Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Superintendent leaves others feeling disgruntled.

Dear Nick:

Beware. Name calling is the first step down the road to a very bad end. It is a method of trying to demonize an "enemy" or "opponent." It indicates that you have no "facts" but merely "opinions" and are trying to switch the one for the other. It also indicates that you are trying to play one group of people off against another group. Don't go there.

The next step is scapegoating where the offending person or group is blamed for all of the problems of the bullying group. Again, this is an emotional appeal, not based on fact but rather relies on falsehoods and innuendo to create a smokescreen to deflect attention from your own mismanagement. If there IS something in the auditor's report that is uncomplimentary to the District, don't even think about blaming it on Mark. It won't stick.

After that comes encoding discriminatory behaviors into practices, rules, regulations, and laws. Example: yellow Star of David arm bands, Krystallnacht, etc. Hyberbole? Think again.

I suppose that you might also put Chris and I into your "disgruntled" category. Mr. Limon already started the demonization of us last year when he named us as a "threat" to staff and students at MMS and signed out the "no trespass" order against us. (BTW it expired on June 5. Don't worry; it's not worth the $40 in gas.)

My dictionary defines "disgruntle" as "to make discontented or cross." This indicates that the action of the verb is directed AT A VICTIM to make them "discontented or cross." Therefore, to be "disgruntled" means that an action has been taken TOWARD you to make you "cross." By definition, it does not follow that people become "disgruntled" for no reason; something has been done TO them. If you are saying that Mark or Chris or I or anyone else currently or formerly employed by the District are "disgruntled," you are ADMITTING that something has happened to us that would make us "discontented." You are ADMITTING culpability somewhere in the District that something was done TO us. Who did that, Nick? Check with Ken. Check with Marla.

The more I investigate this type of school management behavior, the more "disappointed" I am that it has become "standard operating procedure" in Edmonds and is so endemic to many schools across the nation. I am "disappointed" that so many administrators have so few management skills that they have to resort to these crude management methods. I have become "disappointed" that our legislators show little interest in crafting legislation to strenghten our current weak bullying laws.

The children deserve better management techniques from administration than what you are showing here. If the current administrators think that name-calling and scapegoating are appropriate tools of supervision, they need to "go somewhere else."

Remember, "it's what's best for the kids." Is that the type of behavior you want modeled to the children of the District?

Editor: Thank you to today's contributor.


Anonymous said...

"Who did that, Nick? Check with Ken. Check with Marla."

Add to that statement, Check with Tam. He causes problems by his bullying style too in an investigation. I can't wait for the day that he is fired.

Anonymous said...

I would be interested to know what role Tam played in the Piano Scam. He was specifically mentioned by Arnie Tucker as being "instrumental" in "orchestrating" this "grand piano" scheme.

Anonymous said...

I wondered about Tam for some time. He seemed to run hot and cold during his "investigation." However, when he stood in front of our colleagues, after Ken called us a "threat" to MMS students and staff, and informed/threatened them that they would be subject to discipline if they contacted us using District equipment, that placed him definitely on the dark side. Sure, they have control over their equipment and can make the rules regarding its use, but the "rule" was interpreted by staff to mean that ANY contact with us would lead to discipline. Bullying and threats of retaliation. What a way to run a railroad.

Fool me once, Tam...

Anonymous said...

Does anybody know why the warehouse supervisor was the focus of a second investigation just this past year?

Anonymous said...

Tam is the one that approached Marla to make the deal. He was never smart enough to figure out these things himself and needed his fellow Rotarian to help out another rotarian. Just ask him to add a column of number and see if he can come up with the right answer. And ask him why he knowingly kept approving payment for DeMiero's cell phone after retirement.

Anonymous said...

It is not hard to become a disgruntled employee when you work in an district where bullying is approved. We have a bully in BS department and 2 in SS dept. Nothing changes they continue to bully and it takes a toil on the depts. and the employees that put up with it every day. If your not bullied by your supervisor then its a co-worker who must be so unhappy that the only joy they get in life is making everyones elses life unbareable. The districts take on it is if you don't like it go work somewhere else and its just what the bully wants but believe me when one employee leaves the bully will work on someone else that's their life. So district you won't listen and please don't call me a disgruntled employee because I am not at least not yet!!!!

Anonymous said...

