Saturday, December 19, 2009

When in doubt: nag, dammit, nag

My legacy

George Sheldon, Secretary

Department of Children and Families

1317 Wineward Boulevard

Tallahassee, FL 323990700


Dear Mr. Sheldon:

I attach the message I received from regional director young Mr. Nicholas Cox in response to my charges of child abuse by the board and administration of the Hillsborough County schools. I attach in addition the complaint I made to the Department of Children and Families about abuse of severely retarded children in the Hillsborough County school system that Mr. Cox blows off.

One knew immediately that one dealt with a bureaucrat of unusual importance from the illegible flourish of Mr. Cox's signature. Were the semiotics of this rococo John Henry not sufficient to signal Mr. Cox's eminence in the state labyrinth of government bureaucracy, the catalog of tax-paid jobs listed in his Web resume neutralize any doubts. Mr. Cox has been in the system so long that he is adept at all evasions, feints, and kick-to-the-curb maneuvers to short-change a citizen's request for him to do his job, which is to protect vulnerable children that people report to the state agency.

Mr. Cox said that your agency's child-abuse people do "not have the authority over employees of the Hillsborough County Public Schools" so that, in effect, any children abused in that conglomerate would just have to tough out the abuse.

This cruel logic leads one to ask this question: Which other institutions in the county are beyond the reach of the child-abuse people so that children enmeshed in those can't get help from the state agency charged with protecting abused children? What about Dillards? the Tampa Dog Track? McDonald's?

Mr. Cox also suggested that I petition Superintendent Elia to correct the problem. Ms. Elia resides at the base of the problem. She has presided over this situation about which I complain and done nothing to correct it. The Cox suggestion is analogous to referring me to Darth Vader to solve the problem of his android intergalactic army's shooting death rays at the humanoids in space.

Mr. Cox also gives me another that's-not-my-job referral to the sheriff's office. The sheriff is the default hidey hole to which the bureaucratic mind resorts when evading what a tax-paid employee was hired to do.

I judge the dilemma of Mr. Cox's inability to deal with the child-abuse problem I laid before him stems from the phenomenon of tribal ethics. Mr. Cox joins three women on the Children's Board from the county school system: Superintendent Elia, Board Member Doretha Ethridge, and a third female school admninistrative functionary whom I do not recognize.

I infer that Mr. Cox does not want to cloud the Children's Board's chirpy meetings with any unpleasant data about abuse of children--plus everybody knows how women in packs scare men to death.

If I thought that you had mentored Mr. Cox's evasion of his job, Mr. Sheldon, my complaint would be about your slack devotion to duty instead of his dance of evasion. I will assume these maladroit escape maneuvers originated with him and that you knew nothing about this operative's

actions in the field.

A review of the agency's capacity, functions, and scope as presented on the Web raises public information questions for this citizen:

I request 1. confirmation of the number of 14,000 that I believe one site said was the total employment of the families-and-children division over which you preside. Please confirm or correct that figure and tell me 2. what the total payout from tax dollars is that subsidizes these child-protection functionaries.

I request as well 3. your salary and 4. that of Mr. Cox.

I find incredible that out of 14,000 people, there is not at least one who could have solved the problem of the abuse of retarded children in the Hillsborough County school system and used the power of the child-abuse agency to stop the abuse. That no one had an answer except "That's not our job" says that the agency lacks employees with sufficient mental capacity and problem-solving abilities to deal with unorthodox or new problems. As such, they don't deserve the salary they get from taxpayers.

A Web review of the agency suggests that a whole lot of energy goes into summits of the agency's upper crust in discussions of the metaphysics of the peripherals, the non-substantive chewing of the agency fat about this, that, and the other in the subjunctive mood.

I imagine these summits cost money for food, drink, and a place big enough to hold the agency attendees and their grandee guests.

I suggest a summit on what is apparently the novel problem that I have presented to Mr. Cox, who himself has dodged the bullet of responsibility for its solution. Part of the discussion should deal, of course, with the interlocking bonhomie of state agencies such as child protection and school systems. This buddy status pinpoints the children's welfare bureaucracy's unwillingness to tackle problems such as the one I present that its minions evade from fear that their doing something about a problem such as I lay bare challenges the suppleness of the child-protection agency in facing and solving rare and challenging problems that infringe on the territory of other giant bureaucracies such as school systems.

I would like to audit such a conference were it to occur, an event which I judge to have a snowball's chance in hell of taking place.

