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houstonisdwatch wants to hear from you  especially from HISD insiders.

Farinas uses teacher assignment change as a means to non-renew her
Farinas: HFT helps teacher appeal termination decision
Teacher challenges her decision. With HFT representation, asks for certified
hearing examiner from T.E.A.

Farinas: Conference for Record summary; teacher not present, represented by HFT

Allegations of Discrimination
made by Brenda Limbrick-Sanders against Pam Farinas
handled by HISD's E.E.O. office

AP Test results: A good deal for the HISD taxpayer?

With issues like the bond election ahead, it's necessary to review how the trustees and Grier
spend our money.  Grier has mandated for Advanced Placement courses in high schools, and
he has mandated that every student enrolled in the A.P. class sit for the A.P. exam.

In addition to the waste of examinee no-shows, look at the number of exams taken that did not
achieve a score of "3" or better, the minimum standard for the award of college credit.

2012 A.P. test results

Theft at Gregory-Lincoln HPD Report
          Criminal mischief at Gregory-Lincoln HPD Report
         Terroristic threat at Gregory-Lincoln HPD Report

Update from houstonisdwatch member NAST-T:  Fryer's back in town

Aug 23, 2012 @ 9:06 AM delete

It was bad enough that Grier talked condescendingly to the teachers present at this "celebration" by
telling them what he expects when he walks down the halls of the schools, but more nauseating than
this, his Messiah, Dr. Roland Fryer, who was the keynote speaker at this "celebration," completely
disrespected the crowd of approximately 700 Professionals and about 75 school aged children.
While talking about his seemingly rough childhood, he saw freely to drop three S-Bombs, one D-Bomb,
and yes, one powerful F-BOMB in the presence of adults and children. Does this mean I can do this in
my class?

Allow me to drop one of my own real quick...


How do you like those apples...
by NAST-T (Aug 23, 2012)

Pam Farnias calls HPD: Fighting in public, disrupting school
Pam Farinas' reimbursements
Pam Farinas' step increase
Pam Farinas
 transfered from Foerster Elementary to
Gregory-Lincoln Middle School, garnering a $2000 raise in the process
She earned $84,000 at Foerster; $86,000 at Gregory-Lincoln  

Mary Cisneros at Golfcrest:: Police report
Burglary of school 
          Child abandonment/endangerment 
           Narcotics investigation
Pam Farinas at Gregory-Lincoln : Terroristic threat at Gregory-Lincoln
           Assault (Bodily Injury) 

Reactions to McDonough's Bellaire Principalship
from Time to tell the truth:
Westside will not even miss McDonough since he did nothing while at WestsideHS. You said it best when
you called him Mr. McDoNothing. Hey Bellaire, you should have done your homework and checked him out.
You would not have been impressed. He can't make a decision! Wimp! He is no Tim Salem and never will be.
Very few people wanted McDonough at Bellaire but HISD played their games and gave the committee no
options. The committee picked the AP from Bellaire but Grier had selected Mr.DoNothing administrator
before the interviews started. The secret is out, McDonough stinks it up everywhere he goes. Hang on
Bellaire! You'll be begging for Salem to come back!
by Time to tell the truth (Aug 21, 2012)

From I agree:
@ Time to tell the truth!
You've called it. It was an inside job from the start. They just held the community meeting to give some
gloss to a done deal. We're just wondering if part of McDonough's deal is that he tries to persuade the
important and skeptical Bellaire community to support the bond.

Everything's about the bond right now.
by I agree (Aug 21, 2012)

From cynical Houston:

You nailed McDonough's double speak really well. He says what people want to hear; then he does what he
wants and relies on his favorite son status to not get caught up in the fall-out. He's Teflon Mike -- nothing sticks
to him.

All in all though, Bellaire got what it needed -- an experienced principal ready to step in on day one. Westside got
shafted, but hopefully they'll find someone who actually cares about that community.

On the other end of the stick, we have the Apollo schools that are just a revolving door. Someone might be good,
but there's no time to find out. Scores aren't where they want, they're gone, even if things are beginning to turn
around. Or they're smart and jump off the merry-go-round because the pressure and headaches aren't worth it.

