Saturday, December 15, 2007


I have received today deposition proof that Jennifer Faliero did indeed have an affair with former schools' public-affairs head Marc Hart.

This was the subject on which School Board Chair Faliero gaveled me down at the podium while the tax-paid lawyer allowed her to shut up a citizen.

Ms. Elia also knew about the affair and sat silent while Faliera gaveled me down.
The school administration with the board's and the lawyer's assistance hides such conduct of administrators and board members behind spin lies and half truth and does not let the public see how they misspend tax dollars to continue their own shoddy reign of power in which they issue no-bid contracts to buddies and former administrators, bloat their pay so that it exceeds many times that of the real heroes of the school system, teachers, and hire ill-educated, ill-prepared sycophants and pals such as Cathy Valdez to head a department with only an early-childhood degree and no business knowledge of the field she is in charge of to the schools' detriment.

Citizens should confront board members with their refusal to even ask relevant questions on the podium about administration behavior. They have a right to ask the board members why they let everything slide by on the hidden consent agenda. They have a right to ask Candy Olson and Carol Kurdell to explain their manic allegiance to the misbehavior of the administration that manifests itself in their calling Griffin "disloyal to the staff" because she asked that a consent-agenda item on a no-bid contract given to a former administrator with no person's answering his phone. Griffin and Valdes should make the administration power hoarders come from behind the Wizard-of-Oz curtain of secrecy of the consent agenda and get a public discussion of the administration and board's corruption of the running of the public schools.

It should not have been I or any citizen who had to attempt to get the truth out of Board Chair Falliero about her on-the-job affair. It should have Board Members Edgecomb, Olson, Kurdell, Lamb, Griffin, and Valdes.

These board members do not honor their promise to citizens to guard the interests of the taxpayers, students, and teachers when they allow a board member to have an affair on the job that results in her partner in the affair's getting squeezed out and with her remaining and becoming chair of the board who gavels down a citizen who asks for information on this affair.

And this citizen would have also asked, had Chair Falliero not gaveled her down, about the companion adultery of Chair Falliero's former coach husband and a middle-school principal without the principal's suffering dismissal along with Hart.

These disparate standards do not reflect a board that is vigilant and even mildly courageous enough to stand against the administration thuggery and take care of the public's interest in well-run schools without a bunch of rapscallions at the top that bloat their salaries with the board's rubberstamp and approve their sharp no-bid deals with buddies and former administrators with the board's collusion. Even Griffin and Valdes signed off on Elia's contract after they had given her bad marks on her evaluation, and Griffin and Valdes are supposed to be the best on the board. Some best. The public and school family have no representatives on the podium with grit enough to stand down the adminstration, the lawyer, and the other board members. It is simply the public bedamned and high ho, Silver, for the renegades that run the schools in the administration and on the board.

Lamb, Kurdel, and Edgecomb appear on the ballots for the upcoming election. Voters should hold their feet to the fire on the sorry jobs they have done to preserve and improve the schools for the benefit of the community's children.

Instead of being a check on the administration's lust for money and power, board members have colluded with it and forgotten the public's right to their allegiance and the right of the children and the teachers to be a part of the running of the schools. It has even abrogated the public's right to know under the public-records law the business record of the board and no-bid-contract lawyer by refusing to demand that he send the information the citizen has requested.

Not one member of the board has had the guts to say on the podium, "Madam Chair, I move that this board accord the teachers and students of the schools a special and reserved place in the board's agenda so that every meeting sees them able to come and feel welcome to talk about their concerns to the board and through the board to the public."

The board cooperates with the administration's business plan, which is to run the schools like a plantation with the board's and administration's sitting on the veranda at the Big House sipping mint juleps while the plantation grunts, teachers and students (the reason the government sends the administration tax money) tote that barge and lift that bale so that the swell folks of board and administration can continue their larking on the public dime.

Friday, December 14, 2007

It seems the data on the book censorship event is
more complicated than the version given me by the
Public Affairs Office, which may not have known the
details about which I later learned. At least I hope it
didn't for I have found Cobbe a reliable expert in her
job heretofore.

The supervisor of the middle-schools told the media
specialists to pull the book from the four middle schools
in which it was on the shelves.

She claims this was done with no prompting from
above, that she did so because the book bore the
label 9th grade and above. I find that hard to believe.
The administration will subject anyone who sneezes
to the gauntlet of Professional Standards Abu Graib,
so pulling books on one's own authority is not the
sort of thing field hands in fear of the lash would
initiate common sense tells me.

