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Subscript: Guiness Book of World Records? Chicago's White Elementary School loves to legally lynch disruptive children

Edward H. White Elementary School (at 1136 W. 122nd St.) is the kind of place that should easily stay off anyone's radar. The school is small (fewer than 200 children) and in a relatively calm community. But under its new principal — and in less than two years — White may make the Guiness Book of World Records.

Why? White is kicking out kids (or at least trying to expel them) at a record rate. In fact, White is making the CPS Law Department hold expulsion hearings for "bad" kids, at a rate that would result in 250 - 300 expulsions per year were the numbers "scaled up" (as guys like Ron Huberman likes to say) at one of the city's larger elementary or high schools. Over the past year, sources tell Substance, White's principal has tried to kick out (via the expulsion route) between three and six percent of her students.

The White Purge (White, by the way, is all-black; principal, too, so this isn't a racial thing but a power thing) may have something to do with rabid clout in two direction — the former AIO's office, on the one hand, and the CPS Inspector General (with clout at the Law Department), on the other.

Nobody downtown is telling White's principal to curb her habit of playing Queen of Hearts ("Off with their heads!") every time a larger child talks back to her. Nor is anyone telling her that maybe some subtlety (such as a decent IEP and some referrals, since many of these kids need help) would be in order.

But as long as Patrick Rocks (CPS legal chieftan, himself a product of City Hall) tolerates this kind of thing — and Rocks's staff don't demand more answers about these kids' rights — the White Purge will go on. If this were another context, and the players were differently hued, we'd probably be hearing about "Lynch Law" and the persecution of Black Children. In Chicago, though, this kind of thing is OK as long as the person doing it is ruthless and clout-heavy.

We plan to update this story at length over the next several months. First question we have: Why doesn't the Board of Education (and "data" master Ron Huberman) demand to know why some schools play "Off with their heads!" while others try to provide the legal specialized services to which many of these poor (but admittedly nasty and sometimes violent) children are entitled.

But, wait, this is Chicago, and clout (from City Hall to the alderman's office to some crevice in the CPS bureaucracy) counts more in the public schools today than the needs of special needs children, the law, or common decency.

So let's assume that if one partner was making more than $123,000 per year as a principal and the other more than $72,000 a year as an investigator, maybe certain things would be expedited -- from the CPS Law Department and other services.

And let's not forget, Chicago is now the model for the "reform" of public schools across the USA.

Right. OIC. 



Comments:

July 26, 2009 at 10:22 AM

By: Patricia Ann Breckenridge

CPS Teacher

I spoke with a couple of teachers from White and the problem seems to be students are not being staffed for their special needs, instead they are in regular classrooms where the teacher may or may not be trained to handle behavior disorders. I know expulsion is more of a punitive intervention as opposed to positive intervention methods; such as staffing, IEP, and Special Ed teachers.

July 26, 2009 at 10:41 AM

By: another teacher

It's because many don't go through with the paperwork necessary now

As a special education teacher myself, one of the things that I have noticed is that since RtI has come into play, we have had a dramatic drop in referrals to our special ed department. My theory... it takes so long to "document" what interventions have taken place (10 weeks or so) and then to meet to see the progress or lack of progress, decide on more interventions and document some more, all before a student can be tested. What happens is that the regular ed teachers (who many times have overcrowded classrooms) are so bogged down with the documentation of this process that they just don't go through it. Also, many times, even if they have gone through with the documentaion, it has been determined that the student doesn't need to be evaluated anyway. This means that the regular ed teacher has just spent countless hours on this process that was never going to be meant to be.

In the situation with students who have behavior problems, "BD" (behaviorally disturbed) is no longer a classification. In order to staff these students you have to identify them as emotionally/behaviorally disturbed (EBD) which is a much more specific disability with a seperate set of criteria as well as is tougher to prove. Not to mention that having a student classified as EBD has a bad stigma attached to it for teachers, parents, and the student.

There just seems that there is an easier way!

July 27, 2009 at 10:09 PM

By: just curious

Teacher

I have also talked to White Teachers. According to them, there a several students who are running rampart in the school. A handful of students are so disruptive that it's impossible to keep the building under control. These same students are attacking teachers and administration seems to take their side. These same students have been creating chaos in the building for three to four years. Someone should have done whatever it takes to give them services. Also I heard that White school has had an unbelievable drop in scores this year. I wonder with all this chaos that I've heard about and the drop in scores, will White continue to stay open.

