Walter Dansby Resigns as Fort Worth School District Superintendent

25
Posted June 2, 2014 by Eric Griffey in Blotch
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At a special board meeting on Monday night, Walter Dansby announced his resignation as superintendent. The meeting was called to determine his contract status.

The board voted 6-3 to accept his resignation, with only Jacinto Ramos, Norman Robbins, and board president Christene Moss voting against.

Dansby and the board released a joint statement:

The board and Mr. Dansby have reached an agreement by which Mr. Dansby resigns as Superintendent of the district on June 9, 2014 and retires as an employee of the district on January 31, 2015.

On behalf of the entire district, the board of trustees expresses its sincere appreciation to Mr. Dansby for his efforts while serving as superintendent of this great school district and its wonderful students, parents, and administrators, and for the many achievements and accomplishments of the entire district team during Mr. Dansby’s tenure as superintendent and illustrious career as an employee of the district.

Mr. Dansby thanks the present and past board of trustees for providing him with the opportunity to serve in the Fort Worth Independent School District. A school district is measured by the commitment of the board, staff, and community to its children and their achievement. The district is indeed so committed. Mr. Dansby would like to thank his heartfelt appreciation to the staff and community for their support of the district’s programs and services during his term as superintendent.

Success requires hard work, dedication, leadership, and vision. The board and Mr. Dansby wish to acknowledge and recognize the teachers, principals, administrators, staff, students, parents, and patrons who have all contributed to the district’s success.

The board extends its best wishes to Mr. Dansby in his future endeavors. On its part, the board will soon begin its search for an interim superintendent so as not to disrupt the district’s operations.


25 Comments


  1.  
    Justice

    FINALLY!!! But wow, am I surprised at the votes against Dansby resigning! Was Sims asleep when the vote took place and someone nudged him and he voted “for” by accident? It was expected from Moss and Robbins, but Cinto Ramos??? I am elated and disappointed at the same time that Mr. Ramos, who has heard and seen the malevolence for the past 4 yrs, as he was debriefed on what was going on with the Palazzolo/AHHS case, that he would STILL support Dansby! He worked you Mr. Ramos, like he did Vasquez and Rangel. This is just as bogus as the Channel 4 news reported at 10:00 stating “Mr. Dansby was not in the middle of any controversies.” Seriously? Well, that is to be expected, considering that not one blasted news station has dared to cover what has been transpiring the past 4 yrs with the Palazzolo case, the impending defamation lawsuit against Dansby, the backdoor deals he made to become Superintendent, oh the lies, and so forth and so on. Hell yes he is “in the middle of controversies”, but the public doesn’t know, unless they read this paper. Its fortunate for Dansby, and the board for that matter, that our district has continued to fail under the last two Superintendents (more under Dansby), so they can use that as an excuse that he “resigned”, more like a “facilitated departure”. After all, the public bought Johnson’s reason to “resign”, saying she wanted to be with her family in California, namely her ailing mother! Was that a joke or what? She was quickly hired at TCU to head some made up curriculum dept for urban communities…blah, blah, blah! Ah FWISD, “the tangled webs you weave”. Why dost thou insult our intelligence so?

    Don’t be fooled! Dansby got off easy by resigning, but guaranteed, he will still be under fire, when Palazzolo continues his lawsuit against him and all the other illegal things he did to prevent key witnesses from testifying. You can run (and hide temporarily), but it all comes around eventually! You reap what you sow, Mr. Dansby! Now your underhanded deals have come back and bit you on your ass! Next on the agenda, is to rid most of the cabinet and then some, especially Sorum, Munge, Davies, Ray, Kaufman, Menchaca, etc. There is a lot of blame to go around this district for epic fail’s regarding failing schools, millions in litigation, failed accounting systems, millions in overpayments budge woes, and supporting the likes of Kyev Tatum with a job in exchange for his silence about the Palazzolo/AHHS case! And just recently, given $ for a bogus program, which Tatum and his wife will champion, in exchange for his continued undying support of his pal, Dansby! Wake up BOE and do the right thing and hire someone with more experience next go around. And when I say “more experience” I don’t mean someone with 40+ years of being an egotistical, pompous, and self-serving philanderer!

