DISD: Some at Ebby Halliday Elementary Used "Inappropriate Means to Instill Discipline"

Ebby Halliday Background V 3.0.jpg
Speaking of the Dallas Independent School District's doings ...

No doubt you recall the ugly allegations that came out of Ebby Halliday Elementary School in the fall, stories of abuse and intimidation that resulted in principal Kamalia Cotton going to another campus (Phillis Wheatley Elementary School) while furious parents demanded explanations from a mostly mum 3700 Ross. As Tawnell Hobbs wrote when summing up the wrongdoing on the southeast Dallas campus: "The allegations are numerous and include students being physically abused, parents not being allowed in the school, and students threatened with calls to immigration officials if they complained." The district said it would investigate, absolutely.

And it has, according to a release just dispatched to media in advance of the release of the investigation -- or, at least, pieces of it. And, yes, says the DISD, bad things did happen at Ebby Halliday.
The investigation, conducted by the district's Office of Professional Responsibility, determined that some staff used inappropriate means to instill discipline at the school and did not properly report suspected child abuse. While some initial allegations proved to be true, several others were unsubstantiated. As a result of the findings, staff at Halliday Elementary are being directed to attend training on child abuse reporting requirements, proper disciplinary methods and effective classroom management.
DISD says it spent 500 hours documenting the doings at Ebby Halliday while looking into the actions of 22 employees. Says the district: "Three have been suspended for three days without pay, seven have received reprimands, and ten received a letter of concern with directives." Some of what occurred, says the report, stemmed from school administrators not speaking Spanish, "which contributed to their inability to communicate directly with some of the parents of students [which] led to confusion, hostility and distrust." Interim superintendent Alan King calls the whole thing "regrettable" in the release that follows.

The only portion of the investigation being released today involves an off-site staff retreat, organized by Cotton, at the enormous entertainment venue Main Event, which resulted in staffers missing mandatory child-abuse reporting training. A much larger chunk of the OPR investigation, dealing with the allegations of child abuse, has been sent to the Texas Attorney General's Office; we'll see in a couple of weeks whether the Greg Abbott's office lets it see the light of day. Till then, what DISD can say follows.
DALLAS ISD COMPLETES INVESTIGATION OF ALLEGATIONS MADE AT EBBY HALLIDAY ELEMENTARY

District Exploring Options to Train Staff on Issues of Diversity and Cultural Differences

DALLAS-The Dallas Independent School District has completed an extensive investigation of allegations made this past fall at Ebby Halliday Elementary School.

The investigation, conducted by the district's Office of Professional Responsibility, determined that some staff used inappropriate means to instill discipline at the school and did not properly report suspected child abuse. While some initial allegations proved to be true, several others were unsubstantiated.

As a result of the findings, staff at Halliday Elementary are being directed to attend training on child abuse reporting requirements, proper disciplinary methods and effective classroom management.

"The actions that took place at Ebby Halliday Elementary School this past fall are regrettable," said Dallas ISD Interim Superintendent Alan King. "Our goal is to ensure that incidents such as these do not happen at any district campus."

In addition to Halliday Elementary School staff receiving training, the district is in the process of exploring various options available to train district staff on the important issues of diversity and cultural differences.

One of the investigation's findings indicated that administrators at the school did not speak Spanish, which contributed to their inability to communicate directly with some of the parents of students. This led to confusion, hostility and distrust in the Halliday Elementary community. This in turn led to many of the allegations against Dallas ISD employees in the OPR report.

"There is an expectation that a positive school climate exist on every Dallas ISD campus," said King. "We also expect our campuses to be inviting and accessible to parents within reason."

A portion of the OPR investigation was released today in compliance with an Open Records request from various media outlets. Because the investigation covered sensitive issues related to suspected child abuse reporting, the full OPR report has been sent to the Attorney General for counsel on what can legally be released. A determination is expected in the next couple of weeks.

The initial portion of the report released today centers on a staff retreat taken to an off-site location prior to the beginning of the school year. The attendance at the retreat caused staff at Halliday Elementary to miss a scheduled mandatory training on how to report suspected child abuse.

Because of the numerous legal issues involved, individual personnel action taken as a result of the findings cannot be shared. All professional employees of the Dallas Independent School District are entitled to very detailed statutory protections set out in Chapter 21 of the Texas Education Code. The procedures set out in law ensure that Chapter 21 employees may not be subject to personnel action unless there is very strong evidence supporting such action.

