Financial shenanigans go on, unabated.
WHEATLEY ALUMS OUTRAGED BY HISD'S 2012 BOND BEHAVIOR
RECEIVING COPIES OF EMAILS AND ASKING DISTRICT PERSONNEL
TO EXPLAIN HISD'S PLANS DOES NOT QUALIFY AS ACTING IN
THE INTERESTS OF THE COMMUNITY YOU WERE ELECTED TO
HISD's least effective, most out-of-touch trustee did nothing to try to
prevent the dislocation and loss of culture for Milby High School
Rodriguez probably determined his poor, largely Latino clientele
wouldn't object to being bused to different schools during the
reconstruction of Milby High School.
houstonisdwatch has obtained all of the emails Mr. Rodriguez sent
to HISD's head of CFS, Leo Bobadilla, on the topics of Milby High
School rebuild, dislocation of students, student needs, and alternative
plans to prevent the Buffs' student body from being forced to attend
classes at rival classes by submitting a Texas Public Information Act
Conclusion? Rodriguez never asked for alternative plans, never questioned
what HISD's apparatchiks had in mind to accomplish the task of rebuilding
Milby in such a way as to create the least amount of work for them.
(editor has not corrected grammar usage and spelling in these emails):
From: Rodriguez, Manuel Jr
To: Bobadilla, Leo
Subject: RE: Bond Presentation Tonight
Date: Tuesday, October 09, 2012 10:13:58 AM
From: Bobadilla, Leo
Sent: Monday, October 08, 2012 3:13 PM To: Rodriguez, Manuel Jr
Cc: Mabasa, Veronica; Veselka, Ronnie E Subject: RE: Bond Presentation Tonight
Ronnie Veselka is working to secure a speaker for tonight and he will confirm when he
has a name. Thank you. Leo
-----Original Message----- From: Rodriguez, Manuel Jr
Sent: Monday, October 08, 2012 2:04 PM To: Bobadilla, Leo
Cc: Mabasa, Veronica
Subject: Bond Presentation Tonight Leo,
This is the follow up for tonights Pecan Park Civic Association meeting, ( which is my neigborhood
and that of Southmayd Elementary, Deady M.S. & Milby High School.
Ms. Phillips will be giving an update on the Southmayd Construction Project, but we need someone
to speak to the 2012 Bond Referendum.
Tonight - Oct. 8, 2012 at 7:00pm.
Place - Ingrando Park Community Center Address - 7302 Keller St. Hou. Tx 77012 Phone
- 713 643-4764
Thank you, Manuel
From: Bobadilla, Leo
Cc: Rodriguez, Manuel Jr
Subject: RE: Dist 3 meeting follow up
Date: Thursday, August 16, 2012 1:12:48 PM
Attachments: Bond Costs by Trustee.xls
2011-2012 Snapshot Day Membership Report by Campus.pdf
Good afternoon. I apologize for not responding earlier. Attached to this email please find a
report prepared by our Finance Department showing capital expenditures made by the District
since 1998 from the various funding sources identified in each column. Please note that District
3 has had the highest capital expenditures of any other District during this time period. In addition,
please find the 2011-12 Snapshot Report report showing enrollment by school and grade level.
Our staff has also visited DeZavala, JR Harris and Golfcrest ES and I have asked that they work with
the school to develop a plan to address needs at these schools through our facilities department.
Needs that may be more of capital project will also be identified for prioritization in district-wide
future capital requests. I also plan to visit these schools myself in the next couple of weeks to be
sure our team is remaining attentive to the needs of the schools.
As you know Milby is on the proposed bond list of projects and once the bond passes and a design
firm has been designated to this project we will ask the school to develop a Project Advisory Team
(PAT) consisting of school personnel, parents, students, community leaders, etc. to work with the
design firm in all aspects of the design for Milby including athletics and parking. I would encourage
you to be a part of that team by making the principal aware of your desire to be included. I am
certain that your input would be valuable in that process.
Finally, I have made our Academic Team aware of your concern in not having a K-8 program in
District 3 so that they can give this careful consideration when deciding on placement of future
K-8 programs in the District.
Please feel free to call me if I can help to further explain any of this information or help answer any
other questions. Thank you again for your input and commitment to our students and I look forward
to continuing to work with you. Thank you.
Chief Operating Officer
Houston Independent School District 4400 West 18th Street
Houston, TX 77092-8501
-----Original Message----- From: Lillian Villarreal [
Sent: Tuesday, August 14, 2012 9:45 PM To: Bobadilla, Leo
Cc: Manuel Rodriguez
Subject: Dist 3 meeting follow up
I am checking to see if you have any follow up on our questions from the meeting
of August 6.
Items to be checked further were:
-Milby base ball field located on school property and parking deck.
-needs for DeZavala, JRHarris, Golfcrest elementaries
-Your updates to my summary spread sheet by District-enrollment & dollars.
-AK-8 school in Dist.3 Thanks,Lillian Villarreal Sent from my iPad
From: Rodriguez, Manuel Jr
To: christina acosta
Cc: Smith, Mary F; Bobadilla, Leo; Barajas, Richard; de la Garza, Roy E;
Mabasa, Veronica; Riddick, Orlando P; Kiest, Rebecca K
Subject: RE: HISD Bond- Milby H.S.
Date: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 5:28:51 PM
I am forwarding your e-mail to the Principal, the Bond Office and to the Chief of High School Office
so that we are all on the same page.
Currently we are working on developing a timeline and schedule to have an orderly process on
when and what schools will be selected for bond work.
Once the order of schools is slected then there will be meeting set up with the different communities
to develop a design committee from each school inorder to understand the process of construction
and to get input from the community on the project. ( In our case we would be talking about Milby
If I am mistaken I am asking that the correrct information be shared to all in this e-mail.
Ms. acosta if you would like me and district personel to address a PTO meeting we would be happy to do so,
please give us some time to be able to make arrangments to do this. (perhaps after the beginning of the
Thank you, for your interest and questions. Respectfully,
Manuel Rodriguez, Jr. Board of Education HISD
Sent: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 2:07 PM To: Rodriguez, Manuel Jr
Cc: Smith, Mary F
Subject: HISD Bond- Milby H.S.
Good afternoon Mr. Rodriguez, as a parent and on behalf of the PTO here at Milby would like to
know how the approved Bond is going to work. Is there any board meetings we need to attend so
that we may get additional information. What is the time expected to see the new changes. What
exactly is going to be done at the school. In all how does all this work. Please assist and thank
you for all your assistance. Have a great day.
Uncertainty prevails over Texas school funding
Local media cover Yates band uniform protest
Click 2 Houston: band members boycott
BELLAIRE PARENTS TO VOICE OPPOSITION TO BELLAIRE HIGH
STUDENTS BEING UPROOTED DURING BHS REBUILD
"Don't to to our kids what you're doing to Milby students"
Insiders report growing opposition to bond construction in the
City of Bellaire
Milby students made to be Nomads by Grier's bond extravagance
Moldy band room and uniforms are a result of HISD's delayed maintenance
program and an out-of-touch principal
Leo Bobadilla will tell you HISD waits for plumping and A.C. systems to break
before fixing them. In fact, HISD does not budget for preventative maintenance
and the district only performs inspections as required by local, state, and
So the following pictures are not really surprising when a school principal
like Mr. Hill has not taken ownership of his own building. If Mr. Hill were doing
his job, the problems would have been reported to HISD and the problem should
have been fixed.
Grier's attitude is cavalier. Why worry when you suckered the Houston community
into voting for a mega-million dollar bond program?
mold growing on
walls and performance
Update on bus crash involving HISD middle school students
Nathan Graf's buses put another HISD student in peril
Judge again finds Texas school financing unconstitutional
Inept Houston Chronicle
The Houston Chronicle really is one of the nation's worst newspaper. The Chronicle can't
even get the date and day right for the UH home opener in its new stadium. How can we
expect them to get anything right about HISD?
