The KTBS story and report on theft of federal food funds as well as monetary mismanagement in the food services program has generated requests for school records and explanations from CPSB leadership, including Superintendent Goree. However, attorney for CPSB Reggie Abrams addressed the issue, according to one board member, by suggesting that NO future internal audits be released to the public.The 2013 audit notes significant issues (section of troubles in audit) that have never been properly addressed. Perhaps Abrams wants these to just “vanish.” [Complete 2012 &2013 audit here & here]
Abrams indicated that since these audits were internal in nature, the public has no right to view them. He further explained to board members, who cannot go on the record due to the policy that the board has to “speak with one voice,” that comments not vetted by the whole board only inflame the public, regardless of factual accuracy.
My question is why would Abrams expect any other reaction when all facts to date, including the video and story from KTBS, reflect mismanagement, poor judgement and outright theft from taxpayers. The fact that students, the reason CPSB really exists, seem to be an afterthought in all decisions from the central office board and administration.
If the Mission of CPSB is: “To improve the academic achievement of students and overall district effectiveness,” all actions we have seen since the KTBS story broke point to activities that the public should demand corrective action. The real “mission” seems to be code for “job security system!”
Attorney for the board, Abrams, appears to violate any sense of respecting transparency in the system citizens should expect to be a model for educating citizens and students alike in good government practices and proper business management.
Several board members contacted about the KTBS story brushed off criticism as “misinformation” and “you just don’t understand how it works.” My understanding is that I am getting a clearer picture of how it really works, and the attorney for the board seems to want to just hide facts that would make it clearer for taxpayers. He Really works on protecting his job, protecting the board from criticism and doing what it takes to keep any bad, but truthful, facts from public view. It’s just “Taking care of business!”
Walls are being built to make it harder to support and pass future bond issues to support education because the entrenched are determined to cover up any wrongdoings and protect those who are guilty of the wrongs. These are walls we must tear down to protect what is good in the educational system.
This is unfortunate for citizens and our students. The entrenched are setting Caddo Parish back into the class of criminally negligent who deserve detailed investigation. We may see low-level hand slaps, but the real wrong-doers near the top require corrective measures.