When the grade-changing scandal broke, the district told us this was a case of "suppressing curriculum.” Which leads me to ask: From what cob-webbed cubbyhole did they pluck that doublespeak?
We were first told that a substitute teacher was the culprit, leading us to consider it just another case of some poor temp messing up. Only later do we learn that this was hardly a run-of-the-mill sub, but rather a highly respected educator who had taught in the district for 31 years. Then, we discover that at least one member of the governing board majority, Kristel Foster, repeatedly referred to the messenger—highly-respected reporter Valerie Cavazos of KGUN9 News— as intentionally "going after" the district. At the last Board meeting, Foster even “apologized” to representatives of Palo Verde High School for the reporter’s probing questions on yet another scandal. That was after the Superintendent had publically called out the validity of reporting on an event that happened some time ago. And that was the totality of the response from the Superintendent H.T. Sanchez and his lockstep board majority.
Finally, board member Michael Hicks (in the minority) called for a well-deserved investigation. We thank him for that insistence.
And so, once again, the district’s response to malfeasance is to haul out the smoke and mirrors, massage the message, fuzzy the facts, and hope the whole shebang blows over. Those who attended the last governing board meeting saw a presentation on how wonderfully things are going at Palo Verde High School; the next meeting will focus on Booth-Fickett, K-8 Math and Science Magnet School, where a brave administrator blew the whistle—and was promptly sacked. We’re obviously seeing a concerted attempt to squash the true message from these scandals: That this district is horribly mismanaged, dishonest, and actively undermines the good work of the schools with its policy manipulations.
Meanwhile, the leadership dodges blame, and the fog machine purrs on.
Enough is enough.