Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Friends and Family Plan

Ok - we've had so doggone many comments posted about the "Friends and Family" plan that we have decided to create a permanent page to collect all we can as to "who's related to whom" and what their job is - how they got it - if they are qualified - and how much they are paid.

Add your knowledge to the comments below.


UPDATE: This thread has been reopened with the following request.

Just post the facts - use a simple format that looks like the below....

Person, title, relative/friend (description of who that person is), salary (if known)

Philandra Guillory, Oversees DCSS 24 (title) Mother is Frances Edwards (former DCSS Board Member), $100K+
Please add in parentheses who the relative or friend is.."


ANOTHER UPDATE: Check out our post entitled, Important new nepotism legislation could cause problems for Zepora Roberts to find out about the nepotism clause inserted into HB 251 and recently passed into law. This new law could actually prevent Zepora from seeking reelection due to the fact that one of her daughters currently employed by DCSS was promoted to Assistant Principal in 2009.


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Anonymous said...

Frankie freeman was a school bus driver and she married robin freeman who's father was the super. She went to the top ater that. Friends and family

Anonymous said...

They all knew, Frankie Freeman Marcus Turk secretary who makes over 65,000 a year covered it up too.

Val Head who was a secretary without a degree who now makes over 80,000 a year. DCSS changed her title to fit her salary.

Ronald Ramsey who is DCSS attorney and terminates when someone questions the wrong doings of DCSS.

Robert Tucker who was retired and has never left the system are all close buddies of Patti Pope Reed and Crawford Lewis.

When Patti Pope Reed was employed we did not have a salary schedule that would fit the salary she was to be paid. Crawford made us create a salary schedule for her. She started at $189,000.

When Crawford Lewis took on his role, in DCSS salaries increased over 30,000 each.

There is so much corruption at DCSS, everyone is afraid to speak about it because they could terminated.

They all should be investigated.

Anonymous said...

Joanne Newby and Sandra Sanders...both retired and still on the payroll.
The entire Frankie Callaway family eats off DeKalb.
Zeporah Robert's daughter, Tracey Jones, is an assistant principalat the Transistion Academy.

Anonymous said...

Sean Tartt is some how related to Fannie Tartt. He is the principal of Narvie J. Harris Theme School. He was Ms. Harris' god son.

His brother was hired for the Title 1 parent meeting this spring.

Anonymous said...

CFO Marcus Turk, whom Pat Pope somehow passed all her contracts and change orders and other nonsense by him, is related to a former DCSS administrator.

Former and very powerful BOE member Frances Edwards is the mother of Philandra Guillory, who somehow was the only person from the DCSS Public Relations Office not to lose her job. Philandra is in charge of DCSS TV, which is horrible and a waste of a precious resource; it could be truly educational and informative. Philandra has no prior experience in TV/media, and makes well over $100k per year.

Philandra's husband, Frances' son-in-law, David Guillory, who makes well over $110k per, is in charge of DCSS Transportation, despite having no prior experience in transportation.

Edwards' son Jamal is a CTSS for DCSS MIS. Jamal Edwards is famous for being AWOL for six months from his school, yet he retained his job while many other CTSS' were terminated during the last round of budget cuts.
Where in the World is Jamal Edwards??

Frances Edwards has also helped many friends of her family to be hired by DCSS. Nepotism and cronyism rules DCSS, not competence and experience.

Anonymous said...

Why are retired DCS administrators like Robert Tucker, Joanne Newby and Sandra Sanders STILL ON PAYROLL??!!

With all of the Lewis/Pope nonsense, now is the time to reform. Not so long ago, there were over 80 retired administrators on payroll as high=paid consultants. This has to stop. When our childen are suffering with a $100 mil budget deficit, retired friends of the Central Office need to be the first item cut from the budget.

Heck, if Robert Tucker wants to be so involved in DCSS, and wow is he still pwoerful as Ron Ramsey's right hand man, then Robert Tucker can volunteer his time.

This is the time for change and reform, yet our BOE and TOm Bowen are squandering the opportunity.

Anonymous said...

Velinda Bailey....retired and still working at Destiny Academy

Anonymous said...

Robert Freeman's son, "Little Bob"..moved quickly through the ranks.

Anonymous said...

This came across as a rumor in one of the blogs last week, but according to the AJC, it's official..."DeKalb shortens school year by one day"


"The school board voted 7-1 Monday night to cut the 2010-2011 school calendar from 180 to 179 days. Board member Jim Redovian voted against the move."

"In addition to cutting one instruction day, the calendar removes staff development days....The survey made it clear that teachers wanted to preserve the August pre-planning week and forgo staff development days in October and February,” said Anthony Eitel, the district’s executive director of assessment and accountability."

Anonymous said...

While I agree that this is beneficial...

How many of you got jobs because you had the "hook-up" at a place of employment?

Anonymous said...

Speaking of the calendar...when will they let the employees know about furlough days for next year? The first ones are in 2 weeks, but no one knows what is going on.....great leadership again....

Anonymous said...

"How many of you got jobs because you had the "hook-up" at a place of employment?"

That's all fine and good as long as one is competent, shows up for work, isn't moved around all over the place to find a place where maybe they are competent, and most importantly makes a salary that matches their competence level.

Anonymous said...

The Henderson Family ... Charlie was principal and then made head of DCSS Athletics. Wife Barbara, now deceased, was a manager in HR. Daughter Ceimone is an auditor, and I think her husband (last name Strickland) works for DCSS ... anyone know where? Also the other sister works for DCSS also.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 11:16 pm
Ms. Edwards son is not a CTSS. He got a promotion and is now at the Bryant Center. I believe he is an Network Liaison Specialist or a Systems Engineer.

Anonymous said...

Isn't Tim Freeman, a Deputy Associate Superintendent, Robert Freeman's son?

Anonymous said...

Another one of Zepora Roberts' daughters is a Parent Center Facilitator.

Anonymous said...

Bob Moseley was dating Alice Thompson. Felicia Mitchell is now Felicia Mayfield. (Thompson and Mayfield did switch jobs.

This thread makes me nervous, Cere. Way to much room to get stuff really wrong.

Paula Caldarella said...

Oh, horrors!!! People are dating each other at DCSS.

Geez, if my company had that policy - no dating - I never would have married my husband.

Dekalbparent said...

Cere -

Is there a way to set up a separate place (like a chart) not on the blog itself where people could post what they know? I was thinking about one with three headings: PERSON / EMPLOYEE OR BOE? / RELATIVE(S)

This might cut down on the rumors and speculation that Anon 3:02 is (rightly, in my opinion) uncomfortable with. Then we could verify - or not - whatever is posted.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Paula Caldarella said...

I agree, it will get out of hand. Maybe not with the regular posters here, but with those whose sole purpose is to stir up trouble.

Anonymous said...

I believe that this information is necessary. As there are many friends and family that kept their jobs that are not qualified for the job that they have, make way more money than they are worth, and/or were not laid off because of who their friends and family are.

The public needs to know this, as this needs to stop if our children are going to ever receive a quality education.

Paula Caldarella said...

The public does not need to know who is dating whom - that is just pure gossip. Innocent people's reputations could also be ruined if misinformation, intentional or not, is posted.

Anonymous said...

The public certainly needs to know more than it does now. I returned from the AP reading for world history. I was shocked to hear a colleague from the midwest tell me that she had heard of Dekalb as a place where cheating is tolerated.

Anonymous said...

Our student's education is at state. The best people did not get to keep their jobs when the layoffs were done earlier this month. Tax payers need to know that the best people did not get to keep their job. In other words, the hardest workers were not necessarily the people that kept their jobs earlier this month.

Taxpayers cannot afford to continue or accept the friends and family plan. Questions need to be raised as to why unqualified people are earning so much money.

As far as whom is dating whom. As a teacher, I often hear of affairs and such in the Central Offices. This is not new. It's unprofessional to date within the work place.

Paula Caldarella said...

As long as the employees are not in the same department or report to the same manager, I see nothing wrong with dating in the workplace.

Paula Caldarella said...

btw, dating and dating while married are 2 entirely different animals. However, the purpose of this blog is not to "out" people having an affair.

Anonymous said...

Tim Freeman is and always been an excellent administrator, regardless of who his father is.

Anonymous said...

Many people get their relatives jobs within the same organization. It's mainly a problem if the person is unqualified or overpaid or shown favoritism. Most large organizations have some rules in place. I believe the DCSS BOE has such rules. At least that's what I see in the BOE minutes.

Anonymous said...

I have mixed thoughts with regard to dating in the work place. Depending on the size of the organization and the positions of the individuals involved, there could be conflicts.

For example, two teachers at different schools dating appears harmless without conflict. Should one become a principal at the school of the other, there is a conflict and one should change school. Two high level administrators involved in a personal relationship is potentially kindling for a fire. Two high level administrators rumored to be having an affair is a powder keg just waiting to be set off and maybe folks need to be reassigned or eliminated. Affairs in the workplace are destructive. Why trouble trouble in an already troubled school system?

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 4:29 pm

I don't think it's right to reassign anyone based on rumors. Rumors are exactly that - rumors - in other words not substantiated and usually designed to cast aspersions on a person. Plenty of people meet their future spouses in the organization they work in. I know some of my family and friends have gotten married to wonderful people they met at work. Who among you can't say that?

Anonymous said...

"Tim Freeman is and always been an excellent administrator, regardless of who his father is."

Mr. Freeman, I am sure Tim appreciates your kind words.

Cerebration said...

Interesting input, everyone. I agree that dating might not be exactly what we were looking for, however, we all now know that perhaps a certain high level female could have possibly been promoted due to her tight relationship with the big boss (you know, the one with the Pcard issue).

I think we are all interested in knowing who has placed family members in nice, cushy jobs. At it's core, we'd really like to know if those jobs were ever actually advertised and if anyone else was ever actually interviewed. Personally, I don't see how we can progress to a higher level if we don't spend the energy to seek out the best and brightest talent - in every department.

I'm tired of principals being promoted into business-oriented jobs. We need experienced principals!

I'm tired of seeing situations like the daughter of a former board member making an enormous salary to run a television station, when this is not something she had experience in. Come on - CNN is headquartered in this town - surely we could pick some awesome (premier even) talent from there. But again - did anyone ever know this job had become available? On top of that - CNN offers a fantastic FREE news program for kids (we have a link on the home page) - why doesn't DCSS utilize it?

These are PUBLIC jobs paid for with TAX dollars. This is not a family business or even a corporation. ALL members of the public should at least have access to an opportunity to be considered if they are qualified. All current staff should be assured that they will not lose their job, while someone's family member with less seniority keeps theirs.

This is lawsuit territory people. Our board needs to get a handle on this mess or we may find ourselves owing even more than we do on the construction debacle.

I'm sorry if this post makes some people uncomfortable, but it must be brought into the light or the friends and family nonsense will continue to fester as a boil on the morale of the entire system.

No Duh said...

It is human nature to vent when we work in a place where our co-workers or managers are over-paid and under-qualified. We all want validation that we aren't crazy for feeling the way we do. So, to those of you about to add names to this list, believe me -- we hear you. We believe you. We feel for you. We empathize and sympathize with you. We just don't want you to slip down a slippery slope and consequently, perhaps feel bad about it later.

The list of Friends and Family should be just that -- a list (as Dekalbparent said). The best use of this list will be to secret it into the hands of the new superintendent (pray to God he/she comes from outside the system).

