TPS Board Members lack of public communication

Just got off the phone with TPS board member Bob Vasquez. We (family, friends, block) have been trying to have communication with the TPS board since November 2009 having sent some 153 e-mail messages and well over 30 phone calls. After some 6 months and after the levy failed then they want to finally meet with us. Can you belive that? We begged for communication and a meeting long before the levy vote and they wait until after the levy fails to see that we did have power and now they want to meet with us. So we said "why bother?" after the levey and the fact that Foley is leaving we might as well just wait for the new super and try and have communicaton with them.
Anywaz...in todays coversation Bob Vasquez admited that he and other board members do not anwer messages via e-mail. He also said that he has not gotten a single phone call message that we left with the TPS treasures' office. So we called the TPS tresures' office that takes messages for the board and they were shocked saying they gave each message to the board members!
He yelled at us for using names like "idiot" when referring to TPS and TPS board members. We did not deny that even referring to other names they were called at in the so called town meetings before the levy and said why not when you fail to communicate with the public for some 6 months what do you expect? We also said why not when the Blade and other editorials call you names why can't the public do the same? The public has done the same at the meetings and in the media. Now the big one: he actually said that he never (yes he said never) uses names and calls people names! When we challenged that he asked us to tell him what he said and when. We did not fall into any trap as we said the following... "you know in your life that you have called people names either by mouth or in your mind." His said no he has never done that and never called anyone any names. Talk about holier than though - no wonder the levy falied. TPS board appear to be members that are above the public.

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The elite "Progressives" sitting in their ivory tower have no need to communicate with a plebeian like you. Why should they listen to you?

Not Again. Hi, in answer to your question, "why should they listen to you." well we are the voting public that voted on the levey and voted no on the levey. here are some fact on that vote too. bob and the rest of the TPS board as ignored the voting public and the voting public let that be known in the election when the levy failed. I am not educated like you and only have a high school diploma but I do have a voice and that voice got 64 people in my block to vote no on the levy. Then on the election day we stood at the local poll and got another 134 people to sign a paper to vote no on the levy. We did this all over the city and at last count we had hundreds and hundreds voting no on the levy. so we did our job and for the next levy if the board does not listen there will be thousands and thousands to vote no on the levy. we only ask that the board not ignore the conserns of the public and what they are dong with the money. it is well know that it is not being used correctly for education.

The vote doesn't matter. The TPS board only listens to its' masters, union leadership.

You admit that you called him an idiot, yet you are surprised when he does not return your calls and emails?

Now, I am no shill for any TPS board members (and I agree that the group is something less than a collection of stellar intellectuals), but if you expect common courtesies such as the return of messages, then I humbly suggest you find language that is more likely to generate the desired result.

As my momma always says: "you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar."

I am not a public servant (at least not in the elected sense) but I can tell you as a journalist and someone who draws a salary at a public university (and a blogger of some minor renown) that I usually ignore the emails from cranks who are so cheesed off about something I wrote that they cannot engage in the most basic of civil discourse.

Methinks this has less to do with ivory towers or "progressive" politics and more to do with poor interpersonal communication. It is one thing to show up on a public message board and refer to soemone as an idiot than to direct a personal communication to the same person and use a perjorative such as "idiot."

history mike. you seem to have the same problem as the TPS board. If you read again my post says nothing about me callling him an idiot , be very careful what you read and what you don't read. We called some idiots and used the same language that the Blade and other editorial used but i did not call bob himself an idiot and you don't see that in the message. i have no problem with being called an idiot when I do idiotic stuff, but if i was an elected person i would expect that if i did idiotic stuff and did not listen to the voting public. this is not a matter of civil discourse but an issue regarding public monies that tps has wasted and wasted. i am sure that you get upset at the elected people that do not listen to the voting public also whether it be the local and all the way up to the federal elected officials. you can respect the office but you don't have to respect the person in the office if they are not doing their job. bob and the rest of the TPS board as ignored the voting public and the voting public let that be known in the election when the levy failed. I am not educated like you and only have a high school diploma but I do have a voice and that voice got 64 people in my block to vote no on the levy. Then on the election day we stood at the local poll and got another 134 people to sign a paper to vote no on the levy. We did this all over the city and at last count we had hundreds and hundreds voting no on the levy. so we did our job and for the next levy if the board does not listen there will be thousands and thousands to vote no on the levy.

