Opinions are divided on the feasibility and efficacy of the plan put forward by the campaign “Save the 2,008” at the Palo Alto Unified School District Board of Education meeting last night.
While parents and students alike commended “Save the 2008’s” motives at the meeting, reactions were mixed regarding the campaign’s six points.
“[The campaign’s] intentions are coming from a really good place,” Palo Alto High School Student Representative Emma Cole said. “I agree with those intentions and his ultimate goal, but I think that the six points are slightly unrealistic.”
Gunn Student Representative Grace Park offered additional insight on Vincenti’s goals.
“I think the real goal from this meeting is going to be how to take the intentions and some of the new ideas in these proposals and coordinate them with what the student body really wants,” Park said.
Parents, however, were much more supportive of the campaign’s six key points. Parent Gloria Simon praised the efforts of the campaign, stressing the importance of urgent action.
“I want a better environment for all our children right now,” Simon said. “Save the 2,008″ recognizes the obvious connection between the school environment and our children’s well being.”
According to “Save the 2,008″ co-founder and former Gunn High School teacher Marc Vincenti, his goal for the meeting was to further inform the public of the campaign’s mission and answer any questions the school board might have had.
Vincenti launched the “Save the 2,008” campaign last winter in response to Palo Alto’s hyper-competitive academic culture, student mental health and the deaths of PAUSD high school students.
“Save the 2008’s” six goals include reducing classroom sizes, reducing work at home and in Advanced Placement courses, banning cell phones at school, eliminating constant grade reporting and ending rampant cheating.
Supt. Max McGee praised Vincenti’s campaign efforts, but reminded the community of the school board’s recent efforts to improve the overall experience of Palo Alto schools in relation to student well-being.
“In addition to ‘Save the 2,008’ we do have all these additional efforts,” McGee said. “This is not just a school issue, in fact it’s a community matter and we, as we have said many times before, are all in this together.”
While the school board did not take action at yesterday’s meeting, Vincenti says he hopes they will eventually implement Save the 2,008’s six points.