Monthly Archives: March 2019

D.C. accuses another batch of PG families for fraudulently enrolling children in city schools

 

sasscer1Due to mismanagement, cronyism, corruption, nepotism, etc. within the Prince George’s County public schools (PGCPS), a big number of PGCPS parents are choosing to enroll their children in Washington DC Public Schools fraudulently and at high risky to their families. It appears parents in Washington DC public schools who have been monitoring the situation and might have reported the practice to the office of D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine after countless observations. One parent wrote, “I love this. We DC residents pay a ton to live here and I see car after car of MD plates dropping off kids at DC schools.” Another one wrote “Same here! I notice a surprising amount of MD plate cars dropping kids off at the schools in my neighborhood and that I pass on my commute to work.” Another wrote, “This is important work…I see MD plates on cars dropping kids off every day when I walk my child to school.”

There is also a greatest Twitter handle in the DMV: @MD_Driver_in_DC which boosts of violations of the residency rules from Maryland to Washington DC . (Read the descriptor of the Twitter account here www.twitter.com/MD_Driver_in_DC

Political corruption, theft, and incompetence have been the hallmark of PG government for as long as anyone can remember. There’s a reason that our school system is the worst in the state of Maryland (with the possible exception of Baltimore City). The recent audit which painted the county in bad light shows why each of the 24 Public School systems should be required to do a periodic compliance and performance audit. Big systems like PGCPS and Montgomery County should have a permanent audit group; smaller systems could select a contractor from a list of such firms approved by the Maryland State Board of Education.  “The state’s audit is not done frequently enough and is only a compliance audit which looks only for conformance to applicable laws.  Each audit should also include a performance audit to question whether various actions are effective.  For instance, if an organization acquires 100 printers, a compliance audit would show if all laws and regulations were followed.  A performance audit would ask why they bought 100 printers when they have only 50 employees,” stated one observer on social media.
“Each public school system eats up half the budget of their jurisdiction.  It’s high time we have accountability,” he concluded.

“Dr. Monica Goldson is not the leader you want in charge!  Note her saviour style language i.e. giving the system procurement leadership it has not had in 15 years?  Note the effort to take the approval authority away from the School Board.  Systems don’t cheat people do!  Whenever people talk about improving systems most time they are attempting to hide personal indulgences or ineffectiveness,” another parent stated on Facebook. She added that, “Is the sky blue? Have you ever tried washing clothes with dirty water? Does the clothes ever get clean and fresh? Gimme a break – Corruption County and then they want to get after folks who call them out. I say when you have clean hands its your duty to expose this cancer-like riddled infected administration. Are their employees succinctly fit to be in the positions they place them in or is this completely pay to play all the way? IJS Just run around the county and hold coffee and chat … about what …..when you already are compromised – get in there and fix it…”

It’s a pity and a shame that many black-run governments and school boards mismanage the trust placed in them. Over the years, PGCPS has been paying off lawyers and there are clear cases where judges have been paid off too in Maryland to maintain the status quo at the expense of the public. These illegal activities must be discouraged at every opportunity by both state and Federal governments as they deprive people of life, liberty, and property, without due process of law.

We reprint the report by Washington Post article below:

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“Our office will continue to bring actions against any individuals who try to fraudulently take advantage of free schooling for District students,” said D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine. (Win Mcnamee/Getty Images)

By Perry Stein

For the fourth time in the past year, the District is accusing families from the Maryland suburbs of fraudulently claiming to live in the city so their children could attend D.C. public schools. And three of the seven adults named in lawsuits worked for the school system at the time of the alleged fraud.

The lawsuit is the latest sign that District officials are more stringently enforcing residency fraud laws, which require families attending a D.C. public school to pay tuition if they live outside of the city.

The families skirted paying the required tuition, and the city’s attorney general said he is seeking more than $700,000 in unpaid fees and penalties, according to the lawsuit.

This is the fourth batch of residency-fraud lawsuits the city has filed in D.C. Superior Court in the past year, collectively seeking more than $2.6 million in unpaid tuition and damages.

“Residency fraud not only cheats our taxpayers, but it also hurts District children who play by the rules, and frequently rely on the school lottery process to attend the schools of their choice,” D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine said in a statement. “Our office will continue to bring actions against any individuals who try to fraudulently take advantage of free schooling for District students.”

