Saturday, December 9, 2017

Be NICE: My Experiences With Diary of a Not So Wimpy Teacher




Black women. Tone. Education.  Repeat after me.  For the past few months, I have been a member of Facebook's Diary of a Not So Wimpy Teacher.  From my assessment, this is a predominantly White, conservative Facebook book created by Arizona resident, Jamie Sears.  Last night, I posted about an issue pertinent to K-12 education, and if those keys could TALK.  I was berated by White women.  One actually typed, "WTF."

SIgh.  

I have witnessed some wonderful posts in this forum; however, I have also read some that made me say, "There is no way in the hell could these women open the door for my children, let alone teach them."  I sense that this is a group of White females who want to be applauded for their efforts, and if someone questions their teaching, they have to g-o.

Yesterday, I remained professional, and I continued to play Devil's advocate. These members did not realize that I am a college professor, and therefore, I will look at things from all angles.  Fellow African American educators joined in the conversation, and they defended me.  Now, y'all know that our posts were reported.  One White female said that there were issues with my "tone."  

Silence.  

Yesterday, I contacted one of her administrators.  Now, y'all know that she has made it impossible for me to send her further messages.  

White women.  Fear of the black women.  White women.  Fear of strong, black women. We got tone.  We got attitude.  We just got BLACK.

This has reminded me of when I shared Dr. Manya Whitaker's article, "The Mammy in the Classroom" with my former colleagues.  I want to know why it is okay for White, female educators to curse out African American female teachers, yet when a black woman defends herself, she is removed from a group?  My concern is that these educators are teaching children of color. 


I brought this to the attention of the Wimpy's creator, Jamie Sears.  Indeed, she has read my remarks on Facebook.  I receive notification of that.  Yet, have I received a response?

I received a screenshot where members were told to read the group's rules and type "nice" after doing so.  

American educators, 2017.  

3 +3 equals what?  What number do we need to carry?

Per my assessment, Mrs. Sears is not prepared to engage in discourse regarding why she removed me, yet she has kept each and every member who disrespected me in the thread.  Members have privately messaged and informed me, "You did nothing wrong."  I sent Mrs. Sears an email, and I provided my phone number.  

Did I receive a response? Of course, I did not.  You simply have a group of Caucasian females who do not appreciate that a black woman did not pat them on the back.  Per my assessment, the page's creator co-signed on this inappropriate behavior when she removed me.  

Intersectionality is imperative.  By my removal, Mrs. Spears failed to provide a forum where educators, from all ethnicities, could discuss an important topic.  Instead, she and her administrators created a thread today encouraging educators to "be nice."

Mrs. Sears, that is just so "nice" of you.   From my assessment, by removing me, you are fostering racism in education, and it sickens me that you have anything to do with educating children and mentoring teachers. I would encourage you to possibly take a graduate course, at ASU, pertaining to Multicultural Education.  Black teachers are out here supporting you on Teachers Pay Teachers, and this is how you treat African American educators.

America's educators and educational system in 2017. 

:Deep breath:



Monday, December 4, 2017

You Seem Like THAT Type of Girl: Black Girls, Hispanic Judgement, and How the "That Girl" Stereotype Affects African American Female K-12 Educators


Last week, I had a rather deep conversation with a 16 year old African American female high school student.  Although I am not teaching at a high school, I still try to mentor students who seek assistance.  For the purpose of this post, her name is Nicole.  Nicole reminded me of Janet Jackson's role in "Poetic Justice."  Nicole had box braids, and she wore large, gold hoop earrings. Based upon her appearance alone, Nicole informed me that her Hispanic peers perceived her as "Ghetto Girl."  For instance, some were brazen to say, "How many referrals have you received here?"  When she said none, they responded, "Really?  You seem like the type of girl who would have a lot."

Fellow Brown Brothers and Sisters, can't we just get along?  Yet, we must remember that no one wants to be African American unless it is beneficial.

Sigh.

Nicole encouraged me to share her experience on my blog. I informed her that she was going to have a long row to hoe, and simply take deep breaths along the way.