Of the 22 employees investigated, three have been suspended for three days without pay, seven have received reprimands, and ten received a letter of concern with directives.

The investigation into allegations at Halliday was one of the most detailed ever conducted by the district's Office of Professional Responsibility. The investigation took more than 500 hours over the course of 100 days and included interviews with more than 80 witnesses, as well as more than 100 exhibits.

"We would like to thank the parents, students and the staff at Ebby Halliday Elementary School, as well as Ms. Halliday and her family, for their patience throughout this process," said King. "We are especially grateful that the vast majority of this school year at Halliday Elementary has been trouble-free and seems to be doing well."
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19 comments
Karebearbriggs
Karebearbriggs

You need to ck into some abuse allegations at Bryan Adams HS too.. 

Mr. Fuck You
Mr. Fuck You

First things first:

     1.) Some staff were reprimanded for the findings of inappropriate disciplines. However, we now know that as some allegations may have been true, then that means that some WERE NOT. What about those parents who falsely accused? are they getting suspended? reprimanded? or retrained? No, of course not, they act, accuse, allege with complete impunity. So does the media, I mean not that the media actually "reported"m or investigated, NO all they did is sensationalize the situation, sell papers, ruin lives and move on.

2)  Apparently some of the problem was that the principal did not speak spanish, oh Ok. Well how about this: does the superintendent speak spanish? does the board? (which by the way is composed of 5 whites, 2 hispanic, and 2 african americans that "represent" a 70 percent hispanic sudent budy and 29 percent african american but LULAC does'nt seem to care!!) I gues we should replace them alos, I mean in the name of fairness, right? just to avoid any miscomunication.

3) Bea Martinez, LULAC's deputy, calls for Mrs. Cotton to step down. Surely she'll call for every board member that doesn't speak spanish to do the same. An how about this for kickers? LULAC suppodsely represent the hispanic community, well guess what? the teacher reprimended, suspended are lations. One teacher, who by the way was not even accused of a darn thing, felt she had to redue to the pressure, and yes she was lation. So I guess LAULAC and this Bea  MArtinez really only represent the latinos that make for good news not lations in general.

4) 500 man hours of tax payer money to tell us what CPS found out in about a week. Yes that's right, Child Protective Services also investigated the matter and concluded the SAME DARN THING!!!!!!!! Yep one week and CPS, which of course as you know is thourough egancy, said: there ain't nothing here. 

5) Now some one said it's hard to believe that kids would make this up. THat's entirely true kids did'nt make this up,the parents did. and why shoudnt they?, they didnt like the discipline nor the the principle because she was as they put it "una negra" , so they complained and acted with complete impunity. ANd of course should you look this up, had this suposed reporters actually investigated they would've found out that these same parents have done this before, that the kids were wanting to commit suicide last year. Oh yeah that's right, They've actually used their kidsa to threaten the african-american staff which they do not like. (and called the staff racisst)

6)n lastly, shame on you Dallas observer, Shame!! I expected these kind of crap from channel five, univision, channel 8, I mean those crappy sensationalist show that are just trying to sell a freaking paper, buyty you the DAllas Observer 'the independent voice", what the f happened? next time you'd like to report something, TAKE THE TIME TO REPORT.

LAst things last:

P.S. mispelling, grammar errors due to PISSED OFFEDNESS. (sorry)

P.S. and if no one answers your call if because your the kind of "news" that "don't let the facts in the way of a good story", We'll however be talking to NPR, an actual news outlet.

OC Banshee
OC Banshee

"The only portion of the investigation being released today involves an off-site staff retreat, organized by Cotton, at the enormous entertainment venue Main Event"Has anyone asked about the retreat? Was this a party hosted by Cotton or the taxpayers? Was it a workshop on a different topic? Again paid how? Could this not have been done at a local community room or in Room 105? If paid with my tax dollars, did they not get the memo on budget crisis? Are those P-cards still out there?

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

Taxpayers definitely paid for the Main Event event and we will all pay for the Redtails field trip, too.

My school did the training in the auditorium of the school.

P-cards are not still out there, but there are definitely other ways to pillage the system for money and the P-card thieves have merely switched to those methods.

Shirley Ison Newsome needs to go, but for some reason, neither the admin nor the trustees will hold her accountable.  

LL
LL

I am not sure we got the whole story.  A friend with firsthand knowledge says it wasn't exactly as portrayed.  Do we ever get the whole story?  I personally was a bit skeptical when it became a cause celebre for certain inidividuals who always seem to show up when they can get themselves on TV.

