John Evans illustrates why we are so discouraged about the future of DeKalb schools

From Stan Jester’s Fact Checker blog >>

John Evans, President of the NAACP DeKalb County Branch, pled before the school board this week to look past qualifications and a “straight forward bid process” and hire a “black firm”.

Evans said, “I know that realistically that in a normal straight forward bid process [black firms] won’t make it. I know we won’t make it.” Evans went on to suggest they “massage” the process to make sure we have black representation.

+++ DSW2 >>>

John Evans holds a proclamation from the U.S. House of Representatives declaring October 27 as "John Evans Day" for his work as a community leader in DeKalb County. -Neighbor Newspaper Staff / Samantha M. Shal

John Evans holds a proclamation from the U.S. House of Representatives declaring October 27 as “John Evans Day” for his work as a community leader in DeKalb County.
-Neighbor Newspaper Staff / Samantha M. Shal

It’s about race. In DeKalb, it’s always and forever about race. The school district is only 10% white and 70% black, and in fact has more Hispanic than white students, yet the white/black race issue is and will continue to be the central focus of the school system leadership. And Evans continues to be rewarded for his antics, so he will never back down.  This is in spite of the fact that our superintendent is black, most of his high-ranking administrators are black and in fact an enormous number of system employees are black (try to find 2 or 3 Hispanic employees though!)

As the local leader of the NAACP, John Evans does not care about equity or civil rights for all – he only cares that black people get ahead by advocating for manipulating the hiring and bidding processes legally required for spending tax dollars. In fact, he did so boldly at a microphone at the recent televised public school board meeting. He even called it a “mission of mercy”! (Pitiful that he thinks blacks cannot win contracts based on merit.) Nevermind that we already have the Josie Alexander (black) firm as one of our two main firms (instead of just one, as suggested by our accrediting agency, SACS).  That’s not enough for Evans and his black ‘rights’ strong arms.  He wants it all – everything should be about black access. Everything.

It’s all so ridiculously tiring.  All white, Asian and Hispanic people need to leave this school system. You are not welcome. In fact, you are despised by many black leaders. Former board member Zepora Roberts once said publicly at a board meeting, “We don’t care about white children in the north end of the county.”  Pam Speaks (a former black DCSS administrator and board member from New York, removed by the Governor) publicly complained about the pressure she was getting from black school leaders to hire a black superintendent strictly based on race. And we all know Gene Walker’s famous declaration, “I see color. I love color.” … Gwinnett is very welcoming – we recommend that if you are able, make the move ASAP.

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You can see the video of John’s Evans public comments on FactChecker by clicking here. Below is the transcript of his speech to the DeKalb Schools Board and Superintendent which was received with applause from the mostly black crowd in attendance.

John Evans (President of NAACP DeKalb County Branch)

I’m here on a mission of mercy. I know these legal services are floating around somewhere. We’ve heard the ones you had retired. We want to know where the process is. The one thing we have as a problem at the NAACP is that we can never be sure blacks are going to be represented. We want to make it clear that we are expecting that process to work.

If you know you don’t have all the ingredients, you have to do something to make it work. The makeup of this board and the makeup of this county almost demands that we have good representation from black law firms. We are not talking about who, what or where, but we are certainly talking about having some. I think you all understand what I mean.

If we don’t do it, nobody else is going to do it. If we have control and we don’t use it, nobody else is going to work it out for us. We have to take what we have and mandate that we want some black firms in that process. I know that realistically that in a normal straight forward bid process we won’t make it. I know we won’t make it. So, we’re asking that those believe in doing the right thing to make sure that the ingredient of black law firms is involved in the process.

I don’t know what you have to do. I don’t know what you’ve done to date. But that process needs to be looked at to make sure that we have representation. We can’t say it too many times that we need black representation in the legal matters of this system. I hope that you all will certainly put your minds to it, whatever you need to do to massage it.

Make sure you do that, for if you don’t, I say it will be an injustice to this district. We’ve had black representation most of the time here recently. We hope and expect you to do it again this time.

