By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
The Observer has a chance to make a difference. No local paper can have any effect on the economy. No local paper can have an effect on our totally incompetent and self-serving state government. You can, however, have a definite effect on local issues.
We have a school board and administration that are grossly incompetent, cowards and self-proclaimed assholes. They lie with impunity. We have a mayor who doesn't care about the city, only his cronies. He doesn't care that Dallas is No. 1 in crime and has a terrible school system, but favors spending $500 million on a convention hotel and building the Trinity project in a flood plain.
The way the Observer can make a change is to quit running articles about how and why the problem exists. The articles are just lies anyway, not by the writers but by the school board and the administration.
Instead of articles, just run fully across the cover, "When Will the Cowardly Assholes Resign?" And run full pages of the names of the school board and administrators and ask the same question. Run them until they all resign or until the next election. If these idiots get re-elected, it's time to give up.
You also should ask for the officers of the teachers union to resign. They agreed to a terrible contract. I have never seen a contract that doesn't call for last-hired, first-fired.
[School board president] Jack Lowe is pathetic, and I don't know if [DISD superintendent Michael] Hinojosa is just incompetent or corrupt. Either way, they both have to go.
I have lived in several cities and have never seen such bad management. I have lived in cities with corrupt government that worked better than Dallas.
I've got the solution. We call all teachers "football coaches." I guarantee you that they would find the money for football coaches.
An article in The Dallas Morning News says that sex club the Cherry Pit was being operated efficiently as a business. It's obvious: DISD should hire those guys to run its financial department.
If we change the way we look at things we can often change the way things look.
I extend apologies to the DISD leadership. Earlier I wrote about DISD having more than 19,000 employees and suggested teachers should not be a consideration in the budget cuts.
I question myself as to why something so basic to school management was seemingly being overlooked by very intelligent leaders.
This query allotted more pause, which resulted in changing the way I looked at the alarming reports.
Just as sure as we have low-performing schools, we certainly have low-performing teachers. Can this latest demonstration of incompetence in financial management [be] a huge blessing for our children?
Dallas, as with public education across America, is crippled by teachers unions when it comes to weeding out ineffective teachers who ultimately do more harm than good. Could our changed view be one of looking at this need to cut back as an opportunity to sidestep the red tape of teachers unions?
Districts across the country are stifled by powerful unions that are designed for the interests of the teachers often even at the expense of children.
Is there a possibility we have one or 600 teachers who need to change professions? If it is true about the one bad apple can you imagine having hundreds contaminating society's most valuable asset, our children?
If we change the way we look, we may have a wonderful opportunity to purge and purify our talent pool to yield a higher percentage of exceptional teachers.
Give me an excellent and dynamic teacher with 22 students and a higher salary over a mediocre or poor one with 17 students any day. Perhaps we owe compliments to DISD for an indirect strategy that will ultimately improve instruction for the entire district.
Terry Flowers, Dallas
There was a time when DISD had two up-front political advocacy groups that ran slates for office—the Committee for Good Schools and the League for Educational Advancement in Dallas. CGS could be compared to the group you are taking on today (the vested establishment), and LEAD could be compared to the Texas Parent PAC (they were reformers who wanted to break away from the status quo). It made for some interesting and heated campaigns, but all the issues were laid out and well aired, and people had choices. Of course, that was when all trustees were elected at-large and before the powers that be became convinced that single-member districts would enhance voter involvement and result in better representation for the disenfranchised. Well, it did neither, and it killed healthy campaigns that focused on what was in the best interests of the entire school system. Too bad.
Larry, via dallasobserver.com