I would like to point out that Mr. Cox's airy response to me couched in the cotton-wadding rhetoric of bureaucratese violates Governor Crist's Executive Order 07-01, the plain-language amendment.

I still am not sure what the young man is talking about. And there exists a good chance that he doesn't know either.

One of the child welfare agency's pages lists members of the state advisory board. There are no addresses or emails attached. Please see that these people get a copy of this mailing. It's the sort of dilemma with which the advisory members need to wrestle with so as to give your agency guidance. I believe this advisory panel will be astonished at the photo of the junk room that comprises the classroom for retarded students in the Hillsborough County schools. I was.


Lee Drury De Cesare

15316 Gulf Boulevard 802

Madeira Beach, FL 33709

c: Governor Crist

Attorney General McCollum

Secretary of Education Smith

All Members Hillsborough County School Board

All Members Hillsborough County Children's Board


To: Florida Child Abuse Agency

From: Lee Drury De Cesare; citizen, 15316 Gulf Boulevard 802; Madeira Beach, FL33708;727-398-4142;

Subject: Systemic Child Abuse in the Hillsborough County Special Education Department

Please consider this a formal request for the Florida Child Welfare Agency to review the patterns and practices of abuse by administrators in the Hillsborough County Special Education Department and in the Personnel and Professional Standards offices.

Practices of administrative child abuse came to light during a false charge of child abuse against a teacher by special ed administrators Smiley, Morris, and Sosa. He suffered extended punishment.

Teacher Steve Kemp has an education blog that sometimes includes issues that relate to the Hillsborough County schools. The blog is serious and deals with education issues in a respectful manner. It sometimes discusses issues that relate to the Hillsborough County school system.

Reader comments may be flippant, but Editor Kemp's comments are uniformly serious. Nevertheless, the blog caused the Professional Standards office to target Mr. Kemp on any pretext because the administration and board hate blogs because blogs provide information that does not agree with the Community Affairs' sanitized information of board and administration activities and decisions to make them look good

The problem with Mr. Kemp's blog or any blog comes down to the fact that the administration and board want only information sanitized by the Community Affairs staff to reach the public about their running of the schools.

In a broader sense, the reason for board and administration hostility to teacher blogs has to do with their unwillingness to tolerate Constitutional free-speech discussions about the school system's administrative and board actions. They want to hide from the public what really goes on in administrative and board activities and decisions so that the public will remain ignorant of anything amiss and will believe that the Community Affairs gloss of school matters constitutes valid report of what goes on in the schools.

Innocuous as it was, Teacher Kemp's education blog represented a threat to that public-relations system of sanitizing reporting on the board's and administration's activities and decisions, hence was viewed by the board and ROSSAC administration as a threat that put Mr. Kemp on the administration's troublemaker watch list. Teachers on this watch list are charged with Professional Standards violations to scare them about losing their job so that they discontinue blogs.

Teacher Kemp's class did not make a year ago, so Section 5 Supervisor Smiley and Principal Morris threw him into a classroom of profoundly retarded children whom he lacked training to superintend. He did not know the state restraint laws, for example.

Both Mr. Smiley's and Ms. Morris's job descriptions say that they are supposed to brief teachers before sending them into a classroom. One infers that this administrative obligation especially applies to teachers such as Kemp, who don't know the rules in a new teaching environment. Smiley and Morris ignored their documented duty and injected Steve Kemp into a classroom of profoundly retarded students with no briefing by the two administrators as was their obligation according to their job descriptions. An administrator named Sosa was also involved.

The department's giving seminars in different aspects of special ed testifies to special-ed's teachers' not knowing all aspects of the field.

Morris, Sosa, and Smiley should have known that fact and responded by briefing Steve on what he did not know about care rituals of the children whom these senior supervisors put him in charge of .

The state restraint law represented a mystery to Steve. Mr. Smiley and Principal Morris gave Steve no data on restraint policy before putting him into a class room for profoundly retarded students.

Two of the retarded youngsters were large boys of about 175 pounds each whom wanted to escape from the classroom by slipping out a door.

Worth noting is that besides the door to the hall, a door to an adjoining classroom was left unlocked. Steve Kemp says this room contained medical substances which if ingested by the wandering boys could have been injurious or worse.

More evidence of supervisory careless attitudes toward student safety is that the supervisors had put these profoundly retarded children in a storage room instead of a classroom. The storage room had large objects with loose articles piled on top. The objects were pushed up against the room's walls. The two retarded boys were especially curious to investigate these insecure piles of materials and could reach to the top of the large objects to dislodge and cause fall the objects scattered atop them The falling objects would endanger themselves and others.