That the supervisor questioned their judgment
offended the four media specialists.

Apparently, middle schools have students as old
as 16 who have not graduated from middle school
to high school to whom this book

When the supervisor of the media specialists
learned the middle-school media specialists were
wroth at her decision to pull the books, she
reversed herself and said to put them back on
the shelves until the committee had made a
decision on the books.

Jennifer The Gavel Falliero sent Bart Birdsall,
media specialist, an email telling him the decision
was out of the board's hands now and in the hands
of the review committee. She wanted this hot potato
distanced from the board because the media bacame
interested in it.

The media can become interested in things from time to

And The Gavel Falliero does not want the media probing
the details of her turbulent personal life that spills over
into her professional life right now.

My question is why there was tumult on the podium
after the woman made her complaint about the book's
content, which Falliero called "repulsive," a condition
The Gavel may understand better than most on the podium.

Why didn't one or all of them say, "This has to go through
the usual procedure of a committee of parents', teachers',
and students' reviewing and judging it for suitability"?
Why did Ms. Elia start yammering about the state's
involvement? Why did Griffin say to be circumspect?
Why didn't the lawyer point out the policy? In short,
why didn't anybody on the podium know the policy?

They know their right to give bids to just-retired
administrators without a business-phone
protocol in place. Why haven't they mastered
the controls against censorship of books on the library

Is it because the former is important to them and the
latter isn't?

This was another instance of ubiquitous administration
incompetence--and this time joined by the board
incompetence. This lack of ready knowledge about
the procedure to protect against censorship and
book burning is the type of obtuse behavior that
does not justify the sky-high pay the administration
gets or these board members' getting elected, for
that matter.

And speaking of pay, the top administrators under
Ms. Elia whom she appoints and who are thus not
on the pay charts waived a whopping advance in
their pay prospects recently because they did
not want to make Ms. Elia look bad.

Of course, they would not have done so had a member
of the press not questioned them on the mentioned
writing about it. That's how these minions of tax-payer
pay largesse via the conduit of Elia with the board's rubber-
stamp advance up the ladder of complicity and big bucks
in this ROSSAC world of buddy administration:
protecting Ms. Elia from looking bad to the public.

Thu, 13 Dec 2007 17:45:09 EST

"Repulsive" text,,,,,,,,
Dear Board Chair Faliero,

I was surprised to see the Tampa Tribune article on by Marilyn Brown in which you are quoted saying that the book *Just Listen* by Sarah Dessen is "repulsive."

I believe you should always read a book in its entirety BEFORE passing judgment on it. Below is the school district's challenged book procedure:
B. The School Media Resources Committee will follow these procedures:

1.Read, view and/or listen to the material in its entirety and complete the appropriate checklist.

2.Read reviews of the material in professional reviewing sources.

3.Determine the extent to which the material supports the curriculum.

4.Weigh merits against alleged faults in light of the material
as a whole, rather than isolated passages out of context.

5.Meet as a group and discuss material prior to examining complainant's completed form.

6.Reach a decision and prepare a
written report.

7.Send a copy of the report to the principal, the media supervisor, and appropriate subject-area supervisors.

In the excerpt above I did not highlight anything myself. It was copied and pasted from the school district website exactly how I found it. Notice that Number 1 says that you should read material "in its entirety".....
I hear through the grapevine that Candy Olson has asked for a copy of the book to read. That is the intelligent response before passing judgment on a book. In fact, we ask outraged parents to do the same.
I urge you to read the book in its entirety before you decide whether you consider it to be repulsive.

I would also hesitate to take anyone serious who finds a passage disgusting and wants a book taken off shelves when she feels free to read the very passage aloud on television on a show that will be replayed over and over and will be available online. If she wants to protect children, she would avoid this. This is not someone who is playing with a full deck, in my opinion. According to the article she is allowing her child to read the book now. Meanwhile, she wants to keep other children from reading it. This is bizaare behavior. It is not rational behavior whatsoever, and I am disappointed that a school board member and a Superintendent would take such a person seriously.