So how about a format that looks like the below....

Person, title, relative/friend (description of who that person is), salary (if known)


Philandra Guillory, Oversees DCSS 24 (title) Mother is Frances Edwards (former DCSS Board Member), $100K+

Please add in parentheses who the relative or friend is -- not all of us have been with the system for years or are familiar with all the employees.

Anonymous said...

OK, I'm sure mistakes will be made which really isn't fair to the named. However, when have things at DCSS been fair? No one has ever seemed that concerned about spreading false information in this system.

Maybe from this point forward, things should only be posted about "family and friends" when the person posting is sure of it's accuracy. Go the extra step and make a call to double check the information.

I've even heard the rumor about Felicia Mitchell and Bob Moseley, and I'm far removed from DCSS these days ... so people aren't getting informed BY this blog. It's nice that this rumor was finally corrected.

Rumors swirl, especially when there are a lot of improprieties going on at the top. Unless we are all wrong about that, too.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Felicia Mitchell MAYFIELD??

There was a secretary at Dunaire Elem that was reassigned somewhere in the system with the last name of Mayfield. Any relation?

Also does Felicia's new husband work for DCSS, or does his company do business with DCSS? I think we need to look at that, too, for obvious reasons.

So, don't forget to add "friends" to our list ...

Cerebration said...

But then again, it could be the ice cream people ...

Now - come on people - just the facts, please.

Anonymous said...

Yes, the blog thread is a bit unseemly.

But the point is that in DCSS, nepotism and cronyism is OUT OF CONTROL.

Yes, it exists in most organizations and businesses, but if y'all speak to any past DCSS administrator or staff member, he/she will tell story after story on how someone has landed a DCSS administrator or staff position not because of competence and experience, but because of family ties, personal friendships, sorority/fraternity affiliation, etc.

Don't kid yourself: It's really, really bad at DCSS, and it's a big part of the reason why the school system is in the mess that it's in now. Principals are placed in very important admin positions in which they have no prior experience. Family members like Philandra Guillory are in charge of very important divisions, like DCSS TV, despite having no experience and despite having incredible local talent available with CNN. This is a big part of the reason why the budget is out of control. We not only pay millions for more administrators than we need, we also pay millions more for their inflated salaries, as proven by a DCSS issued audit. Not only do too many administrators with inflated salaries take away from the classroom, we also pay a ton for their benefits and retirement. BLOAT, BLOAT and more BLOAT!

The BOE has not only allowed nepotism and cronyism, it's a big part of the problem. That's you Zepora and Sarah C-W.

DCSS should be hiring the best and the brightest from inside and outside the system. One of the reasons why Crawford Lewis rose up from a HPE teachers to super is his manipulation of favors, friends, church membership, etc.

It has to stop. Now.

Anonymous said...

Meow is right! We must take back OUR school system! This is taxpayer money they are wasting.

Regarding Philandra Guilroy, she is being paidover 35K more than the average Production Manager at a local Atlanta TV Station. PDS 24 is cable access for goodness sakes. This channel is a huge waste, except for the televised school board meetings. To be paid 110K for this job is a waste of OUR tax dollars.

Mr. Mooooseley is/was dating Dr Alice Thompson, I know this for a fact! Their fun started as they were working together on the original re-districting process, which was a sham from the beginning, using the fraudulent demographers report which was a cut and paste from Fairfax, VA.

Folks, this might be uncomfortable but when you work for a public government entity, using tax payer dollars, over a billion a year, it's time we review every employee!

We must continue this to take back our system. Until someone gets hurt no one will listen. The BOE is hoping this whole mess gets sucked down the memory hole. However, the last commenter who mentioned what is being said about DeKalb County schools, around the country, being a system that tolerates cheating, must be stopped.

Tyson, Mitchell/Mayfield, any Guilroy, Edwards, Moseley, Thompson, Turk, Ramsey, and others must be asked to resign or be fired. As long as Clew-less' cabinet remains NOTHING IS GOING TO CHANGE! I am sure there are documents that are being destroyed daily by Clew-less' mob cabinet. As long as they have their jobs who can we trust?

Is there anyone out there listening to our frustrations?

Anonymous said...

I think people are listening but for the most part are unwilling to do the dirty work and come out from behind "Anonymous" ... myself included.

We "anonymous" people must be willing to come out in droves and droves to every board meeting ... we could even wear t-shirts with the words "anonymous" on them (ok, I'm getting carried away), but the point is ... at the last board meeting only 1/4 (if that) of the chairs were filled.

There is much disgust, but even more apathy ... the Board and the Corrupt Ones are counting on this apathy.

Bloggers out there, are WE collectively willing to do something "over the top" to get their attention? All we really really need RIGHT NOW is 5 new board members with fresh eyes and a fair mind, along with a superintendent like we read about in Kansas ... then our desire to "clean house" will happen. Pronto.

So, our first order of business is to get the right leaders to RUN FOR OFFICE, and then one of them can call that Kansas superintendent and get some MUCH NEEDED advice.

ALL EMPLOYEES AT MANAGEMENT LEVEL WHO STOOD BY SILENTLY AND WATCHED THE SYSTEM GO DOWN THE DRAIN NEEDS TO GO. They won't go on their own ... it will have to be a clean sweep. The people just mentioned in the last blog ... THE PEOPLE WHOSE NAMES KEEP COMING UP AGAIN AND AGAIN MUST GO. They have ridden this gravy train long enough.

But, for the time being, they will ride it as long as they can, as long as no one does anything except talk. And, yes, as we blog ... evidence is being destroyed right and left. You can bet on that.

OK, I'm done.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:49 PM said:
"So how about a format that looks like the below....

Person, title, relative/friend (description of who that person is), salary (if known)

Philandra Guillory, Oversees DCSS 24 (title) Mother is Frances Edwards (former DCSS Board Member), $100K+
Please add in parentheses who the relative or friend is.."

Excellent suggestion-
If done this way it will merit more professional consideration from the BOE and others, I think.
As the list forms, it will be obvious that many are in high positions and are overly paid for these jobs. It will be easier to turn this over to someone for review.
Then they can ask- do you possess the qualifications for this job?

If this thread sounds like random paragraphs of gossip, we will receive less credibility for our information. No one will want to sift through it to glean the facts.

Anonymous said...

At the recent BOE led by Roberts, Redovian said he was asking a question on behalf of a constituent. He asked Tyson for a list of administrators' children and the schools they attend.

Is there a way of forming a question and finding out any employee who is related to another current or former employee or BOE member. Probably too hard to get the truth this way???
A notarized document would be great!

We ask parents to list other siblings on the registration form.
Why shouldn't employees be asked to list other relatives (and their postions)who are/were DCSS BOE members or employees.
Just a thought.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...


What about setting up an Excel spreadsheet columned with just the facts desired, locked, and available to be downloaded from the blog? This way individuals can download the spreadsheet, input information, and return it to you for cut-and-paste to a master spreadsheet for view on the blog. I realize this would require work on your part (or a trusted blogger), but it would eliminate all of the extraneous information. Additionally, you could also add a column for rumors for tracking purposes that could be hidden when posted for public view.

Just a thought...

Paula Caldarella said...

we all now know that perhaps a certain high level female could have possibly been promoted due to her tight relationship with the big boss (you know, the one with the Pcard issue).

But, Cere, we don't know that. That is a rumor. I'm afraid you are letting yourself in for a lawsuit if names and accusations are posted on this board. Just remember, just because you post as "anonymous" does not mean you cannot be found out - you can. Cere, if you let this particular topic continue, please protect yourself.

Anonymous said...

Dunwoody Mom, is this a threat? If yes, then this whole blog will shut down and we can go back to business as usual.

Anonymous said...

My understanding that the issue woth Frankie Callaway's children working for DCSS is that the young lady was given a position in Prevention/Ind for which she was not qualified and that her son was promoted to Ass't Prin within weeks of earning his masters, over many other candidates who have been trying for years to move up to Administration. It helps that mama was way high up in Dekalb.

Anonymous said...

The lady with Dr. Lewis in the Bahamas or Ritz Carlton or wherever it was regarding the misuse of the PCard was in the NEWS (that's the ONLY way we all on the "outside" found out about that) ... should the news reporter people be afraid that they are reporting incorrect information? Should they protect themselves, or are they allowed to report possibly false information?

Paula Caldarella said...

I'm not threatening. I am just pointing out that bloggers are not exempt from lawsuits. So, if certain posters are going to post items that are not true and it manages to harm someone's reputation they are not protected by "anonymous".

Paula Caldarella said...


Dekalbparent said...

There have been several good suggestions/comments. I think some sort of chart or spreadsheet that we can add to that carries just facts - I think Anon 4:49 pm had a good format. Perhaps a comment column for relevant things that are a verifiable fact, like a person who was promoted to an IT technical position with no technical training, or a person who became an AP with 2 years in the classroom.

We could use Google Docs (I asked my wonderful student for a suggestion, so I don't know all the ins and outs, but I will find out)and post a spreadsheet. It can be set up with varying levels of edit permissions, so we could have it so anyone could post, but only some people can edit - like trusted moderators could go through and delete things that clearly don't belong. If there is not a space in the spreadsheet for rumor and gossip, it can't be put in there. Well, it could, but it wouldn't stay...

There is a place for the "stuff people know" and whistleblower information, but for the sake of fact-gathering, we need to have the spreadsheet have just facts. Hopefully ones that speak for themselves.

My biggest concern is credibility. We know the BOE doesn't want to hear anything we say (they're part of the problem, after all), and media may be interested, but they're not going to get near anything that smells of innuendo rather than fact. Never mind the libel issue. I want us to make a difference, and keeping our credibility is essential.

Paula Caldarella said...

I want us to make a difference, and keeping our credibility is essential.


Anonymous said...

DeKalb County DA Gwen Keyes publicly stated that then Supt. and very married Crawford Lewis was in the Bahamas and Ritz Carlton Reynolds Plantation with female DCSS staff members.

Those staff members present with him were part of criminal fruad and should resign. it's conjecture whether Dr. Audria Berry was the staff member with Lewis in the Bahamas. No one can make those female staff members resign except for the Board of Education. Yes, if they had any personal and professional ethics they would resign, but that is for the Board of Education to handle.

Of course, any DCSS Central Office staff member who was part of the reimbursement process for the Crawford Lewis trips should also resign. Professional and personal ethics are in short supply at the DCSS Central Office and BOE.

Be True to Your School said...

RE: Morcease Beasley

It is a 10 hour drive between Port Arthur, TX and Birmingham, AL where Samford University is located. Right around 600 miles. I looked all over the Samford website and could not find anything about online graduate degrees. There are some online courses, but no graduate online courses.

Given the prevalence of people completely unsuited for the jobs they hold at DCSS, "Dr." Beasley is going to have to publish his transcript and his actual graduate degree before I am satisfied that he is who he says he is.

Anonymous said...

I have worked under Dr. Beasley for a year, and I can assure you that he knows his stuff. He will be a remarkable change from what was there! Just because someone has a degree from a less-known college than, say, Harvard, hardly means they are worthless. Dr. Beasley is a diligent worker and strives to deliver. He wants (and expects) those he supervises to make every effort to do their utmost on behalf of the children. I look forward to seeing what he does at his new level. Give him a chance. It could have been much, much worse. Angela Pringle! Oh, God!

Anonymous said...