Her experience reminded me of a Desert Vista High School parent that I met during the 2012-2013 school year.  Her daughter was one of the most disrespectful students that I encountered on that campus.  I had to endure a parent-teacher conference with said parent, her "victim" daughter, and my former department chair, who the Karma bus is most definitely going to stop at her home soon. My first English department chair is a prime example of a woman who loves having the opportunity to mentor African American "bright" students; however, once she left the classroom, she was not too kind to black female educators. To be honest, Mrs. ______ was only giving to Caucasian female teachers between the ages of 23-35.  She picked a "type" for her department, and you had to worship her, or you were damned.  A former White male colleague said, "Cee, when Battle was attempting to fire me, I went to Mrs. _______ for help, and she was basically done with me. I got no support from her."  This man was a nervous wreck when he shared this information with me.  He is still so haunted by his DV experience that when Showtime contacted him, he declined the opportunity to be on television due to the backlash that would occur if he spoke against Anna Battle.  He had retired, but the scars associated with his bullying were still evident.

Currently, Mrs. ________ is an administrator for a TUHSD high school, and it literally sickens me that she has any role where she is allegedly mentoring staff.   From "my perspective" (Kevin, how you doin'?), she will mentor any teacher out of the door that does not jump on her "Stepford Wife" train.  I figured out Mrs. _______ by the end of my first semester at DV.  I can still smell the stench of her cheap perfume. Some people you simply never forget.  Last year, I saw her at a local grocery store, and when she saw me, she dropped her head and nervously attempted to place things in her cart.

Guilt.

During the parent-teacher conference, said parent, who is affiliated with a large, K-8 school district said, "I would appreciate if you do not discuss college applications with my daughter.  That is a conversation that we will have as a family."

I was flabbergasted.  Then, I remembered that I was simply a "dumb" black woman who had no place telling a blonde-haired, blue-eyed White girl about her future.

I'm not that "type" of girl who would be knowledgeable about anything.

Sigh.


Sunday, November 19, 2017

Showtime's Dark Net: Six Months Later. . .



Six months ago, my episode of "Dark Net" aired. I am a Cyberbully victim, SURVIVOR, and activist.  This is what has transpired since the May 2017 airing:

* I have grown to love and appreciate Nick and Quentin more. Those young men stood up for me and told the nation how TUHSD treated me. 
* Karma is indeed something else. There has been such a shakeup at TUHSD.  Anna Battle, from one black woman to another,  "Girlfriend," (as you called me), you should have been awarded the Supt. position. You did everything that those people asked you to do, and then some.  It was time for an African American Supt.  Please do not believe what Dee Dee said that they wanted someone who had experience outside of the District.  You do recall the Supt. prior to Dr. Baca.  Didn't he only have TUHSD experience?  As my Mom says all the time, "White folk will make a way for who they want, regardless of what they tell the press that they desire."  You would have been the Supt. of TUHSD if you had not cost them so much money with your FIFTY AND ELEVENTY lawsuits AND my episode of "Dark Net."  There is no way that they were going to award you this prestigious position when you have probably cost them a significant amount of money over the past 30 years.  From my "perspective" (Kevin, thank you so much for that phrase), your excessive bullying and vengeance cost you that position.  Oh, and your "community" that loved you so much?  Why did they fail to protest your failure to receive the position?  Here is why - they do not need you anymore. You served your purpose, and they have moved on.  Moved. on.  
* I allowed the Lord to FINALLY fight this battle for me.  Wait on the Lord, and He will renew your strength.  
* Kevin, I still do not believe that you will work one day as TUHSD's Supt.  If that day comes to fruition, then the Prince of Zamunda will be asking me to marry him. 
* Kevin, Kenneth, AND Greg Wyman, your time is coming.  Anna has issues, but do you think that she is going to allow y'all to use her as a scapegoat without a price? Ha. You are three men who, from my perspective, allowed these White, Ahwatukee racists to cyberstalk and bully me.  Greg, it is time to also mention you.  You were the Asst. Supt. of Operations, and you were fully aware of my Desert Vista assault, yet what was your response? Kevin, although you are childless, you have nieces and nephews.  I saw the photos in your office.  How would you feel if someone cyberbullied them?  Kenneth, how would you feel if someone stalked your daughter or son?
* Black female parents are reaching out to me and asking for assistance with their sons who are being bullied by TUHSD students/other AZ school districts. 
Kevin, what in the world is allegedly going on in your schools?   I said, "How in the world did you find me?" One woman said, "Everyone knows about your struggle." Another AZ African American parent contacted me due to her child being bullied.  She said, "I googled to see who else has struggled with bullying while being black in AZ, and your name appeared." 
* I am thankful for my parents.
* I need for Oprah to contact me now and make a reality show based upon educators and their experiences. My TUHSD experience is not over yet.  The Lord has told me that.  Now, TUHSD thought that I was crazy about my "visions."  Everything that I told y'all has come to fruition.  Take HEED.

