Tag Archives: Values

IF I BUILT THE STATUE OF A REAL MAN – 2

.jpg photo of slain Arizona sailor
Fiancée of slain Arizona sailor held him as he died.

Young Navy sailor killed while protecting woman

MILWAUKEE, WI  –  Tragedy strikes on Mother’s Day.  A 19-year-old Navy sailor was killed in West Allis Sunday morning, May 8.  Phoenix Castanon is usually the first sibling to tell his mom “Happy Mother’s Day.”  This year he didn’t get a chance to call her.

He was shot to death near 84th and Rogers around 2:40 a.m.

“He had a heart of gold, he was a protector,” Tiata Nez-Dunklin said.  She is Castanon’s mother.

Protecting was what he was doing the night he was murdered.

West Allis police say Castanon was hanging out with a few friends.  One of the women was harassed by a man in a car while she was walking down 84th Street.  She was scared and ran to the car Castanon was sitting in at the time.  He got out and approached the man.  The two exchanged words.  The man pulled out a gun and shot Castanon.

I’m proud of him, that’s how we raised him, defend the weak.  He’s my hero.”

Fiancée of slain Arizona sailor held him as he died.

Castanon is originally from Arizona.  He was stationed in Great Lakes, Illinois.  Castanon was at the end of his training to become a Gunner’s Mate.  That goal was ripped away.

‘I’m mad at the world for being the way it is,” Nez-Dunklin said.

West Allis police say the shooter is still out there.  Anyone with helpful information should call police at 414-302-8019

WHEN RACE IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE SAFETY OF SPECIAL NEEDS CHILDREN

The Great Divide
9 takeaways from Boston’s investigation into Mission Hill School; DA reviewing

SUFFOLK COUNTY, MA  –  A blistering investigation released this week revealed institutional failures that endangered children for years at Boston’s Mission Hill K-8 School, including overlooked reports of sexual abuse and bullying.

Suffolk County District Attorney Kevin Hayden on Thursday said his office is reviewing the report for “any crimes or incidents where mandatory reporting of sexual assault allegations did or did not occur.”

The report spurred Superintendent Brenda Cassellius to take the extraordinary step of recommending the school’s closure at the end of the academic year in June.  The Boston School Committee will vote on the closure May 5.

“This is the stuff of nightmares,” Mayor Michelle Wu said Thursday on GBH News, pledging accountability in BPS.

Many parents have continued to defend the school.

Here are nine key takeaways from the report:

1.  The school ‘systematically failed to protect students’ from sexual abuse, investigators found

The 189-page report by the law firm Hinckley Allen was sparked by complaints from parents that Mission Hill officials were ignoring their concerns about bullying, and separately, allegations by five families that one student had repeatedly sexually abused their children.

Investigators found the school “systematically failed to protect students” from sexual abuse by neglecting to document, investigate, or address allegations.  The school’s lacking response to sexual abuse allegations went far beyond a case in which BPS in August agreed to pay a $650,000 settlement to five Mission Hill families who said their six young children were repeatedly sexually abused by the same student and administrators failed to adequately act.

Investigators blamed much of the school’s problems on a former administrator they labeled “MH Admin 3.”  That administrator’s tenure coincided with Ayla Gavins, who served as principal for 12 years until summer 2019.  She did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment.

The report details witnesses’ accounts of the principal’s response to the case of the student identified in court records as “A.J.,” who was accused in the families’ lawsuit of inappropriately touching fellow students and digitally penetrating one from 2014 to 2016.  Gavins told parents who complained they should “pull their kids out” and that A.J. “had a right to be” there, the report says.  A staffer recalled employees also voiced concerns that the student would be criminalized because he was Black, the report says.

The investigation found Mission Hill failed to complete official incident reports for at least 20 incidents of sexual misconduct allegations against A.J. and at least another 40 incidents of sexually inappropriate behaviors involving the school’s other students from 2013 to 2021.

The report says the failure to document sexual conduct was “an intentional by-product” of Gavins’s efforts to protect students of color.

