The Georgia Citizen

Keeping Georgians Informed.

Collins Still Has Big Lead in Hunch Polling’s Facebook Poll

Congressman Doug Collins has a big lead in Hunch Polling’s latest Facebook Poll. Collins is “again throttling Senator Kelly Loeffler in our 3rd Facebook poll,” says Dr. John Rhodes. “We simply asked the Facebook participants the following: ‘If the election were held today, would you vote for Kelly Loeffler or Doug Collins for U. S. Senator?'”

The subjects of the poll were around 5,000 Facebook readers, most of whom are Republicans. But, all can particpate, Democrats and Independents alike. The base is a large cross section of Republicans. Dr. Rhodes states that “many comments are made for both Collins and Loeffler, and it appears that at least 65% of the participants are supporting Doug Collins.”

Senator Loeffler has definitely climbed in the minds of Georgians. She was embarrassingly trounced in the first two of Hunch Polling’s Facebook polls, garnering only about 20% of the votes. But, throwing about $15 million on television and radio ads have moved the needle.

Hunch Polling has Collins and Loeffler finishing #1 and #2 in this jungle primary, but a Democrat could slip into the #2 position. This race is the race to fill Johnny Isakson’s unexpired term.

Experience Is The Difference In The Wild & Woolly GOP Primary In Georgia’s 7th Congressional District!

Yes, it appears that legislative experience will be the difference in Georgia’s GOP Primary in the wild and woolly 7th Congressional District.  This district has brought national headlines ever since Democrat Carolyn Bordeaux came within a little over 400 votes of defeating long-term Republican Congressman Rob Woodall in 2018.  Traditionally, Georgia’s 7th Congressional District located in Atlanta’s bedroom community of Gwinnett and Forsyth Counties has been considered a safe Republican district.  But, the sprawling county of Gwinnett has seen much demographic change in recent years.  Gwinnett County is now a majority-minority county.  With Woodall retiring from Congress, this race has attracted many candidates, including Ms. Bordeaux in the Democratic Primary.

There are a host of candidates vying for the Republican nomination.  But, it appears that at this juncture that two candidates, State Senator Renee Unterman and political newcomer Rich McCormick, are drawing the most attention.  Within the past week, an anonymous and rather scandalous mailing was sent to voters with Renee Unterman’s photo at the top with the headline, “Why the Bimbo?”  Apparently, this mailing has backfired on the sender(s) because many voters were offended by such uncouthness of the mailing.  Unterman says that such treatment of conservative females makes her even more determined to fight the good fight.   Also, one of the lesser known candidates sent out a video calling McCormick “Phony Rich.”  McCormick appears to hail from “parts unknown,” to use some pro wrestling parlance.  Some are calling him the “Mystery Man.”

Unterman was born and raised in Gwinnett County.  She graduated from Georgia State University with a nursing degree.  She worked for years as a Registered Nurse.  She is closely aligned with the nurses of Georgia.  She later earned a graduate degree from the University of Georgia.  She served as Mayor of Loganville, Gwinnett County Commissioner, several years in the State House, and has served the last 18 years in the State Senate of Georgia where she has championed many conservative causes such as the Heartbeat Bill which she authored.  This bill has been the most pro-life bill offered up in the Georgia legislature.  Senator Unterman has made the fight against human trafficking one of her more ardent causes.  She voted for the largest income tax cut in Georgia history and voted for “stand your ground” legislation to defend Georgians’ Second Amendment rights.  Senator Unterman has been an active Republican for more than three decades, attending many state and national GOP conventions.  Yesterday, former Georgia governor Nathan Deal publicly endorsed Senator Unterman for Congress.  Georgia’s Lieutenant Governor Geoff Duncan, all the Republican mayors in Gwinnett County, the Gwinnett County Commission Chairman, the Gwinnett County District Attorney, and the Gwinnett County Sheriff have all endorsed Senator Unterman for Congress.  The Senator is married and is the mother of two children.

McCormick is a newcomer to this part of Georgian, now living with his wife and children in Suwannee.  He was born and raised in Portland, Oregon.  He graduated from Oregon State University.  He later earned a MBA from National University, a school located out of San Diego, California and a leader in online education.  McCormick spent more than 20 years in the Marine Corps and Navy and was a Marine helicopter pilot, spending time in Africa, the Persian Gulf, and Afghanistan.  He apparently first moved to Georgia when attending the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta.  Recently, Dr. McCormick has been drawing attention for the political commercials that he is running on FOX News, claiming to be a Republican conservative and a strong supporter of President Trump.  But, Dr. McCormick has come under fire from his opponents who state that McCormick was not that supportive of Trump since he did not vote in the GOP Presidential Primary nor in the General Election in 2016.  Also, there appears to be no evidence that McCormick has ever voted in any Republican Primary in Georgia which is the traditional place where a person can show his or her GOP bona fides.  McCormick has been endorsed by one-term congressman Allen West and also by the Medical Association of Georgia.  Dr. McCormick is married and has seven children.