HISD's biggest problem right now is it's lack of effective campus leadership. Why is that you ask? I think that's
what the board and HISD should be asking.
by cynical houston (Aug 21, 2012)

From What Did You Expect:
Of course Mike McDonough was going to get the Bellaire job. Grier wasn't going to risk pissing off the Bellaire
parents. They have the influence and the money to ring his clock. Grier will just stay to pissing off the Elrod,
Kashmere, and the likes. His sorry ass doesn't have enough balls to go against Bellaire's kind. As far as
McDonough goes, he is the ultimate in putting up the necessary fronts but all along does what he wants
and is a master at making you think that it is what you really wanted to. He will do what he has to to get along,
and pick his battles very carefully. He does care about children and tries to make their stop at his school the
best it can be. I'll give him that much. But he lacks discipline with both students and staff. He is more soft on
the serious issues, and kind of flip if you point things out to him. Once his mind is made up about something
you can forget it. He will not break once he makes a decision whether its good or bad or right or wrong. But
he certainly will make a good fit. The Bellaire community puts him right back in his favorite element. He
always wanted to be principal of that campus.
by What Did You Expect? (Aug 21, 2012)

lrod still looking for three teachers; overall 219 teacher vacancies
Apollo schools Jones, Kashmere, Lee, Sharpstown, Key, Ryan, Dowling all
have vacancies

Correction suggested on number of teacher vacancies:
Also, the number of teacher vacancies is way off . More like 30-40. High number showing is a result of
paperwork lag in HR. Who will step up and take the lead to make this an effective department!
by Insider (Aug 21, 2012)

2012-13 HISD Slogan? How about a thought caption of Grier's: "Pass the bond,
I won't be here anyway by the time the work begins"

What is the slogan for HISD this year? Please don't make it college bound again. Maybe it could
be "Keep our teachers happy."
by Milbified (Aug 16, 2012)

Teachers' slogan: "Just Say "NO!" to administrative bullying"
A new year begins and we should join together so that we will not be intimidated and bullied by TEAM HISD.
We should also realize that we need to speak for ourselves and not allow unions (HFT) to speak for us. Where
were the unions when we needed them. We, the veteran teachers of HISD are professionals and should
demand to be treated that way. BE BLESSED!

Grier avoids tangling with Bellaire parents, appoints safe choice Michael
McDonough to succeed well-liked Tim Salem

Bellaire High School parents, students, and staff should count their blessings
this morning. They wanted an individual familiar with Bellaire's culture,
someone they know and trust, a practical applications guy rather than an
ideologue. Michael McDonough, a seasoned HISD principal with stints at
Pin Oak and Westside, satisfies those requests.

With political skills which, at times, rival Mitt Romney's doublespeak, McDonough
will have difficult challenges when the zealotry of the Grier administration 
pushes him to buck influential parents and citizens of Bellaire. Middle
school is not high school nor is Bellaire Westside.

Mr. McDonough returns to Bellaire after serving as former Principal Bill Lawson's
intern and as an assistant principal.  Bellaire staff is hoping the legacy of
his A.P. stint, when students dubbed him "Mr. McDoNothing," is buried
deep in the past.

There is no doubt he has had some excellent mentors, and he returns
to Bellaire replete with trust and high expecations. He has always
wanted to be principal of Bellaire. He possesses the smarts and
skill to make his return to Bellaire a success.

Grier attempts to appease Bellaire parents but ignores Kashmere, and Elrod
parent groups

It's politically incorrect to call Grier's actions race-based, but what are they?
Kashmere parents spoke to the board, Sheila Jackson-Lee spoke to the board,
telling them they do not want Amber Wilson as their principal. Grier does
not budge. Bellaire's parents are predominately white. Kashmere's are
black. Elrod has many active Hispanic parents. So what gives?

Kashmere parents made it clear they have nothing against new principal
Amber Wilson. They did, however, want to be consulted in the principal
selection process.  Consequently, Ms. Wilson is not an acceptable

…..and the Ineffective Leadership Gold Medal goes to.....Linda Bellard. Here is the score breakdown:
Lack of Data Knowledge 10 (Could not explain actual data when teachers with statistics knowledge
asked her what the breakdown was according to individual teachers. Her math coach was trying to
cover for her by comparing apples to carrots. Teacher who asked question was appalled to hear math
coach’s response.) Not Prepared for Teacher’s First Day 10 (Constantly flipping through pages looking
for things and forgetting where she had placed information and making excuses for not finding what
she was looking for.) Grammatical Error and Typos 15 (Power Point presentation contained a lot of typo
errors and handbook is, again, full of grammatical errors and conflicting information. Most of the suppose
Board Policy is made up by her.) Unity Theme 10 (Grade levels are comparably close to each other to work
as teams. She has dispersed them throughout the building. She did not put any thought of where she was
placing the many NEW teachers and teachers that were moved to different grade levels. All decisions are
made by HER. Suggestions were not taken into consideration.) Full of Excuses 20 (She constantly was
making excuses as to why she did not have correct data, why she was not prepared, why there were so
many grammatical errors and typos, and the reason she did not have time to think about where teachers
should be because she was preparing for the first day to welcome teachers.) We’ve never had scores over
10 in the history of the Olympics but the Committee has decided to make an exception due to the circumstances
of the merit being awarded.
by In Spirit of the Olympics (Aug 21, 2012)

