Monday, August 30, 2010

BISD ELECTION AND RENDON LAWSUIT

BUT FIRST - WEEKEND POST - HURRICANES: 110 years ago Iceland and Galveston got hit with major hurricanes. I just found this interesting with Danielle approaching Greenland or Iceland. We do know Danielle will dissipate into a tropical wave by the time it approaches Greenland or Iceland, but still for a tropical wave to make it to such cold waters is unusual.

The true news in the BISD elecion is the battle which will occur between Cortez and Escobedo. I predict Cortez will win in a landslide and here is why. Escobedo either lacks even the semblance of integrity or he’s delusional. This reality will not play well with the voters.

“Escobedo said some members of the Brownsville Independent School District board had "allowed special interest and politics to become part of our meetings and our decision making. “ This is according to the Herald. There is something profoundly wrong with this man when it comes to good judgment. Kathleen Jimenez is the wife of his business partner. Springston supported her placement as director over special needs children in exchange for Escobedo’s support for his hiring as the superintendent. This is the perception in the community and the facts tend to support this perception. It is not that Cortez is not guilty of the same conduct - it is Escobedo pretending he has clean hands in the matter.

Escobedo will also have to face the charges related to his ethics violations. These were not simple violations - they related to lying about campaign money and misappropriation of BISD campaign money for the county commissioner race. This is the type conduct which the people of Brownsville find to be a game ender.

Then there is the issue of ‘doctor.” Whether he mislead the people on the issue is a matter for the people. This is something which he will deny, and many people will claim as real. In politics, it is the type issue you never overcome.

The real question is, why did he run from Otis Powers? What does Otis know? This switch makes no sense. Otis got defeated by a new comer, although it was sort of a close race. Why would a sitting board member run from a former board member who was defeated in the last election? Here is the real story which needs further investigation.

Otis is not without his own problems. There is the issue of the Antonio Juarez tapes and claims he tried to manipulate the process related to Hector Gonzales. I cannot wait to see how this election plays out.

GETTING TO THE MEAT OF THE RENDON LAWSUIT

Rendon will loose on appeal. I am 100% certain that Antonio Juarez’s case will also be thrown out on appeal. The appellate courts are not going to accept that you have a Free Speech claim just because you run and file a complaint somewhere when you know you are about to be fired. This would make it impossible to fire any public employee.

Further, the true complaint in both the Rendon and Juarez cases is about policy differences. No appellate court is going to allow for a claim of Free Speech claim over policy disputes. The thing both cases have in common is, they claimed illegal conduct, but yet there is no evidence any illegal conduct occurred. No law enforcement agency has opened an investigation into any of the claims made by Rendon or Juarez.

Rendon’s lawsuit reads as something written by an idiot or someone hoping for a corrupt federal judge to issue a ruling in Rendon’s favor. Federal judges have no business micro-managing public entities because he/she might find the policy decisions of those entities to be questionable.

A big issue for Rendon is the so called medicaid fraud. If we remember the great Carlos Quintanilla had a Dallas law firm ready to file a class action lawsuit. That died on the vine because there was never anything there. Let’s pretend commonsense is actually a variable is how people analyze the question.

In the case of Tara Rios, we know that if there is medicaid fraud the government will prosecute. When I raised the issue of dentists putting braces on children who did not need them as part of the medicaid fraud in the LRGV, I was attacked by a reader - probably a dentist.

Rendon and his lawyer friend would have us believe that the government is in a conspiracy with BISD to coverup medicaid fraud by BISD. Delusional is the word which comes to mind.

The entire backdrop to the medicaid fraud deals with special services and somehow ties into the Walsh law firm and plaintiff’s lawyer Jonas. This entire claim is so bizarre it bothers me that it was actually made.

Rendon has zero qualifications when it comes to psychiatry, but yet he is an expert on the needs of these children. A family of 4 which earns about $3,600.00 a month qualifies for CHIP medicaid. This is how easy it is to get your children on medicaid. BISD has nothing to do with this.

http://www.chipmedicaid.org/english/qualify.asp

Mental health in many ways is junk science - several months ago I demonstrated how the psychiatry profession is changing how it diagnoses various mental health problems. This is done through the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-IV. In the field of schizophrenia these professional cannot even agree how to diagnose the disease or when you label a person with schizophrenia. They cannot agree whether or not the medicine which suppresses the voices actually works. There is a growing body of anecdotal evidence that while the medicine may suppress the voices in a way which the patient is aware of the voices, but does not suppress the voices in a more subliminal way. But yet Rendon is an expert as to whether or not these children needed treatment. Medicaid investigators ignored the complaint by Rendon because they are not going to get into second guessing professionals when it comes to mental health questions because an administrator at BISD has a score to settle.

