by Rob Broussard [in response to Educational Change…]
I’m glad Mr. Marks enjoyed the bus ride and got to tour some schools, and I truly don’t want to be Debbie Damper on his enthusiasm for education as it requires consistent efforts from a variety of sources for schools to be successful. I also want our local schools to be successful, but let’s take our rose glasses off for a few minutes and consider the following about the public relations trip and those already identified who are pushing this “New Tax bond election proposal.”
- What riders saw on that trip is happening in most schools. What were the scores of the schools you attended? Where all the schools visited Title One Schools? What you see in Title One schools is being accomplished for far fewerdollars per student in say “our neighborhood schools.” It has been a misnomer for decades that throwing (more…)
Add comment December 22, 2014 4:52 pm
Last spring, I learned and wrote about the Caddo Parish Commission’s new “education & training” policy, and what a perk, to say it politely, it might prove to be for Commissioners. As I promised then, this is the initial report on that policy.
What you are about to read is more than merely upsetting, even here and now. Described is an abuse of official discretion, if not worse, which is well beyond the norm. I urge readers to remember that the broader issue here is a public body of (more…)
Add comment December 22, 2014 11:38 am
by Marion Marks
Question: “Lamar Goree may be the best educational leader Caddo has seen in the last ____ Years!” Take your guess as to how to fill in the answer to one of the most difficult questions 2015 leaders and all of Caddo will face. Caddo citizens, Shreveporters, voters, tax payers, students, parents of students, teachers, cafeteria workers or those whose lives will be affected by Lamar Goree, the new CPSB, and Political leaders will be expecting real leadership and transparency immediately.
Wednesday, December 17th I accompanied a number of others, about twenty non-CPSB team in all on a “Bus Tour” of three elementary Transition schools. There was no hiding the fact that those leading the tour expected to “effect” in the tour participants a transitional attitude adjustment from the perception most of the public had on the spiraling-downward trajectory Caddo education in (more…)
Add comment December 21, 2014 11:43 am
Actually the delivery will be a little late… like 2 days. And whether the citizens of Shreveport will be happy with Santa’s deliveries – – in the long run – – is a story yet to be told. Saturday, December 27 will be historic… and not just for the first Duck Commander Independence Bowl. On that day Ollie Tyler and the 2015-2019 City Council will be sworn into office.
As if this writing (Wednesday, December 17), the new Mayor had not announced a transition team much less potential new hires for key positions like Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), City Attorney, and the like. Unconfirmed rumors are that former Shreveport Fire Chief Brain Crawford will be the CAO selection. Crawford served a (more…)
Add comment December 19, 2014 3:10 pm
by Elliott Stonecipher
Wow, what a Christmas season wallop this morning from the Central Office staff of the Caddo Parish School Board! Via a front-page spread in the Shreveport Times, taxpayers – particularly we property tax payers who are notably targeted for tax abuse here – learn that the latest “reform” plan of our CPSB makes darned certain we keep such tax abuse in place.
The plan is to keep and preserve (and honor, I guess) our highest in Louisiana property tax millage, killing any hope of offering would-be new residents a tax deal no so (more…)
Add comment December 18, 2014 3:39 pm
by Marion Marks
Tomorrow at sundown the celebration of Chanukah begins as Jews and free people around the world celebrate the symbol of light and openness in a holiday considered the victory of an oppressed people over tyranny. The symbolism is generally acknowledgment for a battle won and lighting candles for eight days stands for the Temple light that remained burning from a small jug of oil. Modern symbolism is generally in giving and receiving of presents as opposed to the celebration of the light.
That Temple light, symbolized by a menorah, remained on when a small amount of oil burned well past the expected expiration. Light today stands for transparency in our lives that often drifts under the radar because of darkness or those who seek to hide misdeeds, when we need enlightenment the most.
Western civilizations normally are held up as beacons of freedom and light, Americans embody this in the Bill of Rights. These rights should enlighten citizens and spread to those enslaved or (more…)
Add comment December 15, 2014 12:20 pm
The 2014 elections have placed many new faces in key leadership positions for the City of Shreveport and Caddo Parish – – a new mayor, four new councilmen and six new school board members. In the process one incumbent council representative was defeated and four incumbent school board members were sent home. And for the first time a local PAC (Political Action Committee) was organized to contribute to election efforts.
The school board and council elections reflect significant citizen dissatisfaction with the current operation of these government entities. Newbies on the Council represent a majority of the present body and the newcomers on the school board represent half its members – enough (more…)
Add comment December 12, 2014 4:00 pm
by Elliott Stonecipher
Looking deeper into the results of the November 4th / December 6th elections is the focus of this series of articles. The first installment focused on 2016 election cycle challenges to the Republican Party, as well as the ramped-up, deplorable use of race-baiting by some political partisans.
3. We need a straight-up traditional news media – more than ever.
Ollie Tyler was elected mayor last Saturday in my Shreveport hometown. Her election may long be overshadowed by information only now subject to public, if not official, consideration.
Although Ms. Tyler was once our local superintendent of schools and once our state superintendent of schools, none in the news media ever reported that early in her career she shot and killed her husband. This fact is all the more troubling since some in the news media withheld those facts from the public. (more…)
Add comment December 11, 2014 1:48 pm
by Marion Marks
Knowing governmental attitudes, concepts of administration and most of all the reality of our surroundings allows citizens to live our daily lives. When we encounter someone with broken bones, our expectation is that they go to the emergency room for help, and when we encounter a pothole we expect a call to local government to result in someone coming out to fix the streets. We defer to those we expect to have knowledge and ability and we expect to really have a fix for the issue.
Our problem is that Shreveport streets remain broken and a “Fix” seen in today’s news is not the one we really expected. The “Fix” appears to be a simple back-room deal based on whose problem it really was. “Fixes” today are a correction in attitude concerning how the problem was really defined. It’s similar to finding someone on (more…)
Add comment December 11, 2014 11:42 am
by Marion Marks
The December 6th election was a milestone for Louisiana and Caddo/Shreveport that will require evaluation for quite a while. Mary Landrieu’s defeat will be calculated by factions in many ways, but her shadow and the repercussions throughout the state will probably be re-measured for years.
Along with the election of new faces and the return of old ones, I expect the Landrieu defeat to reverberate through the system in all three branches of government, particularly with law enforcement and the prosecutorial system around the state. Political forces work on more than two levels, and the written and unwritten codes of enforcement and prosecutions seem to rely of backing and backbone at higher levels. Some (more…)
Add comment December 9, 2014 6:47 am