God and the Principal

Everman teachers say religion is a tool of harassment at their high school.
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Posted July 11, 2012 by ANDREW McLEMORE in News
Everman teachers say religion is a tool of harassment at their high school.Everman teachers say religion is a tool of harassment at their high school.

Everman High School teachers are divided over what happened in an April faculty meeting with Principal Nita Page. No one disputes that the principal, as usual, invoked her Christian faith. The question is: Did she use it to intimidate the school’s faculty?

“She questioned everybody’s Christianity,” one teacher said. “She said if we’re against her, we’re against God.”

That teacher and at least two others have accused Page of creating a hostile work environment by intimidating staff and repeatedly injecting her religion into monthly faculty meetings. It’s the same type of alleged behavior that drew two official complaints against Page in 2010 as well as anonymous letters sent to district administrators.

The principal’s “tyrannical” behavior began about three years ago and peaked with her belligerent diatribe at the April faculty meeting, said teachers who contacted the Fort Worth Weekly.

The two teachers, who asked that their names be withheld for fear of retaliation, accused Page of telling the room of about 70 staff members that if they weren’t following her, they weren’t following God. She “questioned the satisfaction of our personal lives,” called staffers “grown 2-year-olds,” and said they should be afraid of losing their jobs, the two teachers said.

Through a public records request, the Weekly obtained two anonymous letters sent to the school district’s administrators in mid-April that also complain of that meeting.

“She told everyone they are bad, and ‘God is watching,’ ”one letter said.

“She referenced God many times while threatening our jobs and contracts,” another letter said. “We were dismissed [from the meeting]. She then proceeded to the back of the library where she started to cry, again very irrational behavior.”

Opinions vary about Page in general and what happened at the April meeting specifically. Two other teachers said they didn’t think the principal’s behavior was unusual that day and praised her as an effective leader.

Jeri Pfeifer, the district’s superintendent, said in May that administrators were “looking into” what happened at the faculty meeting but that they had received no prior complaints about the principal. Pfeifer couldn’t be reached again this week to determine if the district had decided whether to take any disciplinary action.

“It’s been recent. This has not been ongoing,” Pfeifer said. “You try to do the best you can and treat people with dignity and respect at all times, but it’s in the nature of any business that you’re going to have conflicts over something.”

Page declined to comment for this story, and school board members didn’t respond to attempts to contact them.

Rodrick Brown, an economics teacher who attended the April faculty meeting, doesn’t recall the adversarial tone suggested by others. Page didn’t call teachers 2-year-olds, Brown said, but just told the teachers they were acting like 2-year-olds.

“It’s like any meeting and you’re not doing your job and the boss is doing her job,” he said. “It wasn’t a meeting to threaten anybody.”

Jennifer Harris, the school’s dean of instruction, said the principal isn’t shy about her Christian devotion. Page makes it clear she believes God has called her to be a school principal but hasn’t used her faith or her perceived calling to intimidate teachers, Harris said. The majority of the school’s teachers find Page a strong, capable leader, she said.

In Everman, a small town on the southeast edge of Fort Worth, religion isn’t easily avoidable. At a spring banquet for school district employees, there was prayer and gospel music.

“Religion is not something that’s swept under the rug. It’s definitely part of the environment here,” Harris said. “I honestly think that there’s an ulterior motive [for the complaints against Page] and that people are grasping for something.”

The teachers who are upset over Page’s behavior also describe themselves as Christian. Their complaint is about the threats that seem to coincide with Page’s devotion, they said.

“We were preached at,” one teacher said. “I’m not anti-religion, but it was very uncomfortable. I am a firm supporter of the separation of church and state.”

The religious comments are just one of many examples of Page’s behavior that sometimes crosses the line from employee management into over-the-top intimidation, the two teachers said.

“It’s gotten worse over the years,” one of them said.

The United Educators Association has heard similar criticisms before.

“Wow,” said union rep Wanda Scroggins in response to the complaints, “somebody should have said something.”

When Scroggins took over the union’s activities in the Everman district early this year, she was told that Page had previously been hard to work with and sometimes didn’t treat teachers with respect.

But Scroggins thought things had improved this school year. After all, Page had begun calling her to ask for advice about how to handle certain situations with teachers.