The crowded GOP field will more than likely cause this race to go to a run-off election.  The run-off will probably be between Senator Unterman and Dr. McCormick.  The real difference in this race does not seem to be issues.  Both candidates appear to be conservative on the issues and are pro-Trump.  The big difference is that one candidate has a Republican legislative record on the issues, and the other candidate does not even have a record of being a Republican.


Mike Lee, Carrollton Businessman and Community Activist, Sued in State Court of Carroll by Joshua B. Stanley

Earlier, The Georgia Citizen reported on a controversy which had been brewing in West Georgia wherein Haralson County resident, Joshua B. Stanley had alleged that Mike Lee, formerly of Douglas County but now a resident of Carrollton, Georgia in Carroll County, had lured him into loaning the businessman $20,000.00 with a promise of a $2,000.00 return on the investment.  According to the allegations as well as a law suit filed by Stanley against Lee in the State County of Carroll County, Mr. Lee was to take the loan and purchase a house — perhaps from those homes in foreclosure and owned by SunTrust Bank where Mr. Lee’s wife, Lisa Lee, was working.  After Mr. Lee renovated the house and sold it (which he did indeed sell), he was, according to Mr. Stanley, to pay back the #20,000.00 and also pay Mr. Stanley an additional $2,000.00 for return on Mr. Stanley’s investment.  According to the law suit, Mr. Lee has done neither.  Mr. Stanley, according to him, was left with a big fat goose egg, so to speak.
Mr. Stanley brought his suit against Mike Lee, who serves on the Board of Directors of West Georgia Technical College and is active in the Midway Baptist Church, Mrs. Lisa Lee, and against the SunTrust Bank.  We have learned that Mr. Stanley later dismissed the actions against the latter two, but the law suit for fraud and other factors against Mr. Mike Lee is still trudging forward through the State Court of Carroll County.
For more details about this controversy, see The Georgia Citizen’s article of April 5, 2016.

John Trotter’s Political Elixir can be Purchased from Amazon or from Big Daddy Publishers

Political Elixir image

“I finished Political Elixir today.  I loved it!  Very intriguing and informative with colorful characters.  Great writing!!” — Stefan Burkhalter.
`’This is a damn good novel.” — J. B. Stanley.
“I couldn’t put it down!” — Norreese Haynes.
“I promise you.  You will love it!  I loved it.” — Michael Vanyo.
“This novel is a page-turner!” — Sharlene Gipson.
“This masterpiece of story-telling is destined to be a number one political novel for any time period, location, or culture.  It ought to be in the library of anyone interested in politics and culture.” — James (Gunny) Yawn.

     Political Elixir is John Trotter’s poignant story of politics told within the textured fabric of the American South as woven by threads of race, sex, class, power, hate, love, hope, and redemption.  Trotter’s story is deftly crafted with the nuanced images which can only be created by a literary artist who has experienced such scenes up close.

This contemporary political novel is rooted in Jackson, Mississippi; Atlanta, Georgia; Salvador, Brazil; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Washington, D. C.  Southerners are uniquely concerned about roots – where you are from and where happenings took place.  Southerners are more place-bound than any other Americans.  Southerners want to know your background and who your parents are.  That is why this story is such a Southern story.

This is the story of how class, race, sex, hate, power, love, hope, and redemption are interwoven in life.  The backdrop of the story is two near octogenarian white men who are enormously wealthy and fathered two sons by two Negro maids who worked in their respective homes.  These two men, who were close friends since their glory days at Ole Miss University and the University of Georgia Law School, are scions of huge family wealth.  One knew from the beginning that he had sired “a little colored boy.”  The other found out very suddenly many years later.  Both men have big dreams for their mixed-race sons, their African American sons.

This is the story of how all of their lives intersected and formed a powerful bond.  A story of redemption, born of mistrust and doubt.  The near aborted relationships remained intact, though sometimes dangling by the proverbial threads.  The bonds of family prevail.