The District alleges in three lawsuits that the families collectively sent six children to city schools between 2009 and 2015 without paying tuition.

Schools attended by the children include the now-closed Potomac Preparatory Public Charter School, Maury Elementary, Shining Stars Montessori Academy Public Charter School, Noyes Education Campus and Phelps Architecture, Construction and Engineering High School. Annual tuition at the schools for students from outside the city ranges from $10,000 to $14,000.

Under D.C. law, authorities wanting redress from lawbreaking suburban parents can seek to triple the amount of tuition those parents avoided by using a fraudulent D.C. address.

Named in the lawsuits Wednesday are April and Nicholas Fennell, residents of Oxon Hill, Md.; Chantese Alston, a former resident of Capitol Heights, Md., and current resident of the District; James Alston, a resident of Oxon Hill; and Rasaki Shittu and Rashidat Shittu of Upper Marlboro, Md.

Asaki Shittu, identified as the sister of Rashidat Shittu and a former employee of Noyes Education Campus, was also named in a complaint. The lawsuit alleges that Asaki Shittu handled enrollment matters at the school and helped her sister fill out false forms claiming D.C. residency to send her child to the school.

April and Nicholas Fennell are employed by Imagine Hope Community Public Charter School as a front desk liaison and physical education teacher, according to the D.C. attorney general’s office.

The families could not immediately be reached for comment Wednesday.

Residency fraud has been an ongoing problem but came under increased scrutiny last year after a city investigation alleged that more than 30 percent of students at Duke Ellington School of the Arts — more than 160 teenagers — lived outside the city and were not paying tuition. But in October, administrators and parents at the school said the city had determined at least 90 of the accused students live in the District.

The Ellington investigation laid bare the complicated lives of students in an urban school system and the complexities that come with investigating residency fraud.

The D.C. Office of the Attorney General says it has dedicated additional resources to combating residency fraud over the past two years, including more investigators and attorneys.

Via Washington Post

Unless the Prince george’s county parents demand better leadership for their school system and reject current leaders advancing mismanagement, cronyism, corruption, nepotism, etc., they will be crying like a donkey shown here many years to come.

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CEO responds to investigation into Prince George’s County Public Schools’ contracts

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Interim CEO Dr. Monica Goldson

 – After a state report showed Prince George’s County Public Schools is not following the law when awarding contracts, the head of schools says there will be a deeper investigation to determine the reasons why and if there was criminal intent.

Interim CEO Dr. Monica Goldson is calling for a forensic audit by an outside agency to look at 13 sole-source contracts worth $6.8 million that did not have school board approval or any justification for being sole-sourced.

State investigators with the Office of Legislative Audits did a random sample of contracts in their audit, so problems identified could be more prevalent.

FOX 5 asked Dr. Goldson Tuesday if school employees could have been getting kickbacks from the contracts in question.

“That’s what a forensic audit will actually reveal,” Goldson said.

She went on to say the audit will look for ethical wrongdoing and criminality.

Prince George’s County is the state’s second-largest school system with a $2 billion budget and the ability to hire hundreds of vendors. State investigators found contracts were awarded to vendors that weren’t the best or the cheapest and contracts going to certain vendors with no competition or school board approval as state law requires. The audit specifies $85 million worth of contracts lacking proper justification or board approval.

RELATED: Audit finds PGCPS broke the law when awarding millions in school contracts

What’s worse is the same state investigators found the same issues in past audits. In 2014, auditors found “PGCPS could not provide documentation that awards were properly made for 12 contracts valued at $13 million.”

In 2006, auditors found “PGCPS did not maintain required documentation justifying the use of sole-source procurement totaling $1 million.”

FOX 5 asked Dr. Goldson why changes weren’t made after prior findings.

“What I can tell you is that we have now selected an ethics and compliance officer whose sole job is to make sure that we follow up on every finding of every audit that exists,” she said. “What I don’t want to do is be back in the same spot four years from now.”

Dr. Goldson used to be the chief operating officer of the school system, meaning she oversaw the procurement department.

“(I) definitely had no sense that there was a contract that was not being awarded properly,” she said.

Questions remain about who did know about it. Goldson said criminal prosecution is on the table.

