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Best Blog Orange County 2009 - Beyond the Blackboard

Everyone generally agrees that the students in Capistrano Unified School District are good kids; it's the parents and politicians who shoot spitballs. The South County school district has spent half of this decade immersed in "adult-centered" turmoil, stirred up by the alleged misdeeds of superintendent James Fleming (who should be heading to trial any day now) and only made more frothy last year by the election of a board of trustees proclaiming "reform." Personality conflicts, misused funds, statewide budget panic and lingering suspicions that the district's new regime consists of evangelical anti-public-school saboteurs—all these things make the Capistrano Dispatch's Beyond the Blackboard blog reading material that calls for popcorn. Dispatch editor Jonathan Volzke serves up a near-daily dose of gossipy tidbits, connect-the-dots ruminations, unearthed public documents and live updates from the district's marathon board meetings. Extra credit goes to anyone who can identify the trustees, PTA moms and teachers of the year who bicker anonymously in the comments and turn each blog item into a sandbox for grown-ups acting like bullies.
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mdrummond
mdrummond

Reformers aren't the angry ones, the union mob and other agitators who continue to stir things up are the angry ones as they have proved at school board meetings where they tried to shut the new board down with their uncivil behavior to excuse fraud and theft from the taxpayers to protect one of their unethical own. No, reformers are not angry, they're rightfully disgusted. By covering up fraud, like in the case of fired former Spt. Carter, and the "adult-centered" political games currently being played by old guard supporters to substantially disenfranchise the district's voters, all Volzke does is enable this garbage. If you want anger, just go to Volzke's Blackboard that panders to the irrational ravings and anger of special interests and the shrill enemies of reform. These are the angry ones who have spit in the face of the voters and who remain one of the biggest "spitball" problem in the district.

Charles
Charles

Beyond the Blackboard must be doing it's job "pushing the buttons" of the angry agitators. These hysterically defensive posts are typical of the bullies who are trying to hijack our top-performing school district. Read the truth for yourselves at Beyond the Blackboard.

mdrummond
mdrummond

Nice try, pm, and "Good Loard" back atcha. Your points work only if you ignore the twenty years of old guard Fleming era corruption that abused students and taxpayers and nearly bankrupted the district before the new trustees took over, the multi-billion dollar state budget crisis that the new trustees walked into, and the declaration of war the union and its special interest friends inside the district declared against them almost the very day they took over - the main reason for the continuing disruption in the district and the reasons Volzke continues to ignore. It's nice to push the reset button and ignore history and the real issues to make your point, but that kind of comment should be saved for Beyond the Blackboard where it belongs.

Boardwatcher
Boardwatcher

Good lord, ronnie and Marie! The entire district's been turned upside down in the last two years -- replaced, reduced, restructured, recalled and relinquished to your "reform" effort. Move on from the past and start addressing the problems "reform" has created. New readers, welcome -- the truth is at Beyond the Blackboard. And, obviously, the truth makes these two angry.

Marie
Marie

If you're one of the union or staff special interest types or one the co-opted, PTA suck ups at CUSD, and couldn't give a rat's behind about the unethical and illegal behavior by CUSD that has screwed the kids, parents and taxpayers for years, then Beyond the Blackboard is for you. For years, Jonathan Volzke has shamelessly served up the Kool Aid, pandering self-serving special interests and district apologists who just can't get enough of Volzke's and their own spitball fighting that has kept this district in the dark and in turmoil, rather than dealing with legitimate concerns about well-known corruption straight up that would actually help the kids -- concerns that were uncovered by parents who were concerned about their children's education; concerns that were confirmed by the OC grand jury, the OC DA and other investigations, repeatedly; concerns that were exposed in spite of the dishonest attacks by special interests and distractions like Beyond the Blackboard that has yet to see any district corruption it couldn't excuse or defend.

ronnie
ronnie

It sounds nice to relegate legitimate concerns over financial waste and corruption to throwing spit balls and adult-centered fights, but these legitimate concerns are at the heart of years of district failures that cheated the kids for years. Volzke is as partisan as the status quo corruption apologists who populate his ridiculous blog with the most uninformed and biased garbage around. Volzke has been part of the problem for a long time, conspicuously covering up some of the most egregious offenses by the corrupt creeps at CUSD. Beyond the Blackboard may be good entertainment, but it certainly isn't a good source of information when it comes to the important issues at CUSD - that is, unless you want those issues skewed in ways that would make the New York Times blush.

The Pot Stirrer
The Pot Stirrer

Congrats to Johnathan Volzke and his crew for this much deserved recognition. Their blog, along with the newspapers they publish, provide a great service to the South County readers. This is a much better choice than last year's selection - some old guy in Costa Mesa who tries to do it all himself. Wait a minute! That's me! Oh, well...

Teachers are Under Fire
Teachers are Under Fire

If you want to know what your local school board is up to, bookmark this blog and sign up for alerts when new articles are posted. It's an education in itself!

Jenny Jung
Jenny Jung

The cry baby politics in this district by all sides in the political arena has made it vary difficult to make this large scale orginization improve the education of children and advance in improvements to facilities.

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