“My understanding is that she had never done that before,” Scroggins said. “I know I could have worked with her on this if it was brought to my attention.”

Page was hired in fall 2008 as principal for the high school, which has an enrollment of about 1,200 students. She was previously principal of the North Crowley 9th Grade Campus in the Crowley school district, just west of Everman. Page had positive references, which is why the district sought her out, Pfeifer said.

During Page’s four years at Everman, two teachers filed grievances against her and the school district, both in 2010. In one, teacher Caren Williams said Page berated her for bringing her sick 4-year-old daughter to school, despite having overlooked similar situations involving other teachers. Ultimately Williams dropped the complaint and left the district.

In the other grievance, the district settled with English teacher Kristina Kimberlin, paying her $5,000. Kimberlin said she’d been repeatedly humiliated by Page and a couple of assistant principals in private meetings and in front of other teachers. They told parents she “wasn’t there for the kids,” threatened to fire her, and repeatedly wrote her up for small infractions, she said.

“I was simply removed from classes and once I was crying, I was sent back to class. I find this incredibly humiliating and unprofessional,” Kimberlin wrote in a May 2010 letter to Pfeifer. “I am aware of other teachers being pulled from classes and then sent back after they had been thoroughly upset.”

One incident involved an assembly of the school’s advanced-placement students. First Page chastised the students for their low performance, then she told Kimberlin and two other teachers, in front of the students, to leave because the teachers refused to say the students hadn’t been performing well, Kimberlin wrote.

“She turned to us and said, ‘I thought you were here to support me, but you can just leave,’ and pointed to the door,” Kimberlin wrote. “Later one of the students asked me how I felt when Mrs. Page ‘threw me out of the meeting.’ ”

Pfeifer said the district’s settlement wasn’t an admission that Page had done anything wrong.

“From my experience as a school administrator for 25 years, this is a very low number of grievances,” Pfeifer said.

Leaders of the Texas State Teachers Association, a union with just nine members in Everman, also hadn’t heard of any problems with Page, said spokesman Clay Robison. The details of the complaints “sounded strange,” Robison said.

“If I were a teacher at that school, I would have reservations about working for a principal that had two grievances stacked against her in that short amount of time,” he said. “I could understand the teachers working for her to be upset.”

Many of the teachers at Everman like Page and believe she’s brought accountability to the school, Brown said. He pointed to improved TAKS scores this year as evidence that her methods are working.

“To me, she’s fair, in every aspect,” he said. “If anything’s wrong, she calls you in to talk about it. After that, it’s done.”

Besides, adults have freedom of speech, and that includes principals at faculty meetings, Pfeifer said.

“There’s a respect for that. Comments on religion are legally controlled when students are in attendance,” she said. “In meetings with adults, they have free speech.”

Federal workplace laws, however, do protect teachers from intimidation and harassment, and some Everman teachers said Page is guilty of that behavior.

One of the teachers who talked to the Weekly said several other teachers were upset by the comments at the meeting but were too terrified to speak up.

“She told us to quit bitching,” the teacher said. “She’s a bully. She’s a tyrant. … We have a very strict bully policy in place in our district, and it’s so ironic that it’s the administration inflicting it on the teachers rather than a student inflicting it on a student.”


40 Comments


  1.  
    Ex-EISD Teacher

    The only two employees who went on the record are well known sycophants. Look at the turnover rate at the High School and you’ll see what a terrible, bullying tyrant she is. Page stepped so far over the line she makes Kathy Culbertson’s infamous comment look good I’m comparison.




    •  
      Purple & Proud

      If asked, there would have been MANY more employees making positive statements about Ms. Page. The majority support her. Everman High School is an outstanding school, and those of us behind Ms. Page are working to continue to make it better everyday, every year. We are grateful for her leadership!




      •  
        Not Drinking the KoolAid

        I’ve followed this thread, mostly for the pure vicarious joy of watching snakes eat themselves, but this is too much. I think, if asked, most of the HS teachers would choose a vat of boiling oil before offering positive support of Mrs. Page. And, I’m not sure what your definition of a majority is, but the CORRECT statement would be the majority wish she would leave EHS. I struggle to understand what you are grateful for – the paranoia, the irrationality, the poor communication skills, her ability to alienate large groups of people or maybe the delusions of grandeur and her messiah complex. Just asking.