>>>

Sickening. Enlightening, but sickening.

 

+++

UPDATE:
Read Stan Jester’s report and the transcript and video from Evans’ interview with Channel 2’s Richard Belcher.
WSB-TV2 Interviews DeKalb’s “Friends & Family Jobs Program” Sponsor

Belcher – But in the same interview today, Evans told me something he did not tell the school board, that black people need to “stop letting people do things for us all the time. It makes you more dependent.”

Evans – Foodstamps and vouchers and this and this and every time you look up it’s a grant or some CID. That’s all they’re doing, is doing the things for us.

Belcher – But isn’t this asking for something you might not win in open competition?

Evans – Yes.

Belcher – How does that help?

Evans – It helps somebody make some money for Christ’s sake.

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60 Responses to John Evans illustrates why we are so discouraged about the future of DeKalb schools

  1. Not so casual observer says:

    Buh Bye!

  2. Refugee from DCSS says:

    The next time anyone asks me why I send my children to a private school in another county, I will send them to this post.

  3. Refugee from DCSS says:

    I wish my family never moved to DeKalb County. The NAACP has become the evil they claim they are fighting.

  4. tracy says:

    What the hell? Just give the contract to Vernon and be done with it.

  5. BTW, below are the racial break downs of the school system vs the county:

    DeKalb County
    From the U.S. Census (2013 estimates)

    DeKalb total population: 713,340
    % White alone*: 37.0%
    % Black alone: 54.8%
    Hispanic or Latino: 9.1%
    Asian alone: 5.6%
    Two or More Races: 2.0%
    American Indian and Alaska Native alone: 0.5%
    (*White alone, not Hispanic or Latino: 30.0%)

    DeKalb County School System
    (from our November 2013 post, The numbers tell the story):

    98,298 students
    67% Black
    14% Hispanic
    11% White
    6% Asian
    2% ‘Other’

    +++
    For racial historical data, click here >> https://dekalbschoolwatch.com/facts-sources/historical-documents/
    And here >> http://dekalbschoolwatch.blogspot.com/2009/10/school-board-needs-to-make-decisions.html

  6. Let’s turn the tables and read it as if a white person said it >>

    I’m here on a mission of mercy. I know these legal services are floating around somewhere. We’ve heard the ones you had retired. We want to know where the process is. The one thing we have as a problem in the white community is that we can never be sure whites are going to be represented. We want to make it clear that we are expecting that process to work.

    If you know you don’t have all the ingredients, you have to do something to make it work. The makeup of this board and the makeup of this county almost demands that we have good representation from white law firms. We are not talking about who, what or where, but we are certainly talking about having some. I think you all understand what I mean.

    If we don’t do it, nobody else is going to do it. If we have control and we don’t use it, nobody else is going to work it out for us. We have to take what we have and mandate that we want some white firms in that process. I know that realistically that in a normal straight forward bid process we won’t make it. I know we won’t make it. So, we’re asking that those believe in doing the right thing to make sure that the ingredient of white law firms is involved in the process.

    I don’t know what you have to do. I don’t know what you’ve done to date. But that process needs to be looked at to make sure that we have representation. We can’t say it too many times that we need white representation in the legal matters of this system. I hope that you all will certainly put your minds to it, whatever you need to do to massage it.

    Make sure you do that, for if you don’t, I say it will be an injustice to this district. We’ve had white representation most of the time here recently. We hope and expect you to do it again this time.

  7. Oh the next thing you know, they will be insisting on giving the contract to Butler Wooten Cheeley & Peak LLP >>
    http://www.butlerwooten.com/Attorneys/Michael-Thurmond.shtml

  8. concerned citizen says:

    John Evans is a disgrace to HIS race. This conduct is beyond all bounds of decency and civility. DSW, that’s a great spin of his racist remarks. If only he and other Blacks could read and understand what you present so brilliantly.

