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Posted on Sun, Oct 7, 2012 : 1:12 p.m.

2nd Ann Arbor schools coffee hour with Andy Thomas set for Tuesday night

By Danielle Arndt

Despite only one person showing up for his first community coffee hour, Ann Arbor school board trustee Andy Thomas is trudging forward with his meet-ups.


Andy Thomas

The second coffee hour will be at 7 p.m. Oct. 9 at Caribou Coffee at the corner of Packard Street and Stadium Boulevard.

Thomas will host the meet-ups on a monthly basis, alternating between a morning and evening time slot to accommodate parents, teachers and students’ schedules. The coffee shop location will vary.

He said although the Sept. 11 morning coffee hour only drew one participant, the publicity generated a handful of emails.

“In that regard, it did have the effect that I wanted, which was to give people an opportunity to contact me with their issues and to ask me questions,” he said.

Danielle Arndt covers K-12 education for Follow her on Twitter @DanielleArndt or email her at



Mon, Oct 8, 2012 : 11:09 a.m.

I, too, missed the announcement of his "coffee meeting". Many years back, many board trustees visited the elementary schools twice a year at lunch time to hear from the "trenches" and get a feel for what the real issues were at the elementary level. I sure missed those face to face times. Even retired, I will try to make it tomorrow! Thanks, Andy!!!


Mon, Oct 8, 2012 : 2:50 a.m.

I think this is a great idea. I know the article suggests that this was well-publicized, but not apparently enough that I knew about it. I will make an effort to attend!


Sun, Oct 7, 2012 : 9:03 p.m.

For a city that prides itself on education, doesn't this say it all! "Despite only one person showing up for his first community coffee hour, Ann Arbor school board trustee Andy Thomas is trudging forward with his meet-ups."


Sun, Oct 7, 2012 : 11:44 p.m.

I think Andy Thomas is a great guy, but I also think that most people are skeptical that they will be heard. This school board has put this administration into place, and this administration has repeatedly played hide the ball with parents. The administration has no idea what parents want, and what causes parents to flee the district. And more importantly, it is not interested. Smaller class size, less administration, more teacher control over the classroom, less standardized testing. Forget teacher testing -- can we have some testing for the principals???? I know there are decent ones out there, but we have yet to see one in three different schools. And here's an idea: Why don't we ask the parents who pull their kids from the district to participate in an exit interview -- sure would be nice to collect some real data and see if there are some common threads/concerns.

Molly J

Sun, Oct 7, 2012 : 6:06 p.m.

Great initiative!