Looks like there are more than
a few academic problems
at Reagan High School,
Husband of Linda Llorente, former Austin High School principal, speaks up:
My wife, Linda Llorente, retired from HISD over three years ago now. I have been
married to her for over thirty years now. I watched her grow as a dedicated teacher,
pursuing her Masters Degree while bearing one of my two children. I supported her
and encouraged her when she wanted to pursue an Assistant Principle position,
and again when she wanted to pursue the principal position at an inner city High School.
Her own Alma Mater, Austin High School.
My wife does not drink. She has never done drugs. Her two most important hobbies in her life
are dressing professionally and keeping a beautiful home for her family. In all the years I have
known her, she did nothing but focus on her job, her students, her teachers and her staff. She
was, and continues to be, one of the most dedicated workers I have never known. At the same
time she has always given everything to her family.
I watched her work tirelessly to raise the scores and quality of education at Jackson High
School, which she succeeded at. I also remember the day she began her work at Austin
High School. The kids had no books, they would have ‘protests’ so they could get books.
The Principal at the time was incompetent to lead. The staff, parents and teachers attitudes
were all in the gutter. The school was falling apart physically.
She brought some her best along with her and they worked to write grants and seek donors and
sponsors for books, technical supplies, a football team with football uniforms, a band and band
uniforms, an Agricultural program and money to repair the deteriorating building. In four years
she had completely turned the school around. The children wore uniforms, they had books and
computer equipment, science labs and higher overall scores. There was a reason she was the
highest paid high school principal in the District. She was also the hardest working. And her
staff, teachers, parents and students loved her. Most of them.
Some did not appreciate her no nonsense approach to educational administration. As a strong
minority woman in a leadership position, there were those that resented her status and success.
But I saw the writing on the wall when the superintendent position was about to change. I told her
to get out because the incoming administration had no clue about the Houston District, nor did
they care about her hard work and many years there. She already had enough credit to retire,
but she wanted to be there one more year. What a mistake.
When Grier walked in, his knee jerk reaction was to cut budgets, as is always the case with new
management that has to perform for their wage. My wife being the highest paid Principal in the
district and qualified for retirement, was an easy target. I won’t go into details about everything that
happened that year, but I will mention that many that tried to destroy her, were themselves destroyed
by their own vengeance or shortcomings. Clerical siblings, an AP that was out to get rid of her and a
couple of disgruntled low scoring teachers, did their best to make her last few months there miserable.
She spent the last few months of an impeccable career confined to an 8’ x 8’ storage closet in the
Administration building. I was heart broken. I knew that the accusations were lies fabricated to
destroy her. We spent tens of thousands of dollars on the obligatory defence lawyer, only to receive
a final report that the accusations were all baseless. Eventually she did what any strong woman does.
She picked herself up and continued her career somewhere where they really do appreciate her
hard work. Before she left Austin the testing scores were the best they had ever been at the school
and only through hard work, not deception. She left Austin High School far superior to what it had ever
been or even what most had ever dreamed of. As I understand it, the school has plunged back into
the abyss ever since.
I could go on and on about the incompetence at HISD or with Grier or in Houston. I’ve lived and
worked there all my life and I distanced myself from the ignorance and idiocy that qualifies as
management and instruction. At the time, I kept my mouth shut, although inside I was torn apart
for my wife. A few days ago I was showing her something on a search engine. I told her to enter
anything into the search field. She entered her name and your web site, houstonhisdwatch.org,
was one of the links that popped up.
That was a few days ago and I didn’t say anything. But today I went and checked for myself.
The accusations are as baseless as they were back then. Some petty comment from the
editor about her annual travel mileage report (which is required for mileage reimbursement
when using your vehicle to conduct district business). A comment about our kitchen in our home
which I paid Home Expo over ten thousand dollars to refurbish at least 12 years ago. Her picture
(unauthorised), with a headline about ‘Llorente’s ‘Reign of Terror’ at Austin High School'.
All of this needs to be removed. I commend the web site for acting as a consumer advocate for
educational accountability. But I would hope it would not be at the expense of accuracy, or the
good name of people that may be accused by others that are targeted, if for no other reason than
as a personal vendetta. It is an editors responsibility to judge accordingly. I hope you will do so.
Fernando J. Llorente
NANCY BUS SERVICE HAS NO BUSINESS CARRYING HISD STUDENTS
WHEN THE TRUSTEES WASTE MILLIONS ON ADDITIONAL ADMINISTRATORS
AND GRIER'S PET PROJECTS
DONETRUS HILL TO YATES BAND STUDENTS: WEAR THE SMELLY,
MOLDY UNIFORMS; DON'T ASK WHAT I DID WITH MONEY RAISED AT
It appears as though there are two principals of Yates High School: District IV
HISD Trustee Paula Harris who just can't stop interfering in the Yates High
School Principal selection process and the currently appointed Yates
leader Donetrus Hill. Yates band parents are furious with Mr. Hill and their
anger isn't stopping there. Ms. Harris, manipulator of Yates and charter
school advocate is feeling the heat.
We can only hope the anger at Ms. Harris takes on a life of its own. Now
is the time to begin working on throwing her out of office in the November
Keep in mind HISD has been unwilling to spend money on fine arts, a practice
exacerbated by Terry Grier who lavishes funds on administrators and creates,
with no interference from the inept HISD trustees, new positions regularly.
Yates is not the only HISD high school suffering from uniform abuse. After all,
HISD shills to the public it is saving money by reducing summer AC to mold-
producing high temperatures.
Here is what a well-placed Yates band insider has to say about Mr. Hill's
total neglect, neglect which followed promises and faux concern, about
the plight of Yates' band uniforms:
This is the scoop on the Yates Band. .Last year the band had a uniform issue. basically the
uniforms are over 8 years old. They were dirty and mildewed. This year they are molded. Hill
knew that the uniform's needed to be replaced. this was the reason for having the Block Party
Fundraiser last year. The uniforms were requested by the band director that left in July 2014. this
request was made in time for hill to place it in his budget request. during a parent meeting over
the summer the request was made again. This was mid July. Hill still didn't do anything. At this
meeting he tells the kids and parents that there is no money in the budget. for uniforms. No you
must remember that Hill and His AP Mr. Bland are old band directors. The need was there for the
uniforms to be replaced. But Hill adamant that there was no money in the budget for these children
let alone fine arts. On 8/21/2014 Parents met with Mr. Hill and his Administration. the conversation
was recorded. On this tape you will hear Hill shoot down every option for a solution to this problem.
so the kids have decided to:
1.The will not wear the school colors they will wear all black
2. They will play the national Anthem. They will refuse to play anything else.
3. The will have a full press conference with local and National Media immediately after the game.
All the kids want is new uniforms. Just like every other school in HISD. Plus their is only 22 band
More chaos at Yates High School
Marching band may refuse to perform at Yates-Wheatley football game
Nathan Graf's Transportation Department loses autistic boy on
HISD bus for hours
CHAOTIC DAYS AT YATES HIGH SCHOOL
Donetrus Hill needs to spend more time running Yates, less time
on advancing his personal interests
Does Dr. Grier believe in Principal Hill's leadership?
Day one at any school should set the tone for the rest of the school year. Instead of making
sure his building was ready to receive students, the Sunday before Yates' principal was busy
promoting his book and personal agenda on the radio. Needless to say, Yates received a
COMMUNITY GROUP QUESTIONS TERRY GRIER'S INTEGRITY;
Grier & HISD trustees are the butt of jokes in the surrounding school districtsHere is a reason why
FOREST BROOK MIDDLE SCHOOL ON LOCKDOWN
GRIER'S LEADERSHIP BREEDS INSTABILITY, STIFLES INNOVATION
Six high school leaders in five years
Opera Buffa Part One Texas school accountability is a real thing for all public schools.