  9. Another comment says:

    Since Hispanic and Native Americans are both not an actual race, but part of the Caucasian race 47% of the county is Caucasian, with Asians in 6%, then other are 2%. ( my cousins children are 50% white, 25% Asian, and 25 % black, they were raised by their white father, so I assume they identify as white, they do not identify as black). So there are 53-55% of the county residents who do not consider them self black. Then you can bet that the African Immigrants do not equate themselves with the African American ( blacks ) that Evans is speaking about. At the majority black schools the African Immigrants out perform the natural born American Black students by far. ( a friend told me at South Cobb’s High school graduation the top 200 graduating seniors were recent Africa immigrants. This was told to me by a black man that was one of the early non athlete graduates from UGA in the mid 1970’s ( there were 6 males in his class like him). He was amazed by the immigrants.

    What this tells is Caucasians, have chosen that their children cannot be educated in these public schools that aren’t about education children but providing jobs for adults who can’t compete on a level playing field for jobs on merit.

    When are whites, Hispanics and Asians going to start filling EEO suits and discrimination suits when they are not selected. Why should the side of the county that pays the highest taxes feel they can no longer send their children to the schools?

    John Evans is clearly a racist. Right on par with a KKK Grand Wizard! He just isn’t wearing a hood.

  10. Another comment says:

    I meant my cousins tri-racial kids identify as other, not white.

  11. Cedar says:

    In DeKalb this is what always floats to the top. That is its essence. Sad, incompetent and corrupt.

  12. simple says:

    We understand there are people out for their own interest in all races.We know that our school system need help. What are we going to do to help the children? DSW I loving reading the information you write. On the other hand, you are doing wrong by only focusing on the negatives all the time. You often put the African Americans again other races. It is about the children and their success. .
    Lets focus ideas for changing the schools for the improvement of the children and schools. Why not focus on ideas like, having all 4th and 5th grade classes in Dekalb, becoming Content area classes and not self-contained? The Georgia Milestone test will measure the students on a content base. Let’s use the closed schools as schools for behavior improvement students campuses? Why not meet with area feeder schools for the elementary and middle and high school twice a year to discuss grades and curriculum and behavior problems and how to solve them.

  13. @simple. Great idea – why don’t you write up a post about it and send it to us? You seem to know what you are saying… we are all volunteers and what you are suggesting is not anything we are expert at – we are not curriculum experts in any way. We sadly do report a lot of bad news, but that it simply because we report what we see… If you (or anyone) has an idea for a blog post, write it up and email it to us by all means!

    dekalbschoolwatch@gmail.com

    (ps, We did not put anyone against anyone – the leader of the DeKalb NAACP, John Evans wrote these words himself and said them out loud at the televised school board meeting last week. We simply posted a transcript of his exact words.)

  14. In thinking about it, simple, your idea would make an excellent blog all on its own. Why don’t you start one? It’s very easy – either go to blogspot.com (google blogs) or wordpress.com (wordpress blogs) and set one up. Then start writing. You may want to get a team of writers, as it sounds like your ideas require a lot of research and extra activities. But really – a detailed blog focused on curricula, and local school issues could be a very good thing!

  15. idabelle25 says:

    I haven’t thoroughly read all of the comments but I can tell you that there are African Americans that are equally frustrated with what is going on in Dekalb. Those of us who are like minded on wanting a good education for children, fairness and great leadership must not allow ourselves to be divided and let ignorant statements or causes by anybody to go unaddressed. So I will say that I have felt detached on the causes of the NAACP for quite a while. Often elderly leaders like the gentlemen mentioned, are still operating under old goals of creating opportunities for Blacks that truly did not exist not so long ago but now their focus should be on so many more things regarding the schools and children than this but this is what happens when people don’t step aside and let new blood benefit and learn from the experience of old leaders but allow younger leaders to take over and allow real serious problems to be addressed and as for as Gwinnett goes, there are many blacks along with white leaders in that school district but rhetoric of division of any kind is not there problem. I don’t know why this county is so divided about race. I haven’t lived here all my life but it’s the mindset and the poor leadership in this county that has all of us frustrated and poor leadership does not have a color. There are enough examples of good leadership in surrounding counties that have plenty of Black leaders and White. It’s the character of people that is in question, trust me! There are examples of counties and places all around this country that have nightmare leadership of school boards and they come in all colors don’t assume that the ignorance of a few represent the point of view of all in any group of people and those of us regardless of color but are like minded on what is right must speak out against it every chance we get!