“If that’s what comes out of that audit then that’s what we’ll do,” said Goldson.

Via Fox5 DC

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According to Tonya Wingfield, For any investigation to reflect the integrity needed to reveal all the truth, the Interim CEO, Dr. Monica Goldson, can have no involvement in the process. She was the COO over Purchasing and Transportation during a number of the years these reports cover. Dr. Goldson allowed Brenda Allen, to harass a qualified Procurement Director to the point that she resigned and Dr. Goldson then placed Ms. Allen in the director position. Brenda Allen bid steering acts were reported by Ms. Donna Young. Approximately, two weeks after taking the evidence to Dr. Maxwell, Ms. Young was brought up on false charges and ultimately terminated. Dr. Goldson participated in Ms. Young’s firing. You can read for yourself Donna Young vs Prince George’s County Board of Education. There more to consider which I will present to the school board to include seeking to recover the $800,000 paid to Dr. Maxwell.

 

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PGCPS Teacher Under Fire Over Slavery Lesson – Administration is accused of cover ups.

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Laura Garon Mayhew

By Reform Sasscer Staff: 

Kids and parents say this Prince George’s County Public School (PGCPS) teacher needs a lesson — in racism.

Dwight D Eisenhower Middle School teacher Laura Garon Mayhew shocked and traumatized children in her social studies class when she singled out black students and told them to pose as slaves to serve as a visual representation to the three-fifths rule. She had 5 students go to the front and told them that 3 of them equaled one slave master. The other Social Studies teachers did not act out this scenario.

Later, Ms. Mayhew was asked by a student why they were not celebrating Black History Month and she mentioned that she was not celebrating it until everyone had a month and that it’s ridiculous to single one culture out,” students and a staffer said. A different student mentioned to another teacher that she mentioned wanted to have white history month. 

Fast forward to March, according to the students and staff in the school, she has the students doing a project celebrating Women’s Month and Irish History Month. 

For the insensitive comments, the principal recently sent out a letter to her 6th-period class, apologizing to the parents for the incident. This was after the principal required her to complete an incident report. (See below the letter sent out to the parents).

There are reports, this past Friday, Dr. Briscoe, made the teacher to verbally apologize to the students as well. Students and staff are not sure if she went out on leave, but they are doubtful of it.

There are confirmed reports that, this teacher has a history of berating black students because she was reported calling 2 students “niggers” under her breath. The statements were given to last year’s Instructional Director and nothing happened. The staff familiar with the situation believe it was because these were students who caused a lot of trouble within the building.

Students said Mayhew, who is white has been at Dwight D Eisenhower for over 5 years. She’s taught different subject areas in the past but now teaches social studies. Mayhew pulled the insensitive stunt in middle school grade classes as part of a unit on the infamous Middle Passage, in which Africans were kidnapped and brought to America as part of the slave trade. The population of slaves would be counted as three-fifths in total when apportioning Representatives, as well as Presidential electors and taxes. The Three-Fifths Compromise was proposed by James Wilson and Roger Sherman, who were both delegates for the Constitutional Convention of 1787.

Kids and adults in Dwight D Eisenhower Middle School, where the student body is 54.77% black, Hispanic 37.37% and 3.32% white and just 2.68% Asians, were horrified by the offensive lessons they said occurred in her class roughly two weeks ago.

“It was a lesson about slavery and the Triangle Trade as well as visual representation to the three-fifths rule,” said one of Dwight D Eisenhower Middle Schools’ students, who asked to remain anonymous.

“She picked the black kids,” the boy said, and instructed them to pose as slaves to serve as a visual representation to the three-fifths rule in front of the class. “She said, ‘You see how it was to be a slave?’ She said, ‘How does it feel?’ “

Dwight D Eisenhower Middle Schools’ ill-conceived lesson isn’t the first time a school teacher has grabbed headlines for giving offensive instruction involving slavery.

In 2013, two teachers from Manhattan Public School 59 taught a lesson that used killing and whipping slaves to teach subtraction and multiplication.

Those teachers weren’t disciplined, but they did receive training in cultural sensitivity, Education officials said.

In recent past, teachers who have displayed racism have been heavily disciplined.