But high school accountability under TEA’s STAAR Exam is far more weighty than the accountability
elementary and middle schools currently endure under the new exams. Unfortunately under the
leadership of Dr. Terry Grier, Houston ISD’s High School Office has hardly been a place that has
had a clear focus or purpose over the past five years. In five years, Houston ISD had six different
Chief High School Officers (CHSO) and two interim CHSOs. Eight different school office leaders
during an era of unprecedented change in Texas Education. This revolving door is another example
of Dr. Grier’s inability to bring stability and balance to a school office that is responsible for the
majority of TEA’s accountability. While Houston ISD’s High School Office has been spinning out of
control for the past five years, other quality superintendents in other large school school districts
around Texas have understood the importance of maintaining stability during the five year phase-in
process of TEA’s STAAR Exams. A look at Houston ISD’s High School STAAR data is beginning to
show the problems associated with the lack of longitudinal leadership and stability that other school
districts are taking advantage of. Unfortunately, the Houston ISD Board of Trustees continues to
support an imported out of state superintendent during a time when a district leader who truly
understands Texas Education and its intricacies would be most beneficial.
Chief Number One: Dr. David Simmons, came to Houston from Richardson ISD near Dallas Texas.
Grier’s first High School Chief Officer lasted only four months. The former Superintendent abruptly
resigned from RISD in August of 2009 which rubbed many people in Richardson the wrong way.
However, Simmons left RISD with a balanced budget as well as a district that was labeled TEA
Recognized. Initially Grier explained that Simmons was ill. But when Grier was questioned why
Simmon’s position was posted on Houston ISD’s HR website, Grier reluctantly released Simmon’s
resignation letter. In his resignation letter to Houston ISD, Simmon’s cited “unforeseen personal
circumstances”. Dr. Simmons resignation letter was penned in June of 2010, but his resignation
date was officially listed in late September. That lucrative detail combined with his sudden departure
had many 2nd and 3rd floor HISD employees scratching their heads. But the general consensus in
the summer of 2010 was that Dr. David Simmons had seen enough of Grier to know that HISD had
struck the proverbial iceberg and chose to be one of the first to flee the sinking ship in a partially
filled lifeboat. Attempts to find Dr. Simmons whereabouts today has proven fruitless. Regardless,
Grier’s ability to hire quality executive leadership resulted in an early and tremendous flop.
Chief Number Two: Dr. Aaron Spence, Grier’s second High School Chief came from Chesterfield
County Public Schools in Virginia. Chesterfield County Virginia looks nothing like Harris County
Texas and the size difference between the two is so massive it could be a ratio conversion problem
on the SAT exam. Unfamiliar with Texas graduation requirements, Spence would joke that he
thought Texas’ core subject “four by four” graduation requirement was some kind of off road
vehicle or pickup truck. Spence was well liked by Houston ISD high school principals and
school support officers. During his almost 18 month stay in Houston, Spence earned a
reputation as being a fighter and doing a good job of corralling the erratic behavior and tyrannical
rants of Dr. Grier. In light of the David Simmons hiccup, Spence’s quality as a leader did more
for Grier’s credibility than the myopic school superintendent could ever know. Aaron Spence
left Houston ISD to become the Superintendent of Moore County Schools in North Carolina.
He most recently has returned to Virginia as Superintendent of Virginia Beach City Public Schools.
For his ability to corral and speak out against the Superintendent when necessary, Aaron Spence
left Houston with the respect and admiration of many high school principals and school support officers.
Chief Number Three: Interim High School Chief Officer Sydney “Chip” Zullinger led the Houston ISD
High School Office after the vacancy created by the departure of Dr. Aaron Spence. While his popularity
may have been bolstered by the fact that everyone knew he was only a temporary fixture in the high school
office, Zullinger was legitimately liked by high school principals and school support officers. Frequently
calling people by abbreviations or alterations of their name, Zullinger quickly endeared himself to principals
and was found to be supportive during his short tenure. Zullinger moved to the Elementary School Office
where he quickly earned a similar reputation with elementary school principals and school support officers.
Sydney “Chip” Zullinger abruptly passed away in April of 2014 and left this earth a much loved and
respected HISD colleague and friend.
Chief Number Four: Orlando Riddick, was Grier’s next Chief High School Officer. Riddick came from
Austin ISD where he was the Director of High Schools. Riddick’s reputation with principals and school
support officers is a mixed review. It was clear to many that after the struggles Dr. Grier had with Aaron
Spence that Grier was looking for a yes man, a puppet, someone who could be controlled. Riddick was
not a fighter, but he also was not the most cooperative puppet. This resulted in Riddick being slow to
action or appear to be a seemingly reluctant leader. Eventually, Principals grew used to Riddick’s style
and the high school chief began to earn a quasi respect from high school principals and school support
officers. AND THEN in one of the most cruel acts HISD has witnessed under the thumb of Dr. Grier, who
incidentally insisted that the move was not a demotion despite the substantial cut in Riddick’s pay. Grier
demoted Orlando Riddick from the Chief High School Officer position to the Assistant Superintendent of
College and Career Readiness. The harsh cruelty of this act stems from the fact that Orlando Riddick
was the person who introduced and publicly welcomed Ms. Dana Bost to Houston ISD. Orland Riddick
had no way of knowing that the person he was introducing would be sitting in his position only weeks
later. And conversely that he would be demoted into the position she was originally hired to fill. Riddick
left Houston ISD about a year after the demotion to be the Superintendent of Cedar Hill ISD south of
Dallas. Orlando Riddick’s treatment by Grier struck a chord with everyone in an executive position at
Hattie Mae White. What resulted afterwards, was the beginning of an intra-office power struggle between
the various centers of power housed at Hattie Mae White.
The details of that power struggle and some more of the chief shuffle will appear in Part Two of this post.
written by a contributor who is an HISD insider
KTRK covers HISD's first day of school for students
(KTRK contacted houstonisdwatch to obtain phone numbers of
HISD activists who were protesting the Dodson closure. That was
back in April. Now, in August, the television station does a soft sell
ACCUSED ATHERTON TEACHERS STILL WAITING FOR HISD TO APOLOGIZE
FOR MAKING FALSE ACCUSATIONS AGAINST THEM; APPEAL TO TEA
Will TEA sanction Grier and the HISD trustees for conducting this witch-hunt?
HISD Transportation Department reports to local media on opening day
HISD insiders reported on Power-Up only science materials;
HISD science teacher confronts no materials on opening day
What do you think the district rulers are going to do when the media starts to report that the
Science textbook adoption is only available for high schools in digital format? no student
textbooks, no classroom sets of textbooks, no teacher materials.... only available on the
Power UP laptop via the internet. The teachers don't have the log-ins and have not seen
anything about the materials or the books, no information for the students for tomorrow.
Now, I completely realize that teachers can design lessons from many different sources,
but one of those sources and basis for the information normally comes from the state
adopted textbook. I also know that due to restructuring material funding the State combined
text and technology funding to give the districts greater ability to expand their technology
abilities. But can you really tell me how in the world a student that knows nothing about a
topic and has none of the buzz words or understanding of the direction of a course is
supposed to start teaching themselves from google searches? But then, what about
the student that does not have the $25 cash to pay for the computer, or the $$ for the
internet or the $$ for the electricity at home? Yes! please someone tell His Magesty that
there are paupers among his minions in the domain and forcing them to have to find yet
another "tax" to feed his future Harvard resume will not change performance rates on any
exams for the better but for the worse... you will see.. Dear King Grier! you are so out of
touch with the people you are supposed to be serving, so out of touch. But of course,
you always have been. Hopefully, the media will help you see this scheme won't work either.
HoustonChronicle.com reports on 7 things parents need to know
WITH FANFARE BUT NO DATA TO BACK UP CLAIMS, GRIER
BRAGS ABOUT HISD'S NEW INITIATIVES
According to Grier's inner circle of over-paid yes men, Apollo has
been a success to replicate, the Haberman Protocol for teacher
and principal screening works, and staff turnover just means HISD
has been successful grooming new administrators.
Of course, Apollo has been a dismal, expensive failure except in
math, where extra hours students spent being tutored would have
produced results without the gimmicks.
HISD has never researched the Haberman Protocol success and
only one HISD trustee even brought up the notion that maybe, just
maybe, HISD needed some data before spending millions on the
Principals flee the district whenever they can. Once the school
year begins, HISD's teacher vacancies will inch upward once again.