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

And, btw, Kamalia Cotton, reported goddaughter of Shirley Ison Newsome, is merely going to be reassigned to a 3rd elementary school?  Why is that after all this wrongdoing went on?  Is it bc she is protected by Shirley?

DISD trustees and Dallas as a whole will continue to suffer if they don't man up and get rid of Shirley.

This 1 person reveals the system that is tolerating her.  If the system doesn't change, DISD cannot improve.

Albert
Albert

"...administrators at the school did not speak Spanish,"

How on Earth can this happen in the school system of a Hispanic city?

Sanders Kaufman
Sanders Kaufman

You can't TRAIN racists to not be racists anymore.There's no seminar, church or god that can fix them.And the fact that they did this to KIDS makes them even worse.

They're broken and they should be thrown away... like garbage.

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

The sad part about this whole deal is many of these educators/admin involved are angry that hard working and family oriented hispanics are moving in on their "hood". Many wont say it, but the african-american community in Dallas is running scared that this city is becoming a latino minority-majority city. They're afraid that they'll lose their place at the pitty-party table they've created for themselves. I have one thing to say about that: They have to blame themselves for their own stupidity, especially when it involves school children..

Omar Jimenez
Omar Jimenez

Since this school is almost in my neck of the woods, let me tell you after living there for about 15 years, things have changed in that area. My family was basically the only "Mexicans" living in my neighborhood. I say when I was at Kleberg Elementary about 10 years ago, the "hispaincs" really started to move there and we had the White Flight happen and as well as Seagoville Middle and High Schools were starting to get bad, and thankfully I didn't have to deal with thoses schools and went off to a better place. Remember back in Redistricting about the Black-Brown Flight we had? And the Black Council Members were crying about losing a seat because Black people moved off to better places? The only way it was going to be 4 seats there was to Gerrymander and the map now I'm kinda happy with. No one seems to relized the growth that has happend over theses years and the Hispainc Growth has been a plus and thats why so many of the new schools are being bulit here in the Grove, Balch Springs, and in Seagoville.

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

You are 100% correct.This situation--along with the $60,000 field trip--is all about race and the free pass it demands.There is a hatred of Hispanics among a certain sector of DISD executive directors and their lieutenants on the campuses (in the form of teachers and principals).  Incompetent principals and teachers among this sector are almost never fired.For decades, this same group has gotten away with whatever they want to do:  P-card theft, expensive venues for "trainings" that never happen, promoting their "goddaughters" to principal posts, and a proud disregard for taxpayers and laws.

The Citizens' Council puppets are busy playing for power and influence and their own share of the tax-dollar pie, so they certainly aren't going to take this group on.

The kids are adrift at the mercy of adults.People go to their mega-churches and never give the DISD kids another thought.City Council members never rally for better DISD management bc it wouldn't put a penny in their pockets.

I'm so glad this was exposed at Halliday.  

Guest
Guest

Interim superintendent Alan King calls the whole thing "regrettable" in the release that follows.

He then said: "The banks have a new image. Now you have "a friend." Your friendly banker. If the banks are so friendly, how come they chain down the pens?" 

Ed D.
Ed D.

Dear God, not a "a letter of concern with directives"! Oh, the humanity!

DISD Teacher
DISD Teacher

They should have all gotten a letter advising them that their contract for next year was "non-renewed".  Those letters went out 2 weeks ago or so.

But I'd bet money none of them get non-renewed.  The race games will protect them at the expense of the kids.  The good parents--the kind you want in a district--will continue to flee to escape the system.

Bettyculbreath
Bettyculbreath

Most Black teachers are already gone, what race game do you mean,only reason all Blacks not gone DISD can not find enough educated Hispanics to fill jobs.Blacks were never treated fairly, and were over educated most have masters and earned PHD's just to teach.Black teachers and soon White teachers will be a thing of the past so only race game in this Town is Hispanic and maybe an Asian or two.

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

I tell ya, when it rains it pours w/ this district. Counting down till the state takes over...

DuckDuckGoose
DuckDuckGoose

 " ... as well as Ms. Halliday and her family ..." Counting down until they demand the school be renamed the John Wiley Price Elementary

Max from the Sandspit
Max from the Sandspit

Nahh rename it after the Medrano Clan whom by the way are in a courtroom rolling on each other in a voter fraud trial. Not shocked that the libtards at the Observor are not covering that story.

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