However, in neighboring PGCPS Laurel High School, Principal Dwayne Jones who advanced misconduct and racism with Deborah Toppins is still on the job due to his connection and cover ups with ties to Monica Goldson who is the interim CEO.

In the Maryland  legislature this year, House of Delegates voted overwhelmingly to censure Delegate Mary Ann Lisanti over her use of a racist slur during an after-hours gathering with colleagues in which she called Prince George’s County “a nigger district”.

There are reports that, there are racial issues at Dwight D. Eisenhower Middle School and this has caused many of the former teachers at the school to leave the school or the profession altogether. Majority of the administrators are not strong instructional leaders in this school and they heavily lean on IB Coordinator Stephen Mellen, who happens to be white, but runs the school.  Some of the students believe this their real principal and ignore the current one. This is based on information received. “That being said, it causes for a hostile work environment because the current Principal favors the majority of the white teachers who are empowered to treat our minority children and teachers the way in which they do,” the staff member who wanted to remain anonymous said.

Many staff members hope that the school would receive the help that it deserves. “I am surprised that this situation is happening in PG County,” the staff member stated. “Teachers and staff have been thrown out for less in that building,” the staff member emphasized. “They have been put out of the school for selling candy and/or making inappropriate comments,” the staff member added.

“It is very unfortunate that my journey here at Eisenhower has been filled with disproportionate consequences and opportunities among staff. The vast variety of disciplinary procedures, professional development opportunities, and leadership roles appears to all be based on either race, who you know, or who the principal is scared of instead of giving all staff equal opportunities,” statement issued anonymously stated. 

“I just want someone to help out our building because we are suffering in silence”, the staff member concluded.

We reached out to the teacher Ms. Mayhew for a response to these allegations and by the time of publishing, she had not yet responded.

A parent found out what happened at Ms. Mayhew class and this is what she emailed the teacher. 

My name is ——  and I am the mother of —-. Explain to me in full detail why you thought it was appropriate to have my African-American daughter and another student pose as slaves to serve as a visual representation to the three-fifths rule. Your discernment as an educator is cause for concern as that behavior is intolerable, insensitive and abhorrent. Making African-American children relive the trauma of discrimination that is a symptom of white supremacy is an act of violence. And you, a white woman inflicting harm on African-American children is a clear indication that you should not be allowed around our children, much less in a position of authority over them. Do you re-enact the Holocaust in your curriculum? Do you re-enact the Trail of Tears in your curriculum? My guess is no. So, why in a school where the majority of students are African-American did you commit this heinous act with no regard for the emotional trauma it would result in? Also, Black people were NEVER slaves. Black people were ENSLAVED. There is a big difference that impacts how our children view themselves. Everybody was born free. Black people were stolen, hunted, murdered, discarded and forced to perform inhumane, physical labor. We were enslaved by colonizers. I would appreciate that you teach our children the accurate history of their origins instead of cracking at their self esteem with the notion that they were born inferior. Additionally, my daughter came home to tell me that you said you weren’t celebrating Black History Month until everybody has a month and that it’s ridiculous to single one culture out. As an African-American studies major from the first university to teach African-American studies as an academic discipline, let me share this helpful piece of information that you should know; Black history IS American History. You are not singling out Black culture when you celebrate Black History Month. In fact, you’re re-inserting it into the fabric of America.

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The principal sent out this letter and had her distribute it to one of her classes but it never went to the entire school.

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Principal John P. Mangrum, Dwight d Eisenhower middle

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Dr. Briscoe, made the teacher to verbally apologize to the students as well.

Monica Goldson

Dr. Monica Goldson is the current interim CEO and she is an unexperienced administrator in matters which involve hostile environment in a large school district. There are confirmed allegations of cover ups of many issues in progress in PGCPS.

 

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Former PGCPS Executive Shawn Joseph asks school board in Tennessee to negotiate his departure

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embattled Schools Director Dr. Shawn Joseph advanced corruption in Tennessee and might have broken state and Federal laws willfully. State officials recommended license suspension for Dr. Shawn Joseph

The culture of corruption which began in Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) as part of an organized scheme promises to be a disaster in waiting according to the reports from Tennessee.  The well connected individuals saw several executives transfer to Tennessee when corruption was high. The current fiasco currently in progress in Prince George’s County in which millions disappeared has ties to Tennessee which promises to have both fronts exposed while “water” is already beginning to pick up as corruption spreads. Dr. Shawn Joseph who worked closely with former corrupt Maryland state Superintendent Lilian Lowery is facing his own medicine of sorts after he was caught red handed violating the laws. During his tenure in PGCPS, Dr. Swawn Joseph worked closely with Dr. Monica Goldson after Dr. Crawley left to Alexandria City Schools. Corruption in PGCPS has been very high since then. (See email from Donna Young below).

