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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Ha! How a Lawsuit Doesn't Help

So I had followed up on Dr. Enfield's e-mail to Charlie and me about the NTN contract. She did answer several questions (but ignored some others). Hence, the follow-up. Now here was my most burning question:

"So there is an signed "agreement" between SPS and NTN but not a contract. This seems quite odd. The Board voted on NTN two Board meetings ago; was that to agree to NTN being the provider of these services but not what specific services? So then the big question: When will there be a signed contract?"

And here is her answer given today:

"Thank you for your comments/questions related to Seattle Public Schools’ contract with NTN. A lawsuit has been filed related to this contract. Given that litigation is pending, we are not able to answer specific questions.
Dr. Susan Enfield"

I doubt that she will be able to stave off anyone seeing the final contract when it is signed. So I'll let the Board know that. You can't hide behind a lawsuit in order to not answer questions especially the most basic one: when can we see the signed contract?

See, it goes both ways. If I can't see the signed contract because of the lawsuit, they don't get to open the STEM program because their contract is in dispute because of the lawsuit.

13 comments:

Joe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
wsnorth said...

Maybe I really don't want to know, but the "purple book" projections show Hale about the same as last year, not growing. And it shows Ballard and West Seattle High shrinking (both have been full with wait lists for years). Jill Hudson is great, though, we miss her at Madison Middle School.

Joe said...

We are so grateful to have Jill Hudson at Hale. We understand why she is missed at Madison- she's a fantastic and inspiring leader!

zb said...

"If I can't see the signed contract because of the lawsuit, they don't get to open the STEM program because their contract is in dispute because of the lawsuit. "

I doubt that it works that way.

Charlie Mas said...

I don't understand why the appeal of the Board decision makes any difference in the questions that Dr. Enfield answers to the public.

Isn't the truth the same with or without the appeal? Won't the truth come out anyway in the discovery process?

What is she trying to conceal?

dan dempsey said...

So where is the difference?

When legal action is applied the SPS will not give an answer.

Under normal conditions the SPS will not give a straight answer.

Tick, Tock, Tick, Tock,

The SPS has until March 25th to turn over...... filed, certified Transcript.....
... lets see if they can do it this time as they have NOT been successful with this very often...

as required by state law:
Transcript filed, certified.

RCW 28A.645.020

Within twenty days of service of the notice of appeal, the school board, at its expense, or the school official, at such official's expense, shall file the complete transcript of the evidence and the papers and exhibits relating to the decision for which a complaint has been filed. Such filings shall be certified to be correct.

These folks rarely perform the above task to any court's or plaintiffs' satisfaction.

dan dempsey said...

The biggest problem will be how can a decision to sign a contract to copy a chain of 41 substandard schools be anything but arbitrary and capricious, especially when the contract still does not exist and parts of the action report were inaccurate.

Welcome to the Twilight Zone know as the Seattle Public Schools.

If MGJ thinks the state is going to dump two million into this bad idea just because SB 6696 passed and "Race to the Top" has money, DO NOT COUNT on IT.

dan dempsey said...

See if this helps....

A writ of mandamus

A person can be said to be aggrieved only when he is denied a legal right by someone who has a legal duty to do something and abstains from doing it.

..hummmm ... "abstains from doing it."

Sounds familiar .... does not that happen regularly?

As someone said about the Spector ruling .... hey aren't almost all the decisions "Arbitrary and Capricious"

If that is the actual situation then "Someone is abstaining from "Doing the Right thing" and many persons might be aggrieved.

Ergo it could be time for a ....
A writ of mandamus ... now where shall we file it?

So many decisions to make ... when dealing with the SPS.

dan dempsey said...

In an so confused.... there are several plaintiffs in this NTN appeal. Joy Anderson, Rickie Malone, Marissa V. Essad, Joan Sias, Stacey Guzek. I am clear on that and Seattle School District #1 is the Defendant. ... but then the fog begins .....

PLEASE clarify...

the Action Report says this:
TIMELINE FOR IMPLEMENTATION/EVALUATION

Board award contract: 2/3/2010
Contract work begins: immediately

Target for completion (year 1): 8/31/2010

So how does one award a contract and immediately start work when there is NO Contract?

RECOMMENDED MOTION

I move that the New Technology Network contract in the amount of $800,000 be approved.

But "the" contract being approved does not exist. So when will there be an opportunity for public comment on whether the contact should be approved?

Hey didn't we already do this ... oh yes I was confused as I thought there was a contract.