More teachers views of HFT
The problem with hft is they are pretty limited in what they can do being as Texas is basically a non union
state for teachers. But I must say in my dealings with them it depends on the union rep you get. Some are
really good and some suck big time and need to retire asap.
by uniontx (Jul 16, 2012)

Yes the unions and HFT are limited to what they can do. BUT with what HISD is currently doing to teachers
and their many of THEIR members, with these F'ed up principals, they need to STOP playing with HISD and
start bringing lawsuits on behalf of their members and others! With all the discrimnation, harassment,
bullying, and downright lying taking place in HISD the past few years there IS a class action lawsuit in
there somewhere or are they just letting HISD do as they please as they sit by watching their membership
roles dwindling? Bring in the "big" guns and guys from the federal offices and since Grier and his minions
like to play games...let the real game s and investigations begin! Again where are the unions???? Hello?
Hello? "chirp" chirp" Hellllllloooooooo......
by Stop playing Unions (Jul 16, 2012)

Union supports you when you need help the most
Not Joining the Union As a nonmember the union can not assist you. Why should teachers join a union? •
To have someone to turn to when you have been treated unjustly • For backing and legal assistance •
Because unions advocate improving our standard of living • Unions fight for public education, smaller
class sizes, and fair compensation for us. Who will come to your aide if you do not belong to a union? N
o one! Rest assured your principal will not confront you one to one he/she will have several people with
them when they call you to the office. I stand with my fellow teachers and ask you to do the same, unite
with a union. You, should join the American Federation of Teachers before the beginning of this school year.
by Dude (Jul 16, 2012)

From Not Joining the Union:

I have decided that the union is a waste of money. Teachers have been fired without due process and they sit
around and do nothing. Complaints have been filed to numerous individuals about the crap that is going on at
Elrod and nothing is being done. The union is as helpless and anyone. They sent that survey out only to get
teachers in trouble-like what happened at Elrod when teachers did speak up. THE UNION IS A WASTE. They were s
o busy going after bull crap claims when we need them they really do not know what to do for real situations. Stop
giving your money to the union.
by Not Joining The Union (Jul 16, 2012)

Counter attack HISD?
Until the so-called unions announce how they intend to counter attack HISDuh and this evil regime, I would
not waste my money either! Might as well save it for when you resign instead of being terminated because that's
what the union lawyers will do for you for the dues you've paid!?!?
by ABSOLUTELY!!!! (Aug 20, 2012)

Union leaders: Where are you?
One question....where in the heck are these so-called union leaders when all this mess is going on within the
walls of HISD? Why hasn't there been a class action lawsuit filed with the state and federal DOJ's and EEOC's
for the continual discrimination and forced retirement, resignation or in the end termination against mostly veteran
teachers as well as others , harassment of teachers, bullying of teachers, and the list could go on and on??? This
has ben occuring since Grier wss hired and every year it has gotten worse! As stated before, these leaders are
making up crap and downright lying on state documents/evaluations and getting away with it by this administration!
Someone needs to file a lawsuit and get the state and feds investigating just what the heck in being allowed to go on
in this district! SO hello Unions???? Get the ball rolling here before your the next ones on the unemployment line
because there won't be any teachers left to join your organizations! And you wouldn't have to look to far for complaintants
to sign on to your lawsuit because everyone that haas been wronged by this administration in one way or another
will come out of the woodwork!!! Again, union leaders.....where are you!?!?!?!
by Lawsuit (Jul 16, 2012)

Should you join the union this year?

A new year begins and we should join together so that we will not be intimidated and bullied by TEAM
HISD. We should also realize that we need to speak for ourselves and not allow unions (HFT) to speak
for us. Where were the unions when we needed them. We, the veteran teachers of HISD are professionals
and should demand to be treated that way. BE BLESSED!

Apollo after two years not a source of good P.R. for HISD
Apollo Program & Dr. Fryer:
No comments on Dr. Fryer this summer?
by TIRED?????? (Aug 13, 2012)
Editor: Let me ask you a question: When have you heard the word "Apollo" uttered by
any board members at meetings held in 2012? It's the elephant in the room for some
obvious reasons:
1) Inability to maintain strong leadership
2) Lack of enthusiasm among parents resulting in declining populations (Ryan, for example?)
3) Failure to produce the kind of test results to validate the program's success
4) The end of Title 1 funds earmarked for Apollo tutoring, meaning the program will become
     an even greater drain on district resources
5) Roland Fryer's assessment last year that Apollo students would not see meaningful gains
    in reading achievement levels for at least four years. (This report comes from the
    Huffington Post.
6) Funding raising goals that now seem far out of reach.