    I say, HELL TO THE YEAH, HE IS VERY MUCH SO IN THE MIDDLE OF CONTROVERSY!!!!!! At the end of the day, he is gone, but there is still much to do to clean up this district. Enough with the wheeling and dealing! Let’s get back to what this district should be about…the kids and the tireless employees who serve them!




    •  
      Joseph L. Williams II

      While your analysis is, for the most part, spot on, I am concerned that because our community is still largely asleep at the wheel, the real problem, recalcitrant board members who’ve served far beyond their usefulness (i.e., assuming they were, indeed, useful at one time), are bent on perpetuating board-business-as-usual.

      Approximately two years ago, I prayerfully and carefully cautioned the board about the danger of allowing three ships to govern district business practices–kinSHIP, friendSHIP, and courtSHIP, promising that decisions based on these ships are Titanics on which our district would eventually sink to the depths. This prophecy has indeed come true. Unfortunately, however, the worst for our precious children, district, and community is yet to come, for I am unconvinced that our board has learned its lesson.

      For example, word is already circulating that the board plans to bring back a former central-office administrator-ally who can only give us more of the same. If this is true, it’s a very sad day for our precious children.

      The wheeling and dealing goes on, including a district hand out and up that, without dynamic intervention, will likely result in a Benbrook ISD.

      But I’m not sure if the larger part of our community has the awareness,or will to make the tough decisions regarding new and competent leadership, including on the board. I’m not sure if we are ready and willing to do the thorough house cleaning at the top you’ve so wisely suggested.




  2.  
    Lynn

    I’m pleased the District can search for a person that focuses on the students and teachers instead of someone that makes patting yourself on the back look like an Olympic sport. He is a bully that is more interested in the athletic department and whatever favor of the month that makes him look good. Shame on you and your supporters, Mr. Dansby. I’m glad you are leaving. Now maybe staff can get back to work instead of attending all your Malcolm Baldridge meetings. There are others that should follow his example and resign…the executive staff that sat by and did nothing while the education of children suffered because of Mr. Dansby’s ego. They know who they are…too scared of the superintendent to do the right thing…for the district and especially the children. A good superintendent should be able to accept those with differing points of view. Dansby was not one of them. If you didn’t agree with him, you must not be a team player. And those board members that continue to support him after seeing the recent test scores…your focus is clearly not on the children either. Why are you a school board member?

    No one resigns from this position before their contract is up without cause. In this case I hope it was the low test scores and low performing schools because that is what is most important.

    This is my opinion only but one I share with others.




    •  
      Joseph

      Our district’s woes began long before Mr. Dansby. The truth is, in large measure, Mr. Dansby reaped the harvest of bad seeds sown by his predecessor and her reckless application of legitimately contested theories that have left our children weaker in critical fundamental skills that now undermine their performance. Just think about it. It takes more than two or three years to do the kind of K-12 damage we now see in our district.

      You could more easily insert the name of our former district leader in your comment.




      •  
        Lynn

        Absolutely right. This problem didn’t occur overnight and can’t be solved quickly. The truth is to believe it has everything to do with student performance is to believe the board actually places their main focus on the kids.

        Pending litigation and claims of bullying and retaliation may have factors. The money spend on athletics, excessive pay raises for select central office and bond personnel, and creating and filling new “executive” positions with friends may have been factors. Arranging and signing “consulting” contracts with friends may have been a factor. Facts known only by the board may have influenced them. We will probably never know.

        In any event, I’m ready for the reliever…this guy was starting to throw wild. Hopefully things will calm down a bit during the summer.