The senior teacher left Steve alone with the class while she went on some errand. The two large boys were in a mood to slip out of the classroom. Steve found a cord (given the inflammatory designation of a "coaxial cable" in the Professional Standards report) and looped it through the back of one boy's bus restraint to keep him from escaping while Steve chased the other escaping boy.

This stationery boy had still worn what apparently was a bus restraint. If I correctly understand the online state restraint guidelines, an attendant should have be removed the bus restraint when the student arrived in the classroom.

But the previous attendant had left the bus restraint on the student. One infers that this regular staff person did not remove the bus restraint for staff convenience so that an attendant would not have to go to the trouble of putting the restraint on the boy again at the end of the day. This dereliction of state restraint rules by regular staff apparently went unadmonished and unreported to Professional Standards by the supervisory staff of Mr. Smiley and Ms. Morris.

After Steve had pulled the cord through the loops in the back of the bus restraint and secured the seated student to the desk, Mr. Smiley and Ms. Morris entered the room.

Ms. Morris told Steve to remove the cord from the back of the bus restraint apparatus, that she "didn't want to lose my job." Steve says she gave the information quietly, but Ms. Morris reported to the Professional Standards investigator according to the investigator's notes that she had raised the roof.

Mr. Smiley said nothing. He later maintained that the cord that Steve had looped to the bus restraint in the back went all the way around the boy. A physical-therapy observer refused to confirm this statement of Mr. Smiley.

After these scenes, six days later Mr. Smiley went down to the Sheriff's office and filed a felony child-abuse complaint against Steve Kemp. Ms. Morris backed him up and augmented her performance when she had discovered that Steve had looped the cord through the back of the bus restraint's loops..

Why these two administrators left a child abuser teacher in charge of these same children in the same classroom for the next six days after deeming him a child abuser remains a mystery of these special-ed administrative minds.

The sheriff dismissed the charge the same day Mr. Smiley filed it.

If one were to ask me why I think Mr. Smiley and Ms. Ross filed a cooked-up charge against Steve Kemp from circumstances that the sheriff found unworthy of a charge as well as a charge with the Professional Standards office, I would say that I infer that they thought lying about a substitute teacher's behavior ranked in their ethics system an acceptable way to call attention to themselves in the administrative hierarchy to hasten their climb up the employment ladder perhaps even as far as an office in ROSSAC. Despite the Sheriff's throwing Mr. Smiley's charge against Kemp out, the Professional Standards office kept the charge extant for more than a year during which he was put on suspension with all the attendant worries of losing his job.

After a year had elapsed with Steve still on suspension, board member Susan Valdes asked Mr. Valdez, personnel director, how much longer the suspension would be in effect. Mr. Valdez said it was hard to tell because the investigation was incomplete. Ms. Valdes made no follow-up question. Nor did any of the other board members ask a question about this mysterious prolongation of a charge the sheriff had thrown out the day Mr. Smiley filed it.

A rational person would say that the few people interviewed should not have consumed a year's time. So there must have been some other motive unfolding. It is hard not to conclude that Mr. Valdez was foot dragging at the behest of the superintendent to pressure Steve Kemp to abandon his blog and to serve as an example to frighten the district's teachers so that they would not question the board and administration's mess-ups..

I believe a state agency such as yours, Mr. Cox, can get a copy of the Professional Standards account of this charge gratis and make your own judgment about the Professional Standards case against Teacher Kemp based on Mr. Smiley's and Ms. Morris's assertions. I had to pay $73.00 for mine as a citizen.

The fact remains that the board and administration kept Mr. Kemp on suspension for over a year because of this false restraint charge of child abuse while the administrators themselves had committed a series of actions that endangered the welfare of the children. But the Professional Standards office punished no one but teachers. Administrators, no matter how egregious their behavior, are exempt from Professional Standards punishment.

Thank goodness, Steve refused to buckle to administration-and-board coercion and still maintains his blog. That is the only good thing that has come out of this bizarre case. It gave a lone teacher the opportunity to stand up for his individual rights and dignity.

I infer that publicity on the Kemp case by blogs and comments from the public at board meetings effected Steve's being taken off suspension and returned to the classroom after more than a year. The administration and board are reluctant to have the public know how badly they treat teachers because the public loves teachers of their own school years and reveres the teachers of the present who teach their children. This affection finds expression in John Adams' remark that "teachers affect eternity; you never know where their influence stops."