These reasons may explain why Roland Fryer is absent from the Houston scene, why Grier and
Paula Harris refer to Apollo as "that program", and most assuredly why the words bond and
Apollo will never uttered in the same context by HISD officials.

From Questions:
If the Apollo program is a 3 year trial "test" to create successful inner-city schools, why on earth would
Grier remove the "leaders" after 2 years and place new one into that school. Does this make sense?
by Question (Aug 19, 2012)

Defending Mary Cisneros' leadership at Golfcrest
Proud Golfcrest Teacher:
I am excited to be returning to work this year. I have met with some teachers over the summer and we
energetic and ready to work with our students who are arriving next week. Hopefully those employees
who were unhappy have found the opportunity to move on. There are many on our campus who like the
direction that we continue to move on with our students and as members of the Golfcrest staff under the
leadership of Mary Cisneros. I believe that Mary Cisneros is a strong leader and many positive changes
have taken place the past two years under her leadership.
by Proud Goldcrest Teacher (Aug 19, 2012)

Mary Cisneros subscribes to the Rodriguez-Davila methods of
school management say her critics

Traveling Houston's highways and byways at HISD taxpayers' expense
always on school "business"
$120.42 requested on April 6, 2011
$97.92 requested on June 27, 2011
$267.00 requested on Dec. 7, 2011

As an assistant principal at Davila ES, Cisneros made $64,296.50.
Replacing Freddy Delgado at Golfcrest, she would earn a base salary of $60,500
with a performance award of $7500, a total of $81,000 annually.

On June 24, 2010, Sam Sarabia, HISD Elementary Schools Officer, recommended
Mary Cisneros, who had been serving as an A.P. at Davila Elementary School,
be given the
principal's position at Golfcrest.

HISD's P.R. about back to school activities; Apollo schools begin on August 20

Bellard: STAAR Worskshop in Beaumont documentation/reimbursement

Bellard reports: Terroristic threat by cutting made against student at Blackshear

In 2011 52-year-old Linda Bellard received a base salary of $62,500 to transfer to
Blackshear and a $7500 performance bonus, uping her salary to $76,000

Westside's Michael McDonough Bellaire's
Andrew Monzon are the two HISD candidates remaining in the search
Duran, an educational consultant from San Diego; Mike McDonough, current
Westside High School principal; Andrew Monzon, current Bellaire administrator;
and a woman from Galena Park ISD.  Three of the four finalists are Hispanic.
Bellaire's last female principal preceded Bill Lawson. After several disagree-
ments with the faculty, she resigned and moved to Alaska. A principal is
to be named on Monday, August 20.

Teacher reviews
of Terry Grier: High pressure leadership, hired as a hatchet man
HISD "deals with" STAAR results from the Houston Press

Get ready: The TFAers are coming!
With 221 vacancies, HISD is looking for a
quick solution to its H.R. problems

Read Teach for America's puff piece on Rodriguez-Davila
HISD's TFA report 2009-2011
*HISD's interview questions courtesy of Glass Door
From Milbified:
Can someone explain just what a TFA teacher is? And does anyone know where we can find our AYP
results are? I heard that thousands of letters went out telling students that they can transfer from a lower
performing school to a higher performing school. Just wondering if we will be losing or gaining students.
by Milbified (Aug 15, 2012

Veteran responds:
To Milbified A TFAer is a person who went to college and majored in something other than education. Upon
graduating they decided that evidently they wasted their time with the other degree because they can't find a
job sooooooooo hey I think I can teach! And so they apply to Teach For America where they are trained for 4 weeks
over the summer to be an effective, qualified teacher (LMFAO) and remember I DID NOT say certified! Then after
committing to 2 years they get their own little classroom. Now mind you many don't last and others just do it to pay
off student loans before returning to college. Those that DO stay DO NOT want to stay in the classrooms they waht to
run the show because Annie Best and others tell them they are so great and the veteran teachers are old, lazy, and can;t
teach so steer clear of them. Point of fact, look at where some of the TFAers at Lee HS who are NOW principals! WTF..
.it used to be you had t tach for a good 10 to 15 years before you would have ever thought of moving up! But with Grier
and his idiotic ideas, he seems to think that these kids are going to save HISD. Some will turn out to be great teachers
and leaders but the major move on after their time because it was not what they thought or was told it would be! So here
is alittle about TFAers in a nutshell.
by Veteran (Aug 15, 2012)

Extravagance of HISD bond election in perspective: Houston voters will be
asked to approve
$2.7 billion in bonds in November, $1.9 billion put
up by HISD

Guidry News report on August 9, 2012 board meeting: Aren't all those abstention
votes getting old?

