By Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
At last Tuesday’s meeting, Board Chair Lori Alhadeff told Superintendent Vicki Cartwright that she was in over her head. I have been chewing on that like a baseball player in a dugout. I am not quite sure that she is in over her head more than she has her head stuck in oush cosh by gosh.
Now board Member Debra Hixon, yes. She is way in over her head. The job is beyond what she can intelligently do. She fails to make very important connections around the ethical pieces of her job and outside work. The thought that she did not recognize that working for FTX was a conflict of interest is beyond the pale. To publicly say that you are the district’s representative and involve schools, teachers, students, and employees in an entanglement with an organization that pays you a salary is just asinine. I seriously doubt that even now she understands the grave trouble that she is in because of that relationship. Or maybe she does and just doesn’t care. I have a few words for Hixon: Patricia Good, Donna Korn, Laurie Rich Levinson, Ann Murray.
But, back to Cartwright.
Superintendent Cartwright reminds me of 45. There is a quote by Maya Angelo that says, “when someone shows you who they are, believe them.“ 45 never lied to us about what he is. He told us and showed us time and time again exactly who he was. Some of us believed our eyes and we spoke out, campaigned, and voted against him. Others believed their eyes and loved what they felt and saw. They then aligned their total allegiance to 45.
No one was in the dark about who 45 was. With eyes wide open, each person chose how they would respond. I believe we are at the same crossroad with Vickie Cartwright.
We all recognize just who Vickie Cartwright is and what she represents. Some of us choose to respond by showing up to school board meetings, educating and rallying the troops in opposition and demanding her termination and removal.
And still there are others who see and know Cartwright for exactly who she is, and they align themselves perfectly with her agenda. Vickie Cartwright can shoot someone in front of the Kathleen C. Weight Administration Building and would not lose one of her faithful followers, including Board members.
Even after the board embarrassed themselves by overturning her termination from three weeks ago, she brought public shame on them once again with the dreaded PCG contract.
Even Jeff Holness, the new board member who brought the BB item to overturn her termination found the monopoly that has been strategically orchestrated to reward PCG with millions of dollars from the district mind-boggling. Cartwright’s inappropriate relationship with PCG has placed the Board in an untenable situation where it may be impossible to cut ties with PCG, Herff Jones and Chucki Puleri and Associates without some pain.
The Board unanimously want to sever ties with these PCG, however, thanks to this monopoly entanglement that former Superintendents started, and Cartwright continued with PCG, the Board had to bring back the PCG agenda item and table it until such time staff can find some solutions for ESE and threat assessments processes. The monitoring and data storage of these services would come to a screeching halt if PCG was eliminated effective immediately.
Similar troubles are brewing with cap and gowns, announcements, class rings and diplomas with the local company, Chuck Puleri and Associates and national company, Herff Jones. Let’s be clear. The corruption and collusion didn’t start with Cartwright. I have been saying that a districtwide corruptive mindset is embedded in the culture of Broward.
Cartwright fit right in. She assessed the culture and Board members, at the time assessed her. There was an informal, but clear meeting of the minds. Cartwright understood what was expected of her from this culture of corruption and she gladly aligned her speech and action to secure the job and keep the
I stand firm today on my previous editorial. I said if even one Board member voted to keep Cartwright, the entire system needed a takeover. The fact that five voted to keep this corruption… three former Board members and two of the new members. Changing out Board members is not the answer. It
is time to gut this Board.
Hopefully, Governor Ron DeSanta heard my Christmas wish.
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