Personally, I never even thought about Crawford Lewis having any inappropriate relationships until I read the indictment that alleges these relationships. I must admit I was shocked. If the charges are true (i.e. he is found guilty by a jury of his peers), then all parties should be held accountable. No women are mentioned so I could not even guess to whom the D.A. is referring.

I think it's bad enough that we have 8,500 admin and support personnel to 6,800 teachers. Those numbers are not solely the result of the friends and family of the top level administrators. Rather, this situation is the result of an unbelievably inept administration with little classroom experience using taxpayer dollars to fund any and all departments and programs that would justify their existence. This BOE just plain didn't care, and some probably had some vested interest in Lewis as the superintendent.

I called Hank Johnson today to ask him to vote for the federal government funding the salaries of educators being laid off. I told him I only supported this if the jobs of "personnel who teach in the classroom" are saved. I did not want him to vote for more supervisor jobs being saved.

Teaching at a DCSS High School said...

To Dunwoody Mom , and others...

While I agree that "credibility is essential", I believe that FOCUS should be Primary in obtaining or disseminating information for this blog. The friends and family issue is an intriguing topic, worthy of concern, but what do we really hope to achieve by KNOWING who's related to whom? What about these FOCUS questions?....

What is the vision of DCSS?(where do we go from here?)

What specifically does the BoE intend to DO (actions not just words) in cleaning house and staffing schools and facilities with appropriate personnel?

What is the BoE and DCSS strategy for quickly completing current contruction projects and correcting the problems that exist?

What is the status of the search for a REAL superintendent of DCSS?

What is the employment status of those employees who were given "pink slips" yet told they could reapply for their jobs, Huh????

Will America's Choice be around next year to waste more money and time for DCSS stakeholders?

How can parent involvement be increased to become an effective, POSITIVE, voice in DCSS?

......There are many other questions that I would really like to have answers to. It's not that I don't believe nepotism, cronyism, and all the other "isms" have populated our system with some employees who are incompetent. Sure, some got to where they are by "favored" appointments and recommendations from close relatives and relations.

But, when I stand before my students in August.....when I have my first parent conferences in September.....when an administrator does my evaluation, perhaps in October.....not a single one of them will ask me whom I am related to. They won't care.

They will only want to know that I AM DOING MY JOB AND DOING IT WELL!!!(no, I am not related to anyone)


Dekalbparent said...

Samford offers nine graduate education degrees. I cannot say anything about them except that they are offered.


I went to Dr. Beasley"s website, and he does seem to be a busy and ambitious gentleman...


Anonymous said...

Dunwoody Mom and others.....the problem is too much personal life is taking precedence over the needs and priorities of the schools. This IMO has created the firestorm we have now...It starts with a little on the side then blackmail leads to misappropriation of funds and here we are today June 15, 2010 without a Superintendent and COO....go figure. Yes there is plenty of dating going on...I have no problem with it UNLESS.....IT CREATES A CONFLICT OF INTEREST.....in which most of these individuals listed on this page have. This is when it begins to be a problem. I don't care for slander and yes persons should be cautious of putting up rumors and stick with the facts. But too many women/men are sleeping their way and are born into positions. This is why DCSS is running substandard as we speak or blog....JMO..I felt this needed to be said...so please let's not be so morally high that we fail to see the purpose in this section of the blog....I can see the purpose and ignore the gossip...trust me we who work in the main offices know exactly what's going on and have known for years. And it is annoying because soe of us believe in educating ourselves and working hard to get the job we have without a family or friend in DCSS...even if we never get a promotion. The job requires that we support and that's what we must do.

Mary Kay Woodworth said...

Not to change the subject, but FYI Brad Bryant (former DCSS BOE chair) will be sworn in tomorrow as interim Georgia School Superintendent. 10 am at the Capitol. Wish he was DCSS super.

See Maureen Downey's blog: http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2010/06/15/its-official-brad-bryant-will-be-sworn-in-wednesday-morning-at-10/?cxntfid=blogs_get_schooled_blog

Kim Gokce said...

we could start a family tree on ancestry.com. Our system org chart sounds more like a consanguinity chart ...

Cerebration said...

Kim - I had to look that word up!

I'm happy that you are looking out for my well-being DM - but two things:

The fact that a "female subordinate" visited the Ritz Carlton with Dr Lewis and "no school system work was conducted" yet Lewis charged the room to his PCard - came directly from the DA - so if it's slanderous, I guess I'm in good company.

Two - I don't have anything worth suing me for, believe me.

All that said, I think that this little exercise has been very interesting - and surprisingly a bit scary far a lot of you. I find that fascinating - you are afraid to call out people on their behaviors and their relationships to higher admins - which sadly, only gives them the power over you that they seek. Insightful.

One more item - I'm not going to create a spreadsheet. If anyone would like to do that - feel free. If you do, send me an email address and I will tell people to send their info to you to be added to the worksheet.

So - for now - add a few more factual items regarding relationships and then we'll close it for comments - as it seems that we have decided that we basically don't have the stomach for this conversation.

fed up teacher said...

Frankie Calloway also hooked up her son's best friend Mark Byrant to be an assistant principal. he barely taught for 4 years if that! he's at Bouie Theme School where Calloway was the special ed para at first before finally teaching for a hot minute and is now an assistant principal at Wynnbrooke. Another theme school. I think Dekalb should raise the number of years to be an Assistant Principal to 7. right now it is just 3 years in the classroom and poof you are an AP!! Yet we have more highly qualified educators with experience over 10 years can't get a job as an AP because they don't know the right people. If they hire people on what they know and not who they know, Dekalb would be the best school system in Georgia. Who wants to take orders from some wet-behind the ears AP barely in his 30's? I am not saying AP's can't be in their 30's but.... I know for a fact Calloway Jr. was bragging about how he was going to be an Assistant Principal soon and was still working on his master's at the time in that DELTA co hort yet had parents complaining about him not going to his designated classes for special ed. and now he is an AP??? I don't know his performance of being an AP but.....

Anonymous said...

@ Mary Kay
I am not excited about the governor appointing Bryant as interim Superintendent and then having him run for State Superintendent as an Independent.

I also have interacted with Bryant for many years and I think he has really changed since he has been on the State Board. My personal observation is that he has become very dismissive of teachers and parents. He has pushed the new high school math curriculum as hard as Cox. And when parents questioned both the curriculum and the cost, speed and method of implementation he was down right condescending and insulting to parents and teachers.

Be True to Your School said...

@ Anonymous 7:59 PM

Did I say that a degree from a lesser-known school is worthless?

I did not. So, why would you make a comment like that as if I had? Thank you. Apology accepted!

I am familiar with Samford University and I think it is a fine Baptist school.

However, what I read about "Dr." Beasley earlier said that he had gotten his Ed.D. while working for Johnny Brown in Port Arthur, TX. It is a 10-hour, 600-mile drive from Port Arthur, TX to Birmingham, AL where Samford is located.

Samford does not appear to offer graduate degrees online -- although Samford does offer some non-graduate courses online. Further, on "Dr." Beasley's highly promotional website there is no date when "Dr." Beasley received his Ed.D. There is no indication of the topic of his thesis or what academic library it resides in.

"Dr." Beasley seems to be in the sales business: self-published book sales. Haven't we had enough of that?

Beasley quotes a John Maxwell in an excerpt of his (Beasley's) book. He seems quite taken with Maxwell.

Reviewing one of Maxwell's 30+ books, the Library Journal Review says Maxwell is "one of the many well-known leadership coaches who have built a franchise around mass distribution of advice on how to succeed in business and life."

Maxwell is published by Thomas Nelson, a Christian publisher. What I have read so far sounds eerily familiar -- think New Birth Missionary Baptist Church. Maxwell's thinking seems to have a great deal of influence over Beasley. Haven't we had enough of that?

I am especially concerned about the fact that Morcease Beasley may be a disciple of Johnny Brown. He seems to have follow him everywhere just like a puppy dog.

Finally, I located Beasley's 8-page vita. (Not on his self-promotional website, though.) Still no mention of the topic of his dissertation. Plus, the years don't seem to line up with what he says he did. Frankly, he seems very flighty -- not at all focused.

Typically, the DCSS BOE followed their usual process: Ready, Fire, Aim!

Anonymous said...

It appears that some bloggers are not familiar with a Ph.D. versus an Ed.D. There is a particular university where most DCSS employees obtained their doctorate degrees. These were Ed.Ds. which reportedly required only one or no statistics classes which are mandatory for the majority of Ph.D programs. It is hard to understand how their quantitative dissertations were defended with little to no knowledge of statistics. Also, how are these administrators able to interpret data? There are universities however, that have very credible Ed.D. programs so the question is, why do so many DCSS employees with ED.Ds attend this particular university?

Anonymous said...

All the friends and family hired sure makes a mockery of the Board saying they cannot get involved in hiring.
Makes you wonder how much they messed with school house assignments as well.

Anonymous said...

Getting back to Charlie Henderson. He needs to be investigated about missing and expensive atheletic equipment that was sent to Open Campus, with no gym. Did the equipment disappear?

Please, Ronald Ramsey must go!

Also, I am a former employee, and don't mind revealing who I am. How do I join the Edudekalb?

Anonymous said...

Dr. Beasley completed his doctorate course work while he was a principal at Stephenson. When he left to go Texas he only had to complete his research. I taught at Stephenson at that time.

Anonymous said...

See how students rated Morcease Beasley:

Cerebration said...

For info on eduKALB go to their website -


Anonymous said...


You implied worthlessness and now you imply that a postsecondary institution with a religious affiliation is suspect, too. You can check out Beasley's certification records on-line quite easily at the Georgia Certification Channel. Type in his name. See when his certificates were issued. I have no problem with someone who has a religious background (Beasley is also a minister) being in education, just as long as they do not allow their religious beliefs to permeate their administration of the school. While Beasley certainly let his beliefs be known, he never (in this past year that I worked at his school) negatively affected a soul because of religion or spirituality. In fact, one of his favorite staff members is probably not a heterosexual, and this did not interfere in Beasley's ability to worth with the individual for the good of the children.

I said before, and I say again, there is much worth to Beasley. He means very well and has substance. He understands curriculum and instruction and the everyday running of a school. Am I glad he is no longer principal? YES. Why? Because he is incredibly intense. He has an almost manic drive to accomplish great things; however, he realizes he cannot accomplish them on his own. So, he makes every effort to have his personnel strive with him. If he perceives that you are making a worthwhile, honest effort, he will support you. If he perceives that you are slack and not making an effort to instruct the children, he will try to change you for the better. If the change does not work, he will try to rid the school of you. Do I agree with all of his methods? No. Do I agree with all of his mandates? No. Do I agree with all of his personnel choices? No. Do I believe he has areas that he could improve in? Yes. (Don't we all?) Do I think he made me become a better teacher? Yes. Why? He caused me to rethink what I was doing in the classroom and to adopt some new methodologies that at first I was quite resistant to try. Out of fear of his reaction, I tried them and found that there was worth to what he wanted. I have no doubt he will make a positive contribution to the school system at the County level.

Quit trying to damage the man before he starts in the position. Give him a chance. I bet you will be pleasantly surprised at his professionalism and the level of his competence.

Anonymous said...

From his website:

"Dr. Beasley is committed to ensuring phenomenal school improvement in Port Arthur Independent School District."

Ain't committed enough not to jump ship back to DeKalb!

