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Bev's Burner
Some's Hot, Some's Not 

By B.K. Carter

"Bev Carter is the owner/publisher of the Fort Bend Star, winner of numerous state and national awards. She has been a voice of Fort Bend's largest circulated newspaper for 28 years."


 

I ainít buying it......FBISD board president Lisa Rickert shut down the board meeting at the Monday, Feb. 27 board meeting soon after the regular meeting got started. The districtís hired liar put out a press release that the meeting got started so late due to discipline hearings and some 40 parents signed up to speak about Lake Olympia Middle School. Supposedly, the board is now trying to quit at a decent time (particularly after I previously accused Rickert of not being a good leader because meetings dragged on), it was decided to adjourn before the agenda was half finished. The meeting will supposedly take up where they left off at the next meeting, which is a workshop meeting, meaning, I guess, that no action can be taken just as no audience members can speak.

That little trick of making sure the audience couldnít speak, undertaken as they were in the process of firing, whoops, retiring Baitland, has come back to bite them you know where. And I am not disparaging their school and community relations person. She is a good employee and does what the board tells her to do.

I ainít buying it because loud voices were heard coming from the back room during a break the board took between hearing from the parents. Supposedly Ken Bryant lost his temper with the acting superintendent and made her cry. He had to be taken to the woodshed by President Rickert. Obviously the spanking didnít do any good, because she quickly adjourned the meeting without any explanation soon after returning from the woodshed.

If the meeting were truly adjourned because of the lateness of the hour (11 p.m.), why didnít President Rickert announce that before adjournment? Nah, that part about the lateness of the hour was made up. She adjourned the meeting because she is finding she canít control her followers.

My sources say that the fly in the buttermilk was this little item on the agenda: Renewal of the Job Order Contract (JOC) agreements with HCCS (RHJ, Inc.), and TASB (Jamail Construction).

I find it strange that HCCS (RHJ, Inc.) got the contract a couple of years ago and now suddenly without any notice TASB (Jamail Construction) shows up on the agenda. And just about the time the board got to that, President Rickert shuts the meeting down. Donít those guys know how to stay bought?

Supposedly, Rickert et al. wanted to switch the business from HCCS (RHJ, Inc.) because they felt they werenít doing their job. I believe this is true because they had their minion Mitton call me and try to get me stirred up over the JOC again, since I had promised to keep my eye on them when they first got the contract without much experience.

Everything was all set to change to Jamil since RHJ wasnít doing their job, when Ken Bryant went off the reservation. Ken is African American as is the majority owner of RHJ and I guess blood is thicker than school board alliances. Perhaps Bryant, who is running for state representative as a Republican, needs campaign financing, something that large construction firms are wont to do. According to Commissioner Grady Prestage, who I quizzed about Bryantís action, Bryant went off the reservation months ago when he became a Republican.

In any event, it looked like Rickert et al. would be minus one al. so she canceled the meeting in the middle of it. What a leader!

Update! At the March 7 board meeting, RHJ was not even on the agenda. Without any previous notice, board discussion, or vote, the leftover agenda from Feb. 27 suddenly has only Jamil to be acted on.

I have covered every kind of meeting in Fort Bend County since 1978--28 years--and in all that time I have never been to a governmental meeting where the agenda was not completed. Many of these boards and bodies were comprised of members who hadnít the advantage of higher educations. Yet they were able to do their business in an organized manner. Makes you wonder, huh?

I used to think that somebody was going to wake up before any real damage was done. Now I just despair about the next 10 years at Fort Bend ISD.

I donít understand why the board couldnít have kept former Supt. Betty Baitland on board while they were trying to hire a new superintendent. At the very least, they could have hired the guy with more experience to run the district temporarily. But no, this board appointed a superintendent who would do exactly as told, only occasionally breaking down in tears and saying she just couldnít do it. Witnessing this type of behavior makes one wonder why in the world Baitland was ďretired.Ē Are they crazy? Nothing is working now. These people--Lisa Rickert, Ken Bryant, Stan Magee, and Laurie Caldwell-- have practically destroyed a school district in 10 months.

They canít do that, can they?.....FBISD Board member Stan Magee is supposedly squiring Wayne Howard around to FBISD schools even though Wayne, an ex-teacher himself, who was retired early by the school district and has no children in the district, has signed up to run for the board again. He ran last time but was defeated. I hope after electing Stan Magee that voters have learned their lesson about the dangers of electing someone with a personal agenda.

And Stan knows perfectly well that he should not be sack dragging Wayne Howard to campuses. He was banned from FBISD campuses himself during his own campaign. These people have no shame. Theyíve made me completely lose my sense of humor. Thereís nothing funny about the current situation.

 

Contact bkcstar@earthlink.net, if you would like to express your opinions/views regarding the column. Write a SIGNED letter to the editor with valid day time phone number--name can be withheld by request.

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   Last Update:  September 07, 2006