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Complaints mount at Mt. Diablo High

By Theresa Harrington
Saturday, February 11th, 2012 at 1:03 am in Education, Mt. Diablo school district.

MDHS student Charles Campos posts sign on locked restroom.

Since a majority of teachers voted No Confidence in Mt. Diablo High Principal Kate McClatchy in December, some students and a parent have joined in a chorus of complaints about her leadership.

At Monday’s school board meeting, three current students, one former student, a parent and four teachers outlined their concerns. I am posting links to video clips of their comments below, along with excerpts.

Senior Savannah Ridgley: Video: http://qik.com/video/47936180

“Two weeks ago, I voiced some of my personal concerns. However, I’m not the only student at the high school. Nor am I the only student with concerns due to Ms. McClatchy’s actions and decisions. Over the course of the past month, we the students have compiled our major concerns. Tonight, we bring them to you with the hope of some action being taken. On Jan. 5th, 2012, we held a student-only meeting to acquire a better understanding of some of the concerns of the student body. The issues raised were: building and bathroom accessibility, or rather, lack of; poor bathroom sanitation; the intended layout of the all-academy structure; the lack of accessibility to AP classes; that student input isn’t valued and is even ignored; the lack of QEIA (Quality Education Investment Act) funding and resulting schedule changes; the method of punishing tardy students; the idea that actions are only taken by Ms. McClatchy under bad publicity; the fact that educational minorities are ignored; the fact that sports aren’t given adequate notice when they have forms to turn in; and the fact that students are no longer permitted to wear Rosaries.

We, the students of Mt. Diablo High School have needs, rights and concerns. And now, we the students of Mt. Diablo High School are using our voices. Several students are going to expand on a few of these issues. I hope that you take all of these problems into consideration. Thank you.”

Senior William Maldonado: Video: http://qik.com/video/47936252

Unfortunately, the first part of the video has a glitch in it, so it doesn’t start at the beginning of his comments. Complete audio of the meeting is at http://www.mdusd.org/boe/Documents/audio/2012/February%206%202012%20-%20amplified.mp3.

Maldonado said he was speaking about the district’s failed punishment policy, as well as the fact that only one restroom was open (until this week) and it was not near his classes. He said McClatchy requires students who are tardy to retrieve a tardy pass from an administrator, even if they are tardy because they had to wait to go to the restroom. When students obtain tardy passes, they are given a glove and instructed to pick up trash for about five minutes, he said. By the time they get to class, they are 10-15 minutes late, he said. They miss warm-up activities or the chance to go over homework, he said.

From video: “..When you miss the beginning of class, you no longer have the opportunity to participate in classroom activities, which I feel, at the beginning of the class period, is the most important. It sets it up for everyting that will be done the rest of the period. When you come in 15 minutes late to class because your principal wants to punish your tardiness, I feel it is unacceptable and is a waste of time. Why it makes sense to use taxpayer-funded school time to have students pick up trash is beyond me. This policy has not lowered substantially the rate of tardiness and it appears to cause a concern among many students and teachers. Many students take advantage of this policy simply to come more late to class. This policy punishes the students who wish to pursue their education further and provide the school with higher test scores and rewards the students who don’t want to go to class. We are the students of Mt. Diablo High School, but we are motivated.”

Vanessa Lopez: Video: http://qik.com/video/47936301

“I am a graduate of Mt. Diablo High School, class of 2011. I was enrolled in the ACME (Architecture, Construction, Manufacturing and Engineering) academy for three years. In all my years at Mt. Diablo, I never received referral or had any problems or any disciplinary actions taken against me. In January, 2011, my boyfriend Kevin Rojas was shot and killed in Bay Point. At the time of his tragic death, he was enrolled at Gateway (continuation) high school, but had spent freshman through the beginning of senior year at Mt. Diablo High. When he died, our principal, Ms. McClatchy, called me into the office and told me that I could no longer attend Mt. Diablo High, (Unfortunately, the video was cut short at this point.)

Lopez also said that her academy was not allowed to have a memorial service and that McClatchy accused her of being a gang member and tried to involunarily transfer her to Crossroads High. Lopez said she was not a gang member and that she and her family complained to the district. District officials allowed to return to Mt. Diablo High, she said.

