High School Justice Warriors or Useful Idiots?

According to a Ft. Myers News-Press article on March 12th, “more than 2,500 schools nationwide have signed up for a March 13th planned walkout to honor the victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting.” Adding, “the walkout also is meant to protest gun violence and support stricter gun laws.”

But who is behind this nationwide effort to “community organize” America’s youth to walk out of their classrooms to “support stricter gun laws”?

Continue reading “High School Justice Warriors or Useful Idiots?”

Jen Mitchell Admits CCPS Is A Dictatorship

 

Last week, we saw the Naples Daily News announce the candidacy of Jen Mitchell for Collier County School Board by hard-hitting Education Reporter, excuse me, CCPS propagandist, Annika Hammerschlag.

In typical Hammerschlag and Naples Daily News fashion, which was documented during the 2016 School Board election cycle of coordinating with Superintendent Kamela Patton to promote her hand-picked candidates of Stephanie Lucarelli and Erick Carter, the so called paper of record in Naples, dusted off their glowing articles (propaganda) of Lucarelli and Carter, then merely inserted the name Mitchell for the 2018 election cycle.

Of course, just like Lucarelli and Carter, Mitchell voiced frustration over Collier’s local education groups like Parents ROCK, Southwest Florida Citizens Alliance and Bolduc & Bracci who dare to accurately document Patton’s dismal D-Level and F-Level English Proficiency Scores, where 26% of Shadowlawn Elementary 3rd graders score 3 or better in English Proficiency, yet receive an “A” Grade from the Florida Department of Education. Not to mention, how over 94% of Collier County Elementary Schools cannot score above 80% in 5th Grade English Proficiency. (link attached)

Rather than caring to improve horrific Elementary English Proficiency Scores, which students never recover from prior to High School graduation, Jen Mitchell and the Naples Daily News opined:

“Mitchell voiced frustration over Collier’s vocal education groups who often speak negatively about the school system. It’s unsettling that these groups have ties to sitting School Board members”

“My concern is that, at a minimum, our representation on the board should be rooting for its success, and I don’t feel like that’s happening,”

You see, while School Board member Kelly Lichter has been attacked in a coordinated fashion by the Naples Daily News, Superintendent Patton and local Alt-Left Democrat ACLU front groups like the Coalition for Quality Public Education for stewarding Mason Classical Academy to a 92% 5th Grade English Proficiency Score, easily the top score throughout CCPS Elementary Schools, Jen Mitchell does not want to work with Kelly Lichter to bring Mason Classical Academy’s success to all CCPS schools, but would rather join current School Board puppets Lucarelli, Carter and Roy Terry to sing “kumbaya” and “collaborate” on continuing Superintendent Patton’s dreadful curriculum, over-testing and initiative to transform teachers into facilitators of digital classrooms.

Jen Mitchell’s website also let the cat out of the bag as to how CCPS is not governed by your elected Board Members, but rather, by an unelected triumvirate of Superintendent Patton, the Naples Daily News and their “corporate partners”.  Specifically, when Jen Mitchell described her prior work with CCPS, she stated,

“As a result of these activities, I was asked to participate in the Champions for Learning Connect Now Project, a series of workshops that led to what became the CCPS Strategic Plan.  I was proud to be among the parents, educators and community members selected to develop the Connect Now vision for our school district and path toward implementing it.”

In other words, Jen Mitchell was hand picked by Superintendent Patton and Champions for Learning, where the Board Chair is Bill Barker, Publisher of the Naples Daily News, to develop CCPS Policy as part of an self-anointed “council” or “committee” reminiscent of the old Soviet Union, where the English translation of “Soviet” means “council” or “committee”.

And now, Jen Mitchell wants to join current Politburo members Roy Terry, Erick Carter and Stephanie Lucarelli to ensure a rubber stamp majority vote in the affirmative on all future Dictatorial whims of Dear Leader Kamela Patton and the Naples Daily News.

I’m sure a PAC funded by Alt-Left Democrats to the tune of $250,000 is being formed, and glowing articles about her “collaboration” are being approved by Bill Barker as we write.

Is Our County’s Worship of Superintendent Kam Patton Enabling a Culture of Teacher-Student Sex Abuse?

In yet another Naples Daily News hero-worship editorial fawning over Superintendent Kamela Patton, today’s back-to-school piece is titled  “A Year Tough to Top as Collier Schools Open Wednesday.”

The editorial references the return of Collier County’s students and teachers “for a  year of challenges perhaps no greater than ‘Can you top this?'”  In typical fashion, the NDN editors regurgitate Patton’s talking points about the pyrrhic “A” grade the school district received this year (despite a myriad of “D” schools and 29% third grade reading proficiency at one school).

