After a Long Week, Dallas ISD Trustee Edwin Flores Sends an Open Letter of Apology

FloresSignature.jpg
Below is a missive just dispatched to Unfair Park: Dallas Independent School District trustee Edwin Flores's "Open Letter of Apology" -- to Central Elementary fourth-grade bilingual teacher Joseph Drake, who was put on leave after he sent Flores a fist-shaking letter concerning 45 minutes added to teachers' workdays, and to teachers and supporters who believe Flores overreacted by forwarding that letter to district higher-ups. The letter speaks for itself.

"I feel very bad about it," Flores tells Unfair Park, and by "it," he means the very public blow-up that followed his decision to send Drake's letter up the chain of command. "I certainly had no expectation it would turn into what it turned into. But as soon as the process begins in a public entity [like the DISD], there's nothing you can do or say after that." The apology, he says, is "the polite and honorable thing to do."

It was sent separately to Drake, Flores says. "And I've offered to meet with him in private. If he doesn't want to, I understand." DISD Trustee Edwin Flores's Open Letter of Apology

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36 comments
Diane Birdwell
Diane Birdwell

Wow, and people say I talk a lot.... Two pages to say he messed up.

Media says the two will meet. Man, I wish I ws the waitress at that place when it happens.

Atonement is called for: I think he should bring back this 45 minutes fiasco for another look-see. NO clear guidance was given about this measure. NO advance warning to teachers, who do have lives you know, about this. NO input, that I am aware of, from teachers. I would love an extra 45 minutes per week IN FRONT OF MY STUDENTS. What is needed is NOT more time to fill out yet more paperwork for more people trying to justify jobs and policies, but MORE time with reading, projects, heck----just trying to stay caught up with ridiculous pacing schedules called CPG's!!!

If he in sincere in his apology, let his actions now represent them. Rescind this decision at the next meeting.

And in case his quote's effect on us is STILL beyond his grasp, let me explain:THANK YOU. I want to work "only" 8 hours. I worked 9 today. I worked through my lunch. I worked on homework last night. He says he knows the great teachers work many more. So, we get help by having to spend more time doing what, exactly? Who ASKED for this, BTW?  Next time, why not ask US what we need? The highly-paid ones in front of you at those meetings? Ask them if they have EVER taught a TAKS tested subject. Go ahead, ask. See what the answers are. NONE of them know what we have to do, the pressure we feel, the frustrations we get in dealing with yet more paperwork, more tasks.....

The Credible Hulk
The Credible Hulk

Good try, Eddie, but you could have saved about 500 words and just said: "I'm Sorry for being an asshole, Mr. Drake and DISD teachers."

Now that would have been an apology. 

Perry Moore
Perry Moore

Enough is enough. Ladies and gentlemen, you aren't going to get a better apology than this from any attorney. Continue your assault on the offensive school board policy, but move on from the name-calling. Mr. Drake got his 15 minutes, and Mr. Flores deserves no more.

Heywood U Buzzoff
Heywood U Buzzoff

Flores is a lawyer and a I guess a very poor one to say "I certainly had no expectation it would turn into what it turned into. But as soon as the process begins in a public entity [like the DISD], there's nothing you can do or say after that." The apology, he says, is "the polite and honorable thing to do."  This is proof that as PhD and a JD, he is a dumb as a box of hammers.

His fellow board members should ask him to resign and go away after leaving some piles of cash for Mr. Drake not to sue the %$#@ out of the DISD for abusing his civil rights.

Steve
Steve

He's still a pig

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

Wow, revisionist history from the mouth of an ambulance chaser. Instead of being a peacemaker, he's made himself look worse. He needs to be excused from his position...

JM
JM

Flores uses an ellipse to make his quotation more accurate? An ellipse is supposed to stand in for redundant words, and its use should never change the meaning of the quotation. The quote above means a lot more with the original words added "we're going to get 8 hours."

Joe L
Joe L

It looks like it might be time for Mr. Flores to move on. I remember seeing him when he was first running.  He did seem pompous/narcissistic and ethnocentric enough to be obsessed with making all students in Dallas learn Spanish whether they were Hispanic or not.

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

Imagine if you have made a donation to Flores' campaign.You're now a supporter of one of the most reviled people in Dallas.

You're a supporter of a man who is tied to a teacher being put on leave for merely speaking his mind to an elected official.

You're a supporter of a man who treats teachers like peons with the whole we're-gonna-get-8-hours thing  (thank you, btw, bc the 9-10 hour days were wearing me out).

And now you're a supporter of a man who writes this and calls it an "apology"?

150,000 children in DISD deserve better.