My understanding is that Nextel "Press to Plays" are almost as expensive as an FN cellphone. The only reason these FN things exist is to track employees whereabouts. Sounds like equipment that should be resigned to a Supervisor like....... AH! Gosh you know! Otherwise leave me alone so I can take care of the kids in the district. Nice seeing all of the districts hard workers at the Arts Festival today. You are the sole reason I hang on to my position. I Love you all. What a great day! Way to go MDE Marimba Ensemble!

Anonymous said...

Can I ask how many of you have taken more than 90 days off work in one year because of various and often mysterious complications, and then decided it would be a good idea to go out horseback riding and cry to the district that you are injured and can't come to work? Well, then include your husband in the scheme as well, and have him miss work also due to your poor judgement. It is more than time for rocking horse girl to leave the district as well. Unfortunately for the two of you, departing from the district will only be partial and temporary. You will have obligations to the district long after you leave. You involved the wrong person in your tumultuous tenure with the Edmonds school district. Thank You also for using one of my descriptive words, which was prior used as a label for you. Goes to show you always ride the bus. You did a great job in spelling, which tells me you only pretend to be...... Nevermind. I will see you all when you get back from whatever is ailing you now. I will repeat,"You cannot trust anybody these days." That is a mistake that you two continue to make. Unbelievable!

Anonymous said...

I hope to hell that the supervisors of hubby and wify are asking for all the doctor notes for documentation. Of course if you work in HR you know what doctors to go see and know they will write whatever you want on the note. Please get these two outa here sooner then 8/31. They continue to damage the district and are showing the district how dump the district is.

Anonymous said...

the district needs to look also in the HR dept. It seems the bullies are recruiting and yes they do have followers. I could name them all but I'll just say check out HR, AP girls, SS and BS and you will get the gang together. You may find them in a secret meeting in one of the ESC meeting rooms. they live and breath the mistreatment of employees and laugh about bad things that happen to good people. Sad but its called follow the leader or sorry what leader! May that is why they have formed their own little group with the bullies in charge. I can't call Nick or the board leaders for our district! Hitler also use the down and out to do his dirty work and it worked for him for alot of years! are we not smarter then that?

Anonymous said...

People in power positions get to set the rules and name the players. That's why in political contests, the object of the game is to define your opponent in the negative before s/he can clearly define themselves in the positive. Thus you get "flip-flopper" or "third Bush term" or whatever seems to be necessary to paint the opponent as a bad choice.

In this case, you are getting "disgruntled employee." If administration can name you before you get a chance to tell your side of the story, they have won. No one wants a "disgruntled employee;" they are stereotypically anti-social, grumpy, not humorous, untruthful, and whatever other negative you want to lay on them.

But the "disgruntled employee" can actually be someone who is trying to look out for the many-students and employees alike. They see injustice, incompetence, or willful neglect and they are trying to bring some justice and fairness to the organization. The powerful do not want that because it is a threat to their status. They have resources (money) and the ear of the media and use it as a mouthpiece for their statements to justify their incompetence.

Do you fight this? Or do you just walk away in frustration? Here's something to consider. Administration has the responsibility for the education of the children of the school district. Children learn by example. Which example do you want them to follow? Do you want them to think that bullying is OK or do you want them to treat others as they wish to be treated?

If the answer is the latter, then you need to "screw your courage to the sticking place" (Macbeth) and let it be known that you will no longer allow the bullying to continue, that you insist on competent, fair management of the district's resources, primarily its human resources which it is squandering. Let it be known that you will expect that anyone who bullies others will be disciplined and fired if they don't stop.

Tell other parents, co-workers, newspaper reporters and editors that you expect better than you are getting. Picket the ESD. Pass out flyers.

If there is no pressure on the administration, nothing will change. You must create and maintain that pressure. Don't expect that Mark can do it himself. Don't sit back and think the blog will do the trick. It will take effort from each and every one of you to affect the change necessary to correct the mismanagement of the district.

Yeah, I'm sitting here 230 miles away; it's "easy" for me to say these things. We gave a combined 25+ years to the students and parents of the district. We are not the kind of people who can turn our backs and say, "that's not my problem anymore." Paraphrase Tom Joad in "Grapes of Wrath": "Where there's a teacher being bullied, I'll be there. Where there's an adminstrator abusing their power, I'll be there." This is not a case of being vindictive, but rather a case of seeking justice.

This is a much larger problem than just Edmonds. We are here to fight the good fight for everyone who is suffering under poor, bullying administrators. But we can't do it alone; we need your help as well. To change the culture at Edmonds will require input from the many. That's you-parents and employees.

And if you don't want to stick your neck out or put out the effort, we can't help you.