Systemic corruption erodes the legitimacy of laws and political leadership and makes a flourishing economy impossible. Approaches to combating corruption include improving integrity standards, advocating policies that limit opportunities for corruption, and designing institutional reforms that level the playing field for all businesses.

Tennessee and Maryland citizens are demanding accountability and sanctions after state and Federal  laws were broken willfully by corrupt leadership engaged in a pattern of racketeering activity connected to an enterprise in Maryland.

We reprint the report by newschannel5.com below:

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State officials recommended license suspension for Dr. Shawn Joseph

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Dr. Shawn Joseph told the Metro School Board that it’s time to start discussing the terms of his departure as Nashville’s director of schools.

In remarks at the beginning of Monday night’s board meeting, Joseph told the board that it’s time for “a mutual conversation to figure out how to best transition” to new leadership.

Joseph’s remarks followed months of controversy – a sexual harassment scandal, questionable contracts, and low teacher morale – that led one board member this week to give notice a vote in two weeks on terminating his contract.

It came the same day that NewsChannel 5 revealed the State Board of Education was proposing a one-year suspension of his state license for failing to report teacher misconduct cases.

“If there was a mistake that I made it was that I pushed too hard with too little resources and, as a result, people made errors,” Joseph said.

“The errors were not intentional or willful, as our audit communicated. They were just errors.”

He lashed out at NewsChannel 5 for what he called “biased” reporting and took swipes at his critics on the board.

“This is not a time to point fingers or to blame people,” Joseph said. “It’s a time for action and it’s a time for you to remember your civic duty to vote.”

The schools director also invoked images of Jesus in describing what he had experience.

“I’ll go ahead and leave you with the great rapper and philosopher Tupac Shakur,” Joseph added.

“I ain’t mad at ya. In due time, everybody tends to get what they deserve.”

Via  NewsChannel5 >>> Shawn Joseph asks school board to negotiate his departure

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Major Mess in Tennessee: Former PGCPS Executive license proposed for one-year suspension

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embattled Schools Director Dr. Shawn Joseph.

The culture of corruption which began in Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) as part of an organized scheme promises to be a disaster according to the reports from Tennessee.  The well connected individuals saw several executives transfer to Tennessee when corruption was high. The current fiasco currently in progress in Prince George’s County in which millions disappeared has ties to Tennessee which promises to have both fronts exposed while “water” is already beginning to pick up as corruption spreads.

Corruption erodes trust in government and undermines the social contract. This is cause for concern across the globe, but particularly in contexts of fragility and violence, as corruption fuels and perpetuates the inequalities and discontent that lead to fragility, violent extremism, and conflict.

Corruption impedes investment, with consequent effects on growth and jobs. Countries capable of confronting corruption use their human and financial resources more efficiently, attract more investment, and grow more rapidly.

Tennessee citizens just like Maryland citizens are demanding for accountability and sanctions to the corrupt executives after state and Federal  laws were broken willfully in both states.

We reprint the report by newschannel5.com below:

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embattled Schools Director Dr. Shawn Joseph.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Staff for the Tennessee State Board of Education have proposed a one-year suspension of the license of Metro Schools Director Dr. Shawn Joseph for failing to report teacher misconduct cases, NewsChannel 5 has learned.

Joseph’s lawyer, Chuck Cagle, said the schools director plans to fight the allegations.

“Dr. Shawn Joseph was given notice by the State Board of Education of its intent to seek action against his Tennessee teacher license,” Cagle said in a statement first released to NewsChannel 5 Investigates.

“Dr. Joseph has been in contact with the State Board of Education and will vigorously defend the actions of his office against any allegations.”

Metro Nashville Public Schools rules require the director of schools to have a “professional educator’s license.”

Cagle told NewsChannel 5 Investigates that Joseph plans to ask for a formal contested case hearing to challenge the staff recommendation, which could potentially delay a final decision for months.