Bbetzen
Bbetzen

We must not loose our focus. Mr. Drake and thousands of others are angry due to the DISD Board vote to mandate 45 additional “on the clock” minutes for every teacher's daily schedule.Dallas ISD blinked! A severe lack of administrative focus on student achievement has been exposed! Who is more focused on a student's achievement than their teacher, and hopefully their parents? The DISD administration didn't even have a goal focused position statement about this dramatic policy change before the DISD Board voted on it! Such a statement must still be written! Then is should be posted on a blog, and open to the public for comments! The DISD Board should then give convincing public evidence that they have read the comments received before they vote again on this very consequential policy.Student achievement is the primary goal. With this tragic change some of the freedom teachers have had to focus their time most effectively on student achievement will be lost.Only one of the board members who supported this ill advised change (Bingham, Blackburn, Cowan, Flores, Morath) needs to change their vote for this agony to end.  If any of these members are your board members please contact them.  Here is the contact information: http://www.dallasisd.org/domai...

Dallashomeowner
Dallashomeowner

We've had some contact with Mr. Flores on the matter of schools being built in our neighborhood, when we already have two schools within a mile of our house.  We were concerned about the unsafe traffic conditions for kids and the wisdom of building this school at a time when we're closing 11 schools.  He was evidently more concerned about spending the bond money at his disposal than the thoughts of the folks who'd called this area home for decades. Flores was condescending and entirely dismissive.  Instead of serving the citizens and students of DISD, he considers them annoyances and speedbumps on his smug journey to the big dollars in school administration/mismanagement.

Guest
Guest

Great teachers work a whole lot more than that.

That doesn't really make it any better. Seems to me he's saying that there shouldn't be any complaints from teachers about extending the school day because if they were any good, they'd already be putting in that extra time.

And by the by, being a leader means not making excuses for your bullshit actions.

Joyce Foreman
Joyce Foreman

That is not an apology.  Flores has been such a jerk for years and it finally caught up with him.  Flores, on this test  your grade is F.  You may try again, but this time I want you to really mean what you say.

Thank you to Mr. Drake and all of the other teachers who stay with DISD inspite of the disfunctional board.

Bmarvel
Bmarvel

What is it that turns ordinarily sensible human beings into buffoons, bumblers and creeps the instant they become administrators or bureaucrats? I suppose someone out there will argue that they were buffoons, bumblers and creeps before they were appointed bureaucrats, that in fact this is the reason WHY they were appointed bureaucrats. That the system seeks out and rewards such people.I don't think so. That assumes that we non-bureaucrats are necessarily different from them, a notion that may comfort us but does not stand up to the reality test. Any one of us can turn into a dork, given a promotion and  little authority over others. I met a former boss, now long retired, not so long ago. He was an ordinary, pleasant human being once again. As though he had awakened from a dream. I know enough about myself to guess I wouldn't want to work under me if I were given a little power. Public "servants", by the way - for those of you who rail against government -- are no more bone-headed than those in charge of private enterprise. (This is a myth perpetrated by the right.)An argument, perhaps, for frequently turning the soil, and turning out all bosses, administrators, trustees, and board members.    

Cliffhanger
Cliffhanger

Flores is certainly sorry, but he doesn't apologize.

Bettyculbreath
Bettyculbreath

The polite thing to do says it all, he does not mean one word of apology.

LaceyB
LaceyB

Reminds me of when my new mini-beagle puppy gets caught chewing on whatever. When he gets picked up by his scruff and hangs like spaghetti, you can tell he is sooo not sorry he was chewing, just sorry he got caught. Only you actually eventually feel sorry and forgive the mini-beagle.

Paul
Paul

What a bloviating obfuscator ... It took him three paragraphs to get to the half a$$ed apology ...  He never admits that what he did was wrong and then tries to deflect it off with other simultaneous events as being the reason for his actions ...

I don't care what the context is for "If we are paying for eight hours, we are going to get eight hours ..." notwithstanding anything that follows comes across as a management technique straight from a sweatshop.

As far as the next election is concerned, if a dead possum is running against the incumbent trustee, I will vote for the dead possum.

biscuit98
biscuit98

This attempt to get his voting base together for the May elections falls way short.

See, the narcissistic windbag who has spent his entire time on the board smirking at teachers, toting water for Dallas Achieves Nothing, Broad, TFA, and the Citizen's Council has at least been consistent. His private comments consistently denigrate teachers. His public demeanor with a big, smart ass smirk demonstrates how little he thinks of the common folks who gather for board meetings.

This letter is nothing but a response to Edwin finally catching hell for his sophomoric crap. Good luck and hopes for lots of money for the campaign chest of his opponent. Edwin should have lost last time with his DISD produced campaign literature that was filled with lies about district progress.

This is the fool who called the bigger fool, Hinojosa, "a rock star." Remember that lying superintendent who said he intended to stay in Dallas while he was looking for a hole to crawl into as fast as possible? The one who used Edwin's friend who was existing on taxpayer money for poor kids and used his position to get Hinojosa's kid into Harvard?

Lies, lies, and more damned lies.

DowntownAndOut
DowntownAndOut

I assume various media outlets have made FOI requests for the email that Flores wrote when forwarding to "administration."

Pamela Irwin
Pamela Irwin

So why is this being called an apology? There's only a vague hint of an apology hidden deep within Flores' whining, defensiveness, & excuses. That he would call this self-serving piece of tripe an apology shows just how narcissistic & out of touch Flores is! What a jerk!

