Thursday, April 10, 2014

Did APS' "phase out" Character Counts!, or just hide it?

The only reason, in one very real sense, that there ever was Character Counts! in the APS, was because US Senator Pete Domenici.

Not only was he a Founding Father and vocal advocate of Character Counts!, but he brought a whole bunch of federal grant money with him.  The leadership of the APS spent ever dime in an effort to appear to be offering character education for students.  Character education in general and Character Counts! in particular.

The Pillars of Character Counts!, link, represent a nationally recognized, accepted and respected code of ethical conduct.  They aren't the only standard, they may not even be the best.  They're the best that I am aware of, and they have been officially the APS student standards of conduct since 1994.

Because the board has not rescinded or modified the resolution that made the Pillars the student standards, and because every year in the APS Student Behavior Handbook they remind students that they are expected to model and promote (honest accountability to) the Pillars of Character Counts!; Respect, Responsibility, Fairness, Caring, Citizenship, and Trustworthiness.

The Pillar of Trustworthiness requires candid, forthright and honest responses to legitimate questions.  The leadership of the APS would have none of that so they struck the role modeling clause from their own standards of conduct.

They think that because they struck the language which used to read;

in no case shall the standards of conduct for adults
be lower than the standards of conduct for students
from their standards of conduct, they can no longer be held actually, honestly accountable as role models of higher standards of conduct than the law.  Standards which often require of people of character;
more than the law requires and 
less than the law allows.
"Phased out" means to discontinue the practice, production, or use of by phases, to stop production or operation by phase.

There was no "phasing out" of honest accountability to higher standards of conduct than the law; they dropped it like a hot potato when the grant money ran out, and when I tried to hold them accountable as role models in state court.

They packed up the evidence and hid it in closets.

Where is the Character Counts! quilt that used to hang outside of APS Supt Winston Brooks' office?

In his deposition, his testimony indicated he is clueless about Character Counts!; the standards of conduct of which he is the senior-most administrative role model in the entire APS.

Is there still a Character Counts! quilt behind the board in the Martin-DeLayo community room?

You can see it behind the board in the accompanying photograph of Audit Committee Chair David Robbins announcing that the board had a conduct a discussion and made a decision illegally; the decision to eject us from the meeting.

They perjured themselves when they each swore that they discussed and decided on nothing during the executive session, except what was on the agenda.

The video and photo documentarian of my travail with the leadership of the APS, photojournalist Mark Bralley, actually managed to tape Board Member Robert Lucero suggesting before they adjourned that, that was what they needed to do.

There is no Character Counts! in the Albuquerque Public Schools because there is not one board member or senior administrator who is willing to stand up in front of students and promise to require no more from students than they require of them self.

Likewise, there is not one board member or senior administrator willing to stand up before students and explain to them in words they can understand, why they will not.

Why students are expected to hold themselves honestly accountable to higher standards of conduct than the law, and school board members and senior administrators are not?

photos; Robbins ched macquigg
Senator Domenici, Robert Lucero, Mark Bralley 

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