have a problem with something. It just doesn't matter what the pertinent facts are, you just want to blow things up that don't have any significance in order to have a big "gotcha". Your second question is probably better to be asked at a school board meeting or of the Superintendent. I'm just somebody who loves that we have a fantastically performing school in our district.

Posted: Friday, November 23, 2012
Article comment by: Curious Response (2)

@ 'looks like':

I asked two questions. Mr. Carmichael respectfully answered the first. The question why COCSD paid $45,000 for surveys, persuasion, IB promotion, and help in passing tax propositions/overrides while Buckeye and Buckeye Union school districts paid 'only' $36,000 for similar services remains unanswered.

You and one other commentator seem to be validating the claim that IB promoters are dogmatic partisans who want a school for their special "20%" isolated from - and at the expense of - undeserving riff-raff whose parents don't share their ideology.

Posted: Friday, November 23, 2012
Article comment by: Curious Response (1)

Thanks for the reply, Mr. Carmichael. Either you have the distinction of being completely missing from the online public records or the "coincidence" is in your choice of pseudonym. In any case, I didn't expect an answer to my first question, much less the second.

As for all the indignation over comments to Max King's essay:
What shame is there in "challenging a student?" Beliefs need to be challenged. Isn't that what IB is about? On the one hand we have a very talented student writing a 'My Turn' opinion piece and on the other we have her mentors claiming she needs protection from dissenting replies. Were the adults who prompted this essay honestly ignorant of the responses it might evoke? If so, that doesn't speak very highly of their intelligence.

Regardless of what was wrong in the "Dear Max" comment, it raised some reasonable questions. One, whether the education of children outside the IB program is as important as the education of those who are in it, was answered with a resounding "no" by Deanna Carmichael. That attitude gives a pretty good indication of what the answers to the other questions would be if Max's mentors were answering for her.

Correcting an apparent misconception: ARRA federal grants are a taxpayer obligation.

Posted: Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Article comment by: looks like Curious Coincidence just pulled a romney...

Thought they had the big gotcha...and proceeded right to the big egg on face.

look- aside from anyones personal feelings about schools and districts... this young person wrote a positive letter that quickly garnered a bucket of negative replies. some might say 'welcome to reality'... but how sad is it that we have to teach kids how negative reality is rather that make it a bit less negative.

good job on the letter kid...and don't let the 'negative nellies and or normans' get you down. you may already be ahead of them in both character and future intelligence.

please...proceed... to keep being positive and dreaming and doing.

Posted: Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Article comment by: Scott Carmichael

Dear Curious Coincidence,

Yes, just a coincidence in name I'm afraid. I have no idea of who the "other Scott Carmichael" is. I live in Cottonwood.

And, to everyone else who has chosen to address nastiness towards Max. I know this little girl personally and she is an amazing young lady. Whether she was asked to write something, or it was a class assignment, or she just decided to write on her own, NO ONE should be criticizing her or addressing questions to her. Write a letter to the Superintendent if you must.

And, I'm a proud parent at this school. If you were, you would completely understand why this school and it's educational model is succeeding. My children through the years have attended both a Montessori school and the other schools in the district and I've never seen a child be so motivated and connected to learning as my youngest son at this school. The way they tie in all subjects with each other makes the learning very real world and stimulating. And, if you don't think being bi-lingual is an important trait for this generation, then you're just plain not paying attention to the world we live in. My son's test scores have improved dramatically from the previous year. I suspect that is the trend for others as well. There is tons of value in this school for those who attend, just ask the parents. Do you really need a 50 page report or something? Unless you have a child in school (or in THIS school), butt out and don't tell me what is good educationally (or not good) for my kid. It's a successful school, that is plain to see. If you're simply "just a taxpayer" then your money is being well spent.

Posted: Monday, November 19, 2012
Article comment by: Curious Coincidence

Is there a relationship between Scott Carmichael who commented here and Scott Carmichael of Peoria who is a neighbor of John Hartsell, CEO of the PR firm that scored $45,000 per year of taxpayer monies to survey, persuade, promote IB, and help pass tax propositions and overrides?

If so, perhaps Mr. Carmichael can enlighten us as to why COCSD paid $9,000 more for such services than Buckeye and Buckeye Union school districts.