* Readers, I would like to thank you for following me.  God bless.


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Nic Stone's Dear Martin, Tempe Union High School District, and Self Hatred: Jesus, Don't Take the Wheel. Take the Entire Car.







This weekend, I read Nic Stone’s Dear Martin.  I found myself, underneath my comforter, reading her novel at 3 AM.  I could not put it down.  I will not ruin the book for you by giving you a synopsis. Instead, I would encourage you to spend the $10.99 and have it downloaded to your Kindle.   Justyne.  S.J., Manny, and Doc. 

Sigh.

The Black Man Curse is real, and I will devote the remainder of my post discussing how I was “Doc” at Desert Vista High School.  Many students shared with me their issues, with race, at DV. Contrary to what Dr. Anna Battle says, there were profound racial issues at Desert Vista High School.  From “my perspective,” Anna Battle ruined her reputation by suggesting that DV did not have racial issues when the T-shirt issue occurred.  Anna, “girlfriend,” (as you used to say to me), the worst thing that you could have done was defend those racist girls for the shirt incident.  Sweet Lord, Dr. Baca showed more anger than you did during the press conference. 

Self-hatred.  Sigh.

 Dr. Kevin Mendivil can continue to be delusional and say, “Dr. Cobb, from your perspective. . .” all that he desires.  My response, “Kevin, have 50 seats, please.  TUHSD would not be a “hot mess” if you had actually taken your Human Resources position seriously. “

There were two groups of African American students at DV – those born and raised in Ahwatukee and those from other parts of Phoenix/transfer students from another state. Indeed, the contrast was obvious.  DVHS’s  black students?  Lawd, where do I even begin?  They typically had African American parents who felt as if they made it.  I compare them to Lawrence Otis Graham and his black elite saga. By this, I suggest that a plethora of black Ahwatukee parents subscribe to the post racial society viewpoint.  In fact, I worked with one back in 2012.  For the purpose of this post, her name is Michelle.  Prior to DV, I worked with an Ahwatukee resident who,  despite wearing long dreadlocks and being a fan of African American literature, Michelle drank the post racial society Kool Aid, and I sat back and watched her write up a fellow colleague for being “ghetto” and allegedly rolling her neck during meetings.  This did not occur, but Michelle was similar to my former TUHSD supervisor, and she thrived off of, from “my perspective,”  keeping her foot on black women’s necks.  Michelle was raising her son in the same manner as Manny’s parents in Dear Martin.  It’s good for my baby to have White friends.  He can’t “pass,” but White folks have embraced him.

Sigh.

The novel reminded me of one student, whom I truly know that it will take a powerful force for him to make it.  For the purpose of this post, his name is Michael. In 2013, Michael was a Senior in my English course, and he was definitely lost.  Oh he thought that his fair complexion welcomed him into the “White world, “ but it did not.  Michael was caught saying “nigger” in my classroom, and I suggested that he read Richard Wright’s Native Son.  Of course, DV’s former principal twisted the matter to make it appear as if I was punishing Michael, and I was reprimanded for this.

