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ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Once a rising star in education circles, Former Superintendent Dallas Dance faces perjury charges for failing to report consulting fees in the six figures, and to a lesser degree, Interim Superintendent Verletta White, never reported more modest fees she received on an yearly basis.
State Senator James Brochin (D-Baltimore County) says that double-dipping has to stop.
“She said it was an oversight over four years and each year she was supposed to report outside income, and we may have a legislative fix for that,” said Brochin, “Senator Jennings and I have put a piece of legislation in that we’ve just ordered that said from now on, any superintendent can’t have any outside income. I mean, my goodness, you’re got $259,000 a year, you get a car, you get a housing allowance, you get a credit card to go to lunch and breakfast with people all the time. I mean, ‘Enough!'”
Despite initial resistance by school administrators, Brochin insisted on an audit of some of the spending practices in the Baltimore County Schools system, and questions surround what access companies received due to dance and whites’ outside work.
Brochin says at the heart of the matter is a Chicago-based company called Education Research and Development Institute or ERDI, which offered free flights and easy money to administrators while charging tech companies to give them exclusive access to them.
“You can do a bronze membership for $5,000, a silver member ship for $8,000 or a gold membership for $10,000 and they’re guaranteeing sit downs, and I just thought it was a very unusual way of doing business,” said Brochin, “It didn’t pass the smell test for me.”
State senators will question White over those relationships in Annapolis on Friday raising concerns, which may extend well beyond a failure to report making money on the side.
“I had never seen so many no-bid contracts and the problem and the reason I don’t think we’re finished with this dilemma is some of these no-bid contracts were in direct relationship to the meetings that ERDI facilitated between the technology companies and the former superintendent and the current superintendent,” said Brochin.
House leaders from Baltimore County also plan to question White in two weeks, and they, like their Senate counterparts, are expected to question the school board’s ability or lack of it in providing oversight as the outside work and no-bid contracts unfolded.
PGCPS system and the Culture of pay to play as a training ground for Many Counties in Maryland and payoff of lawyers to derail proceedings
Board of Education for Prince George’s County has in the last several years engaged in an organized scheme to defraud the public as part of the culture of pay to play working closely with THE O’NEAL LAW FIRM, LLP; THATCHER LAW FIRM; SULLIVAN, TALBOTT & BATT; BRYAN CHAPMAN; RMA & ASSOCIATES, LLC; ROBERT E. CAPPELL; HARDNETT & ASSOCIATES; BRADFORD ASSOCIATES; PESSIN KATZ LAW, P.A.; MARYLAND STATE EDUCATION ASSOCIATION; ASSOCIATION OF SUPERVISORY & ADMINISTRATIVE SCHOOL; MARYLAND STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION; C. SUKARI HARDNETT, LLC and other co-conspirators have engaged in an ongoing willful endeavor to engage in criminal undertaking while defrauding Plaintiffs in a variety of settings which is ongoing both criminal and civil activities throughout Maryland, Washington DC and virginia (DMV).
That, these illegal actions are being coordinated through a number of unethical events in conspiracy with other parties in Maryland, Virginia and in Washington DC and involve public corruption fueled by the Kleptocracy regimes on several levels with epicenter being in Prince George’s County Maryland and Washington DC.
These illegal activities are ongoing in nature as part of racketeering activity organized by the Thatcher Law Firm on behalf of the Board of Education for Prince George’s County after receiving more than $5 million dollars starting during the tenure of Dr. William Hite Jr. These illegal schemes have other participants starting with the Maryland office of the Attorney General, Maryland State Department of Education, Prince George’s County office of the county Executive and the AFSCME International Union et al.
UNION CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
There is a strong coordination starting with former employees of prince George’s county education association (PGCEA) union. The many former senior officers starting with Christian Rhodes, current director of Labor relations and others in the other unions with ties to Maryland state Education Association (MSEA), have created a conflicts of interests so strong that it’s grounding educational outcomes in the Prince George’s County.
To make the matters worse, the Chairman of the board who is brother in law to County Executive Rushern Baker works for the mother-ship National Education Association (NEA). In this kind of situation, any grievance brought about will certainly will not work due to concealment of the issues. As a result, hundreds of students and staff are impacted. Many of the senior union officials are simply lining up their pockets as the staff and children in the county suffer real damages.