History does not judge people who want to ban books well. Below is a list of books that have been banned across the nation through the years:
A Raisin in the Sun
Fahrenheit 451
Heart of Darkness
Of Mice and Men
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
The Joy Luck Club
Brave New World
Bridge to Terabithia
The Catcher in the Rye
The Color Purple
The Outsiders
James and the Giant Peach
The Grapes of Wrath
The Scarlet Letter
To Kill a Mockingbird
The list goes on and on......most people who push for the banning of books end up looking like laughingstocks and fools or backwater, country bumpkins who are uneducated. It is not shocking to hear of book banning in Alabama, but it is quite shocking in cosmopolitan places like New York, San Francisco, and probably the entire continent of Europe. Rational people laugh at these book banning people, not only when the person challenges the book right then and there but for years and years after. Like I said, history does not judge them well at all.

As school district personnel we have a duty to the American public to honor our founding fathers' wishes of Intellectual Freedom and to take on a leadership position in educating the public about books. I have never seen one single piece of research that proves that books harm a child. Parents should thank God their child is reading anything nowdays, because to read is to raise awareness and to become more intelligent. More information is never a bad thing.

My parents allowed me to read anything and everything when I was in elementary, middle, and high school. I read *Looking for Mr. Goodbar* in middle school with their approval. They trusted my judgment. Interestingly enough most of my friends consider me a total prude, and my life reads almost like a 1950s story. Meanwhile, every single person I have known in life who is OUTRAGED by things like this book are doing all sorts of things behind closed doors. I find the hypocrisy amazing.

Exposure to literary texts do not corrupt a child. Exposure to hypocrisy does.

I urge you to read the book and to uphold the principles that American democracy and EDUCATION stand for......

Bart Birdsall

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Thu, 13 Dec 2007 11:23:09 -0800 (PST)

"lee decesare" View Contact Details  View Contact Details Add Mobile Alert
Subject: Re: censorship
To:"Linda Cobbe"

Linda Cobbe, external communications manager, says that the book remains on the shelf with a
cautionary sticker. She says the Armwood parent's concern will go through the procedure of convening a committee of parents, students, and teachers to recommend pulling the
book or keeping it on the shelf in the library.
Ms. Cobbe: OK. I will post this. But I got a call saying the media specialists were concerned because the book was being taken off the shelf. I infer that was a false alarm. ldd

lee decesare <> writes:
I just got a call saying the book Just Listen by Sarah Dessen that the parent complained about at the last board meeting has been pulled by someone's authority from the library shelves. Is this rumor true? Who authorized the removal of the book if so? Was it a verbal or written authorization? Did the board members approve this censorship?

Please send a copy of your response as well to the local ACLU contact, Michael Pherger; ACLU is monitoring this situation and needs this information.

Ms. Griffin was the sole board member who asked Ms. Elia to be circumspect in any action responding to this one parent's complaint. Did Ms. Griffin get notification and did she approve removing the book from the library shelves if that is what happened?

May I have a copy of the section of the board notes that catalogues the parent's objections to the book and the board's response to her objection? She spoke just before I did when I got gaveled down by Chair Falierro. ldd

lee drury de cesare

Censorship on the March in the Schools

Date: Thu, 13 Dec 2007 09:30:54 -0800 (PST)
From:lee de cesare
Subject: censorship
CC:"michael pheneger"
I just got a call saying that somebody has given the order to pull the the book from the library shelves (Just Listen by Sarah Dessen) that one parent complained about at the last board meeting

Is this information correct?

Who authorized the removal of the book if so? Was it a verbal or written authorization? Did the board members approve this censorship?

Please send a copy of your response as well to the local ACLU contact, Michael Pherger; ACLU is monitoring this situation and needs this information.

Ms. Griffin was the sole board member who asked Ms. Elia to be circumspect in any action responding to this one parent's complaint. Did Ms. Griffin get notification and did she approve removing the book from the library shelves if that is what happened?

May I have a copy of the section of the board notes that catalogues the parent's objections to the book and the board's response to her objection? She spoke just before I did when I got gaveled down by Chair Falierro. ldd

lee drury de cesare

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

"Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily defeat us."—Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas

"Doretha Edgecomb" , susan.valdes@, candy.olson@sdhc.,,,,,,,,

Ms. Elia: The sentiment on the podium last night at the board meeting to pull a book from the shelves of the library concerned me. The board and administration should not succumb to the urging of one parent to ban a book. Bart Birdsall, who has won awards in the field of library integrity, has sent you and the board enough material on the issue to educate you to the larger implications of any threat of censorship by the board and the administration.

