Friday, October 20, 2006

MSSD official says school buses were blocked

Hello, everyone, remember I told you earilier that I would investigate this on my own? I did and emailed Elizabeth Meynardie, who is in charge of Community Building at MSSD. Following is a copy of her response to my inquiry.

I would like to clarify my role here at my blogsite. You all already know where I stand on this issue. As a cartoonist my job here is to provide comic relief for everyone, regardless of which side they stand on. Yet at the same time, as a writer and as a journalist currently working for SIGNews, I have a responsibility to bring out the facts in an unbiased and balanced manner possible. It is not my position here to give a spin on this or that or write a commentary or do an analysis of the news. I will leave this to the protestors to rebut Ms. Meynardie's statement and the bloggers to comment on this.

As a MSSD alumnus, I am not sure if I can speak for all MSSD alumni because I did not graduate from there. I went to MSSD from 1978 to 1981 and was going to be prep at Gallaudet during my senior year in 1982. Had I remained at MSSD, I would have been one of the youngest students at Gallaudet! But I was transferred to a hearing school instead. Nevertheless, MSSD remains to be and always will be part of my identity. I am certain many MSSD alumni out there do share what I think and feel at this moment. It is clear out there on the Internet that many MSSD alumni, faculty and staff (whether former or current) are not in support of Provost Jane K. Fernandes staying on to become President. With this in mind, I would like to invite MSSD alumni to present their opinions,viewpoints and reactions to this issue. They may post their comments here or anywhere else.

I would like to add that all my opinions expressed here are solely my own and in no way should be associated with SIGNews or any organization or any of the clients I work with.

- Dan McClintock
MSSD alumni,
Class of 1982


From:
"Elizabeth Meynardie"

To:
"'Dan McClintock'"
Cc:
"'Betsy Meynardie'"

Date:
20 Oct 2006, 11:59:43 AM
Subject:
RE: MSSD and the Gallaudet Protests

Dear Mr. McClintock:
Thank you for your email. I'm sorry that I haven't responded earlier, I was
out of town for a family emergency and just received your email today.
Currently Gallaudet University, including MSSD and KDES is open. There is
one entrance to the university open, (the 6ht street entrance) all other
gates are blocked by protesters.

Classes and programs at both the elementary school and the high school are
in session.

The entire university was closed by the protestors from October 11th through
the 13th. School buses weren't allowed to leave to pick up elementary
students and only minimal MSSD staff were allowed entrance to supervise the
high school students who live in the dorms.
However, both schools resumed their academic programs this week.
betsy

Elizabeth Meynardie
Manager,
Office of Training and Professional Development
elizabeth.meynardie@gallaudet.edu
(202) 651-5855
Laurent Clerc National Deaf Education Center
Gallaudet University

-----Original Message-----
From: Dan McClintock [mailto:dmcclintock@sandiego.com]
Sent: Wednesday, October 18, 2006 11:32 AM
To: Elizabeth.Meynardie@gallaudet.edu
Subject: MSSD and the Gallaudet Protests
Dear Ms. Meynardie,
I am checking to see whether if the reports of some protestors blocking MSSD
and KDES students at the entrance are true? With a great deal of conflicting
information out on the Internet, I would like to get some straight facts
from MSSD. Any information, clarification or comment from you would be
appreciated.
Thank you,
Dan McClintock
blogger, MSSD alumni
http://dmccartoon.blogspot.com

14 comments:

DEAF ADVOCATE said...

She said she was out on family emergency...she did not say what time frame it was. it is mixed messages...sending confusing signals...it is NOT reliable information.

We need to look further to see who will do more.

thanks!

Anonymous said...

She wasn't at the gates. I was. And we allowed buses, post office, cafeteria workers, etc in. Get our side of the story... from the people who actually stood at the gates, not from Elizabeth who stayed at home during the lockdown and did not know whether if the buses were allowed in or not. Would you take her word over the people who actually stood at the gates?

Dan McClintock said...

Note I said in my comment above that I would leave this to the protestors to present a rebuttal. I didn't say whose word I would take over whose. This is an opportunity for you to present your side of the story. Also note I have already posted a clarification by a friend here that MSSD and KDES students were not blocked.

I have emailed the FSSA on separate occassions (not related to this news) and due to lack of their response to my emails, I assume they were too overwhelmed to reply to me. Which is understandable and I don't blame them. Besides, the FSSA were on record for saying they do not condone violence or vandalism or any other tactic that would endandger the safety of others. However, it wasn't immediately clear to me or others (who weren't there) a while ago what actually happened at the MSSD & KDES gates and I think they have not issued out a detailed statement in regard to that. If I missed out one, let me know. Nevertheless, I invite the FSSA coalition to present their side of the story so it can be cleared for all. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

The responsibility of the schools' closing lies with the university, not the protesters. The university ordered KDES and MSSD to be closed, even though the protesters were going to let the students and the staff in.

mishkazena

Anonymous said...

The responsibility of the schools' closing lies with the university, not the protesters. The university ordered KDES and MSSD to be closed, even though the protesters were going to let the students and the staff in.

mishkazena

Anonymous said...