In addition, besides being the President of PGCEA, Hon. Theresa Mitchell Dudley also serves in the Democratic Central committee for Prince George’s county. Does the later role also create a strong conflict of interest with the county? How does serving the teachers and Democratic Central committee for Prince George’s county serve the interest of teachers?
(more to come)
BOYCOTT THESE LAW-FIRMS AND ORGANIZATIONS OPERATING IN MARYLAND INVOLVED IN MAJOR FRAUD
- THE O’NEAL LAW FIRM, LLP;
- THATCHER LAW FIRM;
- SULLIVAN, TALBOTT & BATT;
- BRYAN CHAPMAN;
- RAOUF ABDULLAH & RMA & ASSOCIATES, LLC;
- ROBERT E. CAPPELL;
- HARDNETT & ASSOCIATES;
- BRADFORD ASSOCIATES;
- PESSIN KATZ LAW, P.A.;
- MARYLAND STATE EDUCATION ASSOCIATION;
- ASSOCIATION OF SUPERVISORY & ADMINISTRATIVE SCHOOL;
- MARYLAND STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION;
- C. SUKARI HARDNETT, LLC
- CALIFORNIA CASUALTY INDEMNITY EXCHANGE
- MARYLAND OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL
- PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY OFFICE OF THE COUNTY EXCUTIVE
- ROGER THOMAS AND The Law Office of Roger C. Thomas, Esquire
- AFSCME International Union
- ACE-AFSCME LOCAL 2250
SPRINGDALE, Md. – In a 6-page letter obtained by FOX 5, a group of at least a half-dozen parents allege that coaches bullied, harassed and hazed members of the novice cheer squad at Charles Herbert Flowers High School in Prince George’s County.
The letter outlines allegations of coaches calling students profane names, mismanagement of program fees and physical retribution in the form of extra exercise for students whose parents complained about the practices.
The parents did not speak on the record with FOX 5 for fear of retribution aimed at their daughters, but they chose community activist and Maryland State Senate candidate Everett Browning to speak on their behalf.
“We all understand tough love, understand coaching, but calling a young lady who has come for a cheerleading team, constantly calling her a b***h, constantly calling her other words to her face, calling her dumb, stupid and telling her she’s not good enough to be a part of the program is unacceptable,” said Browning.
The letter also details student complaints about being pushed to exercise to the point of absolute exhaustion.
“[They are] pushing some of these ladies to where they are throwing up and physically sick and ill, and they are threatened not to tell their parents about it because if they do, they are threatened, they will be thrown off the team,” Browning said.
He said when the parent complaints to coaching staff continued, the novice squad was disbanded.
“This has been going on for almost a year and unfortunately when the parents decided to stand up together, the coach decided to disband the team,” Browning said. “So instead of addressing it, they just told these girls you are no longer going to be able to come here and participate.”
Prince George’s County Public Schools spokesperson John White confirmed the school district is investigating the allegations and conducting interviews with staff and students. The principal is in the process of meeting with parents to address their concerns.
“We always want to make sure that our staff and our coaches are treating children with the same respect that they would want to receive and so we take the allegations seriously,” said White. “We have begun to interview students as well as adults in the building to find out exactly what has occurred.”
The parents are asking that the coaches be replaced, their money be accounted for and the school to guarantee their daughters can participate in cheer and be protected from harassment.
Published on Jul 12, 2017The Prince George’s Board of Education has three of the youngest school board members in Maryland. Learn who influenced them to run for office & what they consider important issues in the educational system. Patricia Villone reports.
A circuit court judge in Maryland is accused by a former staffer of sexual harassment.
Prince George’s County Circuit Court Judge Hassan El-Amin’s former administrative assistant Denise Lowe-Williams said she lived with ongoing harassment by her then-boss for years, but she felt like she had to deal with it because she was an at-will employee.
“He would take these pictures, and I asked him eventually, ‘What are you going to do with these pictures?’ and he said he was going to make a calendar,” Williams said.
Judge El-Amin once made a crude comment indicating he was aroused by a skirt she wore, Williams said. He also told Williams he liked the way her behind looked in a dress she wore, she said.
He also found a way to be inappropriate with evidence from a case over which he presided, she said.
“It had something to do with, I think, sexual abuse, or something like that, and he had explicit pictures, and he called me in his office to show me these pictures,” Williams said.