“Ms. McClatchy disrespects students,” Lopez said. “She is the wrong principal for any school.”

Teacher Wendy Spencer: Video: http://qik.com/video/47936460

“I was here two weeks ago to express my concerns over what’s happening at Mt. Diablo High School. At that time, I used the analogy of a bus on the autobahn, filled with students and staff. From where we are, at the back of the bus, the road ahead is obscured by thick fog. We ask the driver, Ms. McClatchy, to slow down, to be careful. But she just says: ‘If there’s no speed limit on the autobahn, I can go as fast as I want!’ We’re trying to say: ‘We don’t think as fast as you’re going is warranted.’ This is the cycle I feel we’re in. Ms. McClatchy wants an all-academy school with only her approved academies. And 9 to 12th grades by the year after next at the latest. Many teachers and three of four academies have asked, ‘Why?’ and have not gotten an answser in the year we have been asking. I personally voted No Confidence because I thought she would be forced to explain her reasoning, at least. But, that has not happened. And I am afraid for the future of the students who do not fit the mold. Thank you for your time.”

English teacher Stephanie Sliwinski, who teaches in the Architecture, Construction, Manufacturing and Engineering (ACME) academy and is a district parent. Video: http://qik.com/video/47936528

“I’m here tonight not only to speak to you as someone who has taught in an academy at Mount, but has also taught in the general population and literally built the successful academy ACME from the ground up.” (Unfortunately, clip was cut off before she finished her comments.)

She said ACME is a California Partnership academy.

“When life gave me lemons at Mt. Diablo High School,” she said, “I made lemonade.”

She said the academy raised test scores and that McClatchy wanted to scale it up. She compared the academy to a pitcher of magic lemonade. But, when the academy gets larger, she said it would be like a baby pool and students would no longer be able to taste the lemonade.

AP Environmental Science teacher Patrick Oliver.
Video: http://qik.com/video/47936561
(Unfortunately, I only captured a portion of his comments on video.)

He said he gets along well with McClatchy personally, but that he and many other teachers object to her plan to scale up the four existing academies to create an all-academy school.

From video:
“And then, she said to the school faculty: ‘We are going to vote on whether the faculty thinks we should accept an all-academy model with freshmen this year or next year,’ which seemed kind of curious, because of the fact it’s a liege of these academies…(audio obscured). And in fact, a lot of people didn’t want to actually vote on that. They wanted to vote on: Should we have more academies? Or, should we look at other options? Whereas, many of us refrained from voting on that because it seemed to me like a transparent political move so that she could go to the board and public and say: ‘See, the faculty voted and they support my plan.’ When, in fact, a for a large number or a vast majority of the faculty, that was not the plan we were interested in. So, many of us didn’t vote. And I’m not sure how it’s going to turn out, because we haven’t been given that information.

I am excited about some of the changes that are happening. And, Friday, I had a meeting with the principal and a bunch of other people in regards to a new interest in a sustainability pathway through the IHTA (International Hospitality and Tourism Academy). And, I’m super excited to develop an agriculture class and a horticulture class and continue my environmental science in the context of the academy without the AP label. I do have an Ag degree and five years of horticulture experience. However, however, I’m being told we need to develop this as soon as possible, ie. basically next week, next month. Which means piloting new courses, new textbooks. No extra staff time. No staff development time. No money from the county, district, school. And so as a professional grant writer in years past and developing a nonprofit, I’m working with enough nonprofits to develop resources to bring to the school and I would love to develop that on the side. But, I have been basically told: ‘Good luck, you’re on your own, kid.’ So, I’m going to do whatever it takes and from what I understand, I would love to increase the support from the district to accomplish these goals. And I don’t feel like I can count on any.”

English teacher Dan Reynolds: Video: http://qik.com/video/47936630
(Unfortunately, I missed the beginning of his comments on video.)

He said he felt like the “listening process” developed by the district to respond to the vote of No Confidence was not working and that teachers need some intervention from the board. The district held listening meetings, in which administrators wrote down concerns expressed by teachers at the school, along with recommendations for improvement, he said.