The editors then cite areas where the School District still needs improvement citing “teacher retention and housing,” convincing the Legislature to become “more supportive of traditional public education,” and — given that Patton’s annual budget has now crashed through the $1 billion glass ceiling — suggesting the “hire of an independent financial analyst for a risk assessment.”**

**NOTE:  the editors are covering for Patton here.  The “risk assessment” is Patton’s proposed watered-down review, so she can avoid the more intense “internal audit” which School Board members Donalds and Lichter propose.

Notably missing from the NDN’s list of proposed public school improvements is to cut down on the number of school teachers allegedly having sexual relationships with the students. 

Hey, NDN editorial board — where’s that proposed improvement?  How about some giving “kicks” to the School District?

  1. For the second time in the past 6 months, one of Patton’s high school teachers is alleged to have had sexual intercourse with a student.  The first time, it apparently got swept under the rug by the School District’s own investigation and the Collier County Sheriff Department.  As reported by the NDN in an article titled “Collier Teacher Reinstated After Investigation Into Sexual Allegations“, despite a written statement by the former student confirming the sexual relationship and allegations that one of Patton’s administrators interfered in the investigation, Kevin Rambosk’s Sheriff’s department refused to press charges.

When brought up as a topic at a school board meeting in July, Kam Patton scolded board member Kelly Lichter for her inquiry  in a “how dare you not trust me” manner, then reassured board members that Patton already had a half-hour late night call with her good pal Sheriff Kevin Rambosk to address the “article.”  As to the content of that discussion with Rambosk, Patton did not say.

Hey Kam – why in the world is the top school administrator speaking to the top sheriff??  Isn’t this like Bill Clinton talking to Loretta Lynch on the tarmac?  Why are the two “top dogs” talking, rather than letting the detectives and other trained professionals do their job?  Were you trying to get to the bottom of it with Rambosk — or were you instead chastising Rambosk for not having more control over his underlings, especially that pesky detective who gave your administration a black eye by calling out how one of your principals “interfered” in the investigation?

The Sheriff’s department refused to press charges in the first reported case despite a sworn statement from the alleged victim.  To little surprise, the School District’s own investigation “found no evidence to prove [the] student’s statements that she had engaged in sexual activity with the teacher,” and guess what — THE TEACHER IS BACK AT WORK AT THE HIGH SCHOOL!

Now, this week, it is reported that a male Naples High School teacher had sexual intercourse with a 16 year-old female student, and had been “sexting” at least two female students. (click for link). He faces “two felony charges of sexual assault of a victim 16 or 17 years old.”  According to the news report, the teacher has admitted to having sexual intercourse with the student.  BUT INSTEAD OF FIRING THE TEACHER, THE PATTON ADMINISTRATION JUST REASSIGNED HIM TO WORK AT THE MLK ADMINISTRATION BUILDING!

Keep in mind, this isn’t a case where someone is “innocent until proven guilty.”  The news report is that this teacher admitted to the sex acts.  AND PATTON HASN’T FIRED HIM?  What enabling message does that send to the next teacher?  “The District’s got your back?”

Given the School District’s obsession with social media, where is the District’s accountability for the fact that this teacher reportedly used Instagram and Snapchat to lure his alleged victims?  Where is the editorial board’s critique of the District’s excessive focus on social media, Bring Your Own Device, etc.?  Just look at the District’s web page — it’s not a government information page, it’s marketing and self-promotion – encouraging educators to waste time “tweeting” rather than teaching.

If Patton’s administration cannot police its own teachers operating within the public school buildings, how does the District plan to ensure the safety of its students involved in all of the community outreach, such as through “Future Ready Collier” which is a so-called “collaborative” effort whereby the District is strategically pushing our students out into the workplace where they will be mentored by the unvetted public?  (Future Ready Collier will “Provide community-based internships for 100% of career academy and other interested students.“)  At the August school board meeting when board member Kelly Lichter asked Patton about any school board policy on Future Ready Collier designed to ensure the safety of students being mentored at internships, administrator Peggy Aune struggled to provide any meaningful response identifying any such policies or procedures.

Where is the NDN editorial board on this topic?  Instead of asking such questions, the editors encourage this type “collective collaboration” hook, line and sinker — because guys like their own NDN President/Publisher William “Bill” Barker are a part of this educational mission drift.***

***Barker is chair-elect of the Naples Chamber, and board member of Champions for Learning — both part of Future Ready Collier.

It’s time for change at top – time to bring in someone who will focus on the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic, and time to focus on the four corners of school district’s operations, and student safety, without all of the distracting outreach.  And frankly, it’s time for a real news source other than the highly conflicted, collectivist agenda-driven Naples Daily News.  (Enter Bolduc and Bracci – so Get the Word Out.)