Yes, HISD is a great place to be if you think teachers and students
should be treated like lab rats.
Quick & Easy teacher certification programs flourish in Texas, donate
big money to Perry, Abbott
Judge Ellison rules against HISD
Judge in the Gil Ramirez v. Larry Marshall & HISD case refuses to
make Ramirez pay $1.5 million to HISD to recoup HISD's court coses
Despite less than enthusiastic support from the community, Grier
plodded forward with Leverage Leadership as a way to expand Apollo
on the cheap
Leverage Leadership emails reveal the heavy burden placed on LL
teachers and administrators
M3: Management Matters Most Our proposed two-year experiment seeks to test whether a focus
on management can replicate the success of the Apollo 20 experiment in low-performing schools
without a corresponding increase in per-pupil spending. The book Leverage Leadership provides
us with a valuable resource in turning this idea into an actionable plan. Written by Paul Bambrick-
Santoyo, the managing director of Uncommon Schools Newark, Leverage Leadership serves
as a blueprint for high-quality school management, detailing seven levers in core areas of
school leadership, in both instruction and school culture.
Using Leverage Leadership and the lessons learned from the Apollo 20 project, we have
designed a school management protocol to be implemented in a randomized control trial.
The protocol is organized around the seven levers: data-driven instruction, observation
and feedback, instructional planning, professional development, student culture, staff
culture, and managing school leadership teams. For each lever, the protocol consists
of both non-negotiables and a set of resources for use by principals, outlined below.
Feeling just a little too warm?
This is the latest edict from HISD Construction & Facilities Services in
an attempt to reduce costs. With 40 students in some HISD classrooms,
the afternoon sun, learning conditions will be far from optimal at 74
Another lawsuit filed against Grier, law firm conducting HISD's
alleged cheating investigation
TEACHER WHO WASN'T EVEN ON CAMPUS WAS ACCUSED TO
CHEATING AT JEFFERSON
Fox 26 report cites Grier's lies to community group about HISD's
LEVERAGE LEADERSHIP CALLS APOLLO
PROGRAM A SUCCESS...HUH?
Our proposed two-year experiment seeks to test whether
a focus on management can replicate the success of the
Apollo 20 experiment in low-performing schools without a
corresponding increase in per-pupil spending. The book Leverage
Leadership provides us with a valuable resource in turning
this idea into an actionable plan. Written by Paul Bambrick-Santoyo, the managing director
of Uncommon Schools Newark, Leverage Leadership serves as a blueprint for high-quality
school management, detailing seven levers in core areas of school leadership, in both
instruction and school culture
PARENTS OF STUDENTS AT THESE SCHOOLS BEWARE!
YOUR CHILD IS GOING TO BE TESTED TO DEATH
Alcott Bastian Brookline Bruce Cook Durkee Foerster Garcia
Cullen Grady Hartman Henry Hogg Holland Jackson Marshall
West Briar Williams
Challenge Early College
East Early College
North Houston Early College
Compliments of Harvard Ed. Labs this work to prepare for the onslaught
of testing was to have been accomplished this summer:
As part of a project being carried out in 30 district schools, the Harvard Education Innovation
Labs will be spending this summer working with a group of curriculum specialists and teachers
to create a set of rigorous interim assessments for the coming school year. Each core subject
area, in each grade, will have a set of 4 interim assessments for the year, to be taken every 6-8
weeks, which will provide valuable formative data to support data-driven instruction practices in
In order to create these assessments, we need your help to write the items that will be used in
the assessments. Curriculum specialists and managers in HISD will serve as team leads,
carefully crafting exam outlines based on both the HISD scope and sequence documents
and the Texas state standards. These outlines will spell out a vision for the exam and the
questions in it. Your job will be to execute that vision, writing the items themselves to align
with the plans designated by the team lead.
We will be doing this work during the month of June, with some work in early July, and this is a
paid opportunity. We hope that you will joi n us and your colleagues in creating a high-quality
set of assessments that teachers throughout the district can use to assess their students'
progress throughout the year.
For more information, send email here.
LEVERAGE LEADERSHIP SCHOOLS: GRIER'S BEST ATTEMPT TO TURN KIDS
OFF, CAUSE MORE PRINCIPALS AND TEACHERS TO FLEE HISD
Data-Driven Instruction Non-negotiables
HIGH LEVEL INSIDER REPORTS:
1. Rodney Watson tried to get out of HISD for two years and finally made it. He is relieved,
not just because he is a superintendent, but because he was upset by the abuse Grier inflicts
on his employees. Grier’s behavior goes against everything Rodney Watson believes in. But
he’s not the only one. The situation is that almost every high-level person working at HMW is
looking for a way out. The money isn’t enough to keep them there, contrary to what people may
think. 2. Cabinet meetings are an exercise in humiliation. Grier picks his victims but he never
focuses on Houlihan, his favorite and his godson. Houlihan is a spineless sycophant who used
his family connections (his father and Grier are best friends from NC as you know) to move rapidly
up the chain of command at HISD. From principal to SSO to Chief of Schools to Chief of HR.
Houlihan is not embarrassed by this. He thinks it’s his due. He is actually contemptuous of
other Cabinet members, but never to their faces. Behind the scenes, he fills Grier’s ears with
his opinions about how well they are doing their jobs. Houlihan spends a lot of time in Grier’s
office—and vice versa—and other Cabinet members resent it, are mad about his access, his
influence, his ass-kissing.
3. Grier is working endlessly to get Houlihan a superintendent’s job. That’s why he made him the
head of HR after only one year as School Chief. The goal is to present Houlihan as well rounded,
having done it all in HISD and therefore capable of running any school district in the country. Grier
tried to use his status (which he is convinced is enormous) to impose Houlihan on Austin ISD but
they would have no part of either one of them.
4. Lenny Schad, the technology chief, is an SOB who criticizes every other department at HMW. He has
all the answers, even though he knows absolutely nothing about running schools, coaching principals,
or improving classroom instruction. His power is immense because of Power UP----which Grier is
convinced will earn him (meaning Grier) national recognition. Grier is pushing for major publicity this
year; he wants to be known as the educational reformer who outstripped all other school superintendents
in the nation by digitalizing the curriculum and moving kids to a blended learning model. Unfortunately,
it’s all empty rhetoric because teachers have trouble with the technology, cannot always get online, and
aren’t even sure what blended learning is. Schad has been told all of this but he refuses to listen. He is
pretending, as is Grier, that we are in great shape, we are ahead of other school districts, we are
revolutionizing teaching. This is the BS they are telling the Board. NOT happening—but no one on
Grier’s Cabinet is allowed to express this opinion. To disagree with Schad and Grier on PowerUp
is the kiss of death. Why do you think the Personalized Learning Institute was cancelled? Because
Schad demanded it!
5. Shonda Huery is a fraud—an inept, uninformed egomaniac who (surprise! surprise!) is using HISD
to get a superintendent’s job. She alienated the principals when she was the HS Chief with her “All In”
nonsense and her unfocused principals’ meeting at Reliant. Now that she has replaced Houlihan,
she is pretending to know what she’s talking about. It’s not working. The principals are not fools. They
see right through her. Fact: She has not been able to answer their questions about too much of anything,
including HB5, graduation requirements, graduation rates, required endorsements, Linked Learning,
Futures Academies----I could go on. How bizarre is this? But Grier covers for her and she backstabs
anyone who dares to question her authority or judgment. The School Offices are already disgusted with
Huery. Didn’t take long, did it? Is there a reason HISD never hires from within? Is every principal in HISD
really so incompetent that he/she could not have stepped into that role?
6. Huery has hired her friend from Chicago to replace her as the Chief of HS. Really? He’s from Chicago.
He’s as clueless as she is.
7. Look into the contracts Grier is negotiating. Questionable. Very questionable!
8. Despite his spin to the contrary, Grier is upset about the just-released accountability ratings. His
tweets are a lie. Heads will roll. Get ready. This weekend, he is going school by school and making
decisions about people in leadership positions. He put them there of course, but he never sees the
correlation between his decisions and school failure.