2.  A ‘persistent and well-documented bullying problem’

Investigators concluded Mission Hill had a “persistent and well-documented bullying problem” that ballooned due to the school’s “hands-off attitude” which “taught students to protect themselves by being abusive.”

Mission Hill School’s failure to implement standard disciplinary procedures led to a rise in bullying that was “largely unaddressed” by Gavins, according to the report.  Investigators wrote that Gavins often paid “lip service” to handling serious bullying incidents.

Parents told investigators that Gavins avoided giving direct answers to safety questions and accused white parents of being racist or hostile when they advocated for their child’s safety.

3.  Special education failures

The school also failed to properly provide special education services due to its philosophy that “each child is special and learns at their own pace,” investigators found, leading to students’ learning challenges going unaddressed.

The report found that students with disabilities — who make up one-third of the school were likely failed in many ways, including the school’s practice of removing disruptive children for “what was effectively babysitting in another room.”

4.  BPS was aware of Mission Hill’s problems for years

Over the six years before the investigation, BPS received multiple complaints from parents and investigated several internally.  In 2015, BPS hired attorney Joseph Coffey to investigate allegations.  Coffey found Gavins failed to provide specialized instruction by special education teachers, allowed improper restraints of children, created a culture of intimidation, and asked staff to “misrepresent” the school’s English as a Second Language services, the report says.

From 2014 to 2017, the report says, BPS received numerous complaints reporting sexual misconduct at the school.  Coffey’s 2015 report cited concerns by a staff member who reported incidents involving A.J. in a staff meeting and recommended the student be evaluated, but Gavins allegedly refused due to concerns about Black boys being “over diagnosed” with disabilities.

In August, a parent told Cassellius that six employees in the superintendent’s office failed to act despite knowing that the school inadequately responded to reports of abuse, assaults, and bullying.

5.  Three key e-mail accounts deleted during investigation

The report suggested some school employees put their self-interests before that of children, including by using a separate e-mail server and deleting at least three key employee e-mail accounts while the school was under investigation.

6.  Cultural problems cited

Investigators said they found a “cult-like” climate at the academically struggling school, which espoused its philosophy as the unique “Mission Hill Way,” and an intolerance of dissent that ostracized employees and parents who voiced concerns.

7.  Retaliation concerns

Parents said staffers who raised concerns were fired or pressured to leave.  Several parents told investigators that the school fired an employee because the employee filed a “51A” report to the Department of Children and Families against A.J. in November 2014, which the parents felt disobeyed Gavins’s “view of keeping matters in-house,” the report says.

Although the employee reported leaving for other reasons, the employee also described being pushed out by Gavins and enduring a “pattern of hostility by [Gavins] and long-term teachers,” the report says.

8.  Academic failings

Investigators concluded that Mission Hill failed to provide rigorous academic instruction in math, writing, literacy, and science.

The school focused on literacy for marginalized students, but often didn’t recognize that students from all backgrounds struggled, investigators wrote.

9.  Gender-nonconforming students bullied

Investigators found the school fostered a culture that “allowed increased bias and discrimination” toward transgender and gender-nonconforming students.  One parent told investigators the school “allowed a culture” where transgender students were beaten up in the bathroom.  Investigators wrote they found evidence Gavins “showed an unwillingness” to address concerns raised about these students.

The Great Divide is an investigative team that explores educational inequality in Boston and statewideSign up to receive our newsletter, and send ideas and tips to thegreatdivide@globe.com.

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, HAVE YOU SAW THIS MAN?

.jpg photo of man who assaulted a Child in OKlahoma City OK
HAVE YOU SEEN THIS MAN, or DO YOU KNOW THIS MAN? Please call Oklahoma City OK Law Enforcement immediately!

Man wanted for assault of 13-year-old at
Quail Springs Mall

Friday · April 22, 2022

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK  –  Oklahoma City police need help to identify a man seen on video punching a 13-year-old at Quail Springs Mall.

The incident happened back on April 9. Police said a 13-year-old saw a man with a dog and walked up to him to ask if he could pet the dog.