"Dr. Morcease J. Beasley offers services in Improving Instruction, Leadership Development, Program Evaluation and Research, Instructional Management Audits, Dissertation Writing, Dissertation Editing, and Statistical Analysis for Dissertations."

With all his offerings of service, how does Beasley have time to be the head of instruction for the third largest school system in Georgia??? Dude, focus on our students, not making money on the side offering at least seven services for sale.

Anonymous said...

Vickie Durbin worked in several areas of the system,lynn cherry grant former board member sister. Johnthan Rosser one of charlie Henderson son-in law's warehouse super over night. Andrea Brown-Lewis college classmate. She is admin-assistant only been with the system about two years. Lay-off bet not. Tiffany knowlin-pat pope's girlfriend daughter came in as admin assistant to pope and now a super in the warehouse.

I am not sure but there are three people under the name ramsey are they related?

Anonymous said...

Once you retire as an educator in the State of Georgia it is not illegal to return and work as an educator. There are some restrictions, but it is not illegal. It is not double dipping. There are retired military people that work for the school system. There are many retired public school system people who now work for the State Department of Education. Many of those people retired from the DCSS. Go view the State Department of Education web site. You will see many former DCSS people. There is a former DCSS high school principal who has worked in a neighboring county for years. This individual I think was once the principal of Tucker.
The principal of Lakeside retired from the DCSS. He is bright and loves that school. Just because someone is related to a person does not mean that this person is not capable.
At time this blog provides so much good information. I am not sure the purpose of this topic. At a time that that we need healing in our schools, this does not seem to promote that.
I am not related to anyone in the system.

Paula Caldarella said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paula Caldarella said...

The fact that a "female subordinate" visited the Ritz Carlton with Dr Lewis and "no school system work was conducted" yet Lewis charged the room to his PCard - came directly from the DA - so if it's slanderous, I guess I'm in good company.

That's not what I an referring to. I am referring to people posting actual names and charges/insinuation as if they were a fact. If you want this to be an open forum, it's your blog, your choice. Me, I think it's a dangerous place to go on an open forum.

Paula Caldarella said...

Cronyism, nepotism, promotions for unqualified people over qualified people - yes, these, in and of themselves, are distasteful and wrong and the BOE needs to put a stop to it. However, they are not illegal. This thread really should be about criminal activities, which is a poster knows of any, should be communicated to the DA's office.

Anonymous said...

Well said again, Dunwoody Mom! Thanks also for the link regarding online defamation.

Anonymous said...


Starting with the BOE and the HEAD of every department ... they should be asked (required) to pretty please publicly list family members who work for DCSS, as well as friends who got their jobs because of their connection with them.

If these friends/family are competent, then no problem. Networking and getting a foot in the door because of who you know is absolutely fine ... it's what you do and how you perform WHEN you get there that counts, AND do you become "untouchable" because of that connection? This is what needs to be examined.

So how do we get that list? It's a GREAT start. If everything IS above board, then all we should have to do is ask.

That would certainly clear up the "friends/family" rumors ... get the information straight from the source is always the best route.

So, BOE and Department Heads, we're asking. Thank you for hopefully agreeing to become "transparent" because you have nothing to hide.

That would clear up that distraction so we can focus on the kids.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the above request should be sent to the BoE ... isn't there a way to send them letters from this blog?

Anonymous said...

Michelle Jones, AP at Chamblee HS, mom is Felicia Mitchell/Mayfield. Everyone thinks (hopes soon) she's being groomed for principal.

She's a sharp administrator, doesn't ever play the friends/family card. She never mentions her "connection." She's there by her own merit and works hard.

An example where friends/family actually doesn't make a difference.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Felicia,

Loved your post about your daughter.


Yes, there is absolutely not one shred of truth to the fact that Michelle Jones owes any of her promotion to her relationship to mom or, , Bob Mosley. OH, no. It's all based on merit because Michelle is so wonderful, displays such professionality, and wasn't groomed to rise from the high school from which she graduated. Oh, no.

Anonymous said...

@ A Great Idea Came to Mind

Super idea! It should be a single request, don't you think? With a deadline to respond. Maybe from Cere on behalf of the entire DeKalb County School Watch blogosphere?

@ Anonymous 1:23 PM

The BOE? The DCSS BOE? You're kidding, right? They don't know anything about who is working where, when or why!

Anonymous said...


"Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope... and, crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance."
~Robert F. Kennedy

Anonymous said...

There is nepotism and cronyism everywhere, but it's functioning at warp speed at DCSS. You don't move up with being related to an administrator (or BOE member), friends of one, or a sorority sister/fraternity brother of one.

To think that Jamal Edwards was actually promoted within MIS after not being seen at his school where he was the CTSS for six months is all that needs to be said.

Be True to Your School said...

A Open Request to Dr. Morcease Beasley:

Dr. Beasley,

Please publish a copy of your Ed.D. transcript (showing graduation date and degree award date) AND a copy of your dissertation.

Let me assure you that this request is not meant to be intrusive.

However, given all of the issues in the DeKalb County School System and with the DCSS Board of Education, all BOE candidates, as well as all DCSS upper administration, should be prepared to provide public documentation of their skills, experience and education. If all is in order, that should be no problem.

Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Zepora Roberts daughter:
Chanda Roberts White, or Chandra L White, 2009 "Family Services Coor $56895.57"

Anonymous said...

This one is definitely for the "Friends" category -- not sure if it is "Family" too because that would make it real, real messy and I don't want to speculate.

Zepora Roberts must have a good "Friend" in administrative assistant Darlene Chatman who donated $1500 to her re-election campaign.

I'm surprised that an administrative assistant would have such deep interest in the outcome of a school board race. In fact Ms. Chatman was one of, if not the largest contributor to Mrs. Roberts ever.

I'm even more curious of who she's related too and who the company she worked for in October 1996 was which Zepora Roberts listed on her Campaign Disclosure Report as only "AVPA & Assocs".

Is AVP & Assocs really A. Vincent Pope & Associates? Certainly if it was Mrs. Roberts would have listed it as such, wouldn't she? Hummm wasn't this at the same time some of the alleged corruption was going on? Hummm....

Here's a link so DM doesn't get me for rumors. :)

Anonymous said...

This brings up a wider way of looking at the "Friends & Family" issue.

How many in decision-making capacities at DCSS have family members employed at places DCSS awards business?

While I'm not aware of any illegalities here, it seems that one could be swayed to place business with Company A if their child was employed, perhaps at a significant salary there.

Anonymous said...

Check this out: S.Amey - principal at Columbia Middle School- niece of Z. Roberts.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 4:52 pm

What a great site. You can click on the first letter of the last name of any BOE member, candidate, etc. and then download pdf files that detail who contributed to each person's campaign, how much they contributed and who they work for:


Anonymous said...

thorpe, principal at shamrock ms, brother to AP watson at PCMS, with another sister as counselor in DCSSS

Anonymous said...

Alex Russell, admin in HR has a sister who is a CTSS at PCMS, and others are related too, I believe

Anonymous said...

We really need to be getting a lot from our Special Ed teachers. After all, they are pushing DCSS class sizes up by about 8 students per classroom. In other words, every classroom of 32 could be a classroom of 24.

DCSS has approximately 4,000 content and grade level teachers (out of 15,000+ employees).

We have 1,369 Special Ed teachers. If each one of those teachers were available to teach a regular education class of 24 students, this equals 32,856 regular ed students served or 32,856/4,000 teachers = 8 students more for each regular ed teacher.

I'm not saying do away with special education. I'm just saying that if you ask regular ed teachers to have 32 every period in their classrooms rather than 24 those special ed teachers need to be doing something extraordinary for these students.

A special education student in a classroom of 24 has a very different experience than a special education student in a classroom of 32.

Anonymous said...

Re Anonymous 7:15 pm
Posted to the wrong article.

Anonymous said...

Things that make you go: "Hummmmm?"
Zeporah R. "Aug 2006" Dr. Johnny Browne - $5oo contribution to ZR's election campaign.............

A Mother said...

This topic is a Great idea!

It is important that this information be made available to the public. These are just the facts. This lets us know that the person holding a certain position is related to others employed by DCSS and in what way.

It's a common question on job applications to be "dog catcher". If you have 6 cousins and your best friend already working for the organization, it's just information that needs to be known to all concerned and put on the table.

It should not offend anyone in these positions to have this information made available to parents and taxpayers unless they have something to hide. If one is doing a great job, being related to others that work for DCSS isn’t going to change that. If one has a job they never would have gotten except for that connection, there could be cause to be upset by these connections being made public.

Capable adults can decide if they are satisfied with the service they and the children receive, in spite of ones relationship to another. It is important that the stated relationship be accurate. Having the connection revealed here is not to say they are or are not doing their jobs. Some may have grave cause for concern. We and they know who they are.

Still, we have a right to this information, as information.

Anonymous said...

Interesting that Columbia HS principal is related to Zepora BECAUSE ...

Today, I read in this blog somewhere that the Columbia HS principal position is open BECAUSE THE CURRENT PRINCIPAL (the niece to Zepora??) IS BEING PROMOTED.

Not sure where I saw this ... I saw a list of principal openings. Please someone confirm.

Yep, interesting ....

Anonymous said...

Oooops ... ignore the post above. I saw HS instead of MS. I stand corrected. Sorry ...

Anonymous said...

GREAT IDEA suggests we send a message/email to the BOE from this blog site asking for each to:

1. Post their own credentials as to why they should be re-elected.

2. Post a list of what family members (and friends would be nice too) work for DCSS. We also want to know vendors they feel "obligated" because of friends/family to do business with, but we'll never get that info unless we accidently stumble upon it.

3. Why Morcease Beasley? And who else was interviewed for this very important job?

Will you do this, Cere, from all of us bloggers?

Anonymous said...

Why Mr. Swanson (AP at Redan) for Dunwoody HS principal? Were others interviewed? Did they already have him in mind for the job? Is that the proper protocol? It doesn't seem like they have had time to interview sufficiently for the principal of Dunwoody HS? Is there any AP in house at Dunwoody that could do the job? That would make a lot more sense.

What say you, Dunwoody Parents?

Anonymous said...

Can someone share the info you had on principal openings? Seems like there isn't enough time to choose or get community input?

Anonymous said...

I think there are 2 Hearns (one principal Indian Creek) and one in Plant Services related.

Anonymous said...

Got this information from this blog so I looked him up ... IF the blog is correct, they've already decided (in a hot minute) to make this man principal of Dunwoody HS ... he's currently the AP at Redan HS. Here's his bio:

Rodney F. Swanson, son of Charles and Mary Swanson is a graduate of Frederick Douglass High School (1985) in Atlanta. He is also a graduate of The University of Georgia (1989) with a degree in marketing, and Jacksonville State University (2001) with a degree in Educational Leadership. He has taught over 1,500 students in his 17 year career. He was named teacher of the year in 2002. Mr. Swanson is also a graduate of the DeKalb County Leadership program (2003). Mr. Swanson is married to the lovely Michelle Swanson and has two wonderful children, Jordan and Joshua. Mr. Swanson enjoys reading, sports, family activities, and music.

Anonymous said...