July 27, 2009 at 10:20 PM

By: tatae

student

I know the situation at White School and it's awful. Students and their parents are begging ton get out of that place. The new principal is very confused. She doesn't know what to do with her school.

July 28, 2009 at 12:18 AM

By: zeta

There are more avenues availabe than IEP's and Expulsions

It amazes me that some people can justify amd minimize the instability that an expulsion has on children and their communities. Have you ever gone in poor and in some middle class communities and saw groups of uneducated children who at one point became high school "KICK OUTs."? These children have not fallen through the cracks, they have been pushed through the cracks by seemingly naive administrators who take jobs that they are unqualified for.They only thing they can do then is attack everyone in the building pretending that the instability is caused by the staff or students when it's just another example of very poor administrative leadership. It is obvious that the principal of White knows about expulsions but doesn't know about other resources available in the system and in the community for children having problems. Do her counselors, psychologist and social workers do anything at the school? I heard that this is one of the biggest problems at White. It has been reported that these people come and sit and do nothing all day. When teachers complain, administration says nothing. Every school needs all paid employees to work and do their jobs.If that happens the children will get the services they need. There's more to this than IEP's and Expulsions.

July 29, 2009 at 5:14 AM

By: D

administrator

It is very easy to critize. Have the staff. Communicated concerns to the principal? Since she is a new principal

A lot of the problems indicated seems to hav

e been occuring for years. It takes time with staff working together to create a school that meets the needs of all students.

July 29, 2009 at 9:17 AM

By: George N. Schmidt

Editor, SubstanceNews

If Ron Huberman's reign were "data driven" (which is a dangerous notion in the first place, as anyone except a Geek who still has a taste for chicken heads knows), he would have noticed the "Guinness Book" level of problems at the school from his first weeks. Remember, on April 3 he flamboyantly removed two South Side principals (at Julian HS and Oglesby Elementary) as a publicity stunt (his people called the TV crews which then parked outside Julian to see Huberman playing TOUGH NEW COP). According to the fairy tale legend spread (including in 'Newsweek" on line) about the Julian thingy, the new sheriff immediately knew about the problems at Julian and set out to solve them in a tough guy way. Clint Eastwood music in the background, etc., etc.

Cheap publicity stunt in the context. What it wound up as (and certainly this will be true down the road) was just another example of one of Mayor Daley's Great White Hope non-educator school bosses pushing around another black principal and black LSC in the interest of perpetuating the myth of the Miracle Management Team.

Sorry. Back to the Little School that Could (expel the most children instead of providing them with IEPs and services).

Being a "new principal" doesn't give you the power to suborn children as informants about the problems with teachers.

Nor does being a "new principal" give you the right to turn around and use your clout inside the IGs office (with help from the Law Department) to fast track expulsions for the children who just became part of your Rat Line.

That's poor management in anyone's book, from the first conversation ("tell me about how mean that teacher was to you...") to the last trap ("Off with her head!). I worked for a "new principal" (in fact, a couple) during my years in the real world of both data and children and none of them ever tried something as cheap and strange as that. "New principal" is no excuse.

But this is also about the myth of "data driven management" which is being rammed down everyone's throats via Chicago's corporate media as if that were a substitute for training, experience, and even human empathy. No child -- anywhere -- is a "data point". And the most traumatic events of the history of the past 100 years bears this out in a way that Ron Huberman might have understood better than many if he weren't so wrapped up in cheap PR stunts and the last row in every Excel spreadsheet.

Let's stick with White first. Of course, the only "data" available to such a nuanced (and some would save evil) manipulation of children (we're talking about an elementary school here) would be in the expulsion data (which Huberman had in front of him at the July 22 Board meeting). And in order to understand the meaning of the data in real time in the real world, you had to know enough about White Elementary School (from size of school to connections of principal) to ask the right questions about the "data."

Let me throw in a historical example, which we'll be seeing more of.

