Hey, it’s not Friday….

But it’s still “Talking Points with the Founding Fathers!”

Patriots, remind me, didn’t we  just elect Linda Smith, Jon Bonardi and Mark Akinosho to the school board last year because we, the citizens, believed they could bring our Superintendent back in line and straighten out the mess created by this board over the past few years?  Well,  I guess we’re witnessing just another example of how politics can distort the choice between right and wrong, even to the point of corrupting one’s value system.

The Herald noted the Lee County Board of Education’s proposed budget, just passed this week, raises local taxpayers’ burden by $4.1M and accomplishes the following:

The budget keeps current full-time employees and 40 percent of tutors, and includes some funding for pre-K programs. The budget cuts some services to at-risk students, 60 percent of the tutors, some part-time employees, some supplies and materials, all staff development and two central office positions. It also institutes a 1-mile walk zone for middle schools and a 1.5-mile walk zone for high schools to save on transportation costs. Elementary schools would not have a walk zone.

We have watched the deliberate demise of our buildings (yes, Lee Senior could have been kept up with proper maintenance procedures), followed by scare tactics from the board so they can get the money they want, regardless of the cost to taxpayers, and now sneaky “contract extensions” for up to four years on selected administrative personnel.

Will somebody explain to me why the Central Office budget in 2002 was $15,000 and now it is reported to be a whopping $1.5 MILLION in 2010!  But wait, Dr. Moss wants more!  Hello, anybody out there listening?

What’s next?  Are we now going to extend Dr’s Moss and Bryan’s contracts again?  My goodness, we only have those two under contract through 2014!

What more does Boss Hawg Bill Tatum have in store for us?  Let me guess: he’ll call in the mad blogger (KFC) to help him bully the BOE, BOC and the general public even more.

Want to hear about another outrage?   This bunch of arrogant individuals on the BOE believes YOU do not know what is good for your child.  They are contemplating a resolution to oppose House Bill 344 that would allow families of children with special needs to receive a small voucher they could use to seek the best education for their child outside of the public school system if the parents so desired.   This resolution, when adopted by our BOE, will show them to be completely uncaring about our most vulnerable children in the community and unconcerned about the financial struggles poor families might be facing to get the best education for their kids.  Read more: Sanford Herald – Schools budget plan goes before county

Let’s discuss some more of this school business.  While Moss is saying teachers, poor teachers, will lose their jobs, he’s in line for some serious bonuses.  When enrollment increases by another 328 pupils, Moss will get an automatic pay increase of over $7000.  With his housing allowance, travel, base salary, insurance and nice bonus of $40,000 his total compensation already is close to $194k!  OMG.  No wonder it doesn’t bother him to toss out a few assistants or teachers and cry the blues all the while laughing on his way to the bank.

When will these outrages end?  What do we have to do to get Dr. Moss and the BOE under control?  Inquiring minds want to know.

Patrick Henry
“Give me liberty, not liability!”

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About Patrick Henry

"Give me liberty, or give me death!"
This entry was posted in Budget, Education, Lee County Politics, Taxes & Fees. Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Hey, it’s not Friday….

  1. Randall Lee Yow says:

    Just two quick things “Mr Henry”.

    -First, during the time Lee Senior was allowed to run down, great conservative stalwarts like Herb Hinks and Chad Adams were on the county commission. They did nothing but drag their feet on building another school, and they did not allocate any extra funds to cover the cost of increased upkeep on the schools based on the over crowding.

    -Second, North Carolina house bill 344 is not a voucher program. It is a tax credit. Meaning a family has to put the money up front to cover the cost of tuition, then they are paid back. A voucher would cover the cost up front and not require any money from the family (unless over the alloted amount). A voucher program would be much fairer to poor, working class, and middle class families. As it is this bill favors the wealthier members of our society who can put the money up first and wait to be paid back. If you will a interest free loan to the state. Google the bill and you can find it in PDF and you will see that I am right (also I do not understand why the bill covers “children” up to the age of 22?).