The administration via Professional Standards added three non-paid days to Steve's punishment from no cause but administration pressure to make him shut down his blog. These were in addition to the more than a year suspension he had already served.

Steve is now back in the classroom this semester, a sadder but a wiser pedagogue, but the board attorney, Mr. Gonzalez, delivered a thinly veiled, crude threat after Steve addressed the board to ask why his case got such different treatment from that of an administrator at King High School who called pubescent boys into his office, ordered them to take off their shoes, ordered them to present him their naked feet, and proceeded to fondle their feet and crack their toes. Steve pointed out that the sheriff's report on both his and the administrative toe popper got the same assessment from the sheriff but that he had got over a year's suspension while the toe popper administrator had walked away free with the administrative attitude of "He's just a card and a jolly good fellow." The administration and board did not even order to toe popper to a psychiatric evaluation for the students' safety who came in contact with him.

Mr. Gonzales had wrongly asserted at a previous board meeting that only Steve's sheriff's report said that further action might be needed by the board. The SPT had reported the accurate information that both Steve and the Toe Popper had gotten the same comment from the sheriff. Then Mr. Gonzalez disputed with the reporter's accuracy. Mr. Gonzalez makes over $275,000 a year from tax monies. For that kind of excess in salary, the least he could do would be to master the documents that apply to school business and have enough public-relations sense not to dispute a reporter's accuracy, equivalent to waving a red flat before a bull because reporters are sensitive to any disparagement of their accuracy.

Belatedly discovering that he was wrong on this issue when he tardily examined the texts, Mr. Gonzalez hastened to dictate to Ms. Kipley, head of Professional Standards, a redaction of the Toe Cracker file to coincided with his wrong interpretation and disguised it. This feat demonstrates the board's and administration's and attorney's concept of integrity.

When Steve Kemp addressed the board, he did not say he was dissatisfied with the disposition of his case; but Attorney Gonzalez switched the subject from Steve's question about disparate treatment of him and the toe-cracker, who got nothing save a mild rebuke and an avalanche of jocular administrative comments about what a card he was. The lawyer delivered a horseback opinion with the sly and threatening suggestion that if Steve were dissatisfied with his settlement, he could reject it and go to a hearing.

This response evaded Steve's question and represented patent attempt to shut Steve up by covert threats because he had demonstrated not the abject acquiescence that the board and administration demand of teachers but the temerity to question the wisdom and fairness of a board-administrative decision. For the board and administration and their attorney, this defiance was revolutionary stuff, harbinger of when les citoyens refuse to eat cake but mount the barricades to fight.

My judgment says the attorney was trying to coerce Steve with the usual oblique threat of job loss if he didn't shut up. and not ever dare challenge the board again in a board meeting. Board meetings are on public TV and can let the cat out of the bag about how the board and administration mistreat teachers.

When I learned of the special-ed administrative child-abuse procedures via the Kemp case, I sent to Linda Kipley, Professional Standards chief, with copy to Mr. Valdez, head of personnel, and board members my own Professional Standards charges against the three special-ed administrators involved in the Kemp case.

La Kipley did not acknowledge their receipt. When I emailed the lady several months later to learn what had happened to my charges against the three administrators, I did not get an answer and had to repeat my question about the status of the investigation of my charges against Mr. Smiley, Ms. Sosa, and Ms. Morris.

I finally got a response from Ms. Kipley that displayed a mish mash sentence cobbled from the words of my emails to her in which she violated all the rules of scholarship as well as of courtesy to one of the citizens who pay her salary.

To a job that should have a Master's degree in criminal justice, psychology, or sociology, Ms. Kipley brings a home-ec degree. She is the Poster Child of the administration's and board's hiring of buddies, relatives, and sycophants, cheating the taxpayers of qualified jobs that pay sky-high salaries while many teachers must work second jobs to make ends meet. This ill-qualified woman considers such treatment of a citizen who helps pay her salary her right, and Ms. Elia does not rebuke this uncivilized behavior in an administrator. The conduct coincides with the fact that only teachers get Professional Standards charges; administrators don't no matter how badly they behave.

Copies of Professional Standards Charges Filed
Against Three administrators and ignored by Professional Standards supervisor Linda Kipley, the Personnel Director Mr. Valdez, the Superintendent and the Board:

To: Linda Kipley, Professional Standards
From: Lee Drury De Cesare, citizen

Professional Standards charge against Principal Morris of Special Ed

Please consider this a formal complaint against Principal Morris of the Special Ed division.