Note that she said
School buses weren't allowed to leave to pick up elementary students

She didn't say that the buses were not allowed in with the students.

adcgirl said...

If the busses were not allowed to LEAVE how in the world would they be able to pick up the students and bring them IN?!?!

adcgirl said...

So the protesters DID block them from coming in by preventing the busses from going out to get them!

Dan McClintock said...

>>Anonymous said:
Note that she said
School buses weren't allowed to leave to pick up elementary students

She didn't say that the buses were not allowed in with the students.

8:57 PM>>

Hmm. This brings up a question of semantics. If the school buses weren't allowed to leave, the question is FROM WHERE? By WHOM were the buses not allowed?

- D.

Dan McClintock said...

>>adcgirl said...
So the protesters DID block them from coming in by preventing the busses from going out to get them!

11:24 PM>>

I wouldn't move so fast, adcgirl. There's still this puzzling part of Elizabeth Meynardie's statement. If the buses were not allowed to leave to go pick up the elementary students, where were the buses parked? Overnight at KDES? I'm trying to remember if buses were normally parked at the campus during nights. My impression was that buses were provided by the District, isn't that right? And the parking lot for all school buses in the city is located off campus, am I right? See, I wasn't a day student at MSSD and never commuted to MSSD on a school bus. I lived at dorms during my time there. Would anyone who was a day student at MSSD help to clarify this?

If the buses were not on the premises of KDES before they left to pick up elementary students, then who did not allow the buses to leave? Could it be the Administration at Gallaudet? Could it be Elizabeth Meynardie's slip of tongue?

Dan McClintock said...

>> Anonymous said...
The responsibility of the schools' closing lies with the university, not the protesters. The university ordered KDES and MSSD to be closed, even though the protesters were going to let the students and the staff in.>>

Misha, I see that. I know the university has the sole authority to close any building on its premises at any time. But, with due respect, this is not a rebuttal statement. I don't see any detail provided here. Whom are you speaking for? Are you speaking for yourself only or the protestors in general or the FSSA coalition?

The words "even though the protesters were going to let the students and the staff in" raised a question in my mind. "Going to"? Does this mean the protestors did not let in the students and staff before?

What is needed here is a clarification and full accounting of what happened in regards to the bus incident prior during the week prior to "Black Friday." It would not help the FSSA to be quiet on this. In order to project a stronger and more positive image that I mentioned in my earlier post, the FSSA must be forthcoming and honest in its accounting of what happened. If it does this, it would help its cause a great further because I think many people are still confused and would like to know more. I know they would want to support the FSSA, as so do I personally. But I think they would feel better, especially some MSSD alumni who were not there, if the FSSA moves to resolve those questions.

I have just emailed the FSSA (directly at their website) yesterday and asked them for their rebuttal statement after I reported Ms. Meynardie's statement. So far no reply came yet.

Let there be no question of my sympathy with the protestors, for I too would like to see JKF go.

Dan McClintock said...

For some reason, my post on MSSD official's statement appeared in double pages on my blogsite, so to reduce readers' confusion, I've deleted one page, copied & pasted Deaf Advocate's comments here. My apology to Deaf Advocate if he was under impression that I removed his comment.

2 Comments:

DEAF ADVOCATE said...
so you removed my comment? you need to get more proof you only asked one person and that person may have his/her hands tied as he/she does not want to lose his/her job.

12:07 PM
Dan McClintock said...
Deaf Advocate,

What do you mean, I removed your comment? Your comment is still here, at above. I would never censor or even delete anyone's comments, as you seem to imply. I asked more than 1 person, mind you. Of course, that is possible the person's hands may be tied for reason of his/her job. You see, as a journalist, I wanted to get it from the horse's mouth. I wanted to listen what a representative at MSSD had to say on this. I am also interested in what the FSSA has to say. I am only doing my job. I have stated repeatedly here that here is an opportunity for the protestors to provide facts that can debunk the official's statement - and you choose to get snippy with me? Why don't YOU provide more proof?

Thank you,
D.

12:28 PM
Post a Comment

Anonymous said...

I used to work with the transportation department. All buses are kept in the basement of the parking structure on 6th street, on campus. The buses usually leave around 6 am. Now about the protest - we do not trap anyone inside. Everyone who has cars, buses, vans, you name it, are allowed out, but not everyone can get back in. We do not kidnap anyone on campus. That would be a severe violation! Everyone can leave as they please. And since we all agree that the school buses carrying students and teachers at MSSD/KDES were allowed back in, so the lies lie with the administration not the protest.

Dan McClintock said...

Ah finally someone has replied to my question! Anonymous, thank you for your clarification! Yes, that's what I thought, I remember now, thank you. It had been a long time since I last visited Kendall Green. So the protestors didn't prevent the buses from leaving to pick up the MSSD/KDES students. Ok, that's good. But I am more interested in what happened prior to Black Friday, whether they did attempt to block the buses before then and at a point when they decided to reverse this action before I. King Jordan ordered arrests. However, keep in mind whether if any of the protestors actually violated any law, it would not change my mind and I would still support a pardon for all!

Thank you again,

Dan