School at 3200 Rosedale still not named
This new structure was to be called "Turner-Lockhart" before Paula Harris
& friends decided to disrespect the Reverand George B.M. Turner by
removing his name.

Citizens from Houston's Third Ward addressed the board, asking that
the name not be changed or shortened.  Harris suggested returning
the naming process back to committee.

The last word houstonisdwatch heard about this conflict concerned
an NCAAP lawsuit against HISD over what they believe to be an unfair
and discriminatory naming process.

Robert Glasser, Democrat District 22, calls bond election a referendum on the
HISD Trustees' leadership

What the Chronicle DOES NOT say, but needs to be said, is that the bond election IS a referendum on the
way the board manages its affairs.

As is correctly pointed out, they may not be breaking the rules, but they MAKE the rules, and if they don't implemen
t proper rules they are just as guilty of mismanagement and malfeasance as if they violated proper policies.
Just because they are not violating rules does not mean that their actions are ethical.

The ballot in November may not give voters the opportunity to impose ethical restrictions on the board, but it WILL
give us an opportunity to send a 'vote of confidence' message and limit their ability to spend even more taxpayer money
and obligate the NEXT generation of taxpayers into paying for their decisions.

Now, let the lobbying begin for the passage of this bond vote- paid for by the many consultants, contractors, bond lawyers,
and 'friends' of the board that will benefit from these taxpayer financed expenditures. Spend your money- we are 'wise'
to your intentions!

With ample doses of arrogance and condescension, Pearson defends TAKS and STAAR,
accuses Texas professor of drawing "wild conclusions"
From the Texas Tribune:

"...Stroup’s analyses, which he conducted with two other UT-Austin researchers, question how Pearson applies
“item response theory,” a widely accepted method of devising standardized exams, to create the state’s TAKS
exams. Using that method, he said, test developers select questions based on a model that correlates students’
ability with the probability that they will get a question right..."
Read Morgan Smith's complete report.

BELLAIRE PRINCIPAL UPDATE: Mike Lunceford, District V trustee, met with Bellaire's
SDMC Wednesday evening. A faculty & community meeting will be held Thursday,
August 16, 2012, at 6 p.m. in the multipurpose room to discuss the principalship.

HISD is to name a principal by August 20, 2012.

As of August 15, 2012, HISD has 221 teaching vacancies.

More on Haberman as an ineffective screening tool
from hisdwatcher: Brittany Maloney is not certified to be an A.P.

It is obvious that the Haberman does not validate the qualifications of an Administrator. That is
assuming that all administrators are subjected to this tool.

A perfect example would be Britney Maloney is an Assistant Principal at Kashemere High school
that-according to SBEC does not have the qualifications. But would we expect anything different
from the current SIO of Apollo Schools?
by hisdwatcher (Aug 13, 2012)

On the other hand, supporting Ms. Maloney:
I'm going to go out on a limb here, probably to the dismay of the majority of the readers, and at least stick
up for Ms. Maloney. I know that will probably incite many of you to question my "allegiance" (a stupid conclusion,
we're here for kids) or make some statement about my ignorance as a teacher, but while I have not worked
closely with her, I have been at Lee for longer than most teachers and have seen her perform.

Yes, it's true that she may not be the most qualified person. The fact is that I can think of things I would
improve in her teaching... just as ALL of us have ways to improve in our teaching (even the best of us do).
However, I find it bewildering in reading the statements that she was a marginal teacher. Who exactly are
these bloggers and what is this conclusion based off of? I'm not saying she was teacher of the year, but in
my past time at Lee, I can name on one hand the people who are still at Lee and who would have observed
Maloney in the classroom. So that claim is baffling at best.

Second, I recall a time when Maloney was brought to tears out of sympathy of hearing a student's story, an
exchange that a few of us witnessed. I just remembered thinking that clearly, she really did care about
the kids. I think before you parade about ulterior motives or her pursuit of her own ambitions, it's unfair to
assume that she has no priorities that involve kids.