        •  
          Really?

          Great idea on your part. Where should I have your vat of hot oil delivered? Will the other two whiners (majority) be joining you?




  2.  
    Another Ex EISD Teacher

    In all fairness, the bullying and the tyranny should be overlooked because of the dramatic increase in TAKS scores during Page’s tenure as princip- oh, wait, that hasn’t happened. Carry on.




    •  
      Ex EHS teacher

      No an adminitstrator as has a legal responsibility to ensure that employees and students have a non hostile work environment. If teacher are yeaching then student will do well on STAAR AND EOC’s. It appears that teachers are sucessful in the classroom a place Page seldom goes.




  3.  
    Former Bulldog

    This article is not surprising in the least. Page has been known to berate teachers in front of students, and is extremely bigoted when it comes to other religions. I was never so glad as to leave that district. I filed a grievance against Page two years ago for treatment I received for not supporting her.

    As for UEA and Dr. Pfeiffer not knowing anything about problems, that is a load of crap. I know for a fact that during the 2009-2010 & 2010-2011 school years, MANY teachers contacted the Superintendent and UEA on MULTIPLE occasions regarding religious discrimination, threats, intimidation and bullying behavior. I also have documentation to that effect.

    It is not surprising that the teachers were afraid to speak out against her. When the Superintendent turns a blind eye because she and the school board are afraid of this woman, it does not bode well for fair treatment of employees. The students dislike Page as well because of her tendency to play favorites in disciplining some students.

    This woman needs to be removed from her post. Now.




  4.  
    Ex student-ex teacher

    Seriously, wake up EISD, good teachers have been leaving in droves because of Page since she was hired!!!!!




  5.  
    Ex-EISD Teacher

    Brown said: ““To me, she’s fair, in every aspect,” he said. “If anything’s wrong, she calls you in to talk about it. After that, it’s done.”

    He makes no mention of how when teachers disagree with her she screams, literally screams, at them then demands they get out of her office. That’s some fine leadership there not to mention a great display of faux-Christianity.




    •  
      Ex Eisd teacher

      Mrs Page is a strong dynamic leader! Her main priority is the safety and education of our students. Some of the teachers in EISD are not there for the students… They only show up because of the pay check, and the so called “good” teachers who leave the district with a salty taste in their mouth after working for Mrs Page, don’t need to be there anyway because they don’t understand how to approach and reach the plethera of ethnic dynamics and socioeconomic challenges that come with the students and the EISD community.
      The real problem with this school district didn’t start in 2008 (when Mrs Page was hired) and it won’t be fixed when she leaves. The district was screwed up before she got there and still is, but she has made remarkable efforts and achievements with the faculty and students at EHS!!
      She is like a miniature “Joe Clark”! She speaks up and stands for the rights and equal opportunities for the students at EHS…
      If you don’t have a passion for educating students and a gift/ the patience sometimes needed to be able to reach students who are at risk, then Mrs Page and EISD would not be a good fit for you, stop waisting everyone else’s time and doing a disservice to our kids!!!




      •  
        Former Bulldog

        Wow…a “miniature Joe Clark”? Really??

        So, telling white teachers that they are unable to reach black students because they are black, harassing teachers because of their religion (or lack thereof), and disrespecting professional educators because they don’t buy her brand of crazy makes her a “minature Joe Clark”?

        Wow. I’m curious. Why did you leave Everman if it is such a teaching paradise for you?




      •  
        Ex-EISD Teacher

        Point: Please change your name when replying. It looks like I’m talking to myself.

        Okay, I’ll play.

        “Alex, what is ‘Attack the messenger instead of the issue. I’ll take Logical Fallacies for $800.”

        See, in response I should point out the punctuation and spelling mistakes in your post, but that would be too easy. Instead, let’s look at some of the problems with your argument. Isn’t it much more productive when you talk about the issue?

        “Some of the teachers in EISD are not there for the students…”

        Teaching is a profession, not a religious vocation. As professionals we do not tolerate being ranted to, yelled at or attacked personally because of our leader’s religious insanity. You know who else claimed God was with them? The Nazis. Gott mit Uns / God is with us.

        “They only show up because of the pay check,”

        So you donate your services for free? Excellent!