  16. @idabelle: As with any group, of course there are people who will not agree with the group’s stance. However, John Evans is the leader of the DeKalb NAACP and his words represent an awful lot of people. In fact, his words were met with great applause from the mostly black audience in attendance. So, we should of course, say, ‘most’ not ‘all’ African-Americans agree with him. Glad you are enlightened enough to admit that this is the 21st century and blacks have pretty much assimilated as much as any other ‘race’… America is still a great melting pot and we try to see people as individuals. It is individuals who truly make a difference in the end – not usually ‘group think’ political messengers.

  17. idabelle25 says:

    @dsw
    I appreciate you addressing that comments and frankly I must be honest I do not think that we at utopia with race just yet. Trust me on that. I have read hurtful post on this site to prove that point but what I am saying is let’s not be deflected on anger on things that are not relevant. I have a high a moral conscious when it comes to ALL children and my heart has ached for ALL children I have had the honor of teaching not just those that share my skin color. I have always been an advocate of what is fair and right without bias. My point is ( and I will put it very plainly) these are poor leaders who are playing color games that I have heard white leaders on others play as well. Don’t feed into it. It is the trick of the devil. I have read posts that group( and not as individuals) African Americans as less intelligent and excuse makers. I am done being hurt over things like this because I can’t control what people think but as an enlightened person ( your words) I know that it is truly ignorant and unintelligent to generalize any group of people something that I will not be bated into doing despite history or darts that are currently being thrown and as for as the room of African Americans clapping, I don’t know what groups they represent You fill a room of supporters of your cause or organizations of like minded causes and you will get that reaction no matter what race you are.

  18. idabelle25 says:

    Sorry for typos

  19. Stan Jester says:

    Transformation Next Door
    As you might know, APS hired a new Superintendent earlier this year. She has a proven track record of academic achievement with a diverse inner city population.

    APS just announced David Jernigan will be the new Deputy Superintendent, number two in charge over there. Jernigan was the Executive Director for KIPP Metro Atlanta, overseeing the network of seven KIPP schools in metro Atlanta.

  20. @idabelle: You have definitely NOT EVER read a post here that stated that African Americans are less intelligent or excuse makers. Please never confuse people’s comments with what the moderators of this blog post as front page articles. Although comments are allowed to flow, we try very hard to take down or edit offensive comments and if you see one, again, please send us an email and we will address it.

    The only point about the group supporting Evans is that he is the chosen leader of the DeKalb NAACP. That says a lot in our opinion. Why come to this blog and get upset over his statements? How about going to a board meeting and signing up to be a speaker? You are free to state your opinion and say to the televised world that you and others disagree with what Evans said. Send an email to the board secretary, MARGARET C. FRANCOIS at margaret_c_francois@fc.dekalb.k12.ga.us and ask her for a slot to speak your mind to the board at next month’s meeting. You will be given 3 minutes. Go for it!

  21. idabelle25 says:

    @dsw
    I was referring to the post made by anothercomment . Who obviously had a lot of fiery statements that implied excuses and unintelligence and I myself am not trying to ignore problems of achievement gaps and could probably do a thesis on causes and proposed solutions and if I felt that, that was the overall feeling and tone of the site, I would never read it. I don’t think this is the case and I appreciate your stand against hurtful rhetoric but at the same time I don’t won’t people completely stifled from their opinions and thoughts. It gives me an opportunity to address it so that other minds aren’t poisoned against an entire group of which they have in some cases little exposure to other than the media. I would not have that opportunity if it was a conversation at a neighborhood backyard bar b q. By the way, thanks for the info on speaking publicly . I actually tried and was stopped at the door when they found out my topic many years ago but I should try again even though family members fear for my job security. But someone needs to stand for what is right without fear like people like Kirk Lunde.

