Thursday, December 18, 2014

Reader: Debbie Fort is a bad board member and "many people" agree with me

A reader just left a comment on the post about Joplin resident Ryan Jackson's open letter to the members of the Joplin R-8 Board of Education.

In the comment, the reader attacks board member Debbie Fort, after beginning by offering faint praise. This certainly seems like another of the comments that a handful of C. J. Huff enthusiasts (at this point, I would say there couldn't be more than a handful) aimed at me after it became obvious that the Turner Report was having an impact.

As I have discovered over the course of the past year and a half, there are highly placed people in the Joplin community, and they are not elected officials, who believe that everything that takes place has to fit in with their vision and they were willing to destroy, or try to destroy anyone who stands in their way.

Although I agree with Debbie Fort's vote on this particular issue, make no mistake about her "good intentions" or her competence.

 She was the highest paid elementary principal in the district at one time and her building had the worst, or close to worst, test scores (reference DESE website).

 She ignored and violated policy, someone should ask about milk money cash and PTO checking account. Now she sets in a seat and condemns others in the district for test scores? 

She had the training, hence the title DR., and couldn't produce results. She is no savior people! And frankly, she wasn't even a good principal. Now you think she is going to be a good board member? 

Please! She has an agenda and I for one, and many more agree, that it is not to do what is best for kids. It appears to be about vengeance and revenge.
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Anonymous said...

The poor level of writing in this post doesn't exactly convince me that the writer is a very highly informed person. I would have guessed someone who didn't do well in some capacity or another for Dr. Fort and has a grudge to settle. Otherwise, the commenter would have left specifics instead of inuendo, which does no one any good at all. Please, give us all of the details, or just hush.

Anonymous said...

It seems to me like things have become considerably better since Dr. Fort took a place on the Board. It's just so difficult to have to admit, though, isn't it? Pride goeth before a fall.

Anonymous said...

The writer must be a local comedienne ... Their statements are laughable.

I guess somehow this persons friends and comrades were all sick on voting day

Anonymous said...

Dr. Fort is by far the best member on the board right now. She was an amazing principal and the students loved her. Too bad not many can say that about the current Irving principal. Dr. Fort may not always agree with some of the decisions made by the board but what people don't know is how the board mistreats her behind closed doors. They are terrified that she will uncover the truth about our corrupt school board.

Anonymous said...

Dr. Fort was not a very good principal but she certainly has used those same skills to make the corruption come to light. Maybe she'll help the other board members remember why they're really there.

Anonymous said...

I have personally seen the effects of Debbie Fort's personal relationships and have known her well enough to know her motivations are not vengeance. Sooner or later you people in Huff's pocket need to accept that we are responding to his actions, his wastefulness - even people who wanted to like him and give him the benefit of the doubt had to shake their head at his poor planning. Look at all the money that we are spending to fix projects that were just not thought out or overseen with any degree of scrutiny. It's wastefulness due to poor oversight and planning. That is the hallmark of Huff, time and time again, from seating to ipad keyboards to delays/failed inspections at the high school level, etc.

Test scores are a dangerous thing to bring up in the context of Huff because Joplin Schools lags well behind the other area schools in all the percentages that actually matter from the state's perspective. Huff constantly tries to redirect to "graduation rates" but that is because he has focused on these at the expense of teaching; the scores that reflect learning on the part of students are significantly below Webb City, Carl Junction, etc. Graduation rates can be massaged, math scores not so much. Unfortunately, the latter are more important whether he chooses to acknowledge that or not.

Anonymous said...

The comments show at the Globe on the recent articles about Seatgate show that either

1. The majority of people are no longer buying what Huff and the Board majority are selling or

2. Turner has a lot of sock puppets.

I pick #1.

Anonymous said...

I personally enjoy watching Dr. Fort fight against the majority. If people truly had an interest in the welfare of Joplin students & not just how pretty a school is then they would fight as well.

Anonymous said...

Dear Reader:

I have personally known Deb for years. She might not always tell you what you want to hear, but she will always tell you what you need to know.

kitty chiwawa said...

I have nothing but high praise for Dr. Fort. Four of my kids attended Irving for a run of seven years. The school was run very efficiently, morale was good and we had a slew of teachers and staff investing in the student's success. Dr. Fort made sure the kids were taken care of while at school and at times even when they were having challenges at home. Remember the time she took in the young boy who had to live in a tent during winter due to family issues beyond his control? She gave of herself in personal ways to my sons and I appreciate her kindness and generosity to this day. If someone has a gripe with her, I suspect they had a child that may have needed a firm hand and perhaps a stern lecture to the parents. She was the one that could be counted on to use tact, grace and intelligence in handling students and staff at Irving.

Anonymous said...

Many people? Six worthless BOE members, Chuckie Huff, his cadre of professional booty smoochers, and maybe, just maybe the person who wrote this post.

Anonymous said...

She's certianly a better board member than principal.

Anonymous said...

This sounds just like JD HOGG. and yes, we all know which unqualified Director of Elementary Ed we are taking about. After sitting in meeting after meeting for getting "written" up for not parking my car directly in the lines, when she wasn't even driving a car to work, this sounds exactly like the poor grammar and English she uses. If I was Supt. of Joplin Schools, I would fire her, Stevens and Cravens on day one. Total waste of money, time and energy. Absolutely unqualified for thier jobs.

Anonymous said...

"" She ignored and violated policy, someone should ask about milk money cash and PTO checking account. Now she sets in a seat and condemns others in the district for test scores? ""
This one paragraph alone makes me cringe with the grammatical and knowledge errors it contains. Please Jennifer, if you are going to complain, get your facts straight and above all use the proper tense of words.

Milk money is dealt with by food service. They should have been sending out notifications to those in arrears.

Maybe someone should have been investigating the parent in charge of the PTO checkbook. Having held a high position myself, I know who is entrusted with the funds. Just food for thought.

Sits NOT Sets!! You claim to be an educator for Pete's sake!! Did they move you up too quickly? I have outsmarted all of you on several occasions without a teaching degree. It's not that difficult a job really. Let's do try a little harder, okay?

Anonymous said...

Grammar: "...sets in a seat..."

Robert N said...

I worked with Debbie in a professional setting while she was a principal, as I had children on my caseload that attended her school. When she attended meetings, she rarely had worthwhile suggestions and always looked like a deer caught in headlights when she was questioned. I hope that her failure as a principal has awakened her so that she can propel herself to be a valuable board member by educating herself on issues rather than being another puppet in the Huff & Sharp dog and pony show.