In the matter of the case of Steve Kemp, in which a filing by Mr. Smiley with the Sheriff's office alleged child-abuse by Mr. Steve Kemp, I protest its validity of the charge on the grounds that Ms. Morris along with Mr. Smiley and Ms Sosa bear responsibility in the situation for their not providing Mr. Kemp the instruction he needed before he entered the special-ed severely retarded classroom. The three's job descriptions detail those obligations that they

they either didn't know or ignored.

Ms. Morris's Job Description:

• Proactivity: Demonstrates readiness to initiate action and take responsibility for leading and enabling others to improve the circumstances being faced or anticipated;
• Organizational Sensitivity: Is aware of the effects of his/her behavior and decisions on all stakeholders both inside and outside the organization;
• Oversees and is responsible for school’s instructional program…and its results;
• Oversees and is responsible for the safety and discipline of the school’s students;
• Oversees and is responsible for the accuracy and timeliness of school’s records and reports.

Ms. Morris gave Steve Kemp no assistance that coincides with the obligations of her job. The only thing she said when she entered the room with Mr. Smiley and a physical therapist was that she “didn’t want to lose her job for child abuse.”

In fact, Principal Morris gave no instruction to Steve Kemp before she threw him into a classroom of severely retarded children with no debriefing. Steve had no education in or training to serve this student population. Ms. Morris gave Steve no advice or orientation to help him do the job right; she gave no information on state standards restraint rules. In these deficiencies, Ms. Morris shows derelict in her duties as a principal. Thus I file Professional Standards charges against her.

To: Linda Kipley, Professional Standards
From: Lee De Cesare, citizen
Date: 2/11/09

Please consider this a formal complaint of breach of professional standards by
Supervisor Smiley, Section 5, Special Ed Division. Mr. Smiley I believe gave false witness to the placement of the cord that forms basis for this charge against Steve Kemp. My comments act refutation of the charge of child abuse against teacher Steve Kemp filed with the Sheriff's Department and with the schools' Professional Standards office .Ms. Morris participated in and sanctioned the assignment of Steve Kemp to the substitute duty of teaching profoundly retarded children without ascertaining his training or giving him a debriefing on things he needed to know to function in a new teaching environment..

Mr. Kemp has no academic credentials in caring for profoundly retarded children. His special-ed education is in teaching children who have trouble reading to read better.

Mr. Smiley's Job Description:

• Help teachers develop a strategy for the instruction and assessment of the subject area curriculum so that every student develops to his maximum potential;
• Be responsible for assisting the administration in monitoring absences and arranging coverage of classes when no substitute is present;
• To insure dissemination of information and subject area supervisors to all members of the department and to insure understanding of all directives issued;
• To assist the Principal and Assistant Principal for Curriculum for evaluation of teachers within the department and, when necessary, work with teachers to improve instruction;
• To become a trained classroom observer eligible to serve on Preparing New Educator Teams.
• To work with teachers within the department to produce the highest standards of teaching (This includes visiting classrooms, making helpful suggestions for improving lesson plans, counseling with teachers within the department, and coordinating the work of the group to achieve departmental standards.

Although Mr. Smiley visited Mr. Kemp’s classroom, he spoke not a word to Mr. Kemp in accordance with the mandate in his job-description directives. Instead after the lapse of a week in which he, Principal Morris, and Administrator Sossa left Steve Kemp in the same classroom with the retarded students he was accused of abusing, Mr. Smiley went to the Sheriff’s Department and filed felony child-abuse charges against Mr. Kemp for his hooking the harness one student had in place when Kemp entered the room uneducated in restraint protocols to the bus restraint's back loops with a cord to the chair while he dealt with another child's trying to run away.

The sheriff’s office dismissed the felony charge that Mr. Smiley filed on the day he filed it, but the administration continued its baseless charge for over a year against Mr. Kemp when it is the supervisory people like Mr. Smiley who should have received citations for abuse of Professional Standards.

Please consider

Principal. Morris's Job Description:

• Proactivity: Demonstrates readiness to initiate action and take responsibility for leading and enabling others to improve the circumstances being faced or anticipated;
• Organizational Sensitivity: Is aware of the effects of his/her behavior and decisions on all stakeholders both inside and outside the organization;
• Oversees and is responsible for school’s instructional program…and its results;
• Oversees and is responsible for the safety and discipline of the school’s students;
• Oversees and is responsible for the accuracy and timeliness of school’s records and reports.

