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Some's Hot, Some's Not 

by B.K. Carter
This column expresses the personal opinions/views of the writer. If you would like to express your opinions/views regarding the column, write a SIGNED letter to the editor. Name can be withheld by request with a valid day time and phone number.

Iím not board with the board election ..... There are times when you should really be glad I've been around for a long time because sometimes I know where all the bodies are buried. And sometimes I even know about the bodies that aren't buried yet and are still stinking.

Recently I received an e-mail from someone who still works for Fort Bend Independent School District. The message was on school district e-mail. This e-mail chided me for not giving more publicity to the candidacy of David Malone and Chip Pike, two former district employees who are now running for the school board.

First, Star columnists Jon Matthews has been giving their candidacy plenty of publicity. I don't ever give either Jon and Susan (The World's Most Dangerous, etc.) their marching orders. They write what they want.

Second, the e-mail was sent via the school district network. Although I noticed the time was during the lunch period, I still don't think the school district e-mail should be used to tout the candidacy of any one candidate. As a matter of fact, both Malone and Pike has received a "cease and desist" letter from the school's attorney, David Feldman, about them campaigning on school property and using school e-mail.

According to Malone, who I contacted about the letter, he nor Pike have ever campaigned on school district property. Malone, a former assistant superintendent under ex-superintendent Don Hooper, said he attended a bond issue meeting one night and passed out some business cards, which he thought was perfectly acceptable. Then he said he called the district's in-house attorney about using the e-mail addresses of some of his former friends still employed by the district. He said he was told that their addresses, published on the district's web site, were in the public domain. Malone said his e-mail to the former colleagues already admonished them to avoid using their school district e-mail to contact people about his and Pike's candidacy.

Then I've received several calls from people telling me that before Malone and Pike left the district, they established their new business on school district time. Malone has denied that and says these people are just afraid that he and Pike, if elected to the board, would know what questions to ask.

Malone is running against Sue Hausenstein. Sue has served on the board for two terms. I know a lot of people are campaigning to get rid of all the sitting board members because they blame the bond issue fiasco on them. I've known Sue since she first ran. I know few parents that are as dedicated to the schools as Sue is. She spends many unpaid hours each week involved in educational issues, and not just sticking her nose in the running of the school, but volunteering in several aspects that directly help the students.

I also know that she does her homework on issues that come up before the board, and she does them BEFORE the board meeting.

However, David Malone also has several students attending Fort Bend ISD so I don't think his candidacy is strictly just a "get even" deal. But I am nervous that he is a former employee.

I've always had several attributes that I look at when supporting a school district candidate. I think they should have children in the district; I think they shouldn't be former employees, current employees, married to current employees, or maybe even former teachers from another district; and I think they should attend some school board meetings before deciding to run. In other words, school board members, in my book, should be interested parents with no personal agenda except for getting the best education for the best price for our kids.

More on the war ..... I'm glad they didn't kill "Baghdad Bob," the moniker the news media has given the Iraqi information minister. (I wouldn't start to spell his real name.) Anyway, Baghdad Bob reminds me of some of our elected officials. He's the one that says, "There are no Americans here. Oh, there were some out at the airport, but they are committing suicide now." He's the only comic relief in this terrible war.

The reason he reminds me of some elected officials is their refusal to look at reality and when they say, "High taxes. We don't have high taxes; we just have high valuations." Or "It's for the children." or "We're a very conservative county/city/school district. We don't spend much money."

B. K. Carter is publisher of the Fort Bend Star. You can e-mail her at

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   Last Update:  April 30, 2003