She finally became fed up, filed a complaint and hired an attorney. But his behavior got worse, she said.
“When he told me I wasn’t giving him enough attention, I just needed to seek help,” Williams said.
She said she began seeing a therapist.
After filing her complaint, a letter to Williams’ attorney from the Maryland Attorney General’s Office said, “Remedial action was taken to both address and prevent any potential harassing conduct.”
Williams feels there should be more transparency, as the letter said the discipline is confidential.
“A lot of people ask me, ‘Well, what’s going on Denise?’ You know, ‘What are they doing?’ I don’t know. You know why I don’t know? All I’m told is that he’s been sanctioned,” Williams said.
After she filed her complaint, all of the judges in the 7th Judicial Circuit–which includes Charles County, St. Mary’s County, Calvert County and Prince George’s County were trained again on appropriate office behavior.
Williams still works at the Prince George’s County courthouse, but she’s been reassigned so she no longer works with Judge El-Amin.
“My hope is that if somebody else has been through this or is going through this that this will encourage them to speak up about it,” Williams said.
News4 contacted El-Amin’s chambers and he said he had no comment on the allegations.
Source: Former Staffer Accused Maryland Judge of Years of Sexual Harassment | NBC4 Washington http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/local/Former-Staffer-Accuses-Maryland-Judge-Years-Sexual-Harassment-415520063.html?_osource=SocialFlowTwt_DCBrand#ixzz4alf07mzQ
According to keen observers of the Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) system, the recent all-time high grad rates presented to the media – is work of fiction and misrepresentation. The reasons why PGCPS is cooking up numbers are considered many but can be tailored down to the following
- A bill pending in Maryland legislature to repeal HB1107 (See PG 402-17),
- the system is facing several lawsuits due misconduct by the executives,
- PGCPS corruption is spreading to other states (See here) and (here)
- Some Board members themselves in Prince George’s County might be preparing to run for a future political office.
- County Executive plans to run for Maryland wide state office.
- CEO Kevin Maxwell wants to have another new contract.
- The Democratic party regime in Maryland wants to show off good numbers.
Real improvements in a school system such as Prince George’s County take time and hard work. Miraculous sudden improvements in student achievement as shown below in the article is likely the result of outright fraud or a rigged evaluation system designed to produce desired results. Several people who have been following this agrees with this assessment. (See facebook screen shots below).
UPPER MARLBORO — For the fourth consecutive year, Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) is celebrating increased graduation rates.
On Tuesday, the Maryland State Department of Education released its annual Maryland Report Card detailing graduation and drop out rates for the 2015-2016 school year, and PGCPS has a lot to celebrate, said its Chief Executive Officer Kevin Maxwell.
“I’m very, very proud of the work that we’re doing,” he said. “We came in 2013 after the 2013 scores were at 74.1 and we said, ‘we should be able to do better than this.’”
For 2016, the county school system reached an all-time high in graduation rates in the new scaling system that was introduced in 2010. The state of Maryland also set a new record.
Prince George’s seniors are now graduating at a rate of 81.44 percent – a 2.69 percentage point increase over the 2014-2015 school year, which saw a 78.75 percent rate. The statewide average now sits at 87.61 percent, up more than half a percentage point from last year.
Montgomery County took home a 0.47 percent increase, while Anne Arundel had 1 percent. In Virginia, Fairfax County saw a 0.2 percentage point loss as Arlington County saw a 1.8 percentage point decrease, though both Virginia systems remain in the 90 percents for graduation, according to Virginia Department of Education data.
Moreover, since 2010, the state has seen a six-point increase in graduation rates, while Prince George’s County saw a 5.26 increase.
“The new data is great news for Maryland, as the high school diploma is the important first step of a successful journey,” said State Superintendent Karen Salmon. “We continue to strengthen our standards and our classrooms to better prepare each student for employment or additional education.”
Maxwell also attributed PGCPS’ success to a number of administrative changes on how schools address struggling students.
“We did a number of things and we’ve just been consistently working on getting better. We developed the early warning system and we went to the public education leadership program at Harvard to refine that work,” Maxwell said.
The early warning system helps PGCPS target struggling students and their needs, Maxwell said. That also helps the individual schools get the support needed to reach their goals.
The school system also initiated a credit recovery system to allow students who have fallen behind recover credit for their missed work.