I fear your tendency is to cave to bigots or people with narrow views. That was what you did when the know-nothings attacked the Muslin children as "towel heads" in the religious-holiday controversy.

I am a registered nurse and have done quite a bit of psychiatric nursing. So Chair Faliera's tantrum last night on the podium when she gaveled down my right to free speech in a forum that is supposed to allow a citizen to approach her elected officials for redress of grievances did not alarm me.

In the hospital, we put hyperactive patients in a little canvas restraint called a camisole that crosses their arms in front of them and ties in the back. We take it off when they calm down. Maybe you should order a camisole for Ms. Faliera's tenure as chair of the board. She appears to lack self-control.

Private sex is just that: private; but when it takes place in the school environment, it is no longer private: it is public and susceptible to public scrutiny and judgment.

Had Ms. Faliera not gaveled me down, I would have continued to ask questions. For example, I would have asked you to tell if you pressured Mark Hart to resign to squelch the emerging rumors. I know how sensitive you are about sexual rumors since you blackmailed Patrick Manteiga with the threat of suing La Gazeta because I said in a column that the school administrators shouldn't have slept their way to the top. Not one member of the school board critisized your blackmailing the press's First Amendment rights.

There is no indication of why Hart left employment in his file. I reviewed it before the board meeting, and it is stripped clean. The Public Relations staff even had to send up to the personnel people to get the piece of paper saying he had resigned "for personal reasons." Correction: It had been removed by a reporter earlier I learned. ldd

The reasons for his departure were both personal and public. The reasons took place in the schools and Rossac in part. That makes Hart's and Falliera's case public business just as Mr. Clinton's Oval-Office activities were public business. And it is as well public business to know if you pressured Mr. Hart to resign and why. In a court case's deposition, you would be obliged to reveal the circumstances of Mr. Hart's leaving and any administration pressure on him to do so. And so would he. So would Ms. Falliera. People can't fudge truth in a deposition. We none can lie to the court.

Hart's file shows he graduated from Loyola magna cum laude. That is a good school and an impressive academic record. The administration does not have many people with distinguished academic degrees on its staff. The majority seem to have early-childhood degrees from undistinguished institutions. Cathy Valdez has an early-childhood degree, for instance, I saw in her file. It was she in her bloated-pay current job for which you hired her who recommended hiring a recently retired Hillsborough County administrator without bids who did not have a business phone with a person answering it. I suspect she did so at your behest.

La Gaceta's published inability to get a live voice on the so-called business phone of this retired administrator did not burnish his credentials. Nor did the fact that when I called his home, a woman with a Minnie- Pearl delivery said, "It's another beautiful day. Let's live it for the Lord!" buttress the credentials of the business. These phone contacts did not support Ms. Valdez's assertions in the board meeting that the retired administrator was highly professional and respected throughout the state.

My belief is that if Ms. Valdez had a more gravid college degree and background, that she would have had the sophistication and business judgment not to recommend the recently retired Hillsborouch County school administrator who got the
$148,000 job without bids. And if you were not steeped in the malignant buddy culture that engulfs the administration, you would not have insisted on Ms. Valdez's giving him a no-bid plum contract when he had had no contracts from any source in his business history.

You should have taken measures to keep Mr. Hart as long as Ms. Faliera remains. You exercised one-sided punishment and deprived the schools of an intelligent, well-trained, honorably-degreed administrator whose abilities far outstrip Ms. Falliera's, who's hanging on to her board seat for dear life now it appears.

Poignant was the information given in one of Hart's recommendations that he is a strict practicing Catholic and devoted to his faith. His psychological misery now must be acute. He once told me when I complained about his increased salary when he came back from his brief resignation to work at some Eckerd enterprise that he and his wife had a traditional family outlook and believed the wife should stay home with the children and only the husband work. His situation with Ms. Faliera shattered this Catholic family--as it did Ms. Faliera's because she got divorced as well. Both involved children.

The psychiatric community tells us that children never get over parents' divorce--that even as middle-aged adults they still suffer the wounds of their parents' leaving each other. If you cared about children, you would have counseled both Faliera and Hart to cut out the erotic pranks on school time and lead straight married lives for their children's sakes.