        “…the so called “good” teachers who leave the district with a salty taste in their mouth after working for Mrs Page, don’t need to be there anyway because they don’t understand how to approach and reach the plethera of ethnic dynamics and socioeconomic challenges that come with the students and the EISD community.”

        And yet most of these good teachers are now working in districts where real leadership can be found, in schools with near identical demographics to Everman, and are experiencing great success and happiness as are their students.

        “The district was screwed up before she got there and still is,”

        I concur.

        “..but she has made remarkable efforts and achievements with the faculty and students at EHS!!”

        Cite three.

        “She speaks up and stands for the rights and equal opportunities for the students at EHS…”

        What about the rights of teachers to be treated professionally, to not be preached at by an employee who works for a governmental entity, and who should have the opportunity to be free from petty, religious nonsense from their supervisors in a calm, professional work environment?

        “If you don’t have a passion for educating students and a gift/ the patience sometimes needed to be able to reach students who are at risk, then Mrs Page and EISD would not be a good fit for you…”

        I see what you did there. “If you disagree with her, you’re a crappy teacher who doesn’t care about the kids.” I teach my students critical thinking skills so they see manipulative statements like that as the sign of someone who disagrees but cannot substantiate their disagreement.

        Let’s be clear on two very simple things:

        1. Teachers are adult professionals who do not need to be talked down to as if they were children by an adult in a leadership position who cannot control their own emotions.

        2. Your supervisor’s religion should never be forced upon you in any fashion.

        Page fails at both.




        •  
          Former Bulldog

          Well stated. Thank you for your comment.




        •  
          Former Proud Bulldog

          I worked at EHS for 15 years. If has had its up and downs. Unfortunately for the students there have been more down than up. Mr Melton was a strong leader, Ms Culbertson was experiencing mental health issues, Mr Amos was out on the campus to help settle it back down (which he did fairly well) and Page was hand pick by former employees from Crowley. The SBDM had 2 choices one did not even meet the min. standards and the other was from a small charter school and she had been fired. Some choice, really no one on the committee was happy with the choice that had been made.

          While I am a Christian our federal government has decided that there a division between religion and public education. Agree or disagree this is fact. Another fact is that Page regularly uses screaming, hollering and threat to try to get her way. If you agree with her, you somewhat safe, at least for the moment but disagree with her and you will see another side of her. She shows favoritism between teacher and students. Blatant favoritism; over and over again. Department head are dismissed of their duties again and replaced if they fail to agree with her or dare to question an illegal action they are being asked to perform. This is not the first year teachers and parents have complained about her actions. The superintendent was not surprised at the complaints but rather surprised that teachers are now speaking up for them selves. School Board member have also been aware of her action s but instead of being upfront and taking action they tried to sweep it under the rug. Teacher often start grievance or utilized their professional organizations but this is a long process and you must suffer Ms Pages wrath. Good teacher leave the district for many reasons one is them being mistreated. If you look at the teachers currently at EHS you will find a disproportionate amount of teachers from Crowley ISD. Yes Crowley is closed but so are Kennedale, Ft. Worth, Arlington etc. Ms Pages comments have been recorded so many of the comments can not be disputed. They will continue to be recorded. While she may be on good behavior right now, I doubt that she will be able to continue with a professional attitude and treat to all teachers and students.

          This is type of teacher abuse needs to stop and corrective action needs be made immediately. At this late pint in time even sending her to another campus would be a welcomed break for many if not most teachers at EHS. Perhaps even for Page. Fortunately for the students at EHS they have many great long time teachers that refuse to be run off or threaten into leaving.

          For those curious, I left to go to another district where I am currenlty in adminstration and while Imiss my teacher friends I do not miss Page and her crew.




        •  
          Ex EHS teacher

          Amen. Thank you for stating it so well.




      •  
        Ugh

        …waisting…? Really?




  6.  
    six17

    Have the head coach fire her he makes more than the superintendent. This is one misdirected ISD. Sorry kids Dexter Manley comes to mind




  7.  
    worried parent

    I agree with all that is said, I am more worried about my child’s SAFETY attending a school next year that seems to focus on Mrs. Page’s administration running that school. I am not prejudice but I am concerned. Being that the school is now a majority Hispanic makeup and there will be NO Hispanic representation at that school led alone Caucasian…

    The only African American Male Administrator is being moved to the Davis Center? really?