Segun Eubanks, chair of the county’s board of education, said those changes have resulted in evident progress as PGCPS saw “promising” increases across the board – at their specialty, vocational and neighborhood schools alike.
Some of the biggest increases were at Surrattsville High School, which saw an increase of 10.61 percent, Tall Oaks Vocational, which saw an increase of 17.56 percent, and Gwynn Park and Suitland high schools, which both increased by around seven percentage points.Graduation rates for Caucasian students increased by 1.4 points, to 80.3 percent. African American students’ rates rose 4.16 points, to 85.4, while Asian students rose 2.45 to 91.7 percent and American Indian or Alaskan Native students rose 13.26 points to nearly 72 percent, after a significant drop for that cohort in 2015.
Hispanic/Latino graduation rates, however, dropped by 0.64 percentage points.
Special education students saw a 6.36-point increase in their rates over 2015, bringing their rate to approximately 67.4 percent. Students on free and reduced meals also saw increases, as their graduation rate rose by two points to 77.49 percent.
“We talk about every student, in every school, everyday,” Eubanks said. “This is a focus on saying, ‘this is about the system, this is about all kids.’ All means all, so that’s the kind of mentality we’re trying to have.”
County Executive Rushern Baker, III said he is ecstatic over the increase and pointed to Maxwell’s leadership as a turning point for the school system.
“These are the things that I asked Dr. Maxwell to do when we hired him, and that is to come here and turn around our graduation rate,” he said. “And the reason it’s so important is that we know if our young people come out of high school with at least a high school diploma, that puts them on a path where they can get a job, where they can go on to community college for a four-year degree. But their chances are so much better.”
Other notable increases were at Potomac, with a 5.2 percentage point increase after a 13-point increase in 2015 over 2014’s 57.8 percent graduation rate. Bowie rose roughly 4.7 percentage points at the same time Friendly rose 4.5 points, Charles H. Flowers rose 4.8, and High Point rose 3.3. Rates at the now-closed Forestville rose by nearly four points.
“They show our residents of the county how well the public school system is doing preparing our children to graduate, and I think it gives greater confident of our folks to put their children into our public school system,” Baker said.
This year also showed an increase in schools that now rest in the 90percent zone for high school graduations. Bowie High broke into the 90 range, as did Charles H. Flowers, Gwynn Park and Surrattsville. DuVal increased from 91.6 to 92.3 while Eleanor Roosevelt moved from 90.45 to 91.47 and Frederick Douglass increased from 90.3 to almost 92 percent.
Dr. Henry A. Wise, Jr. is just outside 90 with an 89.17 percent graduation rate.
“Those percentages, they actually represent kids who are graduating that might not have been graduating a few years ago and that’s a credit to the work we’re been doing and it gives them opportunities they wouldn’t be having,” Maxwell.
Eubanks said, though he is proud of the accomplishments the school system has made in gradation rates, he also noted the school system is not just graduating students for the sake of moving them along. PGCPS is also proud of the quality of its graduates and their accomplishments, he said.
“We’re graduating with higher standards,” Eubanks said. “We’re keeping up with preparedness for people for jobs and a career. So if we’re graduating at higher percentages and they’re ready, that’s the way we want to go.”
Despite gains, both Maxwell and Eubanks said the school system still has “a lot of work to do.”
The Hispanic graduation rate decreased while students with limited English proficiency (LEP) also decreased by 4 percentage points from 53.61 percent in 2015 to 49.6 in 2016. That also reflects a consistent decrease since 2013 when the LEP graduation rate stood at 63 percent.
A few schools within PGCPS also saw some significant decreases in their graduation rates. Croom Vocational saw a more than seven-point dip. Northwestern Evening School saw a five-point decrease and the Community-Based Classrooms experienced a nearly 13-percentage-point fall.
In addition Fairmont Heights, Parkdale, Central and Baldensburg all saw 1 and 2 percent decreases.
And while an increasing number of PGCPS high schools are reaching 90 percent and above rates, schools like High Point and Northwestern are still in the 60 percent range.
Maxwell said his goal is still to catch up to the state average, though he admitted brining up PGCPS’ rates would increase the overall state percentage as well.
“We’re really proud of where we are, but we know we still have a lot of work to do,” he said. “We’re one of the larger districts in the state, so when we get better, the whole state gets better. That’s true, but we can still close that gap and we’re going to continue to pursue that.”