    -Randall Lee Yow

    • Mr. Yow is correct.

      Patrick and I both both dream of the day we can make school choice a simple voucher system. Alas, the best we could get this year is a tax credit; but at least it is a move in the right direction.

      I know at least ten taxpaying families in Lee County who are enslaved to the public school system with their children languishing in a one-size-fits-all special education classroom. These parents — several of whom work 2-3 jobs to provide for their families — cannot afford to obtain a private education for their special needs children, and they certainly aren’t happy with what they are getting in the public schools. But they cannot compel the Lee County schools to conform to the IEP’s for their children, and they presently cannot afford to seek an alternative education.

      While not as ideal as a voucher system, this tax credit will at least give them some alternatives.

      In response to your age limit question, that’s an easy answer. Many of these handicapped and learning disabled children require a protracted period of education to achieve K-12 educational standards. It is quite common for them to be graduating from private high schools or learning centers at the age of 20-22 years. What the public schools are doing now for them is NOT education; rather, it is a system of social promotion. If the child fails to learn, then he/she still passes from grade to grade each year. Many of them are “socially promoted” out of high school without achieving state standards. They do not get a diploma, they get a certificate of completion. It is a travesty.

      Publius

    • Patrick Henry says:

      Mr. Yow,

      I find your name callouts of Chad Adams and Herb Hincks annoying. The reason is that many commissioners have come and gone that could have fixed it. Richard Hayes has been around forever it seems and I have yet to hear him offer a maintenance solution. All he did was offer blank checks when requested.

      Why didn’t Jamie Kelly offer a plan while he blackmailed the citizens with the “you’ll vote for a sales tax or property tax increase”? We see where he is now. Just like Hayes, Kelly didn’t care either what ramifications would occur in the future based on his actions.

      Besides, there have been multiple opportunities to make sure the buildings would be maintained and no one has done anything! Seems to me the BOE would be screaming to make sure there was one! Blame them all.

      So if you want to paint only conservatives as the problem, stop wasting your time.

      As for the opposition to the bill, it is a travesty that those who swear that everything they do is for the children, are the very ones who deny or want to deny equal rights to a quality (that’s the key word) education to those who believe the public school system has failed them.

      PH

      • Norman Thomas says:

        If by “forever,” you mean Richard Hayes has been around since 2008, then you would be correct. You probably don’t mean that, though.

  2. Patrick, one of your better posts but of course I must comment.
    I can’t say what the other patriots believed, but I didn’t expect the three you named to do much to “bring our Superintendent back in line and straighten out the mess created by this board” because they were only 3 on a 7 member BOE and I think Bonardi was a retread , having severed time before on the BOE . I was disappointed when they were elected and I have seen nothing of their actions to make me change my mind, perhaps you should form a citizen’s panel to assist them.
    That is a very good question about the central office budget, since $15,000 wouldn’t cover their paper products cost even in 2002 I suspect the real costs were hidden in other lines of the budget. What do you think? Yes I expect some contracts will be extended before the next BOE election. Or do you expect those people to gamble on the results of the election, they might not get such an easy BOE next time.
    Special needs children? Is that school code for slow, or physically handicapped, or both?
    “While Moss is saying teachers, poor teachers” does poor refer to their performance, or their pay? We seem to have plenty of the former and darn few of the latter.
    As for what inquiring minds want to know, I am afraid the only answer is elect better people or form a citizen’s panel to study the board’s actions, the stars from the panel should run in the next election.
    Cato

  3. Patrick Henry says:

    Actually it would have been better said to say they were elected to join a few of the others, like Cameron Sharpe, to bring common sense and responsibility back to the BOE. We now know that isn’t going to happen.

    The fiasco with the paring knife incident and rush to “blame” without true evidence really was enough to see what and who we are dealing with. Either complete idiots or the most ruthless, arrogant individuals in this county. Standing together instead of speaking out against how Ashley and her family were treated makes me ashamed to call any of them leaders. So I won’t.