My biggest focus is what I can do with my classroom. I read the site constantly, and I pick my fights
sparingly, but couldn't help but speak up at the perplexing comments I was reading. I don't know what's
best for Kashmere, because I don't work there, nor does "Lee Teacher". I think I would just like this blog
to transition to creating real solutions rather than spewing toxicity and being a venue for complaining.
by Random (Aug 15, 201

What goes on outside a classroom can impact what goes on inside....
In response to your last paragraph, I do agree that we are here for the kids but you have to
understand that what goes on outside the classroom can impact what goes on inside. During my first
year at Lee I chose to focus on what was going on in the classroom. While I tried to do that my second
year when Apollo was introduced, it was impossible. Though admin never picked on me personally, the
environment was so toxic that I felt it.

As for any comments I have made about Ms. Maloney, I am a former TFAer and I have worked closely
with her.
by Former Lee Teacher (Aug 15, 2012)

HISD's choice of principals & assistant principals called into question
From adios:
Isn't that interesting. I know of SEVERAL highly qualified people who have been in HISD for several
years already. Have been extremely SUCCESSFUL in the classroom and have wonderful management
and people skills. And ARE CERTIFIED by the state of Texas to be principals but do not have jobs as
principals in HISD because they can't pass that stupid Hauberman test!!!! And yet we see people with
no certification being assistant principals. That is horrible. Most districts will not even interview you as
an assistant principal unless you are fully certified as a principal. HISD just wants you to pass that stupid
test. And I know of people cheating on that test. They get a buddy in HR or somewhere to help them answer
the questions correctly. So that test is just a big fat joke!
by adios (Aug 13, 2012)

Brittany Maloney will not be an asset to Kashmere
From Lee teacher:
What is really sad about Britney Maloney is that she has had very little time in the classroom, was only a
marginal teacher, but was put in leadership by Davila. She became one of "them" and in doing so, hurt Lee
more than helped it. Because she is young, I doubt she has any idea the part she plays in the mass destruction
of Lee teachers and and their reputations. As with most TFAers, it was all about her. I don't know if some day these
TFAers will realize their foolishness and thinking everyone was below them but I watched as Britney stood by
when her friends and collegues were picked off one by one. Then, when Davila moves on, Davila helped her
move on. She will not be an asset to Kashmere, a school that needs strong leaders. It will still be about her.
It is a dangerous concept to promote these young people after the minimum time in the classroom. It hurts
by Lee Teacher (Aug 14, 2012

From Former Lee Teacher:
With regards to Ms.Maloney's promotion to AP at Kashmere, I think that the new SIO of Apollo Schools
(Davila) sent her there to be a "spy" like she was at Lee. It only makes sense that Davila would want
one of her followers to be an insider to get information on who the "bad" teachers are.
Note: If you are a Kashmere teacher or know one please warn them to be careful.
by Former Lee Teacher (Aug 14, 2012)

From Out of Here:
Unfortunately, it is true. Ms. Maloney was used as a spy at Lee. I also agree with above responses that
Ms. Maloney didn't have very strong teaching skills and her classroom management was a mess. Being
promoted by Davila this year, as are several others, is probably to enhance Davila's life as an SIO. Good
Luck Kashmere!So sad that ineffective APs are being hired. Grier is cutting his own throat and doesn't
know it!
by Out of Here! (Aug 14, 2012)

Examiner profile of Kashmere's new principal Amber Elaine Wilson


This rumor has got to be a joke. There's just no way the former social studies
teacher who jumped around HISD's administrative jobs if prepared to lead
Bellaire. He;s having a difficult time leading Westbury.

houstonisdwatch blogger A Citizen described Westbury:
My niece is a student as Westbury, and it appears to be a mess over there. I've been over there mutiple
times to meet with the principle and he is never on campus. He's always away for lunch or a meeting
with Alaniz (the SIO) or Larry Marshall or one of the Friends of Westbury. Is he a coward or is that his
reason for allowing his school business manager run the school? Many of her teachers have left
because of the way he treats the teachers over there, and apart from the students protesting once
in a walk-out, nothing is being done to get rid of him. The school's TAKS scores took a nosedive,
and he still has his job.
by A Citizen (Jul 5, 2012)

Fleeing Blackshear only to enrage Elrod
Linda Bellard's assignment to Elrod ES was a lateral transfer
The higher up an educator climbs on the career ladder the more
ominous a lateral transfer becomes, especially when the lateral
transfer is made within the same school district.

Moving from one city to another or going across state lines negates any
negatives associated with a lateral transfer in most cases.

