Thursday, October 14, 2021

Point of Order!

When any member of the school board calls a "Point of Order", business stops. It grinds to an instant halt - or it should.

As we all saw on Tuesday night, Holmes ignored parliamentary procedure. A board - any board - every board - cannot tolerate that.

Not a word should be uttered - until the Chair deals properly with the Point of Order.

Robert's Rules of Order explains the exact process of dealing with it. As Trustee Scott asserted, the superintendent had to know what should come next. Why didn't he explain it? His words should have been, "Madam Chair, it is necessary to deal first with the Point of Order."

Holmes wouldn't have known what to do, and then the superintendent could have explained, speaking into his microphone so that ALL could hear, the process for dealing with a Point of Order.

He probably doesn't have to worry about his job. If Holmes got mad at him, and then her three buddies and she decided to fire him, the three conservative trustees probably would not have joined in. A super-majority is needed to can him. 

How many is a super-majority in Richland2-Speak? 3/5? 2/3? 3/4? 

But, even if he got canned, he's got 18 months of pay to find a new job. How long would it take him to find a new job? 15 days? How many lines do you think he has in the water already?

Were the trustees smart enough to put in his contract that he gets "up to 18 months of severance or until he starts a new job, whichever comes first"? Or did they give him 18 months of pay ($349,500), even if he starts a new job in 15 days?

Who knows the answer to that $349,500 question?

How to Get Control of Holmes

The District cannot afford another meeting like October 12th.

This is an Open Letter to the Richland 2 Board of Trustees. 

Stay calm.

Don't interrupt.

If Holmes goes on a tear, let her run until she runs down. Then resume speaking. If another tirade starts, just stop speaking until she runs down again. 

One person talks at a time. Maybe I'll offer my Talking Stick to the board, as long as it doesn't end up under the gavel.

If Holmes tries to move on, stand and say, "POINT OF ORDER" - RONR §62:4-5

If you are not recognized, then Trustees Agostini, Scott and McFadden (and others) should stand, begin to collect your materials, and prepare to walk out.

If that doesn't restore order, professionalism and respect, just walk out.

The superintendent may follow you out and offer peace and reconciliation. If so, follow him back in. If Holmes heads for Outer Space again, walk out again.

It'll take about three times for Holmes to get the message. Sort of like training a dog to sit and not to bark.

Open Letter to Robert's Rules Expert

Attorney Helen McFadden is a recognized expert on Robert's Rules of Order. In 2019 she conducted a workshop for Richland 2 trustees. Some of the trustees want her to return. 

Members of the public should send emails to the superintendent ( and request him to add an item to a future agenda for the board to discuss and vote on Robert's Rules of Order training. Board Policy BEDH invites the public to submit suggestions for agenda items. You can make it short, such as: "Pursuant to Board Policy BEDH and in view of the chaos at the October 12, 2021 board meeting, I request the addition of this item to the board meeting scheduled for October 26, 2021 Regular Board Meeting (at least three days later). Item: Training for the board on Robert's Rules of Order."

The following email has been sent to Attorney McFadden.

Dear Ms. McFadden,

I encourage you to watch the October 12, 2021 Richland 2 board meeting on

Chaos reigned supreme, because of the board chair's lack of leadership skills, lack of knowledge of parliamentary procedures and refusal to follow even the basics in Robert's Rules of Order.

The last ten minutes of the recording will give you a clear picture of the disrespect shown by the board chair. Her disrespectful comment to Trustee Scott (formerly, Elkins) about an "orange suit" referred to Trustee Scott's arrest after a board meeting when she was accosted by members of the public in the R2i2 lobby. They should have been arrested, not Trustee Scott. Holmes' remark was definitely hitting below the belt.

Holmes is obviously unaware of §62.10 in Robert's Rules which provides for Removal of the Chair. Your advice to the board would be very helpful. Should they use a Richland 2 security officer to remove her or should they use a deputy of the Richland County Sheriff's Department to remove her?

This meeting and other recent meetings would serve well as Case Studies in how not to conduct meetings, and I suggest their use in any trainings you might offer.

There were many times when the superintendent could have bailed Holmes out and defused the anger and high emotions of the chair, but he didn't.

Richland 2 is fast becoming the laughing stock of South Carolina.

I understand that you may not reply to me. 


Gus Philpott
Richland Two resident

More comment on end of 10/12/21 board meeting

As the October 12, 2021 board meeting continued to melt down, the real fireworks exploded during the last ten minutes.

At (2:26:45) the meeting moved into Board and Superintendent Comments, and Trustee Agostini was first up. She thanked those who showed up and who spoke. When she offered an apology to me (by name), Holmes started to come unglued again and slammed the gavel down.

As I wrote previously, Trustee McFadden made a reasoned statement. She acknowledged that the night had been "nerve-wracking". She is a calm woman, and I suspect she tries hard to avoid controversy. She said, "We've got to learn how to get along as best as we can." She added, "We need to act like adults..." Her mentioned that her (campaign) slogan was "Collaboration and Cooperation." 

(2:29:45) Trustee Scott was next. Right here is where the meeting headed Due South. Had Holmes heard a word that Trustee McFadden said?

I have already written about the last ten minutes of the meeting, but I find myself thinking about it often. In my many years in business, I don't think I have ever witnessed such a preposterous display of attitude, control and dictatorship as I saw by Holmes that night.

Every rule for the actions of a board chair was violated. 

