Now that we've reached the Spring of 2018, many public-school mandates funded by Obama and his RINO-led Congress are about to expire. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos needs to make some sharp cuts and serious reforms urgently.
A good example of why need reform desperately is the story of Charles McCormack of Muscle Shoals, Alabama. McCormack was sentenced to 10 years in prison today after being arrested by the FBI last Fall on multiple counts of Child Pornography violations. McCormack, incidentally was a Kindergarten teacher.
According to WAFF-48 TV, McCormack had been investigated at least three times since 2010 and it was proven by FBI agents that he'd engaged in such behavior at least since 1998. Most of his trafficking in pornography and paraphernalia involved girls around 4-7 years of age.
McCormack was employed by the Walker County (Georgia) Public Schools when the three complaints uncovered by WAFF occurred. In 2010, a parent complained that McCormack took pictures under their daughter's dress. In 2015, parents of another girl complained that McCormack had put his hands down their daughter's pants. In 2016, he was investigated again: it's unknown as to why but it involved the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. And according to Walker County Superintendent Damon Raines, McCormack retired (yes, as in with a pension) in 2016. He taught Kindergarten at Chattanooga Valley Elementary School.
People like McCormack are bad enough, but administrators like Raines who take no action---in fact hire them and protect them---are even worse.
Raines is no stranger to controversy himself. He and his District lost a Federal lawsuit when judges ruled that he had violated a teacher's Right to Free Speech when Raines tried to put a gag-order on him for publicly criticizing a new grading-policy. The new 'progressive' grading-policy, incidentally, prohibited teachers from giving grades on homework and day-to-day assignments and only allowed grades to be given on test scores.
Raines also came under fire more recently for pressuring teachers to lobby and speak against school-choice initiatives. Which sounds like something that parents in his school district desperately need. Raines draws down a fat salary of nearly $140,000 annually; compared to the $38,000 median annual salary in Walker County.
Walker County wasn't the only culpable school district here. WAFF reported that, in spite of McCormack's history and the fact that he was now under investigation by the FBI, the Muscle Shoals School District hired him as a substitute teacher for its elementary schools.
Their Superintendent, Brian Lindsey, said that his district doesn't keep records on substitutes and that he has no idea whether McCormack taught there or not. What Lindsey actually does do to justify his $136,000 salary is not known. But Lindsey must travel a lot, because his contract gives him an additional $6,000 'car allowance' annually. The median income in Muscle Shoals is a little less than $27,000 per year. Crime in Muscle Shoals is 34% higher than the rest of Alabama and almost double the national average.
Lindsey is notable for the kinds of lowlifes who work under him. In 2015, he temporarily suspended a football coach after the coach was jailed for beating up his wife and breaking her nose. In 2016, their athletic department was sanctioned for trying to bribe athletes from other schools to transfer. Also in 2016, the school district was forced to repay the State of Alabama $118,000 after a 'computer error' awarded them tax dollars to which they were not entitled.
Lindsey also lobbied for a local property tax increase 'for the schools'; which drew much criticism since he lives outside of town and wouldn't have to pay the increase himself.
Academic Mandarins like Damon Raines and Brian Lindsey are what feeds the corrupt environment which attracts perverts like McCormack (and other criminals). They are examples of why our public schools need to be reformed from top-to-bottom. Or failing that, simply abolished and begun again from scratch.