Archive for July 2012

“End the lawsuit” — 5-24 and 7-26-2012

July 26, 2012

From the RB Landmark website, http://www.rblandmark.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=9028&SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&S=1

Posted: Thursday, May 24, 2012
Article comment by:
chris robling

End the lawsuit

The lawsuit is hardly as serious as the infractions documented by the Landmark to which it objects.

It has shed numerous defendants, counts and theories. Already, the attorney was suspended briefly for
failure to complete adequate continuing legal education in a given period. It now appears he faces such serious ethical questions that he is particularly inappropriate to advance claims based on allegations of improprieties by public officials and employees.

I said in The Landmark’s pages, before the election last spring, that the paper had demonstrated the school’s egregious disregard for the legal ban on politicking by the school. In short, Tim Scanlon
ran the referendum campaign from RB. His bosses either were incompetent or complicit.
https://chrisrobling.com/2012/02/25/instant-react-to-landmarks-illicit-campaign-aticle/

None of this warms the heart, all of it showed how off-the-track RB administration had gone after years of neglect followed by caretaker disregard.

But it is now more than 56 weeks ago.

My heart sunk when the lawsuit was announced. In a New York minute one could see the board’s conflicted
holdover attorney (he advised the prior board and prior administration during the very period of alleged violations) advised abandoning its pledges for an investigation, simultaneously saying that a) the suit is frivolous and fails to state a claim for which relief can be granted and b) we CANNOT investigate
because to do so would create discoverable documents that might cost the district dearly in money damages at law.

The argument makes and made no sense when taken as a whole. It now appears — as plaintiffs proceed with essentially their third try at a complaint — that “a” was true. But, if “a” is true, then “b” cannot be true.

Now, no one wants to go back, especially with numerous folks gone and campaign manager Scanlon within 45 days of retirement. (Scanlon, sadly, now faces health issues from which everyone hopes he recovers quickly and fully.)

There is no accountability until someone is held accountable. For the flagrancy of our HS becoming campaign HQ, we deserved an investigation. And accountability.

Instead, for all of the wrong reasons, namely the imploding goofy lawsuit with its bedraggled lawyer for
plaintiffs, and our conflicted lawyer calling shots for us, it appears we are not going to get one.

That means “breathe easy” time for all staff who used public facilities to campaign.

The taxpayers’ “breathe easy” time will come when we know that staff knows in RB’s new culture violating the law will not be tolerated.

Dr. Kevin Skinkis’ leadership sets the right tone, but the parade of horribles to which we were exposed shows the new Board’s constant vigilance is itself irreplaceable.

“Thanks to all candidates for office” — 4-14-2009

July 21, 2012
4/14/2009 10:00:00 PM  Email this article • Print this article 

Thanks to the candidates and their families for taking time to run for office, formulating positions and pushing public discussion and debate forward.

Democracy depends on an involved public. Campaigning is a most demanding level of participation. The candidates made that contribution, and we benefited. Thank you.

Chris Robling
Riverside

“Conservative students give thumbs up to pundit” — 5/19/2009

July 21, 2012

Here is the follow-up to Mike Gallagher’s appearance at RBHS, a reply to Bill Ayers’ earlier talk.  Thank you, Mike Gallagher.

“I think it was great because, like he said, the liberals control most of the media and the people don’t get both sides of the subject,” said Frank Lubek Jr., a junior at RB. “He presented his views that normally wouldn’t get presented in the school environment.”

During his talk, Gallagher criticized Ayers.

“Activism doesn’t mean you blow up buildings and don’t apologize for it,” Gallagher said. “He was a domestic terrorist.”

The whole RB Landmark article is available at: http://www.rblandmark.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=5006&SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&S=1

“District says ‘no thanks’ to citizens committee” — 6-23-2009

July 21, 2012

An awful moment with D96:

“We wanted an open, inclusive effort in coming up with a new plan,” Robling told the board on June 16. “We want to create a public input process that would take place over the summer.”

“In April, the board welcomed us and we prepared extensively with staff and board members in good faith seeking their guidance and coordination,” Robling said. “And we recognized at all times that the board would make the choices on how to proceed. And they chose to move forward without robust public input.”

Full article at: http://www.rblandmark.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=5113&SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&S=1

“Fox News pundit to speak at RBHS” — 5-5-2009

July 21, 2012

Quote from the article—

RB parent and Republican activist and commentator Chris Robling was instrumental in putting RB in touch with WIND so that RB could present a conservative speaker to counterbalance Ayers, who spoke at RB in February.

“It is very important for RB to present kids with a balanced view of important topics and this certainly adds balance to the question of activism that changes the world,” Robling said. “The students will be well served, because they will have the issue of activism approached from two different points on the political spectrum.”

On the morning of Ayers’ appearance Robling suggested to District 208 board member Bill McCloskey that RB schedule a conservative speaker to present a different viewpoint from Ayers.

McCloskey passed along the suggestion to RB Assistant Principal Tim Scanlon who in short order called Robling and asked for suggestions on possible speakers.

Full RB Landmark article at: http://www.rblandmark.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=4961&SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&S=1

“Not guilty verdict for indicted coach” — 6-24-2009

July 21, 2012

My two comments on the story you can find at http://www.rblandmark.com/main.asp?TypeID=1&ArticleID=5110&SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&Page=2

Posted: Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Article comment by: Chris Robling

Let me be very clear: whoever was responsible for the interaction of coaches and kids ought to stand up, say so and take what is coming. I do not know who that was — I am only a constituent reading the article. I mention the names in the article. One would hope that the party would have the honor to say, “I allowed this to happen on my watch.” If not, the structure should investigate and let the chips fall where they may. 

Posted: Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Article comment by: Chris Robling

This is an outrage.

Let’s be very clear, it is uncontested that the grass and equipment was there, and that at all times he was coaching our wrestlers he was under indictment for possession with intent to distribute.

Not one parent voted for an RB that puts someone with $20,000 of grass and distribution equipment at home in close contact with high school kids.

Someone — the athletic director and assistant principal for starters — has to be held accountable.

This is the same RB that decided one year ago it did not need its most qualified drug counselor, and made him leave.

To be an adult boy scout leader, one must pass a security background check, including a police record check. Same to be a Sunday school teacher at most churches. But not at RB?

IHSA says even volunteer coaches must be checked out. Now we know why.

If the A.D. and assistant principal knew and did nothing, they should be fired. If they did not care to know, then they should resign or be fired. No one can remain who has allowed such a breach to take place. How can they be trusted?

It is time for board leadership to cleanse the school and restore public trust. It is what we voted for in April.

Zeman and the bonded-out indictee — 8-5-2009

July 21, 2012

(Posted at the RB Landmark’s, “RBHS athletic direct calm under fire” at: http://www.rblandmark.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=5229&SectionID=1&SubSectionID=1&S=1)

Posted: Wednesday, August 05, 2009
Article comment by: Chris Robling

Otto Zeman is responsible for RB’s Athletic Department. That is what being “Athletic Director” means.

As such, he is responsible for the bonded-out indictee for possession with intent to distribute drugs becomming an RB frosh-soph wrestling coach, period.

Otto Zeman therefore should be accountable for that having happened under his authority.

Frankly, if Riverside Brookfield High School wants to improve its standing with the community, then the Board will say, “Otto, good bye.”

Of course, the Board ought already to have acted on this. Perhaps the Landmark article will awaken this Board and especially its president to their personal responsibility for Mr Zeman’s continued presence at RBHS, whereas the cited offenses by Mr Zeman took place under the Herbst/Baldermann administration.