Saturday, April 29, 2023

Safety Committee Meeting - May 2ne

The R2 School Board's Safety Committee has announced a 5:30PM meeting on Tuesday, May 2, 2023, at R2i2. 

The agenda shows the the only item is a discussion of Implementation of Metal Detectors..

Why is the Safety Committee addressing an "implementation" of metal detectors. The decision belongs in the authority of the Superintendent, or her designee.

The committee is a group of well-intentioned but untrained volunteers, with the exception of the R2 Director of Safety & Security and the RCSD liaison. The committee may eventually make a recommendation to the Board about metal detectors, but the agenda for Tuesday's meeting doesn't include an Action Step, just "discussion".

May 1st - Special-Called Board Meeting

Richland 2 School District has announced a Special-Called Board Meeting for Monday, May 1, 2023, 6:30PM.

The agenda states there will be an Executive Session for the purpose of a 1) Security Update and 2) Receipt of Legal Advice pending Litigation.

Again, these "purposes" are general, not specific. Is the District running afoul of South Carolina's FOIA law? 

S.C. Code of Laws §30-4-70(b) reads, in part, "...the presiding officer shall announce the specific purpose of the executive session. As used in this subsection, "specific purpose" means a description of the matter to be discussed ..."

"Security Update" is not specific.
"Litigation" is not specific.

Is it time for a complaint to the S.C. Attorney General?

Is the "Security Update" about the stabbing at Ridge View High School? No need to go into executive session for that.

Is "Litigation" that lawsuit about to be filed by Attorney John Mobley, related to that stabbing?  The Richland County Fifth Judicial Circuit Publis Index doesn't indicate a filing yet.

Friday, April 28, 2023

Stabbing lawsuit - already!

Well! That didn't take long.

WACH-TV is reporting today that the family of one of the stabbing victims at Ridge View High School on Tuesday is suing Richland 2 School District and the mother of the suspect, named by WIS-TV earlier in the week as Tony Abrams, age 17.

WACH-TV did not name Attorney John Mobley's client or the student.

However, the article answered a couple of my questions about prior incidents. The article states:

"Attorney John Mobley says this is not the first incident between the students.

"He says days prior the suspect allegedly assaulted the student with brass knuckles and took his belongings."

What? Abrams (allegedly) used brass knuckles against the stabbing victim "days prior"? And stole his belongings? At school? And Abrams was still in school???

How bad is crime at Ridge View High School?

Is it under-reported to RCSD? Do administrators treat crimes as discipline problems? A few years ago I found a Discipline Schedule somewhere in online District materials. As I recall, there are three levels of discipline.

Where do brass knuckles and theft fall in the grand scheme of "discipline"?

Thursday, April 27, 2023

RVHS Information to Teachers, staff, all

What information has been given to Ridge View High School teachers, staff, students, other employees, parents, and community members about the criminal act (stabbing) that occurred on Tuesday at RVHS?

Anything? Nothing?

Does the astonishing silence mean they will just sweep it under the rug? 

Will the District and the School try to hide behind privacy? Confidentiality? 

Do those in-charge just hope the furor will die (ok, poor choice of wording) down?

What is the discussion on campus and in the District? What is the discussion at other schools? Westwood? Richland Northeast? Spring Valley? Blythewood High? 

Which is the worst school, according to crime statistics? What kinds of crimes are happening at the different Richland Two schools? 

Where will the next violent crime occur?

Do any of the school have a list of "likely suspects" for the next crimes?

Maybe Richland Two schools should invite Curtis Sliwa to come to Columbia and explain how the Guardian Angels keep people safe.

Accused Stabber not in court or jail records

As of this morning, accused RVHS stabber, Tony Abrams' name cannot be found in the Richland County 5th Judicial Circuit Public Index or in the online inmate search for the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center

WIS-TV has reported that 17-year-old Abrams will be charged as an adult with Attempted Murder.

Is his name just not in the Public Index "yet"?

Why aren't his name and photo in the Jail record? Is he still in jail or did he bond out?

Media reporting is really shoddy. No mention of a bond hearing for him. No update today. No update on the two injured students.

And nothing on the Richland 2 website.

In a few days we'll wonder, "Did it really happen?"

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Wimpy statement at RVHS

This statement was copied from today about the stabbing at Ridge View High School.

