Friday, October 23, 2009

Spread the Good News

In Egypt, where else? The camel drivers told my husband that he should get rid of that "skinny old white woman and get yourself several plump harem girls." Women are slightly below camels in status in Egypt.

National School Boards Association:

One notes that Broward County's schools have been one of your winners for excellence. Hillsborough County Schools have won the top award in the past.

One wonders in addition how in the world your organization selects such undeserving winners of your top awards.

Broward County schools are now under investigation for corruption by the federal government. So far a school board member has been arrested for taking bribes. The Miami Herald says more arrests for school corruption are expected.

Hillsborough County schools have long-term hiring irregularities. It cites but doesn't follow its equal-employment-opportunity mantra. The board and administration hire buddies, relatives, and sycophants to administrative jobs with bloated salaries. A prime example is that the head of the Professional Standards office makes $150,000 a year and has only a home ec degree; recently the board and administration hired her husband with a high school degree to an accounting job for which he had neither the education nor the experience called for in the job description. I examined the applications thanks to the Florida open records law. Four candidates had the requisite degrees and experience. One was a handicapped woman.

The schools are supposed to have affirmative action plans for the handicapped if they receive federal funds. Hillsborough County Schools lacks such plan.

The board attorney, Tom Gonzalez, hinted in public board meeting that he could sue me for extortion if I asked the federal grant givers for a compliance review of the administration's and board's compliance with the equal-opportunity hiring that federal grants require. Mr. Gonzalez thought I didn't know that the SLAPP law prevents public officials' lawyers from suing citizens for criticism of officials' conduct of their office.

Ms. Kipley, the head of the Professional Standards Office, acts as ringmaster of the administration and board's campaign to keep teachers intimidated and thus silent for fear of losing their jobs so that the power of the board and administration is not threatened by public exposure. The Professional Standards Office acts the tool to accomplish this situation. If teachers speak out or have an education blog, their jobs are in jeopardy of having a cooked-up Professional Standards charge filed against them to shut them up.

Surely your organization has the resources to review closely the school candidates for the awards you give out. Otherwise, you do more harm than good and sanctify corruption in school systems with awarding honors to school districts such as those in Broward and Hillsborough County.

Lee Drury De Cesare
15316 Gulf Boulevard 802
Madeira Beach, FL 33708


Anonymous said...

You ask how these school boards win awards. Simple. They throw the names of the district in a hat and close their eyes and pull out a paper, or maybe they do eeny, meeny, miney moe! That is the only explanation for the winners, because everyone knows it can't be a deserved win.

Anonymous said...

lee, you're a fox !! In more ways than one. My family LOVED this pic of you...