By 1950, when Israel was being established and establishing its educational system, a large number of the children showing up were severely undernourished, majorly traumatized, and unable to focus in traditional classrooms. At the time, the vast evil that created those children didn't even have the name by which we know it now. But I would love to debate anyone who promotes "data" over human beings that that event was one result of Social Darwinism and a previous incarnation of "data driven management." But enough of that for today.

Those children arriving in Israel -- by the thousands, many of the orphans -- were "underperforming" by Chicago standards and according to the "data."

Based on a very humanist (and appropriate) model for schooling human children in context, that government there developed a public schooling system (and philosophy) that ignored all of the comparative "data" and focused on the individual children.

Chicago has had "data driven" nonsense like what we're seeing here since 1995, when "Trending Up" became the watchword (based on an endless stream of data manipulations to make the mayor and his minions look good). Seven years ago, "The Wire" wrote the final chapters on this kind of insanity.

Obviously, the people who are prattling today in Chicago about "data driving" the system are ignorant of "The Wire" (the resemblance is spooky), the history of post World War II schooling in areas where the children were beset by traumatic experiences, and any real world experience in real classrooms of real schools in this city.

The example of the toxic combination of clout and stupidity at White is just one of hundreds of examples we'll be seeing over the coming years, as the sludge from the Duncan years mixes potently with the philosophy of the Huberman months. The only way governmental agents can continually recreate the major mistakes of past generations is to ignore history and pull everything out of context, then try to reduce all human reality to "data." That was what got us into the huge mess a previous generation had to clean up 60 years ago. That is what got us into that huge mess in the "global economy" we're just beginning to suffer from (and will have to clean up) now.

Why are we praising the same stuff here in Chicago, when the stupidity of it is so obvious -- except in this game of Blind Man's Bluff we call "school reform" (Chicago style).

July 31, 2009 at 12:25 AM

By: why me?

teacher

The principal @ White Academy has to be wondering why me? I met her at a job fair and she appeared to be charming. I asked around because she had an open position.However, was told that If you meet her you will think that she is one of the nicest people you've ever met. However underneath is one of the most vindictive persons you could meet. I did a little research on the school and found a tremendous drop in scores, enrollment and attendance. I am not surprised to find Student and teacher moral is very low. Do you think CPS will let her stay and continue to destroy the school? I've seen them specifically hire principals for that purpose. Then after she has totally ruined the school, they will come in and make it a turnaround school and fire everyone including her!

July 31, 2009 at 3:09 AM

By: George N. Schmidt

News editor

On subscripts, when we trust a source we run the story. It's not a major feature. The fact is, CPS at its July meeting accepted the CEO's report on suspensions and expulsions for the year. Every one of those represents a very complicated reality.

I served as a union delegate and security coordinator at one of the most dangerous high schools in the USA. Bowen lost seven students during the 1997-1998 school year; none in the building, but when we didn't stay on top of those realities the violence flooded all around us. So I am well aware that we need to expel students — rather than simply send them to Breakfast Club (often operated as patronage stupidities for politically connected preachers under Mayor Daley's Preacher Patronage programs).

But we also have multiple roles, one of which is to provide an education (including specialized services) to children in a timely manner, an in appropriate setting. The ruthless and mindless outsourcing of special education services to "not for profit" profit making outfits (check their executive salaries if you don't think these outfits are offering a profit to some people) is part of the systemic problem here. But more closely to each community are the ways in which the policies are implemented at the local level, day to day. At the July 22 Board meeting, the expulsion data were put into the record. And the "Student Code of Conduct" was (again) approved.

Both of those bits of data are meaningless without context, implementation, and review regularly.

That's why this story is so poignant. It's as tiny as the school it's about.

It's the little things that count.

But not if the "data driven management" that tries to substitute Power Point and Excel for reality gets in the way of the human beings.

