Taken on Sunday October 30th
Hardscrabble just off of 120 and just past the gargoyle bears.
Pender says she wanted, in part, to hold public officials more accountable.
Later in the article, the author seems to be implying that NCN has affected local elections. NCN seems to get or take credit for Gregg Bresner's victory 3 years ago.“I was shocked at how much people in a small town like this were willing to say, ‘Those people know what they’re doing, there’s no reason to question the superintendent of the school board,’” she said by way of example. “The problem is there are things that need to be investigated.”
The news site has had a discernible impact on the area. Since it launched, a challenger has successfully unseated an incumbent in the local school board election - an unheard-of scenario in a town where elected school officials typically serve until they decide to step down.I have not been able to find causal effect or make the leap in analysis that because there was a new site writing posts in New Castle that an incumbent lost his position to a new comer. Another problem with that statement is that in every election since Bresner's when an incumbent ran against a challenger, the incumbent won. Yet another problem is how they measure their impact on an election. What were the polls saying before they got involved? Are they implying that they are trying to affect local elections for their candidates and that they are not impartial reporters?
New Castle NOW’s coverage of a controversial high school schedule change “had much to do with its modification a year later,” said managing editor Christine Yeres. But if the site had been operating before the controversy began, “we could have helped people to know the details of the largely hidden decision process of the Board of Ed ... and residents could have expressed their opposition more effectively,” she said.Here is a case of NCN pressing their own personal agenda. Transparency goes to both sides of an issue. A newspaper's mission is not accountability. It is to report the news, good, bad or indifferent. Accountability comes from the reporting of the news and asking questions. Part of reporting as a newspaper is to bring information to the community. The dissemination of information in itself leads to transparency and accountability. News can be "good" news as well as "bad" news. If your goal is only accountability and not reporting, your are a niche site that is a blog not an online newspaper.
“Sometimes we want to be The New York Times and sometimes we want to be the church bulletin,” Pender said.Yes, we as publicly elected officials should be held accountable. Accountable to all the community, not just a loud subset. We should be transparent. Sometimes, take yes for an answer and recognize that we are trying and that there are some terrific things going on in the schools. Or at least do both.
They call what they are doing a platform dedicated to providing comprehensive and trusted local coverage.
What is Patch?
NEW: Updates from Board of Ed meeting Tuesday, October 11October 11, 2011by Christine Yeres
• Random survey taking place now; finished by next week
• Kiesel announces that advisory committees are not required to be publicSurvey is afootBoard President Alyson Kiesel announced that the district’s telephone survey of 250 randomly chosen residents is currently taking place and will be finished at the end of this week or early next week. “Once we have the data,” she said, “we’ll have a report analyzing the data, then a presentation to the board and community from the survey company.”District committees are not required to be publicYesterday afternoon, Superintendent for Business John Chow declined to respond to the question of whether the meetings of the budget advisory committee will remain closed and the committee members remain unnamed, referring NCNOW to the video tape of Tuesday’s board meeting. See “New schools budget advisory committee up-and-running; meetings will be closed,” NCNOW.org, 9/30/11.On that tape, without referring specifically to Chow’s budget advisory committee, as part of her President’s Report Kiesel stated that “the district has a whole variety of committees, some board committees, some administrative” that are “not called for by statute or regulation, and are not required to be public meetings. They may be put together for any variety of reasons by administrators for any purpose and unless two board members or more attend, they are not considered board meetings or board-sanctioned meetings.”