NBC4 News By Tracee Wilkins – Prince George’s County police are investigating after some students say they were threatened and told not to testify before the county’s board of education in a heated fight to save two alternative high schools from possible closure.
In the Prince George’s County School Board meeting Thursday night, dozens of students, staff and parents begged for two alternative high schools to stay open.
“I would hate to see other kids lose the opportunity I had,” student Mack Mauvais said.
In the proposed school budget, there’s a plan to close Tall Oaks and Community Based Classroom (CBC) – both alternative high schools. The school system would then redesign alternative education to include online learning, the creation of a northern and a southern alternative school, and an option for at risk students to return to traditional schools.
“At risk youth do not need so-called bigger and better programs,” CBC teacher Sarah Schauffler said. “They need smaller environments that cater to individual needs.”
Those in opposition have presented emotional testimony over the past two weeks.
Some CBC students say they received random calls threatening them to not testify. Jade Mason was one of them.
“She said do not speak at this Thursday’s meeting or any future budget meetings,” she said.
A report was filed with Prince George’s County police, and the incident is under investigation.
“But I will not be silenced,” Mason said. “To the woman who called, if you are here, you have only created more hopes for the future of CBC.”
“When I think about just the testimonies we’ve heard at the last two meetings, it has become abundantly clear to myself and my colleagues that the model at the Community Based Classroom has really worked,” Board member Shayla Adams-Stafford said.
Adams-Stafford is opposed to changing the alternative school structure, which currently boasts a more than 90% graduation rate.
“I’d actually like to see additional support given to these schools,” she said.
The principals of the two high schools proposed for closure filed suit against the school system in 2019 for unpaid wages.
“Both of those alternative schools happen to be my clients who are the principals, and we have a trial coming up in April,” attorney Mitchell Batt said. “Whether or not there is a causal connection between those two, I don’t know, but it’s certainly something that piques our interest and we’re looking into it.”
The Prince George’s County school system did not respond to News4’s requests for comment.
The board of education will vote on the final budget at the end of the month.
Via NBC 4 News
The whole thing is retaliation after Principals filed a lawsuit in circuit court in 2019. (See the attached complaint below). These two principals have a very corrupt lawyer called Mr. Mitch Butt who has been in bed with PGCPS and the Unions in Prince George’s county for the last 12 years. By closing down these schools, the lawsuit goes away as their employment is no longer there. The lawyer is also making money from both sides as he has always done. They expect these principals and the unsuspecting public not to know. I know this first hand because Attorney Mr. Mitch Butt sabotaged cases after being won on appeal. He did it willfully while working with other corrupt lawyers. In addition to appealing to the Board and other political players, parents, teachers and students should appeal to much higher powers to stop this public corruption driven by malicious intentions. We previously covered union and PGCPS shenanigan here and Attorney Mr. Mitch Butt is listed as part of the lawyers to be boycotted at the bottom of the page. (See BOYCOTT THESE LAW-FIRMS AND ORGANIZATIONS OPERATING IN MARYLAND INVOLVED IN MAJOR FRAUD)
When people experience corruption, it is rarely a positive experience. A bribe must be paid to receive attention. In Prince George’s county, judges led by the Chief Judge usually rule against a party, not based on the facts of the case, but because the opponent in many cases PGCPS and it’s union paid a bribe, knows a power broker, or comes from the same racial or ethnic background. Retirement funds are lost to fraudsters or tied up in a money-laundering scheme. While the victims of corruption suffer personal loss, intimidation and inconvenience, those who perpetrate corrupt acts and schemes tend to experience personal gain, a sense of superiority and greater convenience – pending enforcement of the law, that is.
Public and private sector dysfunctionality
The cumulative effect of individual corrupt acts is dysfunctionality. Whether offered by the public or private sectors, the quality of goods and services decrease, and the process of obtaining them becomes more expensive, time consuming and unfair. If bribes can successfully be offered to police, doctors, and civil servants, then those who are most successful at extracting these funds get ahead to the detriment of more honest colleagues and competitors who may perform better on merit.
Rigged economic and political systems
What is described as dysfunctional above is actually functional and profitable for corrupt actors. Whether falling under the label of political cronyism, crony capitalism, political party cartels, oligarchy, plutocracy and even kleptocracy, widespread patterns of private and public corruption construct social systems that are rigged in the private interest. Citizens with strong ethical principles (and citizens who lack significant funds, connections, favours to dispense, “hard power” over others such as guns or private enforcers) lose representation, influence and power.
Impunity and partial justice
When corruption pervades the justice system, people can no longer count on prosecutors and judges to do their jobs. The powerful may escape justice. And citizens, especially those with few resources or few powerful allies, may be unfairly accused of crimes, deprived of due process, and wrongly imprisoned. Resources on preventing corruption and strengthening integrity in the judiciary are available to the FBI which has the power to prosecute interconnected players such as in this case.