Trustee Scott made a motion. Trustee Agostini seconded it. Holmes completely disregarded it. Why? Because it was aimed at her. The motion was for her to step down until she received ethical training in Robert's Rules of Order. Holmes blew a fuse. Holmes declared that Trustee Scott was out of order (for recommending a training class to the board chair). 

Listen to Holmes' constant interruptions and over-talking, while Trustee Scott tried to finish her comments. Scott's motion was seconded.

Holmes said, "Going on to ..." and Trustee Scott interrupted and stated there was a motion on the table.

Where was the superintendent? He must know Robert's Rules of Order. Why didn't he step in and correct Holmes? Then Holmes called on Caution-Parker, who began with her own disparaging comments. 

At (2:34:36) "Point of Order" could be heard. It was ignored.

At (2:34:56) Holmes said, "At this time I'm going to make my comments and then we are going to make a motion to adjourn." WRONG MOVE, TERESA. A SECONDED MOTION WAS STILL ON THE TABLE, AND A POINT-OF-ORDER WAS OUTSTANDING.

She said, "I have never seen such a situation as this in my life. It is amazing to me that adult people would use a school board meeting for your own personal political agenda. We are here for children. We are here for children. We are not here - we are not here for this. We all realize that this is a motion and a movement that is going around the country - that this could disrupt (unintelligible) and to do things at a meeting that are not appropriate. So at this time, that's all I'm going to say."

WHAT NEEDED TO HAPPEN? Trustees Scott and Agostini needed to rise to their feet and state again, POINT OF ORDER. They should familiarize themselves with how to remove the board chair from the balance of the meeting. Should that vote fail, which it would probably do, then Agostini, Scott and McFadden should walk out.

And they should walk out of every meeting that descends into chaos like this one did. Then maybe Holmes, McKie, Caution-Parker and Manning would get the message that "The Three" will not tolerate the disrespect and disregard that was shown toward parliamentary procedure tonight by Holmes.

Holmes asked the superintendent if he had anything to say and then did not wait for him to answer. 

Holmes made her own motion to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Caution-Parker (of course). No discussion. Vote: 6-1

Facebook & Holmes

There used to be a Facebook page for "Dr.Teresa Holmes" (no space between Dr.Teresa). Now there isn't. Or, if there is, I cannot view it.

Gee, now why wouldn't Holmes want me to view her Facebook page?

If you see my name on her Facebook page or any mention of me, please grab a screenshot and email it to

I remember her page, because it identified her as a Richland 2 "Commissioner". It still does, according to a friend who viewed it this morning. Of course, Richland 2 School Board doesn't have Commissioners. It has Trustees.

Maybe she meant Commissar?

There is a Facebook page for "Dr. Teresa Holmes" (space between Dr. and Teresa) with little activity on it. 

In a nasty email to me dated September 15, 2021, Holmes wrote: 

"Gus, I have often tolerated you hateful remarks and email. However, this time you have gone too far.  I lost my husband Rev. Dr. Jacob A. Holmes Jr. 4 years ago which, I know you are fully aware of.  I will no longer tolerate nor concern myself with your continuous diatribe of falsehoods and insults.  After this message you are officially blocked from any further contact   with me.  Go spout your hate on those who care  about you and what your deceitful lying  mouth has to say.....Do not contact  me again or include me in your racist, hateful. lying  remarks or emails.  It is sad that someone of your advanced age is not concerned about your mortality and relationship with God.  I will pray that God will forgive your outright evilness and have mercy for your pitiful soul.  It has to be hard working on being so evil.  

Dr. Teresa Holmes 


Because I cannot view her Facebook page, my guess is that she blocked me. As a public official, she is treading on thin ice when she blocks a constituent. That Facebook page appeared to be her official page for the position she usurps as school board trustee. It recently showed board members at a reception with the Fort Jackson Commanding Officer. So it is a public page.

But maybe she can block me, because she is not legally a school board trustee. As I've written many times, she violated S.C. state law 8-13-1110 by taking the oath of office on November 13, 2018, before she filed her Statement of Economic Interests Report on December 4, 2018. To refresh your memory, here is the state law:

Disclosure of Economic Interests

"SECTION 8-13-1110. Persons required to file statement of economic interests.
(A) No public official, regardless of compensation, and no public member or public employee as designated in subsection (B) may take the oath of office or enter upon his official responsibilities unless he has filed a statement of economic interests in accordance with the provisions of this chapter with the appropriate supervisory office."

Holmes violated the law twice; first, by taking the oath before she filed her SEI and, secondly, by entering upon official responsibilities before filing the SEI.

So did Amelia McKie.

Big Problem with Holmes' Bio on R2 Website

There is a huge problem in the biography of Teresa Holmes on the Richland 2 website. How long has this false information been there? What is the source of the false information? Did Richland 2 verify any of the information before posting it? Here's a screenshot of the bio.

Did you spot it yet?

At the end of the second paragraph is the sentence: "Dr. Holmes obtained an Education Specialist Degree (Ed.S.) and a Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) from North Central University."

North Central University is a widely-known, pretigious, post-secondary educational institution. According to Wikipedia, "North Central University is a private Christian university in Minneapolis, Minnesota, associated with the Assemblies of God. It is owned and operated by 11 Assemblies of God districts of the upper Midwest. NCU was founded in 1930 and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission."

North Central University's website is

So, what is the huge problem?

According to a response this morning from North Central University, it does not, and never has, awarded the Ed.S. or Ed.D. degree!

Why would Holmes' bio state that her degrees are from North Central University?