Self-hatred is real. 

I taught my share of Blakes, Mannys, and Justyces.  It pained me to see black male and female students shrug off racist comments in order to be “cool.”  That brings me to “Benjamin.”  Benjamin is the young man who knows that a white racist said, “Benjamin take out your driver’s license.  We can only see your teeth since you are so black.”  My former co-teacher, a Hispanic male, was the ultimate Senor Pocho who did nothing to alleviate the racial tension found at Desert Vista.  It sickens me that he continues to receive awards.  From my viewpoint, he fostered the racism found on campus, and a former African American student informed me how he openly laughed at me when a student made some remarks about me in class.  Yet, this teacher is applauded; however, if you gave tests with question as easy as “What holiday do we celebrate on the 4th of July,” you would be commended as well, if you needed an “A” in a History class.

Sigh.

Benjamin should have been like Justyce and punched the racist in his mouth, but of course, he did not, because it was more important for him to love the White folk in his Junior class - - -the same ones who elevated him and made him the “token black” during the 2013-14 academic year and remain in their good graces.

Benjamin, you sold out a black teacher.  Have your former classmates remained in touch with you?  I seriously doubt it. 

Sigh.

The “Docs” make a serious sacrifice trying to mentor African American children who attend predominately White schools.  For many, it costs them their position, because you have those self-loathing administrators who swear that their campus does not have any racial issues.


Anna Battle, 3 +3 equals what?

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

There's A Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On: TUHSD's Executive Team And Their Desire to Leave The Nest






Some days, I feel like “Westie” from Westie Connect (http://westieconnect.com/).  Westie has been exposing Gilbert Unified since her close acquaintance was wrongfully terminated from the Gilbert Unified School District.  Be sure to check Westie's page out.  

LAWD.

Last night, I ran into a former Tempe Union High School District (TUHSD) colleague.  For the purpose of this post, her name is Mrs. McGee.  I had not seen her in at least a year.  We embraced and I said, "Did you watch my episode on Showtime?"  She said that she had not due to not having Showtime, and I explained to her about how she can still watch it online.  I also mentioned my guest appearance on "The Roland Martin Show."  Now, I can always tell when people drank the "Maybe Dr. Cobb is crazy" Kool Aid, which from  "my perspective" (Kevin Mendivil's favorite two words), was created and routinely stirred by TUHSD and the Ahwatukee community.  Therefore, when I shared with her my Roland experience, her expression completely changed, and that is when I had genuinely captured her attention.  Mrs. McGee said, “Did you hear that Battle was not promoted?”  I responded that I nearly got on my hands and knees and praised God.  Her husband laughed hysterically.  I take my faith seriously, and I have to agree with my Dad – maybe God allowed me to get hired at DV in order to expose TUHSD at an international level.

Indeed, Jesus is a balm in Gilead.


We also addressed how some TUHSD principals were allegedly happy that Mendivil was promoted, because if he had not received the position, they feared that they would lose their job.

Sigh.  Truly, I am waiting for the day that I find out that all of these bullied, certified TUHSD teachers have filed a class action lawsuit against the District for workplace discrimination, ADA discrimination, and retaliation.  I do not know what is taking the District’s insurance company and Larry Ward so long to “drop” their “liabilities.”  Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been paid to lawyers and former TUHSD employees due to improper workplace behavior.  Yet, some of us are told that our complaints are “frivolous.”

What’s that mathematical equation again?  3+3 =?  Carry what number?

Here is my math equation:  James Goggin + Sally Alvarez + Cicely Cobb + those whose Complaints are currently being written by their Counsel = $$$$$$$$$ that TUHSD has spent on court cases.

We discussed Sally Alvarez’s lawsuit (Alvarez v Tempe Union High School District, Anna Battle, and Kevin Mendivil), and that conversation led to me being asked the following question:  Did you know that Drs. Baca and Mendivil also allegedly applied for the Gilbert Unified Superintendent position, and only Dr. Battle was selected as a finalist?