“From video:
“We felt listened to. But, one of the problems is that when we finally saw the compiled list of what went on in those listening sessions, there was a glaring omission. When we were presented the list of our recommendations for improvement, one of the recommendations that came up time and time again was – as I am told and as I witnessed at the one session that I visited – was that one of the items was: replace Kate McClatchy. Each teacher in those sessions was given two green dots to put on the recommendation they felt was important. You could put it on two different recommendations or if something was so important, you could both your stickers on one. I put one of my stickers on: Replace Kate McClatchy, as did three of my other colleagues in that listening session. In the other listening sessions that reported to me from colleagues who were at them, nine stickers on “replace Kate McClatchy,” five stickers on “replace Kate McClatchy,” six stickers. When we got the list that was a report of those listening sessions, the item “replace Kate McClatchy” was left off. From the six listening sessions, we have no idea how many green dots were placed next to that because we’ve never been shown that information. However, things continue to move forward. Jan. 30th – Monday of last week – there was an opportunity for the administration to present to us the plan that they had written after reading that list. They didn’t include us in a conversation. They took those items on the list and made a new plan. And then they presented us with the plan….” (Video got cut short.)

He said the administrators are listening, “but what we get back is shallow.”

After hearing all these complaints, four trustees said nothing. Trustee Gary Eberhart said he had submitted a list of questions to Superintendent Steven Lawrence about the district’s reponse to the vote of No Confidence. He asked Lawrence to add to the list the question: How many restrooms are at the school and how many are available to students?

Later in the meeting, district resident Brian Lawrence addressed the board about a proposal to hold less formal community meetings where the public could ask questions and give feedback to the superintendent and community. Lawrence (who is no relation to the superintendent) said he supported the idea, adding that trustees sometimes resemble a Soviet Politburo — “stone-faced and nonresponsive,” even when faced with an issue involving basic human dignity.

Video: http://youtu.be/yUdrPlERN44

To bring attention to the restroom issue, Amnesty International students have launched a “Pissing is a Human Right” campaign highlighting the school’s failure to provide adequate facilities. Here is a link to restrooms requirements on the California Department of Education’s website: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ls/fa/sf/toiletrequire.asp

Based on these requirements, anyone in the community could file a Williams Act complaint, alleging the school is violating items p and q on this form: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/cr/documents/ucpchecklist1112.pdf#search=restroom%20toilet%20paper&view=FitH&pagemode=none

How do you think the district should respond to the teachers’ vote of No confidence and students’ concerns about locked restrooms and other issues?

FEB. 11 UPDATE: Due to technical difficulties, I have just recovered additional videos I shot at the meeting — one from an adult (whose name I didn’t get) supporting the teachers and students, one from a parent and one showing Trustee Gary Eberhart requesting more information.

Here is a link to parent Diane Ridgley’s comments: http://qik.com/video/48038264

Here is a link to comments made by a woman supporting the students and teachers: http://qik.com/video/48036090

Here is Eberhart’s question to the superintendent: http://qik.com/video/48041718

FEB. 13 UPDATE: Teacher Dan Reynolds told me that of 94 teachers, only 23 cast ballots when McClatchy asked them to vote on converting to an all-academy school next year or the following year.

“The fact that only 23 voted tells you right there what people want,” he said.

FEB. 14 UPDATE: The Mt. Diablo school district has given students at Mt. Diablo High a sweet Valentine’s Day gift — all the restrooms are open.

Teacher Dan Reynolds said Trustee Gary Eberhart walked the campus this morning, visiting every restroom to make sure it was open and stocked with toilet paper, soap and paper towels. Those that weren’t are being replenished this morning, Reynolds said.

Eberhart also met with the Amnesty International club to talk about what students need to do to keep the restrooms open, Reynolds said. Members of the club plan to reach out to the rest of the student body to stress the importance of keeping the restrooms clean.

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  • Theresa Harrington

    I have just posted an update with information from teacher Dan Reynolds regarding the academy vote.

  • MDHS Teacher

    Theresa, where can I find the update you speak of @51.

  • Theresa Harrington

    It is at the end of this blog post, labeled FEB. 13 UPDATE.

  • Theresa Harrington

    Restrooms are open and being stocked this morning, according to teacher Dan Reynolds. I have posted details in an update to this blog.