And you would have monitored them to see that they did so. You know well how to monitor and have Ms. Kipley's enthusiastic cooperation in that activity. You monitor for the wrong things, however. You monitor members of the school family who say the least little thing critical of the school administration. You even manufacture cases against them as you did in Bart Birdsall's case. You monitor to injure them and possibly fire them because you lust to retain your power and want no critics in the ranks. But you could have monitored an infidelity adventure that harmed children as well. That would be a benign use of your monitoring penchant.

I also want to know whether the principal who rumor says was linked to Coach Faliera concomitantly met with punishment as Hart did. If not, why not? I see that Coach Faliera resigned shortly after his divorce. I want to know if you forced that resignation too. That's information the public has a right to know.

And I would have asked the board lawyer to say what advice he gave you on school sex with its public dimensions. When two people work for the same outfit, the inferior party can file with the EEOC against the superior party for sexual coercion. I believe that means Coach Falliera and Mr. Hart could have filed against the school board since they were the inferiors in employment to the principal and Ms. Falliera. Such cases are numerous now as more people become aware of their rights under Title VII. Madison Square Garden just paid a settlement of over 9 million dollars to one woman with three more lined up to file charges against the Garden.

It is reckless management to allow employees to engage or try to engage in sex on the job since Title VII went on the books. These peccadilloes can end up in the court with big money settlements for the injured parties.

More significant than the cases above, however, is the threat of censorship and book burning, the sentiments for which I detected support especially from you on the podium last night. No superintendent who cares about learning removes books from library shelves to propitiate a parent who does not understand the right of the freedom to read in a democracy. I have asked for the ACLU to monitor this situation and see that you and the benighted members of the board whose attitude toward freedom of information and freedom from censorship do not engage in a local book burning that injures the students and gives the community a black eye for having a crude attitude toward literature and sex.

The irony of this situation is that it's not OK for children to read about rape but that it's OK for rapes to continue and for illicit sex to find a venue in the school environment itself. The schools have a problem acknowledging sex. That's why the administration punished little girl who reported the molestation by suspending her in the recent case in which she reported that a teacher was molesting a child. I believe school people knew about the molestation and were so intent on denying it that they did not report it and punished the child who did. A pschiatrist told me that punishment for telling the truth damaged that little girl's psyche severely.

And also this: tell the board chair to instruct the board lawyer to send me the public information about his firm's relationship with the board. One of the things I want confirmed is that Dr. Lennard gave Mr. Gonzalez's firm a no-bid contract that none of the firms in town had a chance to offer competitive bids on. So Mr. Gonzalez's recent zealous comments in favor of the no-bid protocol were interested, not disinterested, and hence the board should not listen to his advice on no-bids.

The lawyer's relationship with the school board is public information. The state manual on this law says so. A lawyer can't stonewall and a board can't assist him in evading a citizen's right to the information requested under the open-records law. I don't want to have to begin to leaflet the Florida bar, the Attorney General, the governor, and the state board of education to get the Hillsborough County board attorney to obey the public-records law.

Pray see that he gets the message from the board to do so, or I will have to include all board members in my complaints about non-compliance with the open-government law if it comes to that.

lee drury de cesare

From:"Kathleen de la Peña McCook" Add to Address BookAdd to Address Book Add Mobile Alert
Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2007 22:17:05 -0500
Subject: Bart Birdsall letter,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
If you make the text below blue, you
can read that which spills over into
the black part of the page. lee

Aside from the particulars this is a powerful letter from a front
line librarian. No wonder Bart Birdsall was selected as a national
example of thoughtful, passionate concern for library freedom and
service as a Library Journal honoree 2 years ago. He is the kind of
man that will make the school district stand tall and not melt into a
puddle of turgid blandness.
--Kathleen de la Pena McCook

On 11 Dec 2007 at 22:01, wrote:

Dear Superintendent Elia and School Board Members:

I watched tonight's school board meeting with dismay. One parent's
complaint about a book should NOT determine whether a book is taken
off library shelves or not. A passage read out of context should not
decide whether a book is taken off the shelf or not. Superintendent
Elia's comments made it sound like this book may very well be taken
out of all schools and that she might work with the entire state to
censor this book statewide. I hope I did not misunderstand.

As a community member and as a librarian I believe censoring
books does students a disservice. I am intelligent because I read
everything and anything I wanted my entire life with full approval of
my parents. Sheltering children from real life does nothing but leave
them unprepared to deal with life's challenges.

