Trails in the Sand by Peter Traciet, the Street Detective
Instead of dragging the sands, Ol’ Pete has been treading water. More than 25 inches of water settled in parts of Broward County which resulted in schools shutting down for two days last week. But, a little rain didn’t stop Tuesday’s Board meeting. The Superintendent and Board Members came back together to finalize their decision on two fellow Board members accused of inappropriate touching. Zeman slapped one of the Executive level employees on the buttocks in the Board room back in December.
The slap was witnessed by another Board member and was reported by the victim to then superintendent, Vickie Cartwright. Cartwright ordered the victim not to say anything. Did she then used the information to barter, bribe or extort (you be the judge) an extension of her tenure and a lucrative settlement agreement?
Peter has read where Zeman has vacillated between not remembering that he slapped someone on the buttocks to claiming it was a nothing burger between two military men (Ol’ Pete has reliable information that Zeman is not a veteran) to friendly butt patting similar to what you would see between two football players.
Ol’ Pete has news for Zeman. You’re not on a military battlefield, football field or basketball court. You are in the Boardroom of the sixth largest school district in the nation.
Brenda Fam was also accused of an inappropriate touch by a student. She unequivocally denies it but sources are telling Peter Traceit that her own words may have buried her six feet under.
According to sources, Fam was closing in behind the student when a picture was being taken. She brushed against the student, intentionally or not, and allegedly said something to the effect of “I almost did a Zeman on you.”
Who knows. Might Fam’s words plant an idea on the sand?
Ol’ Pete is as not all together clear on next steps but it seems the Board has elected to allow the Florida Ethics Commission to sort out the dirty mess. Craig Kowalski, the Chief of Broward’s Special Investigative Unit (SIU) referred both cases to the Ethics Commission via a system called Gateway. Hopefully someone else without any ulterior motives will be able to sort out this supposed witch hunt and nothing burger.
The Board workshop became even more interesting as a new face, Sherri Wilson, Director of Textbooks came before the Board for the second time, around policy, to evaluate books at schools when challenged by parents. The Street Detective learned some interesting facts about the books on shelves in schools. There are some books with pornography in them and a few examples were shared by outraged parents today. At first blush Wilson seems very impressive. After two board workshops, she presents like a lot of hot air. Pete left the Board meeting thinking that it’s going to take a whole lot of brooms to sweep off the dirty mess around these textbooks.
The Detective doesn’t like broken promises, but it is relieved that the PROMISE program has joined the Phantom of the Opera to make its final curtain call. While this program may have once served a good purpose for students who committed minor misdemeanor offenses, it now serves up students a traceable record. The original program allowed students to attend a program within the school district in lieu of being arrested for some minor offenses, however, after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting, the program was under attack. Results from the MSD commission change the playground for the program. Students who now attend, a report is sent to a state database that can be accessed by law enforcement. Additionally, students who attended the program as far back as five years ago, were also entered into this database. So, 20 years from now, once a student who attended the program tries to become a Supreme Court Justice or get cleared to work for the FBI or CIA, their PROMISE attendance will be uncovered from the dirt. Ol’ Pete is wondering what NAACP president Marsha Ellison will do with all the time she now has on her hands. The Program should’ve kept her busy though I heard her visits were extremely limited to the school campus where the program is housed in years.
Ol’ Pete is dragging the sand and the waters and getting into a muddy mess to continue bringing you the news as heard from the street and other dignified places.