  22. idabelle25 says:

    @dsw
    Also, you seem very angry but I appreciate this forum and all of the work you do to keep others informed whether you agree with my thoughts are not and I hope it is not an issue for me to express my opinion here as well as in a public school board meeting forum.
    Many blessings

  23. idabelle25 says:

    Or not are
    🙂

  24. @idabelle: I am not angry in the least, but I did want to emphasize that we in no way have ever posted anything with the message you inferred (that African-Americans are somehow “less intelligent or excuse makers”). People often equate random comments from people who write them in the comment area of the blog with things the moderators have said. We try to clean it up, but it’s not easy to keep up as we are community volunteers (not paid and not a part of the school system). (Oddly, no one ever blames Maureen at the AJC for things people say in the comments of her blog…) We appreciate hearing your thoughts, but also wanted you to understand that these were John Evan’s own words in this post – not anything we made up. If you really do disagree with him, we would strongly suggest taking it up directly with Evans and the NAACP. Your thoughts on any subject are welcome here, as long as you aren’t trying to blame us or this blog in general for anything anyone else has said or written. That’s all we’re trying to say.

  25. Contrarily to John Evans, we actually DO like what Jason Carter has to say about education >>

    As governor, I’ll focus every day on recruiting, retaining and supporting the best possible teachers for our students. My wife Kate is a public school teacher, and I know our teachers are tired of being treated like they’re the only problem instead of part of the solution. We all need to recognize that the strongest teacher workforce gives us our strongest chance to succeed.

    And unlike our current superintendent, Carter actually sends his kids to public school!!

    http://www.ajc.com/weblogs/get-schooled/2014/jul/10/jason-carter-we-need-plan-and-vision-education/

  26. simple says:

    I love the work you do at DSW. The truth often hurt when it is delievered via sight.My question to you is? What will you when Dunwoody,Tucker, Lakeside all have their own school district or own charter schools ? Is that the entire mission of DSW? Will all children in Dekalb win then? What is the sole mission of DSW? Divide and conquer or unite and progress together for the greater of the students of Dekalb.. Please you are a tool that can enlighten thousands.Speak for the masses in Dekalb and not at the people of Dekalb.Words have been used to put people again each other since this country started. The Bible was often the greatest tool to hold down a race. Please use our words for the greater good of all of his people. There will come a time when He ask us, what have you done for those in need of the most help?

  27. Simple says:

    What are some solutions that we can use to create a better learning environment for your students for the beginning of the 2014-2015 school year? List the solutions from a 1-10 basic..

  28. concerned citizen says:

    Simple and Idabelle – why not take some basic English and writing classes before you spatter these pages with disorganized and repetitious poor English? And why not list the solutions yourself? God knows, most of the people who write here have listed the solutions again and again! Where have you been? Please get someone at least to proof your comments. They’re so scattered and incoherent. Good Heavens, people. Model your educational skills or don’t comment at all. Certainly, you are not going to be a role model for our students with your writing as poor as it is. Sorry, but that’s the truth. Education starts at home.

  29. idabelle25 says:

    Very nice way to express your anger and deflect from the real issues:) I know who I am and that I am excellent at what I do. I am often passionate when writing and like most people have regrettable errors when typing on an iPhone. But your funny. Many blessings to you sir.

  30. idabelle25 says:

    Also, you may want to proofread your comments sir as well. However, I won’t hold you to that as it seems, you were passionate as well. Passionate to criticize me:)

  31. idabelle25 says:

    Excuse the earlier mistake. You are funny. I have got to stay on my toes with this one.

  32. idabelle25 says:

    I have to stay on my toes. :). Remember people
    No idioms or incorrect grammar when you reply. He’s watching.