9.. Last point---Do you think moral could get any worse? Yes, it can and it has. We are at an all-time
low in HISD. No one will rescue us. The Board continues to support Grier. We can only wait for his
contract to expire, but in the interim, we are in for a world of pain.
Why this school district is throwing its laptops away
Ericka Mellon reports on how many laptops HISD students returned
Donetrus Hill, Yates Principal, was accused of an inappropriate relationship
with two male students by an anonymous phone caller
HISD high school chief Shonda Huery Hardman removed Hill from Yates
Donetrus Hill is apparently reinstated at Yates High School
(This information was obtained through a Texas Public Information Act
request houstonisdwatch submitted to HISD)
As HISD crumbles, Trustee Eastman is busy exercising and sharing
her experiences on Twitter. Great looking pies in the headline, too
TEA acknowledges special education complaint filed by HISD parent
TRISTAR RISK MANAGEMENT REPS LEAVE HISD BOARD MEETING LAUGHING
AT THE TRUSTEES
HISD citizens sitting at the back of the meeting witness our fact-challenged trustees
award Tri Star yet another contract despite reports of legitimate workman's compensation
claims rejected by the company
Blowing the Whistle on Workman's Comp Abuse in Texas
Keep Wokrman's Comp Voluntary says Greg Abbott
Inside Texas Politics: Border, Chemical, and Workers' Comp
Hurting for Work
Board meets but Hearing of the Citizens is the only part of meeting
that deals what's really going on in HISD
Harvin Moore, Paula Harris, Manuel Rodriguez, Greg Meyers all
part of the cancer that has infected HISD; These rogue school
board members don't give a damn about kids
Mike Lunceford had a moment to shut Grier down but didn't take it
Grier has failed everywhere he's been, but Moore, Harris, Rodriguez,
and Meyers are in it for themselves
Another HISD preliminary school board meeting, another day at the circus. You can
almost smell the excrement every time these clowns meet.
Julie Stipeche and Mike Lunceford sheepishly challenge Grier on his proposal
to give another one of his buddies our tax dollars. Manuel Rodriguez, who rarely
has an original thought of his own, also questioned Grier. Rodriguez has a
tough reelection campaign coming up. He can always be depended on to
let Grier lead him around by the nose.
Anna Eastman must have been busy with her Facebook page, or maybe she
Paula Harris and Harvin Moore are in such a state of denial they simply don't
hear the criticism. These two are the most pernicious school board members
of all. They are Grier's chief enablers (of course, the quid pro quo is Moore gets
to run the Mandarin School and Paula Harris' friends get HISD contracts.)
After reading Ericka Mellon's blog, don't get your hopes up. You might be tempted
to, but, remember, Grier isn't the only cancer in HISD. It's this moronic board
that won't stop him and the few impotent trustees in opposition who won't
do what needs to be done to expose Moore, Harris, Rodriguez, and Meyers
for the academic fraud they are perpetrating on the children of Houston.
Josefa Olivares, former Dowling MS principal, is headed to Southwest Charter
Jeannie Porter, former Key principal, is going to Yes Prep.
Pearson Education resorts to hustling principals for business
Unsolicited emails sent to schools for its "Partnering with Pearson"
FORMER HISD ADMINISTRATOR BLASTS GRIER, HISD
TRUSTEES WHO CONTINUE TO ENABLE HIM
Being an educator in Texas public schools is hard enough. Being a school leader in Texas since the
rollout of STAAR has been a challenge of epic proportions. For many of the Big Seven school districts
in Texas, dealing with the myriad of changes and preparing for STAAR has been their sole focus over
the past three years. But this has not been the case in Houston ISD. And STAAR score reports are
beginning to show a more pronounced problem with Dr. Terry Grier. Houston ISD’s progress on the
state exams is beginning to falter and could soon fall behind the performance of Dallas, San Antonio,
and Austin schools. For anyone who has had the pleasure of listening to Dr. Grier talk about children
and their needs and our duty to ensure their successful futures, if you were an educator, then you were
undoubtedly swept up in the message and Dr. Grier’s words resonated in your heart. But the unfortunate
truth is not at all comforting. With the continued support of the Houston ISD Board of Trustees Dr. Grier
has reduced the needs of Houston children to the point of being a hyperbolic cliche. The Houston ISD
Board of Trustees has enabled Dr. Grier to use HISD as a vehicle for:
Houston’s Chief Educator, Dr. Grier continues to do all of these things on the backs of the same children
he says need our protection, our help and our love. But five years has revealed to us that Dr. Grier is not
about Houston or the children who live here. All of these activities have happened and continue to happen
with the continued support of the Houston ISD board of trustees.
How long will the Houston ISD Board of Education allow Dr. Grier to promote the self interest of his
friends and family over the interest of Houston children?
Yates High School Principal Donetrus Hill's SBOE certifications
Donetrus Hill majored in science and sports medicine at
Wiley College, Wiley, TX
HISD STILL NEEDS 145 TEACHERS; SCHOOL SET TO START
ON AUGUST 25
EVIDENCE EMERGES THAT RUMOR TRIGGERED COSTLY HISD
HISD "decimated" Jefferson ES according to James Fallon
Fox 26 Houston has the story
HISD TRUSTEES RETURN TO REGULAR BUSINESS THIS WEEK
After taking extended time off, HISD trustees are set to meet on
August 14, 2014, but agenda is not posted yet.
June 12, 2014 minutes from school board meeting
(Yes, serving on the HISD board is a "volunteer" job. Key word
here is job.)
Lanier, Key, Dowling principals resign
Porter Jeannine Key Middle School Principal, Middle School
Key Middle School 8/21/2008
Smith Linda Lanier Middle School Principal, Middle School
Lanier Middle School 8/26/1987
Olivares Josefa Dowling Middle School Principal, Middle School
Dowling Middle School 3/7/2001
HISD TEA report for 2012-13
Maybe more middle school principal resignations to come. Many are
tired of Michael Cardona's dictatorial leadership.
Under the failed leadership of Terry Grier and his lackey school board,
HISD had twice the number of failing schools than the Texas average
Fire Terry Grier and remove this incompetent school board
Fox 26, not the Houston Chronicle, nailed this story back in June
HISD HAD NO EVIDENCE
HISD COMPLETELY SURRENDERS
HISD FORCED TO COMPENSATE ATHERTON TEACHERS; GIVE THEM
Mark Samuel's promotion from Fondren A.P to Shadowbriar Principal
Mark Samuel has recently been named Shadowbriar principal. There have been
concerns expressed by the community that Mr. Samuel's promotion was not
warranted, he is not qualified, and he was not the first choice of the
Shawdowbriar selection committee.
*Mr. Samuel's college transcript; redact according to privacy laws, please.
*Mr. Samuel's degrees and certifications.
*Appropriate committee interview notes taken on Mr. Samuels when he was
*The minutes of the HISD board meeting when this promotion was approved,
Ericka Mellon's bar graph depicting number of teachers whose
evaluations were effected by test scores: Misleading characterization
From T. Iocca:
I was browsing the Houston Chronicle today and I decided to check out their
'Education' section. There was an article about how only a minority of HISD
teachers were subjected to HISD's value-added evaluation system. As I was
reading the article, two things struck me: one, 32.4% is a fairly significant
minority. Two, the bar graph that accompanied the article seemed 'off' to me.
If one-third of the teachers were evaluated under EVAAS, that means two-thirds
were not. The bar depicting non-evaluated teachers should be slightly more
than twice the height of the bar depicting evaluated teachers. It's not.
LOOK AT THE BAR GRAPH !
The bar representing non-evaluated teachers has been 'stretched' to exaggerate
the disparity between evaluated and non-evaluated teachers. If you look at the
labeling on the y-axis, it starts at 3000 and then is 'stretched' in increments of
1500 instead of 3000. The visual result is to suggest a huge disparity between
the two groups when in actuality, no matter how you measure it, the ratio is
almost exactly 2 to 1, and the one bar should be twice the height of the other.