        •  
          REX

          Lynn,
          I do not know where you are getting your facts about with the amount the district spends on athletics. The athletics department had their budgets cut three years ago by 10%. This also included all coaches’ stipends. Whereas the teaches pay have increased ( thank you) the stipends for coaches have not, and please spare me the anal complaining about the fact that they receive extra money at all. When was the last time you spent 80 hours a week working with students for 6 months.
          Yes, it is a new dawn and the future could be bright if the board decides to do the correct thing and hire someone with common sense, something lacking in today’s society.
          Rex




          •  
            Lynn

            People choose to be coaches. It’s an additional duty that they take on willingly. But…they are entitled to extra pay for the hours they work. What I was referring to was not the employees…though they are a few in Athletics that are only there because of Mr. Dansby. I was referring to Mr. Dansby’s priorities…that the stadiums get new scoreboards, new press boxes, field houses, and I know he pushed for new turf for the football fields like they have at Arlington Heights and Paschal. The capital improvement projects for Athletics were some of his pet projects. That’s all I’m saying. I know coaches work long hours…some just for the extra money…but some that truly love to coach. BTW…There were a lot of stipends and monthly allowances cut…not just in Athletics.




  3.  
    Teacher

    Thank GOD this nightmare is over. Now it’s time to finish the job which no one since Tocco has had the guts to do: CLEAN OUT CENTRAL ADMINISTRATION. Start with the three stooges Breed, Ray and Sorum. Then move on down the line. One thing is certain after watching all of the T.V. coverage: reporters are lazy. Not one of them discussed the nepotism, patronage, chaos, bullying and endless litigation which typified this organization under Dansby. Much of which has been covered by the Weekly. If you still belong to UEA – after hearing Steven Poole on the news defending him – you should resign right now.




  4.  
    Tukuluarko

    Benbrook ISD is around the corner! After the Fort Worth citizens approved the bond package, Benbrook will have the facilities to become BENBROOK ISD. Congratulation to Dansby for retiring with that big salary. Great way to go COACH!




  5.  
    DontMatter

    With or without Dansby the district will be the same!!




    •  
      Lynn

      Unfortunately I believe you are right. I haven’t seen anything of substance change…only the players, who seem to get weaker and weaker.




  6.  
    CIA

    ciafwisd.blogspot.com

    we report what we find out!!!




  7.  
    Insider

    The truth will be revealed and Karma will strike them down if this Board is ignorant and arrogant enough to appeal the Jury award and legal fees awarded Palazzolo and just sustained by the District Court on Thursday. Remember the Palazzolo witch hunt could have been over last year for 10 times less than the Jury trial Dansby asked for. So now with elections looming for at least four (4) Board members, let them vote to appeal – then watch the fur fly. Witness tampering; perjury; concealing documents…………. Why did we lie? Our lawyer made us do it. Lets get a total on legal fees for just this one case.




  8.  
    Obvious

    6-3
    Hmmmmmm….

    Moss- we understand why; generational.

    Robbins- save face.

    Ramos- you got what you wanted in your schools, you played your cards right and you had A LOT to lose if you had gone against him.

    Linares- same of the same. Bullying culture will never change.

    Sorum- READY??? Have you seen the scores?

    Tocco and Johnson regime needs to be flushed out. Children of this city deserve better.

    Six board members did the RIGHT THING in 2014!

    Now, let’s move forward for the sake of the children and the city of Fort Worth.




    •  
      A New Beginning

      So if the Board did do the right thing in getting rid of Dansby, why then is the Board still listening to the same law firm who has guided them through 4 years of defeat after defeat? Dansby was listening to them. Isn’t it time to end the legal BS and start over?