Principal Mack’s letter read, in part, “Remind them that Ridge View is full of caring adults ready to help them resolve disagreements. Bringing weapons onto school property is never the answer. However, if your child makes the choice to do so, they will be recommended for expulsion and charged. We must all work together to keep Ridge View High a safe place for all of our students, employees and visitors.”

That is why violence will continue at RVHS and why students and parents will continue to be fearful. That message smacks of consideration and "consequences" and mealy-mouthed kumbaya. Tell those miscreants to straighten up or get out before they are thrown out.

Similar "nice" words were uttered toward the end of last night's school board meeting.

I'll tell you what's needed. We need one of those Florida sheriffs up here who will lay out exactly what will happen, when weapons are found or used on campus.

Lay it out straight and hard. 

Unfortunately, there is no one on the board who can speak with such force. If you can't, get someone else to speak for you.

Marq Claxton, R2's Director of Safety & Security, is a retired NYPD detective. The District should turn him loose to lay down the law. However, if you listened to him trying to be politically-correct at last week's Safety Committee meeting, you'll chalk him off.

The District should take the handcuffs off of Claxton and turn him loose.

The article included this: "Gregory wants the district to move forward with a plan for the implementation of metal detectors."

Well, she is the Interim Superintendent. She's in charge of safety and security. Maybe instead of blowing $1,000,000 on that Alert system, the District should have acquired more metal detectors.

Whose idea was it, anyway, to spend (waste) that money on that Alert system? 

RVHS Stabbing

So what really went on at Ridge View High School yesterday (4/25/2023), when a 17-year-old student stabbed two students and took off.

Local media carried very general reports. identified the student as Tony Abrams and reported that he is being charged as an adult and with attempted murder.

WIS seemed to have the most-complete coverage. It has not published a photo of Abrams or updated its story since yesterday at 11:16AM. However, it must have updated its story (but not its time of publication), because it reveals that deputies took Abrams into custody about 12:30PM.

The altercation is reported to have taken place in a hallway in the school. Is there a hallway video that shows the stabbing? Were any administrators or hall monitors in the hallway at the time? Who and how many?

What is the proper role of an administrator, hall monitor, teacher or other staff member who witnesses such an event? The natural tendency would be to intervene. But what employee wants to subject himself to be injured (or worse)? 

We don't pay school employees to expose themselves to injury or death. Should they just call for help and stand back? Should they grab a wooden chair and bash the head of the student with the knife? Will they get sued for doing so?

Did they have their new Alert badges? Did anyone remember to press the button three times (not eight)?

Is the RVHS principal capable of carrying out a warning threat to violent students that they are going to see the door swing one way, one time?

Are we going to tolerate violent behavior and actions in our schools? I say, NO. 

Home-schooling Mother gets it right

Check out this 3-minute remark by home-schooling mother of five, Katie Gage. (I hope I understood her name correctly.

Mrs. Page addressed the Richland 2 school board last night and hit the nail on the head. I wonder what impression she made on the board members.

Her remarks were directed at the celebration of LGBT in Richland 2 schools this week.

Go to and fast-forward to 38:13.

I agree whole-heartedly with her that this nonsense does not belong in public schools.

Thank you, Mrs. Gage!

Board Meetings: SEVEN hours 25 minutes

END 10:25PM


The Richland 2 school board met in Executive Session for the first 2½ hours.

Then the Regular Session began at about 5:30PM and quickly entered Executive Session 1. That one recessed at 6:30PM, and the Regular Meeting re-convened at 6:40PM.

Executive Session 2 began late in the evening and ended at 10:08PM.

When the Chair called for a Motion on the Parent Grievance that had been heard during Executive Session 2, NO ONE spoke up. SIX trustees remained silent.  Finally the Chair made the motion, and the vote was 7-0.

What was up with that? Were the other six trustees exhausted and unable to think or speak? 

The meeting adjourned at 10:25PM.

Total time for last night's meeting? From 3:00-10:25PM = SEVEN (7) hours 25 minutes.


Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Today's fight at Ridge View H.S.

Media are reporting a fight today at Ridge View High School (RVHS) that including stabbing of two students. The suspect, a 17-year-old high school student, fled and was later apprehended by RCSD.

Congratulations to the deputies for locating him quickly and grabbing him.

What's it going to take to put a stop to this nonsense? Does the Principal at RVHS have control?