So where is the NDN editorial board talking about school district “improvements” in the area of protecting students from teacher-predators?  Kam Patton loves to compare today’s district scores and rankings to those of 6 years ago when she first arrived.  Click here for example.

If Patton likes to compare the District’s performance today to six years ago when she first arrived, then how about comparing the number of sexual assaults by teachers on students today, as opposed to 2011? Is Patton’s Communications Department tracking that statistic?


Superintendent Kamela Patton

Why is this relevant?  Because Patton came from the Miami-Dade School District where she was a former assistant Superintendent.  Patton worked there for 24 years.  This is where Patton learned on the job.  It is coming to light that Miami-Dade may be a breeding ground for teacher sexual assaults on students due to an enabling administration that had turned a blind eye during the period of Patton’s  tenure.  In a recently filed lawsuit, it is alleged that a Miami-Dade teacher repeatedly sexually assaulted a student.  This teacher had been accused of other incidents dating back to 2004, and yet the Miami-Dade administration  simply reassigned the teacher from one school to another, without being called to real account.

Here is a link to that lawsuit  (Warning to readers, there is a lot in it):

Complaint:  Jane Doe v. Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Aug. 2, 2017

Here is a link to two other news reports about that lawsuit and other recent teacher-student sex incidents in Miami-Dade:

“Are Miami-Dade Schools a Hunting Ground and Refuge for Sexual Predators?”, Dr. Rich Swier, August 9, 2017

“‘Jason’s Girls:’ Palmetto High Teacher Accused of String of Sexually Charged Relationships,” Miami Herald, August 3, 2017

Are the recent reports of Collier County teacher sex acts with students a harbinger of things to come here in our school district, similar what is coming to light in Miami-Dade?

Are recent events here in Collier County the result of lax enforcement by Patton and her administration?

Do they result from local leadership that protects the image of Patton and her administration at all costs, because Patton loves to “partner” with them and provide them with access to our school district?

Do they result from a local newspaper and sheriff’s department which Patton has strategically cozied up to over the past years, currying favor with them so that they will not do their jobs and hold Patton’s school district to account, either by news reporting or proper law enforcement?

Perhaps the NDN editors and others in our community also have some responsibility for enabling these incidents.  Perhaps their worship of Superintendent Kamela Patton is coming home to roost.

 

 

Meet The New Boss, Same As The Old Boss

Stop us if you have heard this before, but the Sunday, July 30, 2017 edition of the Naples Daily News included an Editorial (“Collaboration makes Collier ready for children’s future”) which described how wonderful it is that Collier County is home to an array of benevolent nonprofits and foundations working to collaborate with government and business to improve our children’s future, because apparently, we parents have no idea what is best for our children’s future.

Specifically, the Editorial lauded Champions For Learning as the nonprofit education foundation in Collier which is facilitating the teamwork of six initial partners that graciously agreed to work together on educational matters in June 2015. Others included the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce, United Way of Collier County and the Naples Children & Education Foundation, sponsors of the Naples Winter Wine Festival.

Does this “children’s future” roll-out sound eerily similar to the Blue Zones School Pledge roll-out where self-anointed “community leaders” like Naples Daily News Publisher, Bill Barker and Collier Schools Superintendent, Kamela Patton joined the Blue Zones Steering Committee, created by NCH CEO Allen Weiss, to force the authoritarian Blue Zones School Pledge on our children?

Surely you remember the Blue Zones School Pledge roll-out where our benevolent nonprofits, foundations and government officials told parents that Blue Zones was “all about choices”, when the actual school pledge stated the following:

“Ensure foods and beverages served outside of school hours meet the USDA Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards, including after-school fundraisers, concession stands at sporting events, etc.”

“Prohibit the sale and consumption of soda and other sugar sweetened beverages on campus, including those brought from home.”

In other words, benevolent Blue Zones was really all about authoritarian control to force our children to only eat Michelle Obama’s government approved food, and eliminate individual choices, including those of parents.

Further, like the Friday The 13th movie series, this “children’s future” roll-out is being forced on parents and taxpayers by the same self-anointed “community leader” cast of characters which brought us the authoritarian Blue Zones School Pledge.

For starters, Bill Barker not only serves as Publisher of the Naples Daily News “children’s future” Editorial, he also serves as Board Member, and Past Chair of Champions for Learning, the nonprofit spearheading this “children’s future” initiative. Additionally, since Bill Barker is the Chair-Elect of the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce, a leading partner in this “children’s future” educational initiative, the fact that this “children’s future” initiative is being sold as a broad-based, community wide project is Very Fake News.  In reality, it represents the “collective decisions” of a select few elite members of our county who take it up on themselves to impose their will on our children.