Johnny Rhodes, Unlikely Hero. We Remember Him.

by John Rhodes Alston Trotter, EdD, JD

Johnny Rhodes, my Daddy’s best friend while growing up in the East Highland/St. Elmo area of Columbus and all the way through high school (J. V. H. S., of course), died in the Battle of the Bulge in January of 1945.  This was the last great Nazi offensive, repelled by, I think, the U. S. Third Army under General George Patton.  Johnny Rhodes was quite a character, and I have his portrait in the Daniel D. Trotter Conference Room beside my father’s portrait at the MACE Office.  He rode a motorcycle up and down the halls of Jordan High.  He wore his leather boots and his leather jacket (he had these on in the J Club photo that I also have in my office).  (The J Club was the lettermen’s club.)  My mother says that the girls loved Johnny Rhodes!  He was like their Fonz at Jordan High!  But, of all of my father’s close friends, the United States military would not accept Johnny until he had a hernia operation.

DDT Conference Room 2

Private John A. Rhodes is the young man in the U. S. Army uniform above my forehead in the photo above.  My father, Daniel D. Trotter, Sr., was in the U. S. Navy during World War II.  A Japanese kamikaze plane crashed into my father’s ship, killing most of the sailors.  My father survived but his very best friend died in the Battle of the Bulge.

Johnny Rhodes had the surgery and was accepted into the U. S. Army.  He stayed in the brig quite a bit at Fort Benning, however.  He liked to go AWOL a lot!  He would show up at my Mother’s house on Lawyer’s Lane in Columbus, wanting my grandmother to fix him a breakfast.  She did.  She too loved Johnny Rhodes!  Johnny would kid my mother by saying:  “Trotter’s going to get killed and I’m gonna come home and marry you!”  Of all of my father’s very close friends at Jordan High, only Johnny did not come home.  Daddy told me that one of their mutual friends says that he saw Johnny get off the ship in Belgium in handcuffs.  I presume that he went straight from the brig at Fort Benning to the European theatre of the war.  He was killed fighting the Nazi surge in January of 1945.  His remains are in the Park Hill Cemetery in Columbus.  The flag that was draped over his coffin is with me, as well as his Bible given to him by his mother in 1934.  I also have his $25 War Bonds certificate (composed of 25 cents stamps).  His grandparents (who raised him) sent them to my parents when I was born and was named after him.

Miss Green, who taught at Jordan High for probably over 40 years (she was there when my father was a student and when I was a student) almost never forgave my father for naming me after his best buddy, Johnny Rhodes.  Johnny kept up so much mess in her English class.  Daddy ended up teaching/coaching and being assistant principal at Jordan in the 1950s and 1960s.  My mother says that she doesn’t think that Johnny ever got out of Freshman English, but he sure did entertain the girls in the class.  Miss Green would take him out into the halls, and when they came back into the room, he would be dusting off his hands, as if to say, “I took care of Miss Green.”

Johnny Rhodes, unlikely hero.  We remember him.  Rest in peace.






Another Superintendent Clown? Indeed, What in the Heck is Going on in Rockdale County?

From reading different posts on the internet, it appears that Superintendent Richard Autry has stepped into some deep do do in his short tenure in Rockdale County.  Since when are teachers found “guilty” when they are assaulted and attacked by a student(s)?  We hear that the teacher was even hurt.  Yet, the school system wants the teacher to accept a five-day suspension in this matter.  Animal Farm?  The prisoners are now running the prisons, heh?  Perhaps school systems and school boards should take the sage advice of former Clayton County Board of Education member, Norreese Haynes.  He consistently called for the removal of the “thugs” from the Clayton County School System.  His famous quote was and is, “Order is the first law of the Universe.”  Mr. Richard Autry, Rockdale County schools need more order.  And, quite frankly, the teacher needs an apology…from you, sir.

superintendent clown

Will Rockdale County’s Richard Autry nominated to the Superintendent Clowns of America?

For more reading on this story, follow the link below.

Hey Superintendent Richard Autry, What in the Hell is Going Out in Rockdale County?

West Georgia Businessman, Mike Lee, Has Been Focus of Several Recent Pickets

West Georgia Businessman, Mike Lee, Has Been Focus of Several Recent Pickets

Mike Lee, a Carrollton resident who principally conducts his storage business and house-flipping business in Douglasville, has been the subject and focus of several recent pickets in Douglasville and Carrollton. Mr. Lee was also taken to Magistrate Court in Carrollton by J. B. Stanley who contends that Mike Lee stiffed him of a return on his investment in Lee’s real estate transaction. “I invested $20,000.00 in one of Mr. Lee’s real estate transactions in February of 2015. I wired the money to his attorney. Our explicit agreement was that when Mr. Lee sold the house that he was flipping after renovations that I would get my $20,000.00 back plus a two thousand dollar return on my investment,” Stanley contends. Apparently Lee sold the house in July, and Stanley apparently got back neither his original investment nor the ten percent return on the investment. Eventually, Stanley took Lee to court on “theft by conversion,” and the very public pickets began.

