Mamie Till Mobley

"There was an important mission for me, to shape so many...young minds as a teacher. God took away one child but...(gave) me thousands. And I have been grateful for the blessing." Mamie Till Mobley

Monday, January 31, 2011

Cathie Black solution to overcrowded schools in NYC: "could we just use some birth control?"

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Buffalo Shootings Series: Buffalo Familes Speak Up

Families of the victims shot in a massacre four dead, four wounded speak up at a forum organized at True Bethel Baptist Church on Ferry St., Editor and Vice President of the Buffalo News Margaret Sullivan meets with the families of the victims to listen & commence a dialogue why the newspaper wrote a story showcasing the criminal records of the loved ones who died august 14, 2010, in what the Black community viewed as racist and insenstive journalism appearing in the paper after the last one is buried. Video produced by Maria Rosa all rights reserved for the:

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Buffalo School Board appoints retired administrator to fill East district seat

Professor Theresa Harris-Tigg
The Buffalo Board of Education unanimously appointed Rosalyn Taylor, a retired school administrator,  to the vacant East District seat instead of Prof. Theresa Harris-Tigg who lost the seat by only 15 votes last School Board race in May.  A Buffalo News investigation  and report  contributed to the resignation of  former East District School Board Member Vivian O. Evans. But she U-Hauled herself out of town after she took the oath of office in July 2010. Meanwhile, the children in the East District left without adequate representation. Prof. Harris-Tigg one of five candidates interviewed last Thursday.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Theresa A. Harris-Tigg deserves to be the East District School Board Representative

Theresa A. Harris-Tigg, an assistant professor at Buffalo State College had challenged  the incumbent Vivian O. Evans  for  the East District School Board seat last May. And she almost won, except, former School Board Member, Vivian Evans who was on her way out of town for a job in the State of Maryland allegedly with the advise of her colleagues on the School Board, the faction supportive of the embattled Superintendent James A. Williams, decided she should continue running as a candidate for the School Board in the East District.  Evans beat Tiggs by only 15 votes, took the oath of office on July 1, 2010 and by August she was gone to work out of town. And now the same Board who contributed to this political farce interviewed five candidates for the vacant East District seat they were responsible for creating to keep Tiggs from winning.  So not only did Tiggs lose by 15 votes to  Evans but she is being interviewed by some of the same School Board members who knew she was leaving town and stayed in touch with her while she lived out of town. Evans cell phone records the Buffalo News retrieved clearly showed she lived out of town.  It is only fair that Professor Theresa A. Harris-Tigg should be the one appointed to the vacant East District seat.  And the circumstances surrounding what happened in the last School Board district seat elections perhaps an ethics committee investigate.

School Board candidate called for revisiting the idea of attendance teachers

Buffalo State College, assistant professor of English, Theresa A. Harris Tiggs interviewed last Thursday for the vacant East District School Board seat  "suggested revisiting the idea of attendance teachers to help get more students back in school." 
Nearly six years ago the Buffalo Board of Education laid-off 15 attendance teachers from a cadre of 18 teachers, leaving only 3 to address the absenteeism in the Buffalo schools. And two years ago when one of these teachers retired,  he  was not replaced  two teachers left to address the attendance problems in a school district of 33,000 students. 
Yet the schools designated as  the "persistently lowest performing" schools, especially the high schools had attendance rates lower than 74%. Still, the district officials balk at reinstating the attendance teacher now going into their sixth year of being laid-off unnecessarily and wrongfully. 
The attendance teachers the district laid-off on August 2005  were mostly contract/tenure teachers with a few probationary. How does one gut a cadre of  attendance teachers and not expect it would ricochet throughout out the entire Buffalo School district increasing absenteeism? Since 2005, attendance rates steadily dropped  yearly  in the  high schools until now in one school the rate was as low as nearly 73%. There is a clear correlation between the steadily drop in attendance rates at the high schools and the lay-off of the attendance teachers in the Buffalo schools, but the district still has not hired these teachers.

Interviews for the vacant East District Board seat last Thursday

For the first time ever in the history of the Buffalo Board of Education public interviews held for vacant district seats .  It happened last Thursday as five candidates interviewed for the East District seat vacant since former Board member Vivian Evans stepped down amid controversy.