And to eliminate all doubt that this “children’s future” educational roll-out is Very Fake News, as it will do nothing to help raise Collier School’s D-Level and F-Level Reading and Math Proficiency Scores (click here for link), is the fact that the current Board Chair of Champions for Learning is a retired Time Warner executive, parent company of CNN, the fakest-of-all fake news organizations!

A Billion Dollar Fiasco

“The trouble with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money”

— Margaret Thatcher

If anyone needed more proof on why tax-and-spend Superintendent Kamela Patton partnered with tax-and-spend Collier Democrats, the Teachers Union, ACLU front groups like the Coalition for Quality Public Education, and of course, the Naples Daily News to get Stephanie Lucarelli and Erick Carter elected to the Collier County School Board, then look no further than Kamela Patton’s latest proposed School Budget to fund her severely bloated administration.

On the backdrop of last year’s budget, which increased your taxes by $90 Million, Patton’s current budget plans to increase your taxes by another $74 Million, or a breathtaking $164 Million of increased taxes over the last two years alone.

That’s right, Superintendent Patton’s new budget wants to confiscate over $1.05 Billion (with a B) of your hard earned money this year to produce D-level and F-level student achievement results.

No wonder Stephanie Lucarelli and Erick Carter parroted Superintendent Patton’s fake news line that she is positioning the District to be debt free in 10 years on the campaign trail. Should not be that hard when Patton’s puppet rubber stamp School Board of Terry, Lucarelli and Carter plan to raise your taxes by a projected $820 Million over the next 10 years to produce Reading and Math Proficiency results below the Mendoza Line.

 

Beware the Terms “Civility” and “Collaboration” — They Mean Disenfranchisement

On July 13, William “Bill” Barker and his fellow Naples Daily News editorial board members resumed their cowardly effort to destroy Collier school board member Kelly Lichter because they are afraid that she will expose the failures of Collier County’s local deep state.  You see, Lichter’s Mason Classical Academy is running circles around Superintendent Patton’s traditional public schools, and Patton and Barker are fellow Naples Chamber pals.

Local elitists such as Barker cannot tolerate their lack of control over a principled local public official like Lichter– and thus they are attempting to destroy her just like the national deep state is trying to destroy the non-conformist President Trump.

In an editorial describing the need for “civility” and “collaboration” among local elected officials, Barker’s editorial board concludes that Lichter is “boisterous” and thus a problem.  Citing no evidence whatsoever, the editorial board asserts that “while four of the five board members have demonstrated an ability to respectfully debate and disagree, member Kelly Lichter is the boisterous one.”

Bolduc & Bracci in recent weeks have exposed the Naples Daily News’ bogus attacks on Lichter,  leaving them only with yesterday’s pathetic attack on Lichter’s “civility.”

To back up their feeble claim, Barker and his editors dredged up a quote by the establishment-conformist school board member Stephanie Lucarelli saying “I’m sorry you need to be so disrespectful.” (The editors refer to Lucarelli as “affable,” perhaps due to Lucarelli’s propensity to laugh at herself while straining to complete a sentence while on the dais.)

The elitist NDN editors apparently think so little of their readers’ intelligence that they do not even provide the background for the exchange between Lichter and Lucarelli.  Did Lichter have a basis to be disrespectful  towards Lucarelli?   If Lichter felt that Lucarelli was once again attempting to undermine Mason Classical’s success, then Lichter had every right to defend that school’s students and families from Lucarelli’s institutional bullying from the dais.

A “real” news organization would inform the reader on that background.  But not the Naples Daily (Fake) News.

The attack on Lichter is unfounded. She is labeled “boisterous” and “uncivil” only because that is the narrative the NDN has painted.  If you listen to Lichter’s message repeated over-and-over at school board meetings, she wants to focus only on education, and get rid of the special interests of Superintendent Patton and her pals, such as Blue Zones and the outsourcing of other “community partnerships,” which take the School District’s eyes off the ball of reading, writing and arithmetic — those basic lessons that are driving Mason Classical’s success in the classroom.

Watch for yourself – Does Kelly Lichter sound “boisterous,” or does she simply want to keep the District out of the pet projects of Bill Barker’s pals such as NCH/Allen Weiss’ Blue Zones Project?

So beware the NDN’s use of the terms “civility” and “collaboration.” This is liberal deep state code for “conformity” to the establishment.  Barker and his high-ranking pals at the Naples Chamber have set their own self-serving agenda such as Blue Zones societal control for the benefit of NCH Hospital, tax increases that will mainly serve the county’s largest land owners, outsourcing school board governance to a nebulous Chamber-hatched organization called “Future Ready Collier,” and retaining a Superintendent who provides them with access to the School District, its students, and its $1BB budget.