Something has been off with this trio since July 2017 when Baca announced that he was resigning in 2018. I knew that something was up, but I could not pinpoint it.  Battle has been for applying for jobs, outside of TUHSD, since March 2017, when she was a finalist for the AIA position, and per Mrs. McGhee,  Mendivil allegedly threw his hat in the ring for the Gilbert Unified position. 

One friend often says, “Cicely, you find out everything.  It’s as if you just step outside and information falls into your lap.” 

She’s right, and just like I found out about Alvarez v Tempe Union et al, I will definitely find out all about this “shakin’”.

Larry Ward, it's time to start canceling insurance policies. . . 




Monday, October 23, 2017

"She and Her Mom are Ugly:": Teachers and Disabled Students in K12 Education


Yesterday, I came across an article, and I said, "Now, it is time to definitely share the tea that I've refused to "pour" for the past five years."  Allegedly, five Amarillo, TX teachers were accused of speaking in a negative manner about their disabled students while eating dinner at Joe Taco.  Another patron recorded the video.  The teachers, who are now "victims," have retained a lawyer, and they have been placed on administrative leave.  You can read the article at:

http://m.kltv.com/kltv/db_383269/contentdetail.htm?full=true&contentguid=reJWTOT0&pn=&ps=#display

During my first week at Desert Vista High School, teachers were encouraged to join each other at Bleacher's, a local Ahwatukee bar, for a "Back to School" bash.  My major rule is to not to drink in front of my colleagues. Therefore, I was "good and sober" as I listened to the conversations about topics that ranged from summer vacations to students.  After this incident, I also created another rule - never leave your belongings in someone's car in case you need to leave.  I rode to the restaurant with an administrator and teacher.  By the end of the evening, I knew to treat both of them with a long-handled spoon.

As the evening progressed, one of the conversations that emerged involved an African American disabled student and her mother.   The administrator proceeded to use profanity and gestures to mock both individuals. Another administrator, who places the letter "W" in weak, sat back and laughed as well.  The ringleader said, "Oh, I think that I am too much for Dr. Cobb." The teacher laughed, but in retrospect, I am not surprised.  The woman, who I will call, Mrs. Angle, truly knew how to work angles, especially every angle in her mouth to spread gossip.  Both women were protected by their supervisor, and sadly, the supervisor had no idea how one evening, Angle demeaned her, while on the phone with me, about her parenting skills as well as issues that were private pertaining to said administrator's children.  I said, "If she talks about her BFF's children in this manner, I can only imagine what she says about other DV students."

Months later,  during my Spring evaluation, I reported the Bleacher incident and of course, I was told that it would be investigated.  The response that I received months after the fact (in a nasty tone), "That person said that the comments were never made."

I guess that I was lying, did not witness the other administrator laughing, as well as the teacher who rode with me to the event.  I am a liar just like Sally Alvarez, James Goggin, Beth Koester, and the list is growing.

I am still trying to find out the entire story involving Mrs. Koester.  It was more than her trying to merely retire.  I am fully aware that a settlement was reached, and she is not allowed to discuss the issues that led to her paid administrative lead.  A former student, who I previously tutored, informed me about the fake Facebook accounts, her harassment, etc.. . .   I have also heard about her evaluations, bullying, etc. . ..

Sigh. Arizona taxpayers.  Arizona taxpayers.

Last May,  I ran into a former colleague.  For the purpose of this post, his name is Mr. Smith.  Smith  informed me that this "educator" had received a large promotion, and had been transferred to another TUHSD high school.  Mr. Smith said, "____________ has no business running any school."  I responded, " ______________ shouldn't even be allowed to play with a Fisher Price School House full of Weebles.  Please allow me to tell you about the 2012 Bleachers incident. . . "

Delores and Otis were extremely protective of my brother and me, especially when it came to who influenced us. That is really difficult to do at a school.  Blindly, parents believe that educators and administrators have their children's best interest at heart.  Sadly, a significant number of them do not, and the population that parents need to especially protect are children who suffer from disabilities.  Please be sure to closely monitor the teachers' verbal and nonverbal communication with your children.  And, in this case, be sure to pay close attention to the school's administrators and their views towards the disabled.