Posted: Sunday, November 18, 2012
Article comment by: Stan Duellman

You have wrote a very well written letter. I am very proud of you. I am however disappointed how some have responded here. Being bilingual, you will have an advantage over your peers. Keep up the good work! -Stan

Posted: Sunday, November 18, 2012
Article comment by: itsy bitsy Spider

This is what I don't understand, Miss King:

According to IBO's website, The International Baccalaureate program was initially developed to help children of foreign ministers and third-world officials meet the entrance requirements of top-tier European Universities. It drew upon many educational theories, including some pioneered by American educators, and it did help its intended student body. So then IBO expanded the initial idea, creating the Primary and Secondary programs to help educators, missionaries, and UNESCO facilitators in developing nations bring almost totally illiterate populations into the 20th century. Although I can't find any specific data on application of the spin-off programs, I assume they too were successful in countries like Sudan.

But Arizona is not an almost totally illiterate developing nation. C-OCSD does not have the community/educator disconnect described on the IBO website. What, then, makes the I.B. Primary and Secondary systems better than those already in use by C-OCSD, by Clarkdale/Jerome, by Camp Verde? How, specifically, does it differ from the methods used in various local charter schools such as Montessori and Desert Star?

To be honest, I couldn't see that the site you gave us showcased anything better than C-OCSD programs and projects featured in the Verde Independent before MVP was established. I do realize, however, that it takes a while for a new system to affect performance. Maybe If you gave me a few concrete examples of how Mrs. Potter integrates language studies with sociology, geography, and history, I'd be able to perceive the I.B. Secondary Program the way you do.

Posted: Sunday, November 18, 2012
Article comment by: itsy bitsy Spider

Actually, Mr. Pawn, I've known quite a few children capable of defending causes near and dear to them--sometimes beyond their elders' better judgment.

Miss King's composition could have grown out of an essay assignment or, just as easily, could have been a spontaneous response to some criticism of her school. If so, attacking the writer won't help her remember facts she probably doesn't hear at school or at home. Nor will it encourage her to tell us more about I.B.'s approach.

From what I've read, I.B. students tend to be insular, their teachers and parents more than a bit defensive. This isn't good for C-OCSD. It's a major headache for the Board of Governors. Maybe if we gave her a chance, an articulate young lady like Max King could help the community understand the real purpose--the as yet unarticulated benefit--for importing a Swiss teaching model and replacing Tavasci with a college preparatory charter (magnet?) school.

Posted: Sunday, November 18, 2012
Article comment by: Gray Grammarian

I hope Max is doing better in Spanish than in English composition.

With all due respect, Max's English teacher might want to consider:


Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: The innocent pawn

I would like to know how many people actually believe this really is an unsolicited letter written by a 12 year old.

I mean how many 12 year old kids do you know that would wake up one morning and announce Gee I think I will write an op-ed to my local newspaper about my school and conveniently include a for more information hyperlink at the end!

I mean come on people, how naive can you be?

Do you think there just might be adult handlers pulling the strings on this innocent pawn behind the scenes?

Do you think that just maybe this could be part of the $40,000 PR blitz the COCSD has spent to get you to like the IB program?

In case your memory needs to be refreshed, the previous school board spent $40,000 of your tax money, funds you hoped they would use for educating kids in the classroom, and spent it on a Phoenix-based PR company. For stuff like this.

Of course this kind of thing would fit right in with the pattern of deceit and manipulation we have come to expect from the administration of COCSD superintendent Barbara Uren.

In case your memory needs to be further refreshed, 2 years ago Tavasci Elementary was closed under the pretext there were empty classrooms. Even though the school was running near capacity, in fact with more enrollment than it has now.

The school was much beloved by the kids, parents, teachers, and staff. It was one of our best and highest performing schools.

The empty rooms were special ed facilities custom built for that purpose, which Superintendent Uren unwisely closed.

Unwise because the district then was fined $60,000 plus ongoing expenses for failure to provide an adequate special education program.

Or maybe you think the letter is real and all this is just a coincidence.

Posted: Friday, November 16, 2012
Article comment by: Deanna Carmichael

To the person that wrote the "Dear Max" letter:

I find it interesting that Max has experience in both the IB school and at least one other school and you don't, yet you seek to correct her in a letter based on her own experiences.

I also find it interesting that you forgot that there was a year where the Tavasci school building lay empty. MVP did not push out the Tavasci Elementary School. What kind of revisionist history is that just to make your point?

While it's true that there are license fees and extra teacher training required at an IB school, there was a grant written for that so none of that money comes out of your pocket nor does it take from any of the other area schools and the school board does not have a line item for it in their budget since it costs the people of Cottonwood nothing. The school board budget is online.

But please, leave your kids where they are. MVP is for forward-looking students and their parents interested in learning about the world and it's wonders. Only about 20% of Cottonwood's students go to college and, in my experience with my own kids, many of the other 80% make fun of those 20% that do plan to go on to higher learning. MVP is only for those 20%.

Are you smarter than a 7th grader?

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