Does she have a long list of students who are trouble-makers and who are likely to get in fights? Or who are bullies? Or who are using or selling drugs? Or is such a list against the DEI baloney so prevalent in Richland 2?

When she says, "Jump!", do the students ask "How high?" Or do they flip her off and keep doing what they are doing?

Do the administrators or teachers have any control?

Are the inmates running the asylum?

It is the mind-set that has to change. Then metal detectors won't be needed. SROs won't be needed.

Media reports indicate the kid will be charged as an adult. Then we should see his name and photo in the news.

Monday, April 24, 2023

Safety Committee Meeting - 4/17/23 - Maddening

I shall never get through the recording of that meeting!

I watched a few minutes of the meeting on April 17; and I have tried to watch more of it 2-3 times.

The Safety Committee is meddling in the arena that the Office of the Superintendent controls. Why?

Because they haven't learned to distinguish oversight from management. There are three trustees on the Committee and some others. As trustees of the board, their role is making decisions.

Not nit-picking the badge operation of the new Million-Dollar alert system.

Not trying to micro-manage the deployment of metal detectors. 

Not going to schools in other districts to learn how they use metal detectors and solve the manpower problem.

I made it to the 50-minute mark, and I'm done with it. I've never know what happened in the final 40 minutes.

How pervasive is DEI?

Read this article about Larry Arnn's talk at the Heritage Foundation’s 50th Anniversary Leadership Summit last Friday. Arnn is the president of Hillsdale College.

Arnn considers DEI programs as "massively destructive".

Now, what was announced by Richland 2 last Friday? 

"The Richland School District Two Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is inviting the public to attend a Community Conversation on the Importance of Inclusion in Schools and the Community. The event is taking place Wednesday, May 3 at 6 p.m. in the auditorium of the Richland Library Sandhills location at 763 Fashion Drive in Columbia."

Panelists will be Dr. Doyle Stevick, Executive Director of the University of South Carolina’s Anne Frank Center and professor in the College of Education; Katherine Webster, Blythewood High School student and member of the No Place For Hate Initiative; Ms. Maddie Coffman, teacher, Richland School District Two; and Mrs. Katinia Davis, Chief Special Education Officer, Richland School District Two. 

Will this be a "community conversation" or is the panel going to tell you what you must believe?

As parents, teachers, staff, and community members, are you interested in learning about the "importance" of Inclusion? In order to fight your (DEI) enemy effectively, you have to know the enemy. Here's one chance to do that.

Expect New Meeting Record

The Richland 2 school board will hold two meetings tomorrow. I expect a new record for meeting length.

The first meeting is a Special-Called Meeting. It starts at 3:00PM (Tuesday, April 25) and will likely consist only of an executive session. The listed topic is "Contractual Matter Regarding the Superintendent Search".

Personally, I doubt that description is sufficient to meet to requirements of the South Carolina FOIA Act. Exactly what is it about a "Contractual Matter" that they are going to discuss? Are they dealing with a search firm? Are they considering candidates? Are they about to offer employment? 

South Carolina Public Records Law is in the statutes at Title 30 Public Records, Chapter 4 Freedom of Information Act. Section 30-4-70 deals with matters that can be addressed in confidential Executive Sessions. 

§30-4-70(b) reads, in part, the Chair "...shall announce the specific purpose of the executive session. As used in this subsection, "specific purpose" means a description of the matter to be discussed..."

Merely announcing the topic may not be sufficient to announce the purpose of the Executive Session. What will they discuss for 2½ hours?

At 5:30PM the Regular Board Meeting is to start. The board will again enter Executive Session. Look at the length of the agenda for that executive session! Will the Regular Session re-convene at 6:30PM?

Next look at the agenda for the Regular Meeting! 

Will the Trustees recess for coffee? A comfort break? A nap?

The length of that agenda is absurd. When will the Board hire a public meeting consultant?

Sunday, April 16, 2023

Safety Committee - 4/17/23 - Livestream ADDED

I was looking for the agenda for Tuesday's Special-Called Board Meeting today when I found, instead, the agenda for the Safety Committee meeting scheduled for tomorrow, Monday, April 17, 6:00PM.

I have seen no other announcement of this meeting. Why hsn't there been one? 

It's not mentioned on the homepage of the school district. It is not posted on the District's April Calendar. Does the committee not want the public to know what's going on?