Mike Lee2

Mr. Lee apparently is active in Midway Baptist Church in Carroll County and serves on the West Georgia Technical College Board of Directors. Two of the pickets were staged in front of the corporate office of West Georgia Technical College on the town square in Carrollton. This got the attention of the West Georgia Tech administrators, including President Steve Daniel. The administrators were urging the picketers to try to resolve the matters privately. One of the picket signs called upon Midway Baptist Church and West Georgia Technical College to “help” with the money. A red picket sign stated, “Seeing Red Over $22,000.00!” Mr. Stanley’s pink sign read, “Give Me Back My Money!” A yellow sign asked, “Mike Lee, Where’s the Money?” A green sign bluntly stated, “Mike Lee, Give Back the Money!”

Mike Lee3

Mr. Lee and his wife are apparently active in the Carrollton High School Cheerleaders Booster Club where their daughter is a cheerleader and was the football homecoming queen.

Mike Lee4

Mr. Stanley stated to The Georgia Citizen that the Magistrate Court Judge asked both parties to attend mediation. Mr. Stanley stated that after the mediation and the second picket that Mr. Lee offered to pay $15,000.00. “I refused that amount because I want all of my money back.” Asked if there will be any more pickets, Mr. Stanley stated, “Definitely. One is planned for the Carrollton High School graduation. Trust me. This won’t be a Trojan Horse,” he stated in obvious reference to the Carrollton High School mascot.

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Mike Lee16

Mr. Stanley states that Mr. Lee has acknowledged to him and his attorney that he owes the money. “How does this man think that he can just cheat someone out of $22,000.00 and get by with it?” Stanley rhetorically asked.

Mike Lee22

The Georgia Citizen attempted to contract Mr. Lee at his place of business in Douglas County, but he was not available for comment. His secretary stated that Mr. Lee would be out of town until next week. Should Mr. Lee want to comment on whether or not he pilfered $22,000.00, The Georgia Citizen will certainly provide him space to do so.

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Mike Lee1

It’s Official! Vickie Warren of Murray County, William A. Hunter of Polk County, Randy Rodgers of Montgomery County, and Mychele Rhodes of McDuffie County are the Latest Georgia School Superintendents Inducted into the Superintendent Clowns of America!

superintendent clown

 Damn Good Clown!

1. Crawford Lewis (formerly of DeKalb County, Georgia but now criminally indicted).  Crawford Lewis‘s trial is coming up very soon.  Among other felonious charges, Mr. Lewis is facing RICO charges.  Oh, did we mention that the Crawford Lewis Administration tried to ban Dr. John Trotter of MACE from the DeKalb County premises?  It all stared when Ronald (RonRamsey (a State Senator, no less!) shut down a grievance of a teacher who was being represented by Dr. Trotter when it appeared that much discussion and evidence about “systematic cheating” was about to emerge in the hearing.  Now you that Dr. Trotter was not going to take this sitting down!  [Crawford Lewis was indicted and awaits trial.]

2. Edmond Heatley (the beleaguered superintendent of Clayton County, Georgia).  Believe it or not, this superintendent clown is actually about to be offered a job by the Berkeley United School District in California.  The people of Clayton County are jumping for joy to be getting rid of this clown!  The Gypsy nature of these “national” superintendents only point to the depths that public education in the U. S. has sunk.  Stay turned for a forthcoming book from Dr. John Trotter and Norreese Haynes entitled The MACE Manifesto:  A Declaration of What is Really Wrong With Public Education wherein they discuss what they call “educational sluts” — those superintendents who just jump from one school board bed to the next, depending on what they are paid.  [Edmond Heatley abruptly resigned his job in Clayton County, GA apparently thinking that he was going to become the superintendent of Berkeley, CA.  But, Dr. Trotter was quoted frequently in the Berkeley and San Francisco newspapers.  He did not get the job.]

