Mr. Bartels, District 4 challenger of Jennifer Falliero: I just read the comments on your Facebook page and read also Mr. Marshall's report that the union had endorsed you.
I am glad the union did not endorse Ms. Falliero: she is morally incompetent to be in charge of children's wellbeing. I don't know about Mr. Stacy. He's a druggist, I understand; but he did not have the political sense to answer my call to his campaign. If Mr. Stacy won't respond to voters during the election, he is not likely to contact them after being elected.
There is enough of that ilk of public officials on the board right now.
I would like to know 1. your stand on using technology to thwart the administration's buddy-and- sycophant hiring protocols by the Board's posting on the Web the jobs open, the people applying, and hyperlinks to their resumes. Then voters could detect favoritism in hiring.
Favortism and using the hiring process as a jobs program means that right now there is only one Ph.D. in the administration. Voters are not getting their money's worth with such shoddy hiring practices by the administration sactioned by the board.
The important head of Professional Standards sports a home-ec diploma; her husband got hired with a high school diploma and no experience in a job that required an accounting degree and experience; he got the nod in preference to four candidates with the requisite degree and experience. My analysis says this was a bonus for Ms. Kipley's doing the dirty work for the board and administration in the Professional Standards office as a threat to teachers' jobs if they speak out about what they think is wrong with the administration and board's managing the schools.
Yet the board stamps on everything not nailed down "We are an equal-employment-opportunity employer."
The CONSENT AGENDA is institutionalized government out of the sunshine. Would you 2. sponsor its being listed on the Board's Web page with invitations from voters to board members to explain questionable aspects of the agenda, a task board members can perform on board nights?
And I would like to know 4. your stance on the use of Professional Standards as a tool to keep teachers quiet and in fear of their jobs by the administration's filing charges against them based on teachers' having said anything about the need of the school administration and board to pay attention to problems that they see in the system or that the intrepid blog about. The board and administration want all data about the schools to come through the Public Affairs Laundromat.
Teachers who don't obey this unspoken rule get charges cooked up and filed against them in retaliation. Two such cases of which I am aware are Media Specialist Bart Birdsall and Teacher Steve Kemp.
My public-information request got a stack of charges against teachers but no charges against administrators for violations against Professional Standards. That statistic cries out for review by the board, which currently pretends it does not know what's going on in this vile practice. Its unfair double-standard application appears in high relief in the cases of teacher Steve Kemp and the King High administration Toe Cracker. Mr. Kemp's lawyer prevented Ms. Elia from her initial plan to fire him for a cooked-up charge by Special-ed administrator Smiley. She kept Kemp on suspension for a year. The administrative attitude toward the King High's administrator foot-fetishist Toe Cracker's acting out his condition on pubescent boys got the equivalent of "Oh, isn't he a card?" from the administration.
Would you 5. recommend appointing a committee of citizens, teachers, and administrators to review the practices of the Professional Standards office? Would you commit yourself to this during the campaign?
Have you reviewed Ms. Falliero's sustained opposition to the First Amendment? Comments on her fight to shut it down on the school board appear in my blog: leedrurydecesarescasting-roomcouch.blogspot.com.
Can you tell the voters your stand on the First Amendment as it applies to board conduct of business and as it applies to teachers' right to speak out without retaliation for their criticism of the schools?
I served as union president at HCC, where I taught for 28 years before retiring. My view of the CTA is that it is too narrow and too timid and too unimaginative to press candidates on issues like those I cite above and too complacent to challenge the administration on them. I think what's needed is the certification of a vigorous new union like the Teamsters that will go to bat for teacher members and not play pattycake with the administration as the CTA did under past leadership and seems likely to continue a similarly flaccid performance under Mr. Whitman's tutelage.
I note that Ybor City does not appear in the District 2 online map. Despite my poor grasp of geography, I believe District 2 is Ybor's place on the map. Since Tampa has a long history of discrimination against Hispanics, I am suspicious that this omission is an instance of that ugly phenomenon.
Ms. Olson, that district's board member, has apparently done nothing to inquire about why Ybor City's name on the map does not appear analogously with Gibsonton, etc. Can you find out the motive of this omission and let the voters know why the District 2 map omits Ybor City's name?
I will post your responses to the above questions on my blog. I will also post your not answering them.
Nonresponsiveness is a trait if not a policy of the present board. For instance, I asked board members Susan Valdes and Jennifer Falliero to enter a motion to give students and teachers a settled, recurring place on the board agenda to bring up matters from the schools that they wanted to board to know about. HCC administration, no friend of teachers and students, put teachers and students in the Number One slot on the board agenda. I asked also that the board supply protection from administrator retaliation for students' and teachers' doing so.
Even though I had supported both candidates Griffin and Valdes and gave considerable monies to both, they did not even bother to answer my emails. That's a telling datum of board lack of responsiveness once elected.
What will be 6. your policy on answering emails from citizens?
Lee Drury De Cesare
15316 Gulf Boulevard 802
Madeira Beach, FL 33708