Leon County School Board Meeting Briefs November 16, 2021

Leon County School Board Meeting Briefs November 16, 2021

Listed is a summary of the topics covered at the November 16, 2021 Leon County School Board meeting.

—- During Tuesday’s Leon County School Board meeting, Darryl Jones was nominated by Chair Joy Bowen and unanimously selected as the next Chair for the 2021-2022 school year.

Darryl Jones nominated board member Alva Striplin to be the Vice-Chair for the 2021-2022 school year.

The newly appointed Chair made a few remarks after his appointment. Jones said he is looking forward to the upcoming year and detailed a number of his priorities.

Jones wants to begin the groundwork for establishing a “privately funded intensive program for Title 1 schools.” He would like to consider creating a Grants Office, which will focus on obtaining grants and facilitate the authoring of grants for LCSB.

Jones said he would like to optimize public engagement and focus on Lively Technical College as a pathway for many students to learn a vocation. Jones concluded by saying he would like to create a state-of-the-art early learning center on the Southside.

—- The Big Bend Minority Chamber of Commerce presented the Board with a $23,000 check toward Leon County Title 1 schools.

—- Red Hills Academy’s application was approved by the Board as directed by the State Board of Education. This approval comes after the LCSB denied the charter schools application in March 2021. Red Hills then filed an appeal. A hearing was held in August/September 2021 when the Charter School Appeal Commission recommended approval of the application to the State Board of Education.

Superintendent Rocky Hanna addressed the Red Hills Academy Board member, Chair Laura Joanos, after the approval. “You are now one of us. We will support you like one of us. If you succeed, we succeed, and the children succeed,” Hanna said.

—- The Board approved the out-of-county travel for school board members to the Florida School Board Association’s (FSBA) 76th annual Joint Conference in Tampa, Florida, on November 30 – December 3, 2021.

—- The Board voted to advertise the amendments to Policy 5780–Student/Parent Rights and approved the public hearing on January 11, 2022.

11 Responses to "Leon County School Board Meeting Briefs November 16, 2021"

  1. The District’s publication of changes in its students and parent’s rights policy should be generating more interest. I couldn’t tell what it was changing and why. New language includes “respect for the rights of others”, “obedience”, “compliance” . https://go.boarddocs.com/fla/leon/Board.nsf/Public# 5780 is the number

    In another apparently new section, it reiterates parents right to receive records, but specifically excludes “unless the information concerns a parent and and would otherwise trigger the mandatory reporting…” State law protects disclosure of mandatory and non-mandatory child abuse reports, already. So what it appears to be saying is that all records that a school keeps that the school has decided might document bad parent behavior, they are going to refuse to provide the parent (and presumably the other parent too). We all want our schools staff to protect children, and we get that they don’t have to provide any DCF child abuse/neglect reports school or its personnel have made, or that the school has made one. But why is it appropriate to be able to withhold documents or information they know about the child or think about the parent, from that parent, or from the other parent? Why should a SD be able to withhold communications from one parent from the other parent — how does that treat parents as equals? SD should provide everything to any parent about their child (including communication from the other parent) and everything that the school thinks problematic about a parent’s actions, so that the parent can address and resolve real concerns, and challenge inappropriate school responses. Failing to do deprives the parent the SD has decided is problematic from due process (maybe defames them), and potentially damages the children’s relationship with the parent, simply because the school says so. If LCSB is thinking that this is appropriate when one parent wants to support a child in a gender transition, and the other parent wants to support a child without encouraging gender transition, LCSB would be wrong.

    I did notice language I think was added a year or so ago after a statutory change that prohibits school personnel from intimidating parents “At the meeting’s conclusion, parents, student… and District personnel SHALL SIGN the anticoercion form…” which is astounding in its irony that the District wants to compel parents to sign AT a meeting in front of the people who would have coerced, interfered with them in the first place, and who hold lots of unsupervised/unknown power over their children. (I routinely tell parents to refuse to sign, but ask for a copy to take home with them — which they can then return when and if they choose.)

    What the policy does NOT include but should is:

    parent right to observe in their child’s classrooms, either remotely or in person

    parent and student right to record any interaction with school personnel (while it hasn’t been said by a court, school personnel have just as much power as police officers do and the 11th circuit has held that the public has a constitutional right to record them in the course of their public duties. Further, the 1st DCA has held that the FL statute that requires two party consent to recording doesn’t apply when there are three people in the meeting. And FL state law gives parents the right to have someone beside themselves in every meeting with school personnel.)