However, the latest development comes at a time that Joseph is fighting to save his job.

The State Board of Education’s review of Joseph’s license was prompted by a NewsChannel 5 investigation into the director’s handling of the case involving an Overton High School teacher who was involved in a physical altercation with a student.

Joseph rejected the principal’s recommendation to fire the teacher, giving him a five-day suspension instead.

Under state law, that suspension should have been reported to the State Board of Education for possible action against the teacher’s license.

According to a March 12th letter from the State Board, investigators later discovered that a dozen teacher misconduct cases that Joseph failed to report.

Among them:

  • A teacher who failed to notify anyone about a sexual assault that had been reported to him by a student.
  • A teacher who sent inappropriate Snapchat messages to a student.
  • A teacher who put a student in a choke hold until the student passed out.

During Tuesday night’s school board meeting, Joseph downplayed the allegations against him.

“It’s unrealistic for the head of an organization as large as ours to know that individuals have not done their work,” he told board members.

In a response filed with the State Board of Education, Joseph’s lawyer blamed former human resources employee Scott Lindsey for not filing the proper paperwork.

Lindsey recently told NewsChannel 5 Investigates that he was “stunned” when he first heard that Joseph was blaming him.

He is now suing the district saying that Joseph’s team turned against him as a result of a sexual harassment investigation he conducted against the director’s friend, Mo Carassco.

And after Lindsey tried to put principal Sam Braden on leave for another sexual harassment investigation, the lawsuit says the retaliation continued until he was ultimately forced to resign.

“It was very cowardly, you know, for Dr. Joseph to blame somebody who was not there,” Lindsey said.

“Plus, some of these things happened when I didn’t even work at MNPS anymore – and he apparently blamed me for those as well.”

Joseph’s lawyer gave the state the report on the Overton teacher’s suspension that was prepared by Lindsey, signed by Joseph and sent back to the H-R employee.

But Lindsey said it was always the director’s office that submitted those reports to the state.

“First of all, I don’t have the authority to send anything to the state,” he said.

“If I had the authority, there would been a lot of MNPS teahcers that probably would have been reported to the state. But I simply don’t have that authority.”

Joseph also argued that Metro Schools is a big organization and it’s tough for one man to make sure every single report is properly filed.

He said the controversy has highlighted the need to have an attorney specifically assigned to work on human resources issues.

“In a district with over 11,000 employees, for the director of schools to potentially receive such a consequence is a bit extreme,” he told the board.

The State Board of Education gave Joseph 30 days to request a contested-case hearing to challenge the staff recommendations.

via Channel5.Com >>>State proposes one-year suspension of Shawn Joseph’s license

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Major Fiasco in Tennessee: Former PGCPS Executive in water after breaking laws blindly.

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embattled Schools Director Dr. Shawn Joseph.

The culture of corruption which began in Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) as part of an organized scheme promises to be a disaster according to the reports from Tennessee.  The well connected individuals saw several executives transfer to Tennessee when corruption was high. The current fiasco currently in progress in Prince George’s County in which millions disappeared has ties to Tennessee which promises to have both fronts exposed while “water” is already beginning to pick up as corruption spreads.

Tennessee citizens are demanding accountability and sanctions after state and Federal  laws were broken willfully.

We reprint the report by newschannel5.com below:

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embattled Schools Director Dr. Shawn Joseph.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A Metro School Board member has given notice that she plans to bring a motion to terminate the contract of embattled Schools Director Dr. Shawn Joseph.

In response, Joseph says he’ll be looking for a “mutually agreeable way” to part with the board, hinting at potential discussion of a buyout of his $285,000-a-year contract. He has more than a year left on that contract.

School board member Anna Shepherd set the stage for a vote on April 9th in an email sent Monday morning to chair Sharon Gentry.

“In keeping with the requirement to give adequate notice, please consider this communication as my notice to bring to the April 9th meeting a vote on the board floor by me and our colleagues to terminate Dr. Joseph’s contract,” Shepherd wrote in her email.

That came following an expected move during a school board retreat Friday where the board went into executive session to get advice from a Metro lawyer. Joseph attempted to enter the room, but was told the discussion was about him and he could not participate.