Note to Readers:  Are you aware that NDN President Bill Barker is also the Chair-Elect of the Naples Chamber?  Does anyone think that is healthy for our community?

The local establishment cannot tolerate someone such as Lichter — who is a threat to their gravy train.

Government officials who do not conform to Collier County’s local deep state will be branded “uncivil” and even “boisterous.”  By contrast, those conformist politicians such as Lucarelli who mindlessly do the deep state’s bidding with their lock-step voting will be deemed “affable.”  Better terminology might be to refer to the likes of Lucarelli as our local establishment’s “useful idiots.”

We the People know that our elected public officials are not there to be “civil” or to “collaborate” if that means that they must set aside their own principles — those same principles our elected officials pledged to their constituents that they would follow once voted into office.  The establishment’s demand for “civility” and “collaboration” are really attempts to bully our local elected conservative officials into silence.  They are terms designed to disenfranchise We the People, in pursuit of the local establishment’s self-serving agenda.

So as we move into the 2018 election season, beware what you read in the Naples Daily (Fake) News, particularly when the article mentions “civility,” “collaboration,” or the “Naples Chamber.”

Those candidates who are “uncivil” just might be the best of the bunch.  And that which the Naples Chamber says is necessary should be doubted.

Why Johnny And Juan Can’t Read

Notable books, including Noble Prize winning Joseph Stiglitz’s The Price of Inequality, lay out in disheartening detail the growing inequality of income and opportunity in the United States, along with the decline of the middle class.

Early in the twentieth century, a democrat, liberal, progressive and socialist inadequate conception of education became dominant in the United States. It included a belief in the unimportance of factual knowledge, a decline in reading readiness based on an incoherent, less challenging literature (often in the name of multiculturalism) and a corresponding belief in the importance of training the mind through hands-on practical experience, much like CCPS Superintendent Patton’s corporate run “Pathways” goal to educate Collier schoolchildren via digital learning and tenuous “global responsibilities” and “21 Century Workforce Skills”.

In the 1920s and 1930s, these ideas began spreading to teacher-training institutions. It took two or three decades for the new teachers and administrators to take over from the old and for the new ideas to revolutionize schoolbooks and classroom practices. The first students to undergo this new schooling therefore began kindergarten in the 1950s and arrived in 12th grade in the 1960s.

Unfortunately, their Test scores showed the impact of socialist led education ideas. From 1945 to 1967, 12th-graders’ verbal scores on the SAT and other tests had risen. But then those scores plummeted. Cornell economist John Bishop wrote:

“the historically unprecedented nature of the test score decline that began around 1967. Prior to that year test scores had been rising steadily for 50 years.”

Some scholars thought that the precipitous fall of verbal SAT scores simply reflected an increase in the percentage of low-income students taking the SAT. But since it was observed that the same downhill pattern had occurred in verbal scores on the Iowa Test of Educational Development—a test given to all Iowa high school students, who were 98 percent white and mostly middle-class, many argued that the declining effectiveness of American schools was a leading indicator for the shrinking income of the American middle class. The evidence today suggests that people who spoke out against democrat-run education programs were right. The decline in the educational productivity of our schools tracks our decline in income equality.

Later, several scholars showed that the decline of the verbal SAT scores was indeed correlated with a dumbing-down of American schoolbooks and literature books. These scholars found that publishers, under the influence of progressive educational theories, had begun to use simplified language and smaller vocabularies which demonstrated that the dilution of knowledge and vocabulary, rather than poverty, explained most of the test-score drop.

In 1965, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) became the educational vehicle for the civil rights movement and Great Society with the aim of narrowing achievement gaps by providing every child with a fair and equal opportunity to achieve an exceptional education. The federal government sought to realize that aim primarily by throwing money and regulations at the public school system. In other words, it created a government monstrosity which contributed Dewey-style progressive education and “critical pedagogical theory,” a Marxian approach to social justice that

“identifies economic inequities caused by capitalism as the primary reason for the existence of achievement gaps.”

Interesting, since 1965, trillions of your tax dollars have been spent in the name of progressive social justice education, yet The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Long-Term Trend Assessments in 2012 found that achievement gaps for 17-year-old black and Hispanic students have not improved since the early 1970s.

Chicago economist James Heckman argued that the skill gaps of disadvantaged children from poor family environments at the end of high school

“are basically the same gaps that were there when they entered Kindergarten.”