Its So Sad
Its So Sad

The extra 45 minutes is for you (and the rest of us) to tutor your students after school, without the supplemental tutoring pay. All of the rest of your volunteered time is appreciated, expected and un-compensated.

ALSO:

Notice that no one is talking about next year's "Flex Time" calendar now?

Teacher in the OC
Teacher in the OC

That's where you're wrong, Perry. Mr. Drake -- and all of his fellow teachers, including myself -- got 45 minutes. With no pay raise. On top of all the off-clock time we already devote to our jobs. For which this teacher takes home all of $2650/month. That's 45, not 15, for those playing the home game. Which more and more teachers will now do, thanks to Flores and his snarky yap and yes vote.

Ladybug
Ladybug

All the teachers I know treat their job as a profession and work so much longer than 8 hours spending their own money on things for their kids and their classrooms; but the trustees prefer to treat us like hourly workers, and have everything documented whether it makes any educational or functional sense or not. Because the principals are held responsible for their teacher's compliance, at one school a few years ago, the teachers had to all clock out by a certain time so an office worker could verify the list & report back to the principal before she left. Whether they were ready to leave or not, all teachers had to stop whatever they were doing to march down to the office, from all over the campus and stand in line while each one "thumbed out" on the electronic clock that often froze.  That process could take 20 minutes or more while 95 teachers clocked out every evening!  What a complete waste of time, and insulting to boot, after spending your "lunch" tutoring, helping with homework or holding kids in detention, and will still have more papers to grade and lessons to prepare.  If you had after-school students waiting for you, they were gone by the time you got back to the classroom.We do need the Trustees to hold the District accountable by asking the right questions of (& demanding answers from) the administration like "Why does the District have an in-house Alternative Certification program when this is available at Region 10, DCCCD, SMU, UTA and many more, including online?  And how much does it cost to administer this program (instructors, facilities & staff, full salaries for those in the program, etc.)?"; instead of micromanaging teacher's time.

heyheymama
heyheymama

Does this guy do anything to actually serve his District 13 constituents?  The DISD was not meeting our child's educational needs, despite specific policies in place to handle this situation.  Our principal chose not to implement those policies at our elementary school, because they were too difficult.So I contacted my trustee (that would be Edwin) to get advice.His response:  Kumon after school.  Nothing about how to lobby DISD administration to bring this principal into policy compliance. 

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

This comment is so charming.

I've been wondering what the mini-beagle's name is...

Cliffhanger
Cliffhanger

Not to mention the tax money Edwin has either lost track of or handed out to his buddies. This goes way beyond 15 minutes, especially for the kids DISD is failing thanks to Edwin and his rock star.

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

Would the teachers not close the gap for you?

I will move mountains if the parent lets me know what they need.

As a mom, I can generally figure out what the child probably needs, but if I were to miss something, a request from a parent is never ignored.

Most teachers I know will do anything asked.  That's why we're teachers....we're here to help you.

DISD bends over backwards not to serve the needs of students.  Not the staff, of course, just the people at 3700.  Too expensive they say.

LaceyB
LaceyB

Why, thank you ms DISD. And thank you for your service in being a real teacher. I was just a sub. You guys got it rough--keep fighting.

My mini-beagle, currently 4 mos., is named Ollie. He lost his first "baby tooth" today. But...still chewing. And not sorry.

heyheymama
heyheymama

Thank you kindly for asking.  My sister, my sister-in-law, and all my aunts are teachers;  my niece is on her way to becoming a teacher.  I'm a public school graduate.  What you say about teachers is nearly always true, in my experience, which made this all the more difficult and disappointing.

I hesitate to write about my son's issue.  I found it to be a conversation killer.  But what the heck, here goes:  what to do about the child who is working 1 or 2 grades-levels above the standardized elementary curriculum? 

No one wanted to help a little boy who was crying not to go back to school because he was bored to the point that it was painful to sit through hours of material he already knew, 5 days a week.

His 1st and 2nd grade teachers said their hands were tied.  TAG was a 1-hr per week band-aid.  TAG Magnets are not available until 4th grade; the handful of openings at the Montessori magnets are by lottery. 

We learned that the DISD had a policy of 3-level differentiation in the Gen Ed classroom.  The teachers would not differentiate.  The principal said her teachers would not be differentiating because it was too much work.  Edwin said that though differentiation was the policy, principals had the flexibility to disregard it and 3700 Ross could not overrule the principal.  That's when he told me to send my child to Kumon afterschool. 

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

And I feel the same way about the worst kids.  You eventually feel sorry for them and find yourself babying them.  It's crazy.

As for teaching:  It's a million times easier than being a sub.  You all let us stay home when we are sick without worrying that our 7th period (or whatever) will set the building on fire and we'll get the axe for not warning people about our 7th period.

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

Baby Ollie!  How adorable.

I think if we were allowed to have puppies and dogs roaming around the campus, the kids would like school better.  Even the thuggiest thugs show kindness to animals; it's innate and uplifting to every soul.

Check out The Art of Raising a Puppy by the Monks of New Skeete.  Great book.  

Enjoy Ollie.  He will be all grown up too soon.

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