As one blogger said, many people in many places of employment use family and friends to get interviews and/or jobs. With jobs being as limited as they currently are, this will probably increase in this real world. The negative about this is when the least qualified is employed over someone who is more qualified. Is it true that there are two departments,that have non-teaching positions, which are fertile grounds for family and friends? Reportedly the basic requirement is a Bachelors degree and the salaries are far greater than experienced teachers with Masters and Masters level Social Workers. Starting pay is in the high 40s in one department and mid 50s in another. Why are these salaries so high when the responsibilities are not commensurate with the teachers' tremendous responsibilities and educational requirements? Is it true that there are many current very qualified DCSS employees who applied for these positions but could not even get an interview? Yet, reportedly some were filled by secretaries and others with no previous social services experience. When this happens, the end result often is that the populations that should be served are not served appropriately, irregardless of what is reported on paper to the funding source.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Mr. Swanson is a wonderful API at Redan. He is very knowledgeable about matters relating to instruction. Most importantly he is very even-tempered and was well liked by the staff, parents and most importantly the students. I think Mr. Swanson would be a perfect fit for Dunwoody. Consider it an early Christmas gift.

Anonymous said...

Anon, 10:01: cannot find the principal opening list. ALL openings are suppose to be posted on PATS. www.pats.dekalb.k12.ga.us

Anonymous said...

Well,well. It is impossible for a common person without any connections to the Friends and Family Plan to even stand a chance of getting a job in the county. The Edwards and Calloways have all of the jobs. Even though they are not qualified. The daughter of the the Calloways cannot pass the Gace Exam but was put in a position that she didnot deserve. The son likes to brag about his mothers powers. So, once school opens, we guess he will be a principal somewhere in the system.
Yvonne Butler was promoted to a well director and has connections throughout the county and connections. Shannon Williams, former assistant left her position as a well director because Crawford hired Y.Butler, a friend of the family plan who has no real experience as a principal and no expert on sugar to oversee a health program. Does anyone know how much she makes? This lady has no degree(s) in the area of health.

Anonymous said...

Who is Ronald Ramsey related to? This man has a lot to repent for. He has terminated so many innocent people. But, the ones that need to be investigated in the county office who he sees every day, are left to rack up in the money department. Time will tell who he is related to. Or, should we say, what organization? (Greek)

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous, 10:29 PM

RE: Yvonne Sanders Butler

As a principal in FY 2009, Butler's salary was $112,956.[http://www.open.georgia.gov/sta/viewMain.aud]menet

Butler's certification level is 7 and all 3 of her certifications expire on 6/30/2011. She holds certification in Early Childhood Education, P-5; Educational Leadership, P-12; and School Counseling, P-12. [http://www.gapsc.com/Certification/Lookup/look_up.aspx]

Anonymous said...

Anon, 10:01, just found it. Here it is:

Here are the principal positions I've heard are open:

Cedar Grove HS (retirement)
Columbia HS (promotion)
Towers HS (retirement)
Clarkston HS (?)
Dunwoody HS (demotion)
Miller Grove HS (demotion)
Lithonia MS (retirement)
Columbia ES (retirement)

Anonymous said...

We keep hearing SO many really really bad things about two career/two full time jobs, GA State Senator and DCSS Internal Affairs Head ... does anyone, anyone at all, have anything nice to say about this man? Does he have ANY redeeming qualities?

BOE, or whoever he reports to, ARE YOU LISTENING?

It appears literally NO ONE wants him around. His name comes up almost as much as CLew and Pope.

Anonymous said...

It bears repeating, Anon 11:06:
Who is Ronald Ramsey related to? This man has a lot to repent for. He has terminated so many innocent people. But, the ones that need to be investigated in the county office who he sees every day, are left to rack up in the money department. Time will tell who he is related to. Or, should we say, what organization? (Greek)

Anon said...

Wow, I think that is half the high schools (or just about).

At the elementary level, I have heard Oak Grove and Skyhaven, both retirements...

Here is the scary thing, my understanding is that DCSS won't be hiring from the outside. Let me say, that for principals they have hardly hired from the outside in years. Let me also add, that no one in their right mind would want to come work for DCSS right now.

That said, though, there are some very low performing schools that need principals. Maybe someone out there can offer new ideas and proven results. But we will never know, because we aren't hiring outside of DCSS!

Anon said...

Opps missed read the list, still it is a third of the high schools and that is just is what we have heard.

Be True to your School said...

Ronald Ramsey has NO redeeming qualities. None whatsoever.

I keep thinking about what Martin Luther King, Jr. said about being judged by the content of one's character. The content of Ronald Ramsey's character is nonexistent. He is the kind of person that makes you feel like you need to take a bath after merely being in the same room with him.

I watched him, with the able assistance of top DCSS administrators, a high school principal, an area executive director, as well as folks in Finance and HR go after and actually frame a DCSS employee who they thought (we now believe) had inadvertently stumbled upon fraud in per-pupil funding. A DCSS BOE member was aware of what was happening and did nothing. (Is this vague enough for you, DM?)

And what about members of the DeKalb County delegation to the Georgia General Assembly -- Dan Weber, Mike Jacobs, Jill Chambers, and Fran Millar to name just a few? They had to know that Ramsey was double-dipping and being paid by DCSS for 40 days when he never showed up for work, but was at the Georgia General Assembly. Ramsey and Weber served on the same committee -- Education. Why did none of these people call him out?

How many other DCSS workdays did he miss as a do-nothing state senator? (Check his record, DM.)

Did Ramsey use a DCSS car? Does he have a p-card and did he use it for non-DCSS business? Doesn't it seem odd that he would list his occupation in his Senate bio as attorney ("Sen. Ramsey has a successful career as a federal government investigator and attorney.") and say nothing about his full-time employer, DCSS?

Everyone knew -- people in positions to do something about Ramsey -- and yet the Code of Silence is so strong, these people simply turned away.

Until I wrote this, I had been planning to vote for Fran Millar for state senator. Not now. I guess I had forgotten that Millar, too, was a Ramsey enabler.

Ronald Ramsey has NO redeeming qualities. None whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

Do we know how demoted pincipals wind back up in the school houses as AP's?

Anonymous said...

You really need to look at who goes to what church. One school has the majority of its faculty and staff attending the same church.

Do not forget about the frats and sorority.

Anonymous said...

So the fact that a demoted prinical could not control a school has absolutely nothing to do with it? Look at SWD. One guy could not run a high school.The other could not control a middle school. So our children have to suffer more, just so connected people can keep their jobs? Where are the controls? Where is the parent's influence?

Teaching at a DCSS High School said...

Okay let's see if I have this understood:

Acording to this thread and its posters, we want a public record of DCSS employees,their position(and previous demotions with reasons), current work location, their salary, their relationship to other employees(by blood or otherwise), their sorority/fraternity affiliation, their church affiliation, and any other information that we can use to .......what is it we're trying to do again???????

.......and whose going to update all of these dossiers?

......will electronic copies of all data be recorded on a secure server housed at an undisclosed location?

My summer will not become boring as long as DCSS creates news and this blog sheds light on the news. Who knew the internet could be so much fun ???


Anonymous said...

Think before you speak or blog or at least check to be sure you have all the facts. Some of the people listed here do not deserve the position they have or the salary they make while others go above and beyond. They have to because of the relationship they have with people who are or have been employeed by DCSS. Connections are a fact of life. The key is can the person do the job.

We all have friends and family the question is shouldn't they be judged on their own merit? Wouldn't you want the same for your friends and family? What if they were judged by the connection with you and your semi-factual bitter ANONYMOUS blog?????

Anonymous said...

Um, "think before you speak". Now that would be a novel approach for the DeKalb School leadership and School Board.

Cerebration said...

Anon is right. We do need to consider if people are qualified for the job they have been placed in, even if the placement was a result of a family connection. That said, board members are supposed to be totally transparent regarding the hiring of family members and these assignments should have been presented to the board and the community and approved with the knowledge of the association. There are plenty of highly qualified regular people who would love these jobs too. We need to ensure that proper interviewing procedures were followed and that the best candidate won the job.

Anonymous said...

Still do not understand going from principal to AP. Somebody can't do the one job, but they can do the other? In the military it is up or out. Why is it not the same here? That would take care of a lot of the administrative bloat. Connections are everywhere in life. Corruption is not.

A Mother said...

Anon 1:58

It is my opinion that any and all factual information should be posted without the judgement call of whether that person is doing their job or not and without the implication that being listed here necessarily means that at least one person is of the opinion that they are not doing their job.

I think the information will be more useful if it is just the statement of the fact of known relationships or connections. This should not be any big secret. It need not imply anything.

We can all draw our own conclusions about who is doing what in their positions. If you know someone has not shown up for 6 months and you know the connection, be it blood, marriage, friendship, organization, that is a fact. Time will bear that out.

I think the idea of this thread is the sharing of these facts.

Be True to Your School said...

Re: Comment from A Mother 2:29 PM

I completely agree! We are just looking for the facts.

No Duh said...

Sadly, even if we can vote the bums out, their legacy will live on through their friends and family (i.e. Frances Edwards has been gone a while).

I think the point of this exercise is to help our BOE members and whoever replaces Clew-less understand the pervasiveness of nepotism within our system. The problem is, these F&F employees now work in a system that does not appear to work like the average workplace -- where employees can be fired at will. SO, the BOE or the new superintendent can not start firing based on relationships -- and DCSS has proven time and again it is too chicken s**t to fire someone for incompetence ("Oh nooo, we could be sued, oh nooo." Thank you teachers' "associations.")

HOWEVER, the list is useful should we EVER get to a place where excellence is valued more than fear.

So, let's clean up the list. Avoid rumor, do your best. And, even if DCSS never does a thing with the list, perhaps we've created something that an AJC reporter could use as a jumping off point for a story about nepotism in DCSS (a reporter with some balls and persistence could ride this story -- and the total corruption in our system -- straight into a Pulitzer Prize, IMO).

No Duh said...

Rereading my post, I don't want anyone to think I was implying someone should be fired just because he or she is related to or friends with a BOE member or DCSS bigwig. I agree some of those hires probably are pretty good at their jobs (a shame other people weren't considered, but if DCSS is getting decent work out of them, so be it).

It's the using of OUR system as a job bank that is the problem.

Anonymous said...

As far as Principal vacancies are concerned, PATS has an External list and an Internal list. As such, some vacancies are listed externally and the others are listed internally. You only have access to the internal listings if you are a full-time employee only.

Cerebration said...

People say that family members often work at the same place of business, but really, in my experience that is rarely happening. I work as a consultant in many different kinds of businesses and I seldom come across people who are related to others in the company, unless it's a smaller, family-owned business. Hiring practices generally consist of finding the very best person for the job - as productivity and profit depend on it.

Anonymous said...

You would think this would be the case across the board now wouldn't you?

Anonymous said...

Do we know how demoted pincipals wind back up in the school houses as AP's?

June 18, 2010 9:25 AM

Well-here is my reponse. I know a very nice young man who was demoted and was placed in an AP job and they are glad to have him. This is where he now excells. He may hate me saying this, but not every great AP is cut out to be a principal. It's ok to remain an principal. There are many APs who have no desire to lead their own school. We do the same thing with teachers. I know many who could not cut it as maybe a 5th grade teacher but rather losing their job, they swap positions and maybe teach kindergarten or 1st grade and or they are even put in a classroom with a second teacher so they do not have to teach alone, then they end up being good at that grade level. Sometimes it takes a 2nd try and/or additional training to see where you can best serve. Now, if you are incompetent when assigned to an AP again, then that is an issue. I believe giving them some additional training because they need it before they are truly ready for a principalship is also possible. Especially in this case, where he ended up on the board member's hit list because he pissed off his her friend. That is the only reason he is an AP now. But he is in a good place and enjoying and excelling where he is now.