GO PRIDE!


Monday, October 16, 2017

S Is For Side Eye: Alvarez v Tempe Union High School District, Anna Battle, and Kevin Mendivil (2017)








Last Friday, while brainstorming ideas for blog posts, I came across Alvarez v Tempe Union High School District, Anna Battle, and Kevin Mendivil (2017).   Immediately, I said, "Lord, please tell me that these two are not embroiled in another lawsuit."

When you allow God to fight your battles. . .

Readers, y'all know my history with Drs. Battle and Mendivil.  In fact, ever since TUHSD shocked everyone and selected Kevin Mendivil as the new TUHSD Supt., my phone has rang nonstop.  Granted, Mendivil is the lesser of the two evils, I am not elated that he was selected for this position.  Dr. Mendivil knew what many certified/classified employees have endured, but from "my perspective," - Kevin's favorite phrase when speaking with me, he sat back and allowed us to be annihilated by a workplace bully.

Man UP, Kevin.  Man. UP.   Dr. Baca, I now understand why you have elected to leave TUHSD.  How many lawsuits have been filed since you became Supt.?

Sigh.

In my Riley Curry voice, "Wellllllllll."  Mendivil has found himself in his second lawsuit within a three year period.  What is concerning is that this Co-Defendant has been selected as the Supt. of TUHSD. I want to know how is it possible that a  Associate Supt. of Human Resources has been named in two lawsuits, since 2017, and he was recently appointed the Supt. of TUHSD.

3+3 equals what?  What number do we carry?

Both of these individuals should not even be allowed to draw a photo of a schoolhouse on a sheet of paper. In fact, when they see a school bus, on the road, they should pull over and treat that bus as if it was an ambulance.

Some Arizonians, especially Ahwatukee residents have found it difficult to believe that TUHSD could actually condone workplace bullying,  I want y'all to read Ms. Sally Alvarez's Complaint.  Alvarez, like James Goggin and myself has a disability, and per the Complaint, she received less than stellar marks on her evaluation - - - the one that was conducted shortly after she returned from FMLA.  Although she had previously received good evaluations, *surprisingly* she was now deemed as incompetent and encouraged to resign, or face termination.

The TUHSD playbook is the same.  Maybe Mendivil will update it once he takes the helm in July, 2018.   These Complaints all read the same - teacher either is a whistle blower or asked for an ADA accommodation, and suddenly,  the employee is an ineffective instructor, director of transportation, coach, etc. .

S is for side eye.

Both Mendivil and Battle need to remain in TUHSD, because with these two lawsuits, I do not know how they think that another school district will hire them.  These lawsuits are worse than any PIP that they placed TUHSD teachers on prior to termination. What's the favorite phrase that my colleagues and I heard - "Kevin and Anna, I am noticing a pattern here. We have all of these individuals filing lawsuits and naming you as Co-Defendants.  Do you mean to tell me that each of them has lied? What would they possibly gain from lying about you?"

Let me stopping giving y'all the side-eye before my contact lenses get stuck in the corners of my eyes.

I encourage y'all both to read Exodus 14:14; Psalm: 27:14 ;  and Philippians 4: 19.

It utterly disgusts me that the State of Arizona has to continue to pay for these lawsuits.  We have TUHSD children whose parents are scraping cash together in order to pay their children's $1900 cheer leading dues.

You read correctly.  $1900.  Yet, TUHSD can continue to hire high-power law firms to fight lawsuits that should have never come into fruition.

If I had the energy, I would attend law school and become the Gloria Allred prototype needed to crush TUHSD.

Ms. Alvarez, I wish you the best.  I am praying that you have a strong, support system, because you are going to need it.  You will be called a liar, informed that you are crazy, and your so-called friends, who are still affiliated with TUHSD, may turn their back on you.  Remain ENCOURAGED.

Note: Alvarez's Complaint can be found on Pacer.  Please take the time to create an account and read it.