July 31, 2009 at 12:54 PM

By: Best Teacher

Teacher

This article is very poignant and necessary. Many times administrators use children to fight their own battles. The sad thing is when these children who have been overlooked for years are then given the boot. There is no justification for administrators working in any struggling community to then began to attack children via the expulsion route. It adds insult to injury to find that a principal with clout in the IS office at CPS is using this clout to rid the school of "undesirable students". It's sad and everyone suffers. Students, parents, teachers and even the principal. Yes it would be a lot easier to get rid of the problem children, but where will they go? Onto the streets to become a statistic of violence. A predator or one to be preyed upon? !What will their lives be like simply because one person did not give them a chance. Ironically, when that person makes their money off the backs of these children (who in many cases are poor and "politically incorrect" in terms of their behavior), Isn't it better for us all to give the ten chances to a child who will eventually get it and become a functioning member of society? I will tell you the answer to that question because I am one of those children. Long ago I walked in their shoes. However my parents were smart enough to provide quality education for me. My mother worked 2 jobs to send her children to private school where we met the Best Teachers I've ever known. They were called NUNS! I am eternally thankful to them for the compassion they gave to us. We were little "politically incorrect" students

just like some of the least desirables at White and other CPS schools. Thank God I never ran into a principal like the White principal. Thank God that everyone used there clout to help me. I remember when I graduated 8th grade the principal at my school used her clout to get me and my sister a scholarship to a prestigious All Girls Academy.(Can you imagine two little project girls going to an expensive school like that!)That is what we use our clout for. Not simply to hurt children by getting rid of our problems. What I have learned as a teacher and parent is that when you are given Lemons Make Lemonade. ( Don't throw them in the trash) You just may find out that they are a valuable resource. I also believe that when a child walks in my room no matter what condition or position that child is in life , they were sent to learn something from me. Also, Every teacher that crosses the principals path is there to teach them a lesson too.

August 10, 2009 at 3:46 PM

By: Master Teacher, Too

All Part of the Master Plan

Having taught for over a decade in CPS and worked at schools on the far south, near south and west sides of the city, I can honestly tell you that the Miseducation of the Negro (part 2) is in full effect! The new breed of principals which CPS hires (especially those from various fasttrack, little to no teaching experience necessary programs) must have all taken a battery of psychological tests and failed! There is simply no way that they can all be this unbalanced!Even if you only have half a brain, you should realize that fostering an environment of fear and hostility will not bode well for you in the long run.

Instead of simply trickling down, it also flows up! Tyrannical administrations create unhappy teachers. Unhappy teachers lead to low morale and low tests scores. Low tests scores lead to the justification which CPS needs to close or "turnaround" your school. This way they can fire everyone, including the tyrant at the top-the principal!

So here's a little data-based, data-driven research for you. The top companies to work for in America, such as Google, have happy employees who receive incentives which lead to increased production and growth. Uhmmmm.... wonder why CPS wasn't on this list???

August 13, 2009 at 12:10 AM

By: Killing 2 Birds with 1 Stone

Student Expulsions

Expulsions T of students in the AA community has sank to an all time low. After reading your article on White School, I wanted to respond to the issue of students expulsions. I have heard that at White School, when teachers are not on board with the expulsion process, somehow they end up with erroneous accusations filed against them and validated by the CPS Law Department. The interesting thing is that students who have misbehaved in class and should be given referrals for specialized services are now used as star witnesses against teachers. You won't believe this but when the student is tricked into making false allegation ( because they are afraid of getting suspended) a "Let's Make a Deal" scenario emerges between the principal, the student and the CPS Law department . To add insult to injury,when the students are finished doing the dirty work, then an expulsion hearing is lined up for the student. The teacher then is asked to come and testify to help expel the student. There's something very sick and demented about this entire process. I wonder if this is a new strategy principals are using to get rid of tenured teachers and rid themselves of problem students simultaneously. It looks as if they are trying to "kill two birds with one stone". Also, many AA girls are going through the expulsion process. The numbers are increasing daily. Some research into the growing numbers of AA girls being expelled would be interesting.

August 13, 2009 at 6:58 PM

By: zeta

Part of the Master Plan part 2

Isn't it interesting how the "Willie Lynch " theory is still alive. The young principals

(NEW Leaders for New Schools) against the older tenured teachers. The AA AIO's against the AA teachers, the AA parents against the teachers. Now here's what has happened. Over 2,000 AA teachers were fired since 2005. Heaven knows how many were let go since 2001. ( That's when Renassauince 2010 started no data was collected back then ). Then in certain Areas Predominately AA, many AA principals were forced to retired by AA AIO'S or loose their pensions in 2006-2008. Now in 2009 many of the AA AIO's were let go. Now who's left, the children. Someones telling them to expel AA children. Then Mayor Daley will have accomplished his goal, to get all you "DARKIES" out the city! WAKE UP!!! and stop fighting each other!!!