  • Anon

    WHY DON’T THE SUPERINTENDENT AND PRINCIPAL CHECK THE BATHROOMS AND TALK TO THE AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL CLUB? THIS IS THEIR RESPONSIBILITY! WE HAVE PAID FOR TWO CSBA FACILITATORS WHO TOLD THE BOARD THAT DAY-TO-DAY MANAGEMENT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE STAFF-NOT THE BOARD. THE BOARD RESPONSIBILITY IS THE STRATEGIC PLAN, AND TO HIRE AND FIRE THE STAFF. REPEAT: FIRE!

  • Doctor J

    The credit goes to Theresa not Eberhart — the power of the press — it took National ridicule to correct the bathroom situation at Mount. So why is Gary “touring the toilets” this morning ? “Re-election” campaign. The constipation of the accuracy of the SARC reports still needs to be answered by Gary — why has he allowed the Audits for the last three years to cite the inaccuracy of the SARC reports on the Physical Inspection of the campuses to be inaccurate WITHOUT correction ? So why is Kate McClatchy still there ? So why is Steven Lawrence still there ? Don’t they know how to solve problems ?

  • Theresa Harrington

    Anon: You are absolutely correct. Both governance facilitators have told trustees that they are responsible for the big picture — and for hiring staff that is accountable for carrying out the board’s goals. The superintendent and his staff are accountable for the day-to-day operations of the district.
    Trustee Gary Eberhart told me last week that he was continuing to ask questions about the situation at Mt. Diablo High and to “apply pressure.” He also told me that it would not be uncommon for him to pay a surprise visit to a campus to see the restrooms for himself.
    Apparently, his behind-the-scenes pressure was not working, so he decided to pop by the school.
    As you may recall, I also saw Eberhart outside Glenbrook MS when complaints surfaced about overcrowded buses taking students to El Dorado Middle School. It’s clear that he is not necessarily content to submit questions in writing to district staff and wait to get answers.
    Although Principal Kate McClatchy can say, “no comment” to the press, the public deserves to know why the restrooms were closed. As student Jeffrey Mosher told the board, their job is to provide information to the public.
    All of this could have been avoided if the district simply complied with the law.

  • Doctor J

    Theresa said: “All of this could have been avoided if the district simply complied with the law.” PRICELESS. When will the Board learn to hold the Supt publicly accountable ? Since keelhauling and public flogging are no longer socially acceptable, what should Lawrence’s and McClatchy’s punishment be ?

  • Wait a minute

    So, Gary Eberhart is trying to take credit for “solving the problem” in order to boost his reelection bid and he’s taking his “Tour of the Toilets” to “prove” how active he is???

    First of all, The Gary is relentlessly micromanaging the administrators he oversaw by hiring.

    Secondly, The Gary is every bit as responsible FOR THE PROBLEM since he hired blatantly incompetent administrators to begin with.

    Thirdly, The Gary and his board majority WILL NOT hold Stevie Lawrence or Kate McClatchy accountable!

    Don’t forget the stunning lack of safety at MDHS under Kate/Stevie that led to “Toilet Gate” in the first place and this after Kate failed at her last school (Olympic HS).

    Don’t forget the Vote of No Confidence in Kate by the teachers and her incompetent top-down management style that she shares with her direct supervisor Stevie Lawrence!

    Yes my friends, from busses to toilets to lack of safety, the students of MDHS and the MDUSD have suffered long enough under the tyranny of The Gary and his pals.

  • Doctor J

    MIA: Lawrence and McClatchy. They are at the infamous “undisclosed location”. Fill their voicemails !

  • Theresa Harrington

    I just received an email reminder about this free Ed Trust webinar: “Great Principals Talk about Getting It Done” http://eo2.commpartners.com/users/edtrust/index.php
    I wonder if any MDUSD principals or SASS administrators will participate.

  • Doctor J

    2 reasons NO: its free, no travel; contrary to MDUSD culture: “getting it done” not part of district culture.

  • Theresa Harrington

    It is also curious that General Counsel Greg Rolen apparently didn’t inform the superintendent and McClatchy that locking restrooms and failing to keep them stocked with necessary supplies violated the law, after hearing complaints at the Jan. 23 and Feb. 6 board meetings.
    He is accountable to the board.