Even the New York Times commented that:

“Children of mothers who had graduated from college scored much higher at age 3 than those whose mothers had dropped out of high school, proof of the advantage for young children of living in rich, stimulating environments.”

More surprising is that the difference in cognitive performance was just as big at age 18 as it had been at age 3.

“School neither increases nor reduces it.”

E.D. Hirsch Jr. has argued for 30 years that the key to building students’ vocabularies, and thus their ability to read, learn, and hold a well paying job in life, is content knowledge.

Far from being an elitist East or West Coast Democrat, he insists, a high level of literacy is the path to educational equality and full citizenship for the nation’s minority groups.

“Cultural literacy constitutes the only sure avenue of opportunity for disadvantaged children,” Hirsch writes, and “the only reliable way of combating the social determinism that now condemns them to remain in the same social and educational condition as their parents. That children from poor and illiterate homes tend to remain poor and illiterate is an unacceptable failure of our schools, one which has occurred not because our teachers are inept but chiefly because they are compelled to teach a fragmented curriculum based on faulty educational theories.”

“The best schools and teachers have already taken some of the steps that I’ve advocated.”

Indeed, which brings us to the central theme of our post, and that is, isn’t it interesting the Naples Daily News failed to report on the recently released 3rd Grade Reading Proficiency Scores for Collier County Public Schools, where roughly 70% of Collier County Elementary Schools suffering under Superintendent Patton’s progressive dumbed-down curriculum scored D-level or F-Level in percentage of 3rd graders scoring Proficient in English?

But even more interesting, the Naples Daily News failed to report that Mason Classical Academy, a Charter School which utilizes E.D. Hirsh’s Core Knowledge Curriculum, scored 90% in 3rd Grade Proficiency, the highest of any Elementary School in Collier County.

Superintendent Patton’s soul crushing curriculum based on failed progressive education quackery, is crushing the future of the vast majority of Collier County schoolchildren, and worst of all, her curriculum is hurting less fortunate minority students the most, the very group she pretends to care for while flushing $976 million of your tax dollars down the toilet on an annual basis.

National Writer Recognizes Mason Classical’s Phonics Reading Success; Slams District and Naples Daily News for Interference

Alex Newman, author of “The Newman Project” education blog, international writer for The New American, and co-author of the book “Crimes of the Educators,” published a post today titled “Charter School Rejects Common Core and Ranks #1.”

Newman exposes how Mason Classical Academy has dramatically outperformed Collier County’s traditional public schools in third grade reading proficiency by utilizing phonics rather than the Common Core method of “whole word” reading.  Writes Newman:

“As if more evidence was needed of this, the recent Florida Standards Assessments results from Collier County, Florida, make it perfectly clear. One school, known as the Mason Classical Academy, shines bright in the district. It scored number one in English Language Arts (ELA) in the county, with 90 percent of its third graders scoring proficient.

By contrast, just 58 percent of third graders in the county were proficient, even using Common Core’s dumbed-down metrics.”

Newman also correctly noted what Bolduc & Bracci have touched on here locally in articles titled Master of Puppets and Daily News Propaganda Machine  – that Mason’s success is a threat to Superintendent Kamela Patton and her traditional public school system.   Thus, instead of looking to emulate Mason’s success, Patton’s administration seems more interested in placing road-blocks in the way of Mason’s success by requiring it to change its teaching structure to be more aligned with Patton’s pet globalist “AdvancEd” accreditation organization (Patton has an admitted conflict here as she also serves on AdvancEd’s Florida state committee).

In other words, rather than competing against Mason Classical by improving third grade reading scores in the traditional public schools, Patton seems more interested in diminishing the competition.  And the Naples Daily News has been played right along.  This did not escape Newman’s notice:

“Anyone who follows government schools and the education establishment will probably not be surprised to learn that, of all the schools in Collier County, MCA alone is being targeted for attack. From the district superintendent and racist kooks on the left-wing fringe to the local establishment propaganda organ known as the Naples Daily News, owned by “fake-news” publishing giant Gannett, it seems like everybody is after MCA.

Why would the local establishment target the one school that is at the top of the charts? Well, probably because MCA’s proven success exposes the educational establishment and its true agenda. MCA shows that children can, indeed, be properly educated. And it shows yet again that the national illiteracy crisis is the result of quack pedagogy in the government schools.

“Kudos” to Mr. Newman for recognizing Mason’s success here locally, and “Kicks” to the Naples Daily News and the District for attempting to undermine Mason’s success.

Local “Respected Educational Leader” Ed Morton Says Women Make Less Money Due to Genetics

Ed Morton, who just last week was touted by the Naples Daily News editorial board as a “respected educational and civic leader” as a means to justify a contract extension for Superintendent Kamela Patton by his endorsement, has been exposed by the national media for his assertion that women make less money than men due to “genetics.”