The Walsh/Jonas claims are truly bizarre. When a parent files for a Due Process hearing BISD, contrary to the implied argument of Rendon, must defend, Well actually they can just concede the argument, but that is not how public entities work. All public entities defend against allegations of wrongdoing. Walsh had nothing to do with the Due Process claims. The Due Process claims came as a result of the mismanagement of special services and by other processionals outside of special services. Most of these claims, and the attorneys fees spent on defending the Due Process claims came as a result of mismanagement by BISD employees, with special services being the number one culprit.

Had special services not been mismanaged, the Due Process claims never would have been filed. The blame goes to the mismanagement of special services, and in many cases principals and vice-principals not properly handling the concerns of parents. BISD has a major problem with follow-up. This is the Achilles heal of BISD and there is no desire to fix the problem.

In the end Walsh had nothing to do with whether or not parents filed for Due Process hearings. Walsh had the job to defend the claims. There would be no claims if special services and the principals were doing their job. To be fair Rendon inherited a mess. Special services will always be a mess until the board commits to the hiring of a highly qualified person to run special services.

As to the plaintiff’s lawyer Jonas, BISD had no control over this lawyer save not violating the due process rights of the children. For the record, Rendon concedes BISD was violating the due process rights of the children and then complains Jonas filed for due process hearings and Walsh's defense of the claims. BISD’s conduct is the only reason Jonas was able to come to Brownsville and make a buck on our children. What is so bizarre is Rendon stipulates in his lawsuit the due process rights of the children were being violated by BISD.

Another bizarre complaint is the claim the Due Process hearings went away after Rendon filed his complaints. According to Rendon, Jonas was incapacitated from an accident. Maybe just maybe the fact Jonas was incapacitated had an impact on his ability to file for Due Process hearings - but this is just me. Now there might be something about SaldaƱa ignoring possible fraudulent billing from Jonas’ office. The problem is, I have not seen the bill. Is the bill from Jonas’ office, meaning an associate did the work, or from Jonas himself?

Finally, Rendon claims Kathleen Jimenez was hired although she was not qualified. This is an amazing accusation. “¶ 73. In order for Gonzales to hire Art Rendon to oversee Special Services, he ordered that the requirement the Administrator be certified in special education be removed from the job description.” This was a finding by the TEA hearing officer who heard Gonzales’ case. Is Rendon just stupid? - did his lawyer even look to the facts or is his lawyer hoping for a judicial activist judge to ignore reality?

Another key finding on Rendon “¶ 20. Gonzales conducted a survey of 48 BISD principals. Gonzales’ survey showed 44 of the 48 had no confidence in Special Services.”

A second finally, the “Overton Report.” This was a junk report. The authors were sanctioned by the State of Texas. The person they accused of wrongdoing was cleared. Rendon and his lawyer seem to believe facts are irrelevant. I can tell you Rendon is performing his duties over at public housing with the same disregard for facts or any semblance of reality.

The following is from a January 2009, BV post. The facts as to de Alba’s qualifications are accurate as of that date. I say this because the status of his qualifications could have changed in the last 19 months.

BISD paid for a cut and paste report by "Special Workshops and Consulting, L.L.C. , Dr. Cheryl Fielding and Terry Overton. I do not know for sure who else worked on this report which is in many ways a cut and paste report. Parts of the report include incomplete sentences where findings were left out. What I do know for sure is, Dr. Fielding has worked with Lead BISD LSSP Roman Garcia de Alba. I also know for sure she has worked with Terry Overton Differential Diagnosis of Hispanic Bilingual Children Referred for Autism Spectrum Disorders Queen Anne Parlor Cheryl Fielding, Terry Overton, and Roman Garcia de Alba

http://www.unr.edu/educ/ceds/conf_agenda_2007.pdf

Who are Terry Overton and Roman Garcia de Alba? They are the two who were sanctioned in October by a Texas State Board.

In October 2008, Dr. Roman Garcia de Alba. Lead Licensed Special in School Psychology under Art Rendon, BISD, received the following sanctions from the Texas State Board of Examiners.