Here is what you wrote, Peter:

"He yelled at us for using names like "idiot" when referring to TPS and TPS board members. We did not deny that even referring to other names they were called at in the so called town meetings before the levy and said why not when you fail to communicate with the public for some 6 months what do you expect?"

The way this is written it appears you admitted calling Vasquez "idiot" as well as other names, and the post reads as though you are justifying the use of name-calling because he did not return calls or emails.

Again: if you want to play politics, you need to understand how the game is played, and while you may be frustrated that Bob Vasquez (or any other board member) does not return your calls and emails, there are other ways to reach out to him. You can track him down at board meetings, you can find other places at which he shows his face, or you can pester the local media to hear your story and they will bug him until he speaks (assuming the media finds your story compelling). Instead of hollering "idiot" you can find more constructive and creative ways to get your views heard. Heck, the fact that you went to this public message board is probably a lot more effective than what you have been doing so far, as a board like Swampbubbles has considerable influence beyond the few dozen regular posters: local media mine this site for stories, and politicians certainly pay attention to the blogs and message boards.

Besides, since you are so vocal in your opposition to the levy (for the record, I agree with you about the bad idea that was the failed levy) why would any TPS member who supported the levy even want to talk with you? They probably assumed you had your mind made up, and that any time spent with you was going to be wasted, since you would be unlikely to change your mind.

Also: elected politicians are under no obligation to speak with you. Now, most politicians have enough intelligence to figure out that they need to speak with the public a little, or they would not get re-elected, but there is no law that says Vasquez or any other politician has to answer your calls or emails, just like there is no law that you have to put up with their schemes. You can always lead a campaign to oust any board member you do not like, or - get this - you could run for office yourself. Given your stated track record at gathering signatures, this could be an option for you.

Regarding your simultaneous email to me: I live in Toledo, I work in Bowling Green, and you can use the handy Toledo Blade Public Employees database to see that my annual earnings hardly qualify me as some wealthy elite, but yoiu are of course free to believe anything you wish. I have to admit it is a lot easier to assume that anyone working at a university must be sipping expensive vodka and munching imported caviar, as our friend GuestZero opined on another local board recently. However, I am an average schmuck with a mortgage on a house in a Rust Belt city with declining population, and I share the same concerns you have about out-of-touch politicians who want to tax me into poverty.

I just choose to avoid personal attacks when I deal with pols - they are more likely to write you off if they see you as a loud-mouthed crank or (worse) a mentally unbalanced threat.

the e-mail to you was not simultanous. and being a prof or reporter and all you are wealthy to me and others that don't make even what the grad assistants at your college make. and referring to one as an idiot is the not the same as actualy calling one an idiot or anything else for that matter. electied public officials due have a duty to speak to the public by the way even if it is not written in their job despcription. we may be loud mouth cranks and unbalance and undeucationed but we made our vote due to the reponses we did not get from bob and the board. never stop fighting is what the board needs to see and for your info we did not have all our minds made up until the last minute to actually vote as each was free to vote yes or no on the levy and other isues. i am not educated enough to run for tps board and as you said i am sure a crank mouth like me would not get on any elected postion, but if i did i would respond to any communicaton from the public regardless of what they thougth of me or called me even if they called me a 1!@#$ (**&^ %^&%6 $%^&567 45674 @#$%&%^&*( and more).

Wow

Look, dude: I am not trying to argue with you, and I agree with you on a lot of points. However, your nitpicking about the word "simultaneous" is strange, as the email hit my box at 9:47 am this morning, and your previous comment was posted here at 9:33 am. Granted, 14 minutes is a long time to an amoeba with a one-day lifespan, but to humans this is a very short stretch of time. In addition, given the rather lengthy nature of your email, I think it is safe to assume that you finished your SB post and then composed your email to me, hence the use of the word "simultaneous."

However, for the sake of peace-making, I will agree to the use of the terms "sequential," "near-simultaneous," or any other word that conveys the above meaning.

Also, read again: I was talking about how you might be perceived by people like Vasquez when I used the terms "mentally unbalanced" or "loud-mouthed crank." To me you seem like an intelligent and well-reasoned taxpayer with a legitimate complaint.

mike. thanks for the compliments. as a bgsu proff and writer you are certainly very smart and much smarter than me. but mike not being nit picky. i just worked for years (not now) in a job where simultaneous means same and 14 minutes is a lifetime and can mean the difference between life or death! and that job was in human terms and belive you me 14 miutes is a long time.
as for the other stuff well me and my family know that certain promises were made by TPS board members running for and or appointed to office including a certain one that stood on my front steps BEGGING for my vote including a promise of communication and not slacking off in that. so if i have to be mean and or rude to keep the board members on those promises and keep them accountable for the promises they made mainly for the children.... then i will. best wishes to you as a prof and toledo citizen!

we did the local media to and even got in the blade back in march.

