Hosting a dialogue among parents, educators and community members focused on improving our schools and providing a quality, equitable education for each of our nearly 100,000 students.
~ "ipsa scientia potestas est" ~ "Knowledge itself is power"
Did she really say DeKalb is the second biggest county in the state?Fulton 1,014,932Gwinnett 789,499DeKalb 739,956http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/13000.html
DCSS spends millions on PDS 24 with salaries and equipment.Decatur does not by partnering with eLife magazine. And look at the quality of their work:http://www.elifemagazine.net/decaturedtv.htm
I couldn't find Esther Caspino in the salary schedule - does she really work for the system or is she "hired talent"?
Aren't we cutting music and art classes? This is just BS and money could have been better spent. We're in a hiring freeze. We also haven't gotten step increases in two years and they aren't in the horizon to happen anytime soon.They also left out the furloughs. If I don't laugh at this, it'd make me cry. We have so many other real expenses, that a video like this should be totally off the radar.
Oh - nevermind - I guess she was hired - here's her MySpace info Esther's BlurbsAbout me:I am a Boston native. For the past seven years I have worked in the Broadcast industry as a Radio and Television News and Traffic Anchor for several stations including Yolanda Adams morning show on Praise 97.5, Smooth Jazz 107.5, The Steve Harvey Morning Show on Classic Soul 102.5 and Hot 1079, WXIA TV Channel 11 and PDS TV 24.
We watched that video when I interviewed with the county 2 years back...I think I received a copy on DVD too. I think I threw it away though.
oh! so I guess it was an old video that has recently been posted on YouTube - I get it.
@ cerebration 5:48 pmEsther Caspino is in the entertainment business. http://voice123.com/esthercaspinoI wonder how much DeKalb paid for this video?
Surely we have enough teachers in the Central Office and Fernbank Science Center to make a real dent in the teacher shortages.
Thank goodness they took the time in the video to explain that Atlanta has apartments, condos, single family housing, shopping, dining, entertainment, sports, a museum, and parks. We know of no other city in the United States that can offer all these incredible amenities. We in DeKalb are Premier after all. Crawford says so.Those TV24 people just justified their 6-figure salaries to this blogger! Come work for us, and you too (if you know the right people) can make $100K+ putting out crap like this.Cynical? Yes.
Other than the orchestra does DeKalb have any white kids? Looks like maybe 2 1/2.
With 13,000+ employees, they had to pay someone to host the video???
Settle down folks. I'm a friend of Ester's and she does not work for DeKalb Schools as an employee and never has. She does voiceover and on-camera work in her free time. She often works for DeKalb Schools for free as she did for this video because she knows budgets are always tight in DCSS. The video is almost 4 years old. Only thing new about this video is her narration was updated with new salary info for this year. Chillax!
I could tell by the computer gear that this was not a new production. While it was done in house it has a lot of problems and does go on way too long. I don't know the amount of production they do but sometime you can save money by not having a lot of staff and farming productions out. Overall it's pretty clunky and somewhat redundant in its message.
To the Esther's friend who says... "budgets are always tight in DCSS".I find that so laughable - $380,000 for the Hollywood trip, $8,000,000 for America's Choice, a program that teachers are adamantly against using with their students, millions in lawsuit dollars, over $10,000,000 in cost overruns for Southwest DeKalb High School, etc.Budgets are not tight in DCSS except in the classrooms. That's our biggest problem. Ester should have charged DCSS big time money - everyone else does.
This video was originally produced in 2007 for the HR department of DCSS. Yearly the video gets updated with new salary schedules -- nothing else (obviously). I would love to know where the millions of dollars are for PDS 24 -- especially since the operating budget for ALL contractors, repairs, equipment, professional services, etc. is $37,000. The equivalent operating budget for DeKalb County DCTV is just under $300K.The OPERATING budget for DCTV is roughly more than BOTH salaries and operating for PDS 24.In short -- you get what you pay for.. In the television industry $37k doesn't go very far. Having worked in the industry myself for a number of years, I am very surprised by what they produce for the funds they are allotted. Having met some of them and having seen what they produce, I believe they are effectively using every dime to its fullest potential and desire to do more -- they just don't have the resources.Rather than nailing people before we have all the facts, we should all try harder to know what the facts REALLY are, and offer solutions. We're all in this together, we should act that way.
Anonymous 4:52 pmPlease tell us where your facts are coming from. We would love the opportunity to see the operating budget for PDS 24. Can you direct us to an official website that lists the operating expenses for PDS 24? We really do like to deal with the facts on this blog.
I think parents on this blog are upset about the $300,000 (was the the figure - correct me if I'm wrong posters) in new lighting that the BOE wants to spend for the PDS 24 video production. Most of the posters feel that money should be spent in classrooms for children, especially in these times of tight budgets.I went to the DeKalb website to view the video productions that PDS 24 produces. They're just simple podcasts. I've done podcasts and posted them to the web. Not to belittle the PDS 24 productions, but this is not a difficult technology. The podcasts are very small, so I can't see spending hundreds of thousands on lighting would make much of a difference. I could see and hear the BOe members just fine.A lot of students do podcasts as class presentations. Parents, if you want to see some awesome podcasts done by students, go the the website address below. These are Mabry Middle School students in Cobb County producing some really high level podcasts. I wish our DeKalb students had access to this technology. http://mabryonline.org/podcasts/
Step back and think about it. If you were in charge would you rather your tax dollars spent on this foolishness or instead on the classroom where you child is every day? This board and administration think videos like this is more effective than good teachers. A sad testament... Give me smaller class sizes which result into attention to my child, and I'll give you support everyday.Till then, you tell me why I should think you're doing a great job.
John Heneghan records and posts all of the Dunwoody City Council meetings on his website - for free.And like Anon above informed us, Decatur partners with eLife magazine online - who does a terrific job of recording and posting all meetings. http://www.elifemagazine.net/decaturedtv.htmWe don't need a "production" with $300,000 lights!
I work for Decatur Schools and can confirm that we do pay for production services for Decatur eLife's videos about the district. But eLife does not broadcast our BOE meetings. Sometimes they'll cover just a small snippet of the meeting here or there depending on the topic of interest, but it's random on what they post after the fact and it's certainly not live. They do a fine job for a small system like ours.
I will try to look it up, but the school system added two full-time positions when they started to broadcast BOE meetings. They may have been assigned at MIS staff or another budget line item, but trust me, all of the costs for PDS 24 are exponentially more than $37,000 per year.
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