  • Doctor J

    Gary’s intervention undermines the authority of McClatchy and Lawrence — EMPOWERING the students to go “public” with their complaints and ENCOURAGING the faculty to bypass McClatchy and Lawrence and go straight to the Board for resolution. The unresolved “NO CONFIDENCE” vote in McClatchy [and indirectly of Lawrence as her direct supervisor] leaves little room for resolution of the issues between the faculty and the administration.

  • Theresa Harrington

    The students and faculty both said they have been complaining about these issues for months. If the school and district resolved such issues expediently, it’s unlikely that students and teachers would go to the board and the press.
    As I have previously mentioned, I also have special ed parents complaining to me about compliance violations.

  • Anon

    Rolen’s inaction is tantamount to complete abdication of duties. The General Counsel is responsible for Brown Act compliance in addition to all other legal compliance, and in this district he’s also responsible for busing. That puts him near the top of the list of people who should have been FIRED before this. The buck stops where?

  • Doctor J

    chaos. Chaos. CHAOS. Who is in charge ?

  • g

    Oh, you are bad..;) Yes, he is a busy man, and we want to keep the District on their toes…so— Inquiring minds do want to know:

    Since the Fardella case was settled, on January 9th the board reported three more potential legal cases. As they reported out on 2/6, we now know that one is Roaldson.

    I now see that another Small Claims case against MDUSD is in the works. On 1/31 MING JUNG CHOE filed for $10,000. in Small claims court. Trial Date set for 3/12. The District has not yet reported out on this one.

    I wonder what this one is about, and if they are going to fight this one too. Does anyone have any info?

    And speaking of Roaldson, does anyone know why they are sueing a science teacher and the vice principal at College Park?

    …and the ‘third possible case’…hmmm?

  • Wait a minute

    Rolen is that “kind of guy”!

  • The Observer

    A couple of points…….. Did anyone bother to talk to the custodians about bathroom maintenance? Were they not cleaning the floors, toilets, urinals, filling soap dispensers, and filling paper towel holders? If they were doing all that, then someone was soiling the floors, not flushing toilets,backing up the urinals, destroying soap dispensers, and tearing paper out of dispensers for some nefarious purpose. Let’s see…..who might be urinating on the floors, not flushing after use, plugging up urinals with paper towels,and tearing soap dispensers off of walls, and urinating in stairwells? It’s not done by elves…

    Perhaps all of those who are posturing about the bathrooms should spend some time following a custodial crew around for a week before passing judgement.

    Over the years school bathrooms have an ongoing infamy only surpassed by the mystery meat in the cafeteria. Ask any group of administrators from a diverse range of schools and they will tell horrific stories about what they have seen occur in student bathrooms. Much of the problem stems from a school culture in which some teachers will support a “Pissing is a human right” philosophy as opposed to developing a culture in which students take responsibility for using facilities appropriately.

    Right now you have Gary Eberhart. who is clearly clueless of his role, acting as “Inspector Clouseau Toilet Inspector”, Lawrence who once again seems to have gone into the witness protection program, a teacher, who candidly is using kids for political purposes, and a whole lot of people missing the forest for the trees running around like stampeding lemmings. This thing should never have gotten this far.

    Open the bathrooms and display the following signs.

    The floor is for walking…….Flush when finished……Stand close ….wash your hands with soap……….use only the towels you need……. Throw litter is garbage cans….. Do not write on the walls…….Thank you for your courtesy……….Go to Class.

    Take pictures at beginning of each day and end of each day. Compare pictures. Invite public and media to see pictures and in person.Take action when necessary.

    Get on with the learning

  • Just J

    Thersa, don’t get us started on Special Ed violations. This district is sinking. I was thinking that there might be some hope but I think it is a lost cause.

    I hope Lawrence and Mc whats her name are together reading the want ads!

  • Doctor J

    Observer said “Gary Eberhart. who is clearly clueless of his role, acting as “Inspector Clouseau Toilet Inspector”, Lawrence who once again seems to have gone into the witness protection program,” Your comments are priceless:-)

  • anon

    I love when the board doesn’t go and actually see for themselves what is happening at a school site, they are criticized. I also love that when they do go and actually see for themselves what is happening at a school site, they are also criticized. That’s pretty cool. How can I sign up for a sweet gig like that?