Carl Paladino still, "Mad as Hell"

Former Republican candidate for governor Carl Paladino  one of the speakers at the Buffalo Board of Education meeting last Wednesday  criticized the Board and threaten to mobilized the community to pressure the Buffalo Common Council to withhold funds from the schools. 
 The Buffalo News released his speech to the public,  where he criticized  their, "remorseless neglect of our public school children." And said the Board, "should be shamed for its functional paralysis and inability to implement change necessary to deal with core problems..."   
He criticized the Board for extending the contract of Dr. James A. Williams, Superintendent of the Buffalo Schools because he withheld  a letter Donald A. Ogilvie, Superintendent of Erie I BOCES had written critical of school operations.  When he wrote the letter to Superintendent Williams, Mr. Ogilvie was the "educational expert"  on the Joint Intervention Team as required by State law in the persistently lowest performing schools. Paladino called it "clearly fraud" when the superintendent failed to disclosed the letter to the board. He said, "the Superintendent should immediately be discharged for cause and the Board should commence a national search a high-quality replacement.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Jared Lee Loughner

Sheriff  releasing to the media mug shot of Jared Lee Loughner, the gunman in the massacre Saturday in Arizona.

Judge Monday rules in favor of releasing Teacher Data Reports

The United Federation of Teachers lost the battle to stop the NYC Schools from releasing , "the rankings, known as Teacher Data Reports, grade more than 12,000 of the city’s 80,000 public school teachers based on how much progress their students made on standardized tests. They were developed four years ago as a pilot program to improve instruction; this year they have become a factor in tenure decisions.  Several news organizations, including The New York Times, have requested access to the data." A judge ruled Monday okay to disclosed them but the UTF appealing the decision the Teacher Data Reports withheld pending the next court decision.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

"Let the bodies hit the ground, let the bodies hit the ground...! video on Youtube of Arizona gunman

Jared Lee Loughner shot Representative Gabrielle Giffords in the head, an Arizona Democrat, killed six others, wounded about 19 on Saturday at a Shopping Center.  This is the eerie video many Americans viewed on Youtube  named, America: Your Last Memory in a Terrorist Country! that may possibly be the gunman. Also, NY Times cited "he had posted on his Myspace page at some point a photograph of a United States history textbook, on top of which he had placed a handgun. "

Friday, January 7, 2011

Facebook Group calls for an open and transparent school board.

A group on Facebook is circulating a petition on  the Petition buzz site calling for an open and transparent Buffalo Board of Education all of the time, not just some of the time. The group issued a statement on the petition: 
"The Buffalo School Board is electing an East District representative on Thursday, January 13th beginning at 5pm in City Hall Room 801. Though the Committee on Open Government ruled that these meetings and deliberations are public, the School Board is threatening to hold this meeting in private. We deserve an open and transparent government, and that includes the Board of Education. The School Board is responsible to us and we want our voices to be heard and understood by the board."
There is community wide support for  Buffalo State College English Professor and former Buffalo  public school teacher, Theresa Harris-Tigg to fill the vacant East District seat.  She lost to the former incumbent Vivian Evans by only 15 votes  in the  School Board  elections last year. And she would have won the seat but  the group Democrats for Education Reform  inundated the neighborhood in the East District  and other areas of the City with paid volunteers canvassing the streets distributing the campaign literature of the incumbents and pro charter school candidates.

Buffalo School Interviewing Candidates for East District Seat amid a whirlwind of controversy concerning public participation

Buffalo  Board of Education scheduled the interviews to fill the East District seat  for Thursday at  5 PM at a special meeting.  Former  School Board Member Vivian Evans stepped down amid a whirlwind of controversy regarding her whereabouts after she left town for a job in Maryland last July.  She finally resigned last month after the Buffalo News disclosed the records of her district issued cell phone.
Although the position is an elected one, district officials criticized for their secrecy  soliciting the resumes from prospective candidates, refusing to disclose the names to the public. James Kane, chief of staff for Superintendent James Williams criticized for withholding the names from the public while insisting the district didn't conduct the interviews in public in the past.  The Buffalo News published a ruling that cited  the decision of a Supreme Court judge in 1994 that stated the deliberations had to be done in public.
School Board Member at-large  Florence Johnson is on vacation during this period, complicating the interviews though she is participating remotely through " Skype, a video connection over the Internet,"according to the Buffalo News School Zone Blog. Also a problem is the faction on the School Board aligned with the superintendent allegedly attempting to control the process to select a candidate favorable to them. The group has been criticized as well for staying in touch with former School Board Member Vivian Evans, but failing to share any information with the other members not aligned with the superintendent.
Meanwhile, the children in the East District continue without representation while this political drama that started last May after the district School Board elections unfolds.

Whitney Tilson (3rd background)

Whitney Tilson (3rd background)
"Let’s be honest: we need a lot more well-off, well-educated white folks with a personal stake in both charter schools and education reform in general if we’re going to take reform to the next level, both politically and operationally.Whitney Tilson, hedge fund manager and major funding angel for the school privatizing Democrats for Education Reform, thinks there’s not enough rich, educated white folks.( Preaprez) click photo to his blog.

Arne Duncan

Arne Duncan
U.S. Secretary of Education, click photo