3. Jerry Bell (Hart County, Georgia).  Jerry Bell flubbed up royalty in trying to get rid of one of his good, experienced teachers in Hart County.  First of all, he gave the teacher insufficient notice in the charge letter.  In other word, Mr. Bell did not go by due process as outlined in the Georgia Statutory CodeDr. John Trotter with MACE outlined this to Mr. Bell, the school board members, the Hart County school board lawyers (Harben, Hartley and Hawkins), and to the media.  Mr. Bell, in his apparent stubbon way, continued to forge ahead.  His recommendation to non-renew the teachers contract was not upheld by a majority of the school board members, and the teacher still has a teaching job.  Vivian Morgan, the reporter with the Hartwell Sun newspaper, stated that Mrs. Tressa Blackwell‘s MACE attorney, Mr. Lowell Chatham, “was phenominal.”  [Jerry Bell, we understand, just secured a superintendent’s job in his home of Haralson County, GA.]

4. Romain Dallemand (Bibb County, Georgia). Romain Dallemand still sits atop the Bibb County Board of Education, but some new blood is coming on the school board in January.  New school board member and Macon attorney Jason Downey is bound to ask some pertinent questions of Dallemand.  The MACE Strike Force appeared downtown Macon on historic Mulberry Street in front of the Bibb County Courthouse to protest against Dallemand and his “Macon Nightmare.”  This picket was carried in the media, including extensive coverage on Macon’s NBC 41 television news.  With Edmond Heatley apparently headed back to California, Dallemand may be sitting with Hart County‘s Jerry Bell at the top of those superintendents in Georgia who are the most clownish in their roles as superintendents.  [MACE picketed Dallemand two times in downtown Macon and both pickets were televised on local TV.  He was forced out in Macon and sued the school board, but the suit was dismissed by the judge.]

5. Beverly Hall (the disgraced former superintendent of Atlanta City, Georgia).  What can we say about Beverly Hall?  According to the New York Times, she oversaw the greatest cheating scandal in the history of American schools.  But, what has happened to her?  Has her certificate been yanked…like the teachers’?  Has she faced any criminal or civil sanctions?  It does indeed seem like the big guys and gals seem to get off scot free, doesn’t it?  MACE never bought into Beverly Hall‘s snake oil showMACE fought her every step of the way!   [Beverly Hall was indicted but before she could stand trial, she succumbed to cancer.]

6. Luvenia Jackson, the interim superintendent of Clayton County Schools in Georgia was brought out of retirement.  She has been demonstrating lately that her administration does not understand the importance to go by the Georgia Law for Certified Employee Complaints (O. C. G. A. 20-2-989.5 et seq.).  Former superintendent Edmond Heatley wanted to routinely violate this law as well.  The MACE teachers union effectively took on Heatley for this and many other issues.  Both superintendents were perhaps looking for “advice” from education attorney, Glenn Brock.  One of MACE‘s picket signs yesterday stated, “Luvenia, Quit Listening to ‘Legal Pimps’ and Obey the Law!”  Apparently, Ms. Jackson had the top security personnel in the school system to come and try to remove the MACE picketers from the public forum.  We have a feeling that she (and others superintendents in Georgia) will be receiving a lesson on the First Amendment and Free Speech from MACE‘s Chairman of the Board, Dr. John Trotter.

7. Mychele Rhodes of McDuffie County (Georgia) School System.  See separate article about Ms. Rhodes on this site.

8. Vickie Reed of Murray County (Georgia) School System heads up one of, if not, the most dysfunctional school system in Georgia.  The horrors of this systems makes one recall the movie “Deliverance.”

9. Randy Rodgers of Montgomery County (Georgia) School System is a weak superintendent who, like Vicki Reed and Mychele Rhodes, seems to have no qualm suspending the Teacher of the Year, Brad Lord, because a coach on staff, the husband of the principal (nepotism, anyone?), apparently confronted this teacher because he and the principal/wife had strong disagreements in a meeting over the TKES evaluation.  So, what does Superintendent Randy Rodgers do?  He suspends Mr. Lord, who was apparently the one invited by the husband/coach to meet him in a local park at 3:45 that afternoon to settle the matter.  Rodgers, Reed, and Rhodes (3R) of Montgomery, Murray, and McDuffie (3M) just nonchalantly ignore the mandates of the Georgia Statutory Code (OCGA 20-2-940[g]) when it comes to suspending a teacher.

Randy Rodgers, Montgomery County

Montgomery County (GA) Superintendent, Randy Rodgers

10. William A. Hunter, erstwhile superintendent of Brantley and McIntosh Counties (we think forced out in both counties), but now of Polk County.  Trouble seems to have followed Mr. Hunter from McIntosh County when he arrived on the scene in Polk County.  This former Arkansas banker seems to have his detractors in Polk County, as we recently received this characterization of his administration in Polk County:

“Nepotism, favoritism, retaliation, bullying, no-bid contracts, hiring without posting jobs, fraternization, Apple/PSD conflict of interest, God knows what else. Not to mention that he was FIRED from his last two jobs. Mass exodus of good, long time teachers. Culture of fear and intimidation.”