August 13, 2009 at 7:12 PM

By: Zeta

Part of the Master Plan part 2 cont. ...,

OOps I forgot this. The only reason that the students are last to go is because of the Money. Federal $$$$$$$ are tied to them. As soon as the mayor has accomplished his goal which is to chase the AA's out the city and use them to get or attack each other....,(Just like the killing fields on the SS of Chicago,) he will bring in his new buppie and yuppie community. The teachers will once again be as good as APPLE PIE

(That's a LIE). When he no longer needs the Federal dollars ( Because he's already used the money to fix up Chicago for the new people). He'll have new teachers, new AIO's, Principals and students and they won't be African American. Now that's the MASTER PLAN.!! ARE YOU STILL SLEEPING?

August 13, 2009 at 7:47 PM

By: zeta

Part of the Master Plan part 2

Isn't it interesting how the "Willie Lynch " theory is still alive. The young principals

(NEW Leaders for New Schools) against the older tenured teachers. The AA AIO's against the AA teachers, the AA parents against the teachers. Now here's what has happened. Over 2,000 AA teachers were fired since 2005. Heaven knows how many were let go since 2001. ( That's when Renassauince 2010 started no data was collected back then ). Then in certain Areas Predominately AA, many AA principals were forced to retired by AA AIO'S or loose their pensions in 2006-2008. Now in 2009 many of the AA AIO's were let go. Now who's left, the children. Someones telling them to expel AA children. Then Mayor Daley will have accomplished his goal, to get all you "DARKIES" out the city! WAKE UP!!! and stop fighting each other!!!

August 16, 2009 at 8:22 PM

By: Just Curious

CPS Styled Gentrification

http://www.areachicago.org/p/issues/issue-1/position-on-renaissance-2/

Log on and read about the 2010 program. We are headed for this on a national level. This is only happening in large URBAN AREAS where the concentration of African Americans is very high.

Renaissance 2010 is not just a school plan. It is part of a much larger plan for gentrification and for moving out low-income African Americans and some Latinos from prime real estate areas, in fact from the city altogether. These are the areas where the proposed school closings are concentrated. Gentrification is a central source of profit for developers, banks, and investors and a key element in making Chicago a global city of increasing inequality in housing, income, quality of life, and use of urban space. STUDENT EXPULSIONS are part of the plan.

August 18, 2009 at 11:52 PM

By: Brainsplustwo

Honorbaly Terminated (Fired !!)

There is definitely a plan!? The high amount expellsions should raise a flag and justifies some kind of inquiry or investigation.

September 8, 2009 at 9:41 AM

By: Just Cuirous

White Schools inprecedented drop in 2009 ISAT Scores

Edward White Career Academy may go down again in the Guiness Book of World records for having the lowest drop in ISAT 2009 scores in the city of Chicago. Just more evidence about how incompetent principals, making ridiculous

decisions impact the lives of teachers and students. I wonder if CPS will continue to support this failing principal. I hope George re-visits this story now that the data is available.

According to the ISAT results for White School, there was a tremendous drop in scores school-wide. Data from the ISAT reveal a drop is 2009 Reading and Math scores school-wide from There was a drop in scores by grade level are listed below;

Reading Scores School-wide

2008 -2009 56.5-39.1

Third Grade-2008 -2009 60%-39.1

Fourth Grade- 2008 -2009 57.1-44.8

Fifth Grade- 2008 -2009 68.2-27.8

Sixth Grade- 2008 -2009 50.0 - 71.4

Seventh Grade 2008 -2009 36.4-18.2

Eighth Grade 2008 -2009 62.5- 28.6

Math Scores School-wide 2008-2009 56.5-37.4

Third Grade- 2008 2009 - 66.7-55.2

Fourth Grade- 2008-2009- 85.7- 40.7

Fifth Grade- 2008 -2009 50.0- 33.3

Sixth Grade- 2008- 2009 42.3- 42.9

Seventh Grade- 2008-2009 27.3-13.6

Eighth Grade 2008-2009 62.5- 28.6

September 8, 2009 at 10:19 AM

By: Just Curious

OOPs typo

Oops I made a typo it's unprecedented not inprecedented.

