-- Fred Costello, November 17, 2016
The Monday November 14 FCPS School Board Meeting was a Garza lovefest that got rained out due to a sudden downpour of truth and honesty. The school board eagerly wanted to forget the recent failed passage of the "meals tax" and any "new national mandates" that emerged across the country, and instead spent 40 minutes gushing over outgoing School Superintendent Garza by endlessly repeating such surreal accolades as Garza being open-minded, caring, honest, fair, and representing the needs of all students.
Unfortunately, the mutual admiration party was doused by Johnny Raincloud, who came along leaving many frowny faces as a thunderclap of frustrated and angry parents lambasted the outgoing superintendent Garza with an unexpected departing gift reminding everyone in the room of her true legacy. (The videos of the seven speakers that confronted Garza may be found at the 50:05 minute mark.):
The first speaker was a seasoned and weathered father named John who thanked the outgoing superintendent, but at the same time advised that the new superintendent clean up the softporn and the negative and degrading material taught in the school Family Life Education (FLE) curriculum (aka, Sex Ed). He specifically asked that the new superintendent make it their priority not to stop showing to 14 year old girls the sinister and dark FLE video promoting incestual rape of girls by their fathers. He also wonders how they can promote the FLE curriculum innocuously as "Family Life" Education as it promotes only negative views of fathers and family, and is void of any lessons in love, purpose, benefit, morality, and hope.
Next came Bethany who advocated that the new school superintended be someone who represents all students (not just a vocal super small minority). She also pointed out that the outgoing superintendent in implementing policy 1450 has failed to represent: rape and sexual assault survivors carrying trauma; special needs students (who may suffer from depression and be suicidal); economically disadvantaged students (who have additional barriers to overcome and do not need more confusion and chaos); female athletes exposed to increased injury and unfairness; and all females as the schools violate Title IX by allowing males to violate the privacy and safety of females and force them out of bathrooms, showers, and locker rooms and deny them their basic rights.
Clare then spoke and warned school board members and educators not to bully parents and students by forcing their views on sex and arrogantly presume that they are more educated, knowledgeable, and caring of children than the parents themselves. She also said she was deeply disturbed by the current FLE (Sex Ed) curriculum that is misleading, inaccurate, suggestive, provocative, and promotes illicit moral license to engage in all sorts of harmful and destructive behavior taught in the curriculum, as she personally witnesses daily the failures at the pregnancy crisis center where she works and sees: unwanted pregnancies, abortion, harmful and deadly STDs, impoverished single parents, dysfunction, low self-esteem, depression, hopelessness, suicide, and a long list of increasing victims caused by the school's FLE (Sex Ed) which promotes the false and inaccurate notion of "Safe Sex".
Mike, who is a concerned Chinese-American father, then advised that the new school superintendent focus on the needs of the students, do a better job managing the budget with limited resources, and listen to and involve parents instead of treating them with scorn (i.e., deplorables). He then showed a picture of the "sexy crystal palace" that the school superintendent and staff currently works in, and then contrasted against the third-world trailer his son currently is taught out of in the Fairfax County Public Schools (which does not even have bathrooms or running water). He then questioned the judgment to allow males in the female bathrooms, showers, and locker rooms, despite resulting in many girl students living in fear. Finally, he highlighted that the revenues from property tax increases has far outgrown the rate of growth of students and inflation, and wonders where all the money is being wasted as there appears to be no fiscal discipline or accountability in the school system?
Alice, who is a mother in the Tysons Corner area, lambasted the superintendent and school board for allowing local schools to be flooded and overcrowded with additional students due to housing over development despite previous promises to construct new schools as a condition on obtaining permission to start the new construction projects. Where is the money that was suppose to be set aside for all the new students, as she also relayed the new horrifying message that they do not plan to construct any new schools until the year 2030? She also pointed out there is a continuous pattern of deafness from ignoring parents, not just in setting priorities in spending, but across the school system and no better exemplified in their hasty implementation of the controversial and ill-conceived policy 1450.
Rubi, who served in the US Military and is a mother of a young child in the schools, expressed her utter frustration and disapproval for the outgoing superintendent who completely ignored the 200,000 Latinos in Fairfax County who are universally opposed to policy 1450 as it harmfully impacts their 40,000 children in the public schools. She stated that Latinos are not bigots for wanting to keep males out of the female bathrooms, showers, and locker rooms as there are obvious safety and privacy concerns. She also said that many Latino families work overtime to survive and feel used and exploited by the superintendent and school board that has misplaced priorities, disregards laws and civil liberties, freely discriminates against others, and is creating a hostile learning environment for students with their ill-conceived policies that destroy public trust. Lastly, she said that as public awareness spreads by word of mouth of the reckless and endangering policies being implemented in the schools, the 200,000 strong Latino Community will respond by holding all parties accountable.
Finally, a concerned and educated mother named Meredith spoke frankly and honestly that the "meals tax" was really a referendum on the superintendent and school board's poor management and complete disregard for parental rights. That is, parents will not support them when they are being excluded, discarded, and violated. Instead, she suggested that they work with concerned parents to foster a cooperative relationship that recognizes their needs, instead of ignoring them which results in a hostile and combative environment. Unfortunately, Meredith's wisdom appears to be lost on many.
One thing for certain, not everyone is happy with the outgoing superintendent's performance the past three years. For all is not going as well as the school board falsely portrays, as the parental and taxpayer criticism appears to be spreading and revealing a wide assortment of many neglected and hidden problems within the county schools. Please recognize and thank these brave speakers for exercising their First Amendment rights and raising these important issues that need attention and action. The good news is that the constant drumbeat of voices and public pressure is bearing some positive results.
Please be aware that school board member Elizabeth Schultz stated that concerned parents and taxpayers will be allowed to contribute to the selection of the new school superintendent by being able to participate in upcoming online surveys, community meetings, and feedback mechanisms they will be offering through the search firm contractor (HYA). So it is inherent that good citizens be ready, willing, and able to participate to shape the type of school superintendent we want and deserve for our children.
Congratulations, its a small, but important victory. Now its up to us to make the best of the opportunity.
-- Email comments posted by David Swink, Fairfax County Taxpayers Alliance