We are sure that Mr. Hunter would say that he and the school boards “mutually agreed” to his resignations.  As in all cases, we welcome the comments of any of the superintendents highlighted on this blog.

Note:  The above article first appeared in 

Comments on this article and all articles on this blog are always welcome.  On this particular article, The Georgia Citizen welcomes comments from the superintendents highlighted here.

Mychele Rhodes is Described as “Superintendent Clown” for Apparently Trying to Get Rid of STAR Teacher

Editor’s Note:  This article is a re-print from

By John R. Alston Trotter, EdD, JD

     I never cease to be amazed at today’s goofball superintendents and principals of schools.  I recently saw on Facebook that a senseless principal told a child with Downs Syndrome that he could not wear the letter jacket that his mother had made him for participating on one of the non-varsity teams at the school.  He was so proud of his homemade letter jacket, but this principal, who apparently doesn’t have enough sense to pour piss out of a boot, told him that he could not wear it because he was not a member of a varsity team at the school.  Should this principal be taken out and horse-whipped?  Would that do him any good?

     A few years back, we picketed a principal at A. Phillip Randolph Elementary School in Fulton County because he apparently recommended his Teacher of the Year for the non-renewal of his teaching contract.  People were very upset.  How can a principal be without principles so much that he or she would recommend the non-renewal of the Teacher of the Year?  Did this teacher make the principal nervous?  Was this teacher reluctant to kiss administrative ass?  How can this happen?

    Now the word is in that the Superintendent of Schools in McDuffie County, the home of perhaps Georgia’s most famed racist of the past, U. S. Senator Tom Watson, is in the throes of either recommending to the school board the termination or non-renewal of the contract of the popular STAR Teacher at Thomson High School.  We write about such silliness and pettiness and petulance in our book, The MACE Manifesto:  The Politically Incorrect, Irreverent, and Scatological Examination of What is Wrong with American Public Education (Big Daddy Publishers, LLC, 2014, 615 pages).  These kinds of actions take place all over the country these days mainly because non-leaders are put into positions of “leadership.”

Rhodes - Superintendent

Mychele Rhodes, Superintendent Clown of McDuffie County

     Today, the people who are often put into leadership roles are really tight-ass and controlling bureaucrats.  In the old days, many of the coaches were promoted up the leadership/administrative ladder.  And, quite frankly, it most of the times worked out well.  They were firm on student discipline, supported the teachers when it came to discipline, and they didn’t snoopervise the teachers, thinking that they had all of the answers.  They certainly didn’t worry about such non-sense as “teaching rubrics.”  These crazy “rubrics” are insulting.  To put creative teachers on a “rubrics” mandate is like putting them on training wheels.   These older principals certainly didn’t worry about such nonsense as forcing good teachers to act like robots, telling them how to teach and threatening their jobs for simply being creative in teaching their students. Professionals don’t need training wheels.

Teachers need to freed up to be creative.  Freed up to teach.  Stifling and suffocating them in straightjackets is ridiculous.  Making them use cookie-cutter methods is unconscionable.  It’s like a coach who has never played basketball telling a Michael Jordan or a Larry Bird or a Pete Maravich what to do with the round ball each time they get their hands on it.  Teachers are professionals who should be respected and allowed to use their professional knowledge, judgment, and wisdom with the students who are in their care.  They don’t briefcase-toting, tight-ass bureaucrats telling them each move to make.  They need these educrats and snoopervisors to get the heck out of their classrooms and let them teach.

     Now back to the STAR Teacher in McDuffie County:  We hear that he was verbally bullied and berated in a meeting today for about two hours.  Apparently, Superintendent Mychele Rhodes told him that she didn’t think that he should be allowed to teach in McDuffie County anymore.  I am thinking that the situation may go beyond just teaching the “rubrics” and other such silliness.  I think that the administration may be upset that the STAR Teacher is openly and vocally a Christian believer and that he has talked to the administration at Thomson High about the terrible disciplinary conditions which apparently exist at the school.  The administrators these days don’t want to hear about this.  They prefer to bury their heads in the sand when it comes to discipline. Also, it often appears to be “open season” on vocal Christians in public schools these days, both the students who want to bring their Bibles to schools or teachers who want to share their faith outside the classroom. If, however, this teacher were Muslim, perhaps the administration would handle him with kid gloves and make special arrangements for pork not to be served at all in the cafeteria.