Ms. Morris gave Steve Kemp no assistance that coincides with the above duties of her job. The only thing she said when she entered the room with Mr. Smiley and a physical therapist was that she “didn’t want to lose her job for child abuse.” She gave no help to Steve Kemp before she threw him into a classroom of severely retarded children. Steve had no education in or training to serve this student population. Ms.Morris gave Steve no advice or orientation to help him do the job right... In this lack Ms. Morris was derelict in her duties as principal; thus I file Professional Standards charges against her.

To: Linda Kipley, Professional Standards
From: Lee De Cesare, citizen
Date: 2/11/09

Please consider this a formal complain of breech of professional standards by
Supervisor Sosa in the Special Ed division. This charge is a refutation of the charge of child abuse against teacher Steve Kemp.

Ms. Sosa was one of three the Special-ed administrative employees who assigned Steve to the substitute duty of teaching profoundly retarded children without ascertaining his training.

Mr. Kemp has no academic credentials in caring for profoundly retarded children. His education is in teaching children who have trouble reading to read.

• Ms. Sosa’s job description says that her duties include the following;

• Provide support for ESE teachers at assigned school;
• Assist teachers in monitoring the effectiveness of curriculum and materials used in the classroom;
• Assist teachers in the pre-referral process of intervention strategies, observations, and conferences;
• Provide in-service for general education teachers as needed;
• Provide program-specific orientation and training for newly hired teachers;
• Assist in developing intervention strategies in regard to behavior management and school discipline;
Provide support for parents and function as a liaison to the school, parents, and community agencies.

Supervisor Sosa was derelict in these duties when she and Principal Morris with Area Director Smiley's sanction threw Steve as a substitute teacher in a room the population of which was profoundly retarded children. Neither she nor Ms. Morris nor Mr. Smiley gave Mr. Kemp any orientation or comments on his caring for this unfamiliar client base, not a word. This is dereliction of Supervisor Sosas’s written duties. I therefore protest her behavior and ask that she be subject to a Professional Standards charge.

Liable for Professional Standards rebukes are other people aware of the situation who did nothing to protect the children. These are Mr. Valdez, head of personnel ; Ms. Kipley, head of Professional Standards; Ms. Elia, superintendent; and All Board members, to whom I had sent emails regarding this situation..

Those cited in the above paragraph knew what was going on or should have known, knew about the derelictions of the Special-ed supervisors charged with responsibility of insuring that the children had safe environments and competent attendants; knew about the disgraceful junk room that the severely retarded students inhabited. They sat on their hands did nothing.

I hope that the fact that this charge involves administrative personnel does not frighten or deter the Child-Abuse Department from treating this case like that of any other child-abuse complaint. I hope there is no bureaucratic and administrative collusion that excuses the consequences of high-level employees and even board members and the attorney in this case from submitting to investigation and receiving the State Child Abuse professionals' judgment of the situation. A lack of rigor and objectivity in response to this complaint will continue the injury of children in the Special-ed section of the Hillsborough County Schools, and defeat the mandate of the child protection agency to safeguard children's wellbeing.

I trust that the Child-Protection people will do their job in this case as in any other although my submission involves high-level members of the school system's hierarchy. Their practices of child abuse reflect an attitude of laizzez faire toward special-ed children's lax supervisors that is not acceptable in state employees charged with the safety and welfare of these vulnerable children.

Please let me know if I can provide further data or answer any questions.


Lee Drury De Cesare, citizen

15316 Gulf Boulevard 802

Madeira Beach, FL 33708

c: Governor Crist's Child Abuse Council

Eric Eikenberg, Chief of Staff of Governor Crist

All Members, Hillsborough County School Board

All Members Hillsborough County Children's Board

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Xerxes attacks Thermopoli again.

The Council of Trent convenes to decide if a person's using the word "turd" damns him or her to the fires of hell for eternity.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lee...I hate to admit this, but, I do read your blog weekly.

I guess that means my blog is your guilty pleasure. If a writer can draw in the unwilling, he or she is a power to be reckoned with.

If I read your implied assertion correctly, I would never
atack a board member in a personal manner.

I seldom imply anything. I just spit it out no matter how ugly it is. You are free to not attack board members in a personal manner, but that does not mean that I can't haul off and kick the bejesus out of the lot of them in any way that I see fit.

And would you use a spell checker for the love of literacy? Or are you too virtuous for that?