  • Helll Freezing Over

    Observer also made me question the custodians … if they were NOT cleaning the ONE bathroom that was available until today (why clean locked bathrooms that don’t get used?), and NOT filling soap and towel dispensers because there were NONE hanging on the walls to fill, then what were they doing? Were they cleaning under the stairs where students found some bit of privacy to relief themselves?

    I know there are several ‘jobs’ a custodian does, but I still want to know if the adminstration was paying them to clean all those bathrooms if they weren’t being used.

    And I totally agree with daily before/after pictures, and suggest the school admininstration places a monitor – an adult – at each bathroom to help ensure the bathrooms remain clean, available to all students and used for the intended purposes. I don’t want to hear “we don’t have any $$ for that, the state budget … wah wah wah” -The District managed to create a rather large reserve as we all learned … I want to hear solutions from the administration, solutions that are legal and enforced – that’s what they get paid to do. Not lock every bathroom except one on a campus that serves 1500+ students because that’s easier.

  • Helll Freezing Over

    Oh, I want to make it clear, I have total and utmost respect for the school custodians, as I do for anyone in the business of cleaning up after anyone else.

    I think the custodians deserve far more than they are paid for what we, the public, expect them to do and take for granted.

  • Just J

    I called the school today to see if all bathrooms were open. They told me they were and the issues with the No confidence was with 5 teachers only. She also said that the bathrooms were open during passing times and locked during class time. I think she was fibbing. She had no knowledge of urine stained areas on campus. Just that the kids were out of control and they get no support or money from the district to fix any of the problems. When I told her that the HS gets more money than most she said it was grant money and seemed to act as if that does not count. I guess money is what is what it all comes down to with the adults in this district.

  • g

    …and speaking of strange things and ‘such’, why in the world did the District pay Marisol Padilla $2100.00 last year to (translate??) books on Permaculture and Climate. Was that required text? Is it one of those things all schools are charged for? It wasn’t charged to an individual school, but rather to the Dent Center site account.

    Did your school get copies of those (translated?) books? Did you get English copies?

  • Wait a minute

    Just J @77,

    Only FIVE TEACHERS voted No Confidence is complete and total BS which is exactly how these so-called “leaders” and their supporters/apologists operate!!!

    A Majority of the teachers voted No Confidence.

  • MDUSD Board Watcher

    Where in the world did Sue Berg go?

    Or maybe she is posting under one of her alter egos? She no longer uses Long Time Board Watcher.

    Sue where are you?

  • Just J

    @79 I know this. This is what the office told me when I called them.

  • Anon

    Instead of SARC’s meaningless pro-forma status report, the district should open up all the student restrooms for inspection during the public meetings being scheduled at each high school and Bay Point. Give the community guests a map of the campus including student restroom locations and let us decide for ourselves.

  • Doctor J

    @M. Bd Watcher: Sue is like a Ground Hog — outed once again, she went back into her space for another 6 months. Actually, I do think she has been moonlighting at the CDE and got double caught yesterday. Last Sept, it was on a Saturday night but yesterday it was in the morning, so perhaps one too many lattes ?
    @Annon#82 — The SARC is only meaningless on facilities when the Facilities Inspection report is not accurately reported on the SARC as has happened THREE years in a row, and caught THREE years in a row by the Auditors.

  • Doctor J

    This is confusing; today Lawrence orders McClatchy to open all the restrooms, and yet Eberhart is the one who shows up to do the “inspections” and talk with the students. Why didn’t this happen way back on Jan 24 after the first complaints to the Board that McClatchy was present to hear ? Sounds like a lot a manure to me.

  • Realia

    Just J, did you get a name when you called the MDHS office? My guess is you talked with the office manager who followed McClatchy from Olympic (why she left Olympic is another story in itself). She’s a mercenary and will say whatever she’s told by Comrade Kate, who in turn says and does whatever she’s told to say and do by the board and superintendent. MDUSD, where lies come first – from the top down.

  • g

    Election year– Eberhart’s cause celebre–Employees taking the heat–par for the course.

  • MDHS Teacher

    @77 Whoever you spoke to on the phone LIED to you. I was one of 60+ teachers voted NO CONFIDENCE in Kate McClatchy, not five. That is a lie and a joke and just goes to show how they want to cover everything up. I’m sorry you were lied to, muliple times. Kate McClatchy is in denial and if she can’t smell the urine in the Academic Building stairwell then she obviosuly doesn’t tour her school very often.