Anonymous said...

I just hope demoted positions receive demoted pay. It worries me that the pay will not match the job.

Anonymous said...

This is most definitely not the case. Also, ever notice that there are too many AP's?

A Mother said...

I agree with you there, Cere. It is rare to find a lot of interrelated and connected people all in the same workplace, in my experience.

I'm saying let's omit the implication that to name the situation, call it what it is, as far as we know would be the same as saying a particular person got their job because of their connections. We may not know that. We can very well know that a person holds a particular position AND they are related to former superintendent 6 different ways or whatever.

We can know that a count of the situations we know about comes to 3 or it comes to 3000 in the highest paying jobs in the county. That's not saying anything about anybody. The facts speak for themselves.

Some seem concerned about legal complications from what is said here. I don't know anything about that but it seems to me that the 1st amendment give me the right to say what is true, my opinion and then some. Also, more people may be willing to share what they know when it is a statement of facts and not adding someone's name to a certain kind of list. That may create the possibility of legal vulnerabilities that no one here needs to risk.

I think a straightforward list of what is, has more credibility and interest than one that implies that these are the people who got their jobs because of their connections and not their abilities.

Teaching at a DCSS High School said...

To anon @ 4:53....

"too many APs"......

Perhaps you need to visit a high school, esp. one with disciplinary issues, and take note of the number of students who linger after the bell sounds, walk the hallways continually, have dress code violations, curse up and down the hallways, and display an overall apathetic or belligerent attitude and then rethink the question of "too many".

In our school of over 1400 students, we have and need APs devoted solely to attendance, testing, instruction, and 9th grade discipline. These same 4 AP's share the disciplinary issues of the remainder of the student population while managing evaluations, sporting events, meeting with parents, county office meetings, hearings, SST's, teacher conferences, and a myriad of other activities for which they are responsible. They don't all do the job well, but they surely do have a lot of work to do.

....not enough security personnel or custodial staff either...

Anonymous said...

I am not related to anyone. I got my job cause I am just so darn cute! Also, I did not have sexual relations with that woman/man.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 6:17 pm

Well, it's almost like building more prisons rather than schools.

DCSS has invested in every employee under the sun except classroom and content area teachers. Every layer of administration and support has come at the expense of the classroom dynamic.

Title 1 fund decisions that IMO should be made at the school level by the school principal and the teachers in the Title 1 schools has been moved to the Central Office to pay for Central Office salaries, conferences, ineffective non-teaching coaches, expensive scripted and mind deadening programs like America's Choice, Springboard, and poor thought out student data programs like SchoolNet and it's integrated subprogram eSIS, etc.

Now we're reaping what was sowed. I've been in middle schools in south DeKalb where the APs stand in the hallways with bullhorns when classes are changing.
why don't we try investing in "educational" resources such as "teachers" and "science and technology equipment", etc. Bring the class sizes down, give the students a safe and clean environment, and let them have access to working and cutting edge science and technology equipment. Then maybe we wouldn't need to patrol our kids like they are on lockdown.

Anonymous said...

Not just the middle schools. The high schools as well. The total failure of the educational system in south Dekalb is the elephant in the room, because of the race issue that no one down here likes to address openly. There are tour books for foreigners now that mark south Dekalb as a "no-go" zone. Can't think of better confirmation of the Republican line than what goes on in south Dekalb. DCSS sure makes it easy to cut government funding to education.

Teaching at a DCSS High School said...

To Anon @ 10:48

I'd like to think that we are arguing the same point, perhaps from 2 equally pertinent perspectives.

"give the students a safe and clean environment" ....not enough security personnel or custodial staff either...

We need trained, competent personnel on all levels within the local school to "Bring the class sizes down,... and let them have access to working and cutting edge science and technology equipment."

Title I funding might help but when the choice is $35,000 for an extra teacher versus $35,000 for extra equipment.....I'm choosing staff over stuff.

Perhaps your visits to middle school were just a foreshadowing of what takes place on the High School level when some of the same students are much less inclined to follow instruction whether it's from a bullhorn or a dedicated kind-hearted teacher just trying to do his/her job.

Still, it's hard to manage the resources that are available when too many students are underprepared, apathetic, and unaware of what it will take for them to truly be productive and prosperous in their world. Sometimes it's not the things we have or don't have within the school, but the integral character traits that students lack because what takes place outside the school.

No, I'm not blaming the home, I'm just saying that there a a lot of variables that contribute to the successful education of every child.

Teaching at a DCSS High School said...

To anon @11:44
.....and others who may feel the same way.

Ha, ha, Ha....

It's just amazing how someone would want to try to "race bait" the bloggers here. We're WAY TOO SMART FOR THAT !!!

....."total failure of the educational system in south Dekalb.....because of the race issue".....now THAT is some FUNNY STUFF especially in a system the size of DCSS (north, south, east, and west) where over 70% of students are black.

.....you are FUNNY.......try again when you have something worthwhile to say..

....Now back to our regularly scheduled programming....


Be True to Your School said...

@ Teaching at a DCSS High School, 12:17 PM

Actually, yes, I am blaming the home. It is time -- past time, really -- for parents to step up and assume the responsibility that is theirs. Parents have a responsibility to read daily to their babies, toddlers and young children. Parents have a responsibility to teach, model and insist on honesty, effort and perseverance, good manners, appropriate dress and respectful behavior.

Far more actual education would take place in our classrooms if teachers did not spend so much time on students behaving badly, then dealing with the parents. These are the same parents who often don't show up for parent-teacher conferences and have no involvement with the school whatsoever, but turn up like a bad penny to defend the indefensible behavior of their children.

Anonymous said...

Be True,
Good stuff here. The parents though that you are referring to won't be reading this blog. So, unfortunately, you are preaching to the choir.

Anonymous said...

I am not sure it is "race baiting" to point out huge disparities in educaltional outcomes that track georgraphical dividing lines (north Fulton vs. south Fulton, north Atlanta vs. south Atlanta, north Dekalb vs. south Dekalb). A historically disadvantaged group gets power and control, but does this mean that it has won? Clearly, the people making inflated salaries have won, but what about the overall population? And, remember, the southern Republicans are playing absolutely ruthless hardball politics based, above all, on race. They will continue to cut government spending. And they are very happy to have the disparities mentioned above -- together with the corruption -- as a justification for what they are doing.

A Mother said...

Be True to Your School


Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 12:44 and 1:16

I'm the one that pointed out the bullhorns in middle schools in South DeKalb, and I don't think it's race baiting.

A policy of "containment" is not the same as a policy of "quality education". We have built modern schools, filled our school system with every "program" under the sun, and spent tens of millions on training programs. It's simply not working, and many parents in those schools that have failing test scores and students who are misbehaving have given up.

Schools are not going to change parents regardless of all the Parent Centers we establish (yet another expensive program). We shouldn't be in that business anyway. That's a social program, and it seems we have a tough enough time just running an educational program - something we aren't doing very well.

Every child deserves:
1. A safe and clean environment
2. Competent teachers in reasonably sized classrooms
3. Access to cutting edge science and technology equipment

Every job in the school system outside of the classroom should be open to cutting, consolidation and outsourcing. Bring non-teaching salaries in line with other systems and the private sector.

Don't ask who is friends with whom or related to whom when doing this. If you want to ask any questions, ask teachers who actually teach students what they need to do their jobs. Ask all of the teachers all over the county what services/programs are working and what aren't working. We have thousands of bright, committed teachers who just need a chance to teach our students.

As Cerebration has pointed out time and again, we have a lot of money - over $11,000 per child to educate DCSS students.

The DCSS administration and the BOE has long been a money pit - money goes in and gets sucked up into the vast "jobs program" never to be seen again. We can raise it to $12,000 per child and nothing will change if we continue to ignore the needs of the classroom.

Anonymous said...

Important to add that the money is no longer there. How long before the parents in places like Dunwoody and around Lakeside will demand that they be given control over the way their tax dollars are spent? The tax base in south Dekalb is gone. It will not come back. Large sections of the area are taking on the characteristics of a suburban slum. What is truly shocking is how little our leadership understands the game that is being played. Or they don't care, as long as the pay checks keep coming. I still don't get the "race baiting" thing. These things are talked about all the time at places like Morehouse and Howard.

Anonymous said...

Dunwoody will be with us for the foreseeable future. It takes a Georgia constitutional amendment to form a new school system for Dunwoody, Fernbank, Lakeside or any other area in DeKalb County.

I live in the Northlake area inside the Perimeter not too far from Emory and CDC. It's a beautiful close-in area with little traffic congestion. The only building we see is infill housing. We have easy 15 minute access to Buckhead, downtown and the Virginia Highlands area while retaining a suburban feel. Parents in my neighborhood have access to high achieving schools or some great private schools. My zip code has actually seen an increase in property values.

My husband and I are retired, and recently went outside the perimeter to North Fulton to look at retirement homes. Big, beautiful new homes but - loads of traffic, at least an hour to drive to the theater, restaurants, museum, a lack of tall trees, a deadening sameness to the landscape, etc. We came back to our house that is half the size of those homes and said we'll just stay put.

If the school system gets worse, many parents in my neighborhood will probably send their kids to private schools. Most likely there will be some charter schools - like the Avondale neighborhood formed. People will continue to move here because it's an extremely livable community, but their involvement in and support for the public schools will be lessened.

You are correct in that many South DeKalb neighborhoods are indeed decimated. Many people are "under water" with their mortgages as their property values have plummeted - so in essence they and their children are trapped in this bloated school system that is all about family and friends and not at all about competence.

Dekalbparent said...

The Parent Centers are expensive, no argument, but they have gotten mixed reviews - Kim (whom I trust as a Voice Of Reason), has said the Parent Center has done a lot of good in the Cross Keys cluster. He said it helps the non-English speaking parents learn how things work, as well as providing families with access to technology that they don't have at home. I think that, culturally speaking, it is more likely that these families will go to a center associated with their kids' school than that they would go to a library...

Teachers in that cluster, what do you say? Is it worth it?

What about those of you who work in other clusters - do you find them worthwhile?

If it turns out that some Parent centers are helpful to the community and the schools are seeing progress from them, then those Centers can stay - if others are not worth providing, then that money should be used at the school level for things that will benefit the students.

This would probably allow DCSS to eliminate a few CO positions and put the money back into the schools.

Anonymous said...

Dunwoody did get control of its zoning, which boils down to population control. Lakeside and Druid Hills will move to rollback transfers. Again, population control. The earlier poster raised a valid point. Given the glaring inability to fix the problems in South Dekalb and the sheer incompetence of DCSS, who benefits politically? Certainly not the Democrats. Burden sharing sounds absurd when the north pays so much more in taxes and gets absolutely nothing to show for it. And the Mountain Industrial Center kind of takes the edge off of white liberal guilt when you see the bathrooms at Lakeside and the mold at Chamblee. The people making decisions in South Dekalb are way out of their league. There is a theory about all of this that says if you put the right people in power certain outcomes are more or less guaranteed. Didn't Lewis boast of being "groomed"?

Anonymous said...

Dunwoody, Lakeside, Chamblee, etc., have no control over their school population - as long as NCLB and administrative transfers are allowed to continue.

Anonymous said...

@ Dekalbparent 4:46 pm

Re Parent Centers. We spend $4,400,000 annually in salaries and benefits for the personnel to staff our Parent Centers. Are they worth 80 teachers with 3 years experience and a Masters Degree?