Instead, the non-evaluated bar appears to be about eight times higher. The
bar graph is completely misleading.
Here's my question; was it deliberate or accidental? Did Ericka Mellon create
this bar graph or did she simply print what HISD fed her?
Grier, Feinberg engage in twitter battle
YOU'RE CLUELESS, SISTER!
Rhonda Skillern-Jones is going to '"find somebody..."
After three years on the HISD board, does District II's trustee
know the organizational structure of Terry Grier's administration?
Yes, the names and faces change all the time, but isn't Ms. Jones
supposed to reviewing Grier's recommendations before she votes
to approve them?
When confronted by a KHOU reporter after sensitive student records were
discovered strewn about long-closed JFK ES all Ms. Jones could
say was this:
"I'm going to get someone to receive the stuff and then I'm going to find
out what's going on because I am concerned," said Jones.
Gee, that makes us all feel secure. When you discover who that "someone"
is, Ms. Jones, please don't waste any time finding out what's going on.
Ms. Jones ran unopposed in 2011 and had the full backing of Parent
Visionaries. Doesn't look like PV does a good job of screening
candidates, does it?
Read KHOU report on JFK records.
HISD CITIZENS FED UP WITH GRIER & TRUSTEES CLOSING
SCHOOLS JOIN UP WITH CITIZENS IN OTHER CITIES TO
PRESSURE U.S. JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO TAKE ACTION
..."HISD joins the list of six other urban school districts – Chicago, Washington, D.C.,
Philadelphia, New York City, Detroit and Newark - who are also being investigated
by the United States Department of Education Office of Civil Rights. All of these
investigations have come as a result of community activists speaking up against
the all-too-familiar practice of closing urban schools due to alleged low-performance,
low enrollment and other miscellaneous reasons..."
Houston Forward Times has the report.
Milby students forced to move during reconstruction, waiting
assignment to Attucks MS and former Jones High School
If you are a teacher, student, or parent in the Milby community and you
do not support the relocation to Attucks and Jones for the duration of the
bond rebuild, you can blame him.
Email District III's Rodriguez and tell him what you think about his plan.
He is also responsible for creating what will probably be numerous displacements
of students during Grier's bond extravanganza. You can also email him.
Parent complaint about Trustee Manuel Rodriguez results in
HISD STILL NEEDS OVER 200 TEACHERS;
SCHOOL OPENS IN 3 WEEKS
School principals in Texas to face new grading procedure
Ericka Mellon has the report at houstonchronicle.com
THE SILENT BUNCH WITH PURSE POWER
Early in July houstonisdwatch emailed each of our nine trustees asking
for their comments on HISD's EOC STAAR results.
Mike Lunceford: responded he would have a comment when he reviewed
results. Haven't heard back.
Julie Stipeche: responded she would have a comment when she reviewed
results. Haven't heard back.
Anna Eastman: No comment
Manuel Rodriguez: No comment
Harvin Moore: No comment
Paula Harris; No comment
Greg Meyers: No comment
Wanda Adams: No comment
Rhonda Skillern-Jones No comment
Yet this uninterested or uninformed group will meet next week and vote
thousands of dollars to support whatever hairbrained idea Terry Grier
comes up with to improve the results they know nothing about. They will
approve without question personnel changes based on the results.
Parent joins lawsuit against HISD, cites violations of his child's
civil rights at Wharton ES
HISD PLANS TO SABOTAGE SCIENCE INSTRUCTION ACROSS THE DISTRICT
The new plan, which replaces last year's new plan, is to go all digital....
The next great game plan in HISD: it's learning
Who's paying to rebuild North Forest High School?
North Forest High School is not part of the
2012 bond. Texas officials are hedging on
their pledge to spend $92 million
on the project.
So how is Terry Grier going to explain this expenditure?
Bellaire community meeting on 2012 bond rescheduled for
September 4, 2014
Will HISD Trustee Mike
Lunceford be able to prevent
Bellaire students from being
spread out to four or five schools
houstonisdwatch submitted a TPIA request to determine how much
of Bellaire's bond allotment has already been spent prior to any
actual construction. HISD's bond office confirmed $250,480
has been spent on bond program management.
No substance but a nice slogan to rally teachers around
HISD's official statement on its
Remember Mittal's service contract with HISD?
Grier announces more new administrators, more out-of-state choices
HISD touts its new literacy director, Cindy Puryear
WHARTON PARENT JOINS FEDERAL LAWSUIT AGAINST HISD; CITES DISCRIMINATORY
PRACTICES AND GRADING IN WHARTON'S DUAL LANGUAGE PROGRAM
From parent email to houstonisdwatch:
I'm joining a Federal lawsuit against the Houston public school system. The United States Department
of Justice is pursuing civil rights violations against the Houston school district. The DOJ is requesting
complaints and has scheduled a formal public meeting.
Wharton Elementary is a dual language public school that my child attended. Principal Jennifer Day expelled
my 7 year old child because of their inability to educate her adequately in both English and Spanish. The
problem is Wharton's method is 80% Spanish and 20% English. I wrongly trusted that they had my child's
best interest in mind. The truth is they caused my child to allegedly fail both English and Spanish, and then
blamed her for it!!
I now believe their method of dual language education is a violation of civil rights. Their system creates an
institutional ethnic bias in favor of native Spanish speaking students. This not only damaged and violated
my child's right to be educated adequately as a native English speaking student, it also damages and
violates the rights of native Spanish speaking students by causing them to lag in English proficiency.
My child speaks English and Spanish just fine. Ruthlessly expelling her for highly questionable reasons
is wrong and I will not tolerate whatever game they are playing. There is apparently more to the story, which
likely involves ego and money based on what I know and what I have observed. The district administration
has astonishingly refused to communicate whatsoever and rather flagrantly behaves in an adversarial
manner against parents. That is corrupt in my opinion. There are other significant points concerning
violations of Federal law by Wharton about public education that I have not mentioned here.
Humorously, an assistant staff member of Wharton left me a voicemail recently about an irrelevant point,
but then did not hang up the phone correctly and accidentally recorded a rant against me announcing
her gossipy unprofessionalism to whoever was in the office. (see post below)
WHARTON STAFF MEMBER FORGETS TO HANG UP BEFORE INSULTING PARENT
IN TRAILER TO VOICE MAIL MESSAGE
ALEC has an education agenda and its not public school friendly
'The "Public Charter Schools Act" would expand on ALEC's pre-existing "Next Generation
Charter Schools Act" and enrich ALEC members like K12, Inc., the nation's largest provider
of online charter schools or cyber schools. It would allow privately-operated charter schools
to continue taking public funds, but without public accountability. The bill would give charter
schools carte blanche to operate without being "subject to the state's education statutes or
any state or local rule, regulation, policy, or procedure relating to non-charter public schools
within an applicable local school district..." -
One Republican senator stands up for U.S. workers
houstonisdwatch is criticized for including Republican and Democratic politics
in its content. Here is one Republican senator who supports hiring U.S. S.T.E.M.
graduates over foreign HB-1 visa holders.
Coldwell ES has mold
School closed but student records are not secured
KHOU.com exclusive video
HISD defends using student test scores as part of teacher evaluation
District claims only about 3000 teachers effected in 2013-14
Ericka Mellon has the report at chron.com
Dan Gohl's summer training
changes to the changes...huh?
Will this change again?
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION GIVES TEXAS AN "F" IN THE
WAY IT HANDLES SPECIAL EDUCATION
Report from Fox 26 Houston
Some community members from Yates have asked houstonisdwatch to verify
accusations made against Yates Principal Donetrus Hill that he had an inappropriate
relationship with a male basketball player.
These community members report Trustee Paula Harris interfered in the
I am making a TPIA request for relevant documents related to the accusations
Please redact any information required until federal and state privacy laws.
PAULA HARRIS: INTERFERING AT YATES HIGH SCHOOL ONCE AGAIN?