The only way to know what is going on is to show up AT committee meetings. Meetings of the Safety Committee are not live-streamed or fully reporting in any Minutes of the meetings. 

[Edited: 4/17/2023 Livestream has now been added!]

The agenda for the Special-Called Board Meeting on Tuesday must be published on the District's website by Monday, April 17, 4:30PM, if it is to meet the S.C. FOIA laws.

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Waiting for "Superman"

Just watched a great documentary released in 2010 titled "Waiting for 'Superman' ". Prominent in the story is Michelle Rhee, who was school chancellor in the Washington, DC schools from 2007-10. She then founded StudentsFirst, a political lobbying organization for school reform. This documentary was mentioned in Betsy DeVos' book, Hostages No More.

My copy came from Netfix DVD service. Amazon Prime has it for $3.99 (rental). Richland Library has it on its streaming service. Put your library card to good use.

The producers offered some "interesting" comments about tenure and the two national teachers' unions.

As I watched it, I found myself thinking of one particular, long-time teacher in the Richland Two schools, and I wondered what that teacher's Report Card would look like.

Sure glad the school board got a good cleansing last November. Two long-term "educators", as they often described themselves, are gone. 

There was a popular question when I was a salesman years ago. When a person said he had 35 or 40 years' experience, did he grow throughout that experience or did he really have one year of experience 35-40 times?

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Don't miss this video

This is a great PragerU video. Every student and parent in Richland Two should watch it and discuss it. 

A former BLM activist, he set out to debunk PragerU videos. Instead, he heard their real message and because a Conservative.

Imagine that!

Monday, April 10, 2023

Board Committee Reports

Both the Safety Committee and the Inspector General Recommendations Committee met on March 21, 2023.

It was my understanding the both committees would issue written statements (more complete than Minutes) of their meetings but, as of April 10th, no reports are published.

If and when they ever are published, they should be found on the District's website. Look under EXPLORE, then School Board, then COMMITTEE MINUTES, then click on the committee and meeting date that interests you.

The "Minutes" of the I.G Committee for January and February are worthless. They don't provide any information at all.

It is virtually impossible to find the names of the committee members on the District's website.

The I.G. Committee members are Trustees Washington, Porter, and Trapp.

The Safety Committee members are Trustees Nash, Scott, and McFadden, and also the Richland 2 Teacher of the Year, the Director of Safety (Marq Claxton), a RCSD deputy (Capt. Verlon Rhodes), two parents (McGee Moody and __?__), and two students.

School Safety Report (2018)

The Safety Committee of the Richland School District Two may already be aware of this Report from the Federal Commission on School Safety. It was issued on December 18, 2018, under the signatures of the Secretaries of Education, Homeland Security, Justice, and Health and Human Services.

May I urge you to save a copy as a .pdf on your computer (or, of course, you can print all 180 pages).

Here's the link:

This Report was transmitted to then-President Donald Trump.

You'll quickly note the red-lettered note at the top of each page that reads, "Some statements in this report do not reflect the current positions or policies of the Departments of Education, Homeland Security, Justice, or Health and Human Services." Those "current positions or policies" would be of the woke crowd in Joe Biden's cabinet.

Save this Report in its original form, before it disappears.

The Safety Committee does not have a meeting scheduled in April. Does this mean that all Richland 2 schools are now safe, as a result of the $1 Million spent on the new alert system?

Everybody is safe this week. (There is no school.)

School Choice - what is it?

What do you know about school choice?

Most reading this probably do know something about it. I suspect most readers here are parents, including teachers. 

I admit to being behind the curve. I have no children in school and no grandchildren in school. Sometimes, I am asked, "So why are you involved with the school district?"

I care about education. I prefer education to indoctrination. I believe parents make the choices for their kids, not the "government".

Watch this short video about School Choice. 

Sunday, April 9, 2023

Now Reading Betsy DeVos' book, Hostages No More

I'm not sure what steered me toward Betsy DeVos' book, Hostages No More. I'm glad I listened to the nudge.

Richland Library has the book. Yes, "the" book. One copy. Next time you're at the library, look at the trash they buy 3-4-5-6 copies of. Reserve it now; I'll be returning it on April 10-11.

This book should be a must-read for parents, teachers, staff of Richland Two. But it probably won't be. There will be those who ask, "Why ever would I want to read something by or about Betsy DeVos?"