Complaint: Respondent failed to properly identify himself as a supervisee andfailed to identify his supervisor in public statements.Sanction: Respondent was assessed an administrative penalty of $1,500.00 andmust obtain six (6) hours of continuing education in ethics.http://www.tsbep.state.tx.us/documents/NL-Winter2009.pdf

Another sanction from October 2008 is tied to Terry P. Overton, Ed.D., Licensed Specialist in School Psychology (McAllen) (He teaches ethics at UTPA’S College of Education)Complaint: Respondent provided supervision to a person without adequatedocumentation, and did not ensure that the supervisee identified himself as such.Sanction: Respondent was assessed an administrative penalty of $1,500.00 andmust obtain six (6) hours of continuing education in ethics.

http://www.tsbep.state.tx.us/documents/NL-Winter2009.pdf

http://brownsvillevoice.blogspot.com/2009/01/bisd-hector-gonzales-and-art-rendon.html

The company which generated this report was formed in January 2007. They were then hired to generate the report. Roman Garcia de Alba was then hired to be the Lead LSSP at BISD, although he was not legally then, nor now, qualified to supervise other new LSSP’s.

The report was then used as part of a complaint against another LSSP moved around by Art Rendon. That LSSP was cleared of wrongdoing by the same Board which sanctioned Art Rendon’s boy-toy, Roman Garcia de Alba and Overton.

Of note, in the report used against a BISD LSSP, Fielding and Overton used standards from the National Association of School Psychologists. Only one problem, these standards are not used in Texas. Psychologists’ Licencing Act and Rules and Regulations of the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists expressly provides the NASP rules are not used by Texas psychologists.

It is time to investigate the influence peddling which got this report generated.

Will anyone enter stage left to protect the taxpayers? No, there are just too many attorneys waiting for the handouts being offered by Saldana.

We need to find out how much has been paid to Cheryl Fielding and Terry Overton by BISD, since their report helped Roman Garcia de Alba secure his job as Lead LSSP. My limited information to date shows it at over $29,525.00

Ms. Fielding’s professional resume shows a long history of collaboration with Roman Garcia de Alba, and Terry Overton

http://www.utpa.edu/dept/educpsych/fielding.pdf

 “ End post from previous BV post.

In the interest of full disclosure, here is the Overton report. Read it and tell me it is not a cut and paste job- why did we pay for this?

http://www.docstoc.com/docs/11637733/OvertonReport

Look, I have never denied Rendon was fired for political reasons. But here is the problem with BISD - they keep unqualified people around and in fact hire unqualified people so that they can control them. When they refuse to do the political work they get fired. To rehire them because the reason behind their discharge was political is insanity. You do not rehire people who were not qualified in the first instance just because they were fired for political reasons.

You see, the ability to give good foot rubs is more important to BISD that the candidate's resume.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I lost you after the 1st paragraph, but why don't you apply to take over Mike Saldana's place? BISD would not be in the cess pool it find itself in.

BobbyWC said...

It is not complex - but long - I am all too aware that long means I will lose about half my readers -

these type posts are hard for a lot of people - the focus is just not there

Anonymous said...

It was not the length or the content of the article, Bobby. It is that most of us are not lawyers and we turn off when we do not understand. It is just because it is so much crap that our elected officials are involved in that it angers us enough to not want to hear anymore about it. None of us seem to be strong enough to do anything about all this corruption that is going on in this city and that is why it is being done. Your blogs are what keep us up to date with all the shenenigans and we thank you!

Anonymous said...

It was not the length or the content of the article, Bobby. It is that most of us are not lawyers and we turn off when we do not understand. It is just because it is so much crap that our elected officials are involved in that it angers us enough to not want to hear anymore about it. None of us seem to be strong enough to do anything about all this corruption that is going on in this city and that is why it is being done. Your blogs are what keep us up to date with all the shenenigans and we thank you!

Anonymous said...

RULES FOR VOTING IN BROWNSVILLE

1. Do not vote for dethroned/disreputable candidates.
2. Do not vote for recycled candidates.
3. Do not vote for a candidates being funded by special interest groups (law firms, industry, developers, etc.).
4. Do not vote for a candidates not being supported by the "people", but by political cronies.
5. Do not vote for candidates whose political platform is composed of meaningless political platitudes.
6. Do not vote for candidates whose only qualifications are overflowing election coffers.
7. Do not vote for a candidate who only brings to the table the goodwill the public has for his family’s last name.
8. Do not vote for a candidate that claims to be the lesser of two evils.
9. Do not vote for candidates just because he had the best pachanga with free beer.
10. Do not vote for a candidate just because he claims he will "now" work full time, and will "now" foster communication and will "now" work to attract high wage jobs. What was he doing before?
11. Do not vote for a for candidates ....(insert your own)
Of course, that's just me, I encourage you to contribute to the list.

Christian