A principal who makes a lateral transfer within a district has to justify
the move and frame it as positive. Otherwise, the principal confronts
charges that he or she wasn't suitable for the position, couldn't get
along with parents, just wasn't a good fit.

houstonisdwatch has documented Grier's disinterest in listening
to parents and faculty members regarding principal choice.
On Feb. 7, 2011, even Grier agreed to the reassignment of
Linda Bellard from Blachshear ES to Elrod.

In fact, Bellard was described this way in her reassignment letter:
"You have many of the qualities that the parents and staff at
Elrod are looking for in a principal -- high expectations, knowledge
of curriculum and best practices and your desire to build parent
and community partnerships.

See the assignment letter here. (response to houstonisdwatch's
Texas Open Records Act request)

Parents in the Elrod community hasve not been impressed with
Bellard and have stated for the record that she doesn't have
any desire to build parent and community partnerships.

Her former staff at Blackshear offered muted praise, described
the environment there as professional yet stiff. Ms. Bellard
was interested in academics and didn't put much time into
building staff relationships.

She was generally vindicated in the major bullying investigation
of a student referred to P.V., except by the school nurse, who
blasted Bellard's lack of involvement, knowledge about the students
who attended her school, and failure to respond to serious charges of

Whatever happend at Blackshear had deep enough roots to
remove Bellard as principal. The way Grier has behaved in
relation to the Kashmere community means that, even if the
Elrod community had protested Bellard's assignment - logically
stating her unfitness at one elementary school didn't make her
any more appropriate for another - Grier wouldn't have listened.

Grier will use multi-year administrative contracts to groom more bully principals, force
principals to be totally complicit with his demands

Read between the lines here. The decision makers are Grier and his hand-picked
(and expanding) team of school officers. The criteria looks to be objective,
but which prinicpals are selected for longer contracts remains to be seen.
"In an effort to attract and retain the highest quality principals, the administration
would like to begin using multi-year performance contracts to these administrators,
based on demonstrated performance..."

If HISD threw out the worthless Haberman Protocol - for which effectiveness data
is just now being gathered - and allowed principals autonomy to run their campuses
and build a culture of collaboration, instead of fear, intimidation and bullying,
HISD wouldn't waste time and resources replacing principals, many of whom
could pass the Haberman Protocol but were clueless in the common sense
decision-making necessary to run a school. 

After all, who really has faith in HISD's selection of principals?
From @ Former Lee Teacher:
I can't say I'm surprised that Quintero is now Principal. Is she even qualified? I heard another of Davila's
APs is going to be a Principal at an elementary school now. I guess it pays to sell your soul to DR, you'll be
rewarded. Glad I escaped that the world of HISD. Good luck to you @Lee Teacher. May the odds be ever in
your favor.
by @ Former Lee Teacher (Aug 9, 2012)

@ Former Lee teacher. I too have left Lee. Although Quintero isn't the monster Davila is, she really doesn't
have what Lee needs to lead them further. She really is a pawn of Davila's. I'm quite sure that is the entire
reason lthey have placed her in that position. The STAAR scores were incredibly awful so obviously, Davila's
stop everything and test, test, test didn't work. (nor her insanity of getting rid of highly qualified teachers_ As far
as the AP's, Davila has indeed placed them at other schools although the TFAers have very, very little experience
in the classroom. What is a highly qualified principal look like? Or, a highly qualified AP? Maybe we should create
our own requirements here on this website.
by Former Lee teacher (Aug 9, 2012)

And in more colorful language from Mack:
A highly qualified Principal or AP ( what a joke) in HISD can be identified by the "huge" lips that they use to
kiss Grier's ass! Also, they may be seen with a can of "fix-a-flat" which is needed to re-inflate their oversized
egos and to keep the shapes of their hollow heads in tack because if you took all their brains and put them
together it wouldn't be enough to fill one of these empty headed bozos! HISD is one big ass joke!!!! And if it
weren't for the poor kids who have to attend these schools this would be laughable! Sad state that this
district has been allowed to fall below North Forest lead by the incompetent morons that haven't a clue
what the heck they are doing besides drawing a huge fat check and for what???? Vote no! Vote damn
NO on this bond mess!!!!
by Mack (Aug 9, 2012)

Grier creates market for unqualified school administrators
From Qualified?
Who is qualified these days? Quintero has an elementary background. She was probably not a very good
elementary teacher either. What does she know about HS? All she knows is Davila. That's it! Davila has
three AP's now in principal positions. Let's see how they do next year. Why Davila has been given this power
is beyond me. Maybe it's a reward from Grier for having to put up with all his mess.

Puppet Master Davila Has a nice ring to it.