  • Just J

    I know she lied. I thought it was interesting. I just decided to call and see if anyone would talk. She had a very nice voice but I could hear the B.S. in her voice. So sad that it has come to all of this. The kids are what matter! I did tell her that the kids deserve better. She asked me if I knew why the bathrooms were closed to begin with and I told her yes but what is being done about the supervision. She could not answer me except to say that there is not enough money. So sad

  • Students at Mount Diablo

    Sadly this isn’t the worst.
    Kate McLiar isn’t what this school needs, we need a teacher who cares about the problem not about his/her own self-gain. her selfish ways alienate teachers and punish anyone who wants to feel safe on campus. at the beginning of the school year students who attended the registration process (IE getting PE uniforms filling out emergency info that hasn’t changed) were given a clip board with the following question.
    Do you feel safe at Mount Diablo? please rate with 1 being safe as possible and 10 being life threatening.
    My fellow students and i circled 10. the school is unsafe and unclean.
    her excuses as there is not enough money isn’t true. if that was the case then where is the donation box in the office, the answer is that it doesn’t exist. just as her “Great feeling and support to teachers and students at Mt.D” are non-existent.
    Her ways of handling death threats is a minor pat on the wrist and a “Don’t do it again”
    she refuses to suspend or school transfer without a parent or student going over her head.
    her office should have been cleaned out before she got the chance to put down her disgracing name plate.
    She is an evil, dark hearted being as far as my peers and teachers are concerned. teachers can’t speak their mind about her in fear of getting fired. those who support her are just as bad. she does nothing to support the learning environment we students deserve.
    Her rambling to find an answer to cover her ass is hurting us even more. all she cares about is making herself look good and firing teachers who think that she should be fired PERMANENTLY.
    How she ever got her license can’t be explained by logic unless she bribed the instructor to give her the license.
    everyday me and my friends go to school we look at the ground in fear of looking at the wrong person and getting into a fight.
    teachers say we should help but what can we do besides cry for help on the internet where we can hide our names, our age and our fear.
    she hasn’t made any improvements, we want a principle who can take a step of action every day against the violence at our school.
    she takes away our rights and limits our voices and those who speak out are most likely on her to get list.
    Mount Diablo needs a change for the better not for the worst and Kate McClatchy needs to go.
    - a concerned party of students.

  • simple solutions

    Great! Sounds like they need bathroom monitors… A couple of very simple solutions:
    Hire one of those bathroom ladies ever present in Eastern European public restrooms (for a fee they let you, give you 10″ of TP and may even let you use soap!). It is a shame that all this time is being spent on something that could be easily solved by students. Let me quess, those 14 years old kids (and older) don’t know where to urinate or that they need to leave the place clean if they want to find it clean next time they want to use it. The principal maybe a bozo, but that is not an excuse for poor behavior! Please clean these toilets, keep them clean and move on to the next topic which should be teaching, improving quality of teaching and making sure that these kids are learning!

  • Doctor J

    Are the custodians taksed with cleaning ALL those restrooms every night ? A good question for Jeff McDaniel. If so, going from two to all is a huge increase in effort. I suspect they won’t be able to keep up with the effort and then blame the dirty restrooms on the students again.

  • Wait a minute

    Students at Mt Diablo @89,

    You are brave and I applaud your stand against what is wrong with your school.

    I urge you to focus your passion and ask your parents to get behind and support a teacher-trigger charter conversion for MDHS like what happened at CVCHS.

    Charter conversions should not be just for the wealthier areas of the district but should be for all schools that the MDUSD has failed.

    YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO A SAFE SCHOOL!!!

    If you and your parents collaborate with the teachers you can take back control of your school and fire McClatchy and the Superintendent and have a school that is controlled by the families in your community and the staff at your school.

    You will regain contol of the millions of dollars that the MDUSD takes out of your school to spend on administration that never even benefits your school and instead use this money to improve your school.

  • Doctor J

    Correction to CCT Editorial: Lawrence’s extension is x4009 not 4000.

  • Just J

    Noone is answering the phone at Lawrence’s office.