  9.  
    Justice

    The most hilarious comment I heard after the vote was Dansby’s bogus attempt at “quieting his supporters” saying something about moving forward for the sake of the students. What a joke! That sounded about as sincere as him not wanting to take the extra pay for becoming interim Super! Does anyone remember that big fat lie, as the big fat Vasquez said “We wish we could give you more”? It was staged as all get out back then, just like last night’s brouhaha. He got off easy, because the public doesn’t know the real truth! Poor, poor Dansby…Karma finally bit him on the ass and now he is acting like the wounded little helpless bird that fell out of the nest. PUUUULEEEEEZE! It’s been all about the money and only the money, for Dansby. Just now heard he is getting 907K in pay and benefits and will remain an employee of the district until Jan 2015 as District Ambassador of Public Relations!!!??? HAHAHAA! What can he possibly do to help this district in Public Relations? His reaction on the news “I’m okay”. Of course you are “okay” you evil man! You sucked the money you wanted out of the district for all the crap you have done, especially spending millions on litigation and to ruin people’s lives due to YOUR F***king lies! Your “goodbye” email to employees today was sappy and filled with way too much crap about what “we” have accomplished. Just because you used “We” and not “I” doesn’t change that you are so full of yourself and want for the district to think that you were short sighted. What a load of dung! This district has 38 FAILING SCHOOLS, you jackass! No matter how you say it or spray it…our district failed because of your damn selfish mentality. All you have done is to try to relive your old coaching glory days and used the students and employees of this district in your evil plot. Yet there are impending lawsuits against you and you and the BOE still think about appealing Joe Palazzolo’s Jury award??? It is YOU, “who shouldn’t be allowed around children”! You will pay dearly for all you have said and done to this district for the last 40 yrs! The people who celebrate you should have their heads examined!




  10.  
    Reality

    This was a victory for students, employees and parents of FWISD but Dansby now shares on important thing with MJ: both took the fall for an inept Board still scurrying about trying to cover up their own incompetence. If the Board does not now act SWIFTLY to end the Palazzolo legal morass, voters need to make this the turning point for turning over the entire Board. It is the Board who has concealed from the Public and lied under the guise of “personnel issues”. Too bad they did not extend that same courtesy to Palazzolo. Board elections are coming and we – the ordinary parent and taxpayer not the wealth chamber people – need to organize and throw every one of these people out. This legal firm, who threatened employees and Board members alike, continues to lead the Board around by the nose. It is time to STOP. Look at the package you just gave Dansby; look at what you spent to unsuccessfully fire an innocent man over FOUR years! Enough already!!




  11.  
    Nothing Surprises Me!

    I am a former employee of the FWISD. I left Dallas as a teacher to become an assistant principal at Glencrest M.S. in 1994. I was quickly promoted to serve as interim principal of Forest Oak M.S. within a year & a half. Forest Oak was totally out of control, & with the help of my staff, we turned the school around. I was then given the job permanently. Student behavior improved tremendously; police summons became a non-issue; test scores were on the rise; and the overall culture and climate changed for the better; teachers were held accountable; in fact I spended one teacher twice for inappropriate language & touching of girls. My stock was rising! I was told that I was slated to be the next principal of O.D. Wyatt H.S. Then all hell broke loose. Mr. Dansby, who had pretended to be my supporter & mentor, visited my school with 7 or 8 of his staff members, and they met with me in the library. Each took turns, except the one gentleman, telling me how aweful my school was. Mr. Dansby told me if the superintendent saw what he and his staff saw “heads would roll.” I was dumbfounded. This same superintendent vivisted Forest Oak with several of his staff members after I had been principal for about six weeks, and he was amazed at the huge improvements in such a short period of time. Mr. Dansby knew I was at a budget meeting so his report was based on his observations alone. When I came back from my meeting, I did not see anything he mentioned in his report. After Mr. Dansby and his staff left, my librarian told me that someone was out to get me, and she believed Mr. Dans y was in the middle of it. I saw Mr. Dansby one more time at my school. He could not look me in the eye because he knew he had stabbed me in the back. All he said to me was, “Continue to move the school forward.” he left, and I never saw him again while I was principal at Forest Oak. Before the start of the next school year I left the district. Several people in the district told me that Mr. Dansby was threatened by me. They believed tha I was his stiffest competition. Plus, being from Dallas did not work in my favor. These comments are not to disparage Mr. Dansby, but it is my understanding that the way he bullied me is his MO. I hope the district look hard to make the right hire next time because the students and employees in FWISD deserve it. God bless!