Several posters said earlier that they were counselors, and that counselors and social workers provide much of the same services for parents.

We spend $22,500,000 (over $84,000 per counselor versus $65,000 per teacher) in salary and benefits for 267 counselors. I'm not sure what
the total is for social workers. Asking them to take on added responsibilities as Ms. Tyson and the BOE has asked teachers to take on additional students doesn't seem unreasonable to me, especially given they make on average $9,000 more per year than teachers.

Be True to Your School said...

@ DeKalbParent 4:46 PM

Re: Parent Centers

I have requested usage statistics for the parent centers, but have gotten nothing. I was told that usage figures are not available.

Libraries (school and public) typically record usage figures and provide them as evidence of service. Libraries normally record this information daily, sometimes on an hourly basis throughout the day.

At a minimum, documentation of the number of people served is necessary to determine how needed these centers are. Anecdotal information is merely someone's opinion.

Anonymous said...

Re: parent centers. Some are productive, some are not. Statistics do not tell the true story of what really happens in the parent centers. If you really want to know, go spend a couple of hours in one and you will get a truer picture. Some have suggested that only about three centers are needed in the entire county, north, south and central. It was also suggested that these parent centers were CL's idea. What is interesting are the high salaries that are not commensurate with the education and experience required and the job requirements. What is also interesting is who are in these positions (am I in the friends and family section?). While you are checking parent centers employees, check out the prevention intervention specialists, too.

Anonymous said...

Well the friends and family plan continue to be in full effect. The new principal of Columbia ES is Raymond Stanley. His wife is also an employee with DCSS.

Be True to Your School said...

Re: Parent Centers

That's kind of a cop-out, isn't it, Anonymous, 8:01 PM? I refer to your suggestion that it is necessary to go spend 2 or 3 hours in a parent center to gauge productivity. Anecdotal reports by observers are inadequate; they must be backed up by documentable usage statistics, as well as documentable achievements by parent center users.

Be True to Your School said...

RE: Parents Centers

The only reason why Parent Centers are not keeping usage statistics must be because there is minimal usage.

The federal funding for these centers -- as well as the federal interest period for the purchased equipment -- has probably long since expired. It's time to send the DCSS funding for these centers into the classroom where it belongs.

Dekalbparent said...

Be True -

Your point about usage statistics is well-made, but that alone is not sufficient; say a Center is used quite a lot, according to the stats, but the schools report absolutely no increase in parent involvement or student achievement - no detectable difference in the schools. I would call that Center ineffective and use the money somewhere else. Perhaps the families were using it to surf the web or play games. Perhaps the staff was no good at helping the families or answering their questions.

But, on the other hand, if a Center had good stats, AND the schools reported an change for the better in the students as well as increased parent contact and involvement (e.g. better attendance at PTA meetings, Curriculum Night and parent conferences), I would have to give that anecdotal evidence credibility.

Would this be enough to justify the expense? Could similar results be achieved in a less expensive way? That would need to be determined.

Anonymous said...

Re: parent centers. No you cannot gauge or estimate actual usage or productivity only by observations or only by statistics. However, not being given statistics as requested by an earlier blogger makes one wonder... Whenever someone gets the stats, then maybe they can compare the stats to the actual observed usage. Is there a survey of how productive they have been and what criterium is used to measure their effectiveness? The point here is that it appears that some centers are being appropriately used while others may not be. Either increase the usage or consolidate so that these funds can be used in other needed areas. The concept of parent centers is not new and they are part of Title 1 parental involvement. However, one must be very careful in accepting ONLY reported statistics as THE only measure of productivity.

Be True to Your School said...

I certainly agree with you, Dekalbparent. My concern is that there is nothing to go on right now in terms of the value of these parent centers -- and undocumentable anecdotal claims just aren't enough.

In these tight financial times, anything that is not proven must go.

Anonymous said...

Re Parent Centers and other "pet projects

Lewis and his "upper management" long ago appropriated the federal Title 1 funds for "pet projects and programs" to employ and enrich friends and family. The Office of School Improvement siphons off the money from Title 1 as well as America's Choice, Springboard, and the dreaded Instructional Coaches.

5 years of $30,000,000 a year Title 1 funds and what have our students gotten in return ($150,000,000 total)? Absolutely nothing but declining scores. These are our poorest students. What a shame.

Dekalbparent said...

Wellll, y'all, you are persuasive.

The fact that the Parent Centers are connected to Title I (forever tainted by the C Lewis experience, in my mind), and have reportedly been used as part of "Friends and Family Employment Agency" really really bothers me.

And, everybody, you are right - I don't bet there have been any measures of effectiveness done on them, and I'll bet it was never in any plans to do any measuring.

No Duh said...

Great article today in the ajc about building leadership skills within a community.


Proves the point that it is not the schools' responsibility to make parents better parents. It is the communities' job. And who is the direct link between the schools and the community...well, the elected School Board Members of course!!!

Anyone know a strong Hispanic leader who we could put up for election in one of these contested districts?

Be True to Your School said...

Anyone know a strong Hispanic leader who we could put up for election in one of these contested districts?

Why not check with the Latin American Association? They are right on Buford Highway, inside DeKalb County. If anyone knows of the right candidate(s), they will.

Also, an Asian BOE member would be a valuable resource.

Anonymous said...

Zepora has a daughter who is a parent resource counselor. She is paid very well.

Anonymous said...

Please don't tell me that the same Raymond Stanley that began his career as a JANITOR has now earned his way up to school principal when I know of intelligent, career educators who were'nt even granted an interview? WHERE IS THE JUSTICE?????????????????????

Anonymous said...

Sorry I was so angry about a JANITOR being promoted ahead of so many others that truly care about the our students' futures that I put my apostrophe in the wrong place. It should read weren't.
DeKalb's political garbage makes me want to spit nails!!!!UUUUUUUUUUUUUGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHH
I must hand it to the powers that be. Having worked in Atlanta public at the height of its political foolishness, NOTHING that I saw in Atlanta could hold a candle to the borish, audacious, acts of the BIG DUMMIES in charge here in DeKalb. Education has hit an all-time low. Excuse me while I go and cry now as I live in South DeKalb and after reading this thread I know I can expect many more desperate, ill equipped DeKalb high school students to continue to kick in my basement door and robb me for years to come...hell I don't even know if I blame them. Their futures are non existant...

Anonymous said...

It's Stanley's SON.

Anonymous said...

Regardless of whose son Raymond Stanley is his promotion is just one more act that demonstrates that one thing those in charge of hiring in South DeKalb do not value is competence. Those with the ability to be the "turn around" Principals and Assistant Principals so desperately needed in this area, are deliberately overlooked (I know of people who have tried for 8 years or more to no avail). I am inclined to believe that some of those Central Level Administrators in charge of "hiring" are intimidated by candidates with intelligence, who speak proper English, can model and monitor those strategies that increase academic achievement( and therefore ELIMINATE the need for Instructional Coaches) , and are unwilling to compromise their personal integrity.
The aforementioned candidate will not go along to get along and that's all that matters in hiring the personnel in South DeKalb, why anything else will eradicate the need for these scripted programs and superfluous Instructional Coaches.
On the contrary in order to keep the federal assistance money flowing in that area of the county they must ensure that little to no academic growth is ever really achieved. A school is only as good as its leaders...just ask the parents in North DeKalb 'cause they refuse to allow just anyone to be placed in those schools and if it happens without their knowledge, look to see how long that appointed leader lasts.
I challenge those in South DeKalb; if you're not going to insist that your board members are competent at least make sure those who lead the school are...my God what is wrong with you people?

Anonymous said...

There are some crummy administrators in N. DeKalb schools, but I agree the problem is far more severe in S. DeKalb.

Yes, you are not allowed to name specific school staff, but you can do a 3 minute speech on poor leadership without mentioning a name. A few years ago, at one of the theme schools, there was a lot of trouble with a principal. The parents took about 6 slots in a row. They had written one long speech and where one person stopped, the next one started. It was awesome. What was so infuriating to me was that this was theme school where the principal was trying to limit parent access to the school. Hello! Parents are required to volunteer there. Anyway, I was amazed that the parents had not been able to get any relief from the Central Office without having to go so public.

I think that DCSS has used choice as a weapon to keep schools down. I know that there have been S. DeKalb board members (no longer on the board) who would rather help you get an administrative transfer for your child than address the issues at your home school.

The worst culprit of this is the same DeKalb board member, who when addressing an AJC investigation that revealed how poorly some DeKalb students were doing in GA colleges, said "Our students aren't poorly prepared, they just don't test well." She did finally get voted out, but her legacy is terrible.

Cerebration said...

Anon, there's no way that someone could possibly be simply promoted from janitor to principal - without the proper educational requirements. As noted, we are talking father/son here, but even if it was the same person, this would be an American success story. In theory, you could work as a janitor, attend school at night and work your way up to principal. That's not what happened here, but it it was, I would applaud the effort.

Principals certainly earn their promotions. Some are better than others, but DeKalb's problem is far too little principal training and support coupled with the policy of promoting principals into administrative jobs like transportation and facilities management. When really, we need dedicated, well-trained principals who are strong, positive leaders in every school. And we need to leave them there for a minimum of 5 years in order to bring consistent improvement.

Additionally, we need to quit this scripted learning style of teaching. All this does is teach students to parrot and respond, rather than think.

Anonymous said...

I am confused/alarmed by the fruit basket turnover of HS principals. With everything that is going on at DCSS, is it really a great time to shuffle so many principals? Without even speaking as to the merit of those being demoted (or those who are taking their places), is it really the right time to make a bunch of changes? Obviously I can see that if there was a serious issue with a particular principal we would want to make a change...but this seems like a lot of reshuffling. Is this really what the DCSS needs to be focusing on right now?

Cerebration said...

I think a total paradigm shift needs to occur from the top in this system. We have somehow evolved to a system that only respects the superintendent and his/her so-called "cabinet". There is also respect for high-level coordinators/administrators/supervisors (of which we have far too many). The respect for the schoolhouse employees has dwindled. There is lip-service, but no actual support/respect. This goes for principals, teachers, paras, counselors, media clerks, bus drivers, etc.

Until we run a system that puts the respect, support and well-being (and pay) of the schoolhouse employees first, we will not begin to turn this ship around.

Needed: A new superintendent with a new vision - ASAP.

Be True to Your School said...


Cerebration -- FEAR would be a more accurate word to use when discussing CLew-less, his cabinet and his top administrators. FEAR

Note how many people use "Anonymous" to participate in this blog. Note how many people use a pseudonym (myself included) to participate in this blog. You do, too.

FEAR is the means through which CLew-less and his cronies managed to do the possibly irreparable damage they have done to DCSS. FEAR enabled them to steal from DCSS.

FEAR is a disease, spread effectively by CLew-less and his cronies. Everyone in DCSS who used FEAR in any way must be let go. If not, like nasty, dangerous mold spores, FEAR will take root again and we will have more of the same.

Anonymous said...