THE SECRET PASSWORD

.jpg photo of child abuse graphic
Our Children are in danger every minute of every day!

Protect Your Children From Predators:
The Secret Password –
Please Pass It Forward!

By: Kait King

I am very proud to introduce Ms Kait King, a True Writer Extraordinaire.

I don’t mind telling everyone that I have been Blessed every way possible, since starting that little one page gift to Google+ and all it’s users very near 8 years ago, and Ms Kate King is one of those Blessings, a very Large Blessing to be exact.

Unlike all the times I have shared this, apparently the whole original story is no longer available on Ms King’s site, The Writer’s Blogk, but please go there and read Ms King’s work!  THANK YOU SO MUCH Ms Kait King!

I met Ms King shortly after I opened our website.  I can tell you what I remember from back then: Ms King was a very good writer, and well educated.  But I was glad that I wasn’t standing in front of her, because I was humbled to tears.  This very special Lady was as good a Parent and Mother, as any that has ever walked this earth…  and I stand by my words today.  There was only one thing that struck me as odd, she was working on a project with the name of “The 3 Pigs”.

Thank You all for reading, and when you are finished reading this unforgetable story, please do as Ms King wishes: Please Pass It On!
Robert StrongBow

A copy of a letter I sent to all of the primary schools to save children – simple and super effective!  Please pass it on

My son is 29 years old now and it has always amazed me at how many parents through those many years, and even now, who have no idea about the concept of the Secret Password.

I used to work as a National Intelligence Support Officer for the police.  I have had projects that have highlighted the danger our children are in while getting to and from school and this is an issue which is not going to go away.  I have a simple solution that may help to keep children safer than they are now.

My son was five and starting school, and with my background and experience I was very aware of the dangers of kerb crawlers and people who would snatch kids from off the street.  So I devised this password plan, my son picked the word – at the time he believed he was allergic to zucchinis’ as he detested them so much so that became our Secret Password.

This password meant that if I was unable to pick him up from school and had to send someone whom he was not familiar with, or a stranger altogether even, if they knew that Secret Password it was ok to get in the car and go with them.  If the person did not know the Secret Password my son was to drop his school backpack and run like the devil was after him, (which would be the case), straight back into the school grounds and to the principal’s office.

He only had to use this once, and because he did run, he is still here and I am not writing this letter to you out of a sad and broken story where the solution is all but too late.

But I write this out of a realisation that something so very simple could help to protect children, our children, for they are all of our children and we all need to be responsible for helping to keep them safe.  I hope you find some benefit in this little gem and hand it out to all parents and caregivers and tell all that you can please, so that this safety net is in place.  I thank you for your time to read this and thank you also, for teaching our children and caring for them.

With the most sincerest intent and with regards
Kait King, BA Crim.

TX AG Opposes Loopholes In Our Laws Sexual Predators Can Exploit To Avoid Justice

.jpg photo of TX Attorney General LogoAG Paxton Sends Letter to ALI Opposing Revisions that Benefit Sexual Predators

AUSTIN, TX  –  Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton joined a multistate letter to the American Law Institute (ALI) objecting that their proposed amendments to the Model Penal Code (MPC) would weaken laws used to prosecute and prevent sex crimes.  Paxton and 37 attorneys general had previously sent a letter to the ALI that resulted in positive updates to the MPC, but additional interim revisions passed by the ALI Council have raised important new concerns.

The U.S. Department of Justice, the National Association of Attorneys General, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children have also criticized the MPC revisions, because they make it more difficult for law enforcement to protect victims while also creating loopholes that sexual predators can exploit to avoid consequences for their acts of depravity.

“The ALI is supposed to work to improve the law, but their proposed changes would cater to criminals while silencing victims of abuse and human trafficking,” Attorney General Paxton said.  “I will never stop fighting for the safety and wellbeing of our most vulnerable and victimized Texans, and I call upon the ALI not to weaken our laws to the advantage of those who commit sex crimes.”

To read the letter click here