    (I’ve never understood why school personnel and administrators object to/fear this — it means no one can distort whatever happened. It mans that everyone can learn from the interaction and fix what should be fixed. It means that those involved can share what really happened with their spouse, the other parent or even the child who needs to know something, without any distortions. It protects everyone.)

    student right to record classroom lectures and discussion— this is a common accommodation for those who have trouble listening and taking notes simultaneously. But students shouldn’t have to ask to use OTTER on their phone or a Livescribe. And they shouldn’t be refused that accommodation because a teacher doesn’ t want to be recorded. (I would put in the policy that students may be disciplined including expulsion if they use any recording to make fun of others, bully, or to make public what an individual student does or says without that student’s permission, unless the recording documents discrimination, a crime, or harassment/ bullying. I would include also a requirement that student or staff must provide a copy to the principal of the school at least 3 business days before making it public in any social media platform (because this is needed to protect any necessary investigation).

    And, teachers should have the right to record any parent or student or sports/extracurricular fan who is recording them.

    Please join me in asking LCSB to explicitly adopt the additional rights above, and asking for fuller explanation of what the proposed language is intended to address.

    Rosemary N. Palmer

  2. Speaking of NOT protecting our children…

    “The Children’s Services Council of Leon County signed off on Cecka Rose Green as their first executive director at a board meeting Thursday afternoon.”

    Cecka Rose Green’s former positions were working with the Gillum campaign and a Gillum associate entrenched in corruption, scams, and illegal activity. Did Ms. Green question any of the Gillum corruption, did she denounce it, did she profit from it, did she participate in it? This is hardly a favorable past experience acceptable for a children’s services position. It should scream a resounding red flag…NO!

    Being that the corruption was very serious, had devastating consequences for Tallahassee, and does not make for an appropriate pick for children services… you would think a judge and a hospital administrator would have more sense. This is an abomination and an abuse to the children and community that this pick – the mayor’s wife’s pick – would even make it as a contender on the list.

    Again, this must be opposite day where they pick the most inappropriate rather than the best…

    The committee should have put this out for a nationwide search and began the process all over again.

  3. You couldn’t find 6 bigger morons in Leon county if it was your job to find the 6 biggest morons in Leon county and assemble them for a photo! So good job to whoever took that picture…

  4. Breaking news…

    Just when you think it can’t get any worse… The Tallahassee Democrat’s “vile twerp” Bill Cotterell has gone off the deep end and over the cliff… Can’t even stomach reading the rest of his article. It is so awful, horrendous, unprofessional, and racist that he should be fired immediately! Read at your own risk.

  5. One of the problems with our Public Schools is, to many kids in the Classrooms. We Voted to lower the number of Students in each classroom which meant building MORE Classrooms and Hiring MORE Teachers. That was a very long time ago, where are those Classrooms and the Teachers for those Classrooms? I do have a solution that I believe will work to raise money to either build more Classrooms or more Schools but, it is to much to putdown here so look for it soon on my Campaign Web Site at http://www.Hawkins2022.com

  6. Title I funding has been in Leon County Schools for over 50 years. These students have never performed as good as non-Title I schools. It is not a funding problem causing this problem. Throwing more money at it will never solve the issue. It just makes the Supt. and Board feel better. Question for the Board. What is the average per pupil expenditure at Title I schools vs. Non-Title I?

  7. The school board gets more Federal funding for low performing schools. Making for a total disincentive to better serve the childern in the southside schools along with Godby High School. Charter schools are our kids only hope.

  8. ~ Superintendent Rocky Hanna addressed the Red Hills Academy Board member, Chair Laura Joanos, after the approval. “You are now one of us. We will support you like one of us. If you succeed, we succeed, and the children succeed,” Hanna said.

    So… after he tried and failed to cut the legs out from under Red Hills, he now pretends they’re “one of us”… lol Watch your six Red Hills. Hell hath no wrath like a progressive wackjob scorned.

    ~ The Board voted to advertise the amendments to Policy 5780–Student/Parent Rights and approved the public hearing on January 11, 2022.

    Everyone (particularly parents) should pay very close attention to this. Read it ALL very carefully, and prepare to defend our children and our rights.

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