    A High School ran by
    * an African American (god Stricken principal WOMAN)
    * an African American Assistant Principal WOMAN
    * an African American Assistant Principal WOMAN

    OH and don’t forget the FOUR AFICAN AMERICAN COUNSELORS

    I am just concerned that my child will not have anyone to look up to. We NEED MALE multi CULTURAL role models… Can anyone tell me where they are?

    I am sure that these administrators have great qualities, because they would have not been put in these positions if not, Right? but I need to see more representations that will benefit ALL students at EHS>




    •  
      A concerned citizen of Everman

      Are you really a worried parent, or are you a worried current employee who has nothing more to do than hide behind technology and complain? Ha!! You are funny!!
      Since you are so worried, are you worried about the Hispanic population of students being taught by a predominantly WHITE staff? Were you concerned when a WHITE woman was appointed to run the district? Or a WHITE man appointed to run an athletic program in a MINORITY district with over 25 WHITE coaches? Who do our students really look up to?As a parent, I do understand your point, but look at race on all levels!




    •  
      Ugh

      Dear Worried Parent, you have every right to be concerned. Everman school district was once a “white” community – if you want to throw race into the mix – but it has changed with the times. You can’t fire white teachers because they’re “white” but as openings naturally occur, consideration should be given to including all races in the faculty and staff. Also, the black assistant principal was moved to the 9th grade center because he is the “freshman administrator,” so this move makes sense.

      Dear Concerned Citizen of Everman, why would you question Worried Parent’s authenticity? Attacking someone because their opinion differs from yours makes you appear insecure and childish. Worried Parent makes some valid points. As you said, look at race from all levels. A great number of the white teachers/coaches have been there many years and there are several black coaches. Times change; demographics follow; changes are made. Perhaps not with the speed of light.




    •  
      Respect...

      I am glad the “worried parent” announced he or she wasn’t racist before lambasting ALL the African-American women administrators and counselors that work at EHS. Sounds like a truly worried parent…more concerned about the color of the person and not the qualifications of the person.

      Perhaps I can assuage the parent’s concern by letting them know the majority of the staff is white since race is more important than qualification.

      I would pray that worried parent could be enough of a role model for their own child rather than looking for others to fill that void.




    •  
      Former Proud Bulldog

      You are correct to have concerns about security. If not for the coaches (male and female) there would be little staff to help break up fight and carry on hallway discipline. Yes the students are not angels and they do fight. Who will be there to stop such activities? All the administrators except one have been hired by Ms Page. She brought 2 of them with her when she came from Crowley. It is sad how the hiring process has deteriorated in recent years.

      If you look at the number of young people that graduate from EHS with athletic scholarships and stay out of trouble wit the law because of their time spent in preparation for their sport you would thank a coach every day. Fortunately for the school the athletic program actually brings money into the district rather than cost the district. Data show that student in athletic programs stay out of trouble more than the average student. As soon as Page has the number of years experience as the Athletic Direct perhaps she will make more money. I doubt that she will make it that long. Yes I remember when the athletic Director and ass’t. Director taught classes.




  8.  
    Back to the issue

    Least we forget, this is not a race issue, this is an issue of one principal who has misused her power to intimidate, bully and threaten employees, all the while hiding behind the ruse of her religion and “being there for the kids”. It is beyond my comprehension how this type of behavior is allowed. It is a very sad society that must always bring race into EVERY issue. Mrs. Page’s behavior has nothing to do with her race but does have to do with her misguided leadership style and completely improper treatment of other human beings on a daily basis.




  9.  
    Back to the issue

    Least we forget, this is not a race issue. This is an issue of one principal who has misused and continues to misuse her authority to intimidate, bully and threaten employees on a daily basis; all the while hiding behing her religion and being there for “the kids”, because according to he lame apology, that is what she is guilty of.

    It is beyond my comprehension how this type of behavior is allowed.

    However, it is a very sad society that MUST bring race in EVERY issue. Mrs. Page’s behavior has nothing to do with her race but does have everything to do with her misguided, self-indulged leadership style to improperly treat other human beings on a daily basis. It is a real shame!