The vote doesn't matter. The TPS board only listens to its' masters, union leadership.

well the vote did matter a little here at least for a short time as we will not see tps income taxes on top of tps property taxes and such. however in other ways you are right as they would have made some stupid cuts even if the levy passed such as cutting good teachers but actually creating new admin positons and even an administration raise. but as for the other part of your statment it is very sad that it is very true. TPS and TFT and others have run the education of toledo children into the ground.

post peter.

chirs,
you are welcome. regardless of what people think of me or my block of supporters to block the tps levey this time. the elected officials still need to communicate with the voting public even if the voting public are uneducated. we were only rude when we were ignored for months and months.

I agree with historymike. I would have hung up on you.

deere1

maybe that is why you are not on the board and an elected official. later in the day we talked to another elected official (brenda hill) who is nice and but is still very evasive on the tps issues said it would have been very bad if bob had hung up as he is an elected official and we are the voting public. BTW: bob did not say he did not say he did not answer our messages becuase of our tone or anythin he said he does not answer e-mails period.

just want to say that board members made promises including one on my front step whem begging for my vote. one promised communciaton and better education for the children. i am only keeping them up on those promises.

TPS only responds when it suits their agenda. Bob Vasquez does answer emails as he answered an email from me when he thought I was going to go public with a picture of an incident at one of the schools. So if he said he doesn't answer emails, he is not only an idiot but a lying idiot.

Of course he answered my email but he failed to follow through with what he said he was going to do. As a matter of fact he answered the original email, I replied and he answered back, then he disappeared into cyberspace.

Why did it have to get to the point of name calling? Because after days, months, years of not responding to the public, the public has a right to get a little or a lotta angry at these offenders. These board members want to keep the status quo, want to keep the public in the dark so that we don't see the illegal use of money, the wasteful spending, the abuse of the children, pedophilia, the cover ups, the stupidness of some of their decisions, the stark nakedness of who they are and who they are beholden to and want to keep the public in different circles of no return.

I say if you have children in Toledo, run for their lives out of the TPS school system. That is finally my mission. Tell parents to find a school, any school, other than a TPS school to put their children in because when TPS is finished with them (the child) is uneducated, damaged by uncaring teachers and an administration that lacks common sense.

Why would a school system spend almost a million dollars to litigate a special education case, when the money could have been spent on the child and not on the attorneys? Just plain "idiotic."

No more money for TPS untl they do what they are supposed to do, educate all children.
Why do the children and grandchildren of board members get special treatment when it comes to the schools that they attend? They get the cadillac services, when another child does not qualify. Shame on Board members!

NEPOTISM!

This superintendent search is just a sham to extend John Foley's contract and keep the same people in charge, that were left here to guard the hen house when Sanders and his crew left. People, you better wake up!

Until parents stand up and say, "ENOUGH" don't look for any changes. The public said "ENOUGH" by voting down the levy, now parents need to say the same thing.

l

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my point exaclty there PURNHURT. we had more than enough and that is why my whole block and so many others around us voted no on the levy. i hear you on this super search too as they have the dregs if you ask me in the finals. btw: we took our kids out of tps and sent them to washington local. they have siad nothing but great things since we did that too... they love it there. we also have others family members and friends children that have left tps and go to washington local and even maumee city. most of the kids in our hood don't even go to tps and go out of district. tps needs to listen to us....

this summer to encourage parents to take their children out of TPS schools and put them anywhere else but TPS. The charter schools aren't all that great but at least they listen to the parents.

Parents can home school their children, either on line or straight home schooling.

An interesting observation: The Big Dig at the Imagination Station is being sponsored by K-12 Virtual Academy. I am assuming that they will be recruiting from there. I go to IS at least once a week and will be talking to parents about enrolling in K12 Virtual Academy! TPS does not deserve to have any students until they listen to parent's, community, the public and educate the children without retaliation because the child has a vocal parent. Enough is enough!

And they definitely don't need any more money to mess up.

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