Y.Butler's salary was posted along with her certifications. But, keep in mind, this lady promotion as a Wellness Directors showed nothing in the areas that the job listed when it was posted. (Poor Shannon, we see why you left the maize.)
Butler is not qualified to be over a well program based on her degrees that were posted. So, explain her salary. I guess they included her speeches and books that she sold during school time as a bonus. If you get a chance, view her on Martha Stewart.com or type in yvonne sanders butler and chicken salad and you will get just shake your head at the stories that she is providing to Martha Stewart about her test school that never managed because of her abstentism due to promoting her book deals while on DCSS time while teachers ran the school for this lady.Donot buy into the sugar deal. What are Shannon credentials as an assistant wellness director?
112,000 is a lot of money to make for a person not to be certified in that area. DCSS ,please cut this lady's salary and send her packing once her certifications expires in 2011. Unless, she can come back with certifications in health and wellness ,

Anonymous said...

I am keeping a running list of the names, positions and relationships mentioned in this blog. If you know of any, please post - but be sure that you are not just blowing smoke.

Anonymous said...

I will communicate with Cere about what I put together, to see if taking the information further makes sense.

Anonymous said...

How much is Calloway's daughter making as a preventive specialist? She is not certified because she cannot pass the teacher certification test. It good that mama put her siblings in place before checking out in a hurry.

Be True to Your School said...

What is Frankie Callaway's daughter's name? I can't look up how much she is earning without knowing her name.

Anonymous said...

Frankie calloway's daughter is' Tori Calloway Benjamin. She works as a preventive Specialist. (a created job since she is unable to pass the Gace test as a teacher. Not sure about which school but do know that she is in the county. A member of her mom's organization as well. family and friends, huh!
This position should be cut or given to a person who is qualified.

Anonymous said...

So many "created" positions. So much waste. What will happen next year when we need to cut even more? Will we rise to 37 and 38 in classroom size to accommodate the 8,500 in admin and support personnel?

Anonymous said...

In reference to the created jobs that were untouched since most of the jobs belong fall under the umbrella of The Friends and Family Plan, teachers will face a staggering classroom of 38 or more students in their class. I wish we could see the list of cut jobs and see how many of those elite jobs from the family and friends plans were actually eliminated.This would really tell the story of what and how DCSS has provided these people with a safety net while the common folks were let go.
Fall is going to be hard to bear when staff report back especially if their school has a principal or administrator from the family and friends plan. It is hard to respect these people as your boss. Especially if you know they didnot earn their position.

Anonymous said...

It is sad to read this information knowing everyday I get up and go to work to make a difference in the lives of my students. I am currently dealing with a principal who benefited from the friends and family plan via Dr. Bouie. She brags about this connection as a reminder that she is untouchable. The leadership is flawed and the vision is cloudy. We have complained and parents have complained all to no avail.

Anonymous said...

At one time Dr. Butler had a sister who was a principal in DCSS as well as a sister who was in PDS TV 24. Maybe someone remembers their names.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Butler's sister is the principal at Rainbow. I understand she is well respected at this school and does not share that she has a sibling in the school system. Unless someone can show she is not effective an as employee or got her opportunities solely on her relationships, it is not fair assume otherwise.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Butler's sister name is Annette. She curses her staff and is not easy to get along with. Did she as well benefit from the family and friends plan? The answer would be yes and she does let you know that Yvonne Butler is her sister.
The only difference is that Butler's sister does not use students, staff or others to promote a cookbook or use the county's time to travel. Dr. Butler has abused county time, and made teachers purchase her cookbooks while trying to be a principal. With that said, she falls into the same category as Dr. Carol Thedford for selling books. With that said, Butler, used the county time to make personal speeches during school time, had an entourage of publishers in her school promoting her cookbooks under the identify of students eating healthy, brought in her personal makeup artist and had her makeup applied during school hours, took off from work so many times until the school ran itself. Is there a comparison with Butler and her sister, Annette Roberts, yes, both benefitted from the friends and family plan. Do, they abuse their power because of their connections, yes. Are they respected , NO.
See how far you will get if you, sold cookbooks and traveled on the county's time to make speeches that you were paid while on DCSS time. See if we would be promoted or have our pictures painted all across the television with Martha Stewart,you would be out of a JOB!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, be thankful that your principal no longer has the hook-up with Boouie, that thing is retiring and people all over the county are celebrating her departure. So, now your principal will have to find another support within the friends and family plan to help do her dirty work.

Anonymous said...

These connections remind me of Nixon and Lincoln

Nixon’s wife liked bananas and Lincoln’s wife went bananas

Let’s see if we can throw the baby out with the bath water.

Let's hire 7000 employees and specify that none of them can be related in any way to each other or any one else. Moreover, they can not have any acquaintance with anyone who is on the school board, has been on the school board, will be on the school board. They should also not be members of Leadership DeKalb any social club, fraternity, sorority, or civic group that any other employee or past present and future board member belong to.

Let us fire every central office employee and let the good ones (if any) suffer just to be sure we have rid ourselves of the bad ones. Let the innocent be victims of the purge of the guilty. Let’s outsource every janitor, HR person, bus driver, PR person, cafeteria worker, and librarian. Maybe we can replace them with a fine upstanding company like Halliburton, Blackwater, or Enron. Maybe we can find someone who can make a profit off the out sourcing so that we waste some more money. If they hire illegal aliens it might even save us some tax dollars.

The action is in the classroom. Let’s not do anything like volunteer to tutor, do lunch duty, or really get involved when it’s more fun to just complain. A really active community would have the school board it deserves. Maybe we do.

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 3:09 pm

"Let's hire 7000 employees and specify that none of them can be related in any way to each other or any one else. "

I don't think that's the tenor of this article. I haven't heard of a single relative that is a classroom teacher or a lower paid support employee mentioned on any of these posts.

The Central Office is overstaffed, overpaid and ineffective. That's just a statement of fact. DCSS has 1,239 Central Office employees for only 6,611 (soon to be much less) teachers. That's 1 Central office employee for every 5 teachers not even counting the administrators (principal and APs) at the schoolhouse level. That's what I would term excessive administration.

The Central Office numbers came from Ms. Tyson:

The Teacher numbers came from the state DOE (which got their information from DCSS). In 2008-2009, DCSS reported to the state that we had 6,886 teachers and Lewis cut teacher positions for 2009-2010 by 275 so 6,886 - 275 = 6,611 teachers:
(Source is State DOE site:

Central Office numbers and salaries have risen (due to the creation of new positions created and new salary schedules) while teacher numbers and salaries have decreased due to budget balancing being done by freezing and then reducing teacher salaries and not filling teacher positions that are vacant due to attrition.

The only important factor any DCSS taxpayer should be concerned with that is that student class sizes have risen and achievement scores have declined. That is the end all and be all for this entire discussion. DCSS should be about students - not jobs. We are not a jobs program. We should not care who gets outsourced as long as the job gets done as well or better for less money.

It takes money to provide EVERY DCSS student with:
1. A clean and safe environment
2. A competent teacher in a reasonably sized classroom
3. Access to cutting edge science and technology equipment

Any and all options that can give EVERY student the 3 basic rights above should be employed without regard to any employee in DCSS.

So yes - we need some new "bathwater".

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous 3:09 pm

"The action is in the classroom. Let’s not do anything like volunteer to tutor, do lunch duty, or really get involved when it’s more fun to just complain. "

Judging by many of the posts, many of the commentators are volunteering in their schools and they are very upset with what they see. I suspect they are in the classrooms helping students and teachers way more than Central Office and many support personnel. Other commentators are teachers. I was in DCSS for 30 years as a teacher and outside the schoolhouse training teachers in almost every school so I've seen it from both sides. Many, many of the posts ring true to me. And yes - even teacher training could be easily outsourced. They'll just never tell anyone that.

Dan M. said...

Grow up, Anon 3:19 pm. If you don't see a major problem with nepotism and cronyism, whether with hiring, promotions, awarding contracts, etc., then you are blind to the landslide of issues facing DCSS, and the repurcussions they bring to a billion dollar entity.

Anonymous said...

Excellent teacher training can be obtained at no cost to schools through the education division of Georgia Public Broadcasting.

DeKalb Teacher/sending kid to private school said...

???????? Excellent teacher training can be obtained at no cost to schools through the education division of Georgia Public Broadcasting.??????????

Why not take this idea further and substitute teacher with student... that will solve ALL our problems ;)

Anonymous said...

Obviously, you have never been a teacher attending inservice training.

How many businesses do you know that take their employees after hours and train them?

How effective do you think it is to train teachers when they are totally exhausted after teaching all day or take their plan period away when they have a stack of papers to grade and irate parents wanting to be contacted?

I have trained teachers after hours that fell asleep they were so tired. I didn't even wake them up. What do you think they would learn at that point?

Better yet - why don't we bring them in on Saturday so they can miss their child's soccer game? That will really set the stage for learning.

DCSS inhouse training staff should be in the classrooms teaching classes every day modeling what they want teachers to learn.

Better yet, we should outsource as much training as we can. It is more efficient and economical. I say that as a former DCSS trainer.

Maybe Georgia Public Broadcasting is not the way to go, but the training scenario our teachers currently receive is simply not working for them and for their students.

Anonymous said...

For Anon 4:01 "we need some new bathwater" comment

Have you ever thought of running for the board? If I could have someone like you, Redovian and maybe Walker along with a few other new productive individuals it would be an answer to my prayers.
Also, I just want to say that I think a part of the problem is the way School Board meetings are held. I admit I am not an expert on the rules used in conducting meetings but I have been apart of and witness to other school board meetings in another distrct from out of state and while I understand time limits, why are the members not allowed to make comments on public remarks made when they can have endless chatter about how much money they can accept in gifts?
Lastly, a commment was made about why we all hide behind anonymous and I feel the passion behind going to the meetings with t-shirts that say "anonymous" but remember this is a school system in which the then superintendant, Crawford, was able to request principals to find out which teachers in the middle of an instructional day were wearing black to show solidarity against him receiving a pay raise. What was he planning on doing with that information?, How is this type of intimidation allowed? I think we all know that "anonymous" is not all that anonymous but we certainly don't want to make it too easy for them but I think with the growing frustration and frankly hurt about the way things are we are becoming braver and bolder. Remember, if we don't stand for something, we will fall for anything. It is all of our hope that if a board member, or people that are able to impact a difference will see our cries for change while keeping our anonymity, understanding, that intimidation and unscrupolous leaders are still in positions that could cause harm to our livelihood if employed by DCSS or negatively impact our children in some way would take these cries or suggestopns and impact change. As an educator, I am much more eager to praise positive change than criticize and I would gladly shout to theworld the leaders in the school system who are willing to listen to stakeholders and consider their suggestion and try to remedy frustrations rather than villainize
us and call us complainers that should be ignored. Thank you again for this forum.

Be True to Your School said...

The Education Division of Georgia Public Broadcasting is a statewide program that is an incredible gem. (http://www.gpb.org/education) If you visualized old-style, boring public broadcasting with teachers clustered around a talking head on a TV set -- come on in to the 21st century!

Teacher training provided by Georgia Public Broadcasting can be face-to-face. But, Georgia Public Broadcasting also offers engaging on-demand training utilizing new media.

For the person who suggested substituting the word "students" for "teachers" and all our problems would be solved -- go take a look at the Georgia Virtual School (http://www.gavirtualschool.org/). Then ask yourself -- why on Earth is DCSS paying millions for the DeKalb Online Academy (DOLA)? Another Friends-and-Family program?

For everyone, take a look at Georgia Public Broadcasting's 3 television channels (thanks to digital broadcast): GPB/HD; GPB Knowledge; and GPB Kids. (http://www.gpb.org/television)

Why pay more (million$ in the DCSS budget) and get less?

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