  10.  
    Bulldog Pride

    As I read the article I can honestly say it makes me sick. That a teacher would fail at an attempt to make a formal complaint, so they resort to what I say is a good case of slander. If the ISD didnt find any truth to the complaint then it should have been dropped. If the work environment is sooooo bad then why not just leave. By having to write an anonymous article to a second hand media source for nothing more then to slander your boss is pretty sad. I guess you still work there since you cant put your name on this article. I guess the hostile work envirnment is not very hostile if you have decided to stay. I find it a little funny that out of 70 teachers in this meeting that only 2 were offended. Maybe those were the teachers that were not performing and thats why they got their feelings hurt. The other 68 I guess were performing and knew the meeting didnt apply to them. Mrs. Page beliefs doesnt have anything to do with you doing your job. If this was such a big story at the time then why didnt we see it on the 5 oclock news or read about it in the Star Telegram? Judging by all the responses Im sure you told your friends. Where is your pride in your job and your profession??? If YOU cared about the students then you wouldnt have to be so selfish by having this slander printed. This is a sad day in Bulldog Country.




    •  
      Ex-EISD Teacher

      Stand aside, make a hole, logical fallacies coming through.

      Bulldog Pride said: “If YOU cared about the students then you wouldnt have to be so selfish by having this slander printed.”

      You can’t keep doing this and expect people to take you seriously. Your entire argument boils down to a fallacy; “If you don’t do A, then you’re not B.” It’s a clever tactic to use on the ignorant, but the majority of us commenting see it for the failed logic it is. Whether or not the teachers care about the students is not being debated. What is being debated is Page pushing her faux-Christian religious beliefs on the people over which she is in a position of authority. Period, She did. She’s wrong. She should be called on the carpet for it.

      As I understand it, a formal grievance was never filed but anonymous letters were sent. Why? If you have ever worked in a place where speaking up makes you a target, no matter whether you are right or wrong, you’d understand. Page targets people who disagree with her, instead of seeing disagreement as a leadership opportunity. People are scared of her and know the district has proven it won’t do anything about her. That’s another serious failure of leadership on the part of Pfeiffer and her administrators that needs to be explored.

      So let’s recap, shall we?

      Overbearing, irrational, bullying principal talks to her staff like children and says that if you’re not on her side you’re against God. People are so scared of her and her bullying tactics and retribution that they only dare send anonymous letters to Pfeiffer telling about it. Pfeiffer and the rest fail to act yet again to curb Page and people look for a way to solve this problem outside of failed official channels.

      Page must go. Pfeiffer should follow the example Mr. Andress set a few years ago and resign, showing that she understands she’s responsible for the failure of Page as a campus principal and is responsible for her teachers being hurt and demoralized.

      Now rebut me without a straw man or similar.




      •  
        Bulldog Pride

        I think its time that we get some things straight. I have worked for the government for the past 15 years. I know a little about grievances. Sending anonymous letters is not part of a grievance policy. Thats just tattling. If this work environment is that bad then go on the other side of I-35 to Crowley. I heard they have plenty of openings. You cant hold Dr. Pfeiffer accountable for not doing her job when there was never a formal complaint made. You seem intelligent enough to understand and have knowledge of policy. It cant work for you if you dont use it properly. I went to school back when we said the Pledge of Allegiance before every day started. I also went to school back when we prayed before our athletic events. Of course now a lot of that is gone and look where that has got us. We have police in our public schools now, so the kids that want to learn can learn. I dont have a problem with Mrs. Page sharing her faith. Im sorry that you find that offensive. I guess you are more spiritual than religious and thats ok. If her leadership style is not to your suiting then maybe you can learn from it and when and if you ever achieve the rank of principle you can have your own style. There is not one style of leadership that suits 100% of the people. Pointing out whats being done wrong in meetings is not overbearing,,,its called being a leader. Bulling by definition only takes place to those who are weaker. If you are not weak then you can not be bullied. Everman ISD wanted Mrs. Page as a principle. She is inspiring the students and also trying to motivate her staff. If she wasnt doing a good job then other school districts wouldnt be calling her for her to come to their district. Everman wouldnt have renewed her contract. If she wasnt a stand up woman then she wouldnt have appoligized in another meeting, but no one wants to talk about that because once she was doing what yall would consider the right thing all the cell phones stopped recording. That just shows you the true character of some of the staff. Maybe next time yall should call the “Thrifty Nickle” to gossip and slander. People read that more.