As reported by Politico on June 20:

A state higher education official said colleges should teach women how to negotiate better salaries, saying there may be a “genetic” explanation for why female graduates of the state’s public universities make less money than their male peers.

Board member Ed Morton, who was appointed by Gov. Rick Scott, made the remark during the State University System’s board of governors meeting on Tuesday when members were discussing ways to close the pay gap between men and women graduates of Florida schools.

The Politico article went on to quote Morton:

“Something that we’re doing in Naples [with] some of our high school students, we’re actually talking about incorporating negotiating and negotiating skill into curriculum so that the women are given — maybe some of it is genetic, I don’t know, I’m not smart enough to know the difference — but I do know that negotiating skills can be something that can be honed, and they can improve,” said Morton, a retired investment manager who chairs the board’s strategic planning committee.

“Perhaps we can address that in all of our various curriculums through the introduction of negotiating skill, and maybe that would have a bearing on these things,” he said.

As usual, Bolduc & Bracci was well ahead of the curve, prophetically calling “foul” on Morton as a “respected educational leader” in a June 16 post.  You can count on B&B to “level the tilted playing field” against the biased and oftentimes false reporting of Collier County’s’ worn-out traditional “paper of record.”

B&B agrees with Morton that his comment demonstrates that he is likely “not smart enough.”   B&B also believes that just as negotiation skills can be “honed,” so too can one’s ability to think on one’s feet without putting one’s foot in one’s mouth.  Perhaps Morton needs some continuing education of his own.

Morton’s comment slamming women for their “genetic” weakness was so toxic that Governor Rick Scott, who appointed Morton to the state university board, ran for cover:

Asked for a response, Scott’s office sought to distance the governor from his appointee’s comment.

“As a father of two daughters, the Governor absolutely does not agree with this statement,” his spokeswoman, Lauren Schenone, said in an email to POLITICO Florida.

In his comments above, Morton refers to a new high school program in Naples.  It seems he is referring to a very sketchy school district program called “Future Ready Collier,” which most of us know nothing about and was implemented by Patton into the school district strategic plan in May 2016.  It was first hatched by Patton and her pals at the Naples Chamber and its affiliate organization, “Opportunity Naples.”  “Future Ready Collier” is some type of creepy “mentor” program where  local business men and women team up with students in an effort to teach them about business and life.  B&B has not seen any process by which the school district vets these mentors.  What could possibly go wrong?

Morton’s mysogenist comments about women’s “genetic” business inadequacies should greatly trouble us all.  If Governor Scott chose to distance himself from Morton, should not Superintendent Patton and the School District do the same?  Of concern to Bolduc & Bracci is that the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce is a partner in “Future Ready Collier.”  This includes Ed Morton as an honorary director.  Parents and the public should be assured that Collier County’s students are not subjected to Morton’s mysogenist views about women’s “genetic” predisposition to underachieve in the business world.

This is not the first friend of Patton who has run into trouble this year.  In a strangely parallel fact pattern reported in the Fort Myers News-Press on April 13, 2017 titled “Why Didn’t the FDLE Investigate Two FGCU Trustees?”, fellow local elite Chamber member and university board of trustee member Dudley Goodlette was very curiously given a free pass by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for alleged violations of the Sunshine Law.

Dudley Goodlette himself said he did not realize he was violating the Sunshine when he was meeting directly with a fellow board member to discuss official business behind closed doors.  Said Goodlette:

“I just wasn’t thinking of this being a conversation that had anything to do with our relationship as board members,” Goodlette said. “It was sorting out the issues that we were dealing with on the strategic plan.”

*  *  *

“There was nothing secretive,” he said. “It was an honest error on my part not to have realized that (it should have been a public meeting).”

That’s funny, Dudley — we thought you were an expert in the Sunshine Law, considering how you were specially appointed as “neutral mediator” in the case of Bracci vs. Patton regarding alleged Blue Zones Sunshine Law violations.  Dudley — an attorney himself — apparently had no problem serving as a “neutral” despite having served on the Blue Zones Committee, as well as several other committees alongside Superintendent Patton.

Patton even awarded Dudley with “Principal of the Day” honors about a month after his service as the “neutral” mediator in the Blue Zones case.

Dudley Goodlette with Superintendent Patton – a Neutral Mediator??

Ed Morton and Dudley Goodlette – two peas in an elite pod.

The only remaining question we have is whether Morton will again make his once-annual pilgrimage to the Admin Building in June 2018 to pander for another contract extension for his pal Kam Patton…….or whether Patton will instead banish Morton to a principal assignment in Immokalee for bad behavior.