While Ms. Harris ignores her African-American constituents concerned about
HISD's ongoing closure of schools in traditionally black neighborhoods, she
did find time, it is alleged, to help her friend Donetrus Hill out of a jam.
It is alleged Mr. Hill got into some mischief with a male basketball player,
resulting in a dead-end investigation as a result of Ms. Harris' interference.
houstonisdwatch is filing a TPIA request to find out what really happened.
YATES INSIDERS DUB DONETRUS "PRINCESS"
HILL HISD'S WORST
PRINCIPAL OF THE YEAR
Who is the Worst High School Principal in HISD?
The Winner is Jack Yates’
Principal Donetrus “Princess” Hill
!!!!!Yates High School currently has more job openings
posted on the portal than any other school in HISD!!!!!
Fact: Happy Employees, don’t quit a good job!!
What are the Top 4 Reasons OVER 30 Yates Teachers
& Staff Quit after Hill’s First Year as Principal?
This includes his strongest AP’s, Attendance Clerk, Band Director and
most of the Core Teachers.
Principal Hill Doesn’t Know What He’s Doing
• Very incompetent at his job? Principal leads and manages in a way
that made employees know that he didn’t know what he was doing. First
year principals usually come with some level of management skills
right? Well, it has been clear that Hill lacks knowledge, skills, and
the ability to manage a team. This can’t be good for the Yates
community. Why bring a first year principal to a school that did not
have major problems such as morale and academic problems? The
previous principal left the school in good shape and Hill just needed
to build on it not tear it down. If you want to see incompetence at
its best just stop by 3703 Sampson Street.
Principal Hill Disrespects Most of His Employees
• Principal Hill has demonstrated a lack of respect for employees;
injuring their feelings, their self-confidence, and their self-esteem.
On a daily basis he would disrespect employees by talking over them,
belittle their ideas, ignore their input, criticize them unfairly, not
speak to them when passing in the hall, slamming doors and simply
creating an unpleasant school environment for employees. Hill gives
Real Housewives of Atlanta a run for their money. The reality show
Real Principals of HISD starring Principal Hill will be a major hit.
Principal Hill is a Bully
• Principal Hill’s bullying behavior encompasses verbal, physical and
mental abuse. Principal Hill is a bully that intimidates employees
with words; he has threatened employees with snide comments,
nice-nasty emails and direct complaints in front of others. It’s been
said that the new school year will bring about an anti-bullying
campaign led by faculty and staff without plans of retaliation against
Principal Hill Lacks the Respect of Students
• Principal Hill has been labeled bipolar/very moody by most of the
students and staff and has been given the nickname “Princess Hill”
because of his DIVA-like attitude. It’s rumored that he has a personal
relationship with Yates’ Campus Police Officer Willie A. Demby. Hill
is definitely the NeNe Leakes (RHOA) of HISD.
Will anyone from Dr. Grier’s Team start communicating with Human
Resources to stop this madness? Only Time Will Tell!!!
HISD recruiters are still working in North Carolina, tout HISD salary scale
HISD teacher vacancies: 243
DODSON CLOSURE CONTINUES TO LOOK LIKE REAL ESTATE DEAL BY GRIER, TRUSTEES
People with the Purse continue to fight Dodson's closure, citing HISD's forcing principal
to turn down new enrollees to keep enrollment low
From Fox 26 Houston
Union leader Richard C. Shaw calls on Trustee Lunceford
to protect HISD interests
Below is a story that appeared in the Houston Chronicle today. I first noticed this school
construction when I visited Jane Long Middle school a few weeks ago. Now this new KIPP
school is open for business and will eventually house what is known in educational circles
as ‘wrap around services’. Dale Davidson of the Sharpstown Civic Assoicaiton minces no words:
“Jane Long doesn’t have a chance. They’re at a place now where it is all downhill.” Meanwhile, the
Houston ISD is busy closing down schools (in neighborhoods where KIPP and YES are backfilling
them). This raises the questions. What is Mike Lunceford, District V Trustee over Jane Long, doing?
Why did he let this happen? How did this happen? Jane Long is old, small and horridly outdated.
It should have been replaced years ago. When Charter schools first opened, they filled a void and
They provided some services that regular public schools were not equipped to do. Now, they are
on their way to replacing public schools in general. They are all over HISD right now and more will
be added. This is tax payer money that is supporting these schools all without a publicly elected
school boards. This new KIPP school represents a victory for KIPP and for the lucky kids that might
be selected (and/or not kicked out) to attend. For the Houston ISD, this new school represents another
failure on HISD’s part.
The American Federation of Teachers’ Reclaiming the Promise of Public Education will not succeed
without the active help of elected public school board members. Mike Lunceford and the other HISD
Trustees need to speak directly to the parent quoted below (“She said some of her relatives attend
nearby Houston ISD schools and she didn’t consider them a viable option for her three kids.”), find
out why HISD is not a viable option and fix HISD.
Richard C. Shaw
New KIPP venture turns school into community hub
More new administrators announced by Grier
Terry Grier on the education of Houston's children: "The buck stops with me"
From African-American News
No wonder the trustees are so clueless...they depend on
Grier to do their work. Can they interpret test results?
ONE WEEK LATER, NO COMMENTS FROM ANY SCHOOL
BOARD MEMBERS ABOUT HISD'S POOR EOC RESULTS
FEDS INVESTIGATING HISD OVER
Heads up Bond 2012 Phase Two, Phase Three
and Phase Four School communities
Board Trustees and Leo Bobadilla
are coming for your Bond Dollars
The spirit of Larry Marshall is captured by Ms. Adams
HISD 2012 Bond Kick Off
Who is Bobby Tudor?
In August of 2012, Superintendent Grier, using the very same Westbury HS as a backdrop, officially kicked
So why are we hearing about these changes now? Are these changes really related to un-for-seen
Houston ISD in 2012 and was not included in the 2012 Bond. And the Texas Education Agency
So what have we learned? I see three valuable take-aways related to this story: One: Trustee
Catchings cleans out Scarborough
Stephanie Crook and Nadine Gosh, Scarborough assistant principals,
will accompany new Westbury Principal Jason Catchings to the Chimney
Rock school, leaving Scarborugh without any experienced leadership.
Board minutes from June 12, 2014 meeting
Julie Stipeche and Mike Lunceford don't go along with trustees voting
for terminations, but they don't oppose either. What does an abstention
vote really mean?
WANDA ADAMS, WE'RE WAITING TO HEAR FROM YOU
District IX Trustee Wanda Adams will gladly take your money,
but she doesn't have time to answer houstonisdwatch's request for
comments about STAAR EOC.
Is she just another Rhonda Skillern-Jones, asking over and over
for clarification then doing anything??
28 HISD Administrators missed school on May 26, 2014
Waltrip, Challenge, Wheatley principals opted out of HISD’s required Memorial Day make-up
day. 25 other HISD administrators too the day off, too.
(This information was provided to houstonisdwatch in response
to a TPIA request)
HFT MEMBER ALLEGES SHE RECEIVED NO HELP FROM UNION
WITH COMPLAINT OF REVERSE DISCRIMINATION AT EFFECTIVE
TEACHERS INSTITUTE; HER PHONE CALLS WERE NOT RETURNED
A LEADER OF THE EFFECTIVE TEACHERS INSTITUTE IS A UNION OFFICER
Reverse discrimination alleged; Union officers named
A reader of houstonisdwatch emailed this complaint to the website:
"I endured a year of "reverse discrimination" in my position at HISD, and I've been
doing a little research to see how I could have been treated so badly by HISD, the
Effective Teacher Fellowship, and the Houston Federation of Teachers. Here's
what I've found so far:
"Sybil , the Fellowship's "Behavioral Specialist" is an executive board member on the HFT,
which explains why the HFT ignored my issues and refused to return my phone calls.
"I don't know how many other board members cross over, but I think it would be hard to represent
wronged teachers while working for HISD, don't you?