     For several years, from what I hear, this school system has been hemorrhaging top teachers, including multiple Teachers of the Year and other STAR Teachers, some of whom are moving to safer or better schools and others of whom are leaving the profession entirely. What is going on in McDuffie County that is causing these successful and award-winning teachers to leave the system?

This superintendent-clown in McDuffie County seems to want to snoopervise the STAR Teacher for no substantive reason. Is this done in other school systems? She is apparently saying that she is concerned about this popular teacher’s “rubrics” and the number of his writing assignments. What?! She needs to worry about abiding by the Georgia Statute (O. C. G. A. 20-2-940[g]) that does not allow a Georgia superintendent to suspend a teacher from the classroom for more than ten days – and certainly not without the teacher being granted all of his substantive due process rights and having any “charge[s]” given to him by the seventh day. This superintendent, who is the Executive Secretary of the elected McDuffie County Board of Education, has left this school board in a breach of the law. This school board, via its appointed superintendent, has egregiously and flagrantly violated this Georgia Statute. No excuse whatsoever. Yes, she needs to worry about abiding by the law, not about pettiness. This STAR Teacher has been left dangling in the wind, with his reputation being besmirched because he first of all was apparently just sent home without any explanation of any “charge[s].” Not until after three weeks was he brought in and told about his “rubrics” and other such silliness. His reputation could not help but be ruined by such sloppy and sinister and nefarious actions of the Superintendent’s Office of McDuffie County. Rhodes Must Go! She either does not know the Georgia Law or does not give a rat’s behind about it. Mr. Norreese Haynes and I went to McDuffie County a couple of weeks ago and informed the administration there about the law. It apparently went over like water off a duck’s back. Next time, we will bring a crew and hit the sidewalks. I wonder if the good People of McDuffie County respect the Supreme Court’s holdings about Category One Free Speech fora? Parks and sidewalks. Ole Tom Watson might not have respected the humanity of all of God’s creation in older times, but I think that a new day has dawned in McDuffie County and the good People of McDuffie County will not put up with shabby treatment when they are informed about it. The way this STAR Teacher has been treated in McDuffie County could make some people draw the conclusion that he had robbed the McDuffie County Regions Bank. He has still to this day been kept in a “Teacher’s Gulag” or a metaphorical “penalty box.” What has been his “crime”? Caring for the kids and teaching creatively? Good grief. Rhodes Must Go!

This STAR Teacher is not a one-year wonder.  He is no fluke.  He was chosen by the students and parents of McDuffie County as the WalMart Teacher of the Year in both 2006 and 2009.  (This Teacher of the Year program has apparently been discontinued.  Otherwise, he may have won this award several more times.)  This is in a county of perhaps 250 t0 300 teachers.  He has also been named an “Honor Educator” twice in the last five years.  Only students who graduate with distinction are given the opportunity to choose one teacher who has most impacted them.  This year marks the second time this teacher has received this honor.  “STAR Teacher,” “Teacher of the Year,” and “Honor Educator” and yet Mychele Rhodes is apparently trying to can him.  So, does she not want superb teachers positively impacting on the children of McDuffie County?  Or, is this superintendent clown all about control?  What is it?

MACE has gotten in late on this case in McDuffie County but is monitoring it closely.  I think that I will recommend Mychele Rhodes to the august body of The Superintendent Clowns of America.  Yes, this I will do.  And I think that I have some pull with that group. This superintendent clown in McDuffie County appears to be out of control. © GTSO, 2015.

Pickle Deal’s “Education Plan”

Pickle Deal’s “Education Plan”

By John Rhodes Alston Trotter, EdD, JD and Norreese Lamar Haynes, BSBM

     It is painfully obvious that Governor Nathan Deal doesn’t know his ass from deep centerfield when it comes to public education.  His so-called “education plan” should be pickled but never used.  It is also painfully obvious that a junior staffer must have banged together his so-called “education plan” that is outlined on the Governor’s website.  Three of the first five points are the same worn-out global dribble that was spouted by Presidents George H. W. Bush and William Clinton in Goals 2000 before the hellish and ineffective No Child Left Behind and Race to the Top programs were mistakenly ushered in under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama.  None of the former global goals were realized, and the latter two programs just wreaked havoc among a profession that formerly was collegial and nurturing within its nature and in its scope.