  • School Teacher

    Simple Solutions @#89

    In my opinion, the great majority of high school kids do know how to relieve themselves properly. The thing I’m not sure I know is what to do with the small majority that are disrupting this basic right, and causing the damage. My first thought would be the perpetrators need to be identified, and then something must be done about that. I don’t know what punishment would really get through to a teenager who thinks it is cool to vandalize a restroom. You could charge parents for the damage, you could make them put on the rubber gloves and do the cleaning, you could put them out in front of the school with a sign that says “I am one of the people vandalizing the bathrooms”. I don’t know if any of that will change them. I don’t think these are the type of people that will respond to sensitivity training type interventions. I would love to hear from others what their ideas might be. Something must be done. Just cleaning up their messes won’t make the problem go away.

  • School Teacher

    Correction on previous post

    Second sentence phrasing should read “small minority”.

  • Doctor J

    @ST#84 Actually Gary has the right idea: instill pride in the students and have them self-police instead of instilling an adult v. child confrontation. Take away the incentive of destruction by making repairs immediately, just like we do by painting over graffiti ASAP. After a period of time, the destruction will stop.

  • g

    I’m going to take the liberty of editing for Students @88. The English/grammar wasn’t great, and because of that, it may have disguised the theme. This kid was screaming for help!

    This is not only more important than where some kids take a leak, it is very high on the probable list of who does most of the destruction at this and other schools.

    Students said:
    (1) (we)were given a clip board with the following question: ‘Do you feel safe at Mount Diablo? please rate with 1 being safe as possible and 10 being life threatening’. My fellow students and i circled 10. the school is unsafe and unclean.
    (2)Her ways of handling death threats is a minor pat on the wrist and a “Don’t do it again”
    (3)PAY REALLY CLOSE ATTENTION HERE FOLKS— “everyday me and my friends go to school we look at the ground in fear of looking at the wrong person and getting into a fight”.

    (4)”teachers say we should help but what can we do besides cry for help on the internet where we can hide our names, our age and our fear.”

    EVERY DAY there is a fight at some one of the schools.
    Right this minute there is a call for cops for a huge fight happening behind Riverview Middle in Bay Point!

    Students that want to learn will not have a chance in hell until the District puts its foot down on violence!

    I don’t mean 1 or 2 kids here and there who get suspended only for guns and knives. I mean– ZERO TOLERANCE FOR FIGHTING WITHIN 500 YARDS OF ANY SCHOOL PROPERTY! You start one fight, you finish your schooling at an alternetive–period!

  • Theresa Harrington

    After hearing the MDHS grad talk about McClatchy’s decision not to allow her academy to have a service in memory of her boyfriend who was murdered, I found this section of the WCCUSD agenda interesting:

    * D.2 In Memory of Members of the School Community
    Comment:
    The District would like to take time to recognize the contributions of members of our school community who have passed away. The District requests the community to submit names to be reported as a regular part of each agenda.
    Jeremy Crowder, age 17, passed away on January 29, 2012. Jeremy was a young man that showed maturity, perseverance, and commitment to improving himself. Jeremy played football and was an honor roll student at ECHS as well as a member of the Young Scholars Program and the Angaza Program.
    Tyler DeMartini, age 18, passed away February 1, 2012. His love of baseball and passion for skateboarding and life in general were an inspiration to teammates, friends and family. Tyler will be fondly remembered for his charisma, infectious smile and charm.
    Our thoughts go out to the family and friends in the loss of their loved one.”

    The MDUSD board often recognizes former employees who have died, but I don’t recall trustees highlighting students who have died.

    Here is the entire WCCUSD agenda for tonight’s meeting, where trustees will also consider a new parcel tax: http://www.wccusd.net/wccusd/lib/wccusd/20120215_BOE_Agenda.pdf

  • Doctor J

    Where is the posted AGENDA 72 hours in advance — REQUIRED by the Brown Act and AB 1344 — “The next meeting of the 2010 Citizen’s Bond Oversight Committee is scheduled for Thursday February 16th, 2012 at 7:00 PM in the Board Room at Dent Education Center”

    MDUSD continues to thumb its nose at the Brown Act ! When will the Contra Costa County District Attorney take action against them for clear violations of the law ?

  • Theresa Harrington

    It’s posted on the Measure C website: http://mdusdmeasurec.org/