Saturday, February 27, 2010

Brooks "loses it", following meeting with NMPED

Note; I was not present at the actual meeting, nor was anyone else from the press. We missed the meeting and the post meeting dust up between APS Supt Winston Brooks and couple of charter school representatives, because we were told the meeting was to begin at 3:30. The PIOs from the NMPED chose not to tell the media about the "working meeting" that began at 2:30 and was long done before the media arrived. APS Supt Winston Brooks can thank his lucky star for that one, no video recordings were made of his appalling post meeting behavior.

As Supt Winston Brooks drove away from the meeting with charter schools and the Secretary of the New Mexico Public Education Department, he was probably regretting the loss of control he exhibited as he left the meeting. If he was not, he should have been; his conduct, at the very least, was highly unprofessional and cast him and his administration in a very bad light.

I was not able to get anyone to go on the record regarding his name calling, or the language he used as he left the meeting; everyone wants to be a "gentleman" apparently and not point to his failure to keep his emotions in check after having his power play over the charters, nipped in the bud.

He is reported to have called Amy Biehl Administrator, Michael May, a "liar" before "bumping" into him as he left the room. May declined to call the "bump" an assault, offering that "the room was crowded" and that Brooks might have run into him accidentally. There was also an inappropriate exchange between Brooks and Southwest Learning Center's Executive Director Scott Glasrud as Brooks left the room

Months ago, the APS sent an email to Glasrud, asking for budget reporting in excess of the agreement between the charter and APS, the school's "authorizer". According to Glasrud, he responded by writing to APS, that, while he had no problem with additional reports, the arrangement, since it amounted to rewriting that part of their contract, needed to be negotiated board to board, rather than by someone in APS' administrative staff.

Months later, Glasrud found out that Brooks was threatening to revoke the school's charter if the reports were not immediately submitted. He found out from reporters who were following up on an APS School Board Meeting where the decision (which APS School Board President Marty Esquivel later admitted had been impetuous) had been made.

For reasons yet to be explained, Brooks decided to start a pissing contest, wikilink, with four of the best schools in the district, schools that routinely outperform their APS counterparts. The relationship between APS and its charters, has been one characterized by disrespect, to say the least.

Glasrud, in a op-ed piece in the Journal, characterized the move as a power play.

The Secretary of the New Mexico Public Education Department Veronica Garcia, apparently reminded Brooks and APS that, while as authorizers they have certain powers and responsibilities, they also have an obligation to conduct themselves professionally by establishing open communications over issues, as opposed to running to the media with threats of charter revocations.

Brooks did not take the chastisement well.

It is a recurring theme. link.

The Journal of course, presents an entirely different picture of the meeting, link, going so far as to paint Brooks as the "winner" of the "power struggle". No mention is made at all, of his reprehensible behavior as he left the meeting.

It must be nice, having the "newspaper of record" in your pocket.


Anonymous said...

"History repeats itself". It would be interesting if an Albuquerque journalist went back to where Winston came from, back track his life. Then they will find a trail of this impetuous anger in his past.
I myself also know of incidents where winston Brooks started screaming like a madman at some APS maintenance workers that were laying sod about 1.5 years ago. Like a rube, in front of adults he was holding a meeting with, he was screaming at them, from a classroom to a field.
The men were laying sod wrong. He could have walked out there, or sent someone. Instead he did a redneck holler from the building to the field.

Anonymous said...

This reminds me of when Brooks was selected as Supe. He said something like "Let's have hugs...but ladies only".
Then this week a guy touches his shoulder and he says something like "get your f^***g hands off me!".
Does anybody else thinks this guy has some issues with males "touching" him??

Jerry said...

... and what's up with the audit 'thing'? While each of the issues raised in the charter school audit must be addressed - which is appropriate ... what about the lack of visibility of the APS audits, or the single finding that dealt with a $40 million APS issue, or the $16 million that APS 'found' - where is the transparency on those? Just how 'thick' is the APS board - and does it need new leadership - or composition?

ched macquigg said...

The board is not thick; they are complicit. They know what they are hiding and do so deliberately -imho

Anonymous said...

Brooks had this anger management problem back in Kansas with their legislators. The board still selected him.
Fire the board next election cycle.

Anonymous said...

Like the spoiled child he seems to be, Winston got mad cause someone else outshined him, and he didn't get his way, even under the coat tails of "Mama" Veronica Garcia.
Can someone please make it a law that APS supe candidates have a full mental evaluation by a psychiatrist before getting the title?????

Anonymous said...

I was at the meeting on Friday, and yes, what you have indicated is true. Brooks came across looking like a 6th grader who was mad about not being allowed into the Valentine's Day Dance. What kills me about this whole thing is that the APS board has got to have the shortest memory of any elected body ever. From Brad Allison to this guy, Brooks, you'd think that they might do their homework one of these days and investigate where these folks came from and how they worked out there. For Brooks to have some kind of a history of immaturity and hot-headedness and the board not know about it (or maybe they did and hired him anyway) seems irresponsible!

But what is saddest is that the board seems to have approved of how Brooks handled this situation. Bully folks until you get your way! Now there is some leadership! I hate to say it, but they (APS board and constituents) get what they deserve.