With that said I do not advocate putting pornography in school
libraries. I have not read this book, but I plan to read it asap. I
want to see what I think of the overriding message of this book.
For every parent such as Melissa Burt there are parents like my
parents who would NOT want this book taken off the shelf. I read the
Marquis de Sade in high school which is one of the most graphic and
bizaare writers you can read.I was allowed to read everything and
anything, and it did not harm me in the slightest.

No one has a right to deny others from reading a book. Like I
said, for every parent who wants a graphic book removed, you will
find other parents who feel the book should not be censored.
We librarians attempt to purchase age appropriate books. However,
there are many, many reading levels, cultures, and maturity levels.
We have to provide reading material for EVERY child, every culture in
our school, every maturity level. It is a daunting task. Parents who
are conservative should police their children's reading material and
not attempt to keep others from reading materials whose parents may
have no problem whatsover. My parents would have never worried about
the passage read aloud at the board meeting even if my late sister or
I read it in elementary school, and I can produce my very intelligent
parents at a board meeting if necessary to corroborate that

Before any action is taken concerning this book every single
board member and the Superintendent should read the book in its
entirety, and the decision should NOT be done by one person, one
parent, one school board member, one district supervisor, or one

I will be discussing the issue with the ACLU and other community
groups, because I am very, very concerned about this issue and about
how the school board caves into a small group of parents (or one
parent) at the drop of the hat. Intellectual Freedom (please see and search "Intellectual Freedom") is one of the foundations
of democracy, in my opinion. We must strive to protect Intellectual

The passage the parent read at the board meeting was graphic, but
it probably reflects many of our students' experiences. Many are
raped, and unless you read the book in its entirety and understand
what context the passage is found, you can not make a judgment. What
if this book gives some child solace reading about her own experience
in life? It might keep her from committing suicide. We read to see
ourselves. Censoring these books often means censoring
children's/teen's experiences in life. Chris Crutcher, a well known
young adult writer, has his books taken off library shelves often,
and he says it well, "To censor my books is to censor those
children's lives, b/c I got these storiesfrom real children."

Once you start picking and choosing which books belong on a
library shelf, you start on a slippery slope, and about one half of
ALL library books in all grade levels can be challenged and removed,
if we open the floodgates, and we will not have any books on the

This is un-American and anti-Democracy. I urge you to think very
carefully about proceeding with issues in which the district attempts
to censor books.

Currently, the Hillsborough Countyprocedure is for the parent to
read the book completely first. If the parent is still angry, the
parent can have the school convene a committee that every single
media specialist forms at the beginning of year which requires
community members as well as administrators. Then, as a GROUP the
committee decides whether it should be kept on the shelves or not.
Each school has a different culture, and a book should not be taken
off shelves without a group effort and following the procedure. A
book taken off one shelf should not be taken off another library's
shelf. If a parent can go to the board and ignore the school
procedure, why have a procedure in place?

Ihope to speak to the ACLUabout this book, and I hope that all
of you will read the book, analyze its literary value, how that
passage fits into the book, the overriding message of the book, and
whether some students may find solace in such a book.

Maybe the book has no literary value. I will read it myself and
see, but I believe it probably does, if it landed on the statewide
teen reading list.

Parents have a hard time understanding that their very own
children rights that go beyond what the parent may want the child to
have. Many children are molested by their very own parents, and they
have no where to turn sometimes except to a book on incest in a
school library that might help the child deal with the issue. Teen
pregnancy books and incest books are often stolen out of school
libraries, b/c the child does not want to check it out but
desperately needs the information. Some of these children will never
go to their parents about these issues.

We need to look at the bigger picture, people.

Books do not harm children. Adult reactions to booksdo. I would
like any proof from research studies showing that literary books harm
children. I have never come across such a research study. Before you
think about removing a book, please find research that shows stories
harm children.

Bart Birdsall

Bart Birdsall
2309 W. Bristol Ave.
Tampa, FL 33609

home (813) 258-8817
cell (813) 362-7937

Ms. Cobbe: I post this as a correction. ldd
Date: Wed, 12 Dec 2007 17:31:18 -0500
Subject: Re: public information
To:"lee decesare"
From:"Linda Cobbe" View Contact Details  View Contact Details Add Mobile Alert
You left last night before I could give you the copy of Mark Hart's resignation form. I need to correct your assumption that it was left out of his file on purpose. I had that file in my possession after Letitia Stein had reviewed it. I know it was in there when I gave her the file to review. She must have taken that form out.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Gloria and Lee 1970

Date: Fri, 7 Dec 2007 23:09:16 -0800 (PST)
From:"lee decesare" View Contact Details  View Contact Details Add Mobile Alert
Subject: Ignoring the Needs of Minority Children,

Ms. Ethridge: This NYT article outlines the needs of your natural constituency--minority children. I never hear you utter a word on the podium in their behalf. Instead, I hear you dithering about exploring the cul-de-sacs of some policy like the outrageous no-bid situation on the 16th and then voting for it nonetheless.