  12.  

    Nothing’s story is typical of the kind of back stabbing, cut throat behavior we’ve seen from administrators downtown, in the schools, and on the school board. It’s so incredibly sad that we have to deal with that instead of focusing on the kids.




    •  
      Wondering

      So why then is the Board insisting on keeping the Palazzolo litigation going – even after the whopping buyout they gave Dansby?




  13.  
    Deep six

    Some needs to look at the cover up at Wilkerson with FLOODGATE !!!!!




  14.  
    Conscience Man

    There is no soap in the bathrooms for the students or staff. Roofs continue to leak with garbage cans placed under the leaks. The technology, even for the teachers is outdated, while students in other school districts have IPADs. The level of incompetence and inefficiency is staggering. Leadership is never seen in the schools. Many of the schools resemble prisons. No one dare speaks out of fear. The majority of teachers and students continue to preserver, doing the best they can under the circumstances. Why on earth would anyone deserve a $235,000 salary? Our public schools are being run by pseudo-CEOs that have one goal, and one goal only-enrich themselves and their friends. Then we fire and reward them with severance packages. The people of Fort Worth should be outraged, but they are unconscious and oblivious, apparently with priorities other than children. These are sad times, but they can change-we need to take our schools and communities back. They belong to us, not the state, and especially not the federal government. When they say we can’t, we respond in UNITY, regardless of race or social status, you watch us! Get out of our way! The community needs to demand that we clean house, but ensure we replace this sorry administration with leaders, not managers. Leaders that inspire, leaders with ethics, that are honest, and genuine, who are out for the betterment of others rather than themselves. How is that done? Actions speak louder than words. Look to their deeds rather than the rhetoric.




  15.  
    Anonymous

    The district has a bad way of conducting its business and it fosters poor student outcomes. There seems to be this belief that only the born and raised folks of Fort Worth are capable of leading their schools and this district. Outsiders who bring new ideas and experience from other districts are shunned or frowned upon. The culture of intimidation and fear is real for those who are internal. One major problem with being a homer is the perpetuation of some very bad cultural practices that are so deeply entrenched that it’s sad. It’s sad because regardless of who is at the helm, the district will likely continue its poor performance? The poor academic performance is what is driving the cities current residents to neighboring districts and cities that are more progressive and serious about student achievement.

    I’ve personally witnessed, capable, confident, principals, leading successful schools be removed after proven success. It’s typically the confident, outspoken principals, that are not familiar with the nuances of the district and challenge the status quo, who are swiftly removed. Many of the longstanding administrators know and will share, “all I have to do is be quiet and do what I’m told and I’ll have a job”. These same administrators whether successful or not, subscribe to this norm, receive promotions, and promote the same cultural tendencies in central office. The culture is toxic and hinders the districts progress.

    Innovation is driving education right now, so change is imminent and must be embraced. The next appointment for our Superintendent will send a clear message to observers about what kind of district we really want to be. All Superintendents come with a history…a resume. The community should be watching closely to see if the board actually selects someone with a proven tract record of successful school leadership, and has a proven track record of improving student performance. As long as Fort Worth continues to embrace, and promote the old culture which does not empower or equip its principals or school leadership to truly LEAD student success, and hold all leadership accountable using fair and transparent measures, the district will continue to fail our families and friends.

    I would be negligent if I did not encourage the public to do a better job of holding the board accountable for school success as well. The superintendant and the board must work in concert for the district to fully reach its potential.





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