These punitive so-called “education reform” programs which punish the so-call “failing schools” rather than analyzing what is causing this systematic failure of low performance have been dismal flops, and yet Governor Deal is jumping on the band wagon of threatening to engage in educational deconstructionism, not because there is any clear evidence that charter schools drawing from the same student population significantly increases achievement (they don’t) nor because there is any history of such (there is not, not even in Milwaukee or Baltimore which were the early adopters of such).  Quite frankly, the so-called “plan” that Governor Deal has on his official website was obviously handed over to a junior staffer to put together, and this junior staffer apparently doesn’t know the difference between pronouns “that” and “who” (“Increase the percentage of teachers and administrators that are considered effective[.]”  Emphasis added).  The half-baked call for more students to take a “STEM” curriculum is simply another educational fad which will short-change our students in the humanities, history, civics, arts, music, and physical education.

There is not a scintilla of seminal thought in the Governor’s so-called “education plan.”  Just a quick perusal of The MACE Manifesto: The Politically Incorrect, Irreverent, and Scatological Examination of What is Wrong with American Public Education (Trotter & Haynes, Big Daddy Publishers, 2014, 615 pages) will show just how silly and shallow and wrong the Governor’s so-called “education plan” is.  The above book points out that “you cannot have good learning conditions until you first have good teaching conditions,” and yet Governor Deal is using his so-called education plan to issue a not-so-veiled threat to Georgia’s teachers.  He starts out with the wrong premise, viz., that students are not learning because teachers are not teaching.  As The MACE Manifesto points out, teachers can teach students but teachers cannot “learn” the students just like physician can treat their patients but they cannot “heal” their patients, and the attorneys can defend their clients but their cannot “acquit” them.

The Governor falls into the same trap of trying to treat today’s educational problems as technical breakdowns (the teacher is not effectively teaching mentality) rather than motivational breakdowns. The MACE Manifesto explodes this notion in a rather long and informative chapter, “On Learning and MACE’s DAM Theory of Learning.” This chapter goes into great detail about how three essential elements are required to be in place before effective learning can take place and virtually every so-called “reform” effort ignores these essential elements, including Governor Deal’s:  (1) Discipline, (2) Aptitude, and (3) Motivation.  Not all students will learn the same amount of information at the same pace because there are varying degrees of discipline, aptitude, and motivation within each student at each school.  It is obvious that these concepts are foreign to the junior staffer(s) who apparently pulled together the Governor’s so-called “education plan.”  To actually implement any form of pay plan that is tied to the performance of a teacher’s students to a standardized test is educationally stupid and unconscionable.  A system of “merit pay” or ‘value-added evaluations” do not work simply because students are not inanimate chunks of cookie dough floating innocently and harmlessly down a conveyor belt. The MACE Manifesto has another an explosive and lengthy chapter on “merit pay” (“Merit Pay for Teachers: More Bullshit from Bill Gates, Eli Broad, and Arne Duncan,” Chapter 35).

The Governor’s stated plan to turn over “failing schools” to outside groups which will come in with their hyped-up charter school “opportunities” looks more like a plan to give financial “opportunities” to his supporters to feed on the public  trough.  This stated desire to turn over our schools to these businesses reminds me much of another chapter in The MACE Manifesto: “The Gates of Hell have Prevailed against the Local Control of Public Education! Rants and Fulminations against Bill Gates, an Anti-christ of American Public Education!” This unfettered rush to undermine and destroy the local control of public education is unconscionable and reprehensible.  Doesn’t it seem likely that if nearly all so-called “failing schools” come from schools with students from the same socio-economic-cultural milieu that the problem does not reside with ineffective teaching but with endemic problems beyond a sophomoric attempt to blame the problem on teachers?  Why not, as The MACE Manifesto calls for, free up the teachers from ridiculous and rigid mandates so that they can be creative with these unmotivated students, hopefully inspiring these unmotivated students to become learners?  After all, if the Governor turns over these schools to private businesses, he is not going to strap these new “educators” in straightjackets of the likes of the draconian and counter-productive TKES.  If these new schools of “choice” or “charter” or whatever you want to call them are so wonderful without the rigid, inflexible, and suffocating mandates and rules, then why not free up all of the public schools in Georgia with a fresh wind of freedom and creativity?  What is good for the goose is certainly good for the gander.

Governor Nathan Deal is not a friend of public education in Georgia. He wants to privatize education in Georgia. Nathan Deal is dangerous. Governor ISIS wants to decapitate public education in Georgia. © JRAT, 2015.

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