“After the last board retreat, I realized that my value system no longer aligns with that of some on this board,” Joseph said in a statement.

“While I have no plans to resign, I will not seek a contract renewal when it expires in June 2020. It is my hope that the board and I will invoke the terms of my contract that allow us to part in a mutually agreeable way and to provide for a proper and effective transition of leadership.”

RELATED: Metro School Board goes behind closed doors without director

Shepherd, a former chair of the school board, had been an outspoken defender of Joseph when he was first hired in July 2016.

Even through repeated questions about Joseph’s handling of a sexual harassment scandal inside the district and questions about how he spent Metro Schools’ money, Shepherd had withheld any public criticisms of the schools director.

That changed dramatically with the release of a recent report from a Nashville law firm that reviewed the district human resources practices. The report warned that Metro Schools faces a morale crisis that threatens its ability to attract and keep good employees.

RELATED: Metro schools director gets low marks on board evaluations

“This is a very difficult decision to make as I had high hopes when we hired Dr. Joseph,” Shepherd said in a statement.

“The results of both the financial and HR audit are very disappointing but even more disappointing is the lack of any action around any of the recommendations.”

Three school board members – Fran Bush, Amy Frogge and Jill Speering – have already stated they believe it is time for Joseph to go.

School board members Gini Pupo-Walker and Rachael Anne Elrod released a joint statement in which they said the April 9th meeting should focus on “revisiting the terms of his contract and finding another path forward that is mutually agreed upon by all parties.”

“The job of our board is to rebuild confidence in our capacity to lead, and we commit to working closely with one another, the Mayor and Metro council as we move forward with critical conversations on the budget and priorities for the year ahead,” Pupo-Walker and Elrod said.

Mayor David Briley spoke with the school board chair Monday morning, according to his spokesperson.

“He is deeply concerned that the students and teachers are suffering as a result of the discord at the Board and District levels,” Thomas Mulgrew said.

“Mayor Briley will work with Dr. Gentry to create a plan that moves the District forward and establishes the stability that our children and teachers deserve.”

Via newschannel5.com >>> Metro School Board sets vote on terminating Dr. Shawn Joseph

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PGCPS Teacher claims neglected bathrooms equivalent to a ‘jail cell’

177701f7-709c-44d3-a197-ada327db5f82_1140x641.jpgBy Michael Quander

RIVERDALE, Md. — A Prince George’s County teacher exposed what appears to be decaying conditions at Parkdale High School.

Monica Brokenborough supplied photos that appear to show crumbling ceiling tiles, evidence of a rodent problem, and doors missing from bathroom stalls.

“I was absolutely shocked,” Brokenborough said. “The students have brought to my attention that a lot of their bathrooms actually resemble something that’s kind of comparable to a jail cell.”

Brokenborough told WUSA9 her students at Parkdale High School snapped pictures from inside of the boy’s and girl’s bathrooms.

The images showed doors missing from stalls, and one photo exhibited a partition that appeared to be ripped from the wall.

“There’s just a toilet sitting out in the open for the whole world to see,” Brokenborough described.

Brokenborough explained that the problems extended past the bathrooms and into the classrooms.

The music teacher supplied WUSA9 with pictures of holes in the walls, missing or broken ceiling tiles, and spots in her classroom where she put duct tape over mouse holes.

“There’s been a couple of times where my classes had to evacuate because of the presence of a rodent,” Brokenborough said.

Findings in a school climate survey from 2017 revealed most students believed the school was not clean.a11630be-5eff-4c43-bdc2-3bd1b361480e_750x422.jpg

More than half of the students surveyed agreed that the bathrooms were not cleaned or maintained well.

The school does the climate survey every two years, according to the website for Prince George’s County Public Schools.

New survey results are expected to be published in Fall 2019.

Prince George’s County Schools sent us this statement regarding the issues:

Work orders were issued two to three months ago for the repairs in question (i.e., bathroom stall and classroom). Regarding the bathroom, the project was delayed pending ordering of the replacement part. Other bathrooms in the school are fully operational. We expect both the classroom ceiling tiles and bathroom partition to be replaced within 30 days. Our environmental teams confirmed today there is no rodent infestation at the school. 

Via WUSA 9

Parkdale High Sschool Principal response after the WUSA9 news story…

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