A message from renee
Hello, this is just a late note to tell you that after a tough fight, the vote went against us and we did not prevail. Still, 2160 voters in Waltham agreed with the messages of no CRT, no mandates and more emphasis on vocational training! The fight will continue. I will continue to go to the school committee meetings, and will continue the fight against the mask mandates and Critical Race Theory in all its forms. We must continue to work toward academic excellence as well for all students. Thank you to everyone for their support, whether it was volunteering their time, a monetary donation or your vote. There will be three more seats for school committee coming up for election next November, and we will run again. Thank you to all. Please feel free to contact me at 339-707-5125. Renee
power to the parents!
I’m Renee Arena and I am running for school committee. I think that Waltham kids deserve to know that they don’t need to incur crippling debt in order to get a good job. They need to know that America is a great country. I want parents to know that they are the ultimate power when it comes to their child’s education.
I was born and raised in New Bedford, earned a BA in English from University of MA Dartmouth, and was later admitted to the Master’s of Education program at Rhode Island College, where I studied Special Education. A few years later, I graduated from Women’s Technical Institute with a certificate in Computer Repair and Networking. I have lived in Waltham for over 20 years, am a former foster mom, a former Sunday School teacher, have been on the board of the Waltham Museum, and am presently a volunteer with the Cat Connection.
Leading the way
I am glad that the new school will have 14 new vocational programs. However, kids should know that this is a viable choice for them while they are in elementary school. Too often I hear about students being ‘college-ready’ or not. There seems to be such a prejudice against the trades.
I see young people coming out of colleges with huge debt when they don’t have to incur debt. Skilled tradespeople are desperately needed!
I have a BA in English and spent several years going from low-paying job to low-paying job, while trying to get a graduate degree. I eventually dropped out and then I went to a trade school, Women’s Technical Institute in Boston. Not only did I get my career in IT thanks to WTI, but I met my husband through my career choice.
Our schools need to stop teaching Action Civics, which teaches children to go out and protest. Protesting is fine if you do it lawfully and peacefully and you know what you are protesting for or against. But an 8th grader has the mind of a child, and adults would not be likely to know all the intricacies of an issue, let alone a 13 year old.
Groups like Generation Citizen, which has partnered with the Waltham Public Schools, teach ‘Action Civics’ which is project and service-based. We need to teach people civic literacy. Children need to know how unique the US is and to understand how government works before they protest it.
I propose that we teach traditional civics and that we look at resources such as the Civics Alliance from the National Association of Scholars.