"Then there's Shanna Morgan. She talks a good game. She says when asked why she wants to
work with novice teachers, "I choose to work with novice teachers because my diverse educational
background and unique learning opportunities coupled with novice teachers’ positive framing and
energy is a recipe for success."
"However, here's what The College of Biblical Studies, where her Shanna's husband works a
s the Dean of Students, has to say about civil rights:
"Apparently, homosexuals can change their stripes just as drunkards, adulterers, and thieves
can. While there is no such thing as an ex-black, there are multiple cases of ex-gays. Why? The
former is an innate and immutable characteristic while the latter is a moral or sinful lifestyle
"How is it possible to support people with a diverse background when you only believe civil rights
are for blacks and people with different sexual orientations are comparable to 'drunkards, adulterers
and thieves'?" (These allegations were reported to houstonisdwatch by Melissa Marsac. houstonisdwatch
has provided its readers her comments and analysis, not the opinion of the website editor)./
Final 2013-14 HISD enrollment numbers by campus
This information by obtained by a TPIA request filed by houstonisdwatch.
HISD'S GRIER, TRUSTEES:
Those kids couldn't have done
FOX 26 UNCOVERS HISD'S TRUMPED UP ATHERTON
After grandstanding and stalling, the HISD trustees and the Grier
administration were forced to release documents germane
to the trumped up Atherton cheating scandal which led to Grier and
a unanimous board firing three teachers.
When Greg Groogan of Fox 26 investigated and after he asked Texas
Attorney General Greg Abbott to force HISD to release documents, he
saw documents with little concrete proof of any cheating.
Bottom line: Our hack of a superintendent and his lackey trustees just
didn't believe black students could do so well on the big tough state
That's called systemic racism. The inexplicable aspect to this unethical
and illegal pursuit by Grier's team is why trustees like Mike Lunceford,
Anna Eastman, and Julie Stipeche voted to terminate the Atherton
teachers and why, when they witness injustices taking place, they don't
use the Houston media as a sounding board.
Here's Greg Groogan's report.
Update: 9 AM, July 15, 2014
Julie Stipeche responded at noon July 15, 2014
Mike Lunceford responded. Says he is studying results.
10:55 PM, July 14, 2014
houstonisdwatch with a readership of 659,661 readers send two emails to trustees
asking for comments about Grier's STAAR EOC scores, and no response.
Your tax dollars at work.
WATER WATER EVERYWHERE, BUT NOT A DROP TO DRINK
TEACHER VACANCIES SHOOT UP TO 394!
Who wants to work for an incompetent dictator?
TRUSTEES SUPPORT GRIER'S INANE
Hmmm...so the trustees allowed Grier to move Jason Catchings from
Scarborough where the test scores are in the toilet to Westbury where
Tim Wainright achieved better scores.
But Justin Fuentes, Westbury SSO, was so busy trying to save his own
job he never noticed. Surely Scarborough, a small HISD high school that
has no business remaining open, is happy to lose Catchings.
Unfortunately, Westbury gets the raw end of this deal.
Wainright opted not to kiss the asses of HISD's kleptocracy so he
chose to leave
When Mr. Funtes was busy scheming to advance his career in HISD,
he didn't do a very good job as Early College coordinator, sending back
his discipline problems to home schools.
That's Jason, for you. A me-first guy all the way.
GRIER, TRUSTEES RUN A CON JOB
ON THE PUBLIC
Anger directed at Terry Grier for his egotistical, dictatorial, and grossly
incompetent management of the nations' seventh largest school district
is abetted by an inept school board.
Members of our board were asked to respond to the district's end-of-course
STAAR performance. houstonisdwatch emailed all of them on Friday, July 11, 2014.
Spare me the comments about how it was the weekend, how busy they are doing
other things. The issue at hand is the academic performance of HISD's high school
and middle school students.
Keep in mind they haven't been asked to respond to Grier's dismail EOC
performance by any other local media organizations - at least no coverage
has been given to HISD high schools' impeding report card.i
Perhaps the Greater Houston Partnership told Trent Seibert to ignore it. Maybe
Erica Mellon is on vacation. Maybe Greg Groogan went with her.
Grier had the EOC results the last week of May. It's now the middle of July.
THERE IS NO REFORM IN HISD.
Biology did show some small improvements. English results were terrible
across the district. With too many high school chiefs to count and an atmosphere
where everyone is looking to escape, HISD is just a mess. Grier and the trustees
deserve no slack. They created the mess. Only voters can hold them responsible.
When children are being hurt by the greet, indifference, or incompetence of
the adults charged to educate them, there should be open rebellion across
But, Grier and the trustees will continue to hide, shielded by an overworked Houston
working public with too little time and money to challenge such poor leadership.
Eco disadvantaged, black students take a Grier-STAAR hit
Algebra 1: Eco disavantaged stuents drop four points from 77% passing to 73%
Algebra 1: Black students drop five points
English 1: Blacks trail whites by 34%
English 2: Blacks trail whites by 33&
Biology: Blacks trail whites by 15%
IN THE 50% PASSING
HISD RELEASED EOC STAAR RESULTS ON JULY 8, 2014
No coverage by the Houston Chronicle (no wonder their subscription sales are
in the toilet), no major news coverage from local stations...the Greater Houston
Partnership and the Grier regime, controlling the message as much as they can.
VACANCIES TRENDING UP: 369 NOW?
BLAME THE HISD TRUSTEES; THEY CONTINUE
TO SUPPORT THE GRIER TRAVESTY
Grier is welcoming yet another high
school chief to his HISD circus
Constant personnel changes, nepotism, NORTH CAROLINA, firings for
no reasons...a sleepy detached school board...it's HISD....the summer
freak show version
Fire first, question later
Since Grier arrived in August 2009 the culture in HISD has largely been the same:
Target employees for termination; pressure principals to fire teachers; mid-managers
to fire principals; intimidate and threaten top employees whose daily attendance
never matter as much as loyalty. Work three days in Houston, fly off to some
conference the district pays for. Grier was enjoying his four-day HISD work week
early on in his HISD career. He just couldn't make himself disappear when seen
by HISD citizens at IAH and Hobby on Fridays. Tsk, tsk.
HFT was aware of Grier's flaws when he was hired. Unlike the California teachers
union which actively opposed Grier and helped facilitate his leaving San Diego United
School District, the union surmised Grier was better than Michelle Rhee.
When mid-level managers at 4400 W. 18th St. are terminated on trump charges, like
the Medicaid officials who recently sent materials to this site, and refuse to see
Grier's role in their terminations, it speaks volumes about how TEAM Grier operates.
Incite fear and paranoia in district employees and force your workers to protect themselves
in protective bubbles, unaware of the mayhem going on around them.
In HISD, Grier gives the order SSOs have got to go. The SSOs then scamper to fire some
more principals in the hopes of saving their jobs. Even high profile SSOs like Justin
Fuentes fall into the Grier trap. Grier populates his district with spineless sell-outs.
(More to come on Fuente's one foot in, one foot out involvement in helping Westbury
where he was SSO.)
Four members of the board are supposed to be the opposition. HFT supports Julie
Stipeche who bartered her way to the board presidency. But Stipeche, along with
Mike Lunceford, and Anna Eastman, sit quietly, occasionally voting to disagree with
the five members who have quid pro quo relationships with Grier. But Stipeche,
Lunceford, and Eastman don't go to the papers, don't give speeches, don't
oppose Grier's agenda in any public way other than a vote or two.
Rhonda Skillern-Jones talks a good game, but does nothing.
I'm sure I'll hear how houstonisdwatch just makes this stuff up. I'm inclined to
tell those who hurl such nonsense to give it up. I've been around HISD for 37
years, have contacts with numerous district administrators, and receive tips and
emails on miscreant behavior in the Grier administration regularly. Furthermore,
this website is a public service, it requires no financial investment by anyone but
me, and the naysayers are free to go some where else.
HFT nor the Grier administration has say-so over what gets put on this site.
So ask yourself: Could my job be in jeopardy? If you work for HISD, the answer
is quite clear.
The number of teacher vacancies along with "other certified instructional staff as of