September 8, 2009 at 10:28 AM

By: Patricia Breckenridge

CPS Teacher

Why is there such a huge drop in ISAT scores when Renaissance 2010 is said to improve student performance? During this school reform for the sake of education, ISAT scores should be creatiing a new ceiling for standards. Personally I have spoken to a teacher from White who feels that this drop in ISAT scores is a result of replacing tenured and veteran teachers with said to be "cheap" teachers. This is a result of hiring inexperienced teachers with no developed pedagogy in curriculum, motivation, instructional strategies, and classroom management.

September 8, 2009 at 8:21 PM

By: Observer

Watch the Children Run Over Inexperienced Teachers

AMEN, PATRICIA.

September 8, 2009 at 11:50 PM

By: kugler

Scamism

duncan is now saying that the tests were dummied down, so what does that say if the scores drop?

Dummy administration!

December 17, 2009 at 3:36 PM

By: Nelicia James

The Task Master report card/from White Academy

You can call me one of the voices crying in the wilderness. I'm crying for a principal to be put in place, that will work with our children and not against our children. I pray for God to bring down the task master in white academy, and also those task master's unconcerned about our children. This educational system across the board is designed to keep our children in bondage, in our black city schools. I began to see a design being put on my child as the white academy principle insists on the officer to write up a police report even after the teacher whom my child was accused of threatening didn't want to write a police report. This particular teacher before this incident would call me with praises of my child saying he's a leader and has great potential, which I already know about my child. My child's grades are decent b's and c's and they can be even better when he learns to keep his mouth shut and let God fight his battles through myself his retired grandmother from the police force. the priciple calls me at night and tells me when my son comes to school she's going to call the police. Myself my mother and grandmother 3generations came to the school to resolve this cituation.My son has a short attention span as myself and people like us get defocus very easily. I've never had an accessment through these chicago school system neither has my son. My son met twice with one of white's school social worker's for about 10 minutes each time and the social worker says he just needs to make the right decision not knowing anything about him or his background. My son has had traumatizing experiences, which we tryed to explain time and time again to white's pricipal. My son was on the honor role in his beginning years at white academy, but know he walks in fear of being the next target since this new principal has been at this school. He fears expulsion, she's putting an X on his back and has never offered specialized in debt help concerning him emotionally. there was a 2009 expulsion hearing whereas not her but because of his grades those at the hearing suggested the smart program. He's constantly being targetted and put under the pressure to fail.

I am just another voice crying in the wilderness. 773-253-2768 call me for further comments.

December 18, 2009 at 1:19 AM

By: Zeta

You are not Alone Mom, We will help you!

The situation at White School is Bleak. I found out that the Assistant Principal left because of the violence at the school. She was the disciplinarian at White and was attacked.

The 6th grade teacher left 2 days before the A.P. left. The school is out of control and dangerous for staff and students.

The ISAT scores have plummeted. The attendance and enrollment are down. Not to mention that the Principal at White is incompetent and cannot run a school. The only strategy she knows is to run to her husband and his friends and use their clout to attack these children.

The principal at White has been successful at targeting children. I was asked to lie on a student to get the student expelled. When I refused the principal started retaliating against me.

I can handle myself but I am worried about the children. Three of my former students have been expelled and two are in a juvenile center.

We need help to expose this principal who hates the children that are not "politically correct. She is trying to purge the neighborhood children from White.

Please revisit this story George and talk with this parent. She has no one else to turn to.

December 18, 2009 at 3:05 AM

By: George N. Schmidt

Reporting the White story updates

I just sent a lengthy post to the CORE list and others (Substance staff) about how this story could be updated and covered. As you can see from the present upsurge in stories here at substancenews.net, we are presently trying to stay ahead of the stories we have reporters covering. Anyone who is on the CORE list can contact me about how to cover the story, but let me share an example of what that would require.

If we are going to report that two teachers (one, the assistant principal) have left the school (this school year?), I have to be able to report and verify names and contact those people. Nothing less.

Ditto if we are going to report children who have been expelled, suspended, or jailed ("three of my former students have been expelled, and two are in a juvenile center..."). We will not report the names of minors who have been victimized, but we do need to confirm each iteration.