        •  
          Former Bulldog

          Actually, complaints have been filed for things other than this meeting. I should know, since I filed one of those complaints. Page is everything this story says she is and more. It sickens and saddens me that Pfeiffer and the district won’t do anything to stop her. It made me even sadder to have to leave that district. I loved those kids like they were my own; however, one can only take so much abuse and baseless accusations before it’s time to move on.

          As to your off-track rant about the Pledge and prayer in schools, the Pledge is said every day at Everman. This is something you’d know if you knew what the hell you were talking about. But you don’t, so there’s that. And prayer in school violates the separation of church and state as decided by the US Supreme Court; again, something you would know if you were paying even the least bit of attention.

          Whatever. I am glad I am out of that district and in a place where I am valued as a human being and not trashed because I’m not a sycophant.




  11.  
    Bulldog Pride

    Please forgive me of my mis-spelling principal.




  12.  
    Back to the issue

    She was not “sharing” her religion with her staff. She was directly threatening her staff that if we were against her we were against God. If you have worked for the government for 15 years, you do know this is against THE LAW. Further her apology was a sham. She said if being there for the kids was offensive then she was “guilty” as charged”. There was NO apology for the statements she made. No mention. You know why? Because when questioned by the administrators about her April meeting, this fine Christian “miniature Joe Clark” lied and said she never said those things. At least Mr. Clark had the dignity
    to stand up for every thing he said unlike
    Mrs. Page. But that’s what bullies do, they never admit to what they have done. Thus the recordings at all meetings. Proven liars are never
    trusted again.
    Dr. Pffiefer didn’t say these things to us, Page did. Then Page cowardly lied to save herself. A real Christian act?




    •  
      Bulldog Pride

      I was asked to read the article. That is why I am even discussing the issue. Since you have brought out this slander Im sure thats the only reason you are reading it too. Everyone knew the article was going to be published. When I was told about it I knew the article would not be positive. This media source doesnt print anything positive only controversial things that they want to take a side with. I dont think that this media source is reliable, but I will say that it layed the facts out in this case. One of witch disputes what was actually said by another person that was in the dreadful meeting about the 2 year old comment. I find it hard to believe that you as a teacher would be in a meeting with the principal and other administrator involving the issue. Im currious to know why you think Mrs. Page was lying if you were not there. Maybe the people looking into the anonymous letters didnt find them to be credible. That is why you went to the FTWeekly in a last ditch effort to just slander you boss. If anyone is guilty of anything its you being insubordinate. Once again if the working conditions are so bad then why do you still work there? What did you really plan to accomplish by showing that you boss is a God fearing women. Im sure their are other people reading this wishing they had a God fearing boss.




      •  
        Former Bulldog

        Oh, look! Another ad hominem attack!

        Why should teachers have to endure such abuse? Why should ANY employee have to endure such abuse? Why should the teacher have to leave? Why shouldn’t Page have to leave? SHE is the one who is making that school a toxic environment. SHE is the one who is, quite frankly, breaking the law by abusing her teachers and practicing open discrimination. SHE is the one who is the problem, NOT the teachers who filed the complaints or this story.

        I’m curious – is this Jennifer Harris or Roderick Brown posting? I can’t tell.

        And as for Mrs. Page’s penchant for liberally verbalizing her “Christian” views, allow me to quote her personal Lord & savior who espoused this view on personal faith:

        ““Beware of practicing your righteousness before other people in order to be seen by them, for then you will have no reward from your Father who is in heaven. “Thus, when you give to the needy, sound no trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may be praised by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. “And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward.” – Matthew 6:1-34.

        Perhaps Mrs. Page should actually read her Bible and practice what she loves to shout from the rooftops.




  13.  
    Back to the issue

    P.S. If this publication is such “a second hand media”, then why are you reading it?




  14.  
    Back to the issue

    You’re funny! And you really need to learn to spell. Have a nice day!




  15.  
    Really?

    Looks like it must have been a slow news week when this article was written. I suggest that the two or three whiners who approached the Weekly with the “story” should find their mommy to have their diapers changed.