I will attack a board member at the drop of a hat. I will do so on whatever grounds occur to me. The people on the board are dumb, cowardly jerks who hurt education. They deserve all the kicks they get.

Unlike you, who has atacked all manner of board members and staff personally, that is not my M.O. While you have more verabal energy than anyone I'll ever know, I certainly have more professional integrity than you will ever enjoy.

It's "verbal," not "verable." What you say when you mention "verbal energy" is that I am a powerful writer. I know the words. I know syntax. I don't know how anybody who has read as much good stuff as I have in a long life could fail to be a good writer. But they can. Most people write badly oddly enough. Lousy writers fill colleges and universities. I used to write the tenure applications for Ph.D.s when I was still teaching because they couldn't write well enough.

Let's talk about "professional integrity," which you say you have more of than I have. You don't know the range of the word "integrity." "Integrity" means a thing is whole, all of a piece. I have heard doctors in an operating room when I scrubbed as their nurse say, "This patient's spleen has little integrity." I think you use the word in the sense of one's sticking to moral or ethical principles. I stick to mine. But mine are different than yours. And my ethical system is whole and complete. It has essential integrity.

We must first define what "moral" and "ethical" means to each of us. My moral and ethical principles are not Dave's. I believe attacking wrongdoing in people in office is a citizen's duty. I count that belief a moral principle. I think bringing to the attack all the weapons that I have mastered to be not only ethical but tactically necessary.

I believe that if I see wrongdoing, I should not simper and get the heebie-jeebies as grannies such as I are entitled to do. I believe I should instead summon my writing and talking talents and jump on the the world's horses' hindquarters in my purview, too many of whom have hunkered down in the purlieus of ROSSAC.

Utter turds fill that place. And don't shrink back in horror at the word "turd." It entered the English language in 1380 as an obscene expression for feces. It caught on bigtime. There is not a person in the English-speaking world who does not know what it means. And I, for one, am happy at its linguistic venerability. It is the perfect term for the likes of the bums who hang out at ROSSAC and bleed the taxpayers dry. They are all drags on education.

As for professional integrity, I am all of a piece in the two professional areas in which I have engaged. I am a registered nurse, and I never left a floor to go off duty before I made the rounds of the patients to see who was in pain so that I could give that suffering human being an analgesic before I went off duty. I was a college professor and never passed a student who did not deserve to pass. That's the kind of professional integrity I sponsor. I was also an airline stewardess in the early days when you had to have a nursing or bachelor's degree and good legs. There was no integrity to speak of involved. You couldn't wear glasses then; so your eyes had to have integrity.

You must learn to use the spell checker. If somebody invented the cure for AIDS and misspelled a word, people would not say, "Hurrah! This person has invented the cure for AIDS!" They would say, "Look at this jerk. He can't even spell "attacked," "attack," or "verbal."

Use the spell checker, Dave. That's an order.

I do not do anonymous!

This I admire. I think a person should stand by his or her words. I wouldn't think of not signing one of my most ascerbic communications to the board or the ROSSAC bums. They may hate me. But they have to respect me. I am a woman of my word.

Dave Schmidt

4:39 PM

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Let's Try This Tactic

From: lee de cesare []
Sent: Tuesday, December 15, 2009 8:33 PM
Cc: 'lee de cesare'
Subject: monkey biz

Senator Storms:

I have been rereading Thucydides and Herodotus about the Peloponnesian war. Sparta has always intrigued me. It had few citizens, never more than 7000, but it had a whole lot of helots--slaves who were the people of the towns that the Spartans had conquered. The Spartan oligarchy simply relocated these people to the farmlands that surrounded Sparta, whence these helots provided the economic basis for Sparta by growing all the food and doing all the dirty work of the society. The Spartan men by law could do nothing but be soldiers.

This situation reminds me of how the School Board and administration treat teachers in the Hillsborough County schools. The board and administration won't give the teachers a place on the board agenda to comment because they don't want to hear from them. They don't want to hear what the teachers think about Elia's imposing an extra class on them with no pay to balance her budget; they don't want to hear that it was unprofessional for Elia to make teachers practice grade inflation; they don't want to hear that Ms. Elia should not have bought a multi-million-dollar program that the teachers had to implement without consulting them. The board and administration want them to just be the field hands that provide the teaching of students, the product of which provides the ROSSAC dandies with state money that rolls into ROSSAC so that the board and administration can look like swells in the community, hire their buddies and kin in make-work jobs, and take trips at the taxpayers' expense to party nationwide. Susan Valdez spent $50,000 on travel for "board purposes" the first year she was on the board while the poor children of the county could not afford supplies to participate in class work.