Where's Roland?? Has anyone seen Roland Fryer? Did he take the money and run? I bet he shows up again
when HISD is awarded Race to the TOP. Any takers?
by Qualified? (Aug 9, 2012)

Grier leading the HISD trustees
Board allocates even more funds for the "implementation of a formative assessment
system and universal screener to provide predictive and diagnostic assessments
and to negotiate and execute contracts with Public Consulting Group, Inc., and
Imagination Station, Inc.

Is this HISD admitting its benchmarks have been way off the mark? The district is looking
for the "best value" in a formative assessment and universal screener "solution" aligned
with district's curriculum standarnds.

So the district wants Public Consultant's EdPlan and Imagination Station, Inc..
First year cost: $3,288,206 
Staff requirements: One administrator & one data clerk.
Just what HISD needs or more administrative bloating from Grier and the trustees?
This item did not get a favorable review from the trustees except, of course, Larry Marshall,
who claims HISD "has plenty of money in its savings." Of course, we know from the bond
vote last Thursday that when called upon to vote on instructional issues, the board members
fall in line behind Grier, like little ducklings following their mama.
From Unbelievable:
Mr. Editor, please read Ericka Mellon's tweets from the Board Agenda review on this past Monday. Grier is
ecommending spending $33 MILLION $ ON A TESTING PROGRAM!! (Training teachers how to develop tests!)
And he is requesting 5 NEW STAFF MEMBERS TO IMPLEMENT THE PROGRAM! We're cutting teachers and
he continues the bloating. Even though it was weak, Paula Harris did protest and ask why current staff couldn't
implement; she also stated that she would like to see teachers trained to teach reading instead of testing. What
you want to bet she votes YES on Thursday? Can you believe that when others are trying to reduce the amount of
testing in schools, he would have the audacity to make this request? Mr. Bingle, please find out more about this
testing program; I bet it is connected to friends and family. Grier is out of control!
by Unbelievable! (Aug 8, 2012)

houstonisdwatch bloggers weigh in on bond:
From Right On!
I am on board with all the bloggers that are saying to vote NO on the bond issue. I iive in the 3rd ward
area and to put in plainly these schools suck big time. We have hard working dedicated people working
in these run down buildings. With the exception of the new Lockhart-Turner campus, we are not seeing
much bond money in this area for the amount of property taxes that we are paying. Can anybody say Ryan
or Yates? I know we should be about the kids, but Team Grier is not about the kids. If Paula Harris and
Company would grow some balls and have Grier hit the bricks, they would have more support. 35 million
for a testing program when you have school buildings that I guarantee are not ready when the kids return?
HISD will work the maintenance department and the plant operators like dogs to get these buildings ready
and it still won't happen. Say hell no to the bond vote. The public has to hit the message home to this board
so they can get the message that Grier needs to move on.
by Right On! (Aug 9, 2012)

Education Grrrrl:
And our kids need sparkling new facilities to help them achieve?

It would be great if the taxpayers realized that the teachers at Bellaire, Lamar, DeBakey, Carnegie, and HSPVA
helped make those students top notch. If there was a bond election to retain those great teachers which would
turn out successful kids by the thousands, the Houston taxpayers would be throwing money at HISD. But since
many of those teachers are gone--these fab new buildings won't do us much good. The Grier PR machine has
their work cut out for them--doing smoke and mirrors--while many of us know they probably just plan to slash
and burn, just with more money if the bonds pass.
by Education Grrrrl (Aug 10, 2012)

Contractor ties to HISD board member from B.E.:
Since the vote was 8-1 for the bond let's have this board agree no company who has ties to any board member
shall be eligible to bid for contracts. Let's just once not have a board member's BF get a contract. I don't know of
anything more repulsive than continuing to see board member's BF's filling their pockets at the cost of other
by B.E. (Aug 11, 2012)

HISD to march forward with Grier's pet screening device, the Haberman, with no verifiable data
to support it

"In the 2011-2012 school year, the Haberman Foundation has been HISD's partner in screening
and interviewing prospective teachers, assistant principals, deans and principals.  The
Haberman selection tools help assess whether applicants have the characteristics,
values, and beliefs predictive of success in an urban school setting.

Human resources...strongly believes that the Haberman selection tools will continue to allow
HISD to effectively keep the bar high for these hires."

Belief based on fantasy, not data. Nationally, Haberman is considered to be pretty much a joke,
and some of the worst principals HISD has ever hired successfully navigated through the

Did the board even try to challenge Grier on this one, a critical point as it essentially controls
all personnel hires who work directly with children?

Continuing Haberman is an Ann Best suggestion (she's still here), and that should tell
you everything you need to know about it.

Of course not.


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