Saturday, February 25, 2012

Still nothing from Brooks on student discipline

It has been more than three months now, since I asked APS Supt Winston Brooks why we never talk about student discipline, link.

So far, not a word.

Two possibilities; the first, student discipline, like the color their lockers are painted, has no effect on learning. It is of so little consequence that it doesn't warrant gathering data, examining it, and making plans to address the issues we find.

The other possibility; student discipline doesn't look good, so in the interests of positive public perception, it simply isn't brought up.

There is no data to examine. By their own deliberate choice, the leadership of the APS does not gather data that looks bad; that will stain their precious public perception.

Less than five years ago, a document was created by Council of the Great City Schools investigators; "Evaluation of District Security Operations". It holds the findings an investigation into APS' police force; a publicly funded private police force; a praetorian guard.

They wrote;

"The annual statistical crime report to the Board of Education (and the community) may be inaccurate and possibly misleading. "... there is a prevailing culture of under-reporting incidents in order to improve the image of the district and the individual schools."
"... a prevailing culture ..."

CoGCS auditors, in another administrative audit, found "... a culture of fear of retribution and retaliation" against whistleblowers.

"... a culture of fear ..."

I doubt CoGCS auditors used a word as powerful as "culture" casually. It seems unlikely in a report where the word "may" is used to describe the possibility that a culture of under-reporting manifests itself in inaccuracy and deception.

Cultures of anything don't disappear overnight.

They don't disappear over five years.

There is still a culture of under reporting in the APS; witness their unwillingness to produce data on student discipline.

There is still a culture of fear of retaliation against whistleblowers.

All anyone has to do to prove that, is ask.

Which gets us to the Journal, and why won't they ask a few APS employees if they are witness to any administrative corruption and incompetence, and if they feel comfortable exposing it?

This is Journal Managing Editor Kent Walz. He is seen here defending his nomination of Winston Brooks for a NM FOG Dixon Award.

Walz, and school board enforcer Marty Esquivel, bamboozled the NM FOG board into giving Brooks a Dixon Award as a hero of transparency while at the very same time, Brooks and Esquivel were, and are, suppressing public records of felony criminal misconduct involving APS senior administrators, link; the Caswell Report, and every other public record of any investigation of public corruption and incompetence in the leadership of the APS police force.

I have no idea whose fist pounds the table last at the Journal. But, as managing editor, one could reasonably suppose that Walz could instigate an investigation and report upon the suppression of evidence of felony criminal misconduct, by the APS police force, until statutes of limitation expired, and the collateral and ongoing cover up.

But Walz won't.

And neither will he have anyone investigate and report upon student discipline in the APS, the lack of record keeping, the deliberate falsification of records, and the culture of fear of retaliation on any whistleblower who tries to do anything about it.

And that's why Winston Brooks doesn't have to talk about student discipline.

Or about the lack of character and courage that keeps him from holding himself honestly accountable as a role model of the student standards of conduct; the Pillars of Character Counts!.

photo and frame grab Mark Bralley

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