Note:  Ed Morton is now Managing Director at Wasmer, Schroeder & Company, Investment Advisors

Master of Puppets

By Bolduc and Bracci

It has been 31 years since the band Genesis released their classic “Land of Confusion” video starring puppets, and with the printing of two Naples Daily News hit pieces on Kelly Lichter and Mason Classical Academy this week, perhaps an updated video should be created starring School Board members Roy Terry, Eric Carter and Stephanie Lucarelli, along with Daily News reporter Annika Hammershlag, as puppets of Superintendent Kamela Patton and her billion dollar failing regime.

Overall, within the last two months, U.S. News and World Report has reported the average English Readiness Score for Collier County High Schools is 55%. Couple this with the recent release by the State of Florida of 3rd grade English scores which demonstrated over two thirds of CCPS run Elementary Schools are either D-Level or F-Level in English proficiency, and the Patton regime is in need of some serious damage control.

Given this academic horror show, and the fact Mason Classical Academy scored the highest in Collier County in 3rd grade English proficiency at 90% by not following Patton and AdvancED’s destructive Digital Learning curriculum, it appears Patton has cranked up her Mighty Wurlitzer Propaganda Machine with the Naples Daily News; all scripted and acted by her puppets Terry, Carter, Lucarelli and Hammershlag, to create a fake news controversy at Mason Classical Academy in order to deflect the public’s attention away from her academic disaster zone.

To be more specific, Naples Daily News reporter Annika Hammershlag ran two hit pieces this week claiming Kelly Lichter was financially damaging Mason Classical Academy by resisting clear financial extortion by former Mason board member, Matt Mathias, for not accepting a $1.38 million loan at 9 percent interest over five years if Lichter would resign from Mason’s board.

The Naples Daily News and Annika Hammershlag owe an apology to Kelly Lichter and Mason Classical Academy for the following deceptive reporting practices:

  1. Hammershalg never revealed it was Matt Mathias who triggered Mason’s special board meeting in the first place to consider a $1.38 million emergency loan because Mathias sent a demand letter that $1.0 million of existing loans were being called in due to undocumented and unsubstantiated claims that his clients were unhappy with Kelly Lichter’s leadership.
  2. Hammershlag greatly exaggerated the potential financial damage to Mason. Relying on then-board member, Byron Donalds, who is now a state legislator, stating that the higher interest loan – 14 percent compared to the 9 percent offered by Mathias – would cost the school nearly $120,000 more a year. That is ludicrous, the annual difference between 14 percent and 9 percent on a $1.38 million loan is closer to $60,000, not the exaggerated $120,000 claimed by Byron Donalds, and parroted by the Naples Daily News.
  3. What happened to Ethics and standing up to financial extortion? Do Mason’s Bylaws state their board will be selected by whoever comes up with million dollar loans at the lowest interest rate?
  4. Since the Daily News disclosed this financial debate occurred in May 2016, why did they sit on the story until June 2017, and publish the first story on the morning of the CCPS Board Meeting where Mason’s Charter Contract was under consideration for extension?
  5. Oh that’s right, so Roy Terry, Eric Carter and Stephanie Lucarelli could express their “concerns” with extending Mason’s contract later in the evening.
  6. Then, to put icing on the Daily News’ cake of gutter journalism, no loan for $1.38 million was ever taken out by Mason in May of 2016. Not at 14 percent, not a 9 percent, never. That’s right, Annika Hammershlag and the Daily News ran two hit pieces claiming Lichter’s management style could potentially cost Mason over $1.0 million, when the loan in question never materialized or existed.

If not for Kelly Lichter’s insistence on standing for principles in the face of treachery, Mason Classical may not have had the fortitude to withstand the strong-arm tactics of Superintendent Patton and District General Counsel Jon Fishbane who attempted to force Mason to agree to accreditation review by the globalist AdvancEd organization, which would have thrown Mason’s classical-Constitutionalist Hillsdale College education model out the window.

Led by Lichter who has repeatedly shown a Thatcher-like steely spine, Mason stood up to the Patton-Fishbane onslaught, and correctly told them to stuff it.

The District should focus on improving its own disastrous educational performance – not meddling with Mason’s success.

Such a shame Superintendent Patton does not embrace Mason Classical Academy’s outstanding curriculum, teacher freedom and near zero reliance on standardized tests in order to find ways to improve her 22 D-Level and F-Level CCPS Elementary Schools. Instead, she appears to spend more time and energy orchestrating hit pieces with the Daily News; all acted out by her puppets Roy Terry, Eric Carter, Stephanie Lucarelli and Annika Hammerschlag.