Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Randy Steele: Kimbrough supporters scared me off the board

Randy Steele told KOAM's Lisa Olliges that those who wanted Jim Kimbrough to fill the Joplin R-8 Board of Education seat left vacant by the resignation of Lane Roberts harassed him into resigning.

Steele says that the voters wanted change and that means someone new, not Kimbrough, should be named to the board, the same message that Mike Landis and Lynda Banwart were repeating numerous times during the board meeting Tuesday night.

To paraphrase the late Sen. Lloyd Bentsen, I know change, I have seen changing take place and you, Randy Steele, Mike Landis, and Lynda Banwart,  know nothing about change.


Anonymous said...

Jeff Koch said it best. The change the public wants isn't faces, its ideas.

Anonymous said...

So Kimbrough supporters mailed and called Randy Steele , anonymously - and he felt harassed and threatened... Yet Randy Steele sat silently and watched not only CJ Huff browbeat Deb Fort during a public meeting, made personal comments about her principalship and that was ok? Didn't speak up when CJ Huff tried to publicly humiliate Jennifer Martucci? And LIKED that post!!!!
Sat silently and didn't call foul when Linda Banwart told Deb Fort she DESERVED her verbal ass whipping ...
You watched two women harassed and you did NOTHING.

Randy Steele, I'm glad you resigned. Honestly, you resigned a long time ago by your inactions ....You were doing seat time, nothing more.

And if I were Jim Kimbrough , I'd be calling you on the carpet for dragging my name through the mud.

Anonymous said...


" time..."

Mayhaps I've spotted a JHS employee. :-)

It ate me up when they instituted that just to boost grad numbers.

Anonymous said...

Hey hey! Ho ho!

The status quo has got to go!

Buh Bye Mr. Steele.

Anonymous said...

There was a time that Mr. Steele could be respected but that stopped when he knew and allowed non-certified staff to be bullied and treated poorly. He allowed certified staff to be bullied and harassed. He allowed hard working, talented employees to be bullied and harassed until they quit or were fired (like Mr. Turner) based on lies.

Mr. Steele,
You haven't performed duties as a board member for a very long time. You certainly enjoyed your "club" and it's activities including free meals and slumber parties at tax payers' expense. Yes, the voters spoke but, once again, you and the other Huff-Clubbers aren't really listening. The change we want isn't in faces as much as in action. That would explain electing someone who couldn't serve and a list of signatures for Mr. Kimbrough to stay on the board.

Listen and get a clue!

Anonymous said...

does he have any proof of these allegations? or did he just quit when the going got tough? Give us Kimbrough you can have Archer now thats compromise. Time to call a another special meeting. Tick Tock

Anonymous said...

When we will we see an end to this debacle? Really, this is outrageous! This school board has GOT to get its act together and do the job that taxpayers and parents of kids in the district are expecting them to do, for Heaven's sake! I am sick of seeing all of the school board fistacuffs in the news and on this blog in newspaper & TV news stories! Honest to goodness, who do you, the school board, think you are helping with this nonsense? Certainly not the students of your district nor the parents of those students nor the taxpayers! Wake up and do your job, for crying out loud!!

Anonymous said...

Shorter 8:45 PM: "Why can't we all be friends?"

We can't because Huff is no friend of good education, and fixing the problems he's created, ultimately getting rid of him, cannot be anything but messy.

These sorts of complaints about style, now that the anti-Huff 3 are really getting to work thanks to their new majority, are ... curious.

Anonymous said...

It always gets messy before it gets better when you clean the garage!

Anonymous said...

What we're seeing here is a school board transitioning from strictly a rubber-stamp tool of the administration - which it has been for several years - into a deliberative, independent school board that handles tough issues relating to public education. Steele is a nice guy, but his departure is a good thing. I think the remaining board members, with the obvious exception of Landis, can all work together to select two more members and finally get to work at hand.

Jane Daniels said...

I feel that the school board needs to get out of the board room, and talk to the employees. Then you will have the information from everyone who is interested in R8 becoming great again.
I am not only a tax payer, I am also an employee. I also would like to see Jim Kimbrough on the board again. I have worked with him at the high school, and never caught Jim bending the truth. I trust him, he is familiar with what the high school needs, and could start working from the first, with not having to acclimate to the procedure. This way you have secondary and elementary (Dr. Forte) on the board with very useful experience.
I personally like Dr. Huff and wish him well in his future endeavors.
Now lets stop the squabble and get to work.

Anonymous said...

Once again this is ridiculous! The huff mentality is at work. Why doesn't he tell the real reason he had to resign!!!!

Julie Jett Watts said...

Whoa there.

I've known Randy for going on three decades now. His late wife Sherry was a good friend and co-worker of mine, was there when I had my first child, and I still have their daughter's baby clothes in my attic. Randy raised his daughter from her first day of kindergarten as a single, involved, safe, loving father. He later fostered two sons who consider him their dad, and has remained in their lives long after they have aged out of the system.

He supported the band for years after his own child graduated. He served as Board President, held down the same job for decades, and by all accounts has been a man of integrity, hard work, and conviction. I have never known him to lie. He can be a bit of a handful, but he knows that. I absolutely believe he was harassed and threatened, although I have no idea who'd be stupid enough to do that.

I also think he saw some things coming down. Scores are terrible, pressure is intense, the district is in grave debt, and there was this little GIANT TORNADO that caused utter mayhem and from which Joplin is still recovering. He no longer has children in the school system, he's given more than enough time and money to the district, and I think he was ready to leave two years ago but stayed because he felt it was the right thing to do. Clearly he no longer feels that way, and I hope JPD is investigating the harassment he and his family have dealt with over what comes down to a social one-up and political race.

I don't know Jeff Koch personally but I do know his wife and one of his daughters, and they are people of strong character and deep faith, morals and ethics. I don't believe he had any idea what he was getting into with this board and I feel for the guy. As for Huff, well, he's jumping before he got pushed.

I never thought it was right that you got fired, Mr. Turner. And I don't think it's right that Randy Steele should be harassed and his integrity questioned, either.

Anonymous said...

Julie Watts- Thank ou for your endorsement of Randy Steele. Its important in our world that someone comes to the defense of our fellow man- I truly believe that. At this time, you may be one of Steele's few supporters and thats a good thing. With that being said-
being a father of a daughter, why in the Hades would Randy allow the rant against Deb Fort? Whether or not he likes her as a person, how can it be okay that he didnt even take a firm stand and stop it? And being a parental figure to two sons, would he ever tell him that was ok? You see, my mom was a single mother and I KNEW it would be a butt whooping if she ever found out I ever participated in bullying or sat on the sidelines, watched it and did nothing.
Why would he like the post CJ Huff made against Jennifer Martucci? And he can say he didnt do it, but it was screen captured. How sad !!!!
And Randy Steele just ran for board last year, 2014, and if he was ready to to leave 2 years ago then he should have because he is part of the mess we are in now.

Just because someone has all of these so called attributes doesn't mean they make good choices all of the time. Doesnt mean they don't get sucked into the moment- even if its a moment that is terrible for others. Maybe he should take some ownership of his own lack of participation on the board.

Like I said- good for you supporting him.