    Every one on the BOE, including Sharpe, has compromised their values and moral capacity. That is why I do believe they will extend contracts just to spite the opposition.

    PH

    • Am I mistaken again or is the BOE elected on a non-partisan county wide basis, top vote getters claim offices, candidates can form teams with like minded members but no Party backing is allowed. Do they all get elected at the same election or are there staggered terms?
      Actually as I view the paring knife incident, the girl was doomed as far as the schools go right from the start. It is very evident at least to me that the BOE does not MAKE policy, they BUY policies from the NCSBA! An example of a crude purchased policy disclaimer:” This sample policy is provided by the N.C. School Boards Association as a subscriber benefit and is not intended to be legal advice. Policies should be modified to address your specific needs and should be reviewed by your board attorney prior to adoption. © 2009 NCSBA” Note who holds the copyright. So the idiots and/or ruthless arrogant individuals were not limited to Lee County but were the employees of the NCSBA.
      Evidence, the knife was all that was needed and if Ashley had tried to prevent a questionable search and seizure, that infraction of policy would bring the same result and also if she had claimed the right to avoid self- incrimation that would have tripped another policy trap. The Construction does not apply on school grounds, at least not for students! Leaders? No! blind policy followers
      Cato

  4. Sojourner Truth says:

    Has it occurred to you that perhaps teachers could be empowered instead of blamed? Do you honestly think they aren’t being bullied by Moss & BOE? You have seen how they act toward the public, and they have much more power over teachers. You can be outraged all you like, but there are plenty of school employees who can’t express their outrage unless they don’t want a job.

    When was the last time you were in a school and saw what they have to deal with? How about proctoring some EOG’s and EOC’s? If you want to advocate for education, get in there and see what’s going on.

    Also, what qualifies you to pass judgment about how IEP’s are handled? Unless you personally have a child with an IEP, you are going on hearsay. Unless you have worked in the schools, you don’t have the full picture.

    • Sojourner Truth- Thanks for your post.

      You’re right. It would not have been appropriate for me to cite problems with social promotion in our public schools without first-hand knowledge about how the system works, without having personally experienced the anguish of parenting a child stigmatized by the NC public school “special ed” system, and without having personally suffered through years of fighting with school officials (all the way to DPI in Raleigh) only to be told what I had documented in my child’s IEP doesn’t matter; that they only had to conform with what the teacher put in the IEP. Oh wait, I have that experience!

      Moreover, as a former full-time teacher, I believe I have some relevant insight into what constitutes good education- in particular, the “sound basic education” that the NC Constitution requires!. While some public school children in NC are blessed to receive a reasonably sound basic education in a special education classroom, many do not. The parents of those children ought to have an alternative for educating their children, so their children can avoid a life of social promotion followed by dependency on their family and government for survival.

      Publius

  5. Patrick Henry says:

    Sojourner,

    Put your money where your mouth is. We are FOR the teachers and have explicitly stated so on this blog.

    Frankly, it is a shame that an open door policy doesn’t exists. yea, yea, it’s probably in the handbook but it isn’t enforced or should I say respected.

    BTW you have no idea if I have or have not worked in the public school system. Don’t assume.

    PH

    • Sojourner Truth says:

      You assume plenty, so why should anyone else not assume?

      If you say you are for teachers, you should go back and reread some of your comments.

      • Nailed him. But I don’t claim to support Teachers, in my limited experience, most are undereducated themselves even in the subjects they teach. Too much of the instruction they receive is in the theory of teaching to allow them to master the subjects that they end up teaching.

  6. Randall Lee Yow says:

    “Mr Henry”,

    When I call people out by name because I do not like their policy choices, that is my right as an American. Also, I didn’t just blame conservatives. I just pointed out that I felt they put off building another school and did not fund the up keep properly. I attended Lee Senior from 1995-1999, the school went down hill during that period. Not the teachers or the quality education I received, just the buildings. It is hard to learn when the Foreign Language building’s heat never worked or when the walkways flooded during a rain storm. I got through it however, and during this time Herb Hincks was chairman of the county commission. I believe even he came to the conclusion we had to do something finally, that is why he supported the sales tax for school construction.