I understand the black woman who preceded you was outspoken about the needs of minority children and had eyes raised behind her back mocking her by the board and administration bigots. Any black board member should be willing to ignore such bigots' disapproval and plow on to help the minority children, who should get a black board member's care and attention.

Another black woman who is hostile to the needs of minority children is Dr. Stephenson at HCC. She just presided over a proposal to kick out the minority children that comprise most of Head Start's long-time program at HCC. She claims the Headstart children's presence interferes with the college's "business plan."

I went to an HCC board meeting to speak against kicking out the Head Start children. It is dismaying to see Black women such as you and Dr. Stephenson get into positions of authority and then show that they are indifferent to the needs of those left behind in the ghetto. That's the situation that Gunnar Myrdahl explores in An American Dilemma. You could have been in the cast of characters.

Lee Drury De Cesare
Date: Sun, 09 Dec 2007 12:51:12 -0500
Subject: Re: Ignoring the Needs of Minority Children
To:"lee decesare",
From:"Doretha Edgecomb" Add to Address BookAdd to Address Book Add Mobile Alert
Ms. DeCeesare,

You are certainly entitled to your opinion. As a teacher, district level supervisor, principal, and now as a board member, I have no regrets about how I get things done. I have a long history and record of advocacy, action, and support for minority students. I am sure you are aware that one's work is not always before the cameras or that one's strong and persistent voice is not always through a microphone. Yet, I have spoken up, asked the hard questions, and challenged many decisions, now and in the past, - all part of the process for getting things done! Perhaps you missed those moments.

At the end of the day what is most important and what will be valued and evaluated are the results of my actions and my unrelenting commitment. I believe those who know me well neither question nor doubt my contributions or sincerity to ensure that minority students are afforded the best education possible. In fact, I work to support quality education for ALL STUDENTS and when I do that I am also creating opportunities for students who look like me.

Doretha W. Edgecomb
School Board Member
District 5
Hillsborough County Public Schools

All correspondences including email sent to School Board members or School District staff are considered public records, per Florida Statute 119.

Date: Sun, 09 Dec 2007 12:51:12 -0500
Subject: Re: Ignoring the Needs of Minority Children
To:"lee decesare",
From:"Doretha Edgecomb"
Date: Sun, 9 Dec 2007 18:01:50 -0800 (PST)
From:"lee decesare" View Contact Details  View Contact Details Add Mobile Alert
Subject: Re: Ignoring the Needs of Minority Children
To:"Doretha Edgecomb" ,,,,,,,,

All children don't need your advocacy. The ones in Beach Park where my four children went to school don't. South Tampa parents would make the members of the administration sorry they got up in the morning if they thought the administration were neglecting their children.

It's the ones who look like you and also the Hispanic children who need your muscle on the board. It's the ones who have poor parents who don't speak English well or only one parent in a single-parent household. That's the burden of the NYT article I sent you.

Where were you when the migrant farm-worker families' children were thrown under the bus during the incompetent bus dispensation? Ms. Valdes was there. Even Ms. Elia showed up after the Times had published the outrage. You didn't.

I suspect your spiel about your dense commitment to minority children's needs would not produce any solid evidence to back it up. Give me a bibliography on your claims.

The only admirable thing I am aware of that you have done on the board is not to throw the Muslim children to the wolves in the religious-holiday fracas. The bigots emerged from the fens and the bogs of ignorance on the outer banks of Wimauma to howl imprecations at the "towelheads" for besmirching Christianity. God forbid that Jesus had to depend on these unlovely specimens. Ms. Elia buckled to the bigots instantly.

Use the bigot approach on Ms. Elia. If you are polite to her, she mistakes your decorum for weakness. So howl at her in the fens-and-the bogs mode. Fens-and-bogs dialect is the language she understands.

lee drury de cesare