Why? Because the mind is like a parachute. It works better when it's open.

I recall my reaction to the words of the MORE Justice group in 2018, when its members asked the school board for Richland 2 to back off from the "school-to-prison" pipeline. They wanted restorative justice. The board (at that time) and the former superintendent listened. Look where we are now. 

Many teachers dislike Mrs. DeVos and her ideas. My guess is they don't really understand her background or her positions. She was not a "go along to get along" person. They hear "DeVos" and they react like they do when they hear "Trump".

Read her book. Then decide.

This morning I came across NPR's Cory Turner's 11/19/2020 hit-piece on Betsy DeVos. I'm glad I read the book first. If Turner read the book, which was published in 2022, I wonder how he would re-write his article.

Friday, April 7, 2023

Richland 2 bus drivers. Encounter this?

Do Richland 2 bus drivers encounter unruly students?

How do they handle them?

Read this FoxNews article about Cleveland-area bus driver Jackie Miller.

How long would I last, if I were a bus driver? I'd set the rules the first day. After the kids were on the bus, I'd make an announcement, sort of like the one I heard on a plane one day.

The flight attendant announced, "Listen up. This is a small plane. If we go down, you are going to need to know what I am about to say." Everyone listened!

I'd announce that students are expected to remain in their seats and quiet. Use the time to study or nap. If there is any disruption, I intended to stop the bus. If it happened a second time, I would stop the bus and call the cops.

Drivers, what kind of problems, if any, do you experience?

If you fear retaliation for speaking out, email your comments to  Your name will not be published. Your comments may be edited to prevent your identification.

Wednesday, April 5, 2023

Metal Detector spots gun

How stupid do you have to be to take a pistol to Richland Northeast High School? And to take it through a metal detector?

A 17-year-old male student found out on Tuesday morning, April 4th. He was charged with "bringing a weapon on school property, unlawful carry of a weapon, and possession of a pistol under 18", according to WLTX-TV.

Charge him as an adult and release his photo and name. 

Where did education break down with that kid? While we, the public, will probably never know, did school administrators at  RNE already have him on their radar?

Who will be next?

Has Richland 2 ditched the BeSMART program yet? A lot of good it has done in the past 15 months!

Saturday, April 1, 2023

Is someone (important) leaving?

At the March 28, 2023 Regular board meeting, Agenda Item 5, the Consent Agenda, received considerable attention. Did the public understand why?

Had there been discussion during the Executive Session? There shouldn't have been, because that topic (the Consent Agenda) was not on the Executive Session agenda.

When it was time in public session to vote on Consent Agenda, Item 5.4 (Ratification of Personnel for the 2023-24 School Year) was removed.

This discussion begins in the meeting recording ( at 1:31:51. When Item 5 was called, Chair Agostini announced that Item 5.4 would be pulled for separate discussion.

How and when was that decided (out of public view)? Somebody should have made a motion for that to happen. Otherwise, some might think that something was going on behind the scenes that had to do with that Item. You mean, the Richland Two board do such a thing? The board that promised transparency?

The other items in the Consent Agenda were approved, and the Board returned to Item 5.4 for discussion and vote.

Trustee Porter moved to approve Employees 7 and 237. After the second, the Board approved.

Trustee Porter then moved to approve Employee 366. It wasn't clear why 366 was not included in the first Motion. The Board approved.

That splitting out was due to different trustees acknowledging a conflict of interest on those three employees.

Then Trustee Trapp moved to approve all the other employees EXCEPT #526, #542, #560, #578, and #1849. His motion was seconded and approved in a 6-0 vote.

How and when the the trustees gang up on those five employees?

Yesterday I learned who those five employees are. Four of them are senior administrative employees. 

My understanding is that at least four of them have three-year contracts. What does not ratifying these employees mean? 

Are their contracts ending and in need of renewal? If the contracts are not ending but are not ratified, what is the legal significance of that vote?

Even more importantly, why is the Board meddling in an employment decision that is fully in the hands of the superintendent? The board does, by law, get to say yea-or-nay on teacher hires, but administrative employees are hired and fired by the superintendent. I didn't hear the superintendent ask the board to make such a decision.

What did the Board learn on March 23rd during the presentation by Attorney Ashley Story about how a board functions? Did the Board weave out of its lane just five days later?