Thursday, February 14, 2008


Alies Muskin, former PTA President failed in her attempt at election to
the Board of Education despite endorsement by the teachers union,
Apple Ballot.

Has the Apple Ballot gone rotten? Alies Muskin, the former PTA President and sweetheart ofthe teachers union got crushed by Phil Kauffman and Tommy Le in the primary race for the AtLarge seat on the Montgomery County Board of Education. MoCo voters almost always dowhat they are told by the teachers union and vote the Apple Ballot, especially regarding schoolboard positions. What is different this election? According to my unofficial survey, voters areturned off by the ultra liberal positions of the current board. Current events, lawsuits, statementsof board members and the arrogance of the board turned voters against the incumbents and thosewho put them there. Here are some of the current board problems, never ending litigation withparents over sex education, unfairness toward disabled children (does the term autism meananything to the board?), discipline, violence in schools (do murders at football games come tomind? Rapes in schools and on buses come to mind?) Outright hatred of parent groups (PatO’Neill telling parents to “get out of town,” the refusal to even meet with parent groups overissues like busing only for rich kids at magnet schools, administration manipulation of test scoresand outright cheating by those in charge at some schools, abrupt cancelling of Learning Centers,discrimination against ex-gays, and refusal to accept federal abstinence funding. Gee, no wondervoters are turned off by the powers in charge.

Let’s not forget the enormous salary and perks given to Jerry Dean Weast. How does the boardreward Weast with fortune 500 CEO compensation when SAT scores are declining? Plus, MoCoschools are no longer the best in the state. (Are you moving to Howard County yet?) Weastruns the school system like a sub-prime mortgage company. At some point truth starts to comeout.

And then there is the beat down of any parent who dares object to board action. The old boardallowed 15 speakers to address the board for 2 minutes on any subject during meetings. Now theboard will only listen to speakers who address “agenda” issues. Nancy Navarro, the perpetratorof this new “policy” said it is “to encourage discussion on the issues before the board.” In otherwords, you can’t talk to us unless it’s about what we want to talk about. Fidel Castro would beproud Nancy. Maybe she could hire Castro to replace Weast. Hey, that would be animprovement.

With the recession upon us, let’s hope the voters will realize that throwing money at the BOEwill not improve our schools. We need responsible leadership looking out for parents. Thecurrent board was put in place by Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and their friends. It would benice to see ordinary parents elected, instead of those who want to perform social experiments onour children. Our kids are not guinea pigs and they don’t belong to the BOE.