I have observed the board by attending meetings for over two years and am appalled at the treatment both dish out to teachers. Recently a bullying bill HB 669 passed that says nobody in the schools either students or staff can be bullied; that the bullied person can report the situation to the schools' bullying apparatus and the bully will receive punishment.

The administration and board want only students covered by the bullying bill so they pretend teachers or staff is not covered by the bill. The board and administration don't want to give teachers a tool to protect themselves from the tricks the board and administration pull on them with the Professional Standards office. Under the tutelage of the superintendent and board the Professional Standards Office either blows up a trifle to charge teachers with unprofessional activity and threaten their jobs or makes up a charge whole cloth for the same purpose. That the teachers can be framed and punished for trifles or nothing at all by the board and administration keeps the teachers quiet for fear of losing their jobs. The bullying bill would put into the teachers' hands a weapon against such bullying.

The school attorney, Tom Gonzalez, was prompted by Board Member Candy Olson--yes, the same one whose husband just announced his being gay, divorcing her, and her having to sell her house in South Tampa to move into a condominium--to rule that the HB 669 bullying law did not include staff. He complied. and why not? He makes $275,000 in tax money a year for his rulings that cover anything the administration and board does that is marginally legal or even illegal.

This "ruling" has emboldened the board and administration to omit staff bullying as the bill requires because to do so would allow bullied teachers to have a way to challenge their ill treatment. This isn't finished. I am working now on the scanner: my last project. I got the printer to work at last. lee

Checking in with the team

I have been looking for a little camera I lost in the jungle of my desk. I didn't find it yet, but look what I found below.

This will remind you of what the DNA of the ROSSAC people is. For being a whistle blower pointing out waste and theft, the board and adminstration did not congratulate Doug Erwin; Dr. Lennard and his ROSSAC gutter ghouls targeted him to be made to look crazy by a hired investigator, who had the nerve to tell the truth.lee

I am struggling still to get my printer to work and the Microsoft Word mail program on my desktop up and running.

I am going to call HP today and see if those nice techs in the Orient can walk me through making it work. I caught my rascally grandson Isaiah home yesterday on the phone and told him if he didn't help me make the people's faces on my desktop stop being green I was going to cut him out of my will. He laughed. Look at my picture. Am I green on your computer? I don't want to look green in Florence. The Italians will say that we are not only ugly Americans but that we are green as well. Lee

Printed by: Diane Woodall Title: Fwd: investigation

Created by <span class=DPE, Copyright IRIS 2005" v:shapes="_x0000_i1025" width="587" height="142">

Wednesday, January 23, 2002 9:59: 11 AM Page 1 of 1

1::.'''-"=" ~I Wednesday, January 23, 20028:50:46 AM

-_. Message

From: ~ Douglas Erwin

ru Elsa Tuggle

Subject: I Fwd: investigation To: I ~ Diane Woodall


Good morning!

In November, 2000, John Brungard and I met with Bill Gietzen at John's house. At that meeting, he gave us an overview of what his role in the investigation was and asked us to share what we knew. During the discussion, we indicated that we felt that you were being targeted and held responsible for what Mac was doing. He indicated that we were right to be cautious, as he was hired to try and make you look guilty of wrongdoing. His conversation with us made it very clear that while he was looking for facts and was following up leads, there was also another agenda.

It is interesting to note that after the report was released, I went to Mark Hart's office on December 11, 2001 and looked through all the material that was gathered from the investigations. I came upon a statement from Wayne Dashinger's report that stated that Gietzen indicated he was hired to make Doug Erwin look crazy.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Call for Help

I have spent an hour with a lovely competer technician lad who fixed my routing problems and didn't charge me for it. I told him I had been a teacher, and he told me how he dropped out of college and didn't finish his degree and that he regrets not doing so.

I think that he fixed my router for free because I was a teacher. Everybody loves teachers except the ROSSAC fiends,

The next board meeting is January 12. I will drive from the beach to attend.

When I asked the Attorney General to issue a ruling on ROSSAC 's not following the HB 669 bullying law's requirement that adults, he responded that one of the elected offials had to ask for that ruling.

So I want you to help me to pressure the board to ask for a ruling from the Attorney General in which he gives an opinion of whether the bullying law covers adult staff as well as students.

I need some help on this project. My blog readers need to pitch in, lee