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Saturday, March 17, 2018

So Many Things....

 This morning I cannot decide what to write about...  A beloved transgender student--accepted by her parents as she transitioned from Eric to Hope? My sadness at a beautiful life lost?  My confusion?  Why, with her parents' support, would she choose to end her life now?  Just months from high school graduation?  Accepted by thirteen colleges?  Why? There had to be other issues at play.  Depression?  Anxiety?  Parents' divorce?

Or might I write about my Florida International University freshman--my daughter--and her obtuse text: "I'm alive."? I'd not yet heard of the pedestrian bridge collapse. Might I write of the inner drop at the knowledge that she often drives that very road?   That it all feels so random?  That waiting at a traffic light was a death sentence for six? Might I write of the horror of more anguished waiting?  For there are six grieving families connected to six bodies still covered in Tamiami Trail rubble...

Or shall I write today of the silliness of Florida's "Best and Brightest"?  I am not one of the best and brightest.  Having earned an effective instead of a highly effective evaluation this year, I am one of the "Kinda Good and Sorta Lackluster" sigh heaving educators who receive $800 instead of $1,200.

Ah, now that strikes the "Kym (Kim with attitude) Kord". Although I received a perfect evaluation by my school principal for the work I do at my school,  I did not receive enough points from my evaluated children's test scores to achieve highly effective status.  That might have been a blow to my fragile ego if this counselor's "core and non-core" evaluation weren't so clearly and immorally stupid.  

Did I just write stupid?  Why, I hardly ever choose that word!  I most often choose synonyms like foolish.  Naive.  But a "core and non-core" counselor evaluation on 23 FSA math scores is just plain (more synonyms) imbecilic and ignorant.  Just plain corrupt to keep that money outta this hardworking gal's pockets!  Why, I'd have paid to have my roof pressure washed!  Now, Florida legislature, I'll have to live with the mold a while longer.  

Oh Lordy, I think that's funny!  I might as well hold you accountable for my roof tiles blackened edges!  Why not?  You hold me accountable for 23 math scores...

My work as a school counselor includes: organizing school wide events such as "Starts With Hello"; "No One Eats Alone" and "No Place For Hate". I present in classrooms and meet with groups of children. I work hard at preventing bullying. I am an Anti-Defamation League "World of Difference" trainer; and an "Olweus Bullying Prevention Program" trainer, and a "Workplace Bullying Prevention Program" trainer. I sponsor our schools' Kindness Club. Our club, as one of its activities, organized an LGBT workshop for our students.  We hosted three guests to share their stories: a gay man, a lesbian woman and a transgender man. 

I write all of the above because I want you, my dear readers, to "feel me."  I like my job as a school counselor.  I love children.  I work hard on their behalf.


I was evaluated by Miami-Dade County Public Schools--get ready my darlings--on seventeen eighth grade science FCAT scores.  That evaluation, paired with my Florida VAM evaluation of 23 randomly selected FSA math scores of the almost 1,100 students at my school, only gave me 42.50 points.  

I did poorly on the FSA math scores as my outcome was: -3.541. My VAM ratio I am giggling as I type this meaningless tripe (synonyms; nonsense and rubbish) thus, was
-2.6846 with a standard error of 1.319. I am not surprised at this poor showing as I myself do poorly with math.  I count on my fingers.  As a flight attendant, I'd relinquish the headset, duty free and liquor money counting to others.  I like money--and would have been happy to receive the extra $400--but numbers and I are strange bed fellows. 

It certainly is no surprise to me that my 23 students did poorly with me.

But even I can see that my evaluation, and my loss of a highly effective $400 cannot be statistically significant.  Twenty three scores.  Math scores.  Seventeen points.  Four hundred dollars.

What might I do with those lovely four hundred dollars? I'll never know. The State of Florida won't give 'em to me.
10:09 am edt          Comments

Monday, March 5, 2018

"You're a Mean One...."

 "You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch! You're a nasty wasty skunk, Your heart is full of unwashed socks, your soul is full of gunk, Mr. Grinch, the three words that best describe you are as follos, and I quote, 'Stink, stank, stunk'!"


School Board meeting.  Me.  There festooned with "It Takes Courage" and "Bully Free Starts With Me" buttons.  There to support another.  She was going to speak.  I was to stand beside her at the podium.  Silent.  Yet hoping to communicate.  To the erudite board members...and to the press.  A reporter had interest in this story.  

She, the target, with me.  She was summoned.  "Come here," said the union bigwig.  "Come talk to me."  

"I won't go without Kim."


A surreal moment that one. A behind a curtain shocker.  "If you don't speak, you'll get what you want."  

"I want a kindergarten classroom at (school's name)." 

"OK.  You will have that."

And so it was.  

She did not speak.  She, after health threatening abuse by our abuser, got out.  She used to accuse me of abandoning the school; taking the "easy" way out.  Ask why I'd not stayed and fought?  

My answer: "I might have died.  My health was harrowingly at risk.  I could not sleep.  Days of no sleep.  Waiting for his next attack.  Not just against me.  But children.  Sad, oh, so sad. Children.  The dread as I pulled into that parking lot.  The building of foreboding each morning entering. His suck ups scurrying everywhere...."  

More truth.

The assistant principal.  Oh dear God, her.  Her.  Her.  Her.  Her toothy smile.  The shake of her head and her relentlessly positive attitude.  Part of the evil.  The problem.  "What can I do?", she would often mutter through the glued grin.

Her to me as it became clear I was not a member of the cheating team: "You dropped the ball...; We are in different circumstances; We're a family.  We (she and the other counselor) went through fire together; I am trying to connect the dots.....; That's his leadership style--divide and conquer."

Her fear.  Why didn't she say "NO" to any of it?  His disrespect.  His misogyny? His sexual harassment?  His cursing?  His routine use of the word, "fuck"--as on the walkie-talkie to her with me sitting beside her, "Where the fuck are you?" Or was it "Get the fuck over here?" Of that I am uncertain.  The expletive "fuck", however, throbs in bright red...

Her.  Ruefully shaking her head and smiling as my brow scrunched at hearing that menace. "See? See the way he talks to me?" 

Why didn't she just say: "Uh-uh.  Not me, buster.  I am pursuing a doctoral degree for God's sake!  I am not your girly toy.  You do not get to bat me around like a feline's catnip ball! You're the feline, mister!  You are a sick cattish puppy, my friend.  I got more intelligence in my little finger than you got in that well coiffed head of yours!  Oh yeah!  I am going for every hackneyed metaphor I can think of because this is feeling real good!  

You're a two faced creep!  A suck up extraordinaire! A little big man stinking up the fresh air!  You're the biggest pile of doo-doo I've in awhile seen!  You stink to high heaven.  You stink and you're mean.

Let me sing you a song!  C'mon Kim!  Sing with me! Oh yeah!  You know the song!  Doesn't our brute resemble the grinning Grinch? Ear to ear nasty one, that!  Squinty eyed.  Leering. Heart a worm hole. Destroying careers, why that's his real goal!  Rip them apart. It's fun! It's amusing! It's better than that. It's all he's got! He and his lot, why they document, document, giggle and grin.  They send memorandums, That's the first sin!  Make up stories and lies, sent to the higher than highs!  

Ah!  There is the teacher, shivering and shaking....

Now, Kim, you know, why no risk I am taking....

6:31 am est          Comments

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