  16.  
    Not a Union

    Guess what? UEA and TSTA are not unions, have no collective bargaining rights, and just get in the way. Why does every story that involves any school district quote UEA?




  17.  
    OOG

    I’m late to the article, but a few comments are perhaps still in order.

    First, it’s often difficult to distinguish between a teacher who’s just griping over, say, a bad review, and one who has a legitimate complaint. It’s also difficult to distinguish between those who are “pets” and those who are genuinely committed to a person in a position of leadership. Everman has all four (and many that fall at various points along the spectrum). Does Nita have some qualities that make her a good leader? Certainly. Does she have some that make her something of a bully? Yes, again. The question is, on balance, which predominates. In my time at EHS, I saw enough of both to find it difficult to “rule” definitively one way or the other.

    In the first two years of Nita-as-principal, things went quite well. Granted, this was because I was on her good side. When an issue arose my final year that required some serious attention by administration, but that also presaged potentially negative publicity for the school, my attempts to get administrators to take the side of the students were met with significant hostility. Part of this, I believe, is that Nita was more interested in getting “facts” from a close circle of confidants than in actually speaking with the students. It was heart-breaking to see a pair of students watch as the principal they trusted deftly ignored their traumatic experience of being bullied. My attempts to have one student removed from our team because of this incident were met extreme push-back, and I “fell from grace,” so to speak.

    Prior to this falling-out, I often wondered why I heard so much grumbling from my fellow teachers, but when I asked, the reply was often “just don’t cross her.” I never understood until I, well, crossed her. As such, based on my own personal experience which is admittedly anecdotal, it is not true that a “majority” of teachers support her, but perhaps it’s not true that a “majority” would like to see her go, either. There groups on both ends, but I’d say the true majority more or less keep their heads down and just do their jobs. I do know that a significant number of teachers I spoke with expressed frustration at Nita’s “philosophy” regarding how to address mistakes by teachers. If one or two teachers made a mistake, it was not uncommon for the entire faculty to be addressed as if it was a collective decision to do wrong. The recordings of Nita berating teachers are real, and have been shared with Dr. Pfifer, so it is not a question of *whether* Nita has been abusive in her dealings with teacher, but whether such events were anomalies, or “business as usual.” Perhaps those who never took offense at such rants felt they were not addressed to them. Nita’s language, however, (“you all,” “the staffulty,” etc) left little room to believe she was not addressing each person in the room.

    With respect to the religion, Nita most certainly violates some of the most basic precepts of separating religion and education, both with students and with adults, but so do many teachers. It is also strongly implied by Nita and other administrators that dissent on the basis of religion will not be tolerated. That EISD had to settle a lawsuit with respect to this issue is an important point not to be missed. I’ll never forget the assembly that was *heavy* in overtly religious content, and at the behest of Nita, if students are to be trusted.

    There are certainly problems at EHS, but not all of them are Nita’s doing. Her greatest strength–that she has a focus and mission and is determined to see it through–is also her greatest weakness, as she will brook no dissent. She does not appear to understand that, given a faculty of wonderful, highly-educated, dedicated people, the appearance of dissent may actually stem from a desire to see the best for students. Whether Nita is simply insecure and does not handle criticism well, or as suggested above has deeper issues related to race, is not something I think we can know. What does appear to be the case, however, is that there is significant unease among large groups of teachers at the school that can be traced back directly to Nita. And not all teachers who called UEA, etc filed complaints. I personally know of ten teachers who met directly with Dr. Pfeifer, rather than “airing dirty laundry,” as it were.

    For my part, I am glad to be done with Nita, but I can understand why some teachers thrive under her leadership. Do I think our students deserve better than her? Absolutely. Do I think she is the person that will impact their education the most? Not for a second. The classroom teachers are the ones who ensure that EHS students succeed. In all my years at EHS, I am convinced of one thing: the teachers at EHS will do whatever it takes to fill the gap left by administration. I have great respect for my once-fellow-colleagues and tremendous hope for the future of EISD. Joe C. Bean will weather “Hurricane Nita”–of this I have no doubt. I am only sad to see so many wonderful teachers seek employment elsewhere just so they can feel like they’re respected as professionals, rather than considered to be “acting like 2 year-olds.”





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