    • Is there a Lee County rule that says you can’t wear proper footwear to school?It seems every time Lee Senior comes up people are talking about the flooded walkways. We had things we called boots and they were pretty much daily footwear from the end of October until early May. College walkways often had 6-8 inches of snow in the morning in season (I am from NY)
      I think most of the officials were interested in the additional revenue stream of the sales tax that didn’t pass the first time so they tied it in with Lee Senior’s repair needs knowing that once they got some lipstick on the old pig they could spend it anyway they wanted to.

  7. Randall Lee Yow says:

    “Mr Henry”,

    When I call people out by name because I do not like their policy choices, that is my right as an American. I didn’t just blame conservatives. I just pointed out that I felt they put off building another school and did not fund the up keep properly. I attended Lee Senior from 1995-1999, the school went down hill during that period. Not the teachers or the quality education I received, just the buildings. It is hard to learn when the Foreign Language building’s heat never worked or when the walkways flooded during a rain storm. I got through it however, and during this time Herb Hincks was chairman of the county commission. I believe even he came to the conclusion we had to do something finally, that is why he supported the sales tax for school construction.

    Also, I find your “annoyance” very amusing. When I take umbrage with someone and/or their policies, I do it as Randall Yow. You called out the school board, Mr Moss, Keith Clark, and pretty much everyone who has served on the county commission. Of course you use the name of a man who has been dead since 1799. This is your game however, so you can make up any rules that you want, but your liberty comes with the liability of a insincere identity.

    -Randall Lee Yow

    • Come now, Mr. Yow. Surely you aren’t suggesting that you haven’t ever blogged under a surname or two…even in the past month.

      It is an abiding principle of this blog not to author a blog entry under one’s actual identity. Call it a game if you like. But still, it is our schtick and it’s one of the things that make this blog unique in Lee County. Remember– it’s about the message not the messenger.

      We welcome your comments as Randall Lee Yow, or as one of the several identities you’ve used here, on that parallel (socialist) website a few of you maintained last fall, or on the Herald website. Any old name will do.

      Publius

    • Patrick Henry says:

      Mr. Yow,

      I owe my liberty to the actual Founding Fathers that sacrificed their fortunes, lives, and sacred honor for this country. They also gave me the First Amendment. If I choose to write on this blog under Patrick Henry, it is because I am free to do so according to that beautiful document, US Constitution. And you are too. Isn’t America great?

      But ultimately, I owe it to God. Because it is our Creator that gave us unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Not government.

      PH

  8. Patrick Henry says:

    Ha….Mr. Yow. LCSH was in going downhill before your tenure there.

    But it still remains that no one is or has been pushing a maintenance program. So when the massive overhaul is complete, we will be back in the same boat.

    Do you think some of the cha-change in the tune of $1.5 mill spent at Central office Should be shifted to mor dire needs, such as maintenance or a few teacher assistants?

    This in the real world is called preventative maintenance. In the real world, businesses don’t have a feeding trough called “taxpayers” to steal from.

    PH

  9. Randall Lee Yow says:

    “Mr James Madison”,

    You have my word as a gentlemen sir, that I have never posted on the Founding Fathers Blog, Fresh Brewed Conservatism, or the E-Lee Dispatch using any other name than my proper Christian name. There were a few times I signed posts as “RLY”, which are my initials. I stopped doing that however because certain people thought that it stood for Riley, as in Jay Riley. I did not want people to confuse the two of us (people all ready say that we look like brothers). You must be getting me confused with some other intellectual sparing partner. Surely, Shelia Barber (If she reads this website) could identify my unique style of prose. These “others” simply do not posses my audacious panache!!!

    -Randall Lee Yow

  10. Jay Riley says:

    Thank you for not doing that anymore, Mr. Yow. The confusion kept me up many sleepless nights.

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