It is the continuing saga of the NTN Huh?

These monies will help purchase instructional materials, professional development, coaching, professional development and technical assistance.

(Well at least we get two doses of professional development. I am clear on that.)

dan dempsey said...

"This contract" (what contract where?) covers a three-year implementation period and a six-month planning period.

Is this now perfectly clear to everyone?

I can hardly wait for the filed, certified Transcript to arrive.

Imagine trying to write a Plaintiffs Opening Brief without the certified Transcript ....

Does anyone have a clue what is going on here?

=============================

In other News... Remember when MGJ decided to appeal the Spector decision and the gang of "Four" who will apparently vote "For" anything MGJ is "For". The 4-4-4 need to be strongly criticized for the promotion of ongoing nonsense.

Marty McLaren writes: So far, the total cost of this lawsuit has been $13,140. Further, our attorney estimates that our costs for responding to the School district appeal of Judge Spector's decision will be $7,000 to $9,000 more – for a total of at least $20,000 – Yikes!
(Marty is talking about MGJ's appeal of the Math Lawsuit won on 2-4-10 not the NTN contract signing on 2-3-10 in which there was no contract)

Two thoughts:
#1 An effectively filed writ of mandamus if successful will end all this nonsense.. almost immediately. Once again the SPS drives constituents to the last Straw .. Look for a writ of Mandamus to be filed with the Washington State Supreme Court.

#2 I have explained to a few legislators, some with lots of power, that students in Seattle Schools are being deprived of their article IX constitutional rights guaranteed by ... guaranteed by absolutely nothing ... because there is no enforcement provision.

We have a Superintendent and the 4-4-4 who appear to be an outlaw gang of 5 at this point in time.

Consider this:

#1 Exclude evidence in decision-making (again)

#2 Lose a court decision because of excluding critical evidence.

#3 Refuse to adjust your decision-making by refusing to Obey an Order of Remand ... because using evidence is apparently offensive.

So kids get their constitutional rights only when someone comes up with at least $20,000 to secure one right for them.
====================
Proposed Legislative Solution:
If a school district loses a lawsuit that involves an article IX violation they are responsible for the winners attorney fees up to $20,000. If they appeal and lose the appeal, then Maximum limit on attorney fees goes to $50,000.

This is legislation that needs
to be enacted in the 2011 legislative session.

===============
In the meantime in a few weeks we shall begin work on recalling all 4 of the 4-4-4:
Steve Sundquist, Pater Maier, Sherry Carr, and Harium-Martin Morris.

The Republic is at risk or is already gone as laws are no longer observed and are regularly violated.

====================
If the recall is successful then four seats will be vacant until the 2011 fall election.

Then after a successful recall, we should be encouraging the new mini-Board to fire MGJ with cause and NO buy out.

For she is not only the Superintendent but also the secretary of the school board. It seems it was her job to produce the contract that wasn't there.

Who produced the Action Report? Yup it was MGJ ==>>

DATE: February 2, 2010

FROM: Dr. Maria Goodloe-Johnson, Superintendent

School Board Action Report
“Every student achieving, everyone accountable”

Let us strongly demand Accountability.

TITLE AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Program at Cleveland High School

An academic program consisting of the Academy of Life Sciences and the Academy of Engineering and Design.
=============================

Well at least I am clear on the Basics ... Five people need to go.

dan dempsey said...

Charlie Mas said...

I don't understand why the appeal of the Board decision makes any difference in the questions that Dr. Enfield answers to the public.

Isn't the truth the same with or without the appeal? Won't the truth come out anyway in the discovery process?

What is she trying to conceal?
=================================

Mr. Mas,

I appears you think that truth is something like an absolute that exists. You know exists like say a written contract exists.

The SPS just makes up truth as they go along. Think of it as a just in time delivery process.

It has looked that way to me for a long time.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Also, within the draft Contract is a provision that for a Master Plan created by the district with a timeline. If NTN doesn't get this, they can delay implementation. However, without a signed contract, how can the district move forward? Curious.

dan dempsey said...

Melissa,

You want curious.... here it comes.

Tick, Tock, Tick, Tock

The district asked Attorney Stafne for increased time on the 20 day limit to submit evidence for the filed certified transcript.

No way!! In the math Lawsuit they had one dog ate my homework and one did not appear. In 20 days it should be easy to submit evidence, unless the SPS is selectively deciding what to submit.

More than 20 days looks like perhaps evidence manufacturing time may be needed (this has gotten so screwy).