  33. concerned citizen says:

    Let’s see. You need a comma after ” people,” and no cap on” No.” Your second sentence is an incomplete sentence, your pronoun reference to “you” when your antecedent is “people” is incorrect, and your pronoun reference to “He” is ambiguous.
    Moving back to your 6:22 blog, there should be two commas around “sir,” there is no comma after “seems,” and your last sentence is a fragment and cannot end with a 🙂 if it were a sentence.
    Moving back again to 6:08, you cannot end a sentence with a colon and a parenthesis mark. Sentence two is a compound sentence and needs a comma after “am,” You’re is the correct contraction for “you are,” not the pronound “your.” Finally, your last sentence is but another fragment, but even if it weren’t, you need a comma before the word “sir.”
    Moving back to 2:35, what you have written or tried to express is a phrase, not a sentence. Sadly, it’s another fragment.
    Moving back to 2:33, you need a comma after “angry.” Everything from “Also” on is a series of run-on sentences.
    Moving back at 2:20, you need to understand that from “who” on to “it” is another series of run-on sentences. From “I” to “thoughts” is another run-on. Also, you should use the subjective form of the verb to be, which makes the wording “if it were” the correct form. You need a comma after “ago,”
    Your last wording from “like people like Kirk Lunde” needs rewording due to its awkwardness.
    If you want to be taken seriously, you must learn the basics of the English language. It’s hard to understand what you are saying because of the huge number of errors; this is not a problem of “typos.” This is a problem of not having command of the language. The language is using you; you are not using the language to your best advantage. Your heart sounds like it’s in the right place, so please spiff up your language use. You have something to say, but your writing needs serious attention. If you are offended, so be it. It seems you are an educator (from your comment); therefore, speak and write like one. I would have to give your work a solid F.

  34. idabelle25 says:

    I am not offended sweetie and it’s pronoun not pronound. Goodnight and God Bless.

  35. concerned citizen says:

    That should be “offended” comma “sweetie” comma, “sweetie” semi-colon (due to the two commas), and “pronoun” comma. Get that old grammar book out. Good night to you as well; you’re OK with me. But, please, study some English.

  36. idabelle25 says:

    I will no longer respond to someone who says, ” If only he and other Blacks could read.” As you stated in your earlier post. I know exactly who you are and having this silly while entertaining exchange with you is pointless. I will pray for you. You simply wish you to make me angry and incite rage and for that sir you get an F. “I feel the sorriest for you.” ( The Help. ) Well, this was an interesting way to spend an evening.:)

  37. idabelle25 says:

    Let me save you some time. As you stated…. is a fragment. You would be so much fun in a Language Arts game. Really, I love when people keep me on my toes. I am weird that way. This is fun.

  38. idabelle25 says:

    I also used an extra you that was not needed. By the way, for anyone wondering, a published document may be reviewed and corrected two or three times during the steps of the writing process before the final draft is turned in. Even the brightest amongst us know to allow a partner or co -worker to examine the writing before turning it in because our brains work faster than our hands. Of course, most people wouldn’t think of going through this process to respond to a blog. That is what makes my new friend so hilarious to me. I am sure all my English professors would get a good laugh about this to. Okay enough, I am done laughing.

  39. Geez. Luckily for you all I went out to yoga and a meditation session. Please don’t argue grammar here. We long ago made it a rule that this is a conversation and as such cannot be judged on how it is written (including typos). Ella Smith suffered a great deal of the same kind of criticism and in fact, many think it’s ok to critique as this is a blog about education. There is a point to that, but we have publicly proclaimed critiquing grammar as off-limits here. Sorry. Teachers, you will just have to put your blinders on and ‘hear’ the message without regard to punctuation and spelling. We know – it’s hard – those red pencils are almost built in.

    Mostly – just try to stick to the topic of the conversation.

    Thanks everybody!

    Ohm!

  40. DecaturMax says:

    Besides the clear reverse discrimination, how pathetic it is that the NAACP would advocate for lawyers, but not teachers pay and lower class size. What a morally bankrupt leader. I bet lawyers donate more than poor kids. When Mr. Thurmond did his listening tour, racial tension was his focus. He and The Palace know how to divide the room against each other. We come to discuss education and end up focusing in racism and reverse discrimination. We are so easy to manipulate.

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