Our verification process requires that the editor and the reporter both know the name and contact information for anyone who is quoted "off the record." And we are very careful about allowing people to be "off the record," since in many cases it can be a license for people to vent against enemies without any accountability. We have used it, but within that limitation. Our readers expect -- and deserve -- more than just rumor. And you'd want it yourself if you were the subject of an unfavorable news report.

And the reporter who covers the story will be edited by me and, finally, required to solicit a "reaction quote" from anyone (including the White principal) who is cited in the story. There will be no updates until we have the reporter and the story has been reported.

Meanwhile, I'll be following all Comments at Substance, but anyone who tries to make an anonymous comment using a phony e-mail address will wake up to find the Comment has disappeared. We will keep the e-mail address confidential, but our editors have to know how to reach people -- real people, not anonymous bloggers or anonymous anybodies -- who want to share their thoughts here.

The power of that parent comment above is that she has not only signed her name, but provided a contact information.

December 18, 2009 at 3:28 PM

By: Zeta

WHITE EXPULSIONS

George I can have the reporter talk with several parents and staff. I would like to do the story but it would be a conflict of interest for me and may be biased.

I really want the truth to come out and an objective report on the situation at White. I can convene a group consisting of LSC parents and teachers. Names, dates and times can be verified.

December 18, 2009 at 5:20 PM

By: George N. Schmidt

Call for further details...

Call me at the office and we'll talk. As I said, we're backed up miles getting stuff to the Website and subscriptions sold (mostly this holiday -- not; how many people do you know have paid for a Substance print subscription in the past month? Without them, we die...).

Substance also needs regular reporters. The pay and benefits are 80 percent of what goes to the editor in chief.

Let's talk.

December 18, 2009 at 7:05 PM

By: Margaret Wilson

retired teacher

Zeta I hope you do call George. This information needs to get out to the public and something needs to be done. Kids are getting hurt and it needs to stop.

My experience since Sept. is that schools are becoming a lot less parent friendly which is the opposite of what should be happening.

Margaret

December 18, 2009 at 10:19 PM

By: Zeta

Good Parents

I remember the teachers and principals that helped me to keep my three sons on track. They were wonderful. At that time I was divorced. I was teaching school, going to grad school and raising 4 children.

My sons are alive prospering and doing well. My daughter is also. Only because they were treated with respect and dignity at the schools they attended.

I have always wanted the same form my students.

There is such a sense of fulfillment when you realize that you had the power to make or break a child and you chose to make the child.

No matter how difficult children may seem, each and every one of them deserve to feel that they are welcome in the school.

That simple act of kindness and responsibility changes the life of children. It creates a spirit of belonging and respect for authority in the school and in the community.

When those in a position of authority abuse children, target them and systematically try to rid themselves of any child who presents even the smallest challenge to them, they are partakers in fostering a culture of hate in the community. They are showing children that adults are not honest and fair. They are also teaching children that they cannot trust authority.

The result of that is a tremendous disrespect for the system and even disrespect for students that try to adhere to the rules of the system.

These principals cultivate an environment of violence in the communities where they work.

Principals like the one at White create the black on black hatred and rage that causes innocent children like Derrion Albert to be murdered.

When the previous principal Dr. Garner was at White, she promoted and fostered an atmosphere that all children belonged at White.

The children were happy and no one was expelled. She clothed the children who needed clothing and fed those who needed to be fed.

Now White, a small school with less than 200 students is a place where anything goes and anything may happen.

One thing for sure children who don't possess charm and wit are targeted and treated in the cruelest manner.

December 19, 2009 at 9:30 AM

By: Margaret Wilson

Retired teacher/parent

Zeta, you are the kind of teacher that every child deserves. I wish you could be cloned and spread out throughout all the system. I just want to add that when schools disrespect the parents in front of their children then it sets a tone. Parents should have the right to come into the school as long as they don't interfer with the educational process and as long as there's no physical danger. For a police officer to arbitrarily change the rules and then tell the parent she has to listen to him because "he's the police" is ridiculous. It's also ridiculous to have to have police in an elementary school. The order in the school should be children (without them no one would have a job), parents (b/c without them there would be no children), teachers (b/c they can make or break the children), aides, social workers, etc. and then administrators. I don't think parents should make school